“From the undeniable acceptance-the axiomatic status-of this apriori of argumentation, two equally necessary conclusions follow. First, it follows from the apriori of argumentation when there is no rational solution to the problem of conflict arising from the existence of scarcity. Suppose in my earlier scenario of Crusoe and Friday that Friday were not the name of a man but of a gorilla.
Obviously, just as Crusoe could face conflict regarding his body and its standing room with Friday the man, so might he with Friday the gorilla. The gorilla might want to occupy the same space that Crusoe already occupied. In this case, at least if the gorilla were the sort of entity that we know gorillas to be, there would be no rational solution to their conflict. Either the gorilla would push aside, crush, or devour Crusoe-that would be the gorilla’s solution to the problem-or Crusoe would tame, chase, beat, or kill the gorilla-that would be Crusoe’s solution. In this situation, one might indeed speak of moral relativism. However, it would be more appropriate to refer to this situation as one in which the question of justice and rationality simply would not arise; that is, it would be considered an extra-moral situation. The existence of Friday the gorilla would pose a technical, not a moral, problem for Crusoe. He would have no other choice than to learn how to successfully manage and control the movements of the gorilla just as he would have to learn to manage and control other inanimate objects of his environment.
By implication, only if both parties in a conflict are capable of engaging in argumentation with one another, can one speak of a moral problem and is the question of whether or not there exists a solution to it a meaningful question. Only if Friday, regardless of his physical appearance, is capable of argumentation (even if he has shown himself to be capable only once), can he be deemed rational and does the question whether or not a correct solution to the problem of social order exists make sense. No one can be expected to give any answer to someone who has never raised a question or, more to the point, who has never stated his own relativistic viewpoint in the form of an argument. In that case, this “other” cannot but be regarded and treated as an animal or plant, i.e., as an extra-moral entity. Only if this other entity can pause in his activity, whatever it might be, step back, and say “yes” or “no” to something one has said, do we owe this entity an answer and, accordingly, can we possibly claim that our answer is the correct one for both parties involved in a conflict.”
Why is this entitled “Animal Rights”? Why is this even tagged “animal rights”? Shouldn’t this be called “Crusoe and the Gorilla”? Sounds like this is a complete dismissal of animal rights based solely on the fact that they cannot argue? Or is the point that there is no answer to the animal rights issue? If I’ve taken this the wrong way, someone please let me know.
Only tells me that you’re afraid I’m right. If you ask why I’m vegan, I’m going to tell you why (I think it’s wrong to take another life for the sake of my eating and life style preferences). Of course eating whatever I wanted would be easier, and, of course, not thinking about where my clothing and cosmetics came from would be much easier. But it is because I hold the belief that every living creature deserves a life free of suffering that I choose to do as much as possible to make sure that I don’t use or consume any product that would result in said suffering. This is not an elitist stance. I believe something, and, because of this, I do something that upholds that belief. If you’re not vegan, I’m sure you can think of a similar belief-plus-resulting-action combo of your own. Maybe you believe it’s important to make good grades, so you study for your exams and do your homework. Same thing. You probably even think that, if I care about grades, I should also study and do my homework, right? So yes, I would love for you to be a vegan. Honestly, it would thrill me. We could cook together or have a vegan potluck or something. The fact that you get so defensive after asking me why I’m vegan and then accuse me of being self righteous simply doesn’t make sense. Then you explain to me that you don’t feel guilty, that factory farming doesn’t bother you, that the animals aren’t really suffering, that me being vegan doesn’t really effect anything, that you enjoy eating meat, oh yeah, and that you DON’T FEEL GUILTY. I’m sorry if I struck a cord, but your anger simply doesn’t follow. If you really disagreed with me, then you wouldn’t be angry, just like I’m not angry when you tell me that I my teeth were designed for eating meat. I simply know you’re wrong. Maybe that’s the problem; we both know you’re wrong.
And you feel threatened by vegans and animal welfare advocates. You feel that we are against your way of life, against your family and its well being. Though I understand the source of your defensiveness, I’d like to tell you that it is unfounded. No one wants to take away your family’s livelihood, far from it. Our goal is to end animal cruelty, speciesism, racism, and sexism, really all forms of prejudice. Of course, in general, the top concern is factory farming (this being the most cruel and unnatural form of animal abuse), but ultimately the slaughter of any animal for the sake of food, research, or entertainment is all part of the same monster. I’m sure your family farm is a beautiful place and that you would never intentionally abuse your animals, your grazing dollar signs, but you must realize that your logic was once used to uphold slavery at one time. The same logic that says it is OK to use another human for one’s own benefit or profit is the same reasoning that says it os OK to use and slaughter animals. It is the same logic that says it is OK to view women as objects of pleasure. Any way you look at it, you are devaluing LIFE as a whole. You are not the target, but as long as you dismiss the message of vegans and animal rights activists, and react only with anger and aggression, you are only a part of the problem. So angrily devour your BLT (and don’t mind the artery clogging cholesterol and fat therein). You sure showed me.
Where do you live? Where were you born? Where is your family from? What's your favorite city and why?
I was born and raised in good ole Little Rock, AR. My family is from AR and MI–unless you meant historically in which case, all over Europe. Though I love my hometown, my favorite city would probably have to be Zapopan, Mexico. I spent a lot of time there when I studied abroad, and it was beautiful, sprawling, and filled with all kinds of history and interesting places.
“Civil disobedience is not our problem. Our problem is civil obedience. Our problem is that numbers of people all over the world have obeyed the dictates of the leaders of their government and have gone to war, and millions have been killed because of this obedience. Our problem is that people are obedient all over the world in the face of poverty and starvation and stupidity, and war, and cruelty. Our problem is that people are obedient while the jails are full of petty thieves, and all the while the grand thieves are running and robbing the country. That’s our problem.”—Howard Zinn (via hollow-gram)
When women explain to you — in a calm, nuanced, proportionate way — that there are some contexts in which your advances are less likely to be well-received than others, and you respond by sticking your fingers in your ears and screaming about ball-busting, man-hating feminists who are hell-bent on eradicating all flirting and sex and eroding your First Amendment right to proposition any woman at any time and place? When you resist hearing that hitting on a woman who’s alone in an elevator in a strange city at four o’clock in the morning is not likely to be well-received, that it’s likely to be perceived as a potential threat, and that you are likely to be perceived as an insensitive clod at best if you do it? When we explain ten times, a hundred times, a thousand times, that elevators are well-documented as a common place for women to get raped and that it’s therefore not an appropriate place to make sexual advances — and you still reply, “But I don’t understand what the problem is with elevators”?
I have to assume that getting laid is not the point.
I have to assume that the point is something entirely different. I have to assume that you will do anything to resist hearing that women experience male advances in a very different context from the way men experience female advances. I have to assume that you have an active resistance to understanding that women’s experiences are different from men’s: that (among other things) women routinely get our professional/ intellectual/ artistic accomplishments dismissed in favor of a focus on our sexual attractiveness, and that women have to be seriously cautious about physical and sexual violence from men. When you are so vehemently unwilling to see some of the ways that privilege works in your favor, I have to assume that maintaining privilege is the point.
”—An awesome article about feminism in general, and about feminism’s intersection with other ideological movements (in this case, atheim in specific.) Via hecatedemeter (via grrrlvirus)
To the average American, who was still staring into the abyss, the half-stimulus did nothing but prove that Ronald Reagan was right, that government is the problem. In fact, the average American had no idea what Democrats were trying to accomplish by deficit spending because no one bothered to explain it to them with the repetition and evocative imagery that our brains require to make an idea, particularly a paradoxical one, “stick.”
Maher asked Romer, “How uncontroversial is Keynesian economics?”
Romer said, “The basic idea that if you increase government spending or you cut people’s taxes that stimulates the economy and lowers the unemployment rate, is a very widely accepted idea. It’s in every economics textbook, that’s what we teach our undergraduates, and I certainly try to teach them the truth.
"It is a very known and accepted idea and fact and the empirical evidence is definitely there, and people just want to say the sky is green."
Maher asked Romer how she felt about being “Palinized” by Republicans who aren’t economists. She said, “Policy would be better if we listened to the experts.”
Many times I’ve riffed on a dark, delicious fantasy about rounding up Tea Bagger types and sentencing them to green re-education camps for minimum one-year terms. Not to punish per se but to expose these contemptible morons to facts, to truth, to the way things really are and how they’re being played by the rich, and the fact that Boomers have taken almost everything and that diminished lifestyles and economic security are being bequeathed to Genx and GenY for decades to come, and that the best is definitely over. The infra-structure that once provided decent, fair-minded quality of life to middle-class people in this country is disintegrating. The game is rigged. This is the fall of the Roman Empire.
All largely because of impediments to logical, intelligent governing put up by the knee-jerk, mule-like, corporate-kowtowing mentality of Tea-Bagger types and their 60 or so looney-tunes Congresspersons now in office. We’ve truly become a South American society of rightist oligarchs, angry lefties, disillusioned wage-earners, retirement-age fuddies and struggling, debt-smothered have-nots, and the rightist boobs will never understand that they’re primarily the problem. The deficit-reduction deal will almost certainly hurt growth and kill jobs, most analysts are saying. And the radical right will own this when it happens. This level of ideological denial is no longer appalling — it’s become lethal. Ignoramuses can no longer be tolerated. The right is killing this country, things have gotten really crazy, and Obama will never stand up to them.
A second Civil War would be an incredibly destructive thing, but it would feel so good.
Can we do that? I mean, couldn’t we just give the teabaggers a small section of the country to just destroy? Anyone that wants can go, or stay and live with the liberal created government? We’ll still accept them once they’re government/economy collapses, the catch is that, since they emigrated, they can’t hold positions of office. Just to make the migration easier, maybe we could assume the conservatives need to start moving southward, and the liberals north. Sounds legit.
1. live longer. studies show that on average vegetarians and vegans live 6 years longer than meat eaters. 2. land consumption. 20 vegans can live off the same amount of land required by one meat eater. 3. water consumption. it takes 25 gallons of water to produce 1lb of wheat & 2500 gallons to produce 1lb of meat. 4. toxins. meat contains antibiotics, hormones & toxins produced by stress & pesticide residues that become concentrated from all the crops they have eaten. 5. food poison. 80% of food poisoning is due to infected meat. 6. heart disease. vegetarians have 24% reduced risk of getting heart disease & vegans a 57% reduction. 7. protein. the average american eats twice as much protein as necessary for a healthy diet and much of that is from red meat. getting protein from beans and grains is much healthier and reduces the risk for osteoporosis. 8. hormones. eating animals that have been given hormones to speed growth (a common practice in the meat industry) means those hormones go into your body. not only can this disrupt the natural balance of your hormones, but some of the hormones given to animals have shown to cause tumor growth in humans. 9. antibiotics. antibiotics are frequently given to feed animals, which can lead to bacterial resistance. many of the antibiotics used to treat human infections are also used in feed animals. 10. weight loss. a healthy weight loss is a typical result of a smart vegan diet. eating vegan eliminates most of the unhealthy foods that tend to cause weight issues. 33% percent of americans are obese, while only 2% of vegans are. 11. osteoporosis. bone health depends on a balance of neither too much or too little protein, adequate calcium intake, high potassium, and low sodium. with a healthy vegan diet, all four of these points set a perfect scenario for preventing osteoporosis. 12. puberty. since 1950, girls are hitting puberty on average 4-7 years earlier and boy’s sperm counts have decreased by 25-50% due to the hormones present in non-organic meat and dairy products. 13. alzheimers. meat eaters have double the rate of alzheimers disease as vegans & vegetarians. 14. ecosystems. nitrates & pesticides used on crops grown to feed livestock end up in our rivers and vastly effect the health of micro environments and ecosystems. 15. global warming. the 1,300,000,000 cattle in the world emit 60,000,000 tons of methane per year (methane is a greenhouse gas which leads to global warming). 16. animal cruelty. the animals involved in mass industry farming are exposed to the most cruel, unsanitary and horrific conditions. if you can handle watching it, the ‘meet your meat‘ movie will give you a glance into the common practices of present day industry farming. 17. cancer. vegetarians & vegans have a 40% reduced level of cancer than the general population thought to be because they have a higher intake of vitamins A,C & E. 18. cholesterol. eliminating any food that comes from an animal and you will eliminate all dietary cholesterol from your diet (heart disease is the leading cause of death in america today). 19. rain forests. if they continue to clear american forests to raise cattle at the present rate, in 50 years there will be none left. 20. energy. when following a healthy vegan diet, you will find your energy is much higher.
The Washington Post and others this week published articles about the diminishing size of the tea party movement. WaPo bemoaned the tea party’s “outsized” influence in Congress and pointed to a recent New York Times poll that showed 18% “support” nationwide for the Tea Party. But what does that number really mean? For more perspective, let’s look at a Gallup Poll from this week.
from CNS News:
The percentage of Americans who expressly state that they are supporters of the Tea Party movement is currently about as large at 22 percent of the population as the 21 percent who say they are liberals, according to recent but separate Gallup polls.
Meanwhile, at 41 percent of the population, according to Gallup, self-described conservatives outnumber both Tea Party movement supporters and liberals by nearly 2-to-1.
The Gallup poll did indicate fewer people identifying themselves as “supporters” of the Tea Party movement than at this time last year. However, as we have pointed out recently, the number of people identifying themselves as “conservative” is growing. Currently, Gallup shows 41% of Americans describing themselves as “conservative” as opposed to 21% who consider themselves “liberal” or 36% who call themselves “moderate.”
So, what can we draw from this? For starters, the Tea Party as the spontaneous bursts of mass protest that we saw during the healthcare debate is less noticeable than it was a year ago. The Tea Party has instead gotten more organized, worked on electing people to Congress, shifted towards activist training, and in some cases officially registered as lobbying groups. Meanwhile, the media has done an effective job of “Palinizing” the Tea Party. Note all the recent “tea party is a bunch of hostage-taking terrorists” talk from mainstream media and members of Congress. Nobody wants to identify themselves as a terrorist or “teabagger.”
Despite all this, the Tea Party still enjoys support from 22% of the American public, which is larger than the group of people who identify themselves as “liberals.” You won’t see that printed in the Washington Post, but the facts are the facts. Whether the media likes it or not and regardless if it’s known as the “tea party” or something else, conservatism is here to stay.
Bad news. I want to do something but I don’t know how or what.
OK, that’s no surprise to anyone who’s been awake over the last decade. But the paper goes beyond that to put forward some theories about why conservative white men (CWM) are so loathe to accept climate change. The explanation is some mix of the following, all of which overlap in various ways:
First there’s the “white male effect” — generally speaking, white males are less concerned with a variety of risks. This probably has to do with the fact that they are less exposed to risk than other demographics, what with running things and all.
Then, as Chris Mooney notes, there’s the “social dominance orientation” of conservatives, who see social life as following the law of the jungle. One’s choice is to dominate or be dominated; that is the natural order of things. Such folk are leery of climate change solutions premised on fairness or egalitarianism.
Then there are the well-understood “system-justifying tendencies” of conservatives. The authors explain that conservatives …
… strongly display tendencies to justify and defend the current social and economic system. Conservatives dislike change and uncertainty and attempt to simplify complexity. Further, conservative white males have disproportionately occupied positions of power within our economic system. Given the expansive challenge that climate change poses to the industrial capitalist economic system, it should not be surprising that conservative white males’ strong system-justifying attitudes would be triggered to deny climate change.
Finally, there’s “identity-protective cognition,” a notion borrowed from Dan Kahan at Yale. (See this PDF.) Here’s how Kahan and colleagues sum it up:
We propose that variance in risk perceptions — across persons generally, and across race and gender in particular — reflects a form of motivated cognition through which people seek to deflect threats to identities they hold, and roles they occupy, by virtue of contested cultural norms.
“Motivated cognition” refers to reasoning done in service of justifying an already held belief or goal. It helps explain why the CWM who know the most about climate science are the most likely to reject it; they learn about it in order to reject it. See Chris Mooney’s great piece on that. Point being: when facts (or the implications of those facts) threaten people’s social identities, they tend to dismiss the facts rather than the identity.
To all these reasons, I’d add “epistemic closure,” the extraordinary way that the modern right has constructed a self-contained, hermetically sealed media environment in which conservatives can be protected from ever encountering a contrary view. It’s an accelerant to all the tendencies described above.
Anyway, as you can see, the rejection of climate science among CWM is basically overdetermined. Climate change threatens their values, their privileges, and their worldview. They are reacting as one would expect them to react.
Wow this is so fascinating. I’ve never been able to really figure out the climate-change denial position or its douche-ier offshoot the “non-man made climate change” position.
"Here, we use an extensive dataset of 1,372 climate researchers and their publication and citation data to show that 97–98% of the climate researchers most actively publishing in the ﬁeld support the tenets of ACC (Anthropogenic (aka man-made) Climate Change) outlined by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change."
So yeah, I’m sorry but I really think we should be basing our policy on climate change based on what 97-98% of climate scientists believe. Because I’m sure there’s no way an evil company with a vested interest in being able to pollute as much as they want could possibly pay off a small minority of scientists and then give those scientists tv appearances (on channels they probably already own) to make it appear that they speak for more than 2-3% of the scientific community. Nope, no way that could happen!
And honestly, let’s take possible-to-likely corruption out of the picture. There is a 2-3 to 100 chance that you, the climate-change denier, are right that ACC is bunk and all we did was either waste money improving our infrastructure while reducing our dependence on fossil fuel or through inaction wasted no money. However, there is a 97-98 to 100 chance that we’re right and we either save the planet through improving our infrastructure while reducing our dependence on fossil fuel or through inaction destroy all life on our planet. Really shouldn’t be all that hard of a choice.