[Surfside] (no subject)

Roman Zimmermann roman@waldenweb.com
Wed, 20 Nov 2002 21:22:04 -0600

Michael Pollan has written a few other articles for the New York Times 
Magazine.  One of them chronicles the life of a steer, which he bought 
as research for the article, from insemination to slaughter [1].  A 
second looks at how organic agriculture in the U.S. has shifted from 
small producer to industrial farms, leading to lower prices and wider 
availability for organic produce, but losing some of the ideals and 
goals that the organic movement started with [2].  In essence, the 
efficiencies of modern industrial agriculture come at too dear a price 
in aesthetics and morality.

[1] http://www.nytimes.com/2002/03/31/magazine/31BEEF.html
[2] http://www.nytimes.com/2001/05/13/magazine/13ORGANIC.html

Postscript: This was originally sent to booksmarks@paulm.com, call it 
collateral damage, rather than the mailing list, which was the intended 

Paul Makepeace wrote:

>Michael Pollan's article on humans' relationship with animals summarizes
>the principle moral ideas of the various camps, from the capitalist
>factories to animal rights campaigners as a series of quite entertaining
>defensive rebuttals to the books he's reading at dinner (steak), _Animal
>Liberation_ by Peter Singer.
>There is some insightful commentary on the paradox of vegetarianism and
>veganism that adoption of those practices would cause more animal deaths
>than by a carnivorous diet. Veganism still results in deaths of field
>mice in wheat harvesters.
>The overall view is not that killing animals is necessarily bad but that
>their suffering during their life is something to be avoided (which as
>it happens is my view since I started eating chickens again when I
>arrived in Texas).
> `` For any animal, happiness seems to consist in the opportunity to
>    express its creaturely character -- its essential pigness or
>    wolfness or chickenness.''
>In that vein he investigates a farm where various animals, chickens,
>pigs, etc are rotated in the land in a symbiotic manner. He even
>watches some slaughtering. Fascinating stuff.
>http://www.nytimes.com/2002/11/10/magazine/10ANIMAL.html (11 webpages)