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Comment Re:The sanity in vegetarianism. (Score 1) 420

As I said earlier, I have no problems eating what I kill, I have done this extensively in the past, just as your lion eats an antelope rather than going to the local lion supermarket. I've killed and eaten animals with the technological advantage of a gun, a knife or a trap in the absense of an actual predatorial body capable of killing 'game' alone. Unlike the lion, we're rubbish at hunting without prostheses.

All said, if you think 'farming', with or without antibiotics, corn-fed-cows, trucks and transport, growth hormones and selective breeding has anything to do with this romantic 'food chain', I'm afraid we're on vastly different pages. Farming represents the antithesis of a food chain, a gross and inhumane abstraction away from the complex biodiversity that seeded our species in the first place. Farming, it is widely understood, is the greatest threat to biodiversity worldwide, 'grass fed' or not. You still need a lot of cleared land, land with grass, and thousands of litres of water for every kg of meat yielded pumped in from elsewhere. Farming continues to be a very environmentally selfish thing to fund.

Nice chatting. I'm signing out on this thread.

Comment Re:The sanity in vegetarianism. (Score 1) 420

You are comparing eating something our bodies have evolved to eat over millions of years to slavery and women's rights?!

Yes. In order to morally justify eating another animal one inevitably depends on a spiritual power granting those rights. As a moral atheist, I see no reason why a pig should not be able to live a life despite the interests of man. I cannot see why a bull should have any more rights than a person, or vice versa. To say otherwise depends on some higher order, which, in other words, wanders down the garden path away from science and into hokuspokus. Like any of us, were I truly starving I would find myself caring little for morals, and would likely not hesitate to eat any walking or swimming thing around

Slavery is thousands of years old and has been abolished. Skin colour is no longer a valid basis for discrimination. The institutionalised prejudice of women, once granted by God, is also on the way out, at least in the West. The farming of animals is unnecessary with an abundance of more practical and far less environmentally damaging sources of calories and proteins. Just as with slavery, rampant racism, imperialism and sexism, I find the prejudice against our fellow animals (and their environment)- the mass, organised slaughter of other male and female mammals- to be abject and morally corrupt.

I expect we'll be forced to advance beyond such selfish stupidity, after a planet-wide environmental collapse.

Comment Re:The sanity in vegetarianism. (Score 1) 420

Eating grains is what allowed our population to explode.

Please provide a link.

I think you'll find that it's not humans eating grains which has allowed our population to explode but grain production, most of which is fed to livestock. People that eat meat are the bread and butter of the monocrop sector.

To reiterate, In the U.S., animals are fed more than 80 percent of the corn and 95 percent of the oats grown. The world's cattle alone consume a quantity of food estimated to be equal to the caloric needs of 8.7 billion people, more than the entire human population on Earth. Agriculture, as it is now is the source of tthe monocrop problem and its impact on bbiodiversity.

I, as a longtime vegetarian, fund the tiniest proportion of monocrop grain compared to meat eaters like yourself. In fact on analysis, the only real crop of that genre that I do dip into is soy, of which I consume around a gram a day when averaged over a week. Most of this is in the form of soymilk (just 2.5g soy protein/litre!). People that eat biscuits, breakfast cereals, chocolate and even non-meat fast-food consume much more than that a day, lest of all all the soy that the animals they eat consume. I think you have weird ideas about where monocrop grain actually ends up.. It's not in vegetarians, for the most part!

I wish you the best in your efforts to find a way to make farming sustainable at today's level of meat consumption. Sadly I think it's an absolute pipe dream, given the research I've read and observing how the non-industrialised farming community I grew up in is collapsing under industrial competition from elsewhere, competition which meets demand.

A sustainable farming mandate == much less meat for everyone. The research is out there..

Comment Re:The sanity in vegetarianism. (Score 1) 420

A diet that includes some meat is actually a more efficient use of land.

I read the article you link to and see it is very location specific indeed. In any case it doesn't have any real statistics and contradicts much of the data in the UN Food and Agriculture Report, at least when generalised to a pan-American or Europe-wide geography (where I live).

Simply put, grass fed cow parts are nutritionally ideal but take much longer to raise (more water and resources over a lifetime) and consume larger amounts of space overall due to the comparative inefficiencies of grain vs grass. At current rates of meat consumption we'd need to raze a hell of a lot more forest to support this ideal form of producing edible animal pieces, even if we did turn those monocrops to grass.

To reiterate, already at today's rates of consumption -continuing with ~80% grain-supplemented feed for the majority of animals eaten- conservative estimates place 50% of all tenable land on earth will be dedicated to chicken, pig and cow parts by 2050. One (luxury) food stuff with a ~54:1 protein inefficiency ratio!

Again, the world agricultural authority, comprised of highly respected scientists, The FAO, says that agriculture is at the heart of both every environmental stress on the planet, floods, acid rain, erosion, pollution of water ways, deforestation..

In the absense of meat-trees (which I fully support) there's only one thing to do to ensure future generations of humans have a breathable, bareable, biologically diverse world to live in: eat less, ideally no, meat. It's not working and solely eating grass fed animals are the inverse of a solution to this effect. Sometimes we have to make sacrifices, disciplining our hedonism and dietary vanities to look after the big picture. Many traditions prove to be stupid when shifted into a contemporary context, meat eating in the 21st century is one of them and will be remembered as such, along-with human slavery, inequality to women and lead pipes. A very smart thing to do to reduce environmental impact of this selfish diet is to raise your kids vegetarian. Kids I've known raised vegetarian think meat is a bizarre hedonism, right into adulthood!

I'm curious, what do you eat if you don't eat meat and don't eat monocrops? Do you grow all of your own food?

I live in a city with very cheap and high quality markets, Eating out is also easy. I don't have a garden, though I'd love one. I try to eat an entirely raw, dairy-free meal at least once a day, not out of dietary convention but simply because I am a faster thinker and feel physically stronger if I do.

A typical day might start with brown sunflower-seed bread with olive oil, rock salt and a thin slice of Queso de Manchego or porridge and chopped banana with a little soy milk and brown sugar. I'll often have a soy-milk latte or black espresso, made at home. Lunch may include a fresh chopped celery and bulgar salad with walnuts, volcanic salt and olive-oil/honey dressing. I live in an area with excellent turkish food, so if I'm out I might have a falafel with pickles or haloumi and oven baked potato wedges thrown in. Maybe I'll grab some lebanese or whip together a fresh mozzarella ball, cherry tomato and basil salad. For dinner I might have a green curry with coconut milk, sweet courgette, green sprouts and button mushrooms, tempeh or seitan on a bed of black rice; oven baked Parmigiani Aubergine or Setas de la Plancha with white wine marinade. To K.I.S.S I may just put together a whole grain pasta, with chopped almonds, paprika sauce and a little rocket salad on the side. Glass of wine or wheat beer follows.


Comment Re:The sanity in vegetarianism. (Score 1) 420

I don't know man. We can debate on this forever but all I have to work with is my own experience. I haven't eaten meat or fish parts in almost 22 years yet my doctor tells me year on year I'm in weirdly great shape. I'm very fit and get the flu around once a year, for a couple of days, never more. I'm rarely tired/lazy and am very productive in my chosen career.

I grew up on a farm and have eaten many animals that I myself have killed. So close was my relationship with this process that it seems abstract/unnatural/wrong to pay another to kill on my behalf. I'll only eat what I kill and if hungry enough I'd eat anything (or anyone for that matter!). We're animals like any other. To say otherwise is to reach for mythology.

The reality is sustainable grass-fed meat, satisfying a world population of meat-eaters, is a fantasy given today's consumption habits. 200 years ago, sure. Today -grass fed or not- meat takes around 7 times more land than grain to grow while we, as a species, are breeding like rabbits. Much of the world is starving, hungry for grain stupidly maldistributed into agriculture. 70% of the Amazon has been cleared for grain 90% of which is fed to cattle elsewhere. It is madness. The trick is to eat the bean before it ends up on the cow.

Agriculture is devastating the planet and I choose not to fund this. Read the UN Food and Agricultural Association's report. Conservative estimates place 50% of all tenable land on earth being dedicated to chicken, pig and cow parts by 2050. Once read, sit down for a steak, bought at your local bio-shop.

If there's one thing we need to do now, it's eat less meat. Ideally none other than that feeling creature you kill yourself.

We don't need to eat meat. It's a fetish, and a very environmentally costly one at that, given our number.

Comment Re:The sanity in vegetarianism. (Score 1) 420

More than 70 % of all corn and 85 % of all oats grown in America are fed to cattle. Researchers Gold and Porrit found that all the grains used in agriculture worldwide are enough to satisfy the caloric needs of 8.7 Billion people, more than all the people on earth.

I think Lierre Keith hasn't done her homework ;)

As a meat eater you indirectly consume vast amounts of soy, far more than a vegan. See for yourself, straight from an agricultural statistics source (end of page especially).

Comment Re:The sanity in vegetarianism. (Score 1) 420

If you want to talk about modern invention... that is a modern invention. Cultivating soy and legumes for protein, using the “killing technology of flame” to tender them up before consuming them (they almost invariably are cooked first, I might add), and taking a handful of multivitamins and dietary supplements is the quintessence of modern invention. In fact this is very nearly the first generation of humans that could successfully stay healthy and well-nourished while living in such a manner.

Hehe, I think you ought to read up on the history of vegetarianism. The Brahamins were vego for a couple of thousand years before Pythagoras discovered them and became vego himself! There are many different cultures which raise their young without meat or fish. I know several very healthy people (one an athlete for a while) that've never eaten meat or fish in their lives. Any vegetarian that needs supplements either has an innate deficiency of their own simply doesn't know how to cook for themselves..

Regarding kids and raw meat, I've seen kids reject raw beef and fish yes - I grew up on a farm. It's often mentioned as indication of our predisposition toward vegetables and fruit, not meat. It is not strong 'evidence', no. Nonetheless, you have to learn to prepare animal parts for eating to avoid sickness. It's a skill dependent on several technologies as meat starts rotting very soon after slaughter (4 hours @ ~40 degrees).


Comment Re:There are meats other than beef, you know... (Score 1) 420

There's plenty of talk out there about the protein inefficiency of meat production, which should be obvious anyway given that human edible foods (corn, grain) are fed to animals to then turn into meat. Here's a paper on the topic, citing the 54:1 Protein Inefficiency of meat production.

Interestingly enough, cows die when they eat corn for too long, which is a primary reason why they're fed all those antibiotics in the first place.

This isn't meat you're eating, it's a pharmaceutically enabled simulation of what our ancestors occasionally ate.

Also, see those pointy things at the front of your mouth? The ones maladapted to 100% plant consumption?

This is a myth. Our so-called "canine teeth" are "canine" in name only. Other plant-eaters (like gorillas, horses, and hippos) have "canines", and chimps, who are almost exclusively vegan, have massive canines compared to ours. Our early ancestors from at least four million years ago were almost exclusively vegetarian, later to become scavengers eating carrion and then hunters with Homo Erectus, making meat a part of the diet. Hunting is hard work - they only did it because of a lack of other options, often at certain times of year. Compare that to the couch-squatting meat eater of today that feels akin to the great hunter of old.. Pretty silly really, especially given that agriculture (now consuming some 26% of all land area on earh) was invented just 10,000 years ago.

All omnivorism means we're capable of eating meat (useful from a survival standpoint if that's all that's available), but our bodies aren't geared for it to be a normal, significant part of our diets. (from here

You eat meat because you like it and you don't have to kill it yourself. There's no other reason to eat meat - there's no evidence to suggest that it's a vital part of a human's diet.

As someone that grew up on a small farm trained in killing the animals I ate, I can say I doubt most meat eaters would have the guts to really get behind their precious meat diet anyway - blubbering with guilt in no time. We had tough kids from the city staying with us that would run away screaming, hands over their ears, when we slit the throat of a pig.

In modern times, meat is just a dietary fetish gone horribly wrong.

Oh, and that last link to said NOTHING about renal/kidney failure (neither word occurs anywhere), and nothing about the hazards of excess protein consumption. (It did refer to excess fat consumption)

Indeed, I meant to add another link in there. Too hasty! Here you go.

Comment Re:The sanity in vegetarianism. (Score 1) 420

No, it’s culturally repugnant. And even so, plenty of people still consume raw meat on a regular basis.

No, it is indeed instinctually repugnant. Eating raw meat is something that is learned, as is eating meat in the first instance. As evidence, young children readily reach for raw fruit but never raw meat: we know that without the killing technology of flame it should be rejected.

The eating of raw mammal meat is a modern fashion enabled through refrigeration, antibiotics and sanitation (80% of all antibiotics sold in the US are fed to cows and pigs): unlike carnivores we do not have teeth or claws for tearing apart the flesh. Weapons and instruments have enabled meat as a dietary option among homonids.

Meat may be 'healthier' if eaten raw, indeed. In any case, it is certainly not an essential part of a human's diet. I haven't eaten parts of animals for most of my life and have friends that have never ever eaten meat or fish. All are fit of body and host very bright minds indeed. Just as it is for them, meat is simply not something I consider edible anymore.

Comment The sanity in vegetarianism. (Score 0) 420

Vegetarians are a whole different and sad subspecies of humankind, they try to deny we've been eating meat from animals since many millions of years.

Remember that raw meat is instinctualy repugnant; it's only with the technologies of fire and weaponry that we began eating meat at all - environmental conditions positioning it as a good source of protein. All these years later, we have better, and more future proof means of satisifying our caloric and protein needs.

There are many reasons not to eat meat these days. Here are some

Meat production requires 10 to 20 times more energy per edible tonne than grain production and is estimated to have a 54:1 protein inefficiency ratio (54 units of protein are required to produce a single unit of meat protein). Each cow raised requires (directly and indirectly) 90 to 180 litres of water a day and passes 40kg of manure per kg of edible meat. It's been estimated by scientists that that 1kg (2.2 pounds) of beef is responsible for the equivalent amount of carbon dioxide emitted by the average European car every 250 kilometers, and burns enough energy to light a 100-watt bulb for nearly 20 days.

Soya has 4 times more calories than red meat so the amount of soy that could be grown using the same amount of land would feed far more people than if used to raise cows. Moreso, a meat-based diet requires 7 times more land on average than a plant-based diet. Ironically much of the meat eaten world-wide is raised on soya grain anyway. According to The United Nations Food & Agriculture Organization, livestock production is at the heart of almost every environmental stress confronting the planet: rain forest destruction, growing deserts, loss of fresh water, air and water pollution, acid rain, floods and soil erosion.

Finally, meat eaters generally consume more than twice as much protein as they need, increasing likelihood of kidney failure, cholesterol, heart failure, hypertension, diabetes, stress. Legumes, especially soybeans, contain the largest percentage of protein among the vegetable foods and are in the same range as many meats. If legumes are a central part of a vegetarian's diet, there will be plenty of enough protein in the diet.

Comment I reluctantly admit it looks pretty fine.. (Score 3, Informative) 609

I have an N900, run GNU/Linux at both home and work and will probably by an HTC Android phone sooner than later. Nonetheless the UI on the Windows Phone 7 looks pretty lovely to me. I think MS has done a fine job.

The question these days of course is not what the phone can do OOTB, but what you can install on it later. AFAIK there isn't much of an 'app ecosystem' for the platform. They're also charging device manufacturers a license fee to ship with the OS, which isn't smart in a world rapidly flowing with Android phones. I wouldn't ring the death bell just yet though - it seems the market's changing pretty fast with the iPhone losing it's fashionable appeal here in the EU now that road-workers, plumbers and unemployed single fathers have the things.

Market differentiation allows for consumer individuation - something Apple's aesthetic homogeneity, doesn't offer. Think Similar (TM).

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