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Old 13th December 2018, 08:44 PM   #121
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
It follows that every moral position depends upon axioms. And in the case of veganism, it's axioms which are not widely shared.
That's nonsense. Most people's position on any given question is dominated by received values, and the axioms that vegans hold are in fact widely shared. Most people think cruelty to animals is a problem.

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That's not a mistake, it's an observation. That's the way it is for most people, on both sides.
A few posts ago you wanted to argue that rational argumentation about questions of moral considerability was impossible ("There's no rational answer to that question"). Now you seem to want to argue that it's impractical instead, because most people won't do the work.

You understand that these two claims are miles apart, right?

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No, I have it correct, you're confused about how people actually operate.
No, the problem is that you don't have any idea what you're talking about, but you've decided to talk about it anyway.
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Old 13th December 2018, 09:12 PM   #122
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
You have missed my point entirely.

We need to use bees to fertilize crops, but we don't need to eat their honey. Eating their honey is completely optional. But it's also an option we can exercise without any negative impact on the environment. The arguments for or against eating honey have absolutely nothing to do with the environment. It's a purely moral question, the answer to which depends upon your moral axioms. Is it OK to "exploit" insects, or is it not OK to do so? There is no rational answer to that question, you either think it is or it isn't. You asked why we can't discuss veganism rationally, but we cannot do so because it's inherently a non-rational topic.
I see (and mostly agree with) your point, but it also depends on what the base axioms you're working from are. There may be some whose axiom is that exploiting insects is wrong, but I think more vegans are working from an axiom that is closer to viewing suffering as morally wrong, from which they reason that exploiting animals in general is wrong. Whether insects suffer, then, becomes an important question*, and both facts and reasoning enter into the discussion.

*as does the question of whether or not our exploitation of them increases their suffering.
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Old 13th December 2018, 09:19 PM   #123
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Originally Posted by Beelzebuddy View Post
People tend to waste their time with ineffectual but close-at-hand answers instead of trying to understand the problem and taking the most effective steps to resolve it. Which, now that I mention it, people tend to be moralizing jerks there as well, since it's always something they're already doing and they want everyone else to do it too.
Yeah, that's something I've certainly noticed as well. You get people who go on international trips to for fun several times/year moralising about using a plastic bag when you do grocery shopping. It's weird.
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Old 13th December 2018, 09:22 PM   #124
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
I see (and mostly agree with) your point, but it also depends on what the base axioms you're working from are. There may be some whose axiom is that exploiting insects is wrong, but I think more vegans are working from an axiom that is closer to viewing suffering as morally wrong, from which they reason that exploiting animals in general is wrong. Whether insects suffer, then, becomes an important question*, and both facts and reasoning enter into the discussion.

*as does the question of whether or not our exploitation of them increases their suffering.
Veganism does not admit exceptions. If you allow for exceptions, it isn't veganism anymore, even if there is large overlap.
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Old 13th December 2018, 09:41 PM   #125
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
Veganism does not admit exceptions. If you allow for exceptions, it isn't veganism anymore, even if there is large overlap.
But that doesn't mean that they got to veganism from the axiom that exploiting animals is wrong, it could be that they concluded that exploiting animals is wrong, without exception, based on other axioms (like that suffering is wrong).

That conclusion may not be valid, but if it's not axiomatic you can have that discussion.

Maybe after that discussion you'll find a vegan become a vegan about everything except honey (and beeswax? Silk?). Maybe you'll even convince them that eating clams makes sense based on their moral system. You may say that person would then no longer be a vegan, but that's fine. I'm just saying that it's possible for them to be reasoned out of (at least some part of) their position because, at least in some cases, it's a position that includes reason.

There's nothing contradictory about the existence of vegans who are vegans in this way rather than in a way that cannot engage in discussion because their views on veganism are axiomatic. The vegans I've met or listened to have generally been this sort, or at least seemed to be to me, rather than the sort you are talking about.
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Last edited by Roboramma; 13th December 2018 at 09:43 PM.
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Old 13th December 2018, 11:25 PM   #126
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
...The vegans I've met or listened to have generally been this sort, or at least seemed to be to me, rather than the sort you are talking about.
Really? Google 30 bananas a day and get back to me.
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Old 14th December 2018, 12:36 AM   #127
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Originally Posted by varwoche View Post
That's a new one on me.

My wife is vegan. As a matter of convenience, my diet is frequently vegan. I'm not aware this costs more than non vegan. I assumed it cost less actually. I could be wrong.
Certainly In the UK if you want to swap basic convenience non-vegan foods for vegan convenience foods it will cost you a lot more. By basic I am talking about cheap sausages, burgers, pies, pasta bakes and the like.
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Old 14th December 2018, 01:00 AM   #128
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
I love the whole "Oh so would you kill the animals yourself?" line.

First of all... yeah I've slaughtered animals before. Not that big of a deal.

Secondly are you gonna go pick fruit with migrant workers?
I am actually only a generation away from "personally" killing animals for food and products. My grand parents were temporary farm tenants (they worked vacent farms for land owners whilst the owners looked for new tenants) so my mother grew up on working farms, she killed chickens herself, my uncle was a butcher that had his own slaughter house at the back of his butchers until the 1970s, I've seen him slaughter animals. I've gutted and cleaned freshly killed chickens and rabbits for food.

The idea that we would stop eating meat and using animal products if we had to get our hands personally "dirty" is of course easily disproven by anyone with an interest in history.

Veganism in countries like the UK are a hard sell for non-moral reasons, a couple of non moral reasons, the first being we learn what we like to eat at a young age so most people are raised on non-vegan foods and therefore the "substitute" foods taste bad/wrong, and secondly cost of non-vegan convenience foods. (Please don't mistake convenience foods as meaning junk food.)
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Old 14th December 2018, 01:01 AM   #129
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Originally Posted by Olmstead View Post
Striving to be as vegan as possible might be the best way for an individual to help prevent climate change?
Not having kids is the easiest and biggest impact any individual could have.
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Old 14th December 2018, 03:27 AM   #130
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
What's wrong with someone noticing that a choice they made for moral reasons is also the best choice for other reasons, and then pointing out those other reasons to others?
Nothing wrong with it. I didn't say it was.

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You said "once you've done that, you can claim to have made a difference", implying that without doing that, one won't have made a difference.
Indeed. But unless you want to be pointlessly pedantic, I'm sure you can understand that this doesn't literally mean no difference, since everything you do makes a difference somewhere. Clearly I'm responding to the person's claim that VEGANISM IS THE BEST WAY TO FIGHT CLIMATE CHANGE FOR AN INDIVIDUAL.

It's incredible how quickly people lose track of conversations.
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Old 14th December 2018, 05:03 AM   #131
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Nothing wrong with it. I didn't say it was.



Indeed. But unless you want to be pointlessly pedantic, I'm sure you can understand that this doesn't literally mean no difference, since everything you do makes a difference somewhere. Clearly I'm responding to the person's claim that VEGANISM IS THE BEST WAY TO FIGHT CLIMATE CHANGE FOR AN INDIVIDUAL.

It's incredible how quickly people lose track of conversations.
I certainly agree with you that veganism isn't the best way to fight climate change. I think we also agree that personal life choices aren't the best way to fight climate change.

Beyond that agreement, I may have misunderstood, but I thought you were arguing that if one doesn't take the most effective method toward fighting climate change available, one shouldn't take action in less effective ways.

Personally I'm not really interested in political action, even though as you say it's probably more effective than anything else we as individuals could do. But I might be willing to be more conscious about personal energy usage and dietary choices, even though that would probably have less impact.

If you think the above is a reasonable stance to take, then I apologise for misreading you, it wouldn't be the first time I've done so.
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Old 14th December 2018, 06:27 AM   #132
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
I certainly agree with you that veganism isn't the best way to fight climate change. I think we also agree that personal life choices aren't the best way to fight climate change.

Beyond that agreement, I may have misunderstood, but I thought you were arguing that if one doesn't take the most effective method toward fighting climate change available, one shouldn't take action in less effective ways.
No that's not what I meant. But since Olmstead seemed to care about doing good for the environment, I suggested that being vegan wasn't the best way to do it. That doesn't mean he can't be vegan as well.

Quote:
Personally I'm not really interested in political action, even though as you say it's probably more effective than anything else we as individuals could do. But I might be willing to be more conscious about personal energy usage and dietary choices, even though that would probably have less impact.
Excellent. I'll try to do the same as well. However, no way I'm giving up air conditioning. Heat just doesn't agree with me.

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If you think the above is a reasonable stance to take, then I apologise for misreading you, it wouldn't be the first time I've done so.
If we always agreed and understood each other right away, it'd be rather boring.
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Old 14th December 2018, 06:29 AM   #133
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Originally Posted by Olmstead View Post
Summary for those who don't want to read my wall of text :

Thereís evidence that a vegan diet could potentially help reduce the effects of climate change to a significant degree, but this is often outright dismissed, even by people who feel strongly about the necessity to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Are the reasons for this dismissal similar to the reasons people have to deny climate change, i.e. a refusal to give up something they consider indispensable, both in their personal lives and to the world as a whole (e.g. the economy)?
Ethics and moralizing aside about meat eating; this is a good question that raises additional questions.
What 'effects' are we looking to reduce by a vegan diet? CO2 emissions, environment impact, economic? What are we measuring to show reduction of climate impact?
If we're just concerned about CO2 can we compare the emissions of say a 50 acre rice farm vs. a 50 acre cattle ranch or hog farm?
Having been around both, I can say it takes more internal combustion equipment to maintain, plant and harvest 50 acres of rice than 50 acres or livestock.
What are the CO2 emissions involved in the transport/shipping via truck or train to market or processing?
What about the processing? What is the impact of a rib-eye vs. making a rice cake?
How many people does it take to work a rice farm vs. livestock?
If we assume it's rural, they all will most likely have to drive a car to work.
I don't know the answers to most of these basic questions, but seems like they should be answered in some form or at least considered in asking the question about impact to climate change.
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Old 14th December 2018, 07:02 AM   #134
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A very important point that I have not seen mentioned is that animals are a renewed resource. For every steer we kill for meat another one is raised which sequesters the same amount of carbon during its lifetime as the one we ate.

This also applies to forestry and agriculture, as long as we are renewing the stocks then the net effect is zero. The only portions of farming, livestock or forestry that create a significant atmospheric carbon increase are the portions done using fossil carbon. Frankly the difference in the carbon impact among those industries is insignificant and all of them combined is a rounding error in the climate impacts of releasing fossil carbon.

All these silly climate saving ideas are a distraction allowing too many people to ignore or distract form the real problem. We DO NOT need to worry about things that are part of the natural carbon cycles, we need to worry about the stuff that is not part of the natural carbon cycles, fossil carbon usage.
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Old 14th December 2018, 07:30 AM   #135
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Originally Posted by Tony99 View Post
Ethics and moralizing aside about meat eating; this is a good question that raises additional questions.
What 'effects' are we looking to reduce by a vegan diet? CO2 emissions, environment impact, economic? What are we measuring to show reduction of climate impact?
If we're just concerned about CO2 can we compare the emissions of say a 50 acre rice farm vs. a 50 acre cattle ranch or hog farm?
Having been around both, I can say it takes more internal combustion equipment to maintain, plant and harvest 50 acres of rice than 50 acres or livestock.
What are the CO2 emissions involved in the transport/shipping via truck or train to market or processing?
What about the processing? What is the impact of a rib-eye vs. making a rice cake?
How many people does it take to work a rice farm vs. livestock?
If we assume it's rural, they all will most likely have to drive a car to work.
I don't know the answers to most of these basic questions, but seems like they should be answered in some form or at least considered in asking the question about impact to climate change.

Most of those question have been answered. In the way it is done these days, the cattle might be grazed on 50 acres with little emissions. Then held in a feedlot and fed grain. So take the emissions from the 50 acres of grazed land and add the emissions from 300 acres of cropland used to grow the corn they are fed while in the feedlot. Chickens, turkey, and pigs are held in big buildings with active ventilation, heat and cooling while being fed grain. "Harvesting" the meat is also much more energy intensive than rice, requiring a great amount of heat and refrigeration at different steps, requiring refrigeration from slaughter up until cooking, including all transportation and storage steps.

So the reality is that your 50 acre rice farm is more likely to be growing rice to be used as animal feed than it is to be growing rice to be human food.

It can be done differently than the way it currently is, with less energy used - grass fed beef, grown and slaughtered more locally. But as currently practiced in the industrialized nations, meat, poultry, dairy and egg production is very energy intensive.

Wiki:
Quote:
It takes seven pounds of feed to produce a pound of beef (live weight), compared to more than three pounds for a pound of pork and less than two pounds for a pound of chicken.[15] However, assumptions about feed quality are implicit in such generalizations. For example, production of a pound of beef cattle live weight may require between 4 and 5 pounds of feed high in protein and metabolizable energy content, or more than 20 pounds of feed of much lower quality.[14]
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Old 14th December 2018, 07:41 AM   #136
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
But that doesn't mean that they got to veganism from the axiom that exploiting animals is wrong, it could be that they concluded that exploiting animals is wrong, without exception, based on other axioms (like that suffering is wrong).

That conclusion may not be valid, but if it's not axiomatic you can have that discussion.
It doesn't matter if the conclusion follows from other axioms, there are still axioms involved which are not universally shared.

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Maybe after that discussion you'll find a vegan become a vegan about everything except honey (and beeswax? Silk?).
Which is fiddling around the edges. It cannot close the gap between a vegan and a carnivore.
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Old 14th December 2018, 07:49 AM   #137
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For Carbon footprint, chicken battery cage farming is doubtlessly better than free-range.
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Old 14th December 2018, 07:53 AM   #138
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Originally Posted by The Great Zaganza View Post
For Carbon footprint, chicken battery cage farming is doubtlessly better than free-range.
Fewer antibiotics too - they can't peck at and injure each other.
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Old 14th December 2018, 08:25 AM   #139
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According to a 2006 study conducted by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN:

Quote:
The livestock sector ... is responsible for 18% of greenhouse gas emissions, measured in CO2 equivalent. This is a higher share than transport.
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Old 14th December 2018, 08:30 AM   #140
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Okay and? Every kid you have is another 9,441 metric tonnes of carbon to the atmosphere. Go cluck-cluck the Duggers and John & Kate, not the guys at the Sizzler.

I don't have any kids. I'll eat all the steak I want. I'm still "winning" under the rules being set here.

Quote:
A study by statisticians at Oregon State University concluded that in the United States, the carbon legacy and greenhouse gas impact of an extra child is almost 20 times more important than some of the other environment-friendly practices people might employ during their entire lives — things like driving a high mileage car, recycling, or using energy-efficient appliances and light bulbs.
https://www.livescience.com/9701-save-planet-kids.html
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Old 14th December 2018, 08:34 AM   #141
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Originally Posted by varwoche View Post
According to a 2006 study conducted by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN:
A higher share than transport?

What's the coal plant share, then?

ETA: And like Joe implied, fewer people might be the actual best solution.
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Old 14th December 2018, 08:39 AM   #142
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
And like Joe implied, fewer people might be the actual best solution.
And to be clear I'm not trying to guilt anyone for having kids, saying never have children, or argue that if you have kids you inherently go into some sort of "carbon debt" you have to get out of.

But if your entire argument is a pure utilitarian "Don't do X because it causes Y" that can't start an arbitrary point and all the other stuff you do that causes Y gets ignored.

Either "Reduce CO2" is a sacrosanct goal or it isn't. If it's a goal within context, we have to discuss the context.
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Old 14th December 2018, 08:40 AM   #143
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Originally Posted by crescent View Post
Fewer antibiotics too - they can't peck at and injure each other.
Maybe.
The main reason for antibiotics in farming is to accelerate weight gain.
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Old 14th December 2018, 08:44 AM   #144
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And then there's the fruit & veg that has a higher carbon footprint than certain meats (eg. UK tomatoes, which are grown in commercial greenhouses). How many vegan's avoid those?

Wouldn't it be better to tax those foods with a higher carbon footprint, and not just assume it's meat?
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Old 14th December 2018, 08:50 AM   #145
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Originally Posted by varwoche View Post
According to a 2006 study conducted by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN:
Wiki says they've updated that percentage down to 14.5% of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions.
"Because this emission percentage includes contributions associated with livestock used for the production of draft power, eggs, wool and dairy products, the percentage attributable to meat production alone is significantly lower, as indicated by the report's data."

"A PNAS model showed that even if animals were completely removed from US agriculture and diets, US GHG emissions would be decreased by 2.6%(or 28% of agricultural GHG emissions). This is because of the need to replace animal manures by fertilizers and to replace also other animal coproducts, and because livestock now use human-inedible food and fiber processing byproducts"

The GHG section of the wiki is fascinating and confusing. Is it saying that meat production accounts for 28% of all agricultural GHG emissions?
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Old 14th December 2018, 08:57 AM   #146
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Rice is pretty atrocious when it comes to methane emissions.
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Old 14th December 2018, 08:57 AM   #147
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
A higher share than transport?

What's the coal plant share, then?

ETA: And like Joe implied, fewer people might be the actual best solution.
If I off my kids, and come back here and re-post the study, maybe the study will then have credence.

I don't dispute the impact of each human. Nor do I hold up my personal footprint as if it informs the conversation.

There must be a named fallacy for when people reject a partial 'solution' to a complex, multi-dimensional problem, just because there are other partial 'solutions' that have more impact. Never mind, it's apt to be "cutesy poo".

(In the interest of clarity, I'm dishing at Joe, not Belz.)
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Old 14th December 2018, 09:00 AM   #148
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Originally Posted by The Great Zaganza View Post
Rice is pretty atrocious when it comes to methane emissions.
You're just a ricist.
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Old 14th December 2018, 09:01 AM   #149
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Originally Posted by varwoche View Post
There must be a named fallacy for when people reject a partial 'solution' to a complex, multi-dimensional problem, just because there are other partial 'solutions' that have more impact. Never mind, it's apt to be "cutesy poo".
It's not a fallacy when your entire argument is "Don't do X because it causes Y" and people bring up other things that cause Y in equal or greater amounts.
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Old 14th December 2018, 09:01 AM   #150
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Originally Posted by varwoche View Post
If I off my kids, and come back here and re-post the study, maybe the study will then have credence.

I don't dispute the impact of each human. Nor do I hold up my personal footprint as if it's relevant.

There must be a named fallacy for when people reject a partial 'solution' to a complex, multi-dimensional problem, just because there are other partial 'solutions' that have more impact. Never mind, it's apt to be "cutesy poo".
There sure must be. Fortunately, since no one here is doing that, you won't need to find out the name.

I'll remind you that all of these responses are based on the idea that being a vegan is the BEST way to deal with climate change as an individual. I don't think finding better ways to do that is somehow fallacious, in this context.
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Old 14th December 2018, 09:03 AM   #151
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Originally Posted by baron View Post
You're just a ricist.
Nicely done.
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Old 14th December 2018, 09:08 AM   #152
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
There sure must be. Fortunately, since no one here is doing that, you won't need to find out the name.

I'll remind you that all of these responses are based on the idea that being a vegan is the BEST way to deal with climate change as an individual. I don't think finding better ways to do that is somehow fallacious, in this context.
Fine. Please replace my verb choice "reject" with "cast shade".
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Old 14th December 2018, 09:12 AM   #153
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
I see (and mostly agree with) your point, but it also depends on what the base axioms you're working from are. There may be some whose axiom is that exploiting insects is wrong, but I think more vegans are working from an axiom that is closer to viewing suffering as morally wrong, from which they reason that exploiting animals in general is wrong. Whether insects suffer, then, becomes an important question*, and both facts and reasoning enter into the discussion.
I think the point is that you can have rational discussions about what you should do with bees only after you accept some set of moral axioms about bees. And accepting moral axioms is not - cannot be - a rational act. We can reason about the ethics of beekeeping from veganism, but we can't reason about the ethics of adopting veganism.
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Old 14th December 2018, 09:15 AM   #154
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Clearly I'm responding to the person's claim that VEGANISM IS THE BEST WAY TO FIGHT CLIMATE CHANGE FOR AN INDIVIDUAL.
Maybe the thread has moved on and I missed it, but Olmstead's claim in the OP is rather different from your all-caps version.

The way I read it, Olmstead is merely claiming that we have good reason to think that veganism might be a really good way to fight climate change, and that more effort should be made to investigate this possibility. Then he asks why that effort isn't being made.
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Old 14th December 2018, 09:17 AM   #155
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Originally Posted by varwoche View Post
Fine. Please replace my verb choice "reject" with "cast shade".
It's still functionally "I want to talk about the factors that make up your environmental impact, but not the ones that make up mine."

Right now you're the guy who starts fake coughing and fanning his hands in front of his face because someone sat down next to him and lit up a cigarette, but at the moment they sat down next to you you were smoking a cigar (or at the very least your own cigarette) and your response to someone pointing this out has been "Oh so you're saying second hand smoke isn't harmful?" or "No, no we're talking about his cigarette, not my cigar!"
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Old 14th December 2018, 09:23 AM   #156
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Originally Posted by varwoche View Post
Fine. Please replace my verb choice "reject" with "cast shade".
No, that's not what you got wrong. This has been explained several times by now.

No one's casting shade or rejecting the idea. We're suggesting that, if one wishes to act to reduce climate change, there exist better ways than veganism, especially after we've been told that the latter is the best way.

Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Maybe the thread has moved on and I missed it, but Olmstead's claim in the OP is rather different from your all-caps version.
Post 75:

Originally Posted by Olmstead View Post
Striving to be as vegan as possible might be the best way for an individual to help prevent climate change?
That is exactly what my all-caps version said.
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Old 14th December 2018, 09:32 AM   #157
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
It's not a fallacy when your entire argument is "Don't do X because it causes Y" and people bring up other things that cause Y in equal or greater amounts.
But that's a useless thing to bring up.

"You should just walk to the store that's just 10 minutes away instead of taking the car each time."

"Yeah, but you have a kid, and I have none so shut up."
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Old 14th December 2018, 09:39 AM   #158
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Originally Posted by Olmstead View Post
But that's a useless thing to bring up.

"You should just walk to the store that's just 10 minutes away instead of taking the car each time."

"Yeah, but you have a kid, and I have none so shut up."
But it's perfectly fine to do the reverse?

It's not like I started a thread calling people who have children climate change deniers.
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Old 14th December 2018, 09:43 AM   #159
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I'll see your carnivore and raise you 2 particularly flatulent vegan children.
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Old 14th December 2018, 09:44 AM   #160
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
But it's perfectly fine to do the reverse?

It's not like I started a thread calling people who have children climate change deniers.
But I didn't either ...
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