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animal rights

The trouble with knowing where your food comes from

Musing about eggs, psychopaths, and why most people just don't want to know.
Yesterday I watched a TV news story about the disgusting conditions some egg-laying hens lived in, with footage from an undercover animal rights activist. This set me off on a long mental rant ... I'm a lacto-ovo-vegetarian and that makes it hard enough to plan meals in provincial Indiana. Now it was clear that I'd have to give up non-free-range eggs as well. That means no egg and cheese wake-up wraps at Dunkin Donuts, one of my staples when I go out for the day.

It occurred to me that no regular, decent human being would subject their own hens to that sickening kind of treatment if they raised their own eggs. But they don't -- and unfortunately, due to their general lack of awareness, they are perfectly willing to *buy* eggs others supply them from hens so treated. This gives people without a conscience a distinct advantage -- they save a substantial amount of money by shoving as many hens in a cage as possible and skating by with the least expense towards health and sanitation.

This is why Wal-Mart, factory food tastes like shit compared to food raised on a family farm. I remember eating free-range eggs at a health-conscious friend's house. They taste three times better than regular eggs, but they're expensive as hell. There's no way Dunkin Donuts uses free-range eggs to make their 99-cent wake-up wraps. So, yet again, I'm confronted with a situation where, because of the general unawareness of an otherwise well-meaning public, I'm going to suffer -- in this case, give up eating eggs when I go out. If *everyone* were aware of how animals are treated on factory farms, we'd have a lot more vegetarian restaurants and people would demand free-range eggs, etc. But they aren't. They don't want to know and God knows there are times when I don't blame them.

It occurred to me that we're now at a level of technology where, if only the world were run by average, normal, decent human beings, we would be living in paradise. But we're not. We've relegated the planet to a bunch of psychopaths without a conscience. Because they save a few pennies by doing horrendous things that others won't, they always come out on top. This is true in the food industry, in politics, and in the energy business.

I'll never forget a cartoon I saw outside a professor's office. It showed a CEO at his desk, looking like the cat that swallowed the canary, saying, "You want oil? We own the oil fields. You want coal? We own the coal mines. You want solar power...?" (Next panel) "Uh ... solar power isn't feasible."

So there you go. That's how these rats do it. They thrust themselves between the people and what they need, posing as indispensable middlemen. You want food? You gotta go through us. You want energy? You gotta go through us. You want God? You gotta go through us. They are the ultimate interlopers, running interference between the people and the Source. Their enemy is awareness.

Now what am I going to have for breakfast? :(

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