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Showing posts from November, 2017

Animal Welfare Reforms Are Looking Significantly Better for Animals (and Worse for Gary Francione)

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Supporters of welfare reform campaigns by animal advocacy organizations got a nice piece of evidence last month that deserves more attention than it's gotten in effective animal advocacy circles.  To cast things in sloppy strokes, a longstanding feud between "welfarists" and "abolitionists" has been over whether welfare reforms help or hurt animal agriculture. Abolitionists argue that reforms actually help the industry–if not, why would the industry adopt them? We'll probably never have a definite answer to this question, but economic analyses of one of the biggest animal welfare laws in U.S. history–California's Proposition 2–give reason for animal advocates to move toward the welfarist view.

From the paper, "The Impact of Farm Animal Housing Restrictions on Egg Prices, Consumer Welfare, and Production in California":


Twenty months after implementation of the [animal welfare] laws, the number of egg-laying hens and total egg production in Calif…

Poland's Nationalist March

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Poland had a 60,000-person nationalist march Saturday, something that hits close to home for me since my family comes from the Poland/Ukraine border, and nearly all of my great-grandfather’s (who I knew) family was likely killed in Auschwitz. The march is terrifying, but I don't find it surprising based on my experience visiting Krakow a few years ago.

I went to Krakow largely to visit Auschwitz but also, to a small degree, to see the region where my ancestors lived (even if they did not have a connection to Krakow itself).

My visit to Auschwitz was highly commercial: people smiled for pictures by the “Arbeit Macht Frei” gate, and we of course exited through the gift shop. People on my tour were uncomfortable when I put rocks on memorial sites in keeping with Jewish tradition. When I returned from the tour and was walking around Krakow, I kept getting solicited by guides in golf carts, each one claiming to offer the best deal on a tour of Auschwitz and the Jewish quarter.
Then I visi…