AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!! I cannot fucking TAKE another MINUTE of Jeremy fucking BENTHAM! This article in NY Times Magazine, right? Quoting Bentham’s famous “can they suffer?” passage as the wellsprint of animal rights. May I remind the world that Bentham was the stone nutburger who dreamed up the Panopticon prison system (a system so inhumane it led to insanity and suicide amongst those exposed, not to mention the starting-point for much modern surveillance theory)? That the man had himself STUFFED AND MOUNTED IN A CASE after death with his HEAD between his FEET?! NO MORE BENTHAM! I declare an ETHICS STRIKE!
As for the rest of the article, it’s lots of fun. The author (Michael Pollan, always a pleasure) brings some interesting points and is refreshingly pro-meat in some respects (free-range farming, baby!). And he gets a few good shots at the lunatic fur-fringe (eg., animal-rights folk who try to make their cats — excuse me, their “animal companions” — vegetarian while shrugging their shoulders at mass extinctions). And by the way? Bentham was a carnivore, proving that even a stopped clock or a stuffed Utilitarian can be right on occasion.