In our city, Leeds in the West Riding of Yorkshire, there are a group of well meaning and earnest folk who comprise the Alliance For Green Socialism. These good folk are genuinely and passionately concerned for the poor and the underprivileged. Unfortunately, they have swallowed hook line and sinker the idea that human CO2 and other greenhouse gas emissions are damaging to the planet. What is so tragic about this is that it is the poor who will suffer the most.
The human induced/anthropogenic global warming bandwagon seems to be gathering an ever present momentum, carrying on like a madman in control of a steam-roller wanting to stamp down on activities which have long been regarded as completely harmless and benign and now even as commonplace as eating meat!
One of the most striking examples of this follows from Lord Stern of Brentford’s comments vis-à-vis meat eating:
“….meat is a wasteful use of water and creates a lot of greenhouse gases. It puts enormous pressure on the world’s resources. A vegetarian diet is better….” Predicting: “….I think it’s important that people think about what they are doing and that includes what they are eating….” “….I am 61 now and attitudes towards drinking and driving have changed radically since I was a student. People change their notion of what is responsible. They will increasingly ask about the carbon content of their food….” “….I am not sure that people fully understand what we are talking about or the kind of changes that will be necessary….”
Su Taylor, of the Vegetarian Society predictably was delighted with Stern’s comments: “….What we choose to eat is one of the biggest factors in our personal impact on the environment….” “….Meat uses up a lot of resources and a vegetarian diet consumes a lot less land and water. One of the best things you can do about climate change is reduce the amount of meat in your diet…..”
Of course a major problem we have is that the “climate change agenda” appeals to a group of people who are passionate about controlling people. Unfortunately this is a common human characteristic which goes a long way to explaining totalitarian societies. It should therefore be no surprise to find that the hard-core Marxist-Leninists should find “green politics” so appealing. Furthermore, there is another attraction. Many of these folk are either agnostics or atheists. The human induced/anthropogenic global warming seems to have taken on somewhat the air of a religion – which is made all the dangerous as it appears to answer the faith needs of many young people who have been brought up without being taught anything much about the traditional Christian culture of these British Isles. Worse, many of the clerics in the churches themselves have seemingly bought into the idea of human induced/anthropogenic global warming.
So future generations are all going to be vegetablists then ?
We do not think so. Remember the old saying: “You can lead a horse to water; but you can’t make it drink?”
We would suggest we look to other examples of human consumption where the humans have doggedly refused to “give up”. Two obvious examples are smoking and alcohol.
Successive governments have repeatedly sought to discourage smokers and drinkers from smoking and drinking. Generally by the stick approach: telling them that it will kill them – which is true and by taxing them. Doubtless the new green nannies will hector the meat eaters – which is most people – that this will kill the planet – which is not true and by taxing them. Seventy years ago during World War Two the majority of adults smoked. Today it is a minority. It has however taken seventy years of hectoring and taxes. And this is for a product that kills you! Just think how long it will take the authoritarian greenies to get the majority of Britons to give up something which is perfectly healthy and to adopt a vegetarian diet – which if not properly managed – is unhealthy!
Of course, if the greenies get they way things will change. Meat production will become more expensive. This of course will mean that the rich will still be alright – but those on low or modest incomes will find themselves eating little or no meat.
One can make certain predictions about the way the situation may develop. Such predictions are not made using “computer models” just a mature understanding of human nature and economics.
Clearly, if the green agenda obsessed politicians go along this route the food industry will react and plan accordingly. Such oligopsomists as Tesco will provide ready meals using meat substitutes. This is likely what the poor will consume. The rich will continue to purchase meat from high quality butchers. Such shops will move upmarket and will offer delivery services.
What else can one predict ?
A great increase in “cattle, sheep and pig rustling” – stealing livestock by criminal gangs. This type of crime will become increasingly attractive to criminals. Why ?
Firstly, with meat as a luxury product there will be many (on the inner city housing estates) who, unable to afford expensive joints will be attracted to illicit suppliers.
Secondly, in urban areas there is widespread CCTV surveillance – stealing sheep in Arkengarthdale would seem less risky.
Thirdly, look at the present situation where criminals smuggle in cheap liquor and cigarettes. Smuggling these goods have an appeal for the average criminal. The criminal realises only too well that if he gets caught smuggling a large quantity of a class A drug such as heroin he is looking at “….an awful lot of porridge….” If however he gets caught smuggling in a large quantity of cigarettes he is looking at a far shorter sentence.
Clearly, there will be public health issues here. As with the present day illegal drug peddlers, criminals pay little heed to health and safety and product quality. The stolen animals are likely to be slaughtered in a very substandard way. Knives and other instruments may be inadequately cleaned. The meat may be unfit for consumption due to being stored in poorly refrigerated areas. All this will constitute a very great risk to the people buying the illicit product.
How can one be so certain ? You ask.
Simple. Look back in history. During the prohibition era in the U.S.A., illicit bootleggers produced their own liquor as well as smuggling liquor into the country. In both cases the consumers were at risk. The illicit brew was often adulterated or based on alcohol not meant for human consumption. Smuggled liquor was often mixed or “cut” with such alcohol. The result. Many Americans died or were seriously ill as a result.
What is so tragic is all this misery will be brought down upon these poor people for nothing – just a theory that can best be described as claptrap.