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In the Year of our LORD Jesus Christ
-- As of January 20, 2017
A Sigh Of Relief With The Inauguration Of Donald John Trump as President of the United States of America, And Hope For A Prosperous Future For All United States Citizens (we who are a nation called "the melting pot of the world"). We shall be great and exceptionally great again.

It is likely that the entries to this blog will be less frequent than in years past. I do intend to keep this blog active, and to offer insightful information and/or opinion (and sometimes humor and/or entertainment on occasion) when I do post.

Peace and Liberty. Semper Fidelis.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Cass Sunstein, Animal Rights and what his being Regulatory Czar might entail

At THE LAW SCHOOL of THE UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO, Cass R. Sunstein wrote “The Rights of Animals: A Very Short Primer” in August 2002. You can view the primer, free of charge in its entirety at: http://www.law.uchicago.edu/files/files/157.crs_.animals.pdf

In Cass Sunstein’s own words, with his foot-notes bracketed, he writes:
In his own words, his endnotes bracketed:

{on p. 1}
Immanuel Kant thought of animals as “man’s instruments,” deserving protection only to help human beings in their relation to one another: “He who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in his dealings with men.” [Immanuel Kant, Lectures on Ethics, trans. Louis Infield (New York: Harper Torchbooks, 1963), at 240]

Jeremy Bentham took a different approach, suggesting that mistreatment of animals was akin to slavery and racial discrimination. “The day may come when the rest of the animal creation may acquire those rights which never could have been withholden from them but

{continued on p. 2}
by the hand of tyranny. The French have already discovered that the blackness of the skin is no reason why a human being should be abandoned without redress to the caprice of a tormentor. . . . A full-grown horse or dog is beyond comparison a more rational, as well as a more conversable animal, than an infant of a day, or a week, or even month, old. But suppose the case were otherwise, what would it avail? the question is not, Can they reason? Nor, Can they talk? But, Can they suffer?” [See Jeremy Bentham, The Principles of Morals and Legislation, chap. XVII, section IV [1781] (Amherst, NY: Prometheus Books, 1988), at 310-11.]

John Stuart Mill concurred, repeating the analogy to slavery. [ See John Stuart Mill, Whewell on Moral Philosophy, in John Stuart Mill & Jeremy Bentham, Utilitarianism and Other Essays 228, 252 (Alan Ryan ed., 1987). ]

…in the last ten years, the animal rights question has move from the periphery and toward the center of political and legal debate.

The debate is international. In 2002, Germany became the first European nation to vote to guarantee animal rights in its constitution, adding the words "and animals" to a clause that obliges the state to respect and protect the dignity of human beings. [ John Hooper, German parliament votes to give animals constitutional rights, The Guardian (London) May 18, 2002, the Guardian Home Pages, Pg. 2] The European Union has done a great deal to reduce animal suffering.

… my position has radical implications of its own. It strongly suggests, for example, that there should be extensive regulation of the use of animals in entertainment, scientific experiments, and agriculture.
It also suggests that there is a strong argument, in principle, for bans on many current

{cont’d on p. 3}
uses of animals. In my view, those uses might well be seen, one hundred years hence, to be a form of unconscionable barbarity. In this respect, I suggest that Bentham and Mill were not wrong to offer an analogy between current uses of animals and human slavery.

…If we understand “rights” to be legal protection against harm, then many animals already do have rights, and the idea of animal rights is not at all controversial. …We can build on existing law to define a simple, minimal position in favor of animal rights: The law should prevent acts of cruelty to animals.

(on p. 4}
First, enforcement can occur only through public prosecution. If horses and cows are being beaten at a local farm, or if greyhounds are forced to live in small cages, protection will come only if the prosecutor decides to provide it. Of course prosecutors have limited budgets, and animal protection is rarely a high-priority item.

Second, the anticruelty provisions of state law contain extraordinarily large exceptions. They do not ban hunting, and generally they do not regulate hunting in a way that is designed to protect animals against suffering. They do not apply to the use of animals for medical or scientific purposes. To a large degree, they do not apply to the production and use of animals as food. [ I am putting some complex interpretive questions to one side. The majority of state statutes do not apply to farming, but some of them could, on their face, be so applied.]

On this view, representatives of animals should be able to bring private suits to ensure that anticruelty and related laws are actually enforced. “

That is Sunstein’s view. That from horse to chickens, from pets to slaughter-house cows and pigs, “private suits” on the behalf of animals should be brought forth. Slaughter for food and survival could one day theoretically in 100 years equal manslaughter, or an act of cannibalism. In the short term, now that the US Senate days ago confirmed Cass Sunstein 57 to 45, as a Regulatory Czar, he has been authorized, in effect, to exercise his agenda, even though most of the Senate refused to pre-screen his academic work. If the Senators refuse to read the bills they sign into law others write for them, why would they bother to do their elected job and read the works of some academic being appointed to create regulations (in effect, laws) on the American private and public sectors? It is clear that we can expect Sunstein, in his own idiom, to “nudge” America to a vegetarian diet by firstly creating a penalty for not pampering animals with human comfort conditions, and for slaughtering animals.

Let’s look at the logical regression from a practical stand-point of “allowing” people to still eat meat. If the farmer is forced to pay for a specialized sanitary warehouse, using ultra-violet irradiated super-clean air-conditioning systems keeping air temperatures a constant 65 degrees Fahrenheit year-round, to provide a like-human "comfort", how much will that drive up the cost of chicken, pork, and beef? Now let's say that you redistribute wealth so that there are no rich or poor among us, as Cass Sunstein has also proposed to do. At best, a ration of one meal a month being an animal meat product per person in the United States becomes a real possibility in less than 10 years.

And lest we forget, the argument of the animal right activists now state that “fish are pets”, while the “animals are pet people”. If this is argument moves forward under Sunstein, we can expect a regulatory ban on eating fish, and a further intensified persecution of Christianity; because it is universally taught that even a resurrected Jesus Christ dared eat camp-fire broiled fish with His disciples in the Gospel of John 21:9 ff. And in Sunstein's insane view, that would be associated with manslaughter and cannibalism. Sunstein may be an intelligent academic, but many of his views more appropriately should be aired only in a mental ward; and given like uncredibility.

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