jts

taters - bad taste

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jts    0

Dr. John McDougall says potato is almost a complete food by itself. He cited a case where some people lived on nothing but potato and a little oil for 90 days with no deterioration of health. A guy claims to have gone a whole year on nothing but potato, but he cheated by adding ketchup. In Gerson therapy, potato is recognised as almost a super food.

But for me every kind of potato has a slightly bad taste that I dislike: red potato, yellow potato, white potato, brown potato, russett potato, every potato I tried. Being a perverse unscientific person, I trust my sense of taste. The fact that something tastes bad is enough to convince me that it is bad, no matter what government says or what scientists say or what health gurus say. Therefore I decided I should not eat potato. Yams taste much better.

To put this in context, over the years I have acquired a sensitiveness, perhaps as a result of multiple fasts and clean diet. I don't necessarily react to things the way most people do.

The fact that potato has a bad taste tells me it has poison in it. Not enough to kill me but enough that I dislike it and even to make me slightly and briefly sick. What the hell might that poison be? What does wiki say?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Potato#Toxicity

Quote

 

Potatoes contain toxic compounds known as glycoalkaloids, of which the most prevalent are solanine and chaconine. Solanine is also found in other plants in the family Solanaceae, which includes such plants as the deadly nightshade (Atropa belladonna), henbane (Hyoscyamus niger) and tobacco (Nicotiana), as well as eggplant and tomato.

But tomato is okay.

 

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jts    0
7 hours ago, Brant Gaede said:

So is whale meat if you eat it raw.

--Brant

I don't know what whale meat has to do with taters. Maybe you think I ate taters raw. No, I steamed them.

 

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11 hours ago, jts said:

Dr. John McDougall says potato is almost a complete food by itself.

Potatoes Are Pillars of Worldwide Nutrition
April 2002    Vol. 1   No. 4

Quote

Complete Nutrition and Protein from Potatoes

Potatoes can provide complete nutrition for children and adults.  Many populations, for example people in rural populations of Poland and Russia at the turn of the 19th century, have lived in very good health doing extremely hard work with the white potato serving as their primary source of nutrition.

One landmark experiment carried out in 1925 on two healthy adults, a man 25 years old and a woman 28 years old, had them live on a diet primarily of white potatoes for 6 months (A few additional items of little nutritional value except for empty calories -- pure fats, a few fruits, coffee, and tea -- were supplemented in their diet).7  The report stated, “They did not tire of the uniform potato diet and there was no craving for change.”  Even though they were both physically active (especially the man) they were described as, “…in good health on a diet in which the nitrogen (protein) was practically solely derived from the potato.” [...]

 7.  Kon S.  XXXV.  The value of whole potato in human nutrition.  Biochemical J 22:258-260, 1928. 

 

 

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Peter    0

Fry some onions with those taters. Now if you want the world's best mashed potatoes go get some Bob Evan's Mashed Potatoes in the grocery store.

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jts    0
37 minutes ago, Peter said:

Fry some onions with those taters. Now if you want the world's best mashed potatoes go get some Bob Evan's Mashed Potatoes in the grocery store.

To me, taste is more than just taste, as I explained enough times.

About Bob Evan's Mashed Potatoes. For reasons that I explained multiple times I avoid that stuff.

 

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BaalChatzaf    0

Irish farmers, prior  to the Famine  subsisted on potatoes.  They ate the entire potate getting sufficient protein for the skins.  The famine reduced the potatoes to inedible squash rot  so many Irish farmers and their families died of malnutrition.  The English farm owners  did not permit the share croppers and independent farmers an access to grains  which were exported as cash crops.  As a result over a million Irish farmers and their families starved to death.  Many Irish left Ireland because there was not enough food or work available to produce wages which could have bought enough food.  So the potato famine in 1849 sent many Irish to other parts of the world including America.  

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Peter    0

jts wrote: About Bob Evan's Mashed Potatoes. For reasons that I explained multiple times I avoid that stuff. end quote

Lucky for you, there are potato aficionados on this thread eager to discuss their experiences and recipes. We want to extend this thread’s life. For instance, Bob Evan’s puts butter and cream in their potatoes! After peanut butter, Bob Evan’s mashed potatoes, plain or with cheese or garlic, would make the most wonderful survival food, when you need all the calories you can get.

When I was a kid we sliced old, raw potatoes into fourths and each portion needed to have an eye. Then you filled a small glass or even a larger mason jar with water. Stick three or four toothpicks into the potato to keep the potato in water but not submerged. And in a few days  . . . it will bloom into a wondrous plant and was obviously the germ of an idea for the carnivorous plant in “Little Shop of Horrors.”

Red skin potato salad is a milestone in anti fickleness when a kid first tries it. If you can eat those potato skins you are then ready to eat the skins of baked potatoes with sour cream.  Ummm good! And soon with russet potatoes you begin to appreciate their earthy taste. You gain nutrients and minerals from eating that dirt. And by eating dirt you acquire immunity to soil born illnesses. What a great way to inoculate yourself. Plant a fourth of a potato an inch deep in a small mound, water it, and then you have grown your own potatoe.

Potato Chips . . . need I say more? They are America’s favorite munch out food.  

Don’t forget the rhyming plant tomatoes. The red part is good. But the green stalk will make you ill. To avoid the bad taste and minor “poisonous” attribute of potatoes you just have to cook them! So bon appetite! As an aside? If food tastes bad or odd you may be poisoning yourself with supplements, or there may be a small dose of arsenic in our diet. Beware! Play safe!     

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jts    0
36 minutes ago, Peter said:

jts wrote: About Bob Evan's Mashed Potatoes. For reasons that I explained multiple times I avoid that stuff. end quote

Lucky for you, there are potato aficionados on this thread eager to discuss their experiences and recipes. We want to extend this thread’s life.

You may extend this thread but it has taken a turn that does not interest me. I have no interest in recipes.

The bad taste of potatoes is not eliminated by cooking.

It is possible to make something taste better by mixing it with something else. But that is missing the whole point. The sense of taste, like all senses, is a means of perception.

I have no problem with potatoes. I eat other things.

 

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BaalChatzaf    0
5 hours ago, jts said:

You may extend this thread but it has taken a turn that does not interest me. I have no interest in recipes.

The bad taste of potatoes is not eliminated by cooking.

It is possible to make something taste better by mixing it with something else. But that is missing the whole point. The sense of taste, like all senses, is a means of perception.

I have no problem with potatoes. I eat other things.

 

Enjoying unseasoned  baked potatoes is an acquired taste  which I have acquired.   I also like coffee (black and unsweetened) even though coffee tastes bad. Any normal infant would spit coffee out if you gave him/her a sip.  

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jts    0
6 hours ago, BaalChatzaf said:

Enjoying unseasoned  baked potatoes is an acquired taste  which I have acquired.

I have eaten enough baked potatoes over enough time that if the bad taste would go away with time, it would have. For most of my life I didn't notice the bad taste. It is only in the last few years that I noticed it.

I don't know what you mean by 'acquired'. So far as I know, the sense of taste can change in 2 directions. It can get corrupted (as in acquiring a taste for tobacco) or it can get uncorrupted (as in losing the taste for tobacco). Acquiring a taste for simple foods (as opposed to complex seasoned foods) is most likely a change in the direction of uncorrupted.

The following is a comical example of what Alan Goldhamer calls 'neuroadaptation, or change in the sense of taste by fasting.

We tried to feed him a very nice plant-based, SOS-free final meal before starting the fast, but he was clearly having difficulty eating the food. I thought he might have an esophageal stricture from the difficulty he was having swallowing. With each bite his face cringed as if he were swallowing the most bitter and disgusting fare you can imagine. I sat down next to him and said, “It looks like you’re having some trouble eating.” He said, “This stuff is AWFUL! If I have to eat tasteless swill like this in order to get healthy, I would rather DIE!” He suggested that rather than guiding him through a fast, he would prefer that I just go out to his truck, bring in his 12-gauge and SHOOT HIM IN THE HEAD!

After almost three weeks of fasting, the loss of almost 40 pounds and the elimination of all of his medications, the time came to begin refeeding. This time he was able to chew AND SWALLOW his health-promoting fare. When I commented on his improved ability to eat and enjoy whole, natural foods, he suggested that our chef was FINALLY getting the “hang of it.” I told him it was the same food he had tried before. He vehemently denied that and said that the food I had fed him three weeks ago was tasteless swill, but this stuff was “not bad.”

 

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BaalChatzaf    0
35 minutes ago, jts said:

I have eaten enough baked potatoes over enough time that if the bad taste would go away with time, it would have. For most of my life I didn't notice the bad taste. It is only in the last few years that I noticed it.

I don't know what you mean by 'acquired'. So far as I know, the sense of taste can change in 2 directions. It can get corrupted (as in acquiring a taste for tobacco) or it can get uncorrupted (as in losing the taste for tobacco). Acquiring a taste for simple foods (as opposed to complex seasoned foods) is most likely a change in the direction of uncorrupted.

The following is a comical example of what Alan Goldhamer calls 'neuroadaptation, or change in the sense of taste by fasting.

We tried to feed him a very nice plant-based, SOS-free final meal before starting the fast, but he was clearly having difficulty eating the food. I thought he might have an esophageal stricture from the difficulty he was having swallowing. With each bite his face cringed as if he were swallowing the most bitter and disgusting fare you can imagine. I sat down next to him and said, “It looks like you’re having some trouble eating.” He said, “This stuff is AWFUL! If I have to eat tasteless swill like this in order to get healthy, I would rather DIE!” He suggested that rather than guiding him through a fast, he would prefer that I just go out to his truck, bring in his 12-gauge and SHOOT HIM IN THE HEAD!

After almost three weeks of fasting, the loss of almost 40 pounds and the elimination of all of his medications, the time came to begin refeeding. This time he was able to chew AND SWALLOW his health-promoting fare. When I commented on his improved ability to eat and enjoy whole, natural foods, he suggested that our chef was FINALLY getting the “hang of it.” I told him it was the same food he had tried before. He vehemently denied that and said that the food I had fed him three weeks ago was tasteless swill, but this stuff was “not bad.”

 

Acquire taste.  A taste that one -learns- to like as opposed as a taste one instinctively likes.  Newborn infants instinctively like the taste of mother's milk (slightly sweet).   They do not have to work at liking it or becoming accustomed to it.  Give a newborn a sip of black coffee and he/she will spit it out.

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jts    0
2 minutes ago, BaalChatzaf said:

Acquire taste.  A taste that one -learns- to like as opposed as a taste one instinctively likes.  Newborn infants instinctively like the taste of mother's milk (slightly sweet).   They do not have to work at liking it or becoming accustomed to it.  Give a newborn a sip of black coffee and he/she will spit it out.

Do you mean an acquired taste is a corrupted taste? If it is not instinctive, what could that mean if not corrupted?

 

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BaalChatzaf    0
6 minutes ago, jts said:

Do you mean an acquired taste is a corrupted taste? If it is not instinctive, what could that mean if not corrupted?

 

No. An acquired taste is a learned taste.  How did you ever see any notion of corruption in what I wrote? 

Lordy!  You Normal people have a definite urge to jump to conclusions...   Now you know why I stick to literal meanings...

I do not read meanings  -into- things  and I don't extract unexpressed thoughts out of things unless they follow logically in the strict logical sense.   I think one of my blood ancestors was a Vulcan (quip!)

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jts    0
1 hour ago, BaalChatzaf said:

No. An acquired taste is a learned taste. 

I don't know what a learned taste is. I can only guess that a learned taste means initially (instinctively) a food tastes bad and later (non-instinctively) tastes good. To me that suggests corruption.

 

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BaalChatzaf    0
1 minute ago, jts said:

I don't know what a learned taste is. I can only guess that a learned taste means initially (instinctively) a food tastes bad and later (non-instinctively) tastes good. To me that suggests corruption.

 

You force yourself  to consume this item whose taste is not pleasing to you, until it becomes not only acceptable to you, but pleasant and desirable.  Think of it as nutritional masochism.  That is how I came to like coffee.  When I first began to drink coffee (around age 5) my parents diluted it with milk or cream and added sugar.  Eventually I learned to take it black but with with sweetening,  then I cut back on the sweetening until I drink it just like it comes from the pot.

I did a similar exercise with various kinds of cheese.  Now I just love cheese to pieces.  Smelly cheese,  nutty cheese,  sweet cheese.  More cheese, pleese. 

And I even learned to love spinach, kale and green beans. There is very little that I won't eat.  Obviously I like some things more than others,  but there is very little in the way of food and drink that I hate.

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jts    0
57 minutes ago, BaalChatzaf said:

You force yourself  to consume this item whose taste is not pleasing to you, until it becomes not only acceptable to you, but pleasant and desirable.  Think of it as nutritional masochism.  That is how I came to like coffee.  When I first began to drink coffee (around age 5) my parents diluted it with milk or cream and added sugar.  Eventually I learned to take it black but with with sweetening,  then I cut back on the sweetening until I drink it just like it comes from the pot.

I did a similar exercise with various kinds of cheese.  Now I just love cheese to pieces.  Smelly cheese,  nutty cheese,  sweet cheese.  More cheese, pleese. 

And I even learned to love spinach, kale and green beans. There is very little that I won't eat.  Obviously I like some things more than others,  but there is very little in the way of food and drink that I hate.

Corruption, as I suspected.

I want to lose all my acquired tastes.

 

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Peter    0

Taters and maters are fine but let us broaden the food discussion. See the lady’s user id? Pretty cool. She calls herself objectivixen. If you gotten a food problem, who ya gunna call? That nice Jewish lady.

Peter

 

From: Olivia <objectivixen CC: objectivism Subject: Re: OWL: Is vegetarianism kosher?

Date: Sun, 07 Dec 2003 18:52:32 -0600

 

Michelle F. Cohen [12/7] cited 'evidence' that vegetarianism is not in line with Judaism and its tenets, offering the word of God and 'proof' from the Torah. Am I the only one who finds it bizarre that an *atheist* is offering up God and the Torah as a reason we should abuse & kill animals? I find it disturbing that Michelle often spouts information, then never replies to obvious counterarguments, but nonetheless remain hopeful that maybe she will respond to what I've included below. But, hey, if she wants to bring God and the Torah into the mix, read what I found online below. Michelle, I look forward to your response on this one.

Olivia

----------

Judaism, Animals, and Vegetarianism. Judaism requires humane treatment of animals.

 

The Jewish concept of tsa'ar ba'alei chaim, the obligation not to cause pain to animals, is one of the most beautiful elements of Jewish thought. Jewish tradition is filled with compassion for animals, and strongly opposes the infliction of suffering on another living creature. Let's take a look at what Judaism says about our proper treatment of animals.

 

Many stories from Jewish tradition reflect our concern for animals. In one beautiful story from Midrash:

 

    While our teacher Moses was tending the sheep of Jethro in the

    wilderness a lamb ran away from him. He ran after her until she

    reached Hasuah. Upon reaching Hasuah she came upon a pool of water

    [whereupon] the lamb stopped to drink. When Moses reached her he

    said, "I did not know that you were running because [you were]

    thirsty. You must be tired." He placed her on his shoulder and began

    to walk. The Holy One, blessed be He, said, "You are compassionate

    in leading flocks belonging to mortals; I swear you will similarly

    shepherd my flock, Israel." (Exodus Rabbah 2:2)

 

Judaism is clear in mandating concern for animals. The Bible tells us explicitly, "The righteous man regardeth the life of his animal."(1) In Exodus, G-d insists that "If thou see the ass of him that hateth thee laying under its burden, thou shalt surely not pass by him; thou shalt surely unload it with him."(2) The Code of Jewish Law states, "It is forbidden, according to the law of the Torah, to inflict pain upon any living creature. On the contrary, it is our duty to relieve pain of any creature, even if it is ownerless of belongs to a non-Jew."(3) The Talmud explains that the obligation to relieve an animal from pain or danger supercedes rabbinic ordinances related to the Sabbath.

 

Indeed, the welfare of animals is so important that the fifth commandment mentions them specifically, and they too must be allowed to rest on the Sabbath.(4) The great Torah commentator Rashi explained that this means animals must be free to roam on the Sabbath day, and graze, and enjoy the beauties of nature.

 

The Talmud futher insists that "A person should not eat or drink before first providing for his animals."(5) Indeed, the Shulchan Aruch tells us it is so important that our animals not go hungry while we eat, that a person is legally authorized to interrupt the performance of a rabbinic commandment in order to interrupt the performance of a rabbinic commandment in order to make sure this has been done.

 

In Deuteronomy, the Torah instructs us not to take the mother bird and its young together.(6) Maimonides explains this injunction is meant to prevent causing the mother pain at seeing its young taken away. The Torah further commands us, "ye shall not kill [an animal] and its young both in one day," of which Maimonides says is "in order that people should be restrained and prevented from killing the two together in such a manner that the young is slain in the sight of its mother, for the pain of animals under such circumstances is very great. There is no difference in this case between the pain of people and the pain of other living beings, since the love and the tenderness of the mother for her young ones is not produced by reasoning but by feeling, and this faculty exists not only in people but in most living things."(7)

 

The rabbis further demonstrated their concern for animals by so strongly disapproving of sport hunting, that the Talmud prohibits even association with hunters.(8)

 

The laws of kosher slaughter also reflect a deep reverence for the welfare of animals. According to Jewish law, the shochet (slaughterer) must be a pious and learned man, the animal must be perfectly healthy, the knife must be perfectly smooth with no imperfections that may cause momentary pain at the point of death, and the animal must be killed with one quick cut severing the major arteries to the brain. Thus, Judaism requires that if an animal is to be killed, even its moment of death must be as quick and painless as possible.

 

Indeed, there are so many commandments mandating humane treatment for animals that the rabbis explicitly declared consideration for animals a biblical law. As the Talmud states, "Great importance is attached to the humane treatment of animals, so much so that it is declared to be as fundamental as human righteousness."(9) As Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch wrote, "Here you are faced with G-d's teaching, which obliges you not only to refrain from inflicting unnecessary pain on any animal, but to help and, when you can, to lessen the pain whenever you see an animal suffering, even though no fault of yours."(10) Tsa'ar ba'alei chaim is such an important idea in Judaism, that chief rabbi of England J.H Hertz said, "It is one of the glories of Judaism that, thousands of years before anyone else, it so fully recognized our duties to (animals)." It is absolutely clear that concern for the welfare of animals is an obligation for Jews.

 

For more on this subject, read Judaism and Animal Rights by Richard Schwartz

 

The way animals are treated on farms today violates Jewish teachings.

 

Judaism is unequivocal in requiring us to treat animals humanely. How do these important Jewish teachings on compassion for animals apply to what we eat?

 

If you're like most people, you imagine a farm the way storybooks portray them, with chickens scratching around in the dirt, pigs rolling together in the mud, and cows peacefully grazing out at pasture, the animals living a happy, idyllic life until coming to a quick and painless death at the hands of the slaughterer. This picture is far from reality. These kinds of farms, the norm back in Biblical and Talmudic times, have virtually disappeared in modern America. The mass production techniques which drove our industrial revolution now dominate our farms as well, and today large agribusiness conglomerates have nearly obliterated the traditional family farms that once dotted our landscape. Over 90% of animals on U.S. farms today are raised using intensive rearing methods, on modern "factory farms." Listen to what happens on these factory farms, and consider how the way animals are raised for food today fits in with our Jewish tradition of compassion for animals.

 

Chickens, for instance, are raised in absolutely atrocious conditions. Those raised for meat live their short lives entirely indoors, never seeing grass or sun or sky, crowded so tightly that each chicken, with a wingspan of 2½ feet, has on average a mere 6/10 of a square foot in which to live its life. Their droppings are not cleaned, so they spend their entire lives in their own filth. As a result of the ammonia, dust, and disease in the air, farmers complain of sore eyes, coughing, and even chronic bronchitis, and have been warned to avoid entering these areas. If that's true for the farmers, what must it be like for the chickens, who must live their entire lives breathing this air? They all develop respiratory problems as a result, and the ammonia burning their eyes sometimes leads to blindness. Farmers use hormonal and genetic manipulation to make the chickens grow seven times faster than normal, which puts such stress on their bodies that 90% of the chickens suffer leg deformaties, and some just flip over in convulsions and die. Though their normal lifespan is 15-20 years, they are slaughtered at just 7 weeks of age, because if allowed to grow longer, mortality rates surge due to heart attacks, infections, and other diseases. Under these conditions of extreme stress and frustration, the chickens will actually peck each other to death, a behavior virtually unheard of under normal conditions where chickens can establish a natural "pecking order." Farmers deal with this loss to profitability not by alleviating the conditions which lead to such behavior, but by cutting their beaks with a hot knife. This is not a painless procedure like trimming nails, since the birds have sensitive nerves in their beaks, and indeed for some chickens this creates so much pain that they cannot eat and starve to death.

 

Chickens raised for their eggs have it even worse. After hatching, since male chicks are useless to the egg industry, they are simply thrown into plastic bags where they suffocate under one another, or are thrown alive into grinders to be fed to their sisters. The females are raised in wire cages stacked one on top of the other, so excrement drops from one cage onto the birds below. The birds are generally packed 4-7 birds to a cage the size of a folded newspaper. They cannot stand or perch comfortably on the unnatural slanted wire floor. The result is severe discomfort and serious leg deformities, and their nails can get caught in the wiring leaving them completely immobile. It is typical for one hen to be consistently trampled underfoot by the others. Hens also have a strong need to lay their eggs in privacy, an urge shown in studies to be as strong as the urge to eat after being starved for a day. Of course, privacy is completely impossible under these conditions. Other urges, like dust bathing and nesting, are also completely frustrated. In time, the rubbing of their bodies against the wires causes their feather to fall out and their skin to be rubbed bright red and raw. Indeed, it appears that the birds are driven literally insane by their treatment, as indicated by their hysterical noisiness among naturally rather quiet animals. Conditions are so bad for these layers, 20-25% of them die before slaughter at less than 2 years of age. By the time they're killed, due to confinement and transport, 88% of then hens have broken bones. What's more, when the layers end their egg cycle, they are often "force-molted." This involves leaving them without food in complete darkness for sometimes up to 18 days, in order to shock their bodies into starting another cycle. The birds can lose more than 25% of their body weight in this process, and it is common for 5-10% to die. And egg-laying chickens, like the rest, end up in slaughter.

 

The cows we eat are routinely branded, receiving third-degree burns; their horns are either torn out or gouged out; and they are castrated. All without anesthetic, of course. Most dairy cows are tied in place for their entire lives, unable even to walk around. To keep their milk flowing, they are impregnated every year, and their calves are taken away immediately so as not to waste any of the milk. This is causes great suffering to both mother and child, and a cow will often bellow for days after its baby. Except for the few added to the dairy line, these babies all become veal, to be raised in darkness and isolation in stalls too small to lie down in, fed iron-free diets to keep them anemic, and slaughtered at just six weeks of age. The dairy industry and the veal industry are the same industry. Giving birth constantly wears the cows' bodies down, so that these animals who normally live to 25 years are spent by the time they're six, and sent to slaughter like the rest.

 

All these animals endure transport to slaughter for up to days without any food or water, sweltering under the summer heat or freezing to death in the harsh winter. At the slaughterhouse, they are beaten with electric prods, including in their eyes and anuses, to get them to go up the chute as they smell the blood and hear the screams of the animals before them. They are hung in the air by their back legs, which bruises or breaks them. For non-kosher meat they are supposed to be stunned, but with a documented 25% failure to stun rate, they routinely have their limbs chopped off, their skin peeled off, and they are dropped into tanks of scalding water, all while fully alive and conscious. This is the horrific, bloody end to their life of misery. And all just because we like the taste of meat.

 

How does this fit in with the Jewish mandate not to cause pain to any animal? How does their lifelong confinement compare with Rashi's statement that they must be free to roam and enjoy the beauties of nature on the Sabbath day? How is their starvation through weather extremes during transport to slaughter consistent with the mandate that we must not ourselves eat before making sure our animals are provided for, even if this interrupts a rabbinic commandment? How does the dairy industry's practice of removing the calf from its mother just after birth, compare to Maimonides' words that "there is no difference in this case between the pain of people and the pain of other living beings"? How can we as Jews, who are not permitted even a small notch in the knife used for killing an animal lest it cause momentary pain, who are not permitted to take the young away in the mother bird's presence lest it cause her grief, who are not even allowed to associate with hunters, how can we inflict all this suffering on so many of G-d's creatures, about whom the Torah tells us "the L-rd is good to all, and his tender mercy is over all his creatures"? Where is the mercy here for these pitiful animals?

 

It is clear that the Torah envisages a peaceful, happy life for animals, and that if they are to be killed for food, they should end their happy lives quickly and painlessly. Today in America, however, we cannot eat animal products without directly participating in cruelty of unfathomable proportions. Each year, in the US alone, 9 billion warm blooded animals are slaughtered for food. Compare that to the human population of the entire earth of 6 billion, and there is no comprehending the amount of suffering involved. We cannot be compassionate, we cannot abhor cruelty, we cannot be true to the beautiful decency and caring for animals written into the Torah which G-d gave us, indeed, we cannot be good Jews, as long as we continue to pay for the torment of these abused souls.

 

Jews have known too well the bitter taste of cruelty and oppression, and Jews have remembered our tragic history when we have seen others suffering under the cold hand of persecution. Jews have taken leadership roles in the battles for worker’s rights, for civil rights, and even today Jews have worked to help the plight of the Kosovo refugees. Let us not forget the suffering we have experienced as a people when it comes our turn to choose whether others will be brutalized at our hands, every time we sit down to dinner. As Nobel prize winning Jewish author Isaac Bashevis Singer wrote, "...as long as human beings will go on shedding the blood of animals, there will never be any peace... There will be no justice as long as man will stand with a knife or with a gun and destroy those who are weaker than he is." Let us, as Jews, who have helped change the world for the better so many times before, continue to spread the concept of tikkun olam, of repairing the world, to the countless animals who live, and die, in abject misery.

 

Millions of people are going vegetarian every year. Please consider becoming a vegetarian yourself, so that we as Jews can help create a more compassionate world.

 

NOTES

(1) Proverbs 12:10

(2) Exodus 23:5

(4) Exodus 20:8-10, Deuteronomy 5:12-14

(5) from Deuteronomy 11:15

(6) Deuteronomy 22:6-7

(7) Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed, 3:48

(8) Avodah Zorah 18b

(10) Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch, Horeb, Chapter 60, Section 416

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BaalChatzaf    0
11 hours ago, Peter said:

Taters and maters are fine but let us broaden the food discussion. See the lady’s user id? Pretty cool. She calls herself objectivixen. If you gotten a food problem, who ya gunna call? That nice Jewish lady.

Peter

 

From: Olivia <objectivixen CC: objectivism Subject: Re: OWL: Is vegetarianism kosher?

Date: Sun, 07 Dec 2003 18:52:32 -0600

 

Michelle F. Cohen [12/7] cited 'evidence' that vegetarianism is not in line with Judaism and its tenets, offering the word of God and 'proof' from the Torah. Am I the only one who finds it bizarre that an *atheist* is offering up God and the Torah as a reason we should abuse & kill animals? I find it disturbing that Michelle often spouts information, then never replies to obvious counterarguments, but nonetheless remain hopeful that maybe she will respond to what I've included below. But, hey, if she wants to bring God and the Torah into the mix, read what I found online below. Michelle, I look forward to your response on this one.

Olivia

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Judaism, Animals, and Vegetarianism. Judaism requires humane treatment of animals.

 

The Jewish concept of tsa'ar ba'alei chaim, the obligation not to cause pain to animals, is one of the most beautiful elements of Jewish thought. Jewish tradition is filled with compassion for animals, and strongly opposes the infliction of suffering on another living creature. Let's take a look at what Judaism says about our proper treatment of animals.

 

Many stories from Jewish tradition reflect our concern for animals. In one beautiful story from Midrash:

 

    While our teacher Moses was tending the sheep of Jethro in the

    wilderness a lamb ran away from him. He ran after her until she

    reached Hasuah. Upon reaching Hasuah she came upon a pool of water

    [whereupon] the lamb stopped to drink. When Moses reached her he

    said, "I did not know that you were running because [you were]

    thirsty. You must be tired." He placed her on his shoulder and began

    to walk. The Holy One, blessed be He, said, "You are compassionate

    in leading flocks belonging to mortals; I swear you will similarly

    shepherd my flock, Israel." (Exodus Rabbah 2:2)

 

Judaism is clear in mandating concern for animals. The Bible tells us explicitly, "The righteous man regardeth the life of his animal."(1) In Exodus, G-d insists that "If thou see the ass of him that hateth thee laying under its burden, thou shalt surely not pass by him; thou shalt surely unload it with him."(2) The Code of Jewish Law states, "It is forbidden, according to the law of the Torah, to inflict pain upon any living creature. On the contrary, it is our duty to relieve pain of any creature, even if it is ownerless of belongs to a non-Jew."(3) The Talmud explains that the obligation to relieve an animal from pain or danger supercedes rabbinic ordinances related to the Sabbath.

 

Indeed, the welfare of animals is so important that the fifth commandment mentions them specifically, and they too must be allowed to rest on the Sabbath.(4) The great Torah commentator Rashi explained that this means animals must be free to roam on the Sabbath day, and graze, and enjoy the beauties of nature.

 

The Talmud futher insists that "A person should not eat or drink before first providing for his animals."(5) Indeed, the Shulchan Aruch tells us it is so important that our animals not go hungry while we eat, that a person is legally authorized to interrupt the performance of a rabbinic commandment in order to interrupt the performance of a rabbinic commandment in order to make sure this has been done.

 

In Deuteronomy, the Torah instructs us not to take the mother bird and its young together.(6) Maimonides explains this injunction is meant to prevent causing the mother pain at seeing its young taken away. The Torah further commands us, "ye shall not kill [an animal] and its young both in one day," of which Maimonides says is "in order that people should be restrained and prevented from killing the two together in such a manner that the young is slain in the sight of its mother, for the pain of animals under such circumstances is very great. There is no difference in this case between the pain of people and the pain of other living beings, since the love and the tenderness of the mother for her young ones is not produced by reasoning but by feeling, and this faculty exists not only in people but in most living things."(7)

 

The rabbis further demonstrated their concern for animals by so strongly disapproving of sport hunting, that the Talmud prohibits even association with hunters.(8)

 

The laws of kosher slaughter also reflect a deep reverence for the welfare of animals. According to Jewish law, the shochet (slaughterer) must be a pious and learned man, the animal must be perfectly healthy, the knife must be perfectly smooth with no imperfections that may cause momentary pain at the point of death, and the animal must be killed with one quick cut severing the major arteries to the brain. Thus, Judaism requires that if an animal is to be killed, even its moment of death must be as quick and painless as possible.

 

Indeed, there are so many commandments mandating humane treatment for animals that the rabbis explicitly declared consideration for animals a biblical law. As the Talmud states, "Great importance is attached to the humane treatment of animals, so much so that it is declared to be as fundamental as human righteousness."(9) As Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch wrote, "Here you are faced with G-d's teaching, which obliges you not only to refrain from inflicting unnecessary pain on any animal, but to help and, when you can, to lessen the pain whenever you see an animal suffering, even though no fault of yours."(10) Tsa'ar ba'alei chaim is such an important idea in Judaism, that chief rabbi of England J.H Hertz said, "It is one of the glories of Judaism that, thousands of years before anyone else, it so fully recognized our duties to (animals)." It is absolutely clear that concern for the welfare of animals is an obligation for Jews.

 

For more on this subject, read Judaism and Animal Rights by Richard Schwartz

 

The way animals are treated on farms today violates Jewish teachings.

 

Judaism is unequivocal in requiring us to treat animals humanely. How do these important Jewish teachings on compassion for animals apply to what we eat?

 

If you're like most people, you imagine a farm the way storybooks portray them, with chickens scratching around in the dirt, pigs rolling together in the mud, and cows peacefully grazing out at pasture, the animals living a happy, idyllic life until coming to a quick and painless death at the hands of the slaughterer. This picture is far from reality. These kinds of farms, the norm back in Biblical and Talmudic times, have virtually disappeared in modern America. The mass production techniques which drove our industrial revolution now dominate our farms as well, and today large agribusiness conglomerates have nearly obliterated the traditional family farms that once dotted our landscape. Over 90% of animals on U.S. farms today are raised using intensive rearing methods, on modern "factory farms." Listen to what happens on these factory farms, and consider how the way animals are raised for food today fits in with our Jewish tradition of compassion for animals.

 

Chickens, for instance, are raised in absolutely atrocious conditions. Those raised for meat live their short lives entirely indoors, never seeing grass or sun or sky, crowded so tightly that each chicken, with a wingspan of 2½ feet, has on average a mere 6/10 of a square foot in which to live its life. Their droppings are not cleaned, so they spend their entire lives in their own filth. As a result of the ammonia, dust, and disease in the air, farmers complain of sore eyes, coughing, and even chronic bronchitis, and have been warned to avoid entering these areas. If that's true for the farmers, what must it be like for the chickens, who must live their entire lives breathing this air? They all develop respiratory problems as a result, and the ammonia burning their eyes sometimes leads to blindness. Farmers use hormonal and genetic manipulation to make the chickens grow seven times faster than normal, which puts such stress on their bodies that 90% of the chickens suffer leg deformaties, and some just flip over in convulsions and die. Though their normal lifespan is 15-20 years, they are slaughtered at just 7 weeks of age, because if allowed to grow longer, mortality rates surge due to heart attacks, infections, and other diseases. Under these conditions of extreme stress and frustration, the chickens will actually peck each other to death, a behavior virtually unheard of under normal conditions where chickens can establish a natural "pecking order." Farmers deal with this loss to profitability not by alleviating the conditions which lead to such behavior, but by cutting their beaks with a hot knife. This is not a painless procedure like trimming nails, since the birds have sensitive nerves in their beaks, and indeed for some chickens this creates so much pain that they cannot eat and starve to death.

 

Chickens raised for their eggs have it even worse. After hatching, since male chicks are useless to the egg industry, they are simply thrown into plastic bags where they suffocate under one another, or are thrown alive into grinders to be fed to their sisters. The females are raised in wire cages stacked one on top of the other, so excrement drops from one cage onto the birds below. The birds are generally packed 4-7 birds to a cage the size of a folded newspaper. They cannot stand or perch comfortably on the unnatural slanted wire floor. The result is severe discomfort and serious leg deformities, and their nails can get caught in the wiring leaving them completely immobile. It is typical for one hen to be consistently trampled underfoot by the others. Hens also have a strong need to lay their eggs in privacy, an urge shown in studies to be as strong as the urge to eat after being starved for a day. Of course, privacy is completely impossible under these conditions. Other urges, like dust bathing and nesting, are also completely frustrated. In time, the rubbing of their bodies against the wires causes their feather to fall out and their skin to be rubbed bright red and raw. Indeed, it appears that the birds are driven literally insane by their treatment, as indicated by their hysterical noisiness among naturally rather quiet animals. Conditions are so bad for these layers, 20-25% of them die before slaughter at less than 2 years of age. By the time they're killed, due to confinement and transport, 88% of then hens have broken bones. What's more, when the layers end their egg cycle, they are often "force-molted." This involves leaving them without food in complete darkness for sometimes up to 18 days, in order to shock their bodies into starting another cycle. The birds can lose more than 25% of their body weight in this process, and it is common for 5-10% to die. And egg-laying chickens, like the rest, end up in slaughter.

 

The cows we eat are routinely branded, receiving third-degree burns; their horns are either torn out or gouged out; and they are castrated. All without anesthetic, of course. Most dairy cows are tied in place for their entire lives, unable even to walk around. To keep their milk flowing, they are impregnated every year, and their calves are taken away immediately so as not to waste any of the milk. This is causes great suffering to both mother and child, and a cow will often bellow for days after its baby. Except for the few added to the dairy line, these babies all become veal, to be raised in darkness and isolation in stalls too small to lie down in, fed iron-free diets to keep them anemic, and slaughtered at just six weeks of age. The dairy industry and the veal industry are the same industry. Giving birth constantly wears the cows' bodies down, so that these animals who normally live to 25 years are spent by the time they're six, and sent to slaughter like the rest.

 

All these animals endure transport to slaughter for up to days without any food or water, sweltering under the summer heat or freezing to death in the harsh winter. At the slaughterhouse, they are beaten with electric prods, including in their eyes and anuses, to get them to go up the chute as they smell the blood and hear the screams of the animals before them. They are hung in the air by their back legs, which bruises or breaks them. For non-kosher meat they are supposed to be stunned, but with a documented 25% failure to stun rate, they routinely have their limbs chopped off, their skin peeled off, and they are dropped into tanks of scalding water, all while fully alive and conscious. This is the horrific, bloody end to their life of misery. And all just because we like the taste of meat.

 

How does this fit in with the Jewish mandate not to cause pain to any animal? How does their lifelong confinement compare with Rashi's statement that they must be free to roam and enjoy the beauties of nature on the Sabbath day? How is their starvation through weather extremes during transport to slaughter consistent with the mandate that we must not ourselves eat before making sure our animals are provided for, even if this interrupts a rabbinic commandment? How does the dairy industry's practice of removing the calf from its mother just after birth, compare to Maimonides' words that "there is no difference in this case between the pain of people and the pain of other living beings"? How can we as Jews, who are not permitted even a small notch in the knife used for killing an animal lest it cause momentary pain, who are not permitted to take the young away in the mother bird's presence lest it cause her grief, who are not even allowed to associate with hunters, how can we inflict all this suffering on so many of G-d's creatures, about whom the Torah tells us "the L-rd is good to all, and his tender mercy is over all his creatures"? Where is the mercy here for these pitiful animals?

 

It is clear that the Torah envisages a peaceful, happy life for animals, and that if they are to be killed for food, they should end their happy lives quickly and painlessly. Today in America, however, we cannot eat animal products without directly participating in cruelty of unfathomable proportions. Each year, in the US alone, 9 billion warm blooded animals are slaughtered for food. Compare that to the human population of the entire earth of 6 billion, and there is no comprehending the amount of suffering involved. We cannot be compassionate, we cannot abhor cruelty, we cannot be true to the beautiful decency and caring for animals written into the Torah which G-d gave us, indeed, we cannot be good Jews, as long as we continue to pay for the torment of these abused souls.

 

Jews have known too well the bitter taste of cruelty and oppression, and Jews have remembered our tragic history when we have seen others suffering under the cold hand of persecution. Jews have taken leadership roles in the battles for worker’s rights, for civil rights, and even today Jews have worked to help the plight of the Kosovo refugees. Let us not forget the suffering we have experienced as a people when it comes our turn to choose whether others will be brutalized at our hands, every time we sit down to dinner. As Nobel prize winning Jewish author Isaac Bashevis Singer wrote, "...as long as human beings will go on shedding the blood of animals, there will never be any peace... There will be no justice as long as man will stand with a knife or with a gun and destroy those who are weaker than he is." Let us, as Jews, who have helped change the world for the better so many times before, continue to spread the concept of tikkun olam, of repairing the world, to the countless animals who live, and die, in abject misery.

 

Millions of people are going vegetarian every year. Please consider becoming a vegetarian yourself, so that we as Jews can help create a more compassionate world.

 

NOTES

(1) Proverbs 12:10

(2) Exodus 23:5

(4) Exodus 20:8-10, Deuteronomy 5:12-14

(5) from Deuteronomy 11:15

(6) Deuteronomy 22:6-7

(7) Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed, 3:48

(8) Avodah Zorah 18b

(10) Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch, Horeb, Chapter 60, Section 416

Being a veggie is not only kosher,  it is glott kosher.  There are no halachot (Jewish religious laws)  requiring one to eat animal flesh. The only caution in eating vegetables is that they be washed clean of little bugs.  Little bugs are not kosher. 

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Peter    0

The Big Guy in the Sky said, “I swear you will similarly shepherd my flock, Israel,” and just because Jews are nice guys. “Oh, beautiful for spacious skies, and amber waves of grain.” That is the Kosher / American anthem.

 

Little bugs are not kosher, and I know kosher laws were created to prevent illness, but do they stand up to scientific examination? I bet you would be surprised that bugs are found in most products. Frozen peas? Bugs in there, so many parts of grasshopper, aphid, and lady bug per hundred, that it would make you gag. Yet if you do not know what is in it, it tastes good.

For most of our human history, we knowingly ate bugs. Bugs are good for us. I saw an article about the stomach contents of a cave kid who died and he had spent his morning turning over vegetation and eating the yukky bugs he found. I forget how he died but it wasn’t from the nutritious grubs he ate.

Waiter, there’s a fly in my soup.

Not a problem. I won’t charge you for the extra meat.

There have been several attempts over the years to get people to eat bugs which can be grown in bulk, like crickets, but few people have indulged that fancy. Here is a dilemma for everyone. If you could eat soy or alga based “meat tasting products” would you stop eating meat? I am not a fan of slaughtering animals for food unless necessary, so I would have to say I would forgo the pleasure of a pork chop, hamburger, or leg of lamb, to stop the slaughter, if it tasted satisfyingly meaty. I suppose unfertilized hen’s eggs don’t count as slaughter. But "Little Snowflake" leftist / greenies say it is exploitation.

I have mentioned how my Dad’s first summer job as a 16 and then as a 17 year old at the H&H Poultry Company plant in Selbyville, Delaware cutting the throats of chickens hanging by their feet as they went by on an assembly line. After those summers he stopped eating chicken, except for chicken livers which made no sense to me. Here in the country we have “hog killing time,” which is accomplished with a 22 caliber bullet through the eye, into its brain. Yuk. That is considered humane. You give the hog a little food and sooth it and it never sees the bullet coming. Just don’t try to shoot a hog that just heard another hog get shot. I was at my Great Aunt's house when her handyman tried that. I still eat bacon and I had pork scrapple for breakfast today, which is a rarity for me. If you eat meat, my advice is don’t think about it.

Wow. Quarter pounders are on sale today, two for five bucks!

Peter 

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BaalChatzaf    0
7 hours ago, Peter said:

The Big Guy in the Sky said, “I swear you will similarly shepherd my flock, Israel,” and just because Jews are nice guys. “Oh, beautiful for spacious skies, and amber waves of grain.” That is the Kosher / American anthem.

 

Little bugs are not kosher, and I know kosher laws were created to prevent illness, but do they stand up to scientific examination? I bet you would be surprised that bugs are found in most products. Frozen peas? Bugs in there, so many parts of grasshopper, aphid, and lady bug per hundred, that it would make you gag. Yet if you do not know what is in it, it tastes good.

For most of our human history, we knowingly ate bugs. Bugs are good for us. I saw an article about the stomach contents of a cave kid who died and he had spent his morning turning over vegetation and eating the yukky bugs he found. I forget how he died but it wasn’t from the nutritious grubs he ate.

Waiter, there’s a fly in my soup.

Not a problem. I won’t charge you for the extra meat.

There have been several attempts over the years to get people to eat bugs which can be grown in bulk, like crickets, but few people have indulged that fancy. Here is a dilemma for everyone. If you could eat soy or alga based “meat tasting products” would you stop eating meat? I am not a fan of slaughtering animals for food unless necessary, so I would have to say I would forgo the pleasure of a pork chop, hamburger, or leg of lamb, to stop the slaughter, if it tasted satisfyingly meaty. I suppose unfertilized hen’s eggs don’t count as slaughter. But "Little Snowflake" leftist / greenies say it is exploitation.

I have mentioned how my Dad’s first summer job as a 16 and then as a 17 year old at the H&H Poultry Company plant in Selbyville, Delaware cutting the throats of chickens hanging by their feet as they went by on an assembly line. After those summers he stopped eating chicken, except for chicken livers which made no sense to me. Here in the country we have “hog killing time,” which is accomplished with a 22 caliber bullet through the eye, into its brain. Yuk. That is considered humane. You give the hog a little food and sooth it and it never sees the bullet coming. Just don’t try to shoot a hog that just heard another hog get shot. I was at my Great Aunt's house when her handyman tried that. I still eat bacon and I had pork scrapple for breakfast today, which is a rarity for me. If you eat meat, my advice is don’t think about it.

Wow. Quarter pounders are on sale today, two for five bucks!

Peter 

Crickets and Grasshoppers and similar species of bug were actually kosher.  Six legged things were not.  The bugs on vegetable that were to be avoid were visible bugs.  For the Children of Israel  microscopic bugs did not exist.  No one developed lenses to magnify objects greatly. 

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