Adventures in virtue signalling

We don’t always write about big stuff. It gets pretty tedious, even discouraging.

We spend too much money on eggs, not because it makes us feel good, but rather because we cannot stand the thought of animals being mistreated. Most people are like us, I know. The people who make the products we use don’t have a choice in the marketplace – they have to use the most efficient procedures to procure and produce our food. Animals suffer immensely in the process.

Advertising is manipulation, nothing more, and virtue signalling in advertising is so common as to be the norm. On Tuesday I was looking over the wide variety of eggs offered at our local King’s Sooper, and all of them in some form claimed to be kind to the hens that laid the eggs. I don’t need to go into great detail, as I’ve other things to do today, but it is enough to say that producers walk a fine line between lies and truth, often just enough truth to mislead us.

So we look for the label to the left. Here’s what is means, we are told: “If the carton says “certified humane” it means the birds were raised in a manner that meets certification requirements of Humane Farm Animal Care. Laying hens must be uncaged and have access to perches, nest boxes and dust-bathing areas.”

We can do no more. We cannot go to the farms in question or meet the hens. We have to trust at some point, and so have done so by only buying eggs that have that label on the box.

On Tuesday I paid $6 per dozen from Vital Farms, and yesterday noticed that inside the carton they offer to take us to the place where the hens live. I took them up on it. I clicked on VitalFarms.com/Farm,  I urge you to do the same. I urge you to do this several times, and I’ve no doubt that each time you do, you’ll be seeing the same footage. You see, the advertisers got there first. Vital farms is running a loop, that is, the same footage again and again.

The name of the farm on the side of the carton was  Featherland. When I got to the website, I was told hey, it takes a long time to get the cameras up and running. So please, instead of Featherland, take a look at our featured farm, Buckskin Acres. I did so, several times, and each time saw the same footage. I followed one hen in particular, seen to the right, always in the same place, always moving in the same direction.

OK, so this is planet earth, and people lie all the time, especially people in marketing. Why should I be upset? I’m not. I only do not like being treated as a fool with no brain or the ability to use it.

While we’re at it, let’s take a look at the farmers who own Buckskin Acres, to the left. They are obviously Midwest, and obviously not some impersonal corporation.

OK, enough. I’ve work to do today. Lies and lying liars all about, including the ad agency that was hired by Vital Farms to market its product. We can only hope that Humane Farm Animal Care is real. That part I want to believe, and if so, then Vital Farms, while not the wonderful folks running around picking up their hens and hugging them and making sure they are healthy, are at least somewhat forthright in their marketing.

26 thoughts on “Adventures in virtue signalling

  1. People don’t keep chickens where you live? No farmers markets or CSAs? I think with a small bit of research you can find local egg producers to do business with.

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    1. We have a great local egg producer in our area. They are the only eggs we eat. You get green, brown, light brown, white eggs depending on the type of chicken. I asked why are the yolks a nice dark yellow. The farmer (Hallie) says, they eat bugs!

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      1. Yes, chickens eat bugs. They also eat weeds. The yolks are likely colored yellow from the carotenoids in the weeds. Some commercial producers feed their layers things like marigold petals to enhance the color of their yolks.
        The first time you see the almost orange yolks in truly free range eggs it is astonishing.

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  2. I eat eggs and I don’t have kids, so I don’t mean to come off as righteous here, but we are talking about ripping mothers’ unhatched babies out from under them so we can eat them. The hens may or may not have an emotional attachment to their eggs (I’ve read differing opinions), but if nothing else, we are seriously fucking with their deepest instincts. Then again, maybe most hens are desensitized to it, much like most humans are desensitized to the ways we’re separated from OUR natural instincts.

    God, this is such a hypocritical comment, since I’m far from being a vegan. I’ll post it anyway. I’ve been thinking lately about how I’ve unconsciously internalized certain attitudes and behaviors that I so detest in our psychopathic overlords. So I post this to call myself out, as an unrepentant egg-eater.

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    1. Maybe if you’re capable of laying an egg every day their isn’t much emotional damage. If eating eggs is hypocrisy, how will you describe it when you start eating chicken breasts?

      Billy Boy would pounce on the idea of eating eggs as cruelty, I’m sure, but it looks like he’s more interested in pushing the dangers of bird flu.

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      1. All points taken and agreed upon, OM.

        If I hunted and/or gathered my own food–or a had a personal connection with local farmers who did it for me–Billy Boy’s stance on the matter would be irrelevant. If I raised chickens or spent time on a farm where their eggs were harvested, I’d get my own sense of what’s going on. Instead, I let soulless corporations take care of it.

        I don’t feel emotionally damaged by being separated from my hunting and gathering instinct, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t damaging.

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  3. I grew up in Leave It To Beaver suburbia, but we had just enough backyard to house two ducks and two chickens and had fresh eggs right out the chute on a regular basis. These birds shit more than the space could hold, but they were otherwise low maintenance. I have the space now, even in Frisco, but the night is ruled by stray cats and raccoons so it would be inhumane even keeping fowl caged. Imagine the color of terror stricken yolks.

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  4. I had an uncle who had a chicken farm in Florida in the 70s, and it broke my heart to see those poor birds. I try to get free range eggs and do get cage free if free range eggs aren’t available because I saw the horris those birds endured with my own eyes. I once bought supposedly free range eggs at a farmer’s market and was very angry to see yolks that were pale yellow. I’m guessing many people do not realize that true free range eggs are a deep yellow in color. I’m guessing the “farmer” bought 79 cent eggs and sold them for $5.

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  5. Well the good news is that the domesticated chickens are not chickens, sort of the way most.people are no longer people. From experience I can assure you that domesticated chickens do not give a flying fuck about their eggs; and if you leave them in the cage they will discover within a week that eggs are…well, very tasty.Nor have I ever seen a domesticated chicken sit and warm it’s egg…even when I let them live 100 percent free…not free range but free period. So rest easy, they are no longer chickens…

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    1. Our relationship to the domesticated chicken is similar to our relationship with our own masters, except of course in this latter bond, we are the chickens.
      There are always a rebellious rooster or two in the mix…they will kick up a stink, prance about and act like they know what is going on, but they never leave the barnyard because there is too much good Pussy and free food about….again like us with our own masters.
      In any case if you want to know how to domesticate any living thing to the point of no return, it is easy to understand the one basic principal: take away their ability to obtain their own food. Nothing breaks a living thing faster than boredom.

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      1. Oh I guess you got it: rooster equals truther and pussy and free food equals our electronic toys plus other benefits to the cage.

        Have you heard about the bear in the zoo? He was always complaining and analyzing his zookeepers actions and whining to be free, but the gates to the zoo was open; when he was reminded of this though, he just scoffed and said, “ but the whole damn world is a zoo.”
        Oh we are a sad bunch…..no escape but inward….

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      2. I like the framework of civilization as a farming operation, but where do you see the farmers? Are the highest levels, whoever/wherever they are, still “wild”, non-domesticated? Or maybe at least trying to keep their genes “pure” and unmixed with the domesticated herd?

        Certainly that’s not the case with many of their front men… Who seem to be among the MOST domesticated of humans. I mean, Bill Gates is no magnificent wild beast… Definitely more Rick Moranis than Mel Gibson (and even a healthy masculine type like a Gibson must be “domesticated” to busy himself with movie-making, I guess…)

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        1. the programmers are programmed to program; if they were not programmed they would not desire to program others;

          farmers are domesticated and so have no qualms about domesticating;
          the moment i realized that to take away an animals ability to obtain its own food renders it a non animal, i got rid of my chickens and goats and alpacas…just recently in fact.

          i grew quickly to hate their aggressive and frantic dependency. the more freedom i gave them the more aggressive and frantic they became. If they are not afraid of humans, then they look to humans to take care of them. they know we are their superiors. They know we have food and food is the only thing they care about.

          so where do i see the farmers? farmers are basically the breeders; yes they want to keep their genes separate from the domesticated herd because they see the herd as filthy, as not domesticated enough. I do not think that the breeders even have a concept of domestication per se because they have only a barnyard view of reality. what is not under their control is filthy and wild
          .
          they own the barnyard, and want to keep it clean and profitable. but of course the psychology of the whole thing can be probed down to a much deeper level and it is not so clear cut…but there is the gist of it perhaps…

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          1. Interesting, not the answer I expected exactly, so very interesting. Not sure if you’re being literal when you say the programmers are programmed – then the obvious question would be “who programs the programmers?” I would assume, from how you describe it, that you would see them as being domesticated/ programmed in an organic process – one who farms, ends up farming themselves, perhaps. The process builds on itself, so that later generations are more deeply ensnared in the process their ancestors began. Under the model described.
            Feel free, if you want to expand on what you think the deeper psychology of it is, that you mention… The whole topic is very fascinating to speculate on imo.

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            1. Timr…
              perhaps what surprised you is that you know that i farm, and yet did not have a good word about farming. so the first thing i would like you to understand is that for me, farming is only the lesser evil; i do not really like it.
              And the same goes for living off grid and homeschooling. People think i am living out some grand ideal of mine when they hear how i live, but it is only the lesser evil that i choose. I would like to be part of civilization but how can i be? I would like to look up and admire , even adore something or someone in this world we call modern culture, but how can i? It is said that “unbelief is for the mob” and that is true in a way; to have to reject and rebel against absolutely everything is almost a plebian sentiment…a sentiment of resentment. But i am left no choice.(sorry for this very personal aside)

              you use the word “organic” and “ensnared” when asking about the process of the programmers/farmers. But i would say that throughout the generations human tendencies have become embedded literally in their genes. We can call it self domestication, and of course now, can say it all runs on its own; there IS a cabal of “evil” men at the top but they only think they are in control. Or are in control in a very limited way. Have you not have heard the story of the man who walks into a jewelry shop and asks to sell his diamond ring? The jeweler takes a close look and says, “I cannot buy this. there is a big scratch on the diamond” “I need the money” says the man, ” so give me any price.” The jeweler buys the diamond dirt cheap and as soon as the man leaves his shop, takes out his tools and turns the scratch into a pretty flower, and the next day sells it for a very handsome price.

              There is an element of free will and an element of environmental influence (the apple tree will certainly grow better in the cool mountains than a desert) but things now pretty much must take their course;

              the changes we see might be the jewelers turning mistakes to their advantage and you know, that is why these truther websites are left open: it helps the jewelers to see their mistakes and make the proper adjustments.

              i do not believe that the chicken or goats or alpacas i had can ever be wild; i mean even their babies; the pig can re-wild into a boar because it is fundamentally a wild beast but a few animals, it seems to me can never return to the wild. Man is one of those animals, and one can question if they were ever wild to begin with. Is it possible that some animals were made to be domesticated for mans use? Made not by man but by nature?

              Can those at the top stop being at the top. Look at your own life. There is so much we think of doing but we just continue on always , in pretty much the same way.; man is a creature motivated by fear and loves habit; what if those at the top are the same? we are all self programmed but the program seems based on the original nature of the beast.

              i have gotten lost here in this .. too scattered….too much i could say , but i hope i have answered your question..and ironically i have had to write this off the top of my head, without editing because i have to go out into the field this morning and prepare the soil for potatoes; planting season is around the corner….

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              1. DAVID,

                You might enjoy this recent article: https://thesaker.is/copenhagen-syndrome/
                Excerpt: “As Alexis de Tocqueville noted: ‘’Formerly tyranny used the clumsy weapons of chains and hangmen; (but) nowadays even despotism, though it seemed to have nothing more to learn, has been perfected by civilisation (sic) … ancient tyrannies which attempted to reach the soul, clumsily struck at the body, but the soul often escaping from such blows, rose gloriously above it.’’ But now modern democratic tyrannies leave the body alone and go straight for the soul.’’ (1)”

                And I found “Snow Leopard’s” comments most interesting, too: “Whilst waiting for my shrink I found in the Journal of the American Psychological Association (1980) an absolutely fascinating article entitled “The Totalitarian Ego.” The author had made a ground breaking comparison between the human ego mind’s desire to impose its “totalitarian” world view upon the inner psyche and the patterns of totalitarianism observable in Eastern European political dictatorships. The essence of the article being that the patterns of domination, control and repression found in totalitarian political dictatorships is replicated in the intra psychic relationship between the conscious ego and the soul (or the unconscious.) His psychological thesis was that all of our ego’s have a totalitarian drive in relations to our own deeper being. This internal (psychological) totalitarianism replicates itself en mass in the form of various structures of political and social totalitarianism. In short we all do it. Our own internal denial of this constitute our own personal “totalitarianism.” But let us all deny this together. The struggle to transcend our own internal totalitarianism is really the essence of individual personal and spiritual growth.”

                For me, the good news is this: Change is constant. There are things we can change and many we can’t. Individual spiritual growth and consciousness is, however, one area ripe with opportunities. The main obstacle seems to be — to me at least — the gargantuan size of out political, cultural and social structures. Small sized jurisdictions seem much more conducive to the innovation, creativity and interactions required for the peace and leisure lifestyle. It was small, city-states that produced most of the social and cultural foundational beliefs of “The West.” Unification and bigness turned beauty and genius ideas into the mechanical, simulations of today’s failed institutions. The bigger it gets i.e. global governance created from the wreckage (planned demolition) of failed states and empires, the less likely the poets, artists, musicians and philosophers typically needed to decentralize and bust up the hierarchies (death cults) in charge can emerge. Average man is never up to the task. Smaller is better, always.

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                1. Steve
                  That is a great quote from Tocqueville and even greater still, is that it was said so long ago; it is like the term “new age”; it is not really new; these ideas have been around for a long time. my personal opinion is that there is no solution to the problem of statecraft; injustice will always be there on some level and no State can ever insure justice for all, not even a stateless society, for they will morph quickly into a State once again…given our human natures.

                  what Tocqueville is saying basically is that modern democracies do not need to care what you do ; they only need to care what you think; once they have gotten control of your thinking, they know how you will act and know your actions will be impotent.

                  the little dictator inside ourselves will usually keep control of itself when the State is small, as you seem to imply; we could say that when the State is not so invasive, man does not need to psychoanalyze himself so much , does not need to look inward so compulsively; the State, which is now really just the Media, fucks with our mind so nonstop that we grow confused and compulsively unsure of ourselves.the solution is of course to stop letting the media inside your brains and it is possible to a large degree.

                  the only issue i would have with all that you said is your obvious distaste for hierarchies. Hierarchy is not something we can choose to have or not have; it exists EVERYWHERE, even among your internal organs inside your body, certainly in the animal world and certainly among human beings, psychological and spiritually and politically. Please consider this idea because modern mans rejection of hierarchy implies modern mans implicit acceptance of equality, and we are not all equal. Leaders must exist; followers must exist. stupid people and intelligent people must exist….etc. Once we accept that hierarchy is inevitable, and therefore desirable, things become more clear. Even the small sized jurisdictions you advocate includes a hierarchy; even the totalitarian personality you speak of includes a hierarchy.

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                  1. allow me though, steve to sum up the issue of hierarchy in just one sentence:

                    “one law for the ox and the lion is oppression”.

                    and related to this is the absurdity to believe that we can have majority rule and minority rights..so much for democracy eh?

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            2. This conversation reminds me of the Russian fox study, which you might enjoy reading about, if you haven’t before:

              https://sitn.hms.harvard.edu/flash/2019/foxy-behavior-russian-fox-farm-uncovered-basis-canine-domestication/

              I think it’s interesting that the study seems to zero in largely on serotonin, which is involved in depression/anti-depressants. Maybe people suffering from depression are just feeling the effects of not fitting in properly to this “domesticated” world? And so we tinker with their serotonin levels to “fix” this.

              I seem to remember watching a documentary on this a while back and (if my memory is right) a physical trait associated with domestication was a section of white fur at the back of the neck (like a lot of dogs have). I just found that intriguing.

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              1. Leaving aside all the interesting questions concerning which animals are feral, which are domesticated and which can be switched over and so on, what i detest in such studies that you have referenced is the fact that these studies are funded and monitored by people that will surely use the findings to hurt us even more. Make no mistake about it: ALL these thousands of research projects will be and already are coming back to haunt us. What is stronger in us, our will to resist or the chemicals inside us; i suspect the latter.

                Rob, we still eat meat, but have never eaten alot of it anyway, and we have no taste for red meat. it is the fresh eggs that we miss…. but it is quite easy to adjust.

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                1. Oh most definitely it will be (and is being) used against us. That has become so clear, hasn’t it!? There is this ominous little line in the article I linked: “Maybe one day the gene-to-behavior relationship will be understood in humans, as well.”

                  They are quite busily working on that one. Look into DREADDS. I’m not sure how the scientists working on that one explain away its terrifying implications and go merrily about their business.

                  And of course the animals involved in all these studies are treated just horrifically–a lot worse than farmed animals! I guess a pursuit based upon so much suffering could be said to be evil, no matter what the resulting information is used for.

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  6. David,

    I 100% know the type: A 60 yr old who goes out to mtns to do some long range .308 target practice. Been doing “sniper” crap for 15+ years, subscribing to “SHTF” scenarios.

    BUT, he had to jump through hoops 20+ years ago to “prove” he had some Injun blood in him…so as to collect “tribal” welfare.

    Collected well over 1M in that time frame, tax free…just for being Injun.

    People are assholes, really. They lie and lie and lie.

    What a patriot, right?

    He’s going to shoot the people who supply him w free money every 4 weeks?!?!

    I hope Mark will allow this post. We all have something to say and to relate to.

    BTE, said person also works for top notch company. IE double dipping due to “diversity”.

    Rastus

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    1. I am not sure if your trying to “type” me is serious but if it is you got my type SO WRONG. Tell me then, if serious I will reveal my type as I see myself.

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  7. I don’t think these folks are lying, per se. They certainly aren’t claiming that you are viewing live footage. they clearly say it’s a video snippet. Much ado about nothing, imo.

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