Author Topic: Can animals be b*stards?  (Read 608 times)

Offline Wolfgang

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Can animals be b*stards?
« on: Jun 14, 2018, 10:30:41 PM »
Do they have the moral agency? And if not can people really say wild animals are better than us because they aren't cruel, they don't unsustainably devour the whole planet etc.? 

I think that they would if they could and to the best of each species's ability they do.  Apes bully and are cruel to reinforce their social structure.  Rabbit populations zigzag all over the place because they can't maintain sustainable consumption. We all know about the ducks.  Beavers I'll have to read up on.

Does all life helplessly exploit everything it can?  Native Americans are honoured for not pillaging their environment but they didn't have the wheel to help them.  We are now able to recognise unsustainable exploitation but within the scale of history we're still screeching to a halt.

So do we congratulate animals for not having the capacity to do worse than us or is our view of ourselves as uniquely bad just another form of self-regard?
« Last Edit: Jun 14, 2018, 11:58:50 PM by Wolfgang »
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Offline Top

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Re: Can animals be b*stards?
« Reply #1 on: Jun 14, 2018, 11:20:24 PM »
No. Animals, like small children, donít have empathy and while youíre not aware that anything else feels, you canít really be guilty of fucking them over. Hugo Chavez loves me, Hugo Chavez would die for me but he has no understanding that I might need or even want some of the food in the house, he would eat my last Rolo, after heíd eaten the rest of the packet.
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Re: Can animals be b*stards?
« Reply #2 on: Jun 14, 2018, 11:26:12 PM »
What about when dogs give up their last Rolo for another dog, which they do sometimes. Or at least space on the sofa, if the other dog is ill or old. Domestic dogs might not be the best examples though because presumably they all know that dinner will be reliably served.

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Re: Can animals be b*stards?
« Reply #3 on: Jun 14, 2018, 11:50:58 PM »
Iíve honestly never encountered a dog would would give up anything. They will shift up on the sofa because the other dog is a moving hot water bottle or more aggressive than them but thatís it.

I train my dogs to drop the food in their mouths, (we have a rabbits that breed in our bamboo so itís a just in case thing) but theyíre not Ďsharingí their just swapping food now for food shortly and a treat.
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Offline Madge Hooks

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Re: Can animals be b*stards?
« Reply #4 on: Jun 14, 2018, 11:55:33 PM »
Cats are pretty reprehensible and people tend to have negative feelings about wasps.

Offline Wolfgang

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Re: Can animals be b*stards?
« Reply #5 on: Jun 15, 2018, 12:00:21 AM »
Hence wild animals.  Pay attenshuns.  Have you not seen the big dog dragging the little dog out of the swimming pool?   Domestication complicates things so I'm putting it aside for now because experimenter interference principle.
« Last Edit: Jun 15, 2018, 12:11:33 AM by Wolfgang »
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Offline Madge Hooks

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Re: Can animals be b*stards?
« Reply #6 on: Jun 15, 2018, 12:08:05 AM »
Wild cats are pretty reprehensible and people tend to have negative feelings about wild wasps.

Offline Wolfgang

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Re: Can animals be b*stards?
« Reply #7 on: Jun 15, 2018, 12:13:14 AM »
Wild cats are pretty reprehensible
Their kittens can but don't meow because it's too risky re predators <3.
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Re: Can animals be b*stards?
« Reply #8 on: Jun 15, 2018, 12:29:36 AM »
Actually, Iím wrong, cow look after each other, the big cows will stand between Hugo Chavez and the calves while weíre walking past.

I also remember there was a mixed tank of fish in the Honiman and the fish of the same species as the baby fish stopped the bigger fish having them for lunch.

Maybe itís just my dogs and my cat.
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Offline Top

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Re: Can animals be b*stards?
« Reply #9 on: Jun 15, 2018, 12:32:43 AM »
But maybe thereís nothing particularly altruistic about the survival of your species, maybe you can be a bastard and still feel something towards the continuation of your genes? Maybe thatís the last word in selfishness?
I'm reporting you to the mods for annoying me to the point where I become ill and have to take tranquillisers.  - Wolfie

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Re: Can animals be b*stards?
« Reply #10 on: Jun 15, 2018, 12:37:48 AM »
Can I mention an Alsation dog and a rabbit? They were friends. The dog ate from a bowl on one side of the fireplace and the rabbit had carrots on the other. Then the rabbit died. The dog pined. The owners got another rabbit.

Offline Wolfgang

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Re: Can animals be b*stards?
« Reply #11 on: Jun 15, 2018, 12:59:07 AM »
But maybe thereís nothing particularly altruistic about the survival of your species, maybe you can be a bastard and still feel something towards the continuation of your genes? Maybe thatís the last word in selfishness?
Well, according to The Selfish Gene, a person's willingness to (instinctively) endanger their own life to rescue a relative is directly proportional to that relative's consanguinuity.  So a sibling is twice as likely to be rescued as a half-sibling, who is twice as likely as a cousin, and so on.
« Last Edit: Jun 15, 2018, 01:01:13 AM by Wolfgang »
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Re: Can animals be b*stards?
« Reply #12 on: Jun 15, 2018, 01:22:02 AM »
But would everyone pull their missus out first even if, like my missus, their reproductive capabilities were a little past their best before date? Do the genuine positive feelings that one tends to have towards a lover override the genes we have in commos relatives most of us despise?

(Iíd save my dog over most humans, particularly the ones Iím related to).
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Re: Can animals be b*stards?
« Reply #13 on: Jun 15, 2018, 01:58:05 AM »
Probably, but who would you feel most guilt about if you had to leave them in?

Offline Musette

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Re: Can animals be b*stards?
« Reply #14 on: Jun 15, 2018, 02:17:56 AM »
I think most parents would save their children first, at the cost of their own life if necessary.
I say 'most' because I was out with a small group of mumfriends a few years ago, when our kids were still primary school age, and this subject came up. One of the women said that in a fire she'd save her husband rather than her children. Everyone was really shocked. In some ways I admire her bravery for admitting it, but I still struggle with the idea.

Animals - I don't have pets so can't comment on the domesticated variety. but I do remember seeing wildlife programmes where killer whales behave with what appears to be cruelty. One awful sequence where a gang of them doggedly pursued a mother whale of some sort and her calf until the baby is exhausted and the mother can't fend them off. The calf dies but the killer whales don't eat it, they just let it sink to the bottom, and swim off. In another they are chasing seals to eat, but instead of just catching them and eating them they spend a few minutes tossing the poor, still alive,  creatures into the air and catching them, apparently just for fun.
But do they realise they are being cruel? Or are we just imposing our interpretation on it?
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