Is Capitalism to Blame? Animal Lives in the Marketplace

Journal of Animal Ethics 5 (2):126-134 (2015)
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Increasing efficient production of commercial animal products has resulted in decreased quality of life and shorter life spans for animals being farmed and bred. Should this animal welfareproblem be blamed on farmers or consumers? Or should we blame the capitalist system? I argue that those elements that make the market economy successful also result in poor outcomes for animals in the system. Understanding the way in which capitalism is the problem allows us to think clearly about what reforms are necessary to improve the lives of nonhuman animals.



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Steven McMullen
Hope College

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