[ExI] Don't be a locavore fundamentalist

Giulio Prisco (2nd email) eschatoon at gmail.com
Sun Sep 27 14:11:17 UTC 2009

Interesting: "[food] is an effective way of signalling social status,
culture and values to oneself and others"

I only like "working class" food, greasy food, full of all sort of
unhealthy elements. I don't like vegetables and eat fruit only as a
medicine any now and then. Give me pasta with metaballs and a lot of
sauce, sausages, grilled meat and thick bean soups. I mostly like
things which I can eat with a spoon. Yes, before I forget it, I am a
smoker too, and a unrepentant one.

These things may well send a social status message. Well, screw social
status then.


On Sun, Sep 27, 2009 at 2:43 PM, Anders Sandberg <asa at nada.kth.se> wrote:
> Food is the new religion: besides having presumed effects on you (that are
> expounded by an expert priesthood), it is an effective way of signalling
> social status, culture and values to oneself and others. And since many of
> the facts are relatively hard to check, there is little pesky falsification
> of beliefs. A locavore (or Atkins dieter or organic fan) is very unlikely to
> hold their views because they are the most rational views given known
> evidence, but will easily get reinforcement in the form of placebo,
> selective news and various social feedback processes.
> The reason we have these food fashions and food religions is of course that
> food is cheap, plentiful and has a high diversity. And that is fundamentally
> a free market effect.
> It is so plentiful that you cannot show status by eating lot of food, or
> even eating expensive food - you need to show off by eating the "right"
> food, as defined by a complex discourse that takes some effort to follow and
> puts you in the same group as other high status people. That the facts the
> group claims as reasons may be completely unfounded is irrelevant. There is
> a free market of ideas and group membership too, and correctness is
> unfortunately just one price factor.
> My suggestion is that we form our own high-status food-cult, "rational
> eaters". We want food that actually *is* good for us, the environment and
> the rest of mankind. Of course, researching it and getting it is going to be
> a major undertaking - which is good, since that demonstrates committment and
> makes the group more impressive. Sometimes you can have your cake and eat it
> too.
> --
> Anders Sandberg
> Future of Humanity Institute
> Philosophy Faculty of Oxford University
> _______________________________________________
> extropy-chat mailing list
> extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org
> http://lists.extropy.org/mailman/listinfo.cgi/extropy-chat

Giulio Prisco
aka Eschatoon Magic

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