Getting to the Heart of a Matter
Logic really should be taught in schools. But it isn't. Perhaps this is because so much of our current society is built on unexamined premises, that the powers that be would prefer stay unexamined. If you don't identify the base argument and validate whether it's true or not, then the entire foundation can be constructed on shifting sand. Bad inputs always lead to bad outputs. Garbage in, garbage out.
Logic can be boiled down to three simple steps: premise, inference and conclusion. It goes something like this:
Premise: Vaccines are safe and effective
Inference: Conjabs are vaccines
Conclusion: Ergo, conjabs are safe and effective
That's the end of the story! Trust the experts. You don't want to be one of those bad, misinformed, fringe minority anti-vaxxers, do you?
The puppies are doing well. I've been spreading the word in various groups about their soon to be adoptible status. I've seen trucks driving around for Soi Dog so I'm assuming they've resumed normal operations following all of the Covid shutdowns. I was disappointed to see on their website, proudly displayed of course, that all of their dogs and cats would be fixed, fully vaccinated and microchipped prior to being adopted.
I have no problem with some vaccines and most of my pets have been neutered or spayed. But I believe that animals, like children, are overvaccinated as animal health advocates pile on one thing after another with no consideration for the necessity or the cumulative damage. That all goes back to the premise I gave in the example above. If all vaccines are safe and effective, then more is always good, right? And since they are all safe, there is no need to titrate doses or test for antibodies before rejabbing them. A one pound teacup Yorkie can get the same exact dose of rabies vaccine as a 50 pound Bull Mastiff. This defies logic.
I avoid adopting animals from animal shelters because they seem to have shorter lifespans. The cats and dogs seem to be developing weird and aggressive cancers at 8 or 10 years old. When I was growing up our first cat Chessie lived to be 19 and many of the free kittens I gave away to friends lived to be 15 or 20. My husband's old dog Snow White lived to be 20 before succumbing to old age. She was given one rabies vaccine and spayed by an animal outreach charity in Phuket many years before. That was it. Microchips are touted as some sort of necessity for pets, but could these devices be fueling cancer? I think a simple collar with a name and phone number suffices in most situations.
That brings me to a second argument that I want to break down into its logical parts. Everybody knows that there's this massive pet overpopulation problem, right? Animal welfare groups are always asking for more donations on the basis of it. Here's how that breaks down.
Premise: Animals allowed to breed indiscriminately cause massive overpopulation, which is bad
Deduction: We need to do something to stop this impending catastrophe!
Conclusion: Neutering, spaying and humanely euthanizing unwanted animals is the right thing to do
Let's break down that premise first. According to Google, which is always the final arbitrer of true and factual information, a single breeding pair of cats and their offspring could potentially produce up to 420,000 kittens over the course of seven years! That's a lot of cats. This is of course based on calculator math by just adding in the amount of kittens a queen could potentially produce in a year and multiplying this all out. I'm sure they know this number is very high as it doesn't take into account any deaths, infertility et cetera. But of course it's designed to scare, so who cares if it is off by a few hundred thousand. Garbage inputs, garbage outputs.
Real science of course, should be done in the real world. I found exactly one animal rescue that bothered to do this. They ran a study of around 1400 feral cats in America. Notably they didn't pre emptively neuter or spay them. The feral queens (females) produced an average of 1.4 litters of kittens per year, averaging 3 kittens each. Around 75% of these kittens died before six months old.
These numbers align almost perfectly with my own personal feral cat study. Of our three queens over the course of one year, we had a total of 3 litters with 10 kittens born (Mama had 4 on her December 2021 litter, but one was stillborn). Only 3 if them survived, and our average was exactly one litter of three per year.
Feisty seems completely infertile, which is a first for me, but it makes sense. If there are infertile humans why wouldn't there be infertile cats? I'd give her a free spot on not being spayed just for the sake of science. If she came up pregnant at this point was it a new boy cat in the area that she liked, or a change in food or water supply? I'd be curious.
What I can say is that my three surviving cats (all male) born to three queens sounds nothing like I'm going to get anywhere near 420,000 in the next six years. Maybe I could get to 20 or 40. Maybe if I tried.
But those big statistical scary numbers that have been bandied about have been used to scare everyone into fixing their pets and as justification for killing "unwanted" pets. I'm not an animal rights advocate exactly, but if I'm going to be their proxy guardian, I'm going to guess that some things they probably won't like include being put in cages, surgically altered, jabbed constantly and eventually "humanely" killed for being perhaps unadoptable. I mean that's just common sense. I've volunteered at animal shelters and spay rabies jab and release I'm okay with. Some of the rest gets dicey. When I was growing up no vet would spay an already pregnant cat, because it was viewed as unethical. Now it's par for the course.
Some feral cat projects go so far as claiming that all of them should be killed. This is absurd. Here in backwoods Thailand, if you don't like cats around, then you clearly must like rats, bats and (sometimes venomous) snakes better. When we first moved into our backwoods there were very few people in the area and no cats. One guy a few doors down had an old female dog as we did. We had mice and rats climbing up the rafters of our bungalow at night, and bats flying around our bathroom at night. One rat gave birth to babies in the air conditioning unit in our car, creating a catastrophe when we turned it on. We were begging people for a cat back then. Now that I'm feeding 8 cats the rats and bats have conveniently disappeared.
Sometimes I think that the whole animal overpopulation problem theory is a precursor for the human overpopulation problem-reaction-solution. This is also phenomenally more complicated than the calculator math. There's clear signs that the problem may be tipping to depopulation instead. I couldn't find a kitten anywhere in Las Vegas, a city of over 2 million people, for my daughter two years ago. Some pet shelters and adoption events had six month old kittens, fully jabbed and microchipped of course. The closest Craigslist listing was in Los Angeles and they never got back to my inquiry. We found her kitten in rural Arkansas almost 2000 miles away. Our older daughter's dog came from the state of Georgia. The days of free kittens signs on street corners are long gone.
Nobody seems to ask relevant questions about these things, as lowering the pet population is universally seen as a great thing in the same way that lowering the human population is. Have things changed about the environment that should concern us about fertility in the future? There were 17 million unwanted pets in the 1980s and 2 million a few years ago, according to one of my mother's rescue charities. Anecdotally I've heard that pet breeders are having a lot more trouble producing babies than before. At what point does that concern us?
So let's move on to another logics query, which involves climate change. This one goes like this.
Premise: The climate is changing, due to excessive man made CO2
Deduction: We need to do something to stop this impending catastrophe!
Conclusion: We must limit man made CO2
Always find the premise first. Is the climate changing? I'd posit that the climate is always changing. There have been ice ages and periods of warmer temperatures centuries before man started supposedly emitting excessive CO2.
So climate change could then be caused by factors as wide ranging as solar activity such as the Grand Solar Minimum, Electromagnetic fields, geological disturbances and other things we mere mortals have little control over. But the powers that be want control over us, so those things are no good for them.
Of course climate change could be man made but not due to CO2. This could include weather modification technologies, excessive pollution and fracking causing Earthquakes, as examples. Desertification certainly effects the climate of the area.
But always stay on the first step. Find the premise. The whole argument is nonsense without it…