Freeloading Freegans

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I generally file each post under different categories -- Environment, Science, Geekdom, etc... The one catch-all for other stuff is "Other" I am adding a new category today -- Anti Environmentalism. This is for reports that claim to be for the environment but are so devoid of awareness of the consequences, so bereft of basic science, such inarticulate spittle that they only do service to those friends of theirs who are drinking the same Kool Aid. Today's entry is about a splinter group -- Meet the Freegans From MS/NBC's Tucker Carlson:
'Freegans' choose to eat garbage
Organization tries to send political message by dumpster diving for meals

These people don�t eat out of dumpsters because they�re poor and desperate. They do it to prove a political point. You wouldn�t expect someone to choose a lifestyle that involved eating out of dumpsters. Kind of seems like something you do as a desperate last resort. But there�s an entire society of people who willingly get their meals out of the garbage. They�re called freegans, and they say they have a reason for doing it.

Madeline Nelson is a freegan and she joined Tucker Carlson to explain what cause is worth dumpster diving for meals.

TUCKER CARLSON, HOST, 'THE SITUATION': Why do you eat out of trash cans?
MADELINE NELSON, FREEGAN: Well, Tucker, it�s�I would say it�s a political choice as much as anything else. There�s so much waste in America. I think America is just an example of what�s going on. We�re at a point in our society where we�re throwing out tremendous amounts of perfectly usable food, clothing, electronics, et cetera, that a group of us think that it�s a perfectly rational choice to save that, to salvage that.

CARLSON: Well, I�m with you on the clothing and electronics. There�s a lot of waste in this country, and it bothers me. The food is in its own category. The reason we throw away food is not because food producers don�t want to make money�they do�but because they are afraid of being sued by people who get sick from food that is over its expiration date.
NELSON: Well, I can understand how most Americans would think that. So�in fact, though, the law was changed in the U.S. in 1981. There�s a good Samaritan law, and basically food that isn�t considered prime sellable food because it�s maybe a little bit wilted on the lettuce, a day old on the bread, that sort of thing, if you give that and you give it in good faith, you can�t be sued.
Typical liberal -- loose with the facts. The Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Food Donation Act was signed as public law 104-210 in 1996, not 1981 and it only protects against donations, not people dumpster diving. Sure, NELSON found "a half a case of arugula" but she doesn't know if it was in contact with a septic piece of chicken breast that had fallen to the floor of the loading dock and then been sitting in a hot dumpster for 12 hours before the wilted produce was chucked. And the rat feces and urine are pure and only add a certain piquancy to the meal... Did a bit of googling. On the 11th of January, this post on the VHEM website asked for:
Media Requests for Freegans & Dumpster Divers!! (updated) [11 Jan 2006|04:41pm], a group and website promoting freeganism, has gotten a ton of media requests lately from journalists all over the country who want to find local freegans to interview.

Freeganism is a lifestyle based around adapting practical strategies to minimize personal consumer impact, cut financial support for the capitalist system that is destroying the earth and human and animal lives, and create new methods for people to survive and thrive based on sharing, mutual aid, social responsibility, and ecological concern. Freegan practices include dumpster diving for food, clothing, funiture, etc., squatting buildings, guerilla gardening, train hopping, and more.
Sounds like it's time for a big group hug and a round of Kum-by-yah. (BTW - the proper spelling is "furniture" and "guerrilla") And if one of these mokes comes down with a case of Listeria or Staph, they will rush their little buns to the nearest hospital emergency room expecting the 'MAN' to pay for it all. It is curious how prolonged malnutrition will affect people's ability to think... And yeah, check out the VHEM philosophy -- from their website's FAQ:
Q: What is the Voluntary Human Extinction Movement?
VHEMT (pronounced vehement) is a movement not an organization. It's a movement advanced by people who care about life on planet Earth. We're not just a bunch of misanthropes and anti-social, Malthusian misfits, taking morbid delight whenever disaster strikes humans. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Voluntary human extinction is the humanitarian alternative to human disasters.

We don't carry on about how the human race has shown itself to be a greedy, amoral parasite on the once-healthy face of this planet. That type of negativity offers no solution to the inexorable horrors which human activity is causing.

Rather, The Movement presents an encouraging alternative to the callous exploitation and wholesale destruction of Earth's ecology.

As VHEMT Volunteers know, the hopeful alternative to the extinction of millions of species of plants and animals is the voluntary extinction of one species: Homo sapiens... us.

Each time another one of us decides to not add another one of us to the burgeoning billions already squatting on this ravaged planet, another ray of hope shines through the gloom.

When every human chooses to stop breeding, Earth's biosphere will be allowed to return to its former glory, and all remaining creatures will be free to live, die, evolve (if they believe in evolution), and will perhaps pass away, as so many of Mother Nature's "experiments" have done throughout the eons. Good health will be restored to the Earth's ecology... to the "life form" known by many as Gaia.

It's going to take all of us going.
They don't want to exercise their brains and improve things, they just want to live a long life and then bug out without having kids. The good aspect is that they are not breeding little VHEM'ers... Back to Freeganism -- Wikipedia has an article with this:
Freeganism in practice
Many freegans get free food by pulling it out of the trash, a practice commonly nicknamed dumpster-diving. Freegans claim to find ample amounts of clean, edible food in the garbage of restaurants, grocery stores, and other food-related industries, and this allows them to avoid spending money on products that exploit the world's resources, contribute to urban sprawl...
The freegans are themselves contributing to urban sprawl by living in urban areas. If they wanted to not contribute, they would move to a rural area. Lots of free food out there. There is a six to eight month lead time to get it and you need some land to grow it but it's out there if you want to work. Ahhhh... That four letter word. Work. Finally, from the freegan website:
The freegan spirit of cooperative empowerment can be extended into the workplace by organizing shops as part of worker-led unions like the Industrial Workers of the World.
Hmmm... The I.W.W. are Marxists... Wasn't Karl Marx the guy who got the idea for an ideological philosophy that has been directly responsible for the deaths of over one hundred million people in the last seventy years? Marx was a classic nut case as he claimed to represent the "working man" but he was actually an early prototype of today's trust-fund baby and although he went through law school, never had to work a day in his life. These are people who are bumbling through life with strong convictions, more than a touch of dementia and no clue about real life. Hat tip to Jen for the initial link!

1 Comment

E.L.F. qualifies in spades I think.

The 'political wing' of the group was on the radio circa 2000. It was an amazingly bizarre set of interviews where one belief 'anti-consumerism' was extrapolated to sheer insanity. Quotes like "We'd all be happier at subsistence level farming" and "What do you mean there's a problem with an all volunteer, non-profit (aka no pay) police force?". Wait... "But tribes always have _benign_ dictators!"

I nearly crashed _then_. Still mind-boggling.

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