Meatonomic$

Meatonomic$: How the Rigged Economics of Meat and Dairy Make You Consume Too Much–and How to Eat Better, Live Longer, and Spend Smarter, by David Robinson Simon.  Conari Press, 2013.

What a compelling argument for the huge economic cost, estimated at $414 billion, of Americans’ high meat consumption! Eating this amount of meat–three times the world average–is made possible for Americans by huge government subsidies and the astonishing political clout of the meat industry, among other factors. This is not just a rehash of meat consumption issues–I’ve read a lot of books that are–but will help readers see things from a fresh viewpoint; i.e. how much it is costing us as a country.
That alone would make the book worth reading, but there’s more: the author is a man with a plan. It is especially encouraging to read not just a lament about what’s wrong, but a detailed proposal for how to fix it, including the imposition of taxes on animal foods, a restructure of the USDA, and adjustment of federal support programs. He anticipates and discusses objections that may arise. Several appendices along with detailed endnotes and an index make it even more useful.
Reviewers’ superlatives–“spectacularly important” (John Robbins) and “ranks [with] . . . The China Study in its power to expose the truth” (Patti Breitman)–are well-earned. It’s only 185 pages: read it!

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