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Old Major eloquently depicts the lot of animals. In chapter one, he says:
"Now, comrades, what is the nature of this life of ours? Let us face it: our lives are miserable, laborious, and short. We are born, we are given just so much food as will keep the breath in our bodies, and those of us who are capable of it are forced to work to the last atom of our strength; and the very instant that our usefulness has come to an end we are slaughtered with hideous cruelty."
In chapter two we see what actually happens in the farm. It is a confirmation of Old Major's ranting about the evils of humans. Jones and his men confirm all that Old Major said.
"June came and the hay was almost ready for cutting. On Midsummer’s Eve, which was a Saturday, Mr. Jones went into Willingdon and got so drunk at the Red Lion that he did not come back till midday on Sunday. The men had milked the cows in the early morning and then had gone out rabbiting, without bothering to feed the animals. When Mr. Jones got back he immediately went to sleep on the drawing-room sofa with the News of the World over his face, so that when evening came, the animals were still unfed. At last they could stand it no longer."
After the philosophy called "Animalism" is formed, the animals point out that men are the only animal that only consumes and never brings forth anything. Here is what the animals say:
"Man serves the interests of no creature except himself. And among us animals let there be perfect unity, perfect comradeship in the struggle. All men are enemies. All animals are comrades."
The problem, therefore, according to Old Major is that man is selfish and only uses the animals for his own gain without any consideration.
The source of much of their troubles is of course Man and the fact that man makes them labor "to the last atom of their strength," but it is in some ways not just man. It is the fact that they do not benefit from their great labor. They toil, as previous posters stated, until they have used up every last bit of their usefulness but they do not get to enjoy the fruits of that labor, man does. So the cause of their problems is the fact that Man profits from their work, he gets their eggs, their strength plows his fields, he eats the meat they grow on their bodies, etc. So once they are free of Man, "the produce of [their] labour would be [their] own.
According to Old major the problem is that, humans make them work to much and they have to produce milk,eggs, and pork. And in the end they are killed or sold .
According to old major humans are the cause of all the animals problems without the the world would be better.
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