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This essay examines the role of communication in the formation of law and social norms and the implications of that role for animal law and ethics. Part III contextualizes animal law within contemporary risk society. Part IV looks at how efficiency has transformed from an economic concept into a normative guideline and discusses how that transformation has affected animals and agriculture. It tracks the rise of industrial agriculture and ties it to this fundamental misunderstanding of the concept of efficiency. The essay concludes with some thoughts on how to reformulate contemporary notions of efficiency and ethics to account for the idealism that should be a necessary component of communication and, consequently, of law.