Another note about line breeding is that you should take care to breed vertically (up and down the pedigree, ie mother to son, father to daughter, grandfather to great granddaughter) as opposed to horizontally (side to side in the pedigree, ie brother to sister, half brother to half sister). You run much less risk of problems when you do things this way. Although breeding half siblings can do wonderful things, it is also a really quick way to bring any genetic problems to the forefront.
I should also say, that when you are developing a new line or bringing back a line from the brink of extinction, you sometimes must breed imperfect animals and deal with the consequences. You still want to pick the best of what you've got and breed them together. This is called "breeding up" and it's a long road to perfection. You are much better off if you can find and buy, or breed to, extremely correct animals, but sometimes this just isn't possible.
Should I breed Ed Earl? Well there's that question again. Here's the thing..........I am breeding solely to get pork for my table. I have NO intention of selling Ed Earl's offspring as breeding stock. Every boar piglet will be castrated before leaving here and buyers of the gilts will know about the tail issue and that they are buying FEEDER pigs, not breeding stock.
One thing is for sure and certain, Ed Earl shouldn't be line bred, because the defect that caused the no tail in his brother could be masking an even deeper problem, or it could be nothing. I won't know until I've bred him and even then I may not know because I'll only be breeding him to one sow and genes cross differently in different animals. It isn't near the problem for someone like me, who is breeding solely for meat, as it would be for someone who was breeding to sell breeding stock to others. But again, when you have heritage animals with a limited gene pool you sometimes must do things you wouldn't do in a more optimal situation, but you still have to be honest and ethical in all you do. You should be honest and ethical in every aspect of your life, but that's not the topic for today.....hehehe!