Peak Oil – A Change is Gonna Come

The world supply of oil is slowly diminishing – and by ‘slowly’ I mean within our lifetime…and this could/will get ugly (‘end of suburbia’ – movie I just saw). We need to wake up and start challenging our gov’t to take this plight seriously.

The America’s absolutely rely on oil as a way of life and economy. The peak time of the use of oil is actually happening right now – and may even be slowly in decline (ie: this rising gas prices/energy prices). This doesn’t seem like much of an issue (except for our cars) but once one considers that oil is used in every aspect of the society we live in – and there is no replacement at this point – we might see an economic crash similar to that of the 1920’s.

The problem with the issue is it so overlooked and not taken very seriously – yet financially – this is the worst nightmare any of us can dream of in a capitalistic society. This economic collapse will destroy life as we know at (well the convenience of it). We could be looking at lack of electricity and energy (to heat homes), cars will no longer be the main mode of transportation, housing markets will deplete and lose their value, big business will lose it’s ability to transport things so it will eventually ‘crash’ and ‘destabilize’, and the value of our money might not be worth a dime.

It’s a little gloomy and a little doomy – but hey – we built this city – we have to live with it. The film gives some clues to making life easier in this peak oil crisis. Neighborhoods need to ban together and start working towards viable clothing and food options within their sphere of living (ex: gardens and the return of the local small business owner). Business needs to be localized to make travel to work affordable and possible (no more 1 hour drives). There are small answers to big problems.

But this is a lesson we learned so damn late at the local ‘hoe-down’s’ of big business’ profit driving machine – they played and played and we danced and danced – this is a ‘pied piper’ type thing – in this ‘rat race’ someone has to pay (drown). Take a good hard look at the reality of life as you know it – see the kingdoms big business has built for us to live in – the convenience – the cities – the infrastructure – the toys – the technology – the happiness. You know I almost think they know we are ‘as stupid as we look’.

Who do you think walks away with hope in an economic boom and an economic crash? We needed to start making these businesses accountable for their greed and stripping of the world resources for our happiness – but the media machine and politicians make this impossible (they limit our knowledge). I believe the saying is ‘we reap what we sow’ – well we live in a country that has effectively undermined the stability of this planet and something strange is going to happen – we are going to realize forms of poverty for the lack of compassion we had on other impoverished nations and for our greed.

But if you think I am yanking your crank – go check it out and see how dependant America is on oil and our viable options for energy (in the future). I had never really thought about this but I knew the ‘good times’ couldn’t last forever (economically). This issue is worth a look into and worth your examination – so you can both condemn the practices of big business (call for accountability) and see what you can do before the oil drains to a screeching halt.

It’s only fitting I grew up poor.

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10 thoughts on “Peak Oil – A Change is Gonna Come

  1. I saw this film about a year ago. It is an important film. I was depressed for several months following. In fact, the realization has really changed my outlook. For those who are coming to terms with Peak Oil, there are plenty of websites that are helping folks cope. It may not be at all what End of Suburbia proposes. It is possible that when we really feel the economic crunch, that we will respond.

    I might suggest the following Running on Empty 3 for those just coming to terms and want others with whom to speak or Running On Empty 2 for those who are doing practical things to prepare.

  2. The love of money isn’t the only pied piper in town. It’s also the media offering it’s praise to the green fanatics.

    As the world becomes richer it turns to the falses kisses of public support.

  3. That doesn’t make any sense.

    It’s not like they’re going to reach an end of the oil supply anytime soon. In fact, the oil companies have issued statements from their analysts saying there’s a lot more oil than anyone predicted.

    But suppose there is an end in our lifetime (which is what the oil companies don’t want because they don’t make any money) … there’s no way it would happen at once. Can you see the headlines “The World Abruptly Runs Out Of Oil!”?

    What will happen is this: as the supply begins to run out (and by the way, we haven’t peaked yet … and I don’t think we’re even close) the cost will also increase. As costs increase people will look to alternative energies (which will probably be a lot more advanced in that day anyway).

    Historically speaking, regulating business only leads to poverty for everyone. The ones who make the most money are quite literally the ones who do the most for the consumers …

    Government mandates, on the other hand, can hide lost money in ways that a bankrupt company cannot. Regulations are the artificial way of fixing a problem with a solution that will do more harm than good by means of envying the rich. Market conditions (with minimal intervention) will lead to measured investment into the research and development of alternative energies.

    Anyone who tells you biofuel, wind and solar power are currently strong enough to run our world is selling you a delusion.

    Matthew Canonicus

  4. “It’s also the media offering it’s praise to the green fanatics. As the world becomes richer it turns to the falses kisses of public support.” (BB)

    Sad to say BB, even if this was about money (which it is not) or a political view (which it is also not) the simple fact is always going to remain – oil is not an endless supply (what goes up – must come down at some point). The oil train is going to ‘run out’ at some point.

    But you explain to me – what is wrong with being environmentally friendly anyways? I rather think being more responsible with the environment is actually likely better than not.

    “But suppose there is an end in our lifetime (which is what the oil companies don’t want because they don’t make any money) … there’s no way it would happen at once. Can you see the headlines “The World Abruptly Runs Out Of Oil!”?” (Matt)

    Irregardless of money (why is this even a point exactly?) the oil supply will no longer meet demand at some point. There is no abrupt ‘end of oil’ – but there will be a raising in gas prices and energy costs (already exists in the last 7 years easily) – at some point this trend of supply will not be able to meet demand and then we have a serious problem.

    Whether the oil companies like it or not – this is a resource that can be depleted…no amount of money can change that concern.

    “Historically speaking, regulating business only leads to poverty for everyone” (Matt)

    Study some areas of Canada – namely Saskatchewan – all our amenities are gov’t run (including health and social services) – and we actually have a pretty great society. What makes me think gov;t is going to be less responsible than big business? Who of the 2 is extremely concerned with profit?

    “Market conditions (with minimal intervention) will lead to measured investment into the research and development of alternative energies.” (Matt)

    By who? Oil companies looking for alternative fuels? You have already stated that solar, wind, and biofuel are inherently weak at this point…doesn’t that tell you something right there? Companies don’t think this is a huge issue – same thing they say about global warming – yet plenty of scientists are coming out proclaiming ‘there is a problem’ – but while we wait for absolutely conclusive evidence things are depleting irregardless.

    I just think your hope that business/the market will save the day is quite unfounded (the market is not concerned with life saving techniques but profit) – those companies are not concerned as they have proven in times past…hell if they could get away with pollution they still would for the sake of profit…but they got called on that BS. Now we have to call on these same corporate giants to solce an energy crisis (which is looming) – and they might not invest until they see the actual problem.

    I just think arguing market ethics or gov’t involvement is a joke – these are actual problems that neither will do anything about unless we voice our concern anyways (consumers/voters). Ignoring the problem cause there is no problem now is tantamount to hiding our heads in the sand.

  5. “But you explain to me – what is wrong with being environmentally friendly anyways? I rather think being more responsible with the environment is actually likely better than not.” SocietyVs

    To be sure, I have nothing against environmentalism (I have even been known -at times- to recycle!). My only objection is their bias about it. James says that religion should fight polution (as in the truly religious should keep themselves being polluted by the world) … but, of course, environmentalism could not care less concerning that pollution because it is on the inside and environmentalism only cares about the external.

    Have you considered the lilies of the field? They do not trade carbon credits or worry about what will happen when all the nitrogen leaves the soil, yet God gives them all the energy they need. And if that is how God provides for the needs of the grass which is here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, how much more will he provide for you, O you of little faith?

    Take care, Jason.

  6. “Study some areas of Canada – namely Saskatchewan – all our amenities are gov’t run (including health and social services) – and we actually have a pretty great society. What makes me think gov;t is going to be less responsible than big business? Who of the 2 is extremely concerned with profit?”

    (Shuddering) May the economy of the United States never resemble Canada, although I think Harper has some good things in store for the country.

    I would say business is a little too lazy to be “extremely” concerned with profit, but the government is extremely conerned -extremely concerned with wasting money on forms, regulations, beaurocracy, commissions, (as the British say) empty suits, subsidies, and others who do nothing for individual people … only “society” which (as Thatcher correctly observed) is a made-up term for an imaginary being.

    In fact, the only thing government wants to do (more than wasting money) is to steal money from those who are actually providing for the demands of the consumers.

    Business cares about the needs of the consumers. If you took up all the government studies and combined them, it would not compare to the market research done by businesses to actually give people what they want. Government only cares about looking ‘holier than thou’ in the newspapers.

    Here is my point about the money: business cares about demand. Most cars do not run on ethanol because there is not enough demand for it. I’m sure there are a lot of liberals out there that want to regulate the auto industry to the outrageous extent that all cars would run on ethanol, and then they’d congratulate each other and say, “Look! We’ve reduced our foreign dependence on oil!”

    In the meantime people would be paying through their noses for the super expensive ethanol at the pump and in taxes (because ethanol is totally subsidized).

    If ethanol has anything to offer our energy needs we might as well switch over to it when it becomes cost effective instead of burdening the people with the cost of switching to a currently ineffecient method before we are ready for it.

    Another thing: to say we are in an oil crisis is a joke. We pay FAR LESS money today (adjusted for inflation) than we did during the interventionalist Jimmy Carter of the 1970’s. When government gets involved the costs sky-rocket with cost and taxes. We should use the oil we have left in proportion to our demand for it and they accessibility we have to its many sources.

    The scientists keep talking about doomsday, but they are totally disconnected from what individuals like you and me actually care about. We would all do a lot better to disregard the biases of the associated scientists.

    Matthew Canonicus

  7. Thanks John, BB, and Matthew for the comments – has given me a lot to consider.

    I think environmentalism is a huge thing for Christians – considering the story of Adam – who was given the responsibility of the animals and plants (Gen 1:26-31). Even if the story is mythology – the idea behind it is not – ‘care for your surroundings’. I think there is some honus on the Christian person to take care of the world around them – or at the least – be responsible with it (since it is our livelihood).

    As for the oil crisis I can only hope that Matthew is right on this and the scientists/economists that are making these calls are wrong. If Matthew is right – we have very little to worry about – but the amount of worry is not really my concern irregardless. My concern is in fact being honest about the concerns we have to weigh – and this (possible oil crisis) is one of them.

    I am not 100% sure about the idea – but if we know something aforehand and do not prepare for it – we are the grasshopper who watched the ant prepare for harsh conditions and did not – in the end – he went to the ant for help – it would be extremely sad if the Christian religion is the one that learns this lesson and does not do what the ant does (has no salvation to offer anymore) – since we have this example in Proverbs (and Joseph’s story in Genesis) – Proverbs 6:6-11.

  8. I have a recording of a show I watched on TV a few years back called “Advertizing and the end of the World”. I found it very well done. The basic premise is that marketing will continue to sell us more and more stuff until the global economy simply falls into complete chaos. There were no exact timelines but basically we are likely looking at up to 50 years for the first major decline and once it starts it will have a ripple effect that will bring the rest down quickly. The guy who directed (or produced) it was very well educated in demographics and ecology (or business economics?).

    I find it very hard to disagree with predictions of this sort. Just look at the numbers that show a rapidly growing demand like the world has never seen before, and at the same time the world’s resources are rapidly decreasing.
    We will come to the point where we will simply cannot keep up to demand. Gas, electricity, water, food, the essentials will become very expensive. It is not hard for me to imagine a panicked and completely desperate society. Pampered by years of enjoying the conveniences of life, having to do all they can to adapt to a hard way of life. The rule of law is highly comprimised now, just wait until %40 or more of the people are fighting just to survive!

    If this happens in my lifetime, I hope to be able to reach as many as I can with the message of salvation and peace that can only be found in God in the face of disaster.

  9. Hey Society,

    This is something I think about a lot and you may think this is weird but an economic crash may just be what our society needs to bring us back to a more realistic value system. When we pray and ask God to turn our nation back to God…well, this may be the vehicle that He uses to bring many to repentance. I for one am sick of everything being ‘old’ in three years and tossed out for something new. If I see anymore granite and stainless steel, I think I’ll puke. Especially when I know most people will be ripping it all out in five years or so for another ‘high-end’ fad. People don’t just build houses these days, they build palaces. We are conspicously consuming everything. Materialism is a great sin. It replaces faith and reliance upon an unseen God with that which can be seen and touched and brings glory to ourselves. Yuck! I grew up poor too but I did so in the country rather than the city and that is a big difference. The land provided most everything we needed and we sure didn’t think we needed as most folks think they do now.

    A Tamayan proverb, “Beware of those who bring in filth and poverty upon their tongues.”

    It is possible to be poor in material wealth and yet be spiritually rich. The second is the wealth that I prefer.

    Pam

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