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Friday, March 11, 2016

oil economy lies 12


OIL ECONOMY LIES 12

Lie #10) The US is the land of plentiful resources and can recover from whatever calamity befalls us.

You don’t have to be smart to figure a lot of things out, merely persistent.  If you read something once and then endlessly parrot it, you can’t ever really figure out how things work.  If you can question all assumptions, realize all conclusions are supporting agendas, you can discard the misinformation by at least a little bit.  One example I am never bored of giving is the large scale bleating and gnashing of teeth about how a one world government is going to be created when the bankers get us involved in a world war to enslave us.  There are so many myths and lies and assumptions built into that simple statement that it would take at least one whole other article to detail it.  I’ll make it blessedly short by asking the following.  How can government centralize without the surplus energy required?  How can a world war be fought-conventionally as nuclear weapons aren’t a world war but a world species cleansing-without the resources we had the last time around?  And, how can a police state, a one world government or a dictatorship even be established if resource contraction destabilizes political organization?

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I hope you see the common thread.  Resources are exhausted, and the myth of American Plenty is now just a myth rather than an observable fact.  It is like looking at a picture of a woman in her 20’s, smoking hot, and claiming that she will be that way in fifty years.  One out of ten thousand perhaps can pull that off without plastic surgery, but by and large you won’t find many GGGILF’s ( great-great-grandmas I’d like to fornicate ).  It is just as hard to find a country or empire that has plentiful resources at its birth still having those resources after decades and centuries of exploitation and use and exponential population growth.  You can’t grow infinitely in a finite world.  And while it might be nice to believe you can do so, that ain’t how reality works.  It also doesn’t allow you to live like a credit card junkie for decades, suddenly lose your funding and not go through withdrawals.  Let’s say you were living on credit.  You had a mortgage, a tab with the electric company, a car payment, kids in college on loans, credit at the grocery store and payments matching well in excess of your income.  You were in fact taking new loans to pay the rest.  As soon as your credit is pulled, you are homeless with no way to get to work, your kids are unskilled and homeless and can’t support you.  You can’t buy food.  It all falls apart at once.

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And that is where we are as a country and an empire.  Our resource stream is our credit.  Every resource we use has more customers than the supply can match.  Every day the supply shrinks a bit as more customers are added.  At some point, across the board there will be too many shortages.  We live in thin walled hovels, requiring non stop grid power to be habitable, eating corn gruel grown on top of a shrinking aquifer shipped about using oil imported only as long as we can force exporters to accept our company script, allowing near unlimited immigration to maintain the illusion of increasing consumer demand.  How is lowering quality of goods to supply more people a Land Of Plenty?  We try to find more resources all the time, running faster at the gerbil wheel, staying steady at production levels all the while as more people demand more resources.  We went global and colonized most of the world and still our supplies are running out.  We will run faster and faster and one day soon the supply will go from steady to declining.  If it isn’t already there disguised by  manipulated statistics. 

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Just getting most folks to realize the lies of resource depletion is bad enough, but then you have to fight them to realize how much more serious those implications are than they believe.  They won’t believe in Peak Anything, then if they do they want to believe in Pillow Soft Landing And Joyous Blessed Recovery ( of which the Thousand Year Fracking Reich is a prime example ).  How many times do you see otherwise thoughtful intelligent people make stupid assumptions such as “the Four Corners civilization slowly immigrated outwards to relatives in surrounding communities until all the great buildings were abandoned”, “the Mayans cities slowly emptied as populations headed back to the rural villages” or “the Romans slowly lost power to the barbarian invaders”.  All assumptions that a combination of famine and pestilence and war due to resource contraction left most of the population time to leisurely and safely immigrate elsewhere.

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Now, I’m not saying that my assumption that cataclysmic immediate die-off is more correct than their assumption of slow decline.  I’m saying both are in fact assumptions.  Nobody can prove they are right.  I could point out that mass migrations overwhelm resources elsewhere and so you only move the mass die-off from one area to the next, but if you are wedded to the assumption that slow decline is in fact a fact rather than an assumption than you will automatically dismiss my assumption.  I only preach immediate die-off as assumed fact because it is the safer course of action.  Not because I can prove it will happen.  I am also saying that you had better choose your assumptions well as you are flipping a die/survive coin with your own existence on the line.  Question everything.  Right now it is fun brain tease, an intellectual exercise.  Tomorrow, a bit more serious perhaps. 

END SERIES.

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21 comments:

  1. I know you have hinted at in other posts, but a in depth look at the Lie "Technology Will Save Us" might be cool.

    Nuclear Fusion has been 20 years away for 40 years and still is just vaporware as we in the I.T. industry call non existent software. With "Peak Uranium" even many of our regular light water reactors may not be online in 20 years. Yes Thorium reactors have been designed and hold promise, but since there isn't one currently making power, bringing them online is still in the distant future and vaporware.

    What we must do, individually, forget counting on anyone in any type of government, is create a personal energy resiliency. No guarantees there either though. Some folks just hate the idea of Solar panels, and while I understand their Energy Return on Energy Invested (EROEI) is in the negative, just like commercial ethanol production, to me it still Energy in the Bank. Fortunately I trade Federal Reserve Notes for them and not energy units. This muddies their real cost, but I'm getting a bargain. Wind is also a necessary adaption. The biggest thing folks can do is to make their dwellings more efficient, because it's easier and cheaper to save a kilowatt hour than to install more panels or wind turbines.

    Transportation is going to bite many in the butt here real soon. We are on our oil binge right now. Cheap oil makes us forget 2008 prices and our eyes wander to the large SUV at the dealer, but what do you do with a full sized Suburban when gas is $5 a gallon? So what to do for those of us who "Have" to have a car? You can buy a hybrid or gasoline assisted, like the Volt. Buy a Tesla, Leaf or the coming Bolt, but electricity needs to be flowing or you have enough solar panels to charge it. (I believe this will last longer than cheap oil) Or you can buy an older vehicle that is either diesel or gasoline carbureted and use used vegetable oil or make your own ethanol respectively. These come with their own sets of problems too. Wood gas is also an option. Of course this is all dependent on the availability of any of those resources locally. If you are in the desert, solar is a good option with maybe an electric car, either factory made or self converted.

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    1. At this point, tech wishful thinking isn't really an article I want to write. I think I'm a bit burned out on it. Yet, I love that you suggested an article idea. I need them, so please continue.

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  2. Assume the worst of both worlds. Slow die off means little to no resources left after die-off. Fast die off means violence and no opportunity to adjust during the collapse.
    A mixture of both? no resources afterward, and violence with no opportunity to adjust during the collapse.
    Throw in the fact that the collapse will most likely be piecemeal (think Katrina type disasters where a region gets hit hard, and never gets really re-built, all the evacuees moving on to a lower level of living where ever they relocate to, putting more strain on the new area that will in turn be hit by its own disaster, like ripples of destruction in a pond of humanity.

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    1. I like how you think. Remember also, our collapse will be in Perfect Storms. Multiple issues at a time.

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  3. With regards to resource depletion, I've given this some thought James, and while there is no solution to turn back due to our population levels at this point, certain principles could be applied to the generation following the die off.

    Ultimately, living closer to the Earth in a more sustainable fashion would have been the answer to have prevented the problems that we are going to face in the near future. In order to have kept our resources in check with our population, the majority would have had to live in this manner, with a small segment of the population advancing on the technological front (Modern medical practices, space travel, since eventually the Earth will no longer be habitable, etc).

    I'm the minion that just finished reading the hippy survival guide to Y2K. In it, the author disclosed his disdain for industrialism and technology, and outlined a plan for pretty much everyone to resort back to small farm organic farming, as a save for our current situation. The idea is not without merit, but his plan falls short in that even in the late 90's when the book was written, our population levels were far beyond what the Earth could provide for through organic means. He wasn't wrong exactly, just a little late in his suggestions (You can actually learn a thing or two from a dirty hippy ;) ) Though I'm not sure that eliminating industrialism all together could work, unless everyone was willing to live in a medieval village setting?

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    1. Here is the issue, unsolved in the last seven + thousand years. If you live off the interest, you are sustainable. But if your neighbor lives off the principle, by mining rather than growing as it were, he can hold the military advantage and conquer you. Hence, it doesn't pay to live sustainably.

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    2. Yeah, I guess I forget that you eat, sleep, and breathe this stuff on a daily basis, before I toss these random comments out there. I suppose the only military advantage to the sustainable civilisation would be if it were in an easily defendable position such as Switzerland or Afghanistan. Then you actually stand a shot against the high tech invaders. You gotta hand it to the Afghani's, they did quite well up against the worlds two most powerful armies with just small arms and RPG's (David's Tool Kit strategy).

      I think that the all telling thing was that when the powerful army that doesn't do PC couldn't succeed over there, that you were pretty much just wasting your time by sending our now feminized pc military over there. At this point, our only military strength is our technological advantage; the left having utterly neutered the institution. Not that it hasn't been used for anything beyond corporate mercenary causes over the last several decades anyways.

      Too bad we weren't able to develop our space program enough to colonize beyond our own star system, so that we at least had the option to vacate this rock before all of this goes down. I hear tell that the helium-3 fusion might have shown some real promise had the technology been further explored. Only one problem; we had to go to the moon to get it.

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    3. Your comment wasn't so "random", since as you point out there are exceptions such as the Swiss and Afghans. Both were conquered before, but on a limited short term basis. Yes, this is my vocation rather than just my hobby, but I still have a lifetime of knowledge to go attain before I'm perfect. Well, the hair is perfect. The Afghans have been my hero's since my teens, them and the Kurds seem to be bad ass warriors rather than idiot Muslims. I agree with you on the Fem Corps. Too few soldiers anymore, and the institutions preclude having warriors almost by definition. Not saying the individuals aren't brave and skilled, just that those they serve handicap them. The only reason they aren't cannon fodder like the CW and the WW's are because there are so few there is at least a few concessions towards trying to keep some alive.

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    4. Which is why sustainable communities must be poor and/or geographically isolated AND with a militia capable of making an invasion a massively expensive/ unprofitable for the invaders. Even so changing technology can make remote places accessable, and uncover valuable resources in that place. Example Afghanistan.
      The back up plan for such areas should include the ability to fake being pacified, while still costing the invaders more than they would like. Eventually the invaders will move on and you can go back to what you were doing.

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    5. “The only reason they aren't cannon fodder like the CW and the WW's are because there are so few there is at least a few concessions towards trying to keep some alive.”

      That, and technology, which is more of a benefit of the times, rather than the elites actually caring about them. The fact that organizations like wounded warriors exist tells you that the PTB couldn't care less about them after they use them up. And even that organization's CEO and one other were caught skimming from the funds.

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    6. The only reason the Soviets and the USA did not win in Afghanistan is because of a lack of conviction in fighting the war because of political will. Not because of military power. Both the USA and Soviets could wipe Afghanistan off the map if they applied all the weapons they have to doing so. It would make either one unpopular across the globe and no one would want to live in Afghanistan for a while.

      But really what is in Afghanistan that is worth fighting for? Nothing as far as most people are concerned. I don't think the US should be there as I guess most reading this think the same thing. So it's not really a fight worth fighting. But it does continue to support the industrial military complex and it's grab for power and money.

      Chuck Findlay

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    7. Unless you actually kill all the people, you can't win a war in that country. Then, it would have to be radioactive to keep the Paki tribesmen re-inhabiting it. Hell, maybie even the Kurds might want to give it a go if there was a vacancy.

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    8. 407-even the concession towards technology is more profits to the rich. That is caring WHILE in the service, to conserve "resources". But, yeh, afterwards...

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    9. Chuck makes a good point. But with regards to a conventional war, I hold a healthy dose of skepticism? If the Soviets who aren't saddled with any of the PC notions that the U.S. is couldn't make a go of it, that leaves only nukes as a winning strategy.

      And how would it look for the only country that's ever nuked anyone, but constantly makes the accusation that if any other country were to obtain one, that they would be sure to use it, drops yet a second nuke on another country?

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    10. Also unmentioned is fighting a war during Peak Oil. The Soviets did, and we did to some extent in Vietnam, putting serious constraints on choices. The US fighting a war now is like the Brits fighting WWII. They looked good doing it but it was last grasp of a dead empire.

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  4. In the past migration has lessened die off but today there is no place to migrate to. A mass die off is all that is left. The main question is will it be war conventional, nuclear or biological ? Or famine starvation. Government's survive and thrive on war but NONE survive starvation/famine except those that go to war because of famine. Can technology save us sure once our numbers are reduced to under 1 billion. The trick is to be in the living 1 billion and not the dead 6 billion.

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    1. The whole globe is US modeled, urban hives away from mechanized farms, transportation of food a bottleneck. Which is why nobody wants to say the dreaded Peak word. The global population will go way under 1 billion at first. Fun times.

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  5. o lustrous haired one,
    i know that not all are believers but the Bible tells that one day the sun will go dark and the moon refuse to give its light.
    in this case, whether caused by asteroid damage or volcanic ash clouds, no solar panels will work and no wind, so goodbye to windmill power.
    just a thought.

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    1. And no crops will grow, so lack of personal power will be the least of your problems.

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  6. (You can’t grow infinitely in a finite world.)

    I've thought that this was impossible to do for years. TV news is always telling us that the economy grew (whatever given percent at the time) this month and any time it's not growing by some secret ever-expanding formula it's a BAD thing.

    I don't understand why it must get bigger every day forever. It doesn't make sense when you give it more then a few seconds thought. Why is it not OK to make the same money today that you did last month? I live below my income level so I always have money left over at the end of the month. If countries thought and acted this way we would have prosperity to the extreme.

    But socialism and unlimited spending and excessive credit have us on the path to demise. I don't think a real bump in the road is that far off.

    Last Summer I had a discussion with a fellow camper sitting around the camp fire and he was talking about the troubled economy and I said if the country lived as I do (more income then spending so I have money left over to save each month) the USA would be in great shape.

    He told me it doesn't work that way for a country. But I argued that income verses spending is the same principal be it a person or a country. I was wrong and he was right, I let it go as it's no good to beat your head against a wall.


    I can't fix the country, But I can improve my personal life. So that is what I've been doing for the last several years.

    If we hit hard times (even harder then now) I will survive. Fuel or no fuel I will survive for the actions I have and am taking to make my life better.

    Chuck Findlay

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    1. You're smarter than most because until we get to the position we can accept the consequences, nobody allows themselves to think about the facts. We can hear the words then make excuses why they aren't so. Well, they ain't so because we don't want them to be. It's a mental block. Infinite growth because we don't want anything else ( like believing in finite consequences, a limited collapse ).

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