Tuesday, March 11, 2008

premature armageddon?

I've got a picture of my mum in front of one of these cars in about 1955, posing in front of it as if she owns it. Back then the very idea of owning a car at any point in the future would have been a fantasy. Little did she know that she was in at the start of the most economically successful period in Earth's history. Fifty years later she lives in a 'nice' bungalow, has had plenty of cars, foreign holidays and few problems along the way. I think we already envy our parents' generation.

Back in 2008 things seem to be going terribly awry. The markets have been disturbed since August 2007 and still have a long way to fall. House prices are on the edge of a precipice. Soon that Thatcher favourite 'unemployment' will become fashionable again. But this time the reasons aren't self-indulgent Thatcherite socialism grinding the middle classes down, but the looming spectre of Peak Oil with its mischievous chum Climate Change in tail. These changes will be permanent and worsening.

There's a classic line in 'The Day After Tomorrow' when Raymond, the Vice-President, announces 'The economy is every bit as fragile as the environment'. He was magnificently correct, though perhaps not in the way he meant. The economy is actually far more fragile, and it is in crumbling economies that the real horrors of PO and CC will hit us all - except for those of us that have been preparing for it for decades of course.

And this current government's madness, supported by an ill-educated and nostalgic public, just keeps compounding it. Adding to the madness of a proposed new runway for Heathrow our socialist masters are now threatening a new runway at Stanstead! Just how are all these new planes going to actually fly? Idiots. A new coal-fuelled power station in Kent has been given the go ahead, and the minister responsible says 'we can't let the lights go out.' Well they will when the coal runs out moron! Nuclear has to be the way forward, supported by a huge increase in sustainables coupled with a massive energy saving programme. This is kids' stuff.

These are the first signs that fear is gripping 'our' 'government' as Peak Oil realities begin to change the very nature of politics. At least they are starting to extinguish democracy, a necessary precursor to putting through workable measures to alleviate the problems. The little sheep, watching the latest storm lash our towns on the telly, are bleating their last little protests as the wolves begin to emerge from the forests ...
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