Over at The ArchDruid Report John Greer opines on our unwillingness to learn from history. This is especially timely in view of Obama's comments on the lack of jobs in many communities, which has not been alleviated by the government or others, thus leading to bitterness on the part of community members. Clinton may have called his wording 'elitist' but she is no less elitist with her effort to appear as 'one of the guys' downing boilermakers at a local bar. However, while Clinton and Obama trade barbs, with McCain chiming in from the sidelines, civilization burns oil and the moment of peak comes ever closer, with no advance planning by our leaders to mitigate the impact.
Greer's point is one worth considering. Take a look at the specialization that is occurring today and the farflung trade routes and global markets in place. While one can speculate as to how dire life may become as fossil fuels continue to rise in price, one cannot argue that it will be dire compared to today. Calling for a 'gas tax holiday' or 'energy independence' is simply pablum to spoon feed the masses. The hard truth, and it is hard to consider, is that our lifestyles must change.
The movie Blood of Heroes is set during a post-apocalyptic world. It could as easily been a post peak-oil world. The same people who gave us Mad Max strike again. The wealthy live protected lives while the rest of humanity struggles to survive. It's not the best movie in the genre, but worth watching in view of Greer's essay. Could it get that bad? Of course. Will it? Unknown.
The Roman collapse described by Greer and the book he references took place over 1600 years ago. Will we learn from their mistakes or continue our Happy Motoring lifestyle, waiting for something (enhanced technology, a new super giant oil field) or someone (our heirs) to solve the problem?