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Peak oil went in the barrel — now the debate is over peak oil demand

General Ideas

When I started writing this column here a decade ago, I laid down several markers that might shove us sideways. Long before the word became a tech commonplace, I called the sum of these trends the Great Disruption. One was peak oil. This didn’t mean “the world about to run out of oil.” Instead, it […]


How the World Elites are Going to Betray us: Lessons from Roman History

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The more I study the story of the Roman Empire, the more I see the similarities with our world. Of course, history doesn’t always repeat itself, but it is impressive to note how with the start of the collapse of the Western Empire, the Roman elites abandoned the people to build themselves strongholds in safe […]


Its Not The Heat. It’s The Stupidity

Its Not The Heat. It’s The Stupidity thumbnail

With your sweaty host, Category5. (Thanks, J.T., J.S. and T.M. for the donations. Its been put to good use for a future article)   There is only one subject worth talking about. THE subject. The Heat. Ya. I know I said I wouldn’t be back till the winter once all the chores and Honey, Do […]


Why Collapse Is Leaving Americans In Shock

General Ideas

Have you ever been in a car crash? Do you know that weird, numb, nauseous, out-of-body feeling that hits, after the adrenaline fades? You’re in shock. Now imagine that you were in a car crash every day. How would you feel, after a month? Now consider the fact that we describe the world as a […]


American Society Would Collapse If It Weren’t for These 8 Myths

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Our society should’ve collapsed by now. You know that, right? No society should function with this level of inequality (with the possible exception of one of those prison planets in a “Star Wars” movie). Sixty-three percent of Americans can’t afford a $500 emergency. Yet Amazon head Jeff Bezos is now worth a record $141 billion. […]


The Seneca Glass: Half Full or Half Empty?

The Seneca Glass: Half Full or Half Empty? thumbnail

  Optimist: the glass is half full. Pessimist: the glass is half empty. Catastrophist. It will not be half full for long. Cornucopian: We are running into water rather than out of it. Oil executive: The water level grows more the more we drink from the glass. Conspiracy Theorist: Water? What water? THEY want us […]


You Can’t Stop A Wave But You Can Surf-3

ConsumptionGeneral Ideas

“The struggle with any addict is to produce permanent change.“   Part Three Just when things seem most dire, and there is no possible escape, we catch another faint flicker of hope. In my two previous installments I laid out the predicament. By now anyone who has followed this blog for a while (and a […]


Stop the hand-wringing, humankind will adapt and prosper

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When people go public with private tears I am immediately suspicious. Not that I am against tears; as a physical reaction to emotion they are a fact of life best controlled in some circumstances but uncontrollable in others. But articles, tweets and interviews that deliberately lob personal tears into the public domain sound the alarm […]


Are Things Getting Better or Worse?

General Ideas

Branko Milanović grew up in Yugoslavia, during the nineteen-sixties and seventies. He became an economist at the World Bank and then a professor at CUNY; on his blog, Globalinequality, he discusses economics and reminisces about the past. Recently, he published a post about his youth. He had been reading histories of the postwar decades, by […]


Empty by Suzanne Weyn (a Peak Oil Novel for Young Readers)

Empty by Suzanne Weyn (a Peak Oil Novel for Young Readers) thumbnail

Aimed at readers aged 12 to 14, this novel successfully blends high school drama and adventure with an important message about the world oil crisis. It was published in 2010, a time of mounting public concern over runaway energy costs. The book’s author, Suzanne Weyn, saw it as a means of raising awareness about the […]


James Howard Kunstler: The “coming” collapse? We’ve been collapsing since 2005.

General Ideas

I suppose many who think about the prospect of economic collapse imagine something like a Death Star implosion that simply obliterates the normal doings of daily life overnight, leaving everybody in a short, nasty, brutish, Hobbesian free-for-all that dumps the survivors in a replay of the Stone Age — without the consolation of golden ages […]


Oil shocks will hit region hard

General Ideas

Fuel prices are rising. More oil shocks have been predicted, and we remain unready to face a new age that is approaching rapidly. Some may not have heard of “peak oil”. If so, I suggest Googling it up. Alerts: This year Exxon Mobil has warned us to prepare for demand-driven oil shocks. Last year, Saudi […]


The Queen and the Philosopher: the hidden story of Boudica’s revolt against the Roman Empire

General Ideas

    We know very little about Queen Boudica of the Iceni (20 AD (?) – 61 AD) and most of what we know is probably deformed by Roman propaganda. But we may still be able to put together the main elements of her story and how it was that she almost threw the mighty […]


Why The Coming Oil Crunch Will Shock The World

General Ideas

My years working in corporate strategy taught me that every strategic framework, no matter how complex (some I worked on were hundreds of pages long), boils down to just two things: Where do you want to go? (Vision) How are you going to get there? (Resources) Vision is the easier one by far. You just […]


David Korowicz: A study of global system collapse

General Ideas

  [ I’ve extracted about half of Korowicz’s paper, left out the references, math, charts, and tables, so you might want to read the original document yourself.   This is a great explanation – one of the best – of the intertwined spheres of complexity (financial system, supply chains, oil production, electric grid, and so on) […]


Energy: A Human History – a Slim Slice of History and Science

General Ideas

“The population of the earth has increased more than sevenfold since 1850 – from one billion to seven and a half billion – primarily because of science and technology,” Richard Rhodes concludes at the end of his new book Energy: A Human History. “Far from threatening civilization, science, technology, and the prosperity they create will sustain […]


Well Gosh…….

General Ideas

I just came out of a meeting with two ministers of Finland. One was the Director of Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment of Finland. We were to discuss how to develop the battery industry in Finland. They openly discussed concepts like peak oil, hyperinflation, EU currency reset, Break up of EU into something else […]


Sargon and the Sea Peoples

General Ideas

“For hundreds of years, stories of marauding Sea Peoples were told to frightened children.“   Back in 4300 BCE, Sargon of Akkad found the grain farming good in the broad, flat alluvial valley between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers. Being an accomplished bully and not fond of toiling in the heat of the sun himself, […]


The Impossible Battle against Fake News: The Horse Manure Crisis in London

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Illustration and initial text from a recent post on WUWT Sometimes, I have this horrible feeling that the battle against fake news and propaganda is just impossible to win. The latest example is an article appeared on the unnamable WUWT blog, which repeats the story that someone in 1894 “predicted” that 9 feet of horse […]


Irv Mills: My Peak Oil Journey

General Ideas

For some time now I been intending to do a post about “My Peak Oil Journey”, describing how my understanding of Peak Oil has evolved over the years. I think it will fit nicely at this point in my series of autobiographical notes. Throughout the history of this blog I’ve focused on three of the […]


Facing The (Horrible) Future

General Ideas

I’d like to tell you a short story based on a movie that has had a profound impact on me. I’ll get to the story in a moment, but first, a little background on the movie… It’s called Griefwalker (by Tim Wilson) and it focuses on the life and wisdom of Stephen Jenkinson, a theologian and philosopher […]


Grief And Joy, 50 Years On

General Ideas

He who learns must suffer. And even in our sleep, pain that cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart, and in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom to us by the awful grace of God.   ~Aeschylus~   Note:  Part of this essay is an excerpt from my 2013 book Collapsing […]


Pope Francis To Discuss Climate Change With Big Oil

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At a time when investors are piling pressure on Big Oil to take climate change seriously, top executives from some of the major global oil companies will be discussing climate change next week at the Vatican with Pope Francis, who called on Catholics in 2015 to join the fight against climate change, Axios reported on […]


Waiting for Korowicz

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  The first named storm of the Atlantic Hurricane Season took out our power briefly, and while nothing we experienced can compare to the outage still being suffered in the Caribbean from the last hurricane season, this one, Alberto, was enough to remind us of the Korowicz Crunch. We have a standalone PV system on […]


7 Ways To Stay Alive In A Post-Collapse Society

7 Ways To Stay Alive In A Post-Collapse Society thumbnail

There have always been times where we inadvertently put ourselves in precarious situations. In this case, your best bet is to trust your gut. If you don’t feel the situation is right, find the nearest exit and leave the area. We covered some of these times in our most recent article regarding attackers and how […]


British Empire: how big was it and why did it collapse?

British Empire: how big was it and why did it collapse? thumbnail

At its peak, the British Empire was the largest the world has ever seen, and its legacy can still be felt keenly today, for better or worse. The territories it controlled ranged from tiny islands to vast segments of the world’s major continents. As the National Archives writes, the history of the British Empire is […]


Heinberg: Systems Thinking, Critical Thinking, and Personal Resilience

General Ideas

As a writer focused on the global sustainability crisis, I’m often asked how to deal with the stress of knowing—knowing, that is, that we humans have severely overshot Earth’s long-term carrying capacity, making a collapse of both civilization and Earth’s ecological systems likely; knowing that we are depleting Earth’s resources (including fossil fuels and minerals) […]


America 2018: Dicier By The Day

General Ideas

Scrape all this putrid excrescence off and we’re left with a non-fantasy reality: everything is getting dicier by the day. If we look beneath the cheery chatter of the financial media and the tiresomely repetitive Russian collusion narrative (that’s unraveling as the Ministry of Propaganda’s machinations are exposed), we find that America in 2018 is dicier by the […]


The Russians Aren’t Coming

The Russians Aren’t Coming thumbnail

“What exactly is our strategy for the Malthusian predicament?“   In his autobiography, Hollywood director, Norman Jewison describes meeting John Wayne at a party. “Have you met Norman Jewison? The film director?” I looked down the long flight of stairs, shirtless and clutching my pants. John Wayne stared back, swaying slightly and holding a large […]


The Taste of Another’s Thoughts

General Ideas

We’ve taken a somewhat rambling route in our discussion of how each of us can haul ourselves up out of the swamp of abstractions in which modern industrial society is sinking fast, and find our way to the solid ground of things that actually matter. I know some of my readers have been baffled or […]


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Saudi Arabia … - taking Saudi Armco public - while pushing @Tesla to go private … to me is a clear sign that the “#PeakOil shit” is starting to hit the fan Buckle up. The next 10 years will be a bumpy ride.