We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Four Possible BP-Style Extreme Energy Nightmares to Come

by Michael Klare from AlterNet, original source at Tom Dispatch. 
O’Reilly promised then that his firm [Chevron], like the other energy giants, would do whatever it took to secure this “difficult energy” to satisfy rising global demand.  And he proved a man of his word.  As a result, BP, Chevron, Exxon, and the rest of the energy giants launched a drive to obtain traditional fuels from hazardous locations, setting the stage for the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster and those sure to follow.  As long as the industry stays on this course, rather than undertaking the transition to an alternative energy future, more such catastrophes are inevitable, no matter how sophisticated the technology or scrupulous the oversight.
But, you see, capitalist regimes have no choice. Their system is built upon fossil fuels, and alternative energy sources cannot provide the every increasing energy needs of this system.

It's the goddam system, stupid!