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

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Eight Energy Myths Explained

Click here to access article by Gail Tverberg from her blog Our Finite World.

I have followed Tverberg's articles for a number of years. She has demonstrated to me and many others that she knows of what she writes. She is widely respected for her research and knowledge about energy by her peers in the energy field. (Take a look at the quality and quantity of the responses she got from this article.) However, she has one serious limitation. She has been so well indoctrinated in the TINA view ("there is no alternative") that she cannot even consider any alternative to capitalism. To her it is an absolute given, an unalterable reality. 

Nevertheless, I have found her insights about energy extremely useful in understanding the huge conflict that the system of capitalism has for our survival. Whereas other energy specialists writing for capitalist media often engage in fanciful ideas such as fusion energy to deal with the doomed future of capitalism on a finite planet, she looks clearly and steadily at the evidence and can only reach one conclusion--we are facing a herculean task, if not an insoluble, dilemma. In this article she demolishes many such myths by people who refuse to face reality.
Republicans, Democrats, and environmentalists all have favorite energy myths. Even Peak Oil believers have favorite energy myths. The following are a few common mis-beliefs,  coming from a variety of energy perspectives. I will start with a recent myth, and then discuss some longer-standing ones.