Deliberate confusion and disinformation have, as ever, taken the driver's seat in a non-debate now dominated by slogan trading.
By Andrew McKillop
Published May 05, 2006
Today in Spring 2006 we are sliding into a genuine Oil Shock, even admitted by our admired and respected democratic leaders in the shape of emergency G7 Finance minister meetings, and the upcoming Summer Energy Security Summit of G8.
The G8 includes a now ambiguous Vladimir Putin: friend of the West, or a tyrannical price-gouging oil and gas exporter bent on humiliating the consumer world?
In the communication world, the media machine, political party apparatus, citizen associations and NGOs, and what is called the "scientific community" are already drifting fast, and far apart. It is already possible to know simultaneously that Peak Oil "doesn't exist" and that we are close to "the End of Oil".
In other words, deliberate confusion and disinformation have, as ever, taken the driver's seat in a non-debate now dominated by slogan trading.
Right at the start of the Darwin controversy, from about 1859 with the publication of Darwin's "Origins" masterwork, his evolutionary theory was mainly rejected outright. Not so very long after, however, it had become Official Science, and this for a variety of reasons.
One in particular, that continues right up to now, is that Darwinist notions can be used to rationalize and justify the New Economy and it credo of deliberately increasing economic inequality, to "sharpen competition".
Many other Darwinist notions are apparently very comforting not only to some defenders of scientific orthodoxy, but also to performers in the political circus. Such is the desire to ensure that confusion and incoherence reigns, that today, many US states school curriculums include not only Darwinist evolution, but also Creationism. Choose either one - you can only be wrong!
Darwin never directly said human beings are "descended from apes", and likewise nobody serious in the Peak Oil movement, to my knowledge, says that we are at "the end of oil". Yet this slogan is now everywhere, and is a red rag to the charging bulls of the bourse, or Growth Economy.
Through a vast irony, high priced oil, energy, metals, and and other raw materials are powerful drivers of economic growth. Any year-on-year chart of world economic and trade growth, and the oil price is almost a perfect fit: thus the raging bulls are getting exactly what they want: vintage economic growth.
This, however, is also "not wanted". In New Economy fairytale economics the growth of the economy is slow, sure and permanent (rather like Darwinian evolution), and oil is cheap, to prevent harmful inflation.
All kinds of other rationales are then larded over and filled in. For example the One Purely Evil Cartel, or OPEC, so-called in a Wall Street Journal editorial of 2003, should be denied cash because it will only use that for terror pursuits, or at best will buy too many Chinese and Indian goods, further increasing Chinese and Indian trade surpluses. This, of course, will further fuel the terrific and intensely oil-based industrial growth of these two real industrial superpowers of the 21st century.
The greatest problem with Darwinian evolution theory, apart from it being a theory that can never be verified - because we can't go back to the beginning of life on this planet and "see what happens" - is that no proof can be found of ongoing or contemporary evolution. Also, there are only missing links, and no common ancestors. Of course some die-hard Darwinists can howl at this brief summary, but Darwin theory is very, very shaky.
In the exact same way, Peak Oil Negationists, or defenders of the ever-full barrel, are improving their pitch and their research results due to constant discoveries of 'new oil' and 'near oil', which is then bolstered by 'revised estimates' a little more sophisticated than the revisions made by the 5 "Core OPEC" countries during the late 1980s, and miraculously never changed.
Yet the Peak Oil Negation message is not at all what the public media wants: here the most grotesque exaggeration and sensationalism is all that counts. Every Baghdad bombing atrocity has to be better than the previous, otherwise the public get bored.
Thus the Peak Oil Negation industry will have to work a lot harder. What is needed are one or two more Ghawars or Cantarells, nothing else will do! This could be assimilated to the Darwinists finding fossils of real flying reptiles, or even more sensational, flying amphibians that 'jumped the queue' on their reptile competitors and got into the air first.
The crushing absence of even trivial 'evolutionary step' fossils for almost any animal species you care to mention - and worse still for plants - was and is a major reason that Darwinism is essentially a myth, and not anything that could be called 'science'.
We note the clear connection: eagerly, or desperately seeking fossils to support a broken-back theory of the early 1800s (Darwin's first completed draft of "Origins" was in the 1830s) is very comparable to seeking fossil energy reserves absolutely anywhere on Earth. Darwin himself mused, in print, on the vast new reserves of fossils remains that would surely be found in South America, in Asia, the Poles, and under the oceans, which of course would prove his theory.
Today's last gasp of world oil prospecting nurtures huge hopes of Polar oil, aided by climate change stripping away the ice to get nearer the paydirt. Deep ocean oil, despite the significant problem of crustal thinning under the oceans and making it practically impossible to expect oil, is yet another Great Hope of those who rush to the defence of cheap energy. The bottom line is always: cheap energy.
As we already noted, and it is a simple and real truth, high oil nd energy prices drive world economic growth. This may be highly inconvenient to New Economy gurus working the Adam Smith conference circuit, but it is a fact. Still they bleat or roar: "High oil prices hurt growth", but with shrinking conviction and media attention.
Some have even gone off the radar scren on this subject. We can however be sure they will be back, when interest rates are hiked in strongarm manner, 0.5 percent at a time, to bring on the inflation "caused" by high oil prices, and then further hike interest rates, to "beat" inflation. This will also beat the economy and very surely reduce oil demand.
Whether or not it cuts oil prices by very much is another question. What will be the decline profile away from Peak Oil, in percent per year? Nobody knows, but informed guesses can be made. If the guess rate is around 3.5 percent per year, or even a little less than that, then it is likely oil prices will not shrink very much, and certainly not "collapse". The reasons for this are complex.
Since Darwin gave absolutely no scientific reasoning in coming to major conclusions, in many parts of his "origins" book, I can also economise on this tiresome detail - and leave it to the debating arena!
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