Economy

Connecting the dots between the cost of energy and such traditional measures of the economy as GDP, jobs, and the health of the US dollar, along with re-localization.

Local economy or local-washing?

Buy local

"Local" has become a buzzword. Today there’s eco-localism, local food and local farming, local media movements, as well as regional, state, and even national ad campaigns urging us to “eat local" and "buy local.” Local's gone global, but what exactly does the term mean anymore? David Levine, of the American Sustainable Business Council, discusses the “triple bottom line” of social, … [Read more...]

Consumer worldview not as entrenched as you think

consumer worldview

A worldview is a basic way of interpreting things and events that pervades a culture so thoroughly that it becomes that culture's concept of reality — what is good, what is important, what is sacred, and what is real.  It is so invasive that it is invisible. It is simply assumed to be true apart from any inquiry into its validity. If a worldview maintains that the emperor is clothed, then, even … [Read more...]

The cyber blitzkrieg

cybercrime

The forces of the perfect storm of climate change, energy tsunamis and global economic bubbles in collision are complex and varied; each with their own levels of threat and urgency. In this milieu, it’s easy to over-fixate on the more visible threats and downplay the others. Case in point: The Iranian nuclear showdown has dominated the news and polarized the geopolitical world. While … [Read more...]

Dollars are worthless without crude oil

Money as energy

In my previous post I drew some parallels between energy and money – and more specifically, energy and banking – and pointed out that when money is at stake, the presence of energy is likely lurking somewhere in the shadows. It was mostly hypotheses and observations I was throwing around about energy and banking, but when it comes to energy and money, one can hardly overstate the connection. Take … [Read more...]

Follow the energy to find the money

peat bricks

While the phrase "follow the money" is common parlance in progressive circles these days, a more relevant line of investigation for these peak oil times of ours might be, I think, "follow the energy." For as it is, the suggestion of "following the money" generally refers to something like following the trail of bread crumbs all the way to where the buck stops, one eventually coming upon a … [Read more...]

If you’re really for the economy then you’re also for the environment

stock trader at computer screen

I taught college logic for decades. Logical fallacies make me squirm. However, most people have errant ideas about logic. My undergraduate students always get huffy and insist that their "true premise" is logical. Logic examines process, prior to truth. A true conclusion can be arrived at if, and only if, the premises are true, and the process by which the argument is constructed is valid. … [Read more...]

Black Friday strikes back with ‘freedom to shop’

Blacklie Day 2013 screenshot

If you're rooting for humanity to survive much into the future, then you'll surely find yourself on the opposite side of the holiday shopping season from America's big retailers. If they're rooting for more sales, you may be rooting for consumers to buy less. People who care about climate change and peak oil want industry to stop trashing the planet. But industries that make money from selling … [Read more...]

Faith and trust in the system is collapsing

bridge collapsed

I began reading Dimitry Orlov’s recent publication, The Five Stages of Collapse: Survivors’ Toolkit, last week and it has got me thinking about his thesis with respect to the revelations around the U.S. surveillance system being used globally by the-powers-that-be (both corporate and political), in combination with the ongoing exposure of manipulation of various markets and interest … [Read more...]

Hopium for the masses, renewable energy edition

fuel cell car

As Derrick Jensen points out, this "culture as a whole and most of its members are insane." For my part, I continue to be surprised at the number of people who believe in infinite growth on a finite planet. I continue to be amazed at the number of people who believe a politician cares about them, and that their favorite politician will act in their best interests. I continue to be surprised … [Read more...]

How farmland became Canada’s hottest real estate market

Alberta farmland

Buy land, advised Mark Twain, because, as the punch line goes, they ain’t making any more of it. Fast forward to 2013 and that advice, as a look at prices for farmland shows, seems as prescient as ever. As any farmer will readily tell you, the agriculture business has had a tough run. Agriculture was once an economic mainstay. Turn back the clock to 1950 and the sector employed nearly a fifth … [Read more...]