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Behind enemy lines...

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  • James Ward
    I decided to do something a bit different this week. I decided to join a few online discussion boards that I thought would be less likely to share my views on
    Message 1 of 4 , Oct 2, 2007
      I decided to do something a bit different this week. I decided to
      join a few online discussion boards that I thought would be less
      likely to share my views on Peak Oil. I joined one called "I Support
      John Howard", another called "Kevin Rudd Will Ruin Australia", and
      so on.

      It's not that I think Peak Oil is (or should be) a political issue -
      as far as I'm concerned it doesn't matter whether you're on the left
      or right side of the plane, if it runs out of fuel you're going down.

      But I just guessed that Howard-supporters might potentially be the
      sort of people who would disagree with my take on Peak Oil.

      Boy, was I right.

      In fact, one of the moderators asked me to take the discussion
      elsewhere as "Peak Oil is not an election issue"... Riiiight.

      So, discussing Kevin Rudd entering a strip club IS an election
      issue, but discussing the imminent global decline in transportation
      energy apparently is not!

      Interestingly a lot of people seemed to confuse Peak Oil with
      Climate Change - they think if you're talking about one, they can
      talk about the other and you won't mind. So in response to a lot of
      Peak Oil questions, I got typical mantra chanted back at me,
      like "Australia only contributes 1% of greenhouse emissions, so why
      should we reduce?" - thus completely missing the point of Peak Oil.

      The hostility was astounding. The childish insults, mud-slinging,
      and outright ignorance was, well, I can't say unexpected, but it
      took me by surprise nonetheless.

      People generally argue against the Peak Oil position by saying
      there's plenty of oil reserves, which is missing the point: oil
      that's still stuck in the ground won't help you fill your car up.
      Peak Oil is about production rates, not reserve volumes.

      There was also a lot of talk about previous doom-and-gloom
      predictions not coming true, which obviously means no doom-and-gloom
      prediction will EVER come true.

      But the dogmatic adherence to the dismissal of the problem was what
      shocked me the most. You could almost see them putting their fingers
      in their ears and humming to block the noise out. These people have
      locked the door to rational discourse and swallowed the key. I am
      strongly reminded of religious discussions I've had with friends,
      where one person is so firmly set in their belief that any alternate
      viewpoint is seen as the work of Satan and is violently discarded.

      Middle-class Australian consumers are living in a time of
      unprecedented abundance, freedom and choice. Could it be that some
      people are so heavily addicted to this way of life that they
      perceive ANY questioning as being an insult to the freedom to which
      they are accustomed? Do they close the door to discussions about
      consumption rates, just as a fundamentalist Christian MIGHT close
      the door to discussions about Evolution?

      An image I have in my mind is a little kid, staying up late watching
      TV. The parent comes in and tries to take him to bed, knowing that
      if he goes to bed too late he'll be hellishly grumpy in the morning.
      But the kid won't budge, all he wants to do is watch TV now and who
      cares about tomorrow...
    • Geoff Capper
      James, you re brave taking that on! I think the main problem was you expected intelligence, rational thinking, etc, from people who are willing, if not keen,
      Message 2 of 4 , Oct 2, 2007
        James, you're brave taking that on! I think the main problem was you
        expected intelligence, rational thinking, etc, from people who are
        willing, if not keen, to join a group with a title like "I Support John
        Howard" (My apologies to those intelligent, PO believing Howard
        supporters out there, and condolences ;) )

        Geoff


        James Ward wrote:
        > I decided to do something a bit different this week. I decided to
        > join a few online discussion boards that I thought would be less
        > likely to share my views on Peak Oil. I joined one called "I Support
        > John Howard", another called "Kevin Rudd Will Ruin Australia", and
        > so on.
        >
        > It's not that I think Peak Oil is (or should be) a political issue -
        > as far as I'm concerned it doesn't matter whether you're on the left
        > or right side of the plane, if it runs out of fuel you're going down.
        >
        > But I just guessed that Howard-supporters might potentially be the
        > sort of people who would disagree with my take on Peak Oil.
        >
        > Boy, was I right.
        >
        > In fact, one of the moderators asked me to take the discussion
        > elsewhere as "Peak Oil is not an election issue"... Riiiight.
        >
        > So, discussing Kevin Rudd entering a strip club IS an election
        > issue, but discussing the imminent global decline in transportation
        > energy apparently is not!
        >
        > Interestingly a lot of people seemed to confuse Peak Oil with
        > Climate Change - they think if you're talking about one, they can
        > talk about the other and you won't mind. So in response to a lot of
        > Peak Oil questions, I got typical mantra chanted back at me,
        > like "Australia only contributes 1% of greenhouse emissions, so why
        > should we reduce?" - thus completely missing the point of Peak Oil.
        >
        > The hostility was astounding. The childish insults, mud-slinging,
        > and outright ignorance was, well, I can't say unexpected, but it
        > took me by surprise nonetheless.
        >
        > People generally argue against the Peak Oil position by saying
        > there's plenty of oil reserves, which is missing the point: oil
        > that's still stuck in the ground won't help you fill your car up.
        > Peak Oil is about production rates, not reserve volumes.
        >
        > There was also a lot of talk about previous doom-and-gloom
        > predictions not coming true, which obviously means no doom-and-gloom
        > prediction will EVER come true.
        >
        > But the dogmatic adherence to the dismissal of the problem was what
        > shocked me the most. You could almost see them putting their fingers
        > in their ears and humming to block the noise out. These people have
        > locked the door to rational discourse and swallowed the key. I am
        > strongly reminded of religious discussions I've had with friends,
        > where one person is so firmly set in their belief that any alternate
        > viewpoint is seen as the work of Satan and is violently discarded.
        >
        > Middle-class Australian consumers are living in a time of
        > unprecedented abundance, freedom and choice. Could it be that some
        > people are so heavily addicted to this way of life that they
        > perceive ANY questioning as being an insult to the freedom to which
        > they are accustomed? Do they close the door to discussions about
        > consumption rates, just as a fundamentalist Christian MIGHT close
        > the door to discussions about Evolution?
        >
        > An image I have in my mind is a little kid, staying up late watching
        > TV. The parent comes in and tries to take him to bed, knowing that
        > if he goes to bed too late he'll be hellishly grumpy in the morning.
        > But the kid won't budge, all he wants to do is watch TV now and who
        > cares about tomorrow...
        >
        >
        >
        >
        > Yahoo! Groups Links
        >
        >
        >
        >
      • bioboobies
        Yes, kudos to you... and you are right. People just do not want to know about anything that will upset their current way of being. It is all TOO HARD to
        Message 3 of 4 , Oct 2, 2007
          Yes, kudos to you... and you are right. People just do not want to
          know about anything that will "upset" their current way of being. It
          is all TOO HARD to think about.

          Dave


          --- In ASPO_Oz_YoungProf@yahoogroups.com, Geoff Capper
          <gcca.capper@...> wrote:
          >
          > James, you're brave taking that on! I think the main problem was you
          > expected intelligence, rational thinking, etc, from people who are
          > willing, if not keen, to join a group with a title like "I Support John
          > Howard" (My apologies to those intelligent, PO believing Howard
          > supporters out there, and condolences ;) )
          >
          > Geoff
          >
          >
          > James Ward wrote:
          > > I decided to do something a bit different this week. I decided to
          > > join a few online discussion boards that I thought would be less
          > > likely to share my views on Peak Oil. I joined one called "I Support
          > > John Howard", another called "Kevin Rudd Will Ruin Australia", and
          > > so on.
          > >
          > > It's not that I think Peak Oil is (or should be) a political issue -
          > > as far as I'm concerned it doesn't matter whether you're on the left
          > > or right side of the plane, if it runs out of fuel you're going down.
          > >
          > > But I just guessed that Howard-supporters might potentially be the
          > > sort of people who would disagree with my take on Peak Oil.
          > >
          > > Boy, was I right.
          > >
          > > In fact, one of the moderators asked me to take the discussion
          > > elsewhere as "Peak Oil is not an election issue"... Riiiight.
          > >
          > > So, discussing Kevin Rudd entering a strip club IS an election
          > > issue, but discussing the imminent global decline in transportation
          > > energy apparently is not!
          > >
          > > Interestingly a lot of people seemed to confuse Peak Oil with
          > > Climate Change - they think if you're talking about one, they can
          > > talk about the other and you won't mind. So in response to a lot of
          > > Peak Oil questions, I got typical mantra chanted back at me,
          > > like "Australia only contributes 1% of greenhouse emissions, so why
          > > should we reduce?" - thus completely missing the point of Peak Oil.
          > >
          > > The hostility was astounding. The childish insults, mud-slinging,
          > > and outright ignorance was, well, I can't say unexpected, but it
          > > took me by surprise nonetheless.
          > >
          > > People generally argue against the Peak Oil position by saying
          > > there's plenty of oil reserves, which is missing the point: oil
          > > that's still stuck in the ground won't help you fill your car up.
          > > Peak Oil is about production rates, not reserve volumes.
          > >
          > > There was also a lot of talk about previous doom-and-gloom
          > > predictions not coming true, which obviously means no doom-and-gloom
          > > prediction will EVER come true.
          > >
          > > But the dogmatic adherence to the dismissal of the problem was what
          > > shocked me the most. You could almost see them putting their fingers
          > > in their ears and humming to block the noise out. These people have
          > > locked the door to rational discourse and swallowed the key. I am
          > > strongly reminded of religious discussions I've had with friends,
          > > where one person is so firmly set in their belief that any alternate
          > > viewpoint is seen as the work of Satan and is violently discarded.
          > >
          > > Middle-class Australian consumers are living in a time of
          > > unprecedented abundance, freedom and choice. Could it be that some
          > > people are so heavily addicted to this way of life that they
          > > perceive ANY questioning as being an insult to the freedom to which
          > > they are accustomed? Do they close the door to discussions about
          > > consumption rates, just as a fundamentalist Christian MIGHT close
          > > the door to discussions about Evolution?
          > >
          > > An image I have in my mind is a little kid, staying up late watching
          > > TV. The parent comes in and tries to take him to bed, knowing that
          > > if he goes to bed too late he'll be hellishly grumpy in the morning.
          > > But the kid won't budge, all he wants to do is watch TV now and who
          > > cares about tomorrow...
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > > Yahoo! Groups Links
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > >
          >
        • Mark Johnson
          ... All valid points in this thread. Of course there s yet another reason for ignoring peak oil: Scientists are always inventing new things, so we ll have a
          Message 4 of 4 , Oct 2, 2007
            On Wednesday 03 October 2007 14:20, bioboobies wrote:
            > Yes, kudos to you... and you are right. People just do not want to
            > know about anything that will "upset" their current way of being. It
            > is all TOO HARD to think about.

            All valid points in this thread.

            Of course there's yet another reason for ignoring peak oil:

            "Scientists are always inventing new things, so we'll have a new system when
            oil runs out". I'm sure we've all heard that in our discussions too. The
            fact we need to start changing NOW seems to be of little concern. Perhaps as
            mentioned in this thread, many people will not and cannot listen to anything
            that means changing their way of life.

            As has been stated many of us just take things for granted in this day and
            age. What we have will "always" readily available.

            Sadly there's also and always will be people that believe our (Federal)
            Government. For a government that would "never ever" introduce a GST or
            sell-off Telstra, people still seem to believe the crap issued by our
            government.


            Mark
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