Notes on Political Venality, Pomposity and Associated Stupidity.

Saturday, February 05, 2005

"Social Security Just Won't Matter"

If the prognosticaters who concentrate on the peak oil issue have it right, the status of the US Social Security Trust Fund won't be "top of mind" in forty years. Instead of fingering our worry beads over the precise benefits and funding options of this well-intentioned government plan, they insist that we should be more concerned about how the hell we're going to put food on our tables and maintain a coherent society which will be under a massive stressor it has not seen since the advent of the industrial age. That is, the lack of oil to keep our totally oil-dependent system rolling along.

And I tend to agree with them.

However, this is the elephant in the parlor that no one wants to talk about. No one. None of the Presidential candidates mentioned it and you certainly aren't going to hear about it from your local Congressperson or Senator. Way too edgy for them.

But just because no one is talking about it, does that mean that no one is thinking about it? I'm not sure. From time to time over the past year or so, I have tried to connect the dots between the Iraq invasion and peak oil. What if, I wondered, this scenario was playing out behind the scenes;

- Researchers in the government know full-well that we have reached the peak oil tipping point and that it's all down hill from here, unless some miraculous new discovery occurs in the next few years.

- With that information in hand, others have developed projections of what would happen to the U. S. and the world economy when the spigot runs dry. It isn't pretty, pointing as it does to essentially a global breakdown of society.

- So, armed with that information, the U. S. decides they need to have a base of operations in the Middle East. They choose the country which is the most obviously "evil" and which will be the easiest to conquer.

-Based on this theory, everything else to do with the Iraq war is just window-dressing.