Today's News Linkage (and some commentary)...

Here's a good piece by an opinion columnist Charley Reese (hat tip to Matt Savinar...there's some other good ones over there too like this one and this one).

The money quotes of the Reese article:

"The peak production of oil and its inevitable decline is now within sight. The United States has only two choices. It can begin now to deal with the shortage and consequent high prices, or it can do nothing and suffer the dire consequences of what some shortsighted person in the future is sure to label "the oil crisis." Only a lack of preparation will make it a crisis.

Better start taking your politics seriously, folks. If we keep sending the same kind of opportunists, nitwits, special pleaders and party hacks we have up there now, then bad times are surely coming. You can't expect a bunch of shade-tree mechanics to service a space shuttle, and you can't expect a bunch of knuckleheaded office-seekers to solve today's complex problems."

Hey, now here's an idea:

"Any non-American is bound to think that there is a much easier way. A tax of $1 per gallon, made in five annual steps and announced in advance, would eliminate the US budget deficit, support the dollar and help to curb oil consumption in a predictable way that allows the motor industry to market new ranges of vehicles using less fuel and maintains consumer confidence. It would also, in future, give the Federal government a weapon to stop future oil spikes hurting the US economy. Sadly, we know that US oil is influential and this will not happen."

sigh, I fear you're correct...though a tax phased in three years ago might have helped us curb consumption and solved our deficit problem, it's a little late now to do much about it.

This piece of wisdom (and a few others) can be found here at the Times Online (UK).

Kurt Cobb over at Resource Insights has put together a nice "to-do" list for Peak Oil. (hat tip to sustainablog for bring this to my attention).

I have found that many folks' eyes cross when you start talking about the possibility of the Peak Oil phenomenon. Right after you state that you're not trying to indoctrinate them into a cult and instead have an empirical case to make, you may want to try some of the steps laid out here. Probably the most important point: if people don't give you the idea that they want to talk about this, leave them alone, and don't badger them or tell them WHAT to think. You're not going to do any good that way.

Some search terms that I would suggest for those just getting to the peak oil phenomenon, (after you've read one of the primers available over in the sidebar), include Hubbert's peak, tragedy of the commons, governance of the commons, free rider problem, Olduvai, and the Jevons paradox.

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Just wanted to mention that I've been having some luck lately. Two friends recently told me they've started to get concerned about this--one who reads my blog, and the other who caught the Kunstler article. Also, I think I got hardass intersted too, and I hope she looks into it because she's an economist, and maybe she'll have special insight.