Just a Note...Jim Kunstler--author of World Made by Hand--to be on Glenn Beck on CNN-HN tonight, 7 & 9 EDT

Oh, groan. Why does he bother going on a show with this idiot.

that's why I brought it to your attention, it should be, erm, interesting.

Jim Kunstler--author of World Made by Hand--to be on Glenn Beck on CNN-HN tonight, 7 & 9 EDT

Now how the heck did that come about? :)

$2 for every viewer he gets to read his book.

Glenn Beck or Kunstler?

"Oh, groan. Why does he bother going on a show with this idiot."

Are you referring to Jim or Glenn? :-)


Glenn, of course. I guess I assumed that it would have been obvious.

Regarding Kunstler, some people like him, some hate him. He can be provocative, that's for sure.

"He can be provocative, that's for sure."

you can say that about glenn beck too...

"Are you referring to Jim or Glenn? :-)"

i second that.

I'm trying to stick with it. This guy is like a cheese grater on the brain. Given the little blurb he just gave, this will not go well.

Kunstler is to the deniers of petroleum depletion what Ida Tarbell was to John D. Rockerfeller and Standard Oil Company. Journalists, and writers in general, serve the very important function of informing the masses. I appreciate Kunstler and thank him for his efforts. Given the geophysical constraints to a finite petroleum resource, the ignorance of the masses of the constraints and their control of depletion, and the wide range of nonsense being served up about the increase in cost of petroleum -- how could it be otherwise?

Glenn Beck is a regurgitate. Every word out of his mouth is spewed directly from the book of right wing propaganda. I would be shocked if it was revealed that he was NOT on the payroll of the Republican Party.

Should be interesting.

I actually disagree with the "payroll of the Republican Party" part. He seems to have opinions of his own. He's just an asshat. Not a direct shill, just a huuuuuge asshole.

Does it seem like peak oil went mainstream all at once. Like somebody said it was ok to talk about now. Maybe I just wear my tinfoil hat too much....

Too much is never enough.....considering.


It was the breakthrough $100 and immediate run-up to $125.

moabite, i find it interesting that your upset by one person/show on CNN which is conservative. So are you suggesting that life is well when a network just provides liberal coverage? You have to go no further than the primaries to see how little press McCain gets on CNN.

If Beck were as conservative as you suggest he would not be having this type of coverage/interview.

There are conservatives and there are dipshits. Beck is the latter.

I totally agree. Glenn Beck is by far the most idiotic (and annoying) of the right wing media folks.

I agree he is bad but Tucker Carlson is worse.

Has anyone read Glen's Book, an Inconvenient Book? I haven't read the entire thing, but I did take a look at someone elses copy. He has a chapter on peak oil in the book, and basically comes right out and says we're screwed. Here, check out someone's glowing review of his book.


" A critical component of any worthwhile education!
American Exceptionalist, a highly intelligent, avid reader, 12/27/2007

....With the exception of so-called 'peak oil,' Glenn Beck is right on and humorously so, in a charming way that makes you laugh so deeply, and at the same time, exult in the intellectual fortitude and paramount logic that Glenn Beck offers for a pittance...."

He has had Byron King on this and last week.

Personally I think Beck is underserving of some of those comments upthread.
I hope they talk energy and not Obama.

I guess I don't know what to make of the review, other than to say that I still wouldn't want to buy the book as it would put money in Beck's pocket. I might glance at that once chapter while standing in the bookstore however, but it is unlikely that he has any sort of profound insights that the folks here haven't already considered.

speaking of Kunstler, did anyone see that wal-mart had a pretty good quarter...

I thought Jim was good...Beck gave him a chance. Very reasonable.

those complex systems jim speaks off he has very little credentials at all to speak on the issue. his terrible prediction record on those complex systems isn't that good at all.

he said that when he covering the oil crisis in the 70's that it would be a huge problem and yet here we are 28 years later...

his terrible prediction record

John15 Right on schedule. Why don't you just link to the last 100 posts you did stating the exact same thing.

I thought jim did an ok job considering who he had interviewing him, And the fact that he had to be cut off for an important interview with william shatner. I turned it off. Did Captn Kirk give advice on how to book good airline prices in the future?

Jim did make the point a couple of times how all the problems were interwoven and accentuated, exacerbated, multiply each other.

He said how Ethanol within the last year and a half went from solution to big problem.

I wish some one would simply say to the people that "From Peak onward there will be LESS AND LESS Oil for sale FOR EVER AND EVER.


Crashing back into reality in 5,4,3,...

"Why don't you just link to the last 100 posts you did stating the exact same thing."

I repeat it because there is a huge double standard. Yerginites are mocked for their bad predictions yet Kunstler is not, he's in fact a TOD hero when his record on predictions is spotty at best. he doesn't have a whole lot of credentials in the peak oil field. he's not a geologist, a finance guy or a stock market analyst.

he predicted disaster because of the Y2K bug and that never happened. he used the same arguments that he uses for peak oil.

his record of predicting the "discontinuities" of complex systems is not good.

*yawn* the tired argument about the Y2K bug...had the sirens not screamed their Cassandra cry, the resources would not have been allocated to fix the problem. It was fixed with minimal damage because of folks like Jim.

talk to Homer-Dixon, talk to a lot of the other complexity theorists, they say quite a few of the same things, with or without the allusion to peak oil and its effects.

I'd rather do the right thing and save people some suffering, thanks. Call me a nut-job, I really don't care...in fact, it rather motivates me.

(and I'm one of the folks who knows oil will go back down when demand gets destroyed, whenever that is.)

"*yawn* the tired argument about the Y2K bug"

it's not tired, it's his record. live with it. if yergin's record is fair game so is kunstler's. kunstler's Y2k statement is very similar to his peak oil writings. how can we trust his judgement on how peak oil will effect the world if he was so wrong about computers?

as peak oil hits oil prices will rise and we'll just deal with it. that's how capitalism works. it's complex AND yet it's very resilient. the way we use oil is not fixed.

It was fixed with minimal damage because of folks like Jim.

His Y2k statement is maybe 7 or 8 months before y2k happened...what's makes you think that we can't put our heads together and make peak oil a y2k?

If you think that folks in the IT field were unaware of the Y2K until Jim told them about it, I have a bridge I would like to sell you. In fact Y2K was my father's last project before he retired from IT. Some of the programs he was rewriting were ones that he wrote himself in the 70s and 80s. He knew then, that if those systems were still in place, they would need to be fixed. Long before Kunstler ever thought about it, I'm sure. I am also sure that many other IT folks were aware of the problem long before Jim was.

You can *yawn* all you want, but the fact is Kunstler is just as bad at predictions as Yergin.

When I educate my family and friends about Peak Oil, I steer them towards presentations by Matt Simmons, not Kuntsler.


Our lifestyle is continually changing and because of high oil prices it ALREADY HAS started changing, it's not about to change. we're beyond about to change.

In fact, it wasn't cut off for an interview with William Shatner, it was cut off for a promo of an interview with Shatner.
Anyway, I was distracted and let the TV run, and later on Shatner said:

I buy that the world is falling apart.
In every way.
The Main Cause of it is overpopulation.
Not the main, the Cause of the world's destruction is there are too many people.

My opinion of William Shatner just shot through the roof.

very little credentials at all to speak on the issue.

The same can be said of you and your posts here. You have no credibility.

You talk of 'capitalism' - yet all of your examples are not of a capitalist system. In fact - you have never been able to produce examples of the pure capitalist system you keep citing.

Dictionary: capitalism "An economic system in which the means of production and distribution are privately or corporately owned and development is proportionate to the accumulation and reinvestment of profits gained in a free market."

Dictionary: free market "Business governed by the laws of supply and demand, not restrained by government interference, regulation or subsidy."

But hey, go ahead. Produce one of these 'capitalism' systems with a free market.

I thought it was on OK interview as Beck is just wondering what to make of peak oil.. Jim was trying to say there are going to be ramifications that are not going to be very pretty folks.. I don't think they gave him enough time though..

Well that was interesting.
It seems the "entertainment value" of Peak Oil has its limits, even if it was basically a book plug.
My wife thinks Kunstler looked rather uncomfortable.
And I can well imagine.
Going on a show a week after you called the host an idiot for starters.

My take was the opposite, Kunstler was quite eloquent and had thoughtful, reasoned responses.
Beck treated him deferentially, almost as if he conceded James intellectual superiority but its clear he was sidestepping any serious discussion or really doesn't grasp the issue fully.

All in all good job Jim!

"My wife thinks Kunstler looked rather uncomfortable."

he always looks kinda cranky.

I'd agree with her. Kunstler just doesn't do well with a sound-bite interview, no where near enough time. As it was it would take a faithful Oildrum follower to understand what he was driving at as well as having some knowledge of him apriori.

I tried to get a few folks at work who are 404 about peak oil to tune in tonight to get their response, we'll know tomorrow.

You are a smart man, agreeing with my wife!

Kunstler is a dystopian fiction writer. To hold a fiction writer accountable for his predictions is bazaar to say the least. His latest book is more pure fiction.

It is the role of fiction writers to entertain. Plausible forecasts that scare the pants off the reader are part of the plot. Kunstler is making the rounds promoting his book. Book contracts often require the writer to make appearances to promote the book after publishing. He's probably appearing on shows arranged by the publisher.

Kunstler's saving grace is his ability as a word smith and skill at turning a clever phrase that makes people want to read his stuff. His dim view of American life and America's future has a ring of truth that transcends his obviously poor record at seeing the details ahead of time.

"World Made By Hand" is Kunstler's first work of fiction. "The Long Emergency" is most definitely NOT fiction. I do feel that he seems to get a certain amount of pleasure criticizing suburbia and predicting it's eventual fall from grace. I do think he is right about much that he writes but I'm not sure about the time frames involved. He may not and indeed we may not live to see all that he predicts come to pass.
I don't know how suburbia could have been prevented without strong government intervention like prohibiting low density housing on the outer reaches of cities and mandating higher density housing along corridors provided with mass transit. Such things are easy to do in a society where the government has much power but not so easy to do in a "democracy" or a "free society". I use those terms loosely because it is doubtful that they accurately describe the U.S. today. Still it would have behooved the U.S. to encourage higher density housing and mass transit than allowing the suburbs to grow to the extent they have. They are a very wasteful method of land use and may be abandoned en masse if the fuel shortages Kunstler predicts materialize.

Message to John15 (not sure if your nick is a biblical reference or not)
Here is a biblical reference for your comments: Hebrews 13:8

As far as JK is concerned, if he had started ASPO or any of the other serious PO analysis entities then your criticism of him would be appropriate and worthy of deeper rebuttal. He does not claim "expert" status like Yergin does. He is very good at stimulating discussion and offers a vivid view of grim possibilities. His message is one of preparing for the worst and hope for the best, although he thinks the worst is the most likely outcome. We have only known an energy rich capitalism so putting blind faith in that might be the biggest mis-allocation of emotion in the history of the world. Best wishes for a best case scenario.

I tuned into the interview between Beck and Kunstler. Why do almost all TV show hosts feel compelled to interrupt the person they've asked to be on the show. What benefit is there to the viewer if every thought the guest tries to complete is cut off and the subject of what they were saying negated by a complete change in the direction of the interview? How did interviews on TV de-evolve to this inane level and become the accepted norm?

Beck spent more time in the interview pontificating as he stared up at the ceiling, than Kunstler ever got to say. Kunstler never finished one thought, so it was a waste of time. Really shouldn't have even bothered going on.

Beck spends most of his show arrogantly spewing opinion as if it is obvious fact, while not understanding why everyone else doesn't see things precisely as he does. Someone needs to get a cane and pull him off the set permanently.

How did interviews on TV de-evolve to this inane level and become the accepted norm?

I watched the interview also. You're right. Beck interrupts. So does O'Reilly. So do many of the right wing pontificates. And left wingers like Colbert too. It's a style that works. Make it seem as if you are giving the guest a chance when in fact you're not.

The attention span given to JK was too short for the masses to pick up on anything meaningful. As one person upthread mentioned, his wife noted JK's looks. Unshaven and scraggly. The message never got through. Down the slippery slope of what, huh? Did you notice his beard, his beady eyes? This is what makes TV so educational. All the fun distractions.

And left wingers like Colbert too.

Colbert is 'acting' as a 'right winger'.

Listen to some of the people on Air America. If they 'like'(or agree) the interviewee - the interviewer won't interrupt. If they don't - then they do. Last time I cared to listen to AA, they were the same kind of positive affermation circle jerk that goes on in most self-selected groups.

d JK's looks. Unshaven and scraggly.

Once ya dress up to wrestle a grizzly bear, about the only other time ya need to dress up is for the lan party.

(or ya know - people who's minds are open don't give a gosh darn about the looks of the person)

I'm surprised that JHK appeared on Glenn Beck and that Beck even asked him to. Just a couple of weeks ago Kuntsler said (on his website) of Beck that "he didn't know what the f*ck he was talking about" when referring to comments Beck had made about the rising cost of oil. Beck's viewership has dropped off considerably from what it was when he was first given the show. It wouldn't surprise me if CNN does not renew his contract when it's up.

"His Y2k statement is maybe 7 or 8 months before y2k happened...what's makes you think that we can't put our heads together and make peak oil a y2k?"

Do you really think Peak Oil will be as easy to solve as Y2K? If we put our heads together we might be able to make a strategic retreat, and save some of the knowledge and technology we have. We might also save a few more humans and other, more innocent species than if we do nothing, or next to nothing, which is the course we are on now. Time to cease shooting at the messenger, John15, and begin concentrating on the tasks at hand.