Putting a New Face on Selling Peak Oil: Kris Can

I think it might be safe to say that the peak oil movement has long had a mostly older male and perhaps somewhat, erm, geeky set of spokespeople - from James Howard Kunstler to Richard Heinberg to Matthew Simmons--in that they've all tried to convince people through logic, facts & figures and long speeches at conferences that we should be worried about PO. And even our own staff here at the Oil Drum--aside from Gail and Leanan--are middle age to older men. (Though it should be noted that we are making some changes soon to add a little more diversity and different types of media to TOD...but more on that later!)

So how else can we generate Peak Oil awareness? Kriscan - a young woman with a video blog that's making her PO pitch using all sorts of innovative marketing techniques - asking people on the street, making a song about peak oil, and yes even resorting to the types of suggestive body language more typical of an MTV music video (think Christina Aguilera) than college professor lecture.

Here's her recent attempt at asking random people on the street if they even know what Peak Oil is:

And a public service announcement that you will not be seeing on network Television:

Now watch it again and try to concentrate on the words. Believe me, it starts to sink in after the fifth or sixth viewing. JH Kunstler has even commented about her and she has a video response to him.

What innovative ideas have you seen out there to educate people about peak oil in your area?

Well, that got my attention.

Seems like a good strategy to me! At least it's proven. Media and low-down advertising uses it all the time. Though, I would not know how much seriousness it adds/detracts: the fact that she is completely involved and willing to do this type of advertising, or that it appeals to the lowest human senses. Though its great that people are taking action!

Some days ago I saw a guy at the university with his car covered with "peak oils" and a big fixture on the back reading: "Peak Oil!" That's as much as I've seen. But we're getting there...

I agree that more populistic means are required than this website does. But for sod's sake don't try to change TOD in any way - it serves a specific role and is about as great as is likely to get. The proportion of low-quality contributions is remarkably low (and honestly I am trying to get it even lower ;~).

Perhaps it would make sense to have some other more populist site which can link to TOD. Meanwhile there is the 80 minute video "A Crude Awakening" which is very competent if rather emotionic in presentation (as characterises most videos) and presents the grim problem without having space to also give any positive-constructive follow-up.

"What innovative ideas have you seen out their to educate people about peak oil in your area?"

Editorial note for the above... their/there


But seriously guys and gals, what kind of audience are you trying to attract here? And if you turn Peak Oil into a fad, how long will it last? What's the life expectancy of a fad these days? Six months or less?

OK, maybe I'm being too harsh. But what about trying to get a Peak Oil guru on Saturday Night Live or somesuch? It would probably be worth a bit more mileage than soft porn.

One last point, if you do the marketing, it will look like, well, marketing. At this point, it looks like you're selling something as opposed to presenting an intellectually honest concern.

OK -- the one with the cat is my favorite. My wife, especially, loved it.

Just makes you want to go out on the street and randomly ask people what they know about Peak Oil.


Hi Kris,

I am serious when I suggest you and Oily Cassandra put something together. You could do the entire thing via e-mail/internet if you are not near each other.

You could take it any direction: serious, like Oily, sexy, like both have done, or all academic-like. Any of the above would work. Maybe Luis would be interested given his video work previously?


I couldn't agree more. Who could take these types of videos seriously? I mean sure they appeal to the basic lust section of the brain, but how much sinks in? Who has the time to watch these 6 or 7 times to get a message? I suspect that they are being watched that often for other reasons.

As someone that shares this web-site with her sons, one of whom is 13 I am very, very disappointed. To say that younger people do not know, or care is kind of bigoted in itself. My sons are very informed and tend to inform their friends. Imagine my surprise when I saw this video posted. It's not something I want my 13 year old seeing. I do not want my sons to think that women have to resort to this kind of tactic to get their point across. When I showed it to my older sons, and then asked them what the video message was, their answer was.."Ummm, sex?" So younger males aren't picking up any message other than she is selling sex. Some woman and I am one of them, prefer intelligent discussions and informative adds that speak to all sexes. I find this kind of add to be simplistic and cultish. Here today/gone tomorrow (except of course for those males that need to be stimulated in this way.)

So maybe she could downplay the sex kitten act and get serious? Anyone can do a peek tease for reaction, give us something with some meat and meaning. Something most of us will want to share with family and friends.

Boys club or not, woman play a big roll in this world, time to face that. These kind of videos just cause us to laugh and think.."Wow Bimbo." then we search for someone that has something meaning full to contribute. If she is smart she will stick to getting her message across with her cloth's on..that is if she can.

I haven't viewed her other videos, but if the one posted is any indication of the rest, why would I waste my time?

Oh, and thanks guys, now I have to screen this site before I let my 13 year old on it to read, hats off to you all. I mean way to reach the younger people. Your setting a fine example for young men everywhere.(not)

I think we will switch to tree hugger for our meaningful information and lack of need for adult screening. this used to be a great site for information, and insight now it's just the good old boys pandering sex videos.

I couldn't agree more. Who could take these types of videos seriously? I mean sure they appeal to the basic lust section of the brain, but how much sinks in?

If you watch them all, you'll find that two or three appeal to the lust part, but that the other six or seven, and good parts of the other two or three, appeal to the humour and common sense parts.

I haven't viewed her other videos, but if the one posted is any indication of the rest, why would I waste my time?

"I read the blurb, what else do I need to know about this book? I don't need to read any of it to judge it!"

It's that sort of reasoning that means many people don't believe in peak fossil fuels, global warming, that smoking can give you lung cancer, and so on.

Both the boys here and the girls need to get past the sexy bits and look at the humorous and intelligent bits - which are the majority of what she's put up.

Also, if you think that Kris Can's stuff is "sex videos" then you have some shocks waiting for you online, indeed even on daytime television.

"I read the blurb, what else do I need to know about this book? I don't need to read any of it to judge it!"

I can't believe you would compare a book to a video. Please. Everyone knows books have to be read in order to be judged. Videos on the other hand speak loud and clear. One viewing is all that is needed. With this one, less than a viewing. No I stand by what I said. this type of video does Nothing to promote awareness. It screams Bimbo, wanting attention. Give me a video with an intelligent woman giving facts and making her case intelligently and you got my attention.

As for the daytime T.V. comment. I don't watch T.V. Except for news. find that most programs are geared for sex and or making parents look stupid.

As for shocks awaiting me online. No, nothing much shocks me. disappoints me. Like the lack of common sense used to post that video on here. Many of us use this site to educate our children on PO.

That video might be considered cute by some, but it falls far short of getting any point across. I am offended that a female in todays day and age would feel that she needs to resort to that kind of behavior in order to get her point across. If we females ever want to be taken seriously, that kind of behavior needs to stop. What did one of you good old boys write? Something about a Harem?

"Both the boys here and the girls need to get past the sexy bits and look at the humorous and intelligent bits - which are the majority of what she's put up."

Isn't the point the message, so if you have to wade through the sex to get to the humorous and intelligent parts how does that work? I'm sorry I looked her up on youtube after reading your post, I am open minded enough to do that. I found most of it to be the same as what was posted. Yes, men will watch because men are visual creatures. Woman on the other hand are not visual creatures, meaning seeing something like that doesn't turn us on, but does the opposite. If she wants to reach more than just men, then she needs a new tactic. Kodos for her trying and all of that, but That type of video will not get it with women.

Now here look at this video. It's long but the young woman on it, is getting her message across in an intelligent and informative way. She is taking action and has been for years. Now this is something that I would watch and pay attention to, as well as share with family and friends. The URL is: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f7i6roVB5MI

I can't not say the same for the videos of Kriscan posted here. I will however take the time to view more of Kriscans work, to be fair. Perhaps the ones posted here were picked by one of the good old boys who needs to learn what harumscarum means. (reckless and irresponsible)Perhaps, whoever posted that video should have posted one of Kriscans more intelligent and humorous videos instead?

I try to be open minded, but when you have a teenage son who is 13, and very interested in PO the kind of video that was posted, well, it's not really a good thing for a site like this, I mean maybe putting the link up and letting people look at it off site might have been more responsible? Or maybe I'm wrong and the good old boys care nothing about the serious issue of PO? Or reaching young people, and the younger you reach them the better off everyone will be.

Anyway, my opinion. As everyone has one. I usually stay silent, but this one bothered me, for obvious reasons.

Hi evilelf,

I'm glad I came back this late - though probably no one else is reading by now.

Thanks for your comments. It's so tempting (apparently) to promote "humans as objects", and it's kind of a subtle point to be made, in the sense that people also naturally want to have fun and laugh. Sometimes the line is fine, and sometimes not.

I like your description of how aware and thoughtful your sons are.

I've had a little bit similar experiences with this site, in that I found myself unfortunately not recommending it for a long time - (or, recommending with caveats) - as the talk turned to "locker room" fairly often. Thankfully, this isn't the case so much any more. Normal in one culture, appalling in another.

I wanted to add just a tiny point to your comment:

"Your setting a fine example for young men everywhere.(not)."

It's not just young men who pick up the message: "This is the only way I count - as someone who can be manipulated with images."

It's about young (and not so young) women, as well. A physically beautiful girl, an attractive young woman...would she be human?

Or... object?

Look at the statistics of child abuse, so-called "acquaintance rape", sexual assault. Then, look a little further - or maybe not so far, to find trafficking for purposes of sexual exploitation. Look a little further, to find routine rape as illegal immigrants attempt entrance to the US. Look anywhere, and you'll see violence that underlies the "image".

Who am I?

Who are we?

I like how only one of the Americans had any clue while all three Europeans knew what PO. Here is Kriscan spoofing "Hot for Words".

Well, finally Leanan has presented herself in a form other than just print. Now we all know your true identity, Leanan!

Cheers, Dom

Europeans are more aware of environmental issues in general, including peak oil. There are at least three elements to this:

(1) We didn't have the same degree of suburban development and middle-class flight to the suburbs. In most European countries, the decision-makers (business, political, and media) still live and work in old city centres where the environmental impact of private cars was most visible. The needs of public transport frequently clashed with the needs of drivers, and often the public transport won.

(2) Europe didn't have an "oil rush" like in Texas or Oklahoma. We've always been aware that it's a foreign import, with the small and relatively recent exception of North Sea oil.

(3) Our state-run television channels, free from the pressures of advertisers, tend to discuss environmental issues more than on US tv. Environmental actions are portrayed as normal behaviour and not just the preserve of radical eco-hippies.


"a mostly older male and perhaps somewhat, erm, geeky set of spokespeople"
Well I'm only 28, but my friends say I was born 40. Definitely geeky too! (and male)

edit 2

If young people aren't interested in Peak Oil, it's because we have bigger things to worry about. Finding a job, a career, a partner, settling down, paying off the mortgage on a tiny apartment or townhouse, getting the kids into a good school, paying the bills. Until all that is sorted, we can't even consider doing the whole survivalist thing with a small farm etc. Peak Oil to us means just buying the smallest car possible or taking public transport instead. High fuel taxes and high parking costs (in Europe) already push us in the right direction.

Drewster, congratulations for being one of the young people who are already up to speed and thinking about solutions! People like you are continuing inspiration for me--I'm in my 40s and I'm counting on your gen to step up!

As for this:

Finding a job, a career, a partner, settling down, paying off the mortgage on a tiny apartment or townhouse, getting the kids into a good school, paying the bills. Until all that is sorted, we can't even consider doing the whole survivalist thing with a small farm etc.

That is the normal thing to do, but when it comes to peak oil, it might be a bit backwards. By orienting your choices of career, mate, and location toward what a post-peak scenario now, you will save yourself a lot of grief and be ahead of the game at the same time.

If you've tried to explain Peak Oil stuff to people you must have noticed that it ain't always easy. First of all it's a scary message. Secondly it asks listeners to take some really nasty medicine.

We need a spoonful of sugar to help it all go down, and you gotta admit that Kris Can.

KrisCan is not the only one to come up with this idea, check out this ;)



Yup. Oily Cassandra was first, and more informative, but I like KrisCan, too.

If I could think of a way to blame my fat, lard arse on PO and convince people this will happen to them, too, if they don't start conserving, localizing, etc., we could scare the PO into them! Anywho...

Perhaps we could get them to do a collaboration... There's a nice musical collaboration on YouTube two guys did living on different continents.

They'd get my vote.


oilyCassandra and KrisCan collaborating, that has got to turn some heads for sure.

They'd get my vote to, I'm not sure what were voting for though

I thought they might be the same person. Does either one of them have an ID here at TOD? It would be interesting to ask them some questions.



I don't think Oily Cassandra has an ID here...

Oh ya...right. Could of checked users on TOD. Didn't think she'd use her same name. So Kriscan, congrats on getting some PO message out there. Do you have some journalism experience? You seem pretty natural with your interviews. What's next in marketing PO to the populace?

My favorite one is Kriscan out on the frozen lake talking to a guy about how to conserve energy at home ("so, I have to vacuum my refrigerator?"). Then the ice on the lake begins to crack. Little dance on the ice...cute...and then Kris interviews a passing bicyclist on the snow (chance meeting...me thinks not). Another dance ensues. I actually appreciate that and the city-folk interviews more because Kris' personality comes out which is quite different than you might think looking at the lusty oil messages. I like her much better as a "beat on the street" reporter of PO.

I will volunteer to direct:-)

SoD you beat me to it. Just saw that video a week ago on video sift.

Whatever gets people's attention. Remember those "I'd rather wear nothing than wear fur" ads?

I notice that Oily Cassandra has 111,000 views compared to Luis' Olduvai 2008 pt1 with 3,500 views.


I don't understand, what's the correlation...?

Are you serious? Olduvai is deadly serious educational - but is not reaching the wider audience hoped for. The simple sexy message here is getting much wider exposure.

At some point we need to dumb down this message a lot - UK red tops have tits on p3 and footie on the back - and not much in between.

I know Euan, just being sarcastic, It's a bit disturbing that we've come to a time where we can't discuss stuff like this and it doesn't hold peoples attention. It's especially frustrating in America, where everything is a joke. I attribute it to the lose of community and social isolation brought about by technology and changes in culture. Also We have a failed education system which is more about memorizing things for 2 weeks, than about learning anything.

Agreed, it's a brilliant strategy--I sent her my accolades!

But it's mainly directed at men, who are already altogether too dominant in peak oil awareness. A subject for a future post I've been considering: how to interest more women in contending with peak oil!


ChrisN - Iron Man

Good luck with this idea. I was reading the comments with the YouTube video link provided above. Not encouraging and along the lines of what I expected.

PO IS analytic and requires a bit of classroom time to explain. A video may help, I am not knocking it, but it does not turn on the analytic part of the brain which needs to be turned on for this to be understood.

Watching TV and reading local rags I am starting to get the feeling that PO will slowly seep into the brains. Indirectly. There is still resistance to use that word often. But one day the majority will have the "BINGO" moment but it will be too late.

Most of the people that I have tried to explain PO to at least 3-4 years ago gave the same standard answer, "Yehh, but they will come up with something to take care of the problem IF it is true. They always do. They are always working on something"

It is a tough nut to crack. :-)

At least the girls with some brains at that age have understood it and want to get the message out. I bet their IQs are high and they are enviro-freaks or something and willing to make a change. Lots of guys are just fixated on career and possessions to get status to get some dumb babe in bed so they reject PO. The smart gals might understand PO then my peddly bike will be sexier to tehm and I can get laid easier(I'm married and 43 but a younger guy like Matt Savinar could see it this way).

More power to her and best of luck. I don't think it gets attention for peak oil so much as it gets her a shot at 15 minutes of fame within a subculture and possibly some exposure on TV if the winds are blowing just right. I will wait to see where it leads before agreeing that it will raise the awareness level. Nonetheless, kudos to her. I need to go duplicate some Youtube videos now ;)

when does the gay version come out? (as it were)

About two minutes after you upload it:)

If you are a man ...
with normal (heterosexual) impulses, ...
you can quickly see with video #3 (Kriscan posing behind the oil cans) how one part of your brain (the sex chasing part) quickly over takes and muffles out the neo-cortical rational part.

The question is whether the subliminal Peak Oil message ever gets through?

Will non-aware males learn to mutter the words "Peak Oil" simply by watching Kris Can's dance over and over again? Will they be motivated to research Peak Oil? Or will they be merely mesmerized by her seductively exposed navel?

On the one hand we can all laugh at the concept of the Neanderthal male brain. On the other hand, it's all too real and sad how the primitive part overpowers the rational lumps that sparsely dot the outer periphery of our gray organism.

Would you buy a used oil can from "that woman"?

If you look at her website, you'll see that the one they've posted here is the "sexiest" one. As in an advertisement, first they grab your attention with something bright and shiny, next they give you the information, and follow it up with some humour to leave you feeling receptive to more information later.

The editors chose to link mostly to the sauciest bits.

So this isn't about what Kris Can chooses to focus on, but what the editors of TOD and its readers choose to focus on. As always, a fuller reading gives a deeper understanding.

Or you could be like that bigot Kunstler, saying, "nice rack" and asking her out on a date, which is pretty lame.

Would you please provide some links or quotes to support the "bigot" lable?
I have read Kunstler extensively and have not noticed anything like that. Biased, impatient opinionated and imperfect for sure, perhaps chauvenist and full of other human and gender weaknesses but I would not apply unthinking intolerance to him.

On September 12th, 2001, in response to the September 11 attacks - and at the stage when nobody knew who was responsible for the attacks, he wrote that the US should utterly destroy Kabul, Baghdad, Damascus and Tripoli; the people were to be warned to leave before their cities got destroyed (just as the Germans warned the people of Leningrad and Stalingrad). The people of Gaza were to be deported en masse and at gunpoint to Egypt, and those of the West Bank to Jordan.

The deliberate destruction of entire cities and the permanent deportation of millions of people at gunpoint is called "genocide" and "ethnic cleansing."

Now, lots of people were angry on the 12th of September 2001 after spending the 11th in shock, and lots of people said things they didn't really mean. But Kunstler has never retracted, qualified, or revisited his comments of that day. They're also in accord with his other expressed ideas and attitudes, which are violently bigoted.

Then you can read World Made by Hand, in which the women exist only to cook, bathe wounds and have sex with middle-aged white men, and have no personalities or ideas of their own worth speaking of.

And so in sum we see that Kunstler is violently bigoted.

Or as the other bloke said, you could just listen to his podcasts.

They're also in accord with his other expressed ideas and attitudes, which are violently bigoted.
His podcasts don't contain any of this so perhaps you could cite some more violent bigotry.
The sept 12,2001 statements are reprehensible and something I would have expected to see on the Fox network. I don't know if JHK is an actively religeous person but that statement and some others in later blogs certainly reflect the zionist mentality. Citing 3000 year old oral tribal tradition as legal justification for displacing the more current residents of Palestine is certainly untenable. It is also unacceptable to relate the terror tactics of one side without also including the corresponding terror tactics of the other. Aside from any other political reasons for the attack on Iraq, the main benficiary, at least in the short term, is Israel. Sadam was the only leader in the region crazy enough to be a physical threat to Isreal and so his destruction was of direct benefit. This is a debate that should be carried on in a different forum. Returning to Kunstler, is there anything in the public record calling him on these statements? The one obvious flaw that I have seen with him is his tendancy to ignore or gloss over his mistakes, especially his mis-predictions. As for his latest novel I will certainly read it once it becomes available in our library system. I have yet to find a reviewer who had a problem with his treatment of women but his comments concerning Kris were certainly chauvenistic. I will look for that aspect when I am reading it.

Hi jografy,

re: "I have yet to find a reviewer who had a problem with his treatment of women..."

FYI: Elaine Supkis wrote a review published at www.energybulletin.net.

Their server is down, or I'd find the link for you.

Astyk always writes well and with insight. From her piece and many of the comments afterwards it is obvious that Kunstler's chauvenism coloured (or mono-chromed) his female characters. I do intend to read the thing as soon as our library system has it but that may not be for a year or two and we may all be busy with other things by then. And our interloan system bringing books to our small town library may no longer function. Most novels are read from the point of view of their entertainment value. "Serious" work is of course supposed to involve us in a deeper layer of intelectual activity while still being a good read. My favorite in this regarde is "A Passage to India" One older one that might be easily dropped into a post peak oil world is A Handmaid's Tale. It has been too long since I have read it but my memory is that the only completly constructed character was the heroine. My appologies to Atwood if I am wrong but even this being so did not prevent the author drawing a good picture of her world and making a good read. I won't dare compare Kunstler's writing ability with Atwood. Anything I read about post peak oil is always looked at with the question: "What will we have to do to survive?" The "we" radiates out from me personally to expanding layers of family and community. I will be reading World Made By Hand from the perspective of this question and what help it may have in answering it. But I certainly won't be thinking this is a close version of the future. I already have a rather gloomy view of the next twenty years and we may have to make the decision of Fight or Flight more than once. Thanks for the links.

I already have a rather gloomy view of the next twenty years and we may have to make the decision of Fight or Flight more than once.

Actually, this common myth of animal behaviour as being only "fight or flight" only gives us half the options.

There are also posture and submit. This is well described here. Basically, "posture" is "show me your war face!" and battle cries, plumes on helmets, firing in the air, "woohoo!" and all that. "Submit" is "I'm small and harmless no need to bother knocking me off."

Most physical confrontations begin as two guys or groups posturing. After a bit one side will either fight or else back down and submit. An actual fight is less common. We have in Australia 140,000 or so assaults of all kinds each year (remembering that "assault" is everything from raising your hand to threaten to cutting off a toe with a bolt cutter, mob-style), but in the daily interactions of 21 million people we can be certain there are many more instances of posturing, intimidating the other person. And those 140,000 assaults result in only 300 deaths, so that of all assaults, only one in 467 turns deadly.

So that your choices are not limited to fight or flight, since most people will stop far short of actual fighting. They don't want to be hurt by or hurt others any more than you do.

"since most people will stop far short of actual fighting. They don't want to be hurt by or hurt others any more than you do."
There will be lots of thugs and other dangerous characters who wont qualify as "most people". Submission is generally chosen when flight or fight does not seem to be an option and that will be what most people do. This was the strategy of many Jews in Germany in the 1930s. The results were not good. The human species is on of the few that is willing to fight to the death and kill others to attain objectives. You are correct that in general the vast majority play the game of submission and intimidation and many tribes are reputed to have made this almost ritualistic warfare. However there are many recorded incidents of one tribe totally obliterating another. Events in Rawanda are a recent horrible example. However the Spanish generally adopted submission once Franco gained power and just waited him out. I think though future conditions will make everyone more desperate and willing to take more drastic action.

You can judge for yourself at:


Nothing new there. Bigotry is a different level than male chauvenism or the other JHK sins. Actually I detect a sadness and resignation in Kunstler's performances, as opposed to his written work. His general message is hard to accept however the general response seems to be personal attacks on him and not his message. From the show they did in response to Kriscan's phone call the underlying response was that awareness may not matter and she may be worrying about the wrong thing. I happen to disagree in that awareness will help mitigate the impact of what is now becoming a very psycologically stressfull period. We take comfort in naming things like diseases (SARS, West Nile virus, Norwak virus). Even though it doesn't help dealing with the physical consequences it reduces fear. In any event I see no bigotry in Kunstler. I get the feeling anyone who is unarmed would be welcome at his door in a humane and sympathetic way, even NASCAR fans. My view is that he would engage in an intellectual relationship whether the caller was Kriscan, Megan Quinn or a grizzled old guy like me.

Unfortunately, Kunstler's latest missive pretty much makes the case for him being something less benign than a mere chauvinist, male or American or otherwise.

Basically, he argues that since a few criminals, with their basic HQ in Afghanistan, killed thousands of Americans, attacking their bases there only resulted in the U.S. occupying a poor land with one glaring defect - the Afghanis weren't Arabs, unlike the criminals that hijacked and crashed the planes.

So what the U.S. needed to do was show the Arab world that any attacks from Arab terrorists meant that America would basically show the world that the only way to win a war against terrorism is to attack a country with essentially zero association with said terrorists, because invading an Arab country would then show the Arab world that terrorism just doesn't pay. Or something.

It is actually pretty revolting in any number of ways, a fact that Kunstler at least acknowledges up front.

And it is typical Kunstler in another way - utterly and completely American-centric. Spain suffers a major attack from terrorists, and what happens when the Spanish government initially lies about it? Spanish voters replace a fraudulent group of leaders in a democratic election. Which shows what wimps the Spanish were, since they could have gone and bombed Morocco to show the Arab world how tough Spain was.

But unlike in the Spanish example, Kunstler applauds the lying and torturing thugs in the White House, because really, what can you do with the Arabs but bomb them into the submission they so richly deserve? Especially Arabs that have nothing, zilch, zero, to do with that terrorist organization. Bad guys kill the innocent, because the bad guys are evil doers. Good guys go out and teach a lesson by killing the innocent, because they are the good guys.

Makes you wonder what Kunstler really thinks about what should be done to some of the other groups he has railed against.

I find Kunstler's raw hatred of so much in American life hard to resist. What I find much easier to resist is how ugly hatred turns when it is allowed free reign.

Sadly, Kunstler just doesn't understand that hatred of American suburban life is not the same as arguing for children to be burned alive in their family's house because America needs to prove how tough it is. And yet, there he is, this Monday, doing just that.

Sadly you are correct. This last blog seems to simply reinforce his piece of Sept 12, 2001. He is basically parroting the position of the neocons and a commentator on his blog today accused him of being a neocon. The attack in Iraq was in part to take out the last country that posed a physical threat to Israel. Iran is the next target, not because they pose an immediate threat but that the climate in the USA is open to action now but might not be in the future when and if there is a real threat. Iran’s crime is that it is the closest thing to a real country in the whole Gulf region in spite of its many internal divisions and problems. It is the only country that might get its act together to be an organized threat. In the light of the centuries of pogroms and the Holocaust and the shameful treatment of Jewish refugees by Canada especially in the 1930s, it is hard to criticise the Zionist project. However Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians and the violent reaction from them is a festering sore that will lead to much more bloodshed and likely the next use of nuclear weapons. Unfortunately, once the USA ‘s economy declines enough that it can no longer properly support its colony of Israel the government there may be come desperate. There is a chance that there will be pre-emptive nuclear strikes and the application of some plan similar to Kunstler’s to solve the Palestinian “problem” once and for all. The recent military punishment of Lebanon serves as a warning. I am glad this information has been drawn to my attention. It speaks to Kunstler’s credibility and motives. At the same time much of his position concerning the un-sustainability of the suburbs and the disastrous distortion of the American way of life is still valid. However he does not appear to be someone we should look to for predicting the future course of events or for any suggestions about solutions.

The elite in America and the Religious fundamentalists are deeply and probably fatally entwined in the Zionist project.
This is operating against the interests of everyone in America except the elites and the Zionists.
The neo-cons have ignored the strategic interests of their country, and the political system in America makes it impossible to stand up to those interests, with Hilary Clinton even threatening a non-hostile country, Iran, with nuclear obliteration.
The promised land will be inherited in plots 6 feet long at some stage.
The only question is when.

This last blog seems to simply reinforce his piece of Sept 12, 2001.

As I said, he's a bigot.

He writes that no Arab nation was responsible for the act, but that the US had to strike at someone, and it had to be an Arab nation. Apart from the need to do some macho posturing, it is not clear why this should be so.

When Japanese Red Brigades terrorists massacred people at Lod Airport, did Israel attack Japan? When Irish terrorists mortared the British Cabinet, did Britain bomb Dublin?

Kunstler writes,

As a strategic matter, it was necessary to make the "statement" that attacks on US territory would provoke a response that Islamic extremists could not fail to understand -- something along the lines of "an eye for an eye...."

Firstly, he deliberately misunderstands the biblical passage, which tells us that punishments must not be more than an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth. That is, the punishment may be less than the crime, or equal to it, but not more. So if a man takes my eye I may not take his life and burn his house down with his family in it. That's too much. I can at most take his eye - but should probably do less than that.

Secondly, "an eye for an eye" refers to punishing the offender, not someone who happens to be in the same family, or the same race.

So Kunstler turns out not only to be a bigot, but an ignorant bigot, too. Which is not surprising, since they do go together.

Unfortunately the Israeli approach now shows no concern for killing innocents even if the missile was aimed at a "terrorist" or destroying the homes and family members of a suicide bomber. Cluster bombing Lebanon is another. As with the neo-cons there seems to be no moral constraint and that is what Kunstler demonstrates as well. I am very disappointed to discover all this and no matter how interesting and even useful the Long emergency etc might be, I will no longer be recomending Kunstler to anyone. There are many other excellent writers on the subject.

A person can speak nonsense in one area, and still speak good sense in another. They can be vile people and still write some truth.

To me, the importance of Kunstler is not that all his critiques are correct, but that he dares to criticise these things at all. The suburban life is held up as the most best of lives, and few dare question that. I don't agree with his extreme condemnation of it, but it's worth questioning.

At the same time I bear in mind his violent bigotry, so that I can be critical myself.

It's important to have a critical eye and an open mind. Kunstler has only a critical eye, his mind is closed - but he can still help us have a critical eye, including one on him.

Hi Kiashu! Thanks!

Here are all shows in episode order:

episode 1: Interviews: http://www.kriscan.com/archives/30
episode 2: What is peak oil: http://www.kriscan.com/archives/33
episode 3: Interviews: http://www.kriscan.com/archives/50
episode 4: The Peak Oil Song: http://www.kriscan.com/archives/41
episode 5: Interviews: http://www.kriscan.com/archives/46
episode 6: Kriscan does HotForWords: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qj5qgfQj-co

Please send or post ideas!

Episode 5 Interview - only the European knew all about Peak Oil and was amazed by the huge vehicles that Americans drive. So now that the average American is facing Peak Oil at that gas stations, what do our politicians do? They blame traders, "evil" oil companies, OPEC, etc. because they all assume the "American way of life is non-negotiable" and gas prices will return to "normal" levels. No, America is headed right off the cliff. At this stage of Peak Oil, nearly everyone in the US is either oblivious or in the denial stage.

BTW - it snows in Florida???

oops.. - also:

episode 0 ( pilot ): Interviews: http://www.kriscan.com/archives/8
special segment: Kris responds to James: http://www.kriscan.com/archives/52
( teaser: James agreed to the interview )

thanks all of you for your comments and interest! I have always appreciated your work and it is nice to hear from you!

Kris - I watched them all now. I liked most of them - not the PO song. We've been talking a long time here about making videos - but to be honest we are all middle aged geeks and rather obsessed with technical detail (not me I may add - I'm old, grey, don't give shit about detail and I'm not a geek and Rembrandt and Luis are actually younger than you). Getting this message across to a broader public is really important - IMO. Manly because like it or not we are still cursed with democracy and politicians think with:

1. Ballot box
2. Balls
3. Brains (if they have em)...

.. in that order. But that task of educating the public to the point where PO may actually become an issue important for politicians at the ballot box is truly mammoth.

Nate Hagens, another ed here who may be very interested in your stuff is off trying to get himself some proper educational qualifications this weekend having found the ones he bought on the Internet don't count. But I'll make sure he reads this thread.

A couple of ideas for you - put a link to TOD on your site and mention The Oil Drum in your next vid. I'll suggest to management here that we link to your's - but may get my plug pulled for doing so.

I have this image in my mind from a Terry Gilliam film of a guy and a creaky bike and a dessert - running very low on energy (Prof Goose is a bit of a Python fan and film buff and so may be able to come up with an image). This image always reminds me of what life may be like in the future - trying to transport stuff using 1 WP (1 woman power) is excruciating. So I'm thinking Cabriolet, Harley, racing bicycle, old bicycle with panniers - but then my imagination ran dry - how to get he message across of power or lack of it - you end up with death.

Keep a hold of T shirts - we can auction these one day. I will bid for A.

Good luck with your venture - you need staying power!


PS - the link with Gym Kunstler didn't work for me.

I can't decide whether I liked the A or the L best.

Maybe we should run a poll?

I'm still studying them - I don't like to rush to judgement! :-)

w00T! Peak oil exhibitionism!

Next topic up: Crack Spreads!

*** koff *** wheeze ***

That was pretty appalling IMO but I think advertising/ PR is an avenue that needs exploiting.

those ad men convinced everybody to consume now they can undo some of the damage

hope to see something way cool in the near future

the third one was the best as it has a subversive 'edge" that is attractive


Please don't turn this into another horndog site. I come here looking for something to feed my brain, and have no desire to wade through circle jerk comments to find anything interesting.

It's not what's posted that makes it a "horndog site", but the responses to it.

Unfortunately TOD is a bit of a Boy's Club.

Edit: which is also shown by the advertisements on it. A Russian bride banner ad popped up a moment ago... Google ads obviously think this is a good target audience for it.

This woman has talent and given enough time will be the next generation of Moores or the good folks who did End of Suburbia. Her recurent theme of word play on "peek" and "peak" oil is fun. I watch a parade of high school kids past my door every day and anything that will make them start to think there might be a cloud on their future horizon is good.
Generally in sexual species, for the male sex is the end while for the female sex is the means to an end. Kriscan applies that very well.

Thanks Jografy!

Why do you think people are not commenting on the change in the opening from shirts to cats?

Kriscan keep up the good work. I hope you can get a crew or group to build on this to provide the meat and potatos for those who don't seem to be satisfied with the gravy.
I would guess, about the cats, that you are doing what marketing has done for a long time. Ads aimed at men have sexy females, ads aimed at women have cats in them. Most of the commentors on here are old guys like me so we skipped the cats and have spent most of our time talking sex. I can be as chauvenistic as JHK. I notice that one guy has said his wife liked the cats best. And with deference to Cyn downthread many of us know that if anything stable is to come in the future it will dend greatly upon the strength of women. But now I have to puzzle about the relationship between shirts and cats other than the above.

Gotta say, I prefer the cats*, but appreciate Kris' efforts to get the message of peak oil out.

I'll bet her approach does get to men who would otherwise never stumble across the subject.

Good going Kris.

*middle-aged geeky/environut female

Kris, I think the cats are great it is nice that you have a cat that shows a higher level of awareness than most people.

It is important to get the word out, especially among the young, there is a peak oil video game and novels et cet but I fear that many young people are too unaware about the problem. A peak oil world will after all be left to the young.

I have a number of young adult and teenage nieces and nephews who (except for one who is in Iraq) care or know nothing about P.O. The reality about your videos is that I could try to talk to my young adult and teenage nieces and nephews about PO and I doubt if I would make any impact, at least my nephews would pay attention to the video and might learn something.

I would like to ask you as a PO aware young persona couple of questions, first how and when did you become aware of this problem? and what can be done to better inform the young?

The change is coming and it could be soon, a precipitous drop off in supply could mean $400 or $500 a barrel oil, $20.00 a gallon gas. This is possible within a few years and this will dramatically change the economic status quo of the planet.

When the young people realize that the world is going to soon fundamentally change and that their living standards will be far lower than they are now, what will be the reaction overall.

I've been thinking and experimenting for a while now on how to reach the young'uns like me (25... oops, I've been 26 for a week... ugh).

Seeing as reading (and writing -- anyone graded a university paper recently?) seem to be going the way of the dinosaur, video looks like the way to go, at least for introductions. I love the 'Peak Moment' videos, but I can understand why most people my age and under wouldn't want to watch a couple of middle-aged hippies talk about their gardens, and I'm not even going to start on the theme music.

'The Story of Stuff' is absolutely fantastic and I send it to everyone I know on a regular and ongoing basis -- I send it out once every few months or so because I think it's that good and worth watching several times.

For those who listen to podcasts, I occasionally pass along episodes of 'The Reality Report,' but I get the impression no one actually listens to them.

ANYways, I think a charismatic female 'hostess' might be a great way to break into the minds of the "Boys Adrift" (http://www.boysadrift.com/) living in basements around the first world who are dying for purpose and meaning... millions of idling young men is one hell of an untapped resource.

P.S. I just re-watched oily cassandra's video and I almost died laughing looking at the tags she attached to the video... if she gets too many views the peak oil websites are going to get overrun with traffic from all kinds of sexual deviants, degenerates, and perverts. :)

It seems crazy to say that ‘awareness’ is perhaps not very important, because if ppl are ignorant of certain facts they can’t possibly act in function of those same facts. Nevertheless, Bush and Cheney, the supreme leaders of the US, are aware of peak oil; trying to understand how their knowledge has shaped their actions is arduous, but one can certainly say that they haven’t implemented policies that would seem rational or reasonable on this board, such as conservation, rationing, etc. Much the same applies to multiple other people and bodies. Such as the Swiss Government.

In the medical field / public health area, it appears that when voluntary behavioral change is desired - because coercion is impossible or would be ineffective - awareness campaigns can be highly successful. Aids in Switzerland is a good example, it really worked. The contrast is smoking; and the difference between the two lies in the fact that (simply put) wearing a condom is a positive act, an addition, whereas stopping smoking is a cancellation. Or, in other terms, only in the second case are we dealing with addiction.

(If one wants to argue that anti-smoking campaigns are effective, and one can, one has to say that they take hold gingerly after 60 years, as Hitler was the first leader who made attempts.)

So “awareness” is all very well, but one has to take into account the relation between it and behavior, and this is a very difficult topic, no linear, unambigous, general, rational, etc. relations exist.

Lastly, the systemic changes required by PO at all levels would seem to argue not for ‘consciousness raising’, another term for awareness, but something on the order of a new political party or religion (not that I would be keen on the latter) - a revolution; destruction and re-birth; level II systemic change, etc. depending on the kind of vocabulary one likes.

In the US (and elsewhere) it appears that the basics - the political system, money, the ‘free’ market, see the other thread, linked, remain unchallenged, and ‘forward movement’ becomes a matter of ‘awareness’, ‘new political correctness’, ‘lobbying for a pov’, and ‘identity politics’ - to be realized by attitude or perception change, effected by propaganda that borrows heavily from advertising (constructed with one aim only - get the consumer to buy.)

A tussle between different groups, different strands of opinion, different belongings, who all hope to become more visible, and face it, get more.. more power, more money, more respect.

That might be fine, or in fact not so fine, as it turns out, for homosexuals (they did not attain respectability in that way) or the 9/11 truth movement (now marginalized as just another club of opinion with its Truth days etc)..in any case PO is of a different order.


Okay, I can't stand it any more! Smart,sexy, older single white female here... I have been lurking here daily since 2005, and I think all you Boyz are great, Ha! But your all still just boys after all! Anyway, keep it up, :) you are doing great! (stroke, stroke) I love it! Cyn

Could this be an early endorsement of peak oil theory? ;)


This is the type of creativity deviating from the norm that causes a good impact. Aside from trying to measure its capability to induce changes in human behavior, grabbing attention is vital, and its the start of a good campaign. I've commented on other threads about the potential impact of the media, and this is a good example. Keep up the creativity flowing Kriscan!

I had a small idea for a sketch on SNL or similar. They always do these fake news segments. So the guy/gal reads off that the oil is running out and our civilization is at an end and then reads the obligatory line, "but we will find a solution as always", then you see him/her taking a gun out of a drawer, looking hopeless then pointing it at his head, lights dim, gunshot heard and sound of head falling on desk.

I noticed recently that everyone (press) recognizes PO but puts up all these stupid solutions we have already thoroughly discounted and says everything will be alright. Such a sketch would be a remedy to that, perhaps in the onion or so it would work.

Anyway, sex is normal life. Pretty girls are fun => PO is normal and fun. So it is good to know I am not crazy but a normal and fun guy. This is what the message has to be. A cult/club gets awful boring without some female comfort. Ideology is for the birds in the end if it ain't about people and relationships. Eggheads be damned!!! I want my woman and my whisky!!!

Early internet was a techie place with stupid e-mails low quality porn for geeks/programmers. PO started with engineers like Hubbert and the other professional types and built up to above average, college educated joes - non technicals - like me and has now broken through to being sexy and cool for youth and women(remember when internet got more females? hint-shopping, e-mail applications, etc.) , a new way to help the environment and bring a better life to all by stopping the mindless juggernaut of commerce, the sci-fi/horror film monster eating the earth and devouring our souls for dessert.

Another idea:
A chorus line with each girl dancing a high kick (Paris Crazy Horse??) each with a letter from P E A K O I L across their breast.

So Kriscan and OilyCassandra are the ultimate form of having arrived for the geek. We are now cool, virile and manly because we are on the right side of the future and therefore more likely to survive and therefore protect the female from harm and pass on our genes. Nate Hagens can anaylse that angle probably well in biology and psychology. Excess Nubile Females (Harem) is the ultimate sign of success, of having arrived.

Those Wall Street and Hollywood Tycoons can eat their hearts out now!

A cult/club gets awful boring without some female comfort.

Ah, so we are not to be members of this club, but comfort women.
How pathetic.

Like I said mate, this place is a Boy's Club.

Unfortunately that's true of much of the internet. I can recommend friendlier blogs if emailed... They lack the audience and depth of study of this one, but make up for it in breadth and quality of discussion, and are not so depressingly sausagefests.

Insatiable love

Eduard Mörike

This is how love is! This is how love is!
Not to be stilled with kisses:
who is such a fool as to try to fill
a sieve with mere water?
You could pour water in for a thousand years,
you could kiss for ever and ever,
and never find love's fulfillment.

For love, love has new and strange
desires at every hour; we
bit our lips sore
when we kissed today.
The girl kept quite still,
like a lambkin under the knife;
her eyes were pleading: go on,
the more it hurts, the better!

This is how love is, and always was,
ever since love has existed;
and not even Solomon himself,
for all his wisdom, ever loved in any other way.

She needs to set a good example and turn down the thermostat. Waaay down. I want to see some goose bumps!