Friday, May 30, 2008

The survey

Okay - the survey is pathetic. I know the survey is pathetic. The idea is that you are supposed to stretch yourselves a little bit here. Choose "other" and leave your ideas in a comment.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Peak oil cliff

Maybe it doesn't really matter how we handle rising gas prices at the library.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Gas prices affecting utilization

My public library is currently expanding neighborhood branches and adding a new branch. I'm wondering how the increases in gas prices are going to affect circulation, and our door count. We've already touched the $4.00 per gallon mark, and many analysts predict $5.00 per gallon by the end of summer (I've even heard by mid July).

Maybe we should all be focusing more on our web presence? Fewer and fewer people are going to be willing to drive to the library, so our neighborhood traffic is going to become even more important. Centralized branches are old school. We're going to need smaller neighborhood branches with less frequent transportation of resources between branches. It's time to start preparing ourselves for conditions that are likely to present themselves soon. Participate in the survey that I have posted on the right.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Community and perspective

While the peak oil issue has been weighing heavily on my mind, things are not all doom and gloom. Peak oil also presents opportunities. As the world that we know rapidly disappears, we have an opportunity to create stronger communities - return to a more tribal way of life. Community gardens will become an important part of our daily lives. Many more of us are going to need to be personally involved in growing and preserving food. Thinking and working collectively will be important in the first stages of a post hydrocarbon world.

There is no way around the fact that many people will not make the transition. Unrest resulting from hunger and deprivation could last a very long time. One preparation that we can make involves moving into a close physical proximity to those we love. Gather your tribe. Plan for multiple home heating methods. Learn about water purification. Grow your own food. Enjoy what will doubtlessly be considered the last years of the golden age of western civilization.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

I'm no fun at parties

I guess its been a while since I posted anything about how I'm feeling. And since blogs have a tendency to be a little like self directed therapy (or can be anyway) I'm going to make a personal confession right here and now. This may not come as a great surprise to you dear readers, but the fact is, I have a nasty little rage issue. And it's growing.

I'm relatively certain that we have hit, or will soon hit, peak oil. Yet everyone around me seems intent upon moving to the suburbs. I have this preoccupation with the notion that almost no one around me understands that we are living in a hydrocarbon enhanced dream state. Without a steady stream of oil a hell of a lot of us are simply going to cease to exist.

If you knew that there was no reason to go to the grocery store (because nothing is there) and you have no natural gas coming into your home and your municipal water supply was unfit to drink and your mobility was reduced to just where you can walk or ride your bike and even that was entirely unsafe because of the bands of starving looters wandering the streets, how long would you last?

Now - this isn't going to happen overnight. But I see it in our creepily near future. Am I alone in these thoughts? When I look around and see myself surrounded by bloated corpses am a really alone? The folks at Peak Oil Blues are trying to help people cope with the realization that our lives are going to change in a dramatic fashion one day soon. I'm not optimistic that we'll be prepared, or that we will work collectively when the shit hits the fan.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Hillary's base in WV

As always, a picture is worth a thousand words.

Friday, May 2, 2008

The IMF is broke

Actually it is running a 400 million dollar annual deficit. These guys are supposed to be the masterminds of modern economic thought. Ha! Keep them away from my household finances!

Read more about it in Mark Weisbrot's LA Times article The IMF's dwindling fortunes. Looks like the "Chicago School" of economic thought is finally falling into disrepute.