While that may seem a bit rich coming from someone who gets a big number of diaries about energy on the recommended list - or even front paged occasionally - I have yet to see this issue taken seriously beyond a fairly small group of people - those that recommend my diaries over and over, and discuss the issues to death, and, for many of them, despair of their powerlessness to change anything.
Why is energy not identified as a significant political issue on the domestic front? (And no, I am not talking about high gas prices)
Why is there so little awareness - or so much denial - that we are about to enter into a crisis of epic proportions, and that we have little (if any) time to do anything about it?
Why do Kos or Armando write so little about the topic?
This is not just another single-interest group. This will be the greatest crisis of our times.
So yes, I fell like I am shouting in a NY (or Paris) street and people are ignoring me:
- most of my diaries are recommended by the same crowd over and over (thanks guys!);
- my diaries, which benefit from the structural advantage of being posted early in the morning, almost never make it past the early afternoon; beyond a group of regular readers, they don't seem to click with the rest of the community. My biggest number of recommends ever, far from what other well-known diarists achieve, came on a recent diary with very limited value added, where I simply copied and commented upon two articles in the paper critical of Bush;
- Plutonium Page has kindly front paged some of my diaries a few times. They seemed to generate the same level of interest, judging from the number of comments and the identity of the commenters, as my other diaries. The "political" crowd never chips in, whether in the front page or the diaries. I may have missed it, but I have never seen a single front page post about the politics of energy.
But if Katrina does not act like a wake up call on the energy front, what will?? Oil dependency, vulnerable production facilities, pollution, global warming impact on weather, all the warning signs are there.
Energy seems to be a political issue today, just like house prices, in so far as people complain about high gas prices and Democrats can make cheap points against Bush for these high prices. My strong contention that gas prices are still much too low (but will get a lot higher pretty soon by force if not by choice) falls on deaf ears beyond a small minority. The point that the behavior of Americans on the energy front is unsustainable is met with resistance, denial, or the naive belief that technology and innovation will provide the magic bullet, or with the argument that it is political suicide to talk about conservation, or energy taxes, or any other policy that would go towards mitigating the problem of over-consumption and addiction to energy of the USA.
Frankly, I feel I am part of a group seen as just as kooky as those that argue that Dems do not need to show support for the troops. Extremists. Unrealistic dreamers. Annoying doomsayers. Traitors?
Let me say it it here loud and clear. Most of the people in that group are neither extremists not kooks nor dreamers. Quite the opposite, it is the most amazing and knowledgeable and reality-based group of people. I have learnt more here about energy in a year than I ever knew, and this is the sector that I work in for a living. We have a base of specialised knowledge and expertise and competence that I doubt can be equalled anywhere else. And it's all free. And yet, just as I write the diaries, they recommend them and discuss them, and many of us feel ignored and shunned.
The water temperature is rising, and we are all the proverbial frog slowly boiling to its death, oblivious to its fate. Let's not wait for the energy crisis to become so acute as to overwhelm our economies to react, for the outcome will only be war or misery or both. Let's put this issue on the political front stage, loudly and persistently.
Take the "poll" to show that you care.