Bob's Links and Rants

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Monday, May 16, 2005

Digging Deeper

From James Howard Kunstler:
I was in Tallahassee, Florida, last week talking to a large room full of planning officials. My message was pretty straightforward: every new housing subdivision, every new strip mall, every parking lagoon and big box chain-store pod that you issue approvals for from this point on will lead your country deeper into tragedy.

The response was apathetic, as though I were giving a class in Chinese algebra.

Florida is one of the multiple epicenters of a hypertrophic suburban growth machine that has taken the place of the US economy. Reforming it is unimaginable because without the business generated by a cancer-like replication of car infrastructure, the economy would consist of little besides hair cutting, fried chicken, and open heart surgery. In places like Florida (and California, and northern Virginia, and Las Vegas, and Dallas), all citizens are complicit in the drive toward tragedy because all want business-as-usual to continue. The idea that any set of circumstances might put a stop to it is laughable to them. What can you do for such a people determined to commit civilizational suicide?
Kunstler's blog features plenty of posts about the coming peak-oil apocalypse, with lots of good discussion in the comments. I like his blog because it makes me seem like an optimist.