Cognitive dissonance? Denial? or Cranial Incapacity?

I’ve been thinking about this a bit this week. We had a Solar Action meeting, and the discussion turned to those around the University – from disciplines where they should know better – who don’t acknowledge the coming paradigms, indeed who seem to indulge in ego-bolstering activities as if in denial.

It’s something I’ve noticed around Campus before – the inter-disciplinary genuflection, nobody adjudicating in an overarching manner. Currently, Economics holds sway, and optimism is approved of. Vibrant, says the VC.

Here is a seat of learning, entirely capable of presenting the case to the public, but – we get Dr Susan Krumdiek (who knows enough to know better in my humble opinion) taking on the DCC look at Peak Oil. Google the questionnaire, and it’s only about transport. Who was the twit who decided that? For years, I and others, have pointed  out to the Council that it’s EVERYTHING, food proximity, food production, infrastructure (all pipework is oil-based) machinery, plastics, everything. It would include a look at the building regs, too, if you were addressing Peak Oil in any meaningful way.

Transport is the least of the issues, and could be fudged for 20 years in a gradual morph to public transport, rail, bikes and walking. It’s the other questions need answered, and I’m sure she knows that. So what’s she done? The customer is always right, take the money and run?

That’s not an acceptable approach from academia, in my book. If they don’t state it as it is, who will? It only leaves non-vested-interest aficionados like me.

The media fail miserably too. As I’ve mentioned before, the reporting of this issue, and the presentations about it from Sustainable Dunedin, Solar Action, Transition Towns, and folk like Bob Lloyd and myself, can be seen between the following brackets ( ). Sure, they’ve printed the odd op/ed, but not for a year, and it doesn’t get assimilated into their Business section, their Editorials, or anything.

That’s the ODT, but it’s the same for most NZ media. The thin-on-the-ground exceptions would be Bryan Crump on Nat Radio Nights, a wee bit Kim Hill and Chris Laidlaw, and that’s about it. Business on Nat Radio is a joke: “an economist said, an economist said, an economist said” and that’s just this morning. That’s just an off-load of responsibility for the opinion, but the falsehood is where it masquerades as news. It takes a conscious thought process to realise that.

Why?  Well, some will be religious-based. I see that as immaturity surely the sign of being grown up, is when you take responsibility for your actions, good or bad. Some will be because it impacts their dreams – paying off the investment renters, becoming whatever they haven’t become yet. Some probably guess/know what is coming, but are in parental denial, or just shut it out. I feel less grumpy with that lot, but they’re still no use.

We’re going to lose this race. The planet has less than 20 years of anything like societal cohesion left. Folk like Bob Lloyd and myself, experts like Heinberg and others, think it will be a lot less. Maybe we will just bump along down, from fiscal collapse to fiscal collapse, with episodes of QE and debt-forgiveness.

Maybe we just go for war over resources – which is the real reason for Iraq and Afghanistan, and watch the Arctic. Several local or a global doozie. The result won’t be pretty, or good for the survivors.

The Powerdown option is being ignored, probably because it doesn’t represent ‘growth’, or optimism.

I used to get grumpy with the individual persona, but I’m too long in tooth for that, and tend more to ‘forgive them, for they know not what they do’ these days.

But oh, it’s frustrating!

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