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Thread: Stay Home, Read, Have Sex

  1. #1
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    Stay Home, Read, Have Sex

    It should be a truly fascinating — albeit possibly enormously grim — thing to watch, one of the more dramatic and revolutionary market-driven shifts in modern history, upheaving everything we've become so accustomed to and changing behaviors and attitudes and alliances and political agendas and ass-girths and no I'm not talking about the "Lost" finale or the new 3G iPhone or how Brangelina's twins are a sure sign of the Second Coming.

    It's the massive, painful spike in gas and oil prices, that most wonderful/frightening harbinger of doom/change/turmoil known to modern society that is fast turning into a calamitous global hurricane, ready to wreak havoc on just about every aspect of modern life, and that includes food and transport and sex and drugs and rock 'n' roll and just about everything else that makes America, America.

    What, too dramatic? Not by much. The initial signs are all in place. The price of a barrel of oil is soaring, production levels are peaking, the world economy is shuddering in the face of a permanent production slowdown, even the most staid economists and prognosticators are blinking hard and saying holy hell, we really have no idea how this will all shake out.

    You can already feel the initial clenching. As a nation, they say we're already driving about 4 percent less than we did last year, which translates into 11 billion miles per month, which, for gluttonous and wanton Americans, is technically considered "a lot." SUV sales are tanking fast and trading in your old gas hog is increasingly difficult as rampant feelings of comeuppance and I-told-you-so smugness from small car/scooter/bike owners spread across the land like a viral Weezer video.

    But that's just the beginning. It appears that the dour, much-maligned peak oil sages from a few years back were at least partially correct, and the let's-drill-everywhere weasels from the war-for-oil Republican Party were, quite naturally, wrong. There are simply no indicators that gas will drop back to the $2 range anytime soon, there is very little "elasticity" left in the global petroleum market, and China and India are dipping larger and larger ladles into a smaller and smaller pot, all pointing to a very good chance that the United States will see seven or eight bucks a gallon just in time for the final SUV manufacturing plant to switch over to making Segways and sun visors.

    Big deal? Hell yes it is. No other crucial, universal market commodity has seen a 200-400 percent price spike in such a short period. It means a much broader, more dangerous upheaval in global energy, given how that damnable petroleum is everywhere, from food production to manufacturing, shipping to construction.

    It will be heaven, it will be hell. President Obama will likely hesitate not at all to instigate a massive hybrid/plug-in/alterative fuel initiative, challenging inventors and Big Auto alike to finally get their asses in gear and knock it off with the internal combustion BS that hasn't changed in any fundamental way in, oh, about 150 years.

    Carpooling will soar. People will walk, bike, scooter, take the bus, work shorter weeks, stroll and amble and hum a merry tune, reacquaint themselves with the neighborhood, telecommute, vacation locally, have more phone sex. They will shop locally to avoid skyrocketing shipping prices, buy less plastic, recycle. The era of cheap oil that enabled hideous urban sprawl will now quite possibly flip over and begin to enable the exact reverse ... whatever that is.

    Alternative energy sources? All the rage. From hemp to algae to ass fat to pig manure to dead cats, the question will soon be, what won't we consider as a new source to power up the Can-Am Spyder to get us to the dance on time? Ingenuity will flourish. Ingenuity will confound. Ingenuity will annoy the hell out of millions of die-hard car lovers who just want to drive the Audi to Whole Foods without having to sell a kidney. Oh well.

    A full tank of gas will become a true luxury item. Stepping hard on the accelerator will seem like a crazy indulgence. Lengthy road trips will be a more decadent joy, the equivalent to a case of wine or a shiny new watch or that other wildly expensive liquid that now runs about 10 bucks a gallon, known as "bottled water."

    San Francisco? We're lucky. We're already a walking city, compact and navigable and even I can easily stroll from my flat in Alamo Square all the way downtown in about a half hour, with only three or four slightly nervous glances over my shoulder as I pass through the housing projects and only recoiling for about 10 solid minutes as I endure a particularly hellish, grungy five-block strip of the Market Street corridor. Mmm, walking. It's refreshing and depressing.

    But many places won't have it quite so good. Vast tracts of urban sprawl from Atlanta to Los Angeles to Mexico City will likely suffer badly from such an abrupt shift.

    Plenty of horrors loom. Merciless oil companies will likely push harder to develop brutal, environmentally rapacious methods of extracting oil from alternative sources like tar sand and small puppies and oily teenagers, ruthless techniques that were formerly prohibitively expensive, but now more economically feasible. Far from reversing or even slowing their environmental impact, they could simply amplify it a hundredfold in a ruthless drive to maintain gluttonous profits.

    It will be wonderful, it will be terrible. Like the models used to predict global warming, I'm betting that the fiscal models some economists have been using to predict the global energy uproar are proving to be a bit inadequate, given how the economy is now one big interconnected interrelated interdependent organism and therefore when you strip one of the major gears, well, it's anybody's guess what happens next.

    Personally, I think the predictions of global petroleum-related cataclysm are exaggerated and excessive. But so are predictions that all will be fine and we will feel no pain because someone really smart will come along to solve it all for us, and the worst that will come of it is that we have to trade in our Lexuses and Town & Countries for solar-powered, emissions-free scooters made of hemp and old shoes and used silicone harvested from recycled porn stars. We should be so lucky.

    In a perverse way, I love this place, this place where all predictions fail, this place where no one knows exactly what the hell will happen. Will an oil crunch force major nations of the world to work together in unprecedented, selfless ways for the betterment of all humanity? Or will it push insular, angry, fearful nations to kill each other over dwindling resources (aka: "the Bush Method")? Or will it be a wacky, volatile mix of both? Let's go for one last long, leisurely drive, and talk about it.

    News Moderator: Herb Fellow - http://www.420Magazine.com
    Source: San Francisco Bay Area — News, Sports, Business, Entertainment, Classifieds: SFGate
    Copyright: 2008, San Francisco Chronicle
    Contact: Mark Morford, SF Gate Columnist
    Website: Stay home, read, have sex / Will insane gas prices finally pummel us into evolving? How bad will it get?
    Last edited by Herb Fellow; 06-04-2008 at 05:09 AM.

  2. #2
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    Re: Stay Home, Read, Have Sex

    Burn freeze dried politicians... well just the ones whose views we dont like....

    (Here is my little rant about Hybrid cards based on personal experience)

    I dont think electric cars offer the solution for vehicles just yet... I was a sales Mgr for Toyota during the early Prius rage: I was at the fifth largets dealership in a region of 72 dealers,, One of the biggest things a certain crowd DID NOT like was the voltage of the car. For electrical work the 3000 or so volt battery is removed by two people wearing thick arm length rubber gloves and then placing the battery on a thick rubber matt devoted to NOTHING but the holding of these batteries. I can remember very sincere looks of concern on the faces of master Toyta mechanics as they dealt with the potential for such immense voltage. Yes they are trained and trained very well...just like anything else there is always the remote chance of ugliness

    I also wonder what would happen in a very serious wreck with all the right cirmsumstances. There could B a phenominal amount of juice around a twisted pile of metal along with the potential for a broken battery casing draining a not so pleaasnt liquid...


    There was also some math going around the dealership that we devised. Taking the demographic of prius buyers, thier driving habits and the annual mileage the drive (based on trade in ODO's).. most of these folk will B driving a prius for 4-5 yerars b4 they start to see any type savings.... I am sure this has cut way down as we did this a few years back and gas has hit the roof...

    I have one other huge beef with the Prius crowd... I literally sold close to 50 of the things on a pre-sale order me and wait for delivery situation; at full sticker price no less.

    The other thing that always got me ( & I take some blame here as it was my job) was the after sale items. Easily 90% of the people who opurchased a Prius from me wanted a cow slaughtered and skinned for leather interior.... hmmmmm

    Since I won a v-8 4runner ID prolly B down for one as I hate buying gas...

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    Re: Stay Home, Read, Have Sex

    I would hope that many of the hybrid owners are doing it for the environment. I believe that is what the article is saying, "I hate that I can't continue in my big gas guzzling vehicle, but I love that we are going to be doing great things for the environment."

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    Re: Stay Home, Read, Have Sex

    I see that in the article bigtime... I was just blathering on my view of hybrid cars based on experience. I could see myself in a hybrid someday...

    Im just glad I sold my boat b4 the gas prices rolled in...

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    Re: Stay Home, Read, Have Sex

    I have a Buick that I only drive when it is raining; the rest of the time I'm on my motorcycle (50-55 miles per gallon.) I've never ridden in a hybrid car, so I can't express any views as to performance.

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    Re: Stay Home, Read, Have Sex

    Quote Originally Posted by HippieGuy View Post
    You mean people might actually have to slow down, sounds like heaven to me.


    Matty
    To me to brother, to me too.

  7. #7
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    Re: Stay Home, Read, Have Sex

    yeah...

    I typically try to keep it under ludicrous speed now. Gas prices, insurance and tixx really start to hurt...Not to mention the potential of not so nice incidents stemming from initial reasons for contact.

    Riding in a hybrid car is interesting to say the least, don't forget it is breaking the conventional. The prisu especially as is such an odd design: The little fishbowl (lolol) window on the front side took some getting used to. To not hear internal combustion at a stand still is odd, even worse is being aware of it shutting down to go all electric. The instinctual reaction is to look for red lights all over the dashboard and see what is going on. One solution is to crank the tunes!


    Yeah I said I could see myself in a hybrid car, it sort of makes me feel like a hypocrit right about now. This is my fuel inhaling, ozone melting play toy. We can race from Sunoco to Sunoco if U like..
    It is with the builder right now being tuned for me to move 180 miles north with an altitude gain....
    Xcceleration

    ps: Forgive me if posting a link in my reply is bad news...
    Last edited by topdeeni; 06-04-2008 at 09:50 AM. Reason: Not reading the exam b4 answering...

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    Re: Stay Home, Read, Have Sex

    ^ that a beautiful piece of equipment you got!

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    Re: Stay Home, Read, Have Sex

    i think a big help right now would be like if big coperations like every friday or somethin had a work from home day, think of the millions that could be saved not to mention all the harm stopped from hurting the enviornment, i mean one day might not seem like much, but if 5 million people didn't drive for one day a week think of the benefits. Or i beleieve a national no-drive day should happen, it'd be a law not to drive and if you had an emergency you could call the police for a ride, since we fuel their tanks up.......
    If everybody smoked a blunt to relieve their mind what could be a better place

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    Re: Stay Home, Read, Have Sex

    I agree, four day work weeks are the way to go.

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    Re: Stay Home, Read, Have Sex

    Great article!

    I wish more people would see what this oil crisis is doing not only to our transportation habits but to the food situation as well. I predict our cheap microwavable meals will be almost nonexistent in a few years due to more and more countries placing bans on exports. Gone will be the era of cheap, fast food. Can our society handle that?

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    Re: Stay Home, Read, Have Sex

    Not weeks ago my dad told me that some critic from either the news or tv that he reads/watches was joking saying, "a positive outlook on the fuel crisis is it will solve our growing obesity epidemic as Americans would rather fill up their SUV than go to McDonalds."

    I laughed thinking, "so true" and sadly enough I just read that this year was the first that childhood obesity in America had not gotten worse and had leveled. Now I'm all for it, but does society today really allow even their health and eating habits to be controlled by money/the economy? I believe they do.

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    Re: Stay Home, Read, Have Sex

    Personally, oil or no, I can never carpool. People are idiots, and I smoke. I would end up throwing one out my moving car.

    Our entire society is made up of people trying to take advantage of each other for profit. (Something they forgot to add in economics class) For the 20% that have no conscience and can sleep at night, it works out well. No matter what actions we take to make it better, there will be people using these actions to take advantage.

    Any car that uses batteries with current tech is not an answer at all. These "Prius" like vehicles require more resources to recycle and store old toxic batteries then the entire fuel savings over the life of the car.

    Hydrogen fuel cells and hydrogen power is the next sustainable fuel, so invest in Air Products, it is the largest distributor of the most plentiful gas on the planet. BMW has a working design right now, today. Unfortunately, big oil is doing everything it can to stop them by creating stories about how "unsafe" these cars are.

    Another solution is nuclear reactor powered steam engines. We can build containers that will withstand the impact of a train wreck, there is no reason we cannot create an engine that uses a tiny amount of uranium or plutonium to run a car FOREVER. (A nuclear powered submarine needs refueling after 20-30 years of constant running) However, capitalism will not allow such innovation, as it has proven in the past. Where is my everlasting light bulb? Hell we cannot even make a coffe maker that will live longer than us, there is not enough profit in it.

    Until batteries are made from bio sources(they have this tech now as well, but it's a ways out of production) we just cannot put billions of tons of toxic metals into the dumps. Many will recycle, but how many won't?

    Bio-fuel based on cellulose should be a requirement. All coal fired power plants should be burning methane and bio-fuels. All large consumers of power need to be required to purchase at least 50% of their energy from a renewable source. (hydro, bio, nuclear)

    There are so many jobs that can be created with just a few rule changes. Imagine the need for the mechanics when every big rig in the country needs to be fitted with bio-fuel equipment. Not to mention the people that create the kits.

    We will always use crude oil for one purpose or another. There are some things you just cannot make out of anything else, but that list is very short.

    We should have been moving on this for the last 30 years. Thank your parents and capitalism for the position we are in today.

    I hope this generation has amassed enough wealth to take care of their children and children's children, because 2 or 3 generations in America will be living together like third world nations when this is all over with.

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    Re: Stay Home, Read, Have Sex

    Quote Originally Posted by Boss View Post
    Our entire society is made up of people trying to take advantage of each other for profit. (Something they forgot to add in economics class) For the 20% that have no conscience and can sleep at night, it works out well. No matter what actions we take to make it better, there will be people using these actions to take advantage.

    We should have been moving on this for the last 30 years. Thank your parents and capitalism for the position we are in today.

    I hope this generation has amassed enough wealth to take care of their children and children's children, because 2 or 3 generations in America will be living together like third world nations when this is all over with.
    Took the words outta my mouth. +Rep

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    Re: Stay Home, Read, Have Sex

    There are so many jobs that can be created with just a few rule changes. Imagine the need for the mechanics when every big rig in the country needs to be fitted with bio-fuel equipment. Not to mention the people that create the kits.
    If I'm not mistaken, it's the cheapest refit,
    gas or diesel engine to burn veggie(hemp) oil.

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