Especially as I monitor the discussions in the ongoing presidential campaign, it seems that the U.S.A. has finally become unhinged -- disconnected from any sense of the realities that ought to be urgent topics for public debate. The downward spiral of imagined concerns has now hit rock bottom with renewed attention to a subject most of us thought had been settled half a century ago, the right of couples to exercise contraception. Are we headed back to the Dark Ages?
One question that has almost vanished from sight is the nation's energy policy, its present at future course. Other than increasingly loud complaints about rapidly rising gasoline prices, the discussion about energy in Washington and elsewhere has ground to a halt. Rather than pursue much needed measures to cut consumption fossil fuels and to speed the necessary transition to renewable, carbon neutral, non-radioactive energy sources, the country seems bound and determined to persist in its "Drill, baby, drill" fantasies about energy abundance, dreams accompanied by ever louder drumbeats in Washington and the TeVee news promoting another costly, futile energy war in the Middle East.
It seems hard for our dumbed-down, bought off political elites and for much of the citizenry to understand how little time there is to recognize the basic facts about energy and to start moving in more positive directions. One problem seems to be that the literature on matters like the arrival of "peak petroleum" is just too voluminous and complex for everyday folks and ordinary politicians to understand. That excuse, however, will now be much harder to hide behind because the good people at Incubate Pictures and the Post Carbon Institute have combined forces to produce a well-researched, engaging, animated, half hour long film, "There's No Tomorrow" by Dermont O'Connor, that lays out the multimillion year history and present predicament of fossil fuels in a way that is both entertaining and informative. It deserves an Academy Award for best short movie. Both adults and children can understand can grasp its argument and data with ease. Take a look and then take action!