On this morning’s broadcast of the same radio program from which the previous post was excerpted, I had another opportunity to ask Noam Chomsky a question. Although I sort of take issue with his estimation that Ivan Illich’s observations concerning Energy and Equity take a back seat to the “suicide pact” of capitalism, or “lemmings walking off a cliff” as Chomsky puts it, he’s probably right in a certain empirical sense. (I wonder if he does parties?) Still, I think a thorough understanding of Illich’s observations of the sociological impacts of energy policy and use merit a wider audience, particularly among those obligated to further study these complex issues as stakeholders in our future (read: everyone).
Why is it that protests on Wall Street and elsewhere — denouncing corporate greed and perverse distribution of wealth, and the attendant corruption of our institutions — why don’t we recognize energy policies and energy’s absolute relevance to inequity? (Indeed, amassing capital essentially correlates to determining energy policy.)
But do you really think this is primarily about class struggle? When we toss the capitalists out, who exactly are we going to bring in to assist in managing this clusterfuck we call our society? Some good old anti-capitalist professionals? Maybe even some young ones?
Well, did you ever consider the inequity and degradation that necessarily result from a high-energy consumption economy? Forget capitalist or socialist. Think: society gorging itself on energy actually deprives and frustrates the hell out of us.
Significantly, in this mostly unacknowledged aspect of quanta of energy as it correlates to inequity, the actual source of energy is irrelevant; whether it be petroleum, nuke plants, the “clean” energies of wind and solar, the hoped-for magnificent new battery; maybe even cheap plentiful energy gushing from used kitty litter, or some other techno-splendorous future development.