Monday, May 12, 2008

Slowly I Write

I started writing a post on the Pugh Report from the United Nations which simply said that we have about 3 billion people living in cities now, and that in something like 30 years that would double to 6 billion people. The simple statistic blew my mind when you consider that the infrastructure doesn't exist now to support the population levels in the cities now, much less the surrounding areas. We desperately need actual decentralization. This is a huge topic, as I find out.

You have seen the post on Stagflation, and how it is playing out in the economy. That took more than a few minutes. And some of those commodities seem to have peaked, such as gold, maybe.

Oil, on the other hand seems destined to go higher. Goldman Sachs wrote a report about a spike to $200 a barrel. Can you say $8 a gallon for gas? Is anyone else wistful for $2.50 a gallon gas? Please don't shoot the messenger. If this price level happened this year, Congress would act, and it would probably not be smart, but it would do something to mollify the taxpayer/voter. A substitute is really needed.

There is something else that I am also hinting at, so let me be more specific. We need more telecommuting. More working from home, or local offices at computer centers, and less commutes that take huge amounts of time and gasoline to move a person from home to their work place. We can do a lot of business without seeing each other face to face.

Next year, $6 gasoline. It's not the price level, it's the rate of change that kills you. That's what the experts say. What do you say?

12 comments:

Glamourpuss said...

I say I'd love to be able to work at home. And petrol is now £1.15 a litre.

Puss

WNG said...

I say my next car will be a hybrid and that I could EASILY work from home at least 4 days a week. I also say that I live about ten minutes from my office but I have a coworker who just bought a house 30 minutes away - we need to rethink a LOT of things. Make a LOT of changes.

Open Grove Claudia said...

I work at home, live in town, take the bus or walk most places and only drive when I need groceries. D. rides his bike in the summer and fall until the snow comes. But we planned that 6 years ago when we bought this house.

Yes, gas will go to at least $6/gallon. Unless we invade Venezuela before Bush is out of office or go after the evil toxic mess of shale oil. So far, shale has been stopped by the water companies - send water to Arizona and So. California or use it to destroy entire echo systems and possibly get oil from shale.

This has happened before in the US (post depression - early 1950s). People grew gardens, kept bees, rationed their resources, recycled, and worked to 'get off the grid'. This is not what the gov't wants. People are easier to control when they are frightened, not when they are empowered or "independent".

Most people work so much that they are too exhausted to even think about the actual care of themselves - making their own food, growing their own vegetables, baking their own bread, etc. They can only be horrified at the rising costs. Do you think that's an accident?

The question in my mind is this: Are we are too numb or stuck in the "I deserve every resource I want" mentality to actually care for ourselves?

Odat said...

I don't really know what it will take for people to realize that it's time to stop wasting. It's something this generation has been brought up on. There is more and more and more. Well...as you aptly pointed out....NO, There ain't no mo! And we all pay the price.

Peace

WanderingGirl said...

I say, I wanna see some FarmVegas stories!

Alison said...

Having lived in France, where the price of gas was routinely 4 times more than it was here (I haven't calculated lately), I have a strange view of gas prices. We live in a neighborhood where we can walk to grocery stores, the PO, pharmacies, restaurants, and a great liquor store (among other things), so now that the weather is nice we are making an effort to do so.

On the other hand, I remember France, and in the town I lived in, folks drove their cars lots of places, no matter the price of gas. And it's still more expensive there than it is here.

I don't know if that makes any sense at all.

PhoenixHearse said...

I don't know all the facts about the economy, but I'm fairly certain that the average salary increase due to inflation is not rising as quickly as the fuel prices.

So my biggest worry isn't paying more for fuel, it's having to budget a much larger amount of my paycheck.

Crankster said...

Tonight, the wife looked at me and said, "If we still had the Jeep, it would cost almost $100 to fill up. I nearly fell over.

I've discovered the wonders of a transportation infrastructure and have no real desire to return to a pre-infrastructure lifestyle. Telecommuting, light rail, bike paths, buses...we need to do it all, and we needed to do it yesterday!

James Burnett said...

Monty, I'm always amazed at your knowledge of this stuff. And while I don't always instantly comprehend it, your explanations make sense. In this case, you won me over as soon as I saw "telecommunte." I've been advocating that for years. It would eliminate the need for mega-office buildings, etc. The problem is there are lazy adults with tiny brains who won't do what they're getting paid to do, if someone isn't watching over them. Not saying they represent most of us, but you know the whole squeaky wheel thing: that small segment of workers will prevent telecommuting from ever getting as big as it needs to be.

James Burnett said...

Monty, I'm always amazed at your knowledge of this stuff. And while I don't always instantly comprehend it, your explanations make sense. In this case, you won me over as soon as I saw "telecommunte." I've been advocating that for years. It would eliminate the need for mega-office buildings, etc. The problem is there are lazy adults with tiny brains who won't do what they're getting paid to do, if someone isn't watching over them. Not saying they represent most of us, but you know the whole squeaky wheel thing: that small segment of workers will prevent telecommuting from ever getting as big as it needs to be.

skinnylittleblonde said...

No doubt...we need to find alternative fuels, working habits, lifestyles and more to deal with our ever-growing population base, consumption & life span...among other things. My goal? By 2011...having my bike as my sole means of transportation...working & living in a manner in which that is perfect. Lol...smart cars = no cars ;)

GrizzBabe said...

I'm all up for telecommuting. I'll answer the company phone lines from my bedroom.