free html hit counter Peak Oil Debunked: 32. IS PEAK OIL DOOM A RELIGION?

Friday, August 19, 2005


ANSWER: Yes. Peak oil doom is a pernicious cult. The "believers" are just Jehovah's Witnesses in disguise. Who needs Colin Campbell when the end of the world was foretold 2000 years ago in THE BIBLE.

The doomers pass out tracts from the Church Fathers, like the ASPO newsletter. The Hubbert curve is their sacred symbol. The synergy is good, and I think the doomers should buy out the Jehovah's Witnesses and leverage their tract distribution channels. Photoshop in the Hubbert's curve in place of the cross. Do a search-replace, and change "Satan" to "Technology" or "Global Capitalism". The mayhem and die-off illustrations for the end of world can be used as is. As can the idyllic illustrations of your tranquil, grassy home in the "Kingdom of God", except the caption will be changed to "Sustainable, local agriculture".

The Jehovah's Witnesses also have extensive knowledge of how to respond as a religious organization when your date for the end of the world comes and goes without event:

When 1914 had come and gone, with no Jesus in sight, Russell modified his teachings and claimed Jesus had, in fact, returned to Earth, but that his return was invisible. His visible return would come later, but still very soon.Source

Here's another eerie parallel. After two previous failed predictions, the JWs predicted the end of the world yet again, this time for 1975. When 1975 came and went, they blamed it on "faulty data", just like Colin Campbell:

Knorr was succeeded as head of the Jehovah’s Witnesses, by Frederick Franz. He had been the Witnesses’ leading theologian, and his services were often called upon. For some years the sect's magazines had been predicting that Armageddon would occur in 1975. When it didn't, Franz had to find an explanation.

Witnesses believe that Adam was created in 4026 B.C. and that human beings have been allotted 6000 years of existence until Armageddon and the beginning of the millennium. This figure is based on a "creative week" in which each of six days is equal to 1,000 years, with the Sabbath or seventh day being the beginning of the millennium. Simple arithmetic gives 1975 as the year Armageddon would arrive. Franz explained that Armageddon would actually come 6000 years after Eve's creation. But when 1975 came and went, the Witnesses had to "adjust" their chronology to cover up a failed prediction. They accomplished this by maintaining that no one knew exactly how long after Adam's creation Eve came on the scene. Franz said that it was months—even years. Hence he was able to "stretch" the 1975 date to some indeterminate time in the future. In any case, Franz said that Witnesses would just have to wait, knowing the end is right around the corner. Source

Jan. 1, 1976 must have been a depressing day for the JWs. Morale was at low ebb. But don't lose faith troops! The end is still "right around the corner", just like it was back in 1914.


A missing prediction:
2000: Religious nuts predict end of world due to Y2K computer virus

Peak oil doom isn't science. It's an end-of-the-world cult, pretending to be science, just like 'Y2K Theory'. The Y2Kers claimed to be "scientific" and concerned with "evidence", but in retrospect, were unmasked as a bunch of religious nuts preaching the "End Times".

Here's another one:
2007: Religious nut Richard "Olduvai Theory" Duncan predicts end of world due to "Peak Oil Olduvai Cliff Event"


At Saturday, August 20, 2005 at 11:15:00 AM PDT, Blogger James said...

I appreciate the snark, JD, but replace Peak Oilers with PO doomers and your description is more apt :P

I say this because the science behind the concept of PO is rather solid (e.g. the amount of oil in the world is finite; when the demand for oil outstrips supply, prices will be driven higher, etc.)

But yes JD, though PO will cause hardship for everyone over the 1st half of the 21st century, it will not sever the Achilles Tendon of society.

We will muddle through and achieve the things the need to be done to ensure the stability of the world. Once this is acheived, a concerted effort can be mounted (Energy Mathattan Project) to find a way solve our energy problems for the forseeable future.

At Saturday, August 20, 2005 at 5:37:00 PM PDT, Anonymous WW said...

Jehovah's Witnesses? Surely you mean Jevon’s Witnesses?

At Sunday, August 21, 2005 at 1:09:00 AM PDT, Blogger JD said...

Jevon’s Witnesses

At Wednesday, November 16, 2005 at 2:42:00 PM PST, Anonymous Thomas said...

It's really funny reading this. Not just because of the world-class sarcasm, but because walking back to the hotel from the ASPO conference in Lisbon, May 2005 one of my friends said: "Well, I hope we haven't just become members of some cult" We laughed nervously and assured ourselves that of course we hadn't because the evidence was so compelling...

I still believe PO is real, as is the message of this blog, but it is not doom.

Personally, as an engineer in energy technology, I can't wait for it to happen. Partially to just rip off the band aid and get it over with, but just as much because my stock is gonna go up. My area of interest will most likely gain more focus for a while :-)

I do firmly believe we will have even more energy than today after having made the transition to renewable/fusion/whatever. In my mind there's nothing to worry about - in the long run.


At Monday, December 12, 2005 at 11:04:00 AM PST, Anonymous Korey Manseau said...

Very interesting.

At Monday, June 18, 2007 at 11:52:00 AM PDT, Blogger Caseygrl said...

Interesting, indeed. I have to agree with thomas that we will have more energy after this PO is all said and done. I also see a perhaps bumpy transition to alternative energy sources, mainly since the current white house cronies Bush and Cheney isn't helping by being the oil companies organ monkeys. But I can see a big change happening once Bush leaves office and we get on a better (i hope) energy plan that has the US getting off of oil in the next 2 decades.
Hey Thomas, what stock would you recommend? i'm wanting to put some cash into some alternative fuel companies but i don't know which ones to pick.

At Friday, June 20, 2008 at 5:58:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Peak Oil already happened in the U.S. in 1970, you fools in denial!

ALL oil fields peak and the last truly huge ones were discovered back in the 1960s. Most of major U.S. fields were discovered in the 30s and their depletion was depleted with great accuracy.

Tar sands (bitumen) and especially shale, require far more energy input than conventional oil, hence they are part of the peak down-slope.

The world is now consuming 1 billion barrels of oil in under 2 weeks. The U.S. burns that amount in about 50 days, with demand rising each year. Do the math with any new X-billion barrel reserves touted as "significant" and you'll see that they really aren't.

Comparing Peak Oil SCIENCE to religious zealotry is the opposite of reality. Fundamentalists are the ones who treat resources as supernaturally-created and infinite, so long as Man controls sin, that is. But Jesus won't save us from gluttony this time.

At Friday, June 20, 2008 at 6:07:00 PM PDT, Anonymous E.A. said...

RE "doom" in general:

Since when is the world a safe place? Since when does nature care about people's wants and needs? Nature keeps us alive yet owes us nothing.

"Doomers" are generally realists with the courage to not be phony-happy all the time. It's the sheeple with constant stupid smiles on their faces who worry me.

Nature is now setting the price of oil and whining won't put us back in control. Conservation might.

The cessation of mindless "economic growth" (aka overpopulation) is our best bet for sustainability.


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