Imagine for a moment …

Imagine for a moment that it’s the second half of the 21st century. Oil is several $k a barrel in today’s prices and there isn’t nearly enough to go around. The global climate is several degrees hotter than it ought to be. Industrial agriculture very probably broke down catastrophically for a while there due to oil shortages and regular agriculture has been hard hit by freak weather and soil erosion, but people have made their adjustments. Humans are pretty adaptable creatures after all, but it wasn’t a bit pleasant at the time or even remotely painless. Hundreds of millions may die or become refugees.

We know now, with the benefit of hindsight, that the boards, syndicates and governments of the Earth potentially knew all about oil depletion from the 1960’s onwards, and climate change from the 1980’s onward. They were told, and yet they did nothing useful about it but instead looked for ways to turn it to their advantage. In the early part of the 21st Century the most powerful country on Earth, staring this problem in the face, invaded the second largest oil producer and then held the price of oil down at gunpoint, still overconsuming blindly until the crash.

When our descendants are grown, and of an age to have influence in their world, this is the world that they’ll most likely have to face.

We’ll have tried our best to give them what might help, I hope, but we probably can’t easily imagine what their life will be like.

What will they think of us for letting this happen? Was capitalism too powerful? Was the media too persuasive? Was our oil-funded miserable ease too ennervating to permit us to do something?

What should we tell them, assuming this situation comes to pass?

No doubt: there won’t be a state pension system to save us if they kick us out on our incontinent arses for letting this awful shit happen.

So we’d better start thinking about what we’re going to say to them, assuming we didn’t actually find any way to prevent this.


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