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Peak oil “is the secret ticking time bomb under the global capitalist system”

—Bülent Gökay, International studies professor

Ancient gadgets and the myth of ever-increasing progress

New archeological findings of ancient axes in Africa provide a lesson in how we think about progress and cultural evolution

From Wikileaks or Saudi sheiks?

Why the world needs better data on oil, and how we might get it

Peak oil and our finite world; or, in praise of waste

Shortages won’t bring on a “Mad Max” world, Krugman argues—and we have our wasteful ways to thank for that

America is falling apart—and selling the pieces

Time to start looking for a prosperous way down, for ways of failing gracefully

Road to Serfdom: “right-wing crank” becomes best-seller

John Cassidy’s “How Markets Fail” explains how and why Hayek and his fellow free market advocates were cranks

Read: “Energy minister will hold summit to calm rising fears over peak oil”

The UK government and industry heads met to weigh up the risk of oil going into terminal decline, the Guardian reports

Read: “Is the global economy a Ponzi scheme?”

We’re using up the planet, “we’re targeting our own children and grandchildren.” Yep—it’s a Ponzi scheme

The Black Swan in everyday life

Betting against others’ ignorance can profit in the financial world, but what about in the brick-and-mortar world?

Read: “Far North”

an “eco-fi” novel by Marcel Theroux


books I've read on failure & grace

The World Without Us
The Last Oil Shock: A Survival Guide to the Imminent Extinction of Petroleum Man
A Paradise Built in Hell: The Extraordinary Communities That Arise in Disaster
Hell and High Water: Global Warming--the Solution and the Politics--and What We Should Do
The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl
The Tipping Point
Three Cups of Tea: One Man's Mission to Promote Peace... One School at a Time
The Upside of Down: Catastrophe, Creativity and the Renewal of Civilization
Out of Poverty: What Works When Traditional Approaches Fail
The Little Ice Age: How Climate Made History, 1300-1850
Confessions of an Eco-Sinner: Tracking Down the Sources of My Stuff
Deep Economy: The Wealth of Communities and the Durable Future
The Geography of Bliss: One Grump's Search for the Happiest Places in the World

Mason's favorite books »