Sunday, September 25, 2005

The New American Chauvinism

The American way of life, sprawling suburbs and Sport utility Behemoths, cheap imported consumer goods and tacky box stores, is doomed. It can be prolonged, but it will never be sustained. Hurricane Katrina should have ben a wake up call, but most of America rolled over and hit the snooze button, not wanting to have to deal with this fact until it flips us off our mattresses and on to the floor. Thousands of Texans, fleeing Hurricane Rita and depleting gas stations on their way is a portent of the things to come.
Right now, the world is heading towards something called peak oil. Some say we have already hit it, others say it's still a few years away. What this means is that as demand for gasoline increases, production will fail to keep up with that demand as more and more resources dry up. This will drive the cost of consumer goods up as the cost of shipping them cross country will continue to rise until it becomes prohibitive. The expensive and over mortgaged house in the suburbs will severely devalue as the cost of the daily commute to the job in the city takes up most your paycheck.
Americans will continue to play along with the charade as long as they have a job and the oil companies condition us to the high fuel prices by raising and lowereing the prices until we will be glad to pay five dollars a gallon because we saw what it was like at six dollars a gallon.
Of course, there are those who feel that this justifies the war in Iraq, the oil is needed to protect this grotesque American way of life, the rampant consumerism and mindless wastefulness. They are called right wingers and their attitude reflects a New American Chauvinism.
Chauvinist is a term derived from the French after one Nicolas Chauvin, a soldier in Napolean's Army who displayed an excessive militant patriotism. The term, chauvinism, was meant to exemplify blind and excessive nationalism, was co-opted by the feminist movement of the sixties and seventies and used against those males who rightly felt themselves superior to females.
The new American chauvinist pig is a reactionary nut who will do anything to keep up his wantonly wasteful lifestyle, at the expense of someone else's life. He needs that gas guzzling truck to haul his chainsaw, his lawn mower and his snowblower in. It works well to pull his snowmobile, fishing boat, jet ski, and ATVs. Without his wife's SUBehemoth, she has nothing to drive to the box store to buy useless consumer goods made in China or the third world.
It doesn't matter to the New American chauvinist that their President is a liar, as long as he ensures the free flow of petroleum to fuel his wasteful lifestyle. They will even use their religious beliefs to justify the slaughter of indigeonous peoples who stand in the way of their lust for oil consumption.
The cost of this war will borne out by future generations as the expense of stealing and maintaining the dominance of the oil rich region will far out weigh the return. Future generations will have to live with the legacy set forth by the new American chauvinist, that of using force to take what we need to maintain this ridiculous charade of filling the empty spots in our lives with more and more pointless consumer goods.
The new American Chauvinist will ridicule those who stand in the way of their precious crude. Those who protest the blood for oil are bike riding traitors, aligned more with the perceived enemy than the corporations who are stealing his tax money to ensure that they get a little richer providing the chauvinists with the fuel for their addiction to gas. These wasteful fools see no problem with their improvident lifestyle and are unwilling to make the necessary changes that in time they will be forced to accept. They will squander it all away, leaving nothing behind for their children and grandchildren but the ruins and remains of a once great nation.


Jennifer said...

Thanks for commenting on my blog. You are likely correct about the religion thing. I recently saw the movie "The End of Suburbia" about peak oil, check it out, quite excellent.

I hope this was a typo in your post:

"used against those males who rightly felt themselves superior to females." Rightly superior? Huh?

Lew Scannon said...

Boy, you are sharp!
Actually, what I meant they felt rightly superior to females, not that they actually were. Sometimes when I'm on a roll, I'll transpose words and letters like that as I generally don't do a lot of editing (or spell checking) until after I post it, then it's d'oh!
If you are into the peak oil thing, check out this website
Lots of good writing (and therefore reading) there. Thanks for your response!

Lily said...

Lew- I thought it only fair to check out YOUR blogs and intend to drink some coffee here and get up to speed on what you have been doing.
I am trying to work on a local education forum relating to the very things you mentioned- peak oil, the "End of Suburbia" etc. Recently there was a great conference in Philly called "Philly Beyond Oil" that explored the relationships between oil, global domination and the era of resource wars I think we are sliding into.... let me wake up. I'll stop rambling now.