Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
globalisation as we know it is dependent on cheapish oil

I must disagree with this. Globalization is dependent not on cheapish oil, but on the popular support for free trade, and governments removing import quotas, tarifss or outright trade bans. We had (and currently have) globalization when trade was free but oil dear (or irrelevant, as ships ran on wind or coal). We did not have globalization when trade was unfree but oil cheap. Globalization is to a much greater degree about politics and policy, than it is about energy costs.

It is about energy and technology too, but not the way most people might think. The invention of the container is a much greater force for globalization than $150 oil will ever be against it. This is because globalization is about free trade on the high seas, and oil prices or not, it's still dead cheap to transport containers on these huge ships. Local markets served by trucks might make some products very dear indeed, while transoceanic trade is still abundant.

Peak oil is not an energy crisis. It is a liquid fuel crisis.

by Starvid on Tue Mar 29th, 2011 at 04:09:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
We had (and currently have) globalization when trade was free but oil dear (or irrelevant, as ships ran on wind or coal).

yes, that's why i said 'as we know it'.

until the spice trade, globalisation was rational. even spices served to relieve culinary boredom and preserve foods longer.

today's globalisation is different, 2000 mile lettuces are irrational, though there are still some who'd disagree, pointing to text and numbers to back them up.

it's the old problem of trusting the rational intellect too much. here be dragons.

the japanese are wizards at added value, more cunning craftsmen are impossible to find, but if you base your global wealth capture on other countries' raw materials and your IP, sooner or later that tower's going to fall, as resources are finite, and technology jumps borders. it's amazing, ~and a testament to their amazing creativity~ that their economy is 3rd on earth, considering their size and physical resource deficiency.

globalisation used to be about meeting real needs intelligently, entirely rational. my valley grows better spuds, yours grows better rutabagas, we trade, win-win.

pretty much all down hill from there...


'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Wed Mar 30th, 2011 at 02:31:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]


Occasional Series