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Assessing The Energy Crisis Of Society: Joining The Consumption Of Oil With Inequality Leading To The Downfall Of Civilization

2314 words - 10 pages

Viggo Mortensen once said, “further devastation of the air, land and sea is obviously a very real possibility, unless the attitudes of politicians and all who irresponsibly exploit our natural resources change significantly in the very near future and all collaborate and sacrifice for the good of the planet” (Mortensen). Capitalism is producing capital, building the basis of values, creating inequality between low wage labourers and high earning capitalists (Newman, 2013). This relates to Karl Marx’s conflict theory between the bourgeoisie and proletariat by exploiting the market for private wealth gain often creating social problems (Tepperman & Curtis, 2011, pp. 22,320). A social problem is a concern that often requires the surrounding public to resolve by collaborative resolution (Tepperman & Curtis, 2011, p. 3). This paper will analyze oil as a lucrative industry that our global society has come to rely on (Yetiv & Fowler, 2011) and the need for energy is rapidly increasing (Shelley, 2005). Oil is a non-replenishing resource that enables the upper class to mass produce commodities, creating a sense of high culture that Thorstein Veblen has theorized as conspicuous consumption or status symbols to portray wealth, such as automobile production by privately owned corporations (Schor, 2007; Tepperman, Albanese, & Curtis, 2014, p. 117; Newman, 2013). This paper will focus on the sustainability of society by examining the need to change current policy of oil production. The first portion of this paper will focus on the development of oil production followed by social problems caused by oil. The trailing portion will discuss the grim future if action is not taken, ending with policy solutions. An examination of oil consumption by its development, resulting issues, nearing concerns described in the film A Crude Awakening: The Oil Crash and other sources will authenticate the advancing inevitability of the downfall of society.
As mechanization of technology began to rapidly take off, so did the reliance on oil to manufacture products, especially in the twentieth century (Owen, Inderwildi, & King, 2010). In the film A Crude Awakening: The Oil Crash, Alberto Quiros Corradi states that is early as 1914, Venezuela was the largest global exporter of oil, because of its massive oil reserves (Gelpke & McCormack, 2006). International trade in foreign policy was initiated not only to fuel America’s early addiction to oil, but to guard the exploitation of people by Saudi Arabian leaders, causing Middle Eastern labour wages to decrease to a current average of $6000 annually (Gelpke & McCormack, 2006). The United States was the biggest producer of oil until approximately the 1950s (Gelpke & McCormack, 2006). Sherry Phillips from the film states that in 1930, McCamey Texas was a booming community due to its ability to refine large amounts of oil that appeared inexhaustible until extraction became unprofitable to wealthy oil companies, devastating local...

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