How does it feel knowing buying gasoline supports Middle East Shiekdoms?

Many people are (rightfully) upset about the Middle Eastern countries and their supposed hatred of the United States.  I kind of think that they’re rightfully upset at decades of Western (America and Europe) meddling in Middle East politics, manipulating the game to preserve access to Oil.  And that this meddling creates “blowback”, meaning hatred and even attacks (terrorism) as a kind of revenge.  In any case the situation leaves many people in the US and Europe thinking of the Middle East Sheik’s as some kind of enemy, and looking for ways to erode their power.  And of course the power those Sheikdom’s have over the West (US and Europe) is oil supplies.

Without oil (and other fossil fuels) the Western Paradigm would fall apart.  Our cars, trucks, airplanes, the lightbulbs, refrigerators, and everything else, all that runs on energy sources that primarily are fossil fuels.

To some degree gasoline purchases end up lining the coffers of Middle East Sheikdom’s.  Therefore, to some degree, Oil and gasoline purchases produce terrorism by the Middle East directed at the West.

In the mind of many, gasoline purchases feeds our enemies.

While the U.S.’s primary direct supplier is Venezuela – the Oil market is somewhat open.  America’s oil purchases help to set the worldwide oil prices, indirectly affecting the profitability of every country which sells oil.  Maybe the U.S. doesn’t directly buy much Oil from the Middle East, but the Middle East is one of the suppliers to the market from which the U.S. buys oil.

Years ago I noticed that while driving (back when I still owned a gasoline powered car) I’d feel “dirty”.  Anytime I operated a different sort of vehicle, I didn’t feel dirty.  Now that I own an electric car, I feel completely clean.  At stop-lights where I used to feel anxious over the gasoline being burned, I simply relax and wait for the light to turn.

Part of the anxiety came from knowing my gasoline purchases fed the whole ugly mess in the Middle East.

I’ve done a LOT of study about the Iraq War and am 100% certain of these facts

The publicly given story was a big steaming pile of lies – Colin Powell lied to the United Nations, and the rest of the Bush Administration lied, lied, and lied some more.
There were no WMD in Iraq, and Iraq was not supporting Al Qaeda – they hated each other
Instead, the Iraq War was solely about ensuring access for Western Oil Companies to the Oil in Iraq, so that the Western paradigm of burning Fossil Fuels can keep on rolling

There are lots more things about Oil and Gasoline to feel “dirty” over, but this specific issue looms big in my mind.  America, I think, is causing a lot of the unrest in the Middle East, either directly or indirectly.  We have been doing this for decades – for example the Shah of Iran (who was overthrown in the late 1970’s in events that led to the attack on the American Embassy in Iran) was installed by a CIA backed Coup that overthrew a democratically elected government.

How much of the bloodshed and wars and pain and suffering in the Middle East results from America’s meddling in their affairs?

It was the Carter Doctrine that free access to oil supplies is in the U.S. National Interest.  The U.S. has a tendency to be ready to go to War to protect what it deems to be in our National Interest.

We all must remember this today because, as I reported recently, it is in the U.S. National Interest for Europe to develop natural gas sources other than Russia’s natural gas.  Why is President Obama making such a big stink over Ukraine?  It’s because of fossil fuel supplies, and Russia’s plan to use its position as the worlds largest Natural Gas supplier to hold a dominance position over Europe.

Fossil Oil purchases feed a number of negatives in the world.  Such as:

  • The pattern of repressive dictatorship governments in oil supplying countries
  • Western meddling in the politics of oil supplying countries – because, primarily, the countries who are the biggest users of fossil oil have the smallest fossil oil supplies (“how did our oil get under their sand?”)
  • Climate change – negative environmental effects – the story between those two is huge and enormous
  • Peak Oil – the problem we collectively are heading to in a mad rush to worldwide turmoil unless we collectively switch to other energy sources

Every time we spend money we vote for one kind of world or another.  When we shop at Walmart (for example) we’re voting for cheap crap stuff primarily made in China.  When we buy gasoline we’re voting for that whole pattern I just outlined.

Those of us who still buy gasoline are responsible for feeding the system that produces those negative effects.  It’s not just the Sheik’s of the Middle East, it’s the various oil spills, oil train explosions, and daily poisoning of the atmosphere, and the ever-increasing quantity of carbon pollution in the atmosphere.

It’s the rising sea levels, the animal and plant species going extinct every day, it’s the oceans dying.

There are zillions of reasons to stop using fossil fuels, oil, gasoline, natural gas, etc.  If it’s the Middle East Sheikdom’s that gets someone moving towards freeing themselves from Oil, then so be it.  Please, though, realize that the picture is so much bigger than that.  I say the same to the people who are focused on carbon pollution.  Yes, that aspect of fossil fuel consumption is wrecking the climate and we’re going to be seeing some horrendous weather over the next few decades.  But that’s only a part of the whole picture about why we need to quit using fossil fuels.

About David Herron

David Herron is a writer and software engineer living in Silicon Valley. He primarily writes about electric vehicles, clean energy systems, climate change, peak oil and related issues. When not writing he indulges in software projects and is sometimes employed as a software engineer. David has written for sites like PlugInCars and TorqueNews, and worked for companies like Sun Microsystems and Yahoo.

About David Herron

David Herron is a writer and software engineer living in Silicon Valley. He primarily writes about electric vehicles, clean energy systems, climate change, peak oil and related issues. When not writing he indulges in software projects and is sometimes employed as a software engineer. David has written for sites like PlugInCars and TorqueNews, and worked for companies like Sun Microsystems and Yahoo.

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