Collapse warns society must adapt to changing environment

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      The trouble with doomsday conspiracy theories is that they are just that: theories. But if the “theories” that Michael Ruppert espouses in Collapse are accurate, humanity is headed for a cliff.

      Watch the trailer for Collapse.

      Ruppert, a Los Angeles police officer turned independent journalist, uses logical arguments based on publicly accessible information to outline how the world is about to change. The result of extensive interviews with Ruppert is a feature documentary by Chris Smith that warns of an impending apocalypse. (The film plays at Vancity Theatre on November 17 and from November 20 to 23.)

      Ruppert states that peak oil—the point at which the planet’s maximum possible rate of petroleum extraction is reached—is upon us. The impact of this milestone could be devastating. Take food as one example: from cultivation to collection to delivery, every stage of modern agriculture requires petroleum.

      “There are 10 calories of hydrocarbon energy in every calorie of food consumed in the industrialized world,” director Smith told the Georgia Straight in a phone interview. Because the primary source of hydrocarbon is crude oil and oil is a finite resource, worldwide change is inevitable.

      Ruppert’s arguments had an effect on those who worked on the project, Smith said.

      He recalled surreal moments during the documentary’s production when he walked in on editing sessions where staff were hearing Ruppert’s words for the first time. “They were having this incredibly devastating experience.”

      Smith said he hopes Collapse will have the same effect on audiences as it did on his staff. Smith said he wants the documentary to serve as a thought-provoking entry into debates on the issues that Ruppert covers.

      “When people first see the film, they think it sounds very radical and incendiary,” Smith said. “But what’s funny is the more you work on the film or you think about the film, it almost seems pedestrian. Of course you can’t consume forever; of course there are consequences to printing money; of course the population expands and there might be ramifications.”

      Some will call the film alarmist, Smith conceded, but if Collapse gets people talking about issues like peak oil and how to deal with such challenges, it can only be a good thing.

      During an estimated 14 hours of interviews conducted over five days, Smith said, Ruppert occasionally succumbed to emotions rooted in an acceptance of inevitable catastrophe. But even he holds some hope for the future, Smith said. “I do think that he believes that human beings can have a positive impact if they focus and work together and they understand what the problems are.” The trouble, Smith continued, is that Ruppert also understands that historically, humans have not done this.

      Early in the film, Ruppert argues that what society needs is Thomas Jefferson’s conviction that people need a revolution every generation in order to preserve their liberties and freedoms. Although he’s speaking of a revolution of the mind, Ruppert warns that blood and violence may have to be a part of this change.

      “We’re many generations overdue for a revolution,” he says.

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      Nov 16, 2009 at 9:29am

      It's too late even for revolution. Those scientific projections for the state of the climate in 2020, 2040, etc., are wildly optimistic.
      Anyone who experienced the blackout in Ontario in 2003, should have an inkling of how flimsy our infrastructure is.


      Nov 16, 2009 at 5:55pm

      Mikey: It's not too late for a revolution. If a 'green totalitarian' government were to run things strictly, we could still prevent the worst and eventually recover. but people would have to give up some petty freedoms, which american mythological culture equates with pure evil.

      Eric Chris

      Nov 16, 2009 at 11:43pm

      On course TransLink operates non-renewable energy diesel buses on our hydro-electric, otherwise, zero emission renewable energy trolley bus routes and we just eat it up when TransLink tells us that it values and practices sustainability ...

      Mike Cantelon

      Nov 17, 2009 at 10:08am

      States aren't infallible, but they're not stupid either: they generally look after their own long-term well-being which is why they persist as dominant institutions. My bet is that rather than not dealing with macro factors like climate change and peak oil they are actually ramping up to deal with them using a strategy they aren't sharing. And there's likely a reason they're not sharing it.

      Travis Lupick

      Nov 17, 2009 at 11:44am

      A couple of stories making headlines this week. Related to the issues raised by Michael Ruppert in <em>Collapse</em>.

      <a href=" oil figures were distorted by US pressure, says whistleblower</a> (Nov 9, 2009,
      <a href=" temperatures will rise 6C by end of century, say scientists</a> (Nov 17, 2009,


      Nov 17, 2009 at 5:03pm

      Scary movie!

      Judy Cross

      Nov 20, 2009 at 10:56am

      Man-made climate change is now exposed as a total fraud .

      Coal can be turned into a liquid fuel which we could use if and when petroleum is exhausted . Coal used that way gives us at least 100 years until we come up with new and better energy sources.

      Like the swine flu, climate change and peak oil are scary stories the globalists use to keep us in fear and render us willing to trade away our rights while they profit from the confusion generated by the uproar.


      Nov 20, 2009 at 8:06pm

      Mr Lupick's library seems to conveniently forget anything that is not alarmist. May I suggest he should include the newly released emails HADcrugate showing how public paid scientists have conspired to silence other authors, rig the peer review system to their advantage, boycott scientific journals that would publish other scientists' papers, refuse and coordinate the stonewalling of public data etc...
      As for the guardian references... Monbiot's house, and those modelling stuff here is the crux: all IPCC models are supposed to be validated by emulating the HADCRUT surface temperature curve, whose database is being stonewalled by the poor scientist Phil Jones who just received over 13.7 million british pounds ($23 million USD) of research grants since 1990 from BIG Taxman UK... So no indenpendent verification of HADcrut is the key to the Copenhagen "science" and the Corinne le Quere from... yes you got it, Hadley centre whose boss is, yes you got it Phil Jones... so her 6 degres... not under the arm imo! But yes, Mr Lupick keep going and denouncing Big Oil: they are funding the ISEEE of University of Calgary... ooops, that's the good guys, the US Dr Keith and his little CO2 youtube video ad in the Globe and Mail, the journalists activists invited to speak about climate change etc... That'sthe good funding by Big Oil isn't it? LOL that one you won't denounce...

      unbelievable ...

      Nov 21, 2009 at 12:22am

      Judy, do you smoke lots of pot in your spare time? Is that link for the National Enquirer? It sure looks like it.

      Judy Cross

      Nov 21, 2009 at 2:31pm

      It's the the Examiner. Copyright © 2009 Clarity Digital Group LLC d/b/a
      But should you like stories from a more establishment point of view, I give you:
      "In several of the emails, climate researchers discussed how to arrange for favorable reviewers for papers they planned to publish in scientific journals. At the same time, climate researchers at times appeared to pressure scientific journals not to publish research by other scientists whose findings they disagreed with."