March 12, 2008

Are You Free Yet?

Shortly before the 230th anniversary of Independence Day, the Sacramento News & Review printed a letter describing my reaction to a famous physicist from Caltech, sponsored by the UCD Oil Forum at a symposium where he said "Civilization as we know it will come to an end sometime in this century, when the fuel runs out." (

Dear Editor,

Does ancient Greece suffice to disprove this prejudice? How about the Amish? Or have we only become civilized, if that's what we are, by acquiring the appropriate set of labor-saving, energy-consuming appliances? I can see how much labor we have saved by the amount of leisure we enjoy.

Professor Famous Physicist thinks that nuclear power can help us "bridge" the gap between oil and the holy grail of the perfect fuel. I say why wait? Since we will have to depend on the perfect fuel eventually, we might as well start using it now.

You are undoubtedly surprised to hear that it already exists. But you have probably already seen it in action without recognizing it. It's called No-Fuel.

The potential of No-Fuel may seem insignificant, but that is actually the source of its promise and power. The benefits of not using fuel are virtually unlimited, and include not driving to work, not buying packaged preserved foods that are highly processed and trucked long distances, not needing to go to the gym because you do garden-yoga most days, not worrying about whether someone is breaking into your house or abusing your kid while you're all at the office, not enduring airport security, not needing to make so much money, and not using leafblowers.

Of course, everybody's different, so the best ways to use No-Fuel will vary among individuals.

As addictive fuel use is reduced in one's personal life, space appears for other more wholesome activities, such as breathing fresh air, biking or riding a pony-cart to the store, cooking locally-grown healthy food for friends and family, relearning traditional crafts and trades, raising your own children, and minimizing the taxes owed to a government that is using most of them to buy weapons to protect our oil addiction.

Some say Chevron fuels your freedom. I say only No-Fuel can make us truly free. So on Independence Day, try not using any fossil energy. Increase your freedom from fossil fuel addiction one day at a time. And don't let the inevitable relapses derail your commitment to traditional ways and an economy based on community well-being rather than corporate tissue-paper profits.

(Note: The version above differs slightly from the printed version at 

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