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Haitian woman in Fort Dimanche making sun-dried dirt and butter biscuits
Haitian woman in Fort Dimanche making sun-dried 'biscuits' the key ingredients of which are butter, salt, water and dirt. Development of biofuel-based economy would help alleviate such destitution, argues Robert Zubrin. Photo credit: Ruth Fremson, New York Times.

Connecting the Oily Dots of the Economic Meltdown

Dr. Robert Zubrin's emotive case for promoting the immediate adaptation of a global open fuels standard.

By EV World

Dr. Robert Zubrin, the president and CEO of Pioneer Astronautics is best known for his theoretical work on colonizing Mars, where he devised a way to make rocket fuel from the Red Planet's own resources.

But of late, and back here on Planet Earth, he's taken a even keener interest in the connection between gyrating oil prices, global poverty and the current economic meltdown. And while his work on Mars may seem to have little relevance to the desperate economic conditions from Haiti to Zimbabwe -- much less a connection to electric vehicles -- as you'll learn from the exclusive EV World video below, recorded in Chicago October 25, 2008 at the Set America Free conference, the dots that link them are all quite tangible.

It is Zubrin's thesis that OPEC, and the Saudis in particular, are out to destroy the West economically, not by using crude weapons of mass destruction, but through the largest transfer of wealth in the history of the planet. Motivated by Wahabi fundamentalism and its radical intolerance of even its fellow religionists, i.e. Shiites, the ultimate political goal is a worldwide Islamic caliphate ruled, presumably by archly conservative Moslem clerics in the Middle East. And oil -- the black blood that runs 90 percent of the vehicles in the world, as well as its ships and planes -- is the tool of choice. In a self-reinforcing feedback loop, terrorism breeds fear and economic instability, which drives greed and the price of oil.

The result is wild fluctuations in the price of petroleum that on the one hand fattens oil producer coffers -- this year America's oil bill will be more than the United States defense budget -- when they're high and strangle alternative fuel technologies when they're low.

The shift to biofuels produced by the poorer, agriculturally-based nations of the world will stop the Wahabists in their tracks, Zubrin argues, while providing a much needed economic boost to the world's poor. Instead of the world's wealth increasingly being concentrated in the hands of a tiny cartel of theocrats and autocrats, it would provide jobs and income where it's needed most, and in turn would help dry up the swamp of poverty that causes the poor to turn to radical religious dogmas. It would, he contends, foster creativity instead of oppression.

Zubrin's presentation slides are available on his Energy Victory web site. His book, by the same name, is also available on Amazon.com.

Times Article Viewed: 7678
Published: 26-Oct-2008

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