The tectonic plates of energy policy just moved!

Paul Mobbs mobbsey at
Thu Nov 11 11:42:00 GMT 2010

Hash: SHA256


This is probably boring the crap out of people on the list -- shall we make 
this our last exchange? (unless everyone else would like us to continue that 

On Thursday 11 November 2010 00:24:08 Mr Zouk wrote:
> Paul, just exactly who is funding your program?

Me? I'm completely independent, working mostly for community groups and the 
proceeds of my book sales/other writing work. We can get by on less than half 
the average wage in the UK because we live a low impact lifestyle, and 
consequently, I've no need for external funding and all the strings that are 
attached to that. I've complete intellectual freedom.

I found, in the early 90s, that by minimising expenditure, reducing 
consumption and finding ways to meet everyday needs, as far as possible, 
through local producers/groups I was able to avoid the need be part of that 
mainstream system. What was more interesting was that, once I did the research 
and started to highlight how this approach worked more effectively than the 
"green consumerism" that most campaign groups were promoting at the time, they 
wanted nothing to do with me (and one subsequently took legal action against 

So, I live in entirely the opposite state to that you infer.

> I never said we should continue with oil, what i did say is that there are
> countless sources of free energy.

There is no such thing as free energy. All energy comes from somewhere, 
sourcing energy changes the thermodynamic equilibrium, and therefore all 
energy sources create an impact and are subject to physical restrictions.

> but what is wrong with free energy? is it the money factor that bothers
> you? 

No, it's the physics.

Most of the free energy devices defy the Laws of Thermodynamics -- that's 
their flaw. Thermodynamics works at all scales from the atom to the universe, 
and consequently anything that doesn't work within the restrictions of 
thermodynamics cannot "work".

If they can't pass the basic thermodynamic tests, the detail of how they work 
is irrelevant.

> There is no learning, only indoctrination.

I think you're taking Illich far to seriously!

> and yes we know that the Green party is just another arm of all the other
> parties, thats nothing new, or didn't you read what i wrote? 

I'm far to radical to be part of the Green Party. Last time I spoke to the 
Green Party conference, in a session on energy the next morning a group of 
people argued that they could have policies on the issue I raised because 
"people wouldn't vote for us" (although, in the end, they did agree a policy 
- -- but it's not very good).

At heart I'm a Groucho Marxist, I'd never be a part of any group that would 
have me as a member.

> it is you that are disillusioned
> with the marionettes in government, I already know what they are, but you
> seem to think thy're going to listen to you.

"Listening" is the wrong word. They might "hear" but their political 
livelihood prevents them comprehending what it is I'm describing. That makes 
no difference to me. I've been ploughing this same furrow for the last ten 
years and it's political reality that's moved closer to me (e.g., the IEA's 
announcement on 9/11) not the other way around.

I'm a very patient person. That not only helps in having a dialogue with 
people like yourself, but it also means that I'm playing a very "long" game. 
I'm looking at trends that stretch for decades, not just the next business 
cycle or term of office. I know that, in the end, the objective reality of the 
human situation will force them to change.

> What I'm saying is that if you allow yourself to be dictated to by those in
> power and you can't see that they are dictating to you. the same  like
> when people vote. 

No one dictates to me. I serve nobody's agenda except my own conscience.

There is no gap between what I say, what I do an how I live -- they are all 
part of the same system which in turn informs my work and research to develop 
these skills/experiences further. It's a symbiotic process in fact; my work 
reinforces my lifestyle which reinforces my work, and all the time that 
iteration reduces dependency upon the mainstream economic system. Whilst I 
never intended it I have, by circumstance, essentially developed a 
permaculture design for my own lifestyle.

> GreenNet

GreenNet is primarily an Internet service provider, not a campaigning 

> How much is the rental space you guys use? it is charities money, so i
> guess the public has a right to know don't you think? 

Sorry, but I pay them for my Internet services.

I'm not a part of the GreenNet Limited organisation (, although I 
am an **unpaid** director of the GreenNet Educational Trust because of my past 
experience working with community groups, journalists and human rights workers 
around the globe (mostly former Soviet states, Zimbabwe, and the Middle East) 
utilising my specialist skills in low-tech computing and cryptographic 
communications to allow groups to network without direct state surveillance. 
E.g. see:

> I see you are also using trust law, to protect assets and profits.

Nope, the Trust doesn't actively trade at present -- it's there purely in case 
GreenNet are given money to run educational programmes so that we can claim 
the tax back and get more money for projects. There are no profits to protect.

> And you do seem to be adamant to respond to my messages, so what is it
> exactly you are scared of? is it profit margin? 

So did the man receiving help from the 'good Samaritan' question his motives 
and tell him to go away? I offer help freely, there is no charge, and no 
demand. If you ask, I'll shut-up too.

What I find rather sad is that you reduce all of society's problems to "them". 
It doesn't matter what the issue is, if you have a problem then it's "them". 
where do "you" fit into the process? Likewise if someone opposes you then they 
obviously "in it for the money". Within the psychogeography of your existence 
is there no place for simply accepting the reality of events around you rather 
than attribution of these events to the absurd narrative of the stories that 
the human race tells itself to maintain it's un-natural relationship to its 

Want to really get into the real horror story of modern society? Political 
power is just an illusion, maintained by the stories we collectively tell 
ourselves about our society, but which is ultimately a derivative of the 
possession of economic power -- which itself is just a human construct with no 
comparable analog in the natural world. What humans create socially is 
abstract -- only that which we can demonstrate within the natural world in 
general is real. It's by realising and adapting our own lifestyles to accept 
this principle that we'll be able, as a species, to move past the impending 
crisis of industrialisation.

For example, if you're a peasant living on the land in rural China, did the 
credit crunch really mean anything? In contrast if you're a management 
consultant working in an financial centre then it was the most important thing 
in your life. In reality it's just a narrative -- abstract!

There is only one economic reality within the human system -- food. After 
securing food (and, depending upon the climate, shelter) all else is 
negotiable. In fact, the ONLY source of energy that humans depend upon is 
food. All those other energy "sources" power our social constructs -- although 
in terms of our ecological outlook, so much energy is now used in food 
production and supply that an awful lot of people will learn this reality very 
deleteriously if the system goes pop. That's also why, irrespective of the 
value of economic wealth, true economic wealth stems from the working of the 
land, and why in turn the **real** political struggle will be for land rights 
not political power.

There is nothing real except the natural world around us -- and that's the 
primary limitation on what the human species can do. When it's confirmed that 
oil supply has begun the inexorable post-peak decline I think you'll find, led 
be states like the UK and USA, a lot of the structures that you vociferously 
rail against will implode. The modern myths of affluence and wealth is based on 
the maintenance of constant economic growth. By ensuring that most people have 
just a little bit more each year it deflects the attention of society from 
thinking about why a very few receive most of the proceeds. Please note that 
this viewpoint isn't mine -- it's from the writing of economists such as 
Keynes, Schumpeter and Galbraith who enacted this system between the 1930s and 
the 1950. What we are living today is the echo of the fear of the crash of 
1929, but for all their trying they still can't make the system work because 
it ignored the biophysical ties between the human ecosystem and the natural 
environment that our species inhabits.

> Personally I couldn't give a shit what the government
> does, I'm not part of their society. 

You see, we do share some common viewpoints!!


- -- 

"We are not for names, nor men, nor titles of Government,
nor are we for this party nor against the other but we are
for justice and mercy and truth and peace and true freedom,
that these may be exalted in our nation, and that goodness,
righteousness, meekness, temperance, peace and unity with
God, and with one another, that these things may abound."
(Edward Burrough, 1659 - from 'Quaker Faith and Practice')

Paul's book, "Energy Beyond Oil", is out now!
For details see

Read my message board, "Ecolonomics", at:

Paul Mobbs, Mobbs' Environmental Investigations
3 Grosvenor Road, Banbury OX16 5HN, England
tel./fax (+44/0)1295 261864
email - mobbsey at
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