Comedian Robert Newman may be the best spokesman for Peak Oil out there today judging by this 45 minute performance called The History of Oil (link to Google videos). It's a brilliant blend of stand-up comedy and history lecture covering the world's obsession with oil over the past 100 years.
Do you remember how the reasons given in school for the start of WW I never made any sense? We were taught that it started because someone assassinated Archduke Ferdinand. In Newman's own words, "Nobody could be that popular. " Well, Newman offers the most plausible explanation of what triggered the first World War that I have ever come across. (Hint: oil)
He then proceeds to explain how the wars of 20Th century and this one have all been about the control of oil supplies. The highlight of the performance is his use of a crack dealer analogy to explain how US has kepts its dollar propped up for decades now and how all that will change as nations begin to switch over to the Euro as their oil trading currency. If you get confused by how the Federal Reserve and the Petrodollar work, this is the video for you. The final 10 minutes focus on Peak Oil.
Robert Newman gets to grips with the wars and politics of the last hundred years - but rather than adhering to the history we were fed at school, he places oil centre stage as the cause of all commotion. This innovative history programme is based around Robert Newman's stand-up act and supported by resourceful archive sequences and stills with satirical impersonations of historical figures from Mayan priests to Archduke Ferdinand. Quirky details such as a bicycle powered street lamp on the stage brings home the pertinent question of just how we are going to survive when the world's oil supplies are finally exhausted.
This is a tour de force performance by a very funny and talented man who also happens to understand history better than most history teachers.
Invest 45 minutes to educate yourself.
This is the way history should be taught so that we have the opportunity to learn from it rather than repeat its mistakes. But don't hold your breath.
By the way, streaming was rather spotty with DSL, but if you download it none of the big 3 media players will work with it. If you know something that will play it, let me know.