Summary of James Howard Kunstler’s “Globalisation’s Time Is Up” Within James Howard Kunstler’s article “Globalisation’s Time is Up” (Guardian Weekly, 12-18 August 2005), he goes against Thomas Friedman’s view that “globalisation is here to stay”(254), arguing that globalisation is rather unstable. With the supply of cheap resources and world peace, we have the formula for globalisation, subtract either and we are on a crash course. Kunstler builds on this theory by going over events, which time after time have all lead to the same solution.
The period of 1870-1914 the “first phase of globalisation”(254) is described as the era of coal and steam power. This period brought hope; nations were tied together with booming trade, along with the abundant supplies of resources. The introduction of oil without a doubt would override the power of coal. This was closely followed with serious ramifications for those without oil, the First World War. Kunstler’s formula for globalisation proves to be correct in earlier days. Furthermore, the oil era is slowly approaching its demise.
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It has brought economies greatly dependent on its production power that we no longer see what will come of our “McHousing Estates”(255). The suburban housing along with all other oil dependent arrangements will cease to expand when the global oil production well dries up. “The American Suburban Juggernaut” (255), is Kunstler’s description of how America has misallocated its existence around the oil economy. With this being said he continues to support his theory, the bond of nations is now separating from one another simply to attain control of what oil remains in this world.
The abused usage of the era, and the over usage of its resources has led America through a boom, one that will end with a bust leaving everyone scrambling for what is left. Kunstler ends his argument stating, “the world is about to become a larger place again”(256), we can take from his explanations that he is implying; the breakdown of local communities butchered by large chains, how shopping will simply fade away in the background of life, and the need for cars will be of little to no use. As a result all that had once become in the oil-short era will then restart a cycle known as globalisation.
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