I'm in my 50th year, and in my lifetime I have seen the massive growth of unlimited consumption, packaging, transportation and resource depletion. This was so obviously an unsustainable, untenable and unintelligent way to live, that I have been shocked and surprised at the vast majority of the people who bought into it.
In the West we have stopped being adults, we have reverted (or been reverted if you're a conspiracy theorist who has studied psychology) to childhood, where we don't want to hear bad news, where we only want to play games, amuse ourselves and follow mind-numbing 'entertainment' which includes chat-shows, sports and other inane material. Talk of what is happening politically is practically non-existant amongst the general public. By accident or design (and it hardly matters now which of these is true) discussions of where the energy is going to come from to power all of these non-essential services is never aired - or at least very, very rarely, and certainly not on main-stream television or radio.
This phrase 'energy illiteracy' popped into my head this morning, whilst I was re-picking my tomato seedlings. I now consider growing organic fruit and vegetables to be one of the most important jobs in the world, especially after the nuclear disaster in Japan. Consider all of the other jobs that have been created in the industrialised West, and you will see that most of them can just be blown away in the wind, and they will not matter when it comes to the survival of the human species. Consider, now, the rules and regulations designed to prevent people from having access to good, healthy food, and add to this the natural disasters that can happen unexpectedly and cut off your food and clean water supply, and you will begin to see that knowing how to feed yourself, and those around you, is possibly more important than rocket science.