Matt Taibbi famously covered this sort of thing, but since Thomas Friedman is the Milton of infelicity, there is never too much scholarship to go around:
What’s unfolding in the Arab world today is the mother of all wake-up calls. And what the voice on the other end of the line is telling us is clear as a bell:Why doesn't the wake up call just tell us to end our addiction to oil? Why is the wake-up call speaking in fucking code?
“America, you have built your house at the foot of a volcano. That volcano is now spewing lava from different cracks and is rumbling like it’s going to blow. Move your house!” In this case, “move your house” means “end your addiction to oil.”