DrumBeat: October 26, 2007

Oil bigger threat than climate change in 10 years

Rising oil prices are a bigger threat to the world economy than climate change in the next 10 years - that was the surprising verdict of company executives from carbon trading, fuel cell, oil exploration and solar power firms who attended the Reuters Smaller Companies Forum.

But climate change is likely to have a greater effect on the global economy over a 50-year timespan, according to those executives from old and new energy companies.

How secure are Middle East oil supplies?

High oil prices, threats of terrorist attacks, instability in many oil-exporting countries and the rise in so-called ‘oil nationalism’ have raised serious concerns about the security of oil supplies.

Peak Oil Passnotes: Fractured Markets

Another week, another record. As you will no doubt have seen, the Nymex crude oil price for delivery to Cushing jumped to more than $92 per barrel this week. We are now being told that this figure is near the “inflation-adjusted” price for an all-time high. Yet we are also told there is little worry for the economy. We are told that modern economies do not react in the same way as before; we are told to rest easy.

This is not the case - it is not accurate. As readers of this column note, there is little love lost here for the current economic system and its charlatanesque moniker of “free markets.” The markets are most certainly not free and quite often they are hardly markets. Especially in the United States and Europe.

GM tests fuel cell cars in real world

Beginning early next year, General Motors will be lending 100 Chevrolet Equinox Fuel Cell Vehicles to "everyday" American families as well as to a few celebrities and politicians.

Besides the public relations value - hence the celebrities and politicians - GM will also be gathering feedback on how people use the vehicles, how easy they find fueling them, and how they like driving them day-to-day.

Boone ‘Peak Oil’ Call Supported, But Asset Class Leery

Boone may be right.

The point of maximum oil production known as “Peak Oil” is upon us, said Energy Watch Group, a think tank based in Germany.

According to the Peak Oil hypothesis, oil production worldwide will plummet in the wake of Peak Oil.

...Don Paul, chief technology officer of massive energy conglomerate Chevron Corp., called the Peak Oil hypothesis “probably real” and admitted the oil supply will in all likelihood continue to dwindle—though he shrugged off the potential for catastrophe, noting the ascent of alternative energy.

But it was hedge-fund magnate T. Boone Pickens who brought the Peak Oil issue into focus last week with his prediction that oil would hit $100 a barrel.

Here comes $100 oil, and $3 gas

With oil prices setting records over $90 a barrel and $100 looking ever more likely, experts say there's a good chance drivers will see $3 gasoline before the end of the year.

"Three dollar gasoline in this market is unavoidable," said Stephen Schork, publisher of the industry newsletter the Schork Report. "At this rate, we're going to see $4 a gallon."

U.S. Strategy With Iran and OPEC to Push Oil Above $100

In the coming months, crude oil prices will be heading above $100 per barrel if all speculations are coming true about increased global demand, lower stocks worldwide and a Middle East conflict with Iran. If OPEC next month at its Saudi Arabia summit will not present a 1.5 million to 2 million bpd production increase, the market should be expecting record price levels without any doubt. Al Badri’s comments have come after the U.S. Secretary of Energy Samuel Bodman urged the oil cartel to increase its production volumes to counter a too-tight global supply and demand market. Even though OPEC has repeatedly claimed not to have set its own target price for crude oil, analysts are increasingly indicating that the oil cartel has set a minimum price level of $60 per barrel, while the upper range is totally in the open. Some hardliners in OPEC, including Iran and Venezuela, are not at all unhappy with the current price developments.

Oil CEO Calls for Energy Security Plan

The U.S. risks losing its competitive edge in a global economy if it does not soon address the country's energy needs, climate change and foreign policy in a comprehensive way, the chief executive of Marathon Oil said Friday.

Research on a dire problem - carbon capture - gets going

"Without carbon capture and sequestration, we are all toast."

Jiang Lin, a scientist with the China Sustainable Energy Program with Lawrence Berkeley Lab, issued that gloomy proclamation earlier this week and it's a fitting description of the current world situation when it comes to global warming. To make it worse, I asked Lin about how the world is responding to the challenge. Not well.

Trolley, jitney system MCRS meeting topic

Richard Jergensen adds, "but once in place the trolley and jitney system would allow them to park their cars after they come down the hill and then run errands around town without increasing street traffic or pollution in the valley. "Residents in town could literally garage their cars except for trips out of the area by using the Little Lake Trolley and jitneys."

"For three years Willits Economic LocaLization (WELL) has been informing the community about peak oil concerns and the need for local sustainability," Smith notes. "MCRS is now spearheading an effort to get sustainable transportation in town.

Alberta royalty grab stuns oil industry

Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach infuriated the province's oil industry Thursday with surprisingly aggressive plans to take more money from the energy business, but the increases are less than a government-commissioned panel recommended last month.

The government said that under the new regime, money collected from the energy business could be 20 per cent higher in 2010 than forecast, potentially bringing an additional $1.4-billion to the treasury. That figure is nearly half a billion dollars less than the expert review panel wanted.

Is Alberta out of step with the world?

OTTAWA — You would think from the anguished cries of the oil companies that the Alberta government's decision to increase royalties was a bolt from the blue.

Far from it.

How California reaped its firestorm

Cities such as Tucson, Arizona, are built in a desert, where golf courses, lawns and swimming pools guzzle up precious water supplies, fed largely from the Colorado River. Unfortunately that river also supplies 30 million people across seven states and Mexico, including cities such as Los Angeles and Phoenix, and it is fast running low on water. The Colorado has been in drought for more than a decade and is flowing less than during the Dust Bowl years in the 1930s. The river’s water management now relies mostly on prayer. “Nature never intended to support this many people here,” said David Nahai, president of the Los Angeles water and power commissioners.

Different natural disaster, same risky human habits

But one thing that the wildfires share with Katrina is that both natural disasters were made worse by the propensity of people to build homes in high-risk areas. Katrina's economic impact was magnified by development along the vulnerable Gulf Coast. Similarly, the wildfires have been particularly brutal in newly developed communities in fire-prone scrublands and dry pine forests.

Diesel shortage hits Victorian ambulances

Rural Ambulance Victoria says a shortage of diesel caused two of its ambulances to almost ran out of fuel this week.

Low supplies forced ambulance crews to abandon some vehicles in Swan Hill and Morwell this week, and replace them with others.

Crude Realities: Oil Production and Politics

You probably use oil in one way or another every day of your life: powering your car, heating your house and even manufacturing all the plastic around you. It has also been a source of war, made millions for some and ruined the lives of others. Here is a look at some major oil infrastructure and the conflicts surrounding the black gold.

'This is like a highway with no cops and no speed limit'

But something funny is going on now. It appears increasingly obvious that oil prices are being pushed into the stratosphere by speculators in a lightly regulated global trading market that has grown by leaps and bounds.

Traditional supply-and-demand factors can't explain the price jump. There's no shortage of oil or gasoline, nor major supply disruptions. World oil demand has stabilized at about 85 million barrels a day.

Mexico probes fatal oil rig crash

Mexican President Felipe Calderon has ordered an inquiry after an accident on an offshore oil platform in the Gulf of Mexico left at least 19 people dead.

Huge waves knocked the platform onto its side and into a drilling rig, setting off gas and oil leaks.

Desperate workers scrambled into life rafts to escape.

Pemex says two U.S. deepwater fields may leech Mexican oil

Two deepwater oil fields under development in U.S. Gulf waters may cause Mexican oil to leak into wells on the other side of the maritime border, said the head of Mexican state oil firm Petroleos Mexicanos on Thursday.

While the U.S. is busy developing deepwater oil reservoirs in up to 10,000 feet of water, Mexico is watching from the bleachers. Pemex, as the state firm is known, currently lacks the technology to drill deeper than 3,000 feet and is constitutionally prohibited from teaming up with outside firms who can.

Nuclear power isn't the answer

There's again a move to "revive" nuclear power. Every decade or so those with a vested interest in this deadly dangerous technology have sought to get the public to swallow the nuclear pill — and it's happening again.

India: The Myth Of Free Nuclear Energy

THE Congress and its spokespersons have been on overdrive selling a number of myths about the benefits of the India-US Nuclear Deal. Foremost in that has been that of a mythical nuclear bus, which if we do not hop on right now, will leave us in permanent electricity deficit. The bus apparently carries free nuclear energy; all we need to do to tap into this free source of energy is hop on to the bus. In this spin, it is this intransigent Left, stuck in a time warp, which is causing India to miss the bus. The media has been lapping up this vision of free nuclear energy, without any application of either mind or checking up on the facts of nuclear energy. Given the wide-spread credence that the myths about nuclear energy are being given, we are now forced to spend some of our energy on de-constructing these myths.

Arguments on Sustainable Oil Supply Gone Haywire

In the meantime, Matthew Simmons, having made a name for him in projecting the imminent end of oil era, is back in trade suggesting Saudi Aramco may not hit its oil production goals.

...The current Simmons' diatribe is despite the fact that Aramco is boosting spending on projects to raise its capacity from 11.3 million barrels to 12.5 million bpd by 2009. Riyadh will raise output to 9 million bpd from around 8.7 million now, under OPEC's new ceiling effective Nov. 1. Other Gulf oil producers have ambitious programs too. Oil and natural gas producers elsewhere are also pouring money into oilfield services to jack up production declines from fields in the North Sea and Mexico.

Oil Price To Hit US$100; One Thing That Could Cause a Correction

“It’s not a question of when we’ll hit US$100 but how quickly,” Nauman Barakat tells Bloomberg. Barakat, the senior vice president of global energy futures at Macquarie Futures USA Inc. was not talking about Macquarie Bank’s share price. He was talking about oil. “There are no bearish factors in the market right now.”


BP axes jobs as BNP proved right on Peak Oil

Further evidence that peak oil is a reality comes today from one of the world’s energy giants as falling production and refinery shutdowns are blamed for a 45% plunge in quarterly profits at BP.

John Michael Greer: The age of salvage societies

We may attempt to build any future we happen to like, but unless the earth’s remaining stock of natural resources provides the raw material that the future in question requires, we’ll find sooner or later that we’re out of luck. Furthermore, even if the future we have in mind can be made to work within the hard limits of ecological reality, the future we want will once again turn out to be a pipe dream if another form of society or economy does the same thing more effectively.

Should Scientists Embrace Economic Growth?

The assumption of continuous economic growth lurks behind most scientific endeavors. Should scientists embrace this growth which is often presented as a panacea for the relief of poverty, the stability of society and even the improvement of the environment? Or is unbridled growth increasingly undermining these important aims?

Saudi King Tries to Grow Modern Ideas in Desert

On a marshy peninsula 50 miles from this Red Sea port, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia is staking $12.5 billion on a gargantuan bid to catch up with the West in science and technology.

GE hopes to cut mercury in "green" light bulbs

General Electric Co is working to cut the amount of mercury in energy-saving fluorescent lightbulbs which have soared in popularity.

Beck falsely claimed "the globe was the hottest" in 1934 -- it was actually 2005

Glenn Beck declared that "the globe was the hottest" in 1934; in fact, according to NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies, the hottest year on Earth was actually 2005, and 1934 -- now designated the hottest year on record in the U.S. after a revision in climate data -- does not even rank among the globe's five warmest years. Beck also suggested that the statistic "was, I believe, intentionally distorted by the guy the left holds up as the scientist on global warming," an apparent reference to GISS director James Hansen. In August, the GISS revised historical climate data because "the monthly more-or-less-automatic updates of our global temperature analysis had a flaw in the U.S. data."

No to coal

Before approving a costly and irreversible program to build a new generation of coal-fired power plants, Texas officials should carefully study the statements of James Hansen. He's the director of the New York City-based NASA Institute for Space Studies and one of the first scientists to speak out on the threat of global warming caused by man-made greenhouse gases.

Oil price hits record-high 92 dollars in New York

World oil prices surged to historic highs Friday, breaching 92 dollars for the first time in New York on rising tension in crude-rich Iran and tight US energy supplies, analysts said.

"Now that oil is in the 90s, it is much easier to reach 100 dollars. Anything can happen in this market," Astmax fund manager Tetsu Emori said.

New York's main futures contract, light sweet crude for delivery in December, soared to a record-high 92.22 dollars per barrel.

A slap in the face for Big Oil

Premier Ed Stelmach rolled out a new deal yesterday on oil and gas development, the mainstay of his economy and Canada's biggest spender, that is sure to deflate a phenomenal boom and redefine the province's image.

In Calgary, the mood was somber among big players and small. The new terms reinforce the message that even in the country's top oil-producing province, this is a new anti-oil industry era.

What now for the oil industry?

Some 350 BP staff are now facing the axe, the majority in Aberdeen.

At a time when oil prices are soaring, we might wonder why a cull should be needed.

BP's argument is simple - to restore profit and viability.

6 oil workers kidnapped in Nigeria

Gunmen in speedboats attacked an oil vessel off the coast of Nigeria at dawn Friday and kidnapped six workers, Italian energy giant Eni SpA said.

'Food miles' soared by 31% in a year, study reveals

Almost a third more food was flown into Britain last year than in 2005, embarrassing the Government which has promised to slash the pollution and congestion from "food miles".

Not an environment scare story

A landmark assessment by the UN of the state of the world's environment paints the bleakest picture yet of our planet's well-being. The warning is stark: humanity's future is at risk unless urgent action is taken. Over the past 20 years, almost every index of the planet's health has worsened. At the same time, personal wealth in the richest countries has grown by a third.

White House defends 'health benefits' of climate change

The White House on Thursday defended its prediction that climate change would bring some "health benefits" to humans, a forecast unlikely to endear it to critics of the US environmental record.

Climate change seen hurting poor regions

Latin America and other poor regions of the world will bear the brunt of climate change, a top official from the organization that shared this year's Nobel Peace Prize said Thursday.

Reading the previous thread, "You might have heard that CLZ07 went through $90 today..." makes me wonder.

What if KSA has decided that Gee Dubyah and associates aren't their friends anymore? Given their culture, I've always thought that Condi isn't someone they would pay much attention to. While they were clearly happy to see Saddam neutralized and they are worried that Iran might win in Iraq, I doubt that they would be interested in a U.S. war with Iran. Maybe they've decided to pull the plug on the neocons. If the price of oil stays high thru the election, Joe Sixpack and Billy FourWheeler (I like that one) will be in a hanging mood and the Repuglicans will find themselves buried in a landslide. I'm afraid that we are in for an interesting year until next November. Just a thought....

E. Swanson

As long as gasoline stays stable they'll get a free ride on the dollar having tanked because the electorate isn't paying attention to the exchange rates - yet. Put the dollar back where it was a year ago and recalculate. Maybe it's time to present the oil price in a basket of currencies to give a more accurate picture of what's really happening. As I see it, oil is really about $65 and the dollar tanked, but that's never on the news.

Petrosaurus- whereas you may have a valid point in your reflections –

(full sarcanol-alert issued, with a tad of moral-lesson)
- I from my neck of the woods believe there is “a divine finger” pointing at the the most thoughtless crowd among us earthlings – namely the American-earthlings and in particular their leaders and voters - and non-voters.. hey that actually make up all Americans..

“The divine finger” simply zooms and beams the main-cost-change at the $-users who are the very worst among them energy_may_run_out- AND climate_may_cause_damage -Deniers .. their way of understanding natural recourses and their limitations is simply not permitted by “the finger”, or should I say lack of understanding .. as in NONE at all -

The Republicans are already giving up the White House and they may have to hand over a supermajority in both the House and Senate. This is the national mood before the ARM scam unwinds next spring.

Its like a domestic dispute where both parties are bloodied when the police cars arrive. Someone is going to have some consequences and its just a question of whether the neocon/disloyal Christian Right shadow coup moves forward or the 75%+ of the population who don't agree have a nice, juicy housecleaning.

I'm personally in favor of ejecting a whole bunch of Republicans, investigating, prosecuting, and incarcerating some more, and shipping those who've earned it off to the Hague for a war crimes tribunal. This attitude of desiring the rule of the law to take its course makes me into things like a phony American and a terrorist sympathizer, one who hates our freedoms.

Oh, and along with the executive and legislative branch problems I really want someone to pull the plug on the right wing noise machine, starting with Bill O'Reilly, who should be sentenced to 84 days of scrubbing toilets at Fort Bragg as an apology for slandering those Rangers who were executed by the SS on December 17th, 1944.


this assumes Democrats actually get their act together and take advantage of this - i am not convinced they won't snatch defeat from the jaws of victory
All these memories will be lost in time
like tears in rain

Someone called 'em DemocRats and I think I'm gonna start using that myself.

I am personally more interested in portions of the Progressive agenda, but there is much not to love there. There is simply no use for this radical feminist nonsense - they are the DemocRats' moral equivalent of the disloyal Christian Right and we'll have to watch them almost as closely. I could not care less what two adult men want to do in their own home but the gay rights focus concerns me - if that carries through I'd like to see it come through as the right to life, liberty, and property for all, with their concerns being addressed as a byproduct rather than a focus.

What is good about the DemocRats is the strong probability that single payer health care will come to pass and the foolish bankruptcy bill will be rolled back. These two things greatly constrain the creativity of the American people at a time when we need to take risks and try new things as we adapt to peak oil. They are also far more likely to make the correct moves for the environment and I look forward to again having a reality based foreign policy for our country.

The Republicans are just laughable. I'd much rather stick around and correct the DemocRats' confusion regarding the second amendment than have to stand over the Republicans watching each and every thing they do with my fingers crossed they'll listen to the 3/4ths of us who aren't religious fanatics. Bush has totally and completely ruined the Republican franchise and I really expect the party to splinter and die, leaving a radical Christian bit and the remainder will cleave to the center, perhaps later causing a split in the DemocRatic party with their radicals going their own way.

The part people don't realize is that the DemocRats are owned by the same interests as the NeoCons and there would be no change whatsoever in foreign policy.

The only change would be a ruinous wealth transfer to illegals, a sure one way ticket to Zimbabwe.

People didn't vote for Perot then and will not vote for Ron Paul in enough numbers now.

But he is the only hope for us.

You should spend a little less time listening to Rush Limbaugh and a little more time talking with your neighbors. The only ruinous wealth transfer we've seen in this country is the Bush war funded by tax cuts(!) and the privatize and loot dance they do so well.

And if you think foreign policy wouldn't be different you're really not paying attention.

There's plenty of room for debate about illegals, ruinous wealth transfer, etc. But one thing I feel pretty confident in saying is that Rush Limbaugh - a big cheerleader for the Iraq war - isn't supporting Ron Paul for president.

I have a quite wide range of friends, associates and hang arounds and none of them is really wealthy. Anything from small business owners to professionals and blue collar craftsmen.

Out of several hundred people only two are left wing, and they both are in CA. They are entertaining up to a point.

Many would like to see different conservative leadership though, so to that extent we agree.

Hang around long enough and you might just see the Hillabeast bomb Iran while we are laying on a South American beach with an umbrella drink watching the girls.

See, I actually hope you can convince a bunch of people to try it your way, we don't want the beach to be crowded.

The South Americans will be shooting at you because of how they suffered under our attempts to impose "free enterprise" on them the last 20 years. That's what you get for thinking that your right-wing friends aren't wealthy when they make 20 times what folks down there do.

And Musashi, where do you get off damning "inferior", "criminal", "lazy" Latin immigrants at every opportunity, and thinking you can just move to their lands whenever you need someone new to exploit?

There are all sorts of Latin Americans as there are all sorts of people here.
I lived in several Latin American countries long enough to understand them quite well.
There is no doubt in my mind that the upper class in countries like Mexico actively encourages their unemployable social loads to move north. In that sense they are a political football or victims if you wish, but they are the financial responsibility of their own government and not of the American taxpayer.

The same Mexican officials that whine at us actively discourage immigration into their own country by force at their southern border. Like everyone else around here, they want it both ways.

From reading some of your other posts it is clear that you should be able to understand what is going on easily, even if it doesn't fit your views. It is what it is.

That is an unsupportable pile of monkey poo that you've just dumped in this thread, sir.

The United States did receive a good lot of undesirables ... from Cuba ... once ... a long time ago. The Cuban government simply drained about 2,500 behavior problems from the prison system and stirred them in with the 125,000 who came here during the Marielito boat lift.


Other than this one event a generation ago the people we see coming from Central and South America are generally industrious, law abiding, and very much following in the footsteps of every ethnic group who ever migrated to this country. Most articles I see on the matter indicate concern over the brain drain happening in Mexico as their best and brightest come north, but I do tend to read liberal crap like The Economist and Foreign Affairs. I suppose you've got some peer reviewed wingnuttery that counters this assessment?

You read too much BS.
The truth is that most Mexican professionals don't even want to live here. I have a number of friends down there, they may have studied here, they may come to shop here from time to time but they don't want to live here. Some that came here legally moved back.

IMO there also is no comparison to the Cuban people, I don't know that situation first hand but my impression is that it was a purely political situation.
The situation with the Mexican indians, for lack of a better term, is purely driven by economics on all sides. Their real enemy is their own government. Guess what? They don't want to be here either.

This is a very different situation from a generation or two ago, when people that came here even for economic reasons actually wanted to be integrated into our culture.

You guys can say whatever you want, I spent better then half my 20+ years all over Latin America and know along which lines the various people generally think.
I still ride my bike down there when I feel like it. Nothing happens. The only country down there I wouldn't go alone is Colombia, other then that, no big deal.

I agree with your comments about Columbia---
Totally off the charts, if you are looking for edge (interrogation by the Columbian Secret Police, DAS, was one of my most unpleasant memories).
Your economic analysis is totally wrong from my experience, having driven the length of Mexico and Central America several times.
You really should educate yourself and visit Argentina, the best model for economic new ideas so far. Latin America is the one bright spot on the planet.
Anyway, with the collapse of the Mexican oil situation, things are going to get interesting fast. I spent last February down in Guerrero, and outright rebellion and supervision is happening now in society.
I have rich friends in Mexico City, and even they see the end.
You need a more developed analysis.
(Not your fault, probably clueless gringo drifting through life)

Drums of war on Iran louder and louder

"Republican candidate Mitt Romney said he would consider a military blockade or "bombardment of some kind" to prevent Iran from gaining a nuclear weapon"


"The Quds Force is the "Iranian regime's primary instrument for providing lethal support to the Taliban," and it "provides weapons and financial support to the Taliban to support anti-U.S. and anti-coalition activity in Afghanistan," the Treasury Department alleged Thursday in announcing economic sanctions against the Quds Force and other Iranian military and financial entities."


Uh oh. Updated 12 minutes ago

""Iran also funnels hundreds of millions of dollars each year through the international financial system to terrorists," said Paulson."

And ""We will be open to the discussion of any issue," said Rice. "But if Iran's rulers choose to continue down a path of confrontation, the United States will act with the international community to resist these threats of the Iranian regime."

Despite "Mohamed ElBaradei, director-general of the United Nations' International Atomic Energy Agency, has criticized U.S. rhetoric on Iran and said last month that Iran's declared nuclear material has not been diverted from peaceful use"


Who is forcing the confrontation here? Who is trying to force the path of escalation? How can Americans not see the same rhetoric going on here as we heard for Iraq? Do we secretly want this adminstration to go forward with its plans so that we have "energy security"? This must be true because no one is protesting all this "inevitability". Or are we just too frightened these days?

"Who is forcing the confrontation here? Who is trying to force the path of escalation?"


What is interesting this time is that Putin has basically drawn a line and maybe BushCo will step over it. China is silent, but you know that if Iran gets hit the dollar is going to get smacked hard. It also looks like Turkey favors Iran over the USA. BushCo (and the Rethugs like Paulson and Romney) are certainly unifying the various regions of East and Northeast Asia.

Yep...I think Iran and Russia have a tight relationship that is mostly not advertised...especially after the deals they have made over pipelines in the Caspian. I would not be surprised if KSA and Russia have some under the table dealings in case of the inevitable. Turkey is growing more and more anti-USA and pro-Iran for now, although they can be wishy-washy about their alliances. China thinks they can call their own shots, but when push comes to shove, I think they will side with Russia due to proximity and other factors.

And China will play their currency card. They have a lot to lose, but it still is a communist country, and it may be one way to curb runaway economic growth.

China and Russia already have very string ties with Russia. Off course they'll side with Russia. If Iran is attacked, WWIII breaks loose.

Bush talking up WWIII as well.

For a world war to take place, there must be parties on both sides. Who would be on our side in any substantial way?

Europe. The Western Industrial Empire will stick (and fail) together, because we serve the same masters.

In the past, you would think most of South America would be on our side, not any more.

Good thing Europe isn't dependent upon Russia in any way.

Europe is dependent upon Russia !!!!!
www.oxfordprospect.co.uk/Nabucco.htm - 14k


EU imports mor then 40% of natural gas and around 20% oil from russia some countries are almost 100% dependant up on it

Brian was being sarcastic, essentially pointing out that Europe cannot be aligned with the US because it is dependant on Russian fuel (I think). They are of course, but what if Europeans do not believe that Russia will be able or willing to continue to do that (likely)?

The big question is, what governments other then the US and UK are so penetrated that they will sacrifice the welfare of their own people for a third party?

It seems the third party is way out of luck once PO and fiscal bankruptcy in the US hit, that's why this faction is so eager to have the fur fly.

Who would be on our side in any substantial way?

Should be "Bush's side". He will not be able to con us again. He will not have much support in the US either even if he does drag us into a war with much of the rest of the world.

That depends.

If he uses nukes on Iran, there is a chance, a small chance, that the American people will become so terrified of the punishment we will receive for Bush's crimes that we will rally behind him and escalate into WW3. It happened in Nazi Germany once people realized that the Red Army was coming for them.

I mean, it's not like anyone here has managed to stop the bastard so far.

Talking of Nazi bastards:

''Do not rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the bitch that bore him is in heat again''.

- Bertold Brecht.

Will Shrub and the angry hog do it?

They believe in God, end times and possibly rapture.(the ultimate get out)
One believes that God talks to him (time for straight jacket)
They believe a world without a supreme America is not one worth living in. ( See 'The Downfall' - German film on DVD)
They are surrounded by toadies and sycophants who tell them what they want to hear. (Again, see Downfall)
The next election will topple them.
After the next election, they may become pariah, hunted men who cannot travel for fear of indictment or worse.(Again, get Downfall out. A truly brilliant film)
After the next election, there is risk. Risk of Indictment in the US.


Remove the risk. Go to war. Suspend the Democratic process. Get the enemy without set up and the enemy within coralled. Create fear and hysteria.

''Better an end in hell than a hell without end'' - Chalked on walls in Berlin 1945.

Above all, retain power.

Its the Furherprinzip.

The last thing between you and this fate is whatever sane and honourable parts of the US Officer Corps are still left.

You need a Count Claus Von Stauffenburg.

The parallels are striking.

Anyway, Good luck.

All too true - America for them is defined as a country dominating the North American continent with them in charge. The end of them would be the end of the country, and thusly the logic of destroying the village to save the village gets applied at a national level.

What a bunch of clowns - Bush & Co. for who they are, the legislature for not taking a belt to their backsides the day after they were sworn in, the compromised Supreme Court which I fear will never be cleansed, and the complicit war whore mainstream media.

Too true, the world owes much to the members of the US military who remember that their oath is to the constitution not the President, and are prepared to risk their lives (there are alot of 'accidents' happening to military personel) to do what is best for their nation.

Without these people I suspect the US would already be at war with Iran.

For a world war to take place, there must also be a draft. That is the one thing that would be guaranteed to bring both draft aged kids and aging boomers back out on the streets.

We already have a draft - an economic draft. It'll only get easier in the future to buy cannon fodder at $40k a head.

Bush doesn't need a draft if he escalates the war to nukes. Then it becomes the purview of the Christian-infiltrated US Air Force and the Anglo-imperialist US Navy. All we have to do is sit back and die.

Which reminds me of what Hitler used to complain:

"I have a feudalist Army, a monarchist Navy, and a National Socialist Air Force."

Why it would be a VERY bad idea for the US Navy to attack Iran:

"That should scare the hell out of everybody who cares about how well the US is prepared to fight its next war. It means that a bunch of Cessnas, fishing boats and assorted private craft, crewed by good soldiers and armed with anti-ship missiles, can destroy a US aircraft carrier. That means that the hundreds of trillions (yeah, trillions) of dollars we've invested in shipbuilding is wasted, worthless.

"A few years ago, a US submarine commander said, "There are two kinds of ship in the US Navy: subs and targets." The fact that big surface ships are dinosaurs is something that's gotten clearer every decade since 1921."


Errol in Miami

Carriers have anti-missile gatling guns.

Carriers have the phalanx:


But the Iranians have the ultrafast Russian built SS-N-22 Sunburn.


And the ultrasneaky Chinese built C-802



Unless we achieve total surprise we are going to lose ships in the gulf due to the quality of the Iranian missiles and the short distances over which they have to operate to get to their targets.

Iran's Sunburns fly too fast for a bunch of bullets to matter. Also, good luck directing those guns fast enough at a target moving 3,675 km/h at 3 meters above sea level (i.e. it will hit from below the horizon in 11 seconds).

The Exile article is full of BS. All the chatter about nuclear strikes on Iran show that US forces are not prepared for Iran's conventional response.

The Vulcan Phalanx CIWS, in full auto mode, can go from detection to target designation to engagement in under 3 seconds. In engagement mode, against a target like the Sunburns, it's firing rate is close to 7,000 rounds per minute. It fires in bursts of 100 to 300 rounds. Its radar tracks the outbound shells and the inbound target target and its computer adjusts subsequent bursts as necessary. The average number of bursts to kill a supersonic target is three.

The shells are 20mm high density tungsten. They are not explosive, but might as well be given the amount of kinetic energy released when they impact a very high speed target at their own very high speeds.

I have seen the original system successfully engage low level Mach 2.0 targets (about 500 kmh slower than the Sunburn) and high level Mach 3 targets. Since then the system has been upgraded at lesat twice to handle much faster low and high level targets.

Also, this system is considered a "point defense" system. That is, it is a last ditch defense system, intended to engage targets that have managed to get past long and medium range anti-missile systems. Carries operate in battle groups that employ defense in depth.

Airborne radars can see a Sunburn flying at low level 150 or more kilometers away. Airborne fighter have "look down, shoot down" capabilities. Battle group Aegis cruisers can put dozens of anti-missile missiles in the air in less than a minute. DDG's and FFG's can add in additional missiles.

The Sunburns (and the Chinese anti-ship missiles) are indeed a significant threat to US Navy ships, but they are far from being a sure thing, especially if the attacks are anticipated and only involve a few missiles at a time.

Ah, but what defenses do oil tankers have against Sunburns...? The battle ships might have adequate defenses, but what about the logistic chain (not that they run on oil, but the supporting countries do).

"Europe has decided to sit this one out."

-Red Dawn, a childhood favorite

For a world war to take place, there must also be a draft. That is the one thing that would be guaranteed to bring both draft aged kids and aging boomers back out on the streets.

Well, not if it's a nuclear war. The actual fighting might only last for 15 minutes. Of course, the consequences would be with us for decades to come.

"I don't know how we're going to fight World War III, but I know how we're going to fight World War IV - with sticks and rocks."
-- Albert Einstein

You US nuts are on your own in this drive to WWIII.

What, you think that will stop us? We hardly even realize that there are human beings outside the United States.

human beings outside the United States.

Not much awareness for human beings inside the United States either it seems!

Also consider the SCO (Shanghai Cooperation Organization) with the primary members being Russia and China. Iran is technically has observer status, but is essentially treated as a member. The US sought observer status but was rejected. In light of the SCO and other political and economic ties, I cannot see Russia and China sitting idly by while the US bombs the hell out of Iran.

Why confront us directly?

Chairman Hu:

"I knew that trillion bucks was gonna come in handy some day!"

Whatever accidentally falls on Tehran might just fall on Tel Aviv also.

If there's going to be a nuclear war, there might be several other countries that "accidentally" get hit like North Korea, Syria, Cuba and Venezuela.

Those are not "countries". They are people. Flesh and bone people like you and me. They have families, they have children, they have dreams. All to be erased by an impersonal high tech gift from the sky demon.


Open Letter to "Generation Screwed"


Also be sure to read comments.

Very telling.

How can Americans not see the same rhetoric going on here as we heard for Iraq?

Oh we do, we definitely do..

Do we secretly want this adminstration to go forward with its plans so that we have "energy security"? This must be true because no one is protesting all this "inevitability". Or are we just too frightened these days?

Actually, there are frequent protests. They're just never covered in the mainstream media. At least certain parts of the country definitely see what is happening and are definitely opposed to it. It has a good likelihood in the next few years of creating deep and permanent divisions if nothing is done soon to reign in this reckless behavior.

Aerospace Engineer
Everett, Washington - Cascadia

Lets play the game.

Hamas is too Israel as Iran is too USA

Hamas is too Palestine as Iran is too Iraq.

Iran is winning hearts and minds with local support and flooding zone with food, destroying any chance at local farming. America is not happy :(

It is really that simple. Check the Israeli tactics and the US&A ( Greatest Country in the World will follow.

The American people are aware of situation, they do not want to give it up. Oil in the tank is one hell of an intoxicant. I love it my self!

I don't think the word "too" means what you think it means.


Great film :)

U.S. industry's last best hope is selling weapons for a phony "war" with Iran.

No doubt they are busy arming all sides, as usual -- then they stand back and collect the profits.

Only thing is, the entire earth system is tanking. So they get a gazillion dollars (or Euros or Yen or Yuan -- it's not only Americans playing this game), what are they going to buy with their money when there is no oil, no water, no forest, no fish, dead ocean, no glaciers, no giant rivers, toxic air -- where are the elite going to hide? V.P. Cheney might like underground bunkers -- I doubt that would be the first choice of many.

"U.S. industry's last best hope is selling weapons for a phony "war" with Iran."

Sounds reasonable. If it were true. GWB has pledged to do something about the Iranian "nookelar threat" before leaving office, VP Cheney has warned of "serious consequences" if Iran doesn't halt their enrichment program, and Israel said if the issue wouldn't be resolved they will act on their own. Y'know, "all options on the table" and the rest of the all-to-familiar retoric.

But let's hope you're right.

Only thing is, the entire earth system is tanking. So they get a gazillion dollars (or Euros or Yen or Yuan -- it's not only Americans playing this game), what are they going to buy with their money when there is no oil, no water, no forest, no fish, dead ocean, no glaciers, no giant rivers, toxic air --

Boy are you ever a doomer. You should read someone who really knows what they are talking about. Someone who will set you straight on where the world stands on environmental issues and on energy issues, like just how much oil is left in the world. Someone like…..say…..Bjorn Lomborg:

At $40 a barrel (less than one-third above the current world price), shale oil can supply oil for the next 250 years at current consumption. And all in all there is oil enough to cover our total energy needs for the next 5,000 years.
- Bjorn Lomborg, The Skeptical Environmentalist, Page 135

Well, then again, perhaps not. ;-)

Ron Patterson

"at current consumption" = incoming Bullshit!

... again – there will be NO war against Iran , its all hot air. Just my opinion.

Paal: I agree with you (I have my fingers crossed). IMO, this one is very dangerous because of the position of Russia and China (especially Russia).

Last year I would agree with you, However, as with the bush admin, for me all options are on the table. If you talked to me in 2002 I would tell you vehematly that there is no way the USA would invade Iraq. I thought the rhetoric had so many holes that oil tankers could float through them. At the same time the situation with North Korea was really heating up. With both I thought, NO WAY. But in 2003 I sat transfixed by the continuous CNN coverage of the ultimatum and the subsequent invasion. I had to slap myself several times and I drank heavily.

At this stage in the game I sadly feel unoptimistic about how we conduct business in the world. The real world has dulled my senses more than fast paced shoot-em-up FPS games ever did. The shock and awe is in ME now. I feel such an overwhelming sense of Dejavu at the SAME TIME OF YEAR that we built the case of invasion the first time in 2002. Right now I would wager the public has a lower opinion of Iran than the president. I mean, Amadenajad was set up coming to the USA, you saw how he was received when he came to the states not that long ago. I am starting to see phrases like "weapons on mass destrucion" pop up now, I am fucking scared shitless. Public opinion can be swayed overnight if needed, All they have to do is summon the Iranian boogieman that will come in the night to molest middle America...

All that being said, yes I have been drinking, and maybe I should take a vow of not drinking and posting, but I am at the point that I am so desensitized that anything is possible.

Never underestimate the stooooopidity of the American public. That Naomi Wolf video that was linked about the fall of democracy could never be more poignant. Hell, you can learn a lot about despotism from watching the star wars prequels. Peak oil is scary, but GWB is wet-your-pants frightening.

That's why the 'Fear card' is so great.. (Seductive the dark side is, and forever will it consume your destiny..) If the Bush-adm 'decides' not to invade/bomb, etc.. then GWB gets to wear his 'Peacemaker: Blessed is the decider-guy' Jumpsuit.

They know how to work either angle..

Putin's visit to Tehran a few weeks ago and the statements made raised the stakes tremendously. I believe that Putin's stance in Tehran may have served to lessen the likelihood of a US military strike against Iran. Although, the neo-hawks in Washington are rabid enough to go for it no matter what the stakes.

Here is a question - What other choices are there for the people who are pushing for this war, and what are the consequences if they take those choices? What do they, personally, gain or lose?

Twilight - Think of it this way – Imagine there was no such thing as hydrocarbons in the middle East - no nothing, but sand and a few tribesmen !

.. then ask yourself “would the US be down there at all?” – Depending on your answer to this … that is exactly what “those people who are pushing for war” shall do … ( ps – there is only one answer to that question … ;-))

Of course we would not be there. My point was that to understand why these people are doing what appear to be completely irrational things (and they are to most of us), you have to try to put yourself into their shoes, with their goals and concerns. What are the allegiances of those in this crowd? What do they know about what is coming, and what is driving them to make the moves they are? So maybe the costs are high, but who pays them? If those making the decisions are not personally at risk, then these things we think of as deterrents may not be effective.

These are rhetorical question - I already have an opinion as to what the answers are.

So yes, Putin's moves are some of he most serious deterrents yet, but will they be enough?

Hi Twilight, your answer “Of course we would not be there” to my "hypothetical plot (no oil)", SHOULD be the answer to "today’s scenario (with oil)" also .. (IMO)

...then to your questions – (my suggested answers)

What other choices are there for the people who are pushing for this war?

A: Not go to war

What are the consequences if they take those choices?

A: If they go to war – all the opposite things they pursue in doing so, will happen … more scarcity of oil, more hatred towards US/Israel, more doom and gloom – world economics goes to hell, NO TIME for peak oil mitigations (when PO is understood in few years…) Everything is thrown overboard – and put into a state of limbo … for NO avail…

What do they, personally, gain or lose?

There will for the reasons mentioned above – be NOTHING to gain for them personally – ONLY “Hitlerish” mentioning in future history books …


But giving up on this approach means that the US (and the Western Industrial Empire) must give up on the idea of controlling the remaining oil supply. This means decline and an end to power. Your (valid) point that none of this can succeed is irrelevant - the issue is not whether it will work, but whether it will be started. And that in turn rests on the fears and concerns of a rather small number of people with rather different views of the world than you or I. The logic you are using cannot explain how we've gotten to where we are now.

The logic you are using cannot explain how we've gotten to where we are now.

Time to scrutinize closely the various "conspirationists" thesis around?
Might it be that some of them contain some "details" which may explain "how we've gotten to where we are now"?
(as you know, the devil is in the "details"...)

I started this sub-sub-thread in saying there will be NO war against Iran – it’s all hot air … and I mean just that. NOT in my remotest hallucinating moments I can see a war started OR even limited attacks … b’cos then “this is it” .. ref. my second answer just above..

Obviously this “NO Iranian Nukes stands - The Bible stating (.. the Israelis shall be the last…to…blah blah) – and the Am-presidents personal faith” has something to do with all this hot air-rhetoric -… BUT there is MORE to this world than the US and Iran, lets never forget that-one.

And let it be known that I believe that Iran is only trying to produce some more electricity …. What is so peculiar with that?? “Iranians are very nice people … and deserve all the best“… just like you “individual Americans do” … THIS is a clash between mentalities/systems – who is right and who is wrong – kind a thing .. not easy to measure and probable not possible at all, so it boils down to :
Get back to where you came from (US armed forces)– and take your problems from there ! Look into your own resource base and see what you should do – buy what you can from the open markets AND beyond that shut-up…

IF we are at PO now – this is the maximum point of where we can “get some assistance” from petroleum to mitigate the future solutions … TAKE IT or LEAVE IT !

Clearly, we have decided to take it. That decision was already made, and I'm not sure how you could have failed to notice. No, it won't work, and it is immoral and stupid, but there it is just the same.

I still do not expect a U.S. strike on Iran, for a number of reasons. However, as long as we are discussing this ear-tickling topic, I'd like to point out that we may be 180 degrees wrong on the Russian perspective of the situation. Who benefits from a U.S. attack on Iran? Not Iran of course, not the U.S., it would be very dangerous for Israel, and the Gulf Arabs would suffer if the Persian Gulf gets blocked. Who benefits? Russia, in spades. The price of oil would go up to who knows how high, and Russian exports would not suffer a bit. They would make a fortune. I'm sure Putin has thought of this.

How does Russia benefit if all of Russia's customers collapse over this move? OK, they'd still have Europe and Japan, but damage to the U.S. economy is damage to the world ...

attacking Iran is a wildcard that I prefer to see not played ...

Your argument is meaningless, by this logic the biggest winner would be Saudi Arabia as it is the biggest exporter.

Virtually nobody is interested in an oil "spike" (except maybe terrorists) - this will damage the world economy and the stable demand of oil in the longer term.

In addition Russia has more to lose than simply money - a strike against Iran will destabilize the whole region and will foster islamic terrorism which is a big problem for Russia too. They also have plans for joint energy projects not only with Iran but with most of the countries in Central Asia. A military escalation in the region and all those billion $s worth projects will go down the toilet. Same goes to other stakeholders like China, Japan, France...

Saudi Arabia would not be a winner in this conflict because oil traffic in the Persian Gulf would likely be disrupted, and most Saudi exports transit the Straights of Hormuz, adjacent to Iran.

I do agree with you that the world economy would be damaged, and that the harm might be severe. Furthermore, wars have unintended, unpredictable consequences, and it is doubtful that we can make reliable predictions about all its results.

Still, my contention that Russia benefits is basic supply and demand. Supply drops 15 million barrels per day, quantity demanded would not drop nearly as much as that, so the price would go through the roof. Russian exports would not be harmed, but would instead become much more valuable. Furthermore, everyone would really rely on them.

This destabilizes the U.S. and many other countries all at once. Iraq is bad enough - moving against Iran will fire up every hot spot on the globe.

Exactly – that’s why all this jumbo-mambo is only”a bag of hot air”... for what purpose … don’t ask me

Bush is mental. Totally, completely, lock him up so he doesn't hurt himself mental. You just can't leave a member of a doomsday cult, no matter how old and well respect it might be, with his finger on the nuclear trigger or stuff like what we have now will happen. That goes double when the cultist in question is a drug addict who dried out but never really achieved any sort of sobriety.

Well whereas I’m in here with my full name, I deeply feel I have to constrain myself “in not taking a leak – all over the place” if you see what I mean…SCT ? :-)

But I often sense others vibrations via the screen when issued , and I often agree ….

We either have the right to free speech and a government which will get back to enforcing it, or things are much worse than we fear. Its just that simple :-)

Belligerence. Strutting about powerful like. Pretending the US can threaten effectively. He is a ‘war’ president. Displaying US power.

Whipping up hate. Accustoming Americans to perpetual war. Making them afraid, turning them into potential victims.

Pleasing Israel. Doing the neo con bit. Pleasing Arab haters (never mind that they are Persians). Pleasing war lovers and those who have interest in war.

Cocking a snoot at Putin, many others.

Distracting from other problems (PO amongst others)

Finally, partly out of frustration.

I think this is telling:

China's apparent oil demand grew at the slowest rate in 20 months in September, up just 0.3 percent from a year earlier.

From http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20071026/bs_nm/markets_oil_dc_4

Iran is on Russia's periphery, and the Russians (just about all of them, not just Putin) are getting mighty PO'd every time the US messes around on their periphery. They've had just about enough of it.

If we had kept a respectful distance up to now, things might be quite a bit different, they might be in a considerably more cooperative mood with regard to our concerns about Iran. I'm sure they are a little nervous as well about the idea of an Iran with nukes.

However, we are talking about basic issues of national sovereignty and pride here, and that often tends to override everything else.

When will the European Union stand up to the Bushites and declare economic sanctions against the USA if it attacks Iran? Refuse to buy anything American. Don't let US airlines fly in your airspace. Repatriate every American living in Europe. Freeze all assets of US corporations. You Europeans have been such gutless wonders for so long that you can't even keep your own backyards clean, i.e. the Balkans, without the USAF flying cover. You certainly are gutless when it comes to cleaning up the mess you made of Africa like the tyrants of Uganda, Rwanda, Zimbabwe, Sudan, etc. Put down the wine bottles, kiss your mistress goodbye, and put some muscle behind all your whining!

Thank you for that, Thomas.

They're not gutless wonders. They're consumers. Just like the Democrats. Capitalism has programmed them this way:

Evil act make more stuff: cover his ass

Good act make less stuff: vote out his ass

As long as our leaders commit crimes that seem to have the intent of making America more powerful (even if they won't), the global corporations have to back it, so it is impossible for Europeans or Americans to resist. America is the sword and shield of the larger capitalist empire, just as Britain once was.

And how about 300,000 dead Guatemalans, courtesy of the American CIA?

War doesn't seem smart if you're trying to maintain a growing economy, or a myriad of other reasons. It does benefit for other reasons.

Portland is the fourth commanding officer of a submarine to be relieved of duty this year. The other three, who were relieved for various unrelated actions, were: Cmdr. Edwin Ruff of the USS Minneapolis St. Paul, Cmdr. Matthew Weingart of the USS Newport News and Cmdr. William Schwalm of the USS Helena."

The link is to a news story about a recent commander that was replaced. This "snip" above is at the bottom of the article.


Don't know enough about subs and what class the above are,,, etc, but a check showed that the first time a "trident' commander was released was back in 97.

Four in one year,

and a side note. The byline I noticed from this site is by "chelsea carter".

All four subs are SSN's, that is, they are attack submarines. None of them are Trident ballistic missile submarines (SSBN's).

All of them are Los Angeles class subs. Their main intent is carrier task force protection but their primary land attack weapon is the Tomahawk cruise missile which is capable of carrying various different payloads.

and a side note. The byline I noticed from this site is by "chelsea carter".

I don't follow. Who is Chelsea Carter and why is that important? Or are you combining Amy Carter and Chelsea Clinton and thinking Chelsea Carter is the daughter of a president?

YEPPPERs I sure did do that. Submarines helped, being Jimmy was nuclear engineer on a Sub.

anyways, I knew I would be corrected if wrong LOL.

No one said though if so many commanders of subs being replaced, Trident or not, is usual so to speak.

During my Navy duty the only time that I know about when that many CO's of subs were relieved in one year the Navy had about three times as many subs as now.

Being CO of any nuclear powered vessel used to be a very high pressure job. If a conventional powered ship failed a major engineering inspection, CO could survive it. If a nuke powered vessel failed the major nuke engineering inspection, CO was almost always relieved.

This was in addition to the opportunities to get relieved due to things like running aground, failure to meet operational requirements, moral or financial improprieties, or other indications of failure of command.

You are assuming that the administration is sane. Bad assumption.

We can not prosecute a war against Iran on the ground without a draft and taxes. That will get half of the remaining 24% who support Bush calling for his head on a platter and we'll finally see some action out of our spineless Democratic majority.

We can, however, savage Iran from the air. We chatter endlessly about their access to nuclear weapons, but I suspect their domestic consumption is the real target. wipe out their refineries and economy, wait for the next revolution to pass, and then buy the oil on the cheap from the survivors ... who can sell to us or starve. Stupid, I know, but that may be the best the Bush administration can do for a strategic vision ...

Bush is having a real Fuhrerbunker moment here. If they don't succeed in attacking Iran and gaining the support of the majority of the population, the population will attack them and the rest of the Republican party for the mess they've made.

The neocons, of which Bush is an instrument, do not care about support,nor about the costs. They'll let the printing presses run overtime (if not already, if possible). Don't expect much action from the other Republicrats. And the majority of the world already wants Bush's head on a platter. H'll just bug out to Paraguay.

All too true. Yet, in 2008, will we really have a choice who we elect? I can assure you that Alan Drake will not be on the ballot, but we will have some Democrats that will be less than inspiring to the majority of the US population, otherwise the election results will be embarrassing. Is it an accident that the best person (IMHO) running for President that the MSM will mention is Ron Paul, who has been a rethuglican for many years? However, the US has these d@mned voting machines that can't even print out a receipt. I know that Joe Six and Billy Four might not be the sharpest of tacks, but even the MSM could not put enough lipstick on a shrub to get more than half of the voters to choose rethug after four years of watching Bush/Cheney at work. [In My Humble Opinion.]

As Juan Cole points out in 'Informed Comment,' few if any countries are going to pay attention to the shrub/vader call for sanctions against Iran. Dutch Shell, China, Russia, et al, are going to continue biz as usual with Iran. Why should anyone listen to a debtor nation that is going more deeply into debt daily and destroying its own currency when the world desperately needs more energy...Which Iran happens to have. After a short time period the shrub administration will declare the sanctions 'a limited success, but not enough to cause regime change in Iran' and will proceed to the next step...A blockade of Iranian ports or some other such provocative action. Perhaps another Tonkin Gulf? In international law the blockade of a countries ports is an act of war...But that would not stop those that invaded Iraq, would it?


...snip...'The hypocrisy of the Bush case is obvious when it complains about Iran supporting Hizbullah and Hamas. The Kurds based in American Iraq have done much worse things to Turkey in the past month than Hizbullah did to Israel in June of 2006. Yet when Israel launched a brutal and wideranging war on all of Lebanon, destroying precious infrastructure and dumping enormous amounts of oil into the Mediterranean, damaging Beirut airport, destroying essential bridges in Christian areas, and then releasing a million cluster bomblets on civilian areas in the last 3 days of the war-- when Israel did all that, Bush and Cheney applauded and argued against a 'premature' cease-fire! Yet they are trying to convince Turkey just to put up stoically with the PKK terrorists who have killed dozens of Turkish troops recently and kidnapped 8 (again, more than the number of Iraeli troops that were kidnapped). Bush's coddling of the PKK in Iraq is not different from Iran's support for Hizbullah, except that the PKK is a more dangerous and brutal organization than Hizbullah.'...snip...

I like Juan Cole.

Thanks everybody for feedbacks. A nuclear armed empire in decline is very dangerous.

from the Drumbeat today: http://www.menafn.com/qn_news_story_s.asp?StoryId=1093171446

"Globally, oil prices are not the thing that is going to cause us problems," he said. "The key thing is that hydrocarbons are becoming more difficult to develop, taking more time, and the cumulative effect of this is a more challenging supply situation," he said. There was also a long-time frame between deciding to invest in new producing projects and them delivering, he added.

This blogger seems pretty upset with Matt Simmons for calling a spade a spade. He pretty much says the same thing as Simmons, only it is disguised in a manner which appears to encourage naive investors to put money into perpetual motion schemes and new Ponzi-type plans. Increased "development" of "hydrocarbons". Send money. Good on.

A Globe & Mail article on Alberta's royalty increase:

Royalties boost begins in 2009

Government officials said the increases would likely slow development somewhat.

This is a dynamic I've been harping on for some time. As it becomes accepted that we are at or near peak, 'owners' of the resource will find it rewarding to make decisions that slow future development. The net affect is the same as hoarding and it will tend to make the peak in oil production occur earlier but also make it less like a peak and more like a plateau.

Canada's right-wing newspaper, The National Post, says:

It's a deal that places Alberta alongside the hydrocarbon-rich Banana Republics of this world where deals are ripped up and promises broken.

Duh. And, of course, they insist production will fall. Duh again.

If it becomes clear that the resource is worth more tomorrow than today, simple economics tells us that production will be deferred one way or another. Greed will help mitigate peak oil.

Note that it is far less political painful to tax the oil companies than to tax consumers and that putting additional constraints on production can have the same effect as conservation. Turn the tap off at the source. Keep the oil in the ground for the future.

Perhaps Robert Rapier will give us a full analysis. Not.

Price might affect demand? Sure.

Do you suppose it might affect supply too?

Economics is far more subtle than simple supply and demand. It also deals with price expectations -- past, present and future -- and the perceived value of a good relative to other goods, now and later.

The Arabs have figured this out. Are we white men just too dumb?

I was listening to the former stock jock (Joe?) on Squawk Box a couple of days ago when he made the comment 'I wouldnt pay $90 for a barrel of oil, it just isnt worth it.'...duh...

Is he really that stupid? Does he not know that he IS paying the price when he puts fuel in his vehicle?

It was a reminder to me of why I started watching that show only occasionally and then only with the sound muted!

Actually, since the oil Majors are mostly run by rich white men, I'd say they're even smarter! If OPEC wants to hold prices high, it has to restrict supply. But non-OPEC producers get the same benefit of high prices with no obligation to limit production, and so are classic free riders on the cartel. Every time OPEC has to scale back production to support prices - or expand at a slower rate than might otherwise be possible - they are forgoing market share and profits that then accrue to the free riders.

If you're EXXON or BP, you just have to try to produce as much as possible to make as much money as possible. Let OPEC continue to step up and 'take one for the team'.

Sounds pretty smart to me....

Foregoing market share?!?!

As was shown and discussed at Houston, the IOCs have between 5 and 8% market share/total global reserves, and their share is shrinking at their 7-8% decline rate. For all intents and purposes, they are dead investments, to paraphrase Simmons, Pickens, and several others. They may be freeriding; but they are freeriding into oblivion.

So are NOCs, maybe a little bit behind them, but so are they...

..Let's face it – there is NO MORE Demand for oil – there is ONLY Supply!


Do you mean "actual quantity demanded" and "actual quantity supplied", which must always be equal? Because that's (obviously) not what I meant...

I suppose it would be useful to be more consistent here about technical vs. colloquial usage of economic terms. We should clarify if "increase in demand" means an increase in actual quantity demanded, a left-ward movement along the demand curve, or a right-ward shift of the demand curve, or a purely psychological increase in stated interest in oil that has no other effects whatsoever (say, from media or political attention).

...but then that might actually clarify too much about the Peak Oil debate, so I predict we won't bother....

There is only ONE ”Mona Lisa”, but there is a Demand for “many more”, but due to the sad reality that Leonardo Da Vinci is dead, that is not an option anymore … if you see what I mean ?

If I want the Mona Lisa, I can't have it. Even if I offered 17 trillion Euros, the French wouldn't sell it. But if I want a barrel of oil, I just spend more money. There's a LOT more than one barrel of oil left. So, no, I don't see what you mean.

Are you suggesting that the price of oil is independent of demand and supply?

Ethan: Is English a problem for yourself? You can only purchase what is supplied. You can demand one trillion times the world supply if you like. You sound like an economist in training.

EthanS - you say

There's a LOT more than one barrel of oil left ….

Fine … but WHAT you fail to see is that “all the annual barrels” make up ”ONE MONA LISA” .. This is philosophy but not for the faint hearted and narrow minded …

From answers.com

Demand - Concerning economics.

The desire to possess a commodity or make use of a service, combined with the ability to purchase it.
The amount of a commodity or service that people are ready to buy for a given price: Supply should rise to meet demand.

If we are at Peak Oil now or nearby ..... then no more SUPPLY will eternally be possible – NOW, where will the claimed "rise in SUPPLY" come from … I mean in order to meet demand :::??”

You sound like WestTexas, cherry-picking data. You are taking that definition completely out of context. The bolded line "supply should rise to meet demand" is italicized in the original definition to denote it's being used as an example of a grammatically correct use of that word. It says nothing about the definition of 'demand' itself.

Put another way, supply never has to 'rise' to meet demand. Supply will always equal demand, at least as defined by economists.

cherry picking , what the heck is that supposed to mean?
(Amazing , do they speak english on your planet as well ?)

What is more likely to be met - supply (reality) or demand (a wish) ?

Do you believe in the EIA/IEA prospects of 120 or 130 mb/d in 2030 - or not ? Because that's what they say demand will be ...

(think hard before you grab for your key-board..again)

'Chery picking' is an expression: "cherry picking is used metaphorically to indicate the act of pointing at individual cases or data that seem to confirm a particular position, while ignoring a significant portion of related cases or data that may contradict that position."

If what you say is true and the EIA or IEA predicts demand of 120 or 130 mb/d in 2030, at what price are they predicting this? Are their predictions made entirely independently of supply concerns? Are they performing a hypothetical experiment projecting how high demand would rise if oil prices stay at an arbitrarily low rate and we can assume unlimited supply growth?

I would very much like to see the original predictions but if they don't contain some of the above supporting information they are completely meaningless.

Put another way, supply never has to 'rise' to meet demand. Supply will always equal demand, at least as defined by economists.

Are you really that dumb or just an economist?
You are weaseling with the definition of the word "supply", intent to mean that "supply" is the amount which happened to be consumed after the fact, whereas everybody else in his sane mind means that "supply" is the maximum amount (of any commodity) which could be consumed at any given moment.
Same with the definition of the word "demand", just the other way around.
So, saying "supply will always equal demand" is outstandingly idiotic in that in that it provides no information whatsoever about the constraints between demand and supply.

There's no need to resort to personal insults, especially jumping into the middle of a conversation like that.

If you had been following this discussion closely, you would see that the definition I was referring to relates to an Economist's definition of demand. Therefore, my statement is entirely correct.

you are wrong Ener Ji, you did not read/understood my gist here ... read again, from the top

Your last sentence: Cheap shot,completely unrelated to your post, and designed to disrupt the community. And here I go, feeding the troll.

I'm a fan of Robert's work. He's no industry shill. He is however an industry apologist by instinct. Hardly surprising as that's where his bread and butter is and he doesn't write under a pseudonym.

But objectively it is obvious that a big part of peak oil mitigation involves reducing production now in favour of future production. Flattening the curve. Or, failing that, engineering a steep drop off now (when the world is steekin' rich) so that there is more oil later when things are perhaps less rosy.

Deliberately hobbling domestic oil production further (in Canada and the US) would help with that. Anything to keep it in the ground.


I should add that dealing the oil industry a few body blows is completely within the realm of political feasibility as is in evidence in Alberta. (though I expect their royalty grab will be scaled back, perhaps alot)

The media coverage on this issue has been a farce. Has anyone actually read the royalty review report? http://www.albertaroyaltyreview.ca/panel/final_report.pdf (PDF, 2.3MB). See quotes below.

The recommendations ... will see royalty reductions for the majority of conventional oil and natural gas wells ... with low production rates, with increases for high-production wells.

The Panel proposes retaining ... the base royalty rate ... at 1% ... [increasing to] 33% ... after project costs have been recovered.

Are any of these points made in the nightly news? Nope, the talking heads (industry shills) all imply the government has turned communist.

The royalty review wants to move our royalty regime to somewhere below Texas. As it exists now, we are something like 11th worst (or best, if you are Big Oil). If you compare Alberta to Norway (approximately same amount of people and production), they have $54 billion in their Petroleum Fund while Alberta's Heritage Fund is at about $12 billion. Disgraceful.

Remember, it is our oil. If we don’t extract it now, we can extract it in 10 years, when prices are even higher. Most of the ownership of these oil and gas companies is foreign , so profits made don’t stay in Alberta but go out the window.

Some points to consider:
- Alberta’s economy is superheated. From March 2006 to March 2007, Alberta inflation surged to 5.5 pc, more than double the national average of 2.3 pc.
- Housing prices are crazy. The average house price in Calgary is $485,914. The vacancy rate is near zero. The U.S. went down this road, and we all know how it ends.
- Many oil sand projects are soaring over budget due to cost overruns (read salaries and materials).

All these things would be helped by cooling down the investment in the oil sands.

As far as “broken promises” go, this issue has been talked about for years. Read Liberal MP, Kevin Taft’s 1997 book "Shredding the Public Interest". He raised the alarm about how we were “giving it away” back then, so comments of "we were blindsided" are b.s.

[Disclosure: I work for a consulting firm for the Natural Gas industry.]

Greed will help mitigate peak oil.

I agree. That's why we aren't already drilling the continental shelf and ANWR.

The article about reducing mercury in CFLs was interesting, but I had always thought that in the long term lighting would probably be with white LEDs and not CFLs.

A few weeks ago, I bought a headlight for my bicycle that uses white LEDs and rechargeable batteries. I got a deal on it as it was last year's model that they were trying to unload - based upon the specs, the older LEDs in that model get something like 20 lumens/watt. But on the bicycling forums, people are already talking about replacing the bulbs with newer bulbs that get about 60 lumens/watt (and those bulbs are about 10$/pc on an internet site). So for my bike light, 20$ and a little time with a soldering iron, and I can get nearly 3 times the light (probably ~500 lumens total).

Of course the easy way to get the newer bulbs is to buy this year's model of headlight, but what's the fun in that?

Manufacturers are reporting that in R&D labs, they have white leds that get something like 150 lumens/watt, and I have heard speculation that 200 lumens/watt may be possible. In fact, a few weeks ago, I saw a direct 60-watt lightbulb replacement that used white LEDs, and the claim was that it consumed only 8 watts of electricity (~125 lumens/watt). This was the first time I have ever seen one at any price. I asked the sales guy at the booth what it would cost, and the price is around 100$. They don't really list it in their catalog yet - price needs to come down before it makes any sense to try and sell these things.

To put this in perspective, a 60 watt lightbulb is around 1000 lumens, so it gets about 16 lumens/watt. A CFL of the same size is about 50 lumens/watt (normal flourescents do better than this however.

Just to put this in perspective, if you had some hypothetical device that converted 100% of electrical energy to white (well, err, green, actually) light and generated no heat, you would have about 680 lumens/watt.

There is a table here:


that gives numbers for other types of lighting.


Just to put this in perspective, if you had some hypothetical device that converted 100% of electrical energy to white (well, err, green, actually) light....

Curious, why are you saying that the light is 'green". What light are your referring to and why is it "green".

Thanks for the info. I was online checking prices a month or so ago. Still to high imo for home use when comparing electricity cost from use against CFL. I have a few for special use like in flashlights or bike lights because the advantage also from "abuse". You can drop a LED and it has a good chance of still working, drop any other light 'bulb" and see what happens ehh.


The reference to green light is a reflection of the fact that the lumen, the brightness unit in the lumens/watt efficiency calculation, is weighted for the photic sensitivity of the human eye, which is highest in the green region of the spectrum for a variety of reasons (primarily denser innervation of the retina by green sensitive photosites).

Thus pure green LEDs will always rank highest in the lumens/watt rankings, all else being equal.

Most white LEDs at this point generate light through the action of phospors (much like fluorescent lights), so the efficiency race involves tradeoffs between color rendition fidelity (roughly, how well the emitted spectrum matches the spectrum of a blackbody in stimulating the retina after striking common surfaces) and efficiency. Advances in lumens/watt, then, come from four main areas:

1) Improvements in phospor chemistry (peak rare earths anyone?)
2) Improvements in semiconductor technology in the LED die
3) Improvements in optics and packaging
4) Improvements in power supply/conversion/LED drive efficiency.


Thanks Ethan,

Thats why I asked, he was referring only to the LED's, not the other forms.

Though I do have a question again. I work as a DP and knowing the spectrum output of various fixtures is a must. LED's are new and some are being used as a source, mainly video, though film could be a choice, but tests have not been good enough for the big boys to place their blessing on them. Video, is a different matter. Color correction and capture are easier, cheaper, and other factors having to do with industry allow it to be used in "video".

Though I think the way the human eye will see the light is not as much a concern as it is for a form of capture of that light. Reproduction of spectrum frequency is harder than just seeing color as a human.

The human eye and brain work together to determine proper color. If you were to see the way ugly green fluorescents make green grocery store produce look, without your brain making it look "correct", grocery stores would have put in better spectrum light long ago.

Its hard for an untrained eye to see the difference in the color of white "light" that has enough of the spectrum for your mind to adjust things for you. Sodium vapor is an example (lacking tons of spectrum, and look orange if you look directly at them, but if you look at your "paper" it will still look white to you) as are the el cheapo fluorescents used in most stores. They have a very green tint to them. On video and film the green will show in various ways.

I can generally now look and make a decent guess as to is in many places, and there are tricks to allow you see what color you think it is, but a meter is the only way to tell.

All the reasons above (your post) are why film DP's are not rushing to LED use. NOT that there could not be a need because of production, and they would be a choice.

Would be great if LEDS did a better job in spectrum, HMI lights are bulky, expensive, and hot, but they do a great job of reproducing the spectrum of sunlight. Carbon Arcs are even better, but jeesh what a hunk of stuff and operator (have to feed the carbon some on old lights).

Pure green light and the human eye, lol, I think our brains would correct it eventually. Green light, think horror movie.

Sensitivity of color. Well, this could be a long discussion, because our sensitivity to light is based on gray scale for sake of argument. From white to pure black and the number of gradients White to gray to black. Color "sensitivity" and the eye and brain seems to me a very hard thing to calculate. Women see color's in a more vivid range than men. Many men are color blind to various degress, but their sensitivity to light is basically the same.

our eyes are sensitive to color, but need enough light to make the cones work. If there is not enough light you are going to see shades of gray, Blue is the last color you see before there is not enough "light". Why the use of "blue" is used on films tv to make you think its night. Its subtle though this last "blue" you see is noticeable if you look.

Spectrum and sensitivity seem like two different matters, but I am not an expert.

I did some googling to understand about how LED are made, and its not real clear to me yet.

white light, and from experience its closer to 5600k. They don't make them for 3200K (3200K is tungsten and 5600K is daylight for film and video camera's and correction is made by a "filter" for video, or filter or film stock for film camera's.)

Carbon arc is a pretty good blackbody; LEDs and fluorescents are anything but blackbody. You'll always have metamerism to some degree with the latter.

I spent a buck at King Dollar for a Chinese LED penlight. Not too impressive, but I intend to tape it to a visor cap (probably also a buck) as a personal headlamp. This is based on a recommendation from a website of an Argentinian college instructor who survived the collapse of the economy there.

He also had some paragraphs about his personal firearms and how not to get kidnapped in the city. Scary.

How about a link for the site?

Not sure it is the same one


If you consider that it used to be more like Europe, the average education level was higher and historically there had been few class and no racial issues, it gives you a good idea of what it might look like here when it comes.

Yes the diaries from the Man about his life after the currency collapse in Argentina (with his wife) are a good read.

The staging of fake auto accidents using old women, babies, etc, shows how desperate people will become. If you stop, your dead. according to his experience. He never left home without a weapon.

Go to www.frugalsquirrels.com and use the forum search tab to find his posts by entering his ID, Ferfal.
As I understand it, he is a regular guy, middle class type who posted a lot about how he survived Argentina's inflationary meltdown.
You'll have to do the free registration but it is interesting reading.


Thank you for finding that link. It's been two years since I've been there and I'd forgotten the address. And oh what changes these two years have wrought.

After reading this I went to Google to check to see if Ferfal had collected his essays at another non-registration site.

Instead, I found these remarks from him on why he doesn't post at Frugal Squirrels anymore.


And yes, I was a Mod at Frugal's.
When Catholics got attacked I checked with John and his reply to me was that Catholicism was, and I quote, “unacceptable with even a casual reading of the scriptures.” and he also said that we where going to hell. Seemed very sure about it, as if he had the power to make that decision himself.
I double checked with him via email, after asking him in the Mod forum. Same reply, about two lines long. After years of contribution, that’s all the respect I got from him.
Then, I asked to be removed from the “Team Frugal” ( moderator) since I didn’t feel comfortable with belonging to such a team since I found out what it meant. Not only did I get removed form the “Team”, which I asked, but I got my account erased and unable to reregister as a bonus as well( isn’t that called banned? ).
I can’t help to feel a bit of guilt thought, should have left earlier when I saw all the racism going on. During the Catholic bashing days, a black lady member said that she constantly read racist remarks on Fruglas.
A moderator ( one of the wise “behinds”) had the nerve to ask her to list those threads.
The lady replied to the post five minutes later with a dozen racist post she found, all posted in the last week. I wanted to puke, felt so ashamed.
As a Mod, I did my best to stop the racism going on there, only to get told to shut up.
This is a waste of band, but I’m SURE someone will post right after me, saying it’s all a lie. If anything good can come out of this, is for honest, good people to know what FS is all about.
I once replied to one of the many racist posts against blacks, calling it for what it was, to what John Maniatti, the owner of Frugal’s, replied:


"FerFAL, I have enjoyed your posts over the last year however you are not qualified to speak into this situation. Race is a major issue in our nation that needs to be discussed in a rational manner. The 'black' culture is a disproportionate part of the miseries this nation finds itself in. The proof is in the stats and the problem is only getting worse. The reasons are irrelevant as it can't be changed in our political system. So take a deep breath and let us work through one of our Republics' major problems.

Thank you."


However, Ferfal has recently resurfaced at a new survivalist site and perhaps will resurrect his old material:


Apparently it was quite a shock for him to realize that the socialists he criticized in Argentina were right about the awfulness of America's racist self-worship. One of the things that bothers me about survivalist sites, and Rense/Infowars/What Really Happened, and sometimes The Oil Drum, is that collapse is seen by the most extreme right-wing property-worshipping freaks as the fault of there being too many "inferiors" around, and an opportunity to return to Mississippi circa 1850. I volunteer to be post-Peak John Brown, bloody sword and all.

I just registered for FrugalSquirrels but after hearing this I will never use the account. My ancestors came here to get away from the violent Catholic/Protestant debate and I'm not even going to say which side they were on - there is simply no room for that sort of behavior in this country.

I have been registered at frugal squirrels for a year or so. I plan to leave a note in support of FerFal and unregister also.

My one big complaint with the peak oil community is that it has yet to understand Deferred Production. (by no means the same as unused capacity).

Some market players do make decisions (ostensibly for a large variety of reasons) that result in lower production now with the certainty that the resource will be developed at some point in the future.

If the world is perceived to be at peak, the incentive for this behaviour will be much stronger than in the past when only local peaks were at issue.

This is a dead certainty from an economics perspective. And it is new. It won't be evident until the global peak is in view.

Deferred Production may not be large but until we attempt to measure it, we won't know. If it is big, than CERA is correct about the shape of our future, even if they get the 'height' wrong. A downward sloping plateau.

How do you think the deferred production will be used? Do you think the producers will be certain to make sure that the US continues to get its 25% of the world supply, even though it cannot pay for it? Won't countries use it in whatever way it benefits themselves most - either directly, or to trade with countries who actually have some needed real exports to trade?

Yes. Producers will use deferred production for whatever way it benefits themselves most.

One of those ways might be to buy food (which the US exports on truly massive scale). Pharmaceuticals, technology, arms .....

But, in general, the US economy is extremely adaptive and has its fingers in every pie. The tendency going forward -- no matter how crappy the local economy is -- will be to focus on those things that have value in the world markets and can yield revenue to buy oil.

Peak oil will likely bring a severe recession to the US but that doesn't mean the economy stops transforming and adapting. It will grumble about the price, but the US will have plenty to offer.

Gail, I would add that the US has an extremely disciplined and hard working labour force compared to most of the world This dedication to hard work looks insane to Europeans and even to Canadians like myself (and we -- at least we Torontonians -- are basically junior Americans in this respect).

With the falling dollar, you are getting cheaper every day. Look for a revival in exports.

Asebius: American products are considered to be inferior in quality (by Americans themselves).Given a choice, the American consumer will choose to buy Japanese or German products because the American consumer feels that American products are subpar. The American workforce puts in a lot of long hours because, IM0, the culture of consumption and debt makes it an absolute necessity for most.

The old communist line applies perfectly to the American worker.

"They pretend they pay us, we pretend to work"

The only Americans making things work are all self employed.

We are hard-working at hype and propaganda. We are hard-working when our bosses are watching. We are hard-working because we're drowning in debt and we've been trained to blame ourselves for our falling real wages, unlike our more sensible union-joining forefathers.

We're suckers and whores, and we have no skills of use in a sustainable world.

Bob Black - "Workers of the world, relax."

My one big complaint with the peak oil community is that it has yet to understand Deferred Production. (by no means the same as unused capacity).

Not so! The subject has been discussed many times on this list and I think we understand it very well. Except of course we referred to it as "hording". But a kinder term has also been used, also many times. That term was "husbanding their oil." Many nations are already doing it and the practice will accelerate as peak oil becomes more obvious.

This is a dead certainty from an economics perspective. And it is new. It won't be evident until the global peak is in view.

Oh but it is in view Asebius, just check your rear view mirrow. Please don't get me wrong, I am not belittling the effect of "deferred production", hoarding, husbanding, or whatever you prefer to call it. My point is that this will exacerbate a very bad situation, it will not help it in the least. As countries cut back on production, saving it for themselves, this will cause the decline to be much steeper.

Ron Patterson

My point is that this will exacerbate a very bad situation, it will not help it in the least. As countries cut back on production, saving it for themselves, this will cause the decline to be much steeper.

If the husbanding, hoarding, deferring of production happens in earnest now, (and there is evidence that it is) it's a good thing, because we are rich enough to absorb it now.

Deferred production still comes to the world market. It just does so in the future.

I'm with Stuart Staniford on the net exports thing. Producers' domestic consumption won't rise inexorably and exponentially. Countries need to trade and they will trade a decent chunk of their deferred production for the zillion other goodies they want.

Deferred production still comes to the world market. It just does so in the future.

Well, it eventually comes to the market but not necessarily the world market. If Mexico started to cut back on production, and then brought that production to market five or ten years from now, it would be only to the Mexican market. There would be a revolution in Mexico, and many other nations, if their leaders sold oil to the US while their own people had little or no oil for themselves.

It would be in anyone's own interest to hoard their oil. If a nation normally exported 2 million barrels per day, but oil prices doubled because of scarcity, then they could export 1 million barrels per day and have the same income. The higher the price of oil goes, the less tempted any nation will be to drain its own resources.

When all nations become aware that we are indeed post peak, they will realize that the price of oil can only increase. They will hold back on production causing prices to rise even higher, and the decline in world production and especially exports, to drop dramatically. And when the oil does finally come on the market, it will be extremely expensive and perhaps they can only stop an insurrection by discounting it to their own people.

Were we a rational society, a virtue of which we have rarely
been accused, we would husband our oil and gas resources.
- M. King Hubbert

Ron Patterson

Great Hubbert quote, Ron.

It's not so much that any country (like Mexico) would simply grab oil from the locals and sell it to hungry importers.

As prices rise, producing governments will find that they can benefit their people more by selling the barrel on the world market than by letting a couple of local dudes fill their tanks on the cheap. Iran and Venezuela have already taken steps to curb local consumption.

The odd riot? Sure, as we have seen. Revolution, less likely in my view, especially if oil profits are put to good work or the proper palms are greased.

Under your view producing countries are at the complete mercy of their people and, as oil rises, are forced to pay them more and more for their cooperation. I doubt this. The populace can be persuaded, tricked, cajoled, bought off, intimidated and incented by a variety of means to curb consumption.

When crude is at $200, do you think Chavez is going to piss it away for 40 cents a gallon in the countryside? Nope. I'll bet he's already making grand plans for that windfall and the locals will find they can do with less.

[duplicate deleted]

I'm with Stuart Staniford on the net exports thing. Producers' domestic consumption won't rise inexorably and exponentially.

Over the production decline period, Indonesian consumption increased at about +4.1%/year. The UK increased at +0.2%/year. Indonesian net exports crashed to zero in eight years, seven years for the UK.

I think you misunderstand, WT. These consumption increases coupled with production decreases all occurred in the 'magical' land of never ending oil production. Once its obvious to everyone else that oil DID peak in 2005, you can damn well be the producing countries will snuff out all consumption growth, if not dramatically cut back to take advantage of the times.

One problem, initially at least the cash flows from declining export volumes will be increasing, because of higher oil prices.

The point about the UK and Indonesian case histories is that the almost zero UK increase in consumption had no real effect on crashing net exports.

Right, but your assuming that Canada, Venezuela, KSA and other countries have all 'peaked' and are now in decline. We dont know that to be the case on any of these three countries.

Once its obvious to everyone else that oil DID peak in 2005, you can damn well be the producing countries will snuff out all consumption growth, if not dramatically cut back to take advantage of the times.

That is, unless their E&P sectors require increasing amounts of oil and gas to access and pull out the 2nd halves of their (harder to find and harness) reserves. The declining net energy treadmill speeds up irrespective of what the consumers use

Ron, many times we have lumped 'husbanding resources' into the catch-all phrase 'and other above ground factors.' I think this makes sense because as PO unfolds there will be many above ground factors that we are not aware of at present. I believe that WTs ELM will continue to evolve as these above ground factors come into play...imho.

Three headlines on Drudge today. Notice a recurring pattern here?

Oil Briefly Spikes Above $92 a Barrel

Dollar Sinks to New Low...


There is no correlation, there is nothing to see here, move on, MOVE ON!

It's OK. The people who look at these numbers know the truth, even if they don't speak it.

~Durandal (http://www.wtdwtshtf.com/)

If gold is at the same nominal price as it was 28 years ago then according to the gold bugs we have not had any inflation since 1979.

Or said differently, gold has underperformed SP500, milk, and Froot Loops, etc. But perhaps not for long...

UN Global Environmental Outlook 4

The speed at which mankind has used the Earth’s resources over the past 20 years has put "humanity’s very survival" at risk, a study involving 1,400 scientists has concluded.
The environmental audit, for the United Nations, found that each person in the world now requires a third more land to supply his or her needs than the Earth can supply.
Times Online

The BBC has a link in their article to the original UN report

I disagree with this part of the 'de-industrial age' article.

To use that same girder in a deindustrial age, by contrast, takes only a hacksaw to chop it into workable parts, a wagon to haul it away, and a blacksmith’s hammer, anvil, and charcoal-burning forge to transform it into nails, knives, plows, saws, firearms, and a thousand other useful things. Furthermore, the economics of metalworking in a nonindustrial society make this a very attractive proposition, since one fifty-foot girder of ordinary structural steel will keep a village blacksmith supplied with raw materials for a substantial period of time.

he makes a fatal assumtion that all steel is the same. there are differnt qualitys and grades depending on the impuritys added or removed during the smelting of the ore. in this case sky scrapper structual grade steel will take a hotter fire then a charcoal fed forge to get it soft enough for a human to pound it into something more usefull. Some car and applience grade steel though is better suited.

Hardly a fatal assumption. I doubt anyone who plans to take steel away in a horse drawn cart will choose the Empire State Building as a starting point. There will be plenty of Walmarts to choose from.

Just a few miles from my cottage there are two such "abandoned" stores side-by-side. A Costco and a Zellers (Target-like store). Theoretically, they are available for lease, but the poplars are starting to take over the parking lots.

Sorry but it actually is. Like in your example of a wallmart. the interconnects between the main gurders maybe but the large ones they need to support those big roofs without allot of support pillars are out of the question. same grade of steel as the high rises.

A good general rule of thumb to work by is to look into the past and see how and what quality of steel was made /before/ the industrial revolution took hold. which was mostly low to the rare peice of mid quality steel either with high or low carbon content. the other impuritys added or removed to create modern steel was beyond their means or knowledge.

Peak Swords?

No, it just means swords will be made of iron, bronze, or made in a makeshift fashion from sharpening thin strips of steel. Depending on where you live.

Nonsense, it just takes some jet fuel and it melts like butter.

Well, yeah. Unfortunately, jet fuel is going to be in short supply.

IMO, people don't understand how much energy is needed to work metal (and glass), and how much we take it for granted.

I wish I could find the link again; it was a web site put up by a SCA blacksmith. He wanted to use firewood, but found it was impossible. It took a ridiculous amount of wood to forge a sword. That's why good blades were not for the peasants.

Glass has been made for thousands of years, but it was for the privileged only. They even used to remove the glass windows from the castle when the lord was away.

Now we throw glass away as trash.

It isn't fuel that we lack, its the knowledge to use it wisely. There are places in China that have dragon kilns - a big funnel facing the wind with the firing chamber at the narrow end. I have heard references to them being used to do metal casting but a quick Google only shows ceramic efforts. The principle should work though - build a nice wind catcher, funnel the output into your forge, and watch the temperature rise.

It's actually both. before the modern industrial method of making steel, blacksmiths could make low quality stuff in very small amounts. A skilled one could make average quality but it would still be poor compared to the high quality stuff that even sits idle in your driveway.

it took months for some to make quality swords and armor in meddle ages Europe. So quality swords if swords at all were limited to the lord's and their knights. the lords got the armor we typically attribute to a knight while the actual knights got chain mail of iron.

it was a similar situation in japan a Japanese sword smith in the old days would take as much as half a year if not longer if they end up making a mistake. modern steel production methods have cut this to a few months.

the common foot soldier in those days got either iron swords and no armor or studded leather. or they were pikemen or archers.

Metals that will be out of our reach to reshape for other uses in the point of the decline we are talking about are high quality steel, aluminum, titanium(sorry no new golf clubs), and any metal that needs temps higher then a charcoal fire to make it soft enough to work. low quality steel, iron, copper, bronze, tin, lead, etc will be fair game.

by the way if you actually searched, the dragon kiln was used to cast bronze a aloy of copper and tin. not make steel it could not reach the temps needed.

I saw an article on the dragon kiln long ago and did a quick Google on it before posting. I could find nothing but ceramic references.

You posit a world where there is no handling of metals requiring high temperature. Outside of combustion methods there is always the electric option - we'll do whatever it takes to keep those wind turbines running and I won't be surprised at all to see carbon arc taking over from fossil fuel forges if the need arises.

We're not forgetting everything when we take a step back ...

I think this guy is speaking of heat treating.

I can easily burn steel in a coal forge. Weld it as well.
I have seen a blacksmith make a very nice shoe from bar stock in less than 15 minutes and far faster if he wished or was in a contest. Forging is not slow. I can make a fire poker in two heats and with a round hole for the handle, a sharpened end with a 90 degree hook.


As a blacksmith let me add that I think charcoal can suffice.

Though I have never made and used it I could have but coal is plentiful...the rub with coal is that not all coal will allow one to do forge welding, due to many impurities.

A lot of energy to work metal? I don't think so...

I can build a fire and once it starts coking can heat a horsehshoe to cherry red very very fast..faster than a guy with an oxy/act torch can, unless he has a rosebud tip but I still might beat him.

And you simply bank the fire as needed..you save up your work, build a fire and then forge away..I could do work on a forge that other with oxy/act could not do..for instance a farm neighbor asked me if I could straighten the pto shaft driving his bush hog..a large long round piece of heavy steel...with a proper fire I was able to heat a large area easily(try that with a torch) then with a very small amount of force take the bend out. Worked fine and took less than 15 minutes once my forge fire was ready.

Few realize just how fast a good smith can forge a complete horseshoe. I have seen contests that were amazing and the results far exceeded storebrought cold shoes.

My neighbor near my horse farm in Lexington,Ky was a master farrier in the area(horse country). I attended Abana conferences.

The skill and tools can be made. A blacksmith is the only trade where you can bootstrap your self upward..even make anvils..and all your tools.

Swords are a different thing..swordsmiths have to be able to temper the metal. Blacksmiths as well. You do not need metallurgically refined steel just to make a sword.

To many cheap cheesy knifes made of stainless have invaded the marketplace. The older stuff was far better.

Damascus has been rediscovered and some make some extremely nice blades with it.

airdale-it takes a good grade of coal to forge weld BTW..yet the poor grades are sufficient for most work..just take out the clinkers ..use the better for quality when needed.

Wow - I didn't know people still did that sort of thing. Do you have a digital camera? Pictures of your setup?

Damascus steel has been the holy grail for along time. There was an article about it in Scientific American here in the last few years - seems the addition of vanadium is required to achieve what those ol' boys did with it, and it must be hand worked. If forget the particulars but I did recall the guy who sorted it out was from Iowa State - here is a link to get those interested started ...


Well it might not be the exact method or ingredients as ye olden dayse damascus but its really just soft metal and hard metal combined...

You can take a cable choke or spare piece of cable..like is used for tying barge tows...leave it twisted and start flattening it..then doubling back like the samurai sword makers til you get a proper billet...and then forge your blade ..the intermix of various steel and the rest make for some very interesting damascus patterns..I saw plenty at the recent Knife and Gun show.

Todays bladesmiths sometimes test their blades by inserting in the jaws of a vise..then bend them at a 90 degree angle and they need to return to their original form...now most of my Blade magazines are still packed in boxes so I can't totally verify this but I think many of them make the claim.

A guy named Hirsolous(close by not quite right spelling) was a bladesmith who was masterful at the forge.Jim I think..slips my mind right now. But if you check the current bladesmithing out you will find some still prefer the forge and hammer and anvil while many have built their own propane forges with no use of coal or coke. They can then do far more as far as precison heating and even do forge welding. I have watched some...but myself I prefer the smell of a good fire in the forge..and hand cranked Buffalo blowers..that allows for a lot of control. As well as exactly how one builds the fire.

Abana is the organization to check..check their website.

airdale-my digital camera died from electronics failure some time back..my barn workshop is a mess due to moving..I can hardly walk thru it. Besides I sold 8 of my best anvils and three forges and all my blacksmith leg vises at an auction 4 years ago. A huge mistake ..then I let a buddy have one temporary..my best forge and anvil and the sucker sold it...after 50 yrs of friendship I told him to never see or call me again. I still have a few but my coal supply was taken by the Amish who bid in my biggest forge. I have struck a blow in some years. Well that will change this coming year. The upcoming SHTF event tells me that blacksmithing will be very valuable and in my home county there is not a single one left who can do it but me.

PS. Now I have to order or build me a new forge..maybe just the pot and tyre and build the rest of fire brick as a permament forge in my shop.

What about a coke furnace?

Some junk yards still have 'leaf spring suspension' from the rear axles of older autos and trucks. Leaf springs are excellent for fabricating into all manner of tools, and they are small enough to carry away from the site, no horse and wagon needed.

Leaf springs are excellent for fabricating into all manner of tools

Been the Tuareg way of making swords since the beginning of 20th century.
Still in use

I have a hand made Katana forged in Tibet from Mercedes Benz leaf springs. Not the most pretty sword around, but it holds a good edge and is extremely durable.

On CNBC this morning, Melissa Francis's interview with a trader at the NYMEX was full of references to the fact that there was a major world oil supply problem, both from the danger of an Iraqi cutoff of oil through Turkey and the fact that KSA probably cannot increase production enough to meet the demand and other destabilizing factors. In fact, reference was made to the expected 2mbpd deficit in the supply as if it were simply fact.

The trader stated that he thought the current $91.17 price was pushed there by speculators, and the base price should be something like $70. BTW, the trader also said if something happens this weekend, the price on Monday will break $100.

It is strange to me how there is such a big difference in this price premium in the face of the admission all the way around of such a shortage in supply. My immediate thought is that everyone involved in this commentary has the belief (faith?) that this shortage must be temporary, and soon (not sure when) the supply will come back to meet the growing demand, wiping out all those nasty speculators.

Hearing such a discussion (albeit low-key and in the periphery) about the current supply deficient was surprising and heartening; seeing such a strong belief that the shortage would go away was disheartening. But maybe the net is a plus: some progress is being made in getting the message out.

Sam Penny
the Prudent RVer

He thinks it's $70 without speculators because during the rout in August, when all the speculators were deleveraging and diving headfirst into T-bills, the price dipped down to just below $70.

But inventories weren't as tight back then, and there wasn't so much pent-up demand. Plus, it was the time in the season when even speculators were expecting the price to come down. Also, $70 was before the Fed's 1/2 percent rate cut and the devaluation of the dollar that followed. So, no way it's still $70.

More recently when the market was diving and the weak money was shaken out, the price went down about $5. In a worse panic, it would probably have dropped by about $8. Call it $10.

But so what? Speculators are a legitimate part of the market. And if the commercial traders had more conviction that prices were too high, they could sell the future price down. But they aren't selling it down the way they did in August, because they aren't that stupid. They're worried about supply too.

An extremely doomerish article posted on Financial Sense:

The Downward Trend Is Unstoppable by J. R. Nyquist

Once a downward motion begins it is sustained by something akin to momentum. Civilization has climbed so high that any stumble must be fatal. Much of what unfolds will be made possible by false thinking and the spread of false ideas. We have the accumulated wisdom of great economists and political thinkers to fall back upon. But we have neglected their works. We have grown superficial and stupid in our prosperity, adopting policies that guarantee catastrophe.

It is madness, all madness. It continues, it unfolds and nobody can arrest its progress.

Resource depletion rears its head in Dear Abby:

DEAR ABBY: I have a big problem. My sister keeps telling me not to use a lot of water because in the future my great-grandchildren are not going to have enough water. Now I feel like I should never have sex because I do not want my great-grandchildren to suffer.

Yeah, I know I am only 13, and I am already thinking about my children. Should I just forget it or never have children? Please, I need your help! -- WHAT ABOUT THE FUTURE, ROCKFORD, TENN.

It's sad, tragic even, that people can't do what they were designed by evolution to do - have sex and make more humans - without causing an even bigger tragedy.


I find her answer funny. 'a person at your age should not be thinking about not having sex' and 'devote your energys to try to think of new ways of creating drinking water'

Is Alan Drake Dear Abby?

so wall st is higher because of microsoft and Countrywide Financial:



Countrywide financial post a $1.2Bl dollar loss - BUT wait for it folks because they see a trurnaround everyone is happy and the dow is up!


And everyone went to bed all happy in LA LA land!!


I heard that story about Countrywide this morning and nearly fell off my chair.

The MSM can twitter, flitter, and blather all they'd like, but Countrywide is still king of the impending doom mountain over at ml-implode.


SCT, I caught that baloney about the 4Q prediction by Countrywide and FOMALOL. Well, yeah they might dredge up enough cash to pay the investors some dividend pennies...but at what cost to the Countrywide portfolio of bad mortages? Are they going to mark that garbage to market? I dont think so. They might unload some of it at very steep discounts to raise enough $ for a 4Q profit, but then what happens in 1,2,3,4Q 2008? Anything to stave off the day of reckoning for one more quarter.

The loss has already occurred.

They haven't fessed up yet, but the damage is already done. Are they holding out, hoping for a Christmas miracle? That seems to be the consensus. After that we'll enter a last man standing contest. The mortgage industry can't totally die so someone will end up with a win, but the question is who. One would think the slow moving, conservative ones of the crowd ... but are there any of those left? I guess we shall see.


From the article above titled:

"'This is like a highway with no cops and no speed limit'"

I noticed the line that says:

"World oil demand has stabilized at about 85 million barrels a day."

Now, has the "demand" stabilized, or, is the world "supply" 85 million barrels a day?

Me thinks the latter. Isn't the march toward 100 bucks proof?

If stable means the following then yes it has stabilised:

1) price going hyperbolic.
2) many poorer countries round the world unable to buy fuel
3) EIA prdicting +1.7MBD demand growth in the face of static supply???!!??
4) Unreported inflation increasing rapidly.
5) rapid Dollar depreciation

Yep, stable as the Greenland ice sheet!!


EIA prdicting +1.7MBD demand growth in the face of static supply???!!??

The likes of EIA and IEA make predictions of what supply has to be in order for business to continue as usual in OECD countries.

If supply is less than the increasing amount required for exponential growth then the price will rise ... and business will not continue as usual somewhere in the world ... usually in part of the world that can least afford to pay the higher price ... and probably not an OECD country going by recent experience!


Thanks xeroid. My ???!!?? was a shorthand version of what you have kindly clarified!


Farmers brace for decade-low wheat harvest


THE forecast size of the NSW grain crop has been cut by a further 40 per cent due to dry, hot and windy weather this month and last month.

The NSW Grain Report, published yesterday by the Department of Primary Industries, is predicting a harvest in coming months of just 2.8 million tonnes, compared with a mid-September estimate of 4.67 million tonnes.

Not good!

Bloomberg has a story as well:

"We actually have a shortage of wool because of the drought and because of the decreased sheep flock," said Australian Wool Growers Association chairman Martin Oppenheimer. "We're in a supply squeeze, so the high dollar is not having the impact we would expect." Australian Grain Exporters Association president Robert Green also said the drought was curbing the impact of the stronger dollar.

"We don't have much grain to export, but it certainly is having an impact on prices in the world market," Mr Green said.

From: http://www.theage.com.au/news/business/rate-expectations-send-aussie-dol...

...in its June crop report, said NSW was looking at a record grain harvest of 11.44 million tonnes.

Really not good. So much for the whole biofuels thing - AGW is going to drive events like this often enough to make it politically problematic, if not operationally so.

This is for all you Yanks who think you have nothing to trade for oil!

Up here in Canada, we have no Iphones and it hoits like friggin' hell.

Maybe we can work out some form of "Oil for X" deal. Meanwhile, we suffer endlessly. :-)

Wars May Cost $2.4 Trillion Over Decade

Wednesday October 24, 2007 8:01 PM


Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) - Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan could cost as much as $2.4 trillion through the next decade, according to a new analysis Wednesday that the White House brushed off as ``speculation.''

The analysis, by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, provides the most comprehensive and far-reaching estimate to date, taking into account costs previously not counted and assuming large number of forces would remain in the regions.

According to CBO, the U.S. has spent about $600 billion to date on both wars, including $39 billion in diplomatic operations and foreign aid.

If the U.S. cuts the number of troops deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan to 75,000 six years from now, it would cost the U.S. another $1 trillion for military and diplomatic operations and $705 billion in interest payments to pay for the wars through 2017...[more of the story at the link].


What could we do with 2.4 trillion dollars?

*We could manufacture 9.6 BILLION bicycles (assuming a cost of $250 per bicycle). That's more than a bicycle for every person on the face of the earth.

*We could manufacture 4.8 BILLION laptop computers (assuming a cost of $500 per laptop computer). That's more than a laptop for every literate person on the face of the Earth. Want to foster security for our country? Give every single person in the world a laptop computer (you could even use those models that have the hand-powered crank for charging in the wilderness). Those will be some appreciative individuals.

*We could install 640 gigawatts of clean, reliable solar thermal (dual-cycle parabolic mirror/combustible) power generating capacity, which would amount to about 1/6th of the entire electricity consumption in the U.S. If all of this was used to replace coal powered plants, we could cut our use of coal by 40%. That would decrease global CO2 emissions by 7%.

*We could put 30 comprehensive rapid transit rail systems in the 30 largest cities in the U.S. (those that don't already have such systems), and connect them all together with a speedy long-distance passenger rail network (assuming $80 billion per rail network including regional links).

*We could just give (back) $8000 to every American citizen, or $360 to every human on the face of the Earth (which is more than many people earn in an entire year).

These are all my own calculations. For more calculations, visit costofwar.com .

Now, why don't WE decide on how we are going to spend our money? Why don't WE write the laws and appropriate the govt. budget? Because we have no power. What we need is real, active, direct democracy in all spheres of life that affect us.

Not if France has its way - Rummy being investigated.

He was dumb enough to actually go to France.

from reddit


Recipient of AA, Alberta Advantage

For a funny/sad comparison of the numbers Bush & Co. were talking about at the beginning of the war, check out:


"You can never solve a problem on the level on which it was created."
Albert Einstein

With apologies to Alan Drake:


The Chiapas-Mayab rail line was decommissioned this Summer, and it's left tens of thousands of illegals stuck at Mexico's southern border, unable to reach the US. The official guess - because no one has any real idea - is that two hundred people a day used the freight trains to cross Mexico on their way North: that's 70,000 per year. Now they're not even making it close enough to be a headache to the Border Patrol.

Best hopes for failing external rail lines, as our internal infrastructure is rebuilt.

That's an amazing story. The train has been shut down since July, and it's been widely reported...but people don't believe it. They think it's a lie, to keep them out of the country. They're sure the train will start running again on Monday, or that if they reach the next station, they'll find the train still runs there. It's irrational optimism incarnate.

Also interesting is the reason the train line has been shut down: crumbling infrastructure. Damaged bridges from a hurricane, and plain ol' old age.

And funny how the Mexico so is quick to deport illegal immigrants, while objecting to our doing the same...

Leanan, just reread Dahlgren after reading it about 30 years ago. Strange, but it is the one book that I have reread that I did not have a different take on after so many years. It is still great and still leaves one wondering after the read. It is still my favorite of sci fi novels...If it can be classified as such.

Our society has grown closer to the characters and events in Dahlgren and after the first read I thought that just the opposite would occur.

Also just finished 'Distraction' by Bruce Sterling. Someone on the board reccomended it a while back. Good read but not in the same league as Dahlgren. Thanks to who ever reccomended it. 'Distraction' is most amazing in its predictions considering its copyrite date of 1997. The politicians in 'Distraction' could have easily worked in the current administration or under Gonzales or Rummy. It is a hoot!

I'm delighted to find someone else has picked up Distraction :-) If you liked that one go track down Heavy Weather, which does for the weather what Distraction does for gulf coast politics :)

The Mexican consulate in New York City was bombed today.


Not much of a bombing - two dummy grenades with black powder, but still ... Mexico is coming apart.

Good thing your guv is strengthening the ties between Mexico and the USA.

The Mexicans have the gear to drill 3,000' below sea level, while we have the stuff to go 10,000'. Mexico allows no direct investment ... today ... but they're on the chopping block next. The methods will be different than Iraq but the outcome will be similar - a disaster for them and less oil for us than was hoped.

A new government report:

Impacts of Climate Change and Variability on Transportation Systems and Infrastructure: Gulf Coast Study

Relative sea-level in the study area is likely to increase at least 0.3 meter (1 foot) across the region and possibly as much as 2 meters (6 to 7 feet) in some parts of the study area. Relative sea-level rise (RSLR) is the combined effect of the projected increase in the volume of the world’s oceans (eustatic sea-level change), which results from increases in temperature and melting of ice, and the projected changes in land surface elevation at a given location due to subsidence of the land surface. The highest rate of relative sea-level rise will very likely be in the central and western parts of the study area (Louisiana and East Texas), where subsidence rates are highest. The analysis of a “middle range” of potential sea-level rise of 0.6 to 1.2 meters (2 to 4 feet) indicates that a vast portion of the Gulf Coast from Houston to Mobile may be inundated over the next 50 to 100 years. The projected rate of relative sea-level rise for the region is consistent with historical trends, other published region specific analyses, and the IPCC 4th Assessment Report findings, which assumes no major changes in ice sheet dynamics.

The significance of these climate factors for transportation systems was assessed. Warming temperatures are likely to increase the costs of transportation construction, maintenance, and operations. More frequent extreme precipitation events may disrupt transportation networks with flooding and visibility problems. Relative sea level rise will make much of the existing infrastructure more prone to frequent or permanent inundation – 25 percent of the major roads, 9 percent of the rail lines, and 72 percent of the ports are built on land at or below 122 centimeters (4 feet) in elevation. Increased storm intensity may lead to increased service disruption and infrastructure damage: More than half of the area’s major highways (64 percent of Interstates; 57 percent of arterials), almost half of the rail miles, 29 airports, and virtually all of the ports are below 7 meters (23 feet) in elevation and subject to flooding and possible damage due to hurricane storm surge.

PPT and our hard earned tax money at work. John

Dunno, kinda has me head-scratching too, I've been shorting the S&P and getting my ass handed to me.

Could be that it's simple inflation. To the extent humans think that stocks represent tangible wealth, any increase in the money supply might - all else being equal - just inflate it into going up.

The Zimbabwe market may be instructive.

Hell, gold is just sitting there inert and IT's going up. Could be the DOW could sit there inert and do the same thing.

Maybe someone who actually knows will post... I'm obviously losing my savings by being on the wrong side of a bet.

greenish from trading,

the market is set in the short run by the supply and demand for securities, not by the underlying fundamentals. All markets trend, due to many aspects of human nature. Most people want to buy low and sell high when in reality what works best is to buy high and sell higher, etc.

Being short this market is the right long term strategy - I would wait (and am) for it to start heading south before I get aggressive. The trend is your friend, until a new one starts.

Lots of people in your same boat which is why the market climbs a wall of worry - but most money managers are treating this as business as usual inflation when its anything but.

All of the money that the fed is creating has to go someplace. Look at the M3 line at shadowstats on the anual money supply groth graph.

Latest from Bloomberg:


As usual, read the title and then the article. You know what to do with this.

Crude Oil May Fall as OPEC Production Increases, Survey Shows
By Mark Shenk

Oct. 26 (Bloomberg) -- Crude oil may fall as members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries increase production and high gasoline pump prices curb fuel consumption.

Twenty-one of 43 analysts surveyed, or 49 percent, said oil prices will fall through Nov. 2, the least bearish response since Sept. 7. Eighteen, or 42 percent, said prices will rise, the most bullish response since the week ended July 6. Four forecast little change. Last week, 69 percent of respondents said oil would fall.

Energy Watch Group video on their Peak Oil Report - Oil Peaked in 2006


Hello TODers,

As you know, I have been flogging Peak Outreach and biosolar mission-critical investing on the Yahoo Finance POT-stock message board. My most recent posting for your consideration:

Are fertilizer certificates postPeak possible?
Thxs for reading TOD, EB, LATOC, and DIEOFF. TOD alone is rapidly approaching 400,000 visits/month as FF & mineral & biodiversity depletion becomes more obvious, Peak Outreach is spreading fast, and more and more people are moving to biosolar mission-critical investing in everything from bicycles, insulation, garden tools, seeds, etc, on up the spectrum to financial investments in photovoltaic panel stocks, windturbine stocks, and yes, even POT.

Gold at 28 year high, USD$ losing value, oil @ $92/bbl with $100 expected soon, grain prices skyrocketing. Nuclear Pakistan probably heading to civil war, Iran vs US looking grim, Turkey bombing Iraqi Kurds, global droughts & floods decimating food reserves, ice melting at record pace globally, oil experts saying Peakoil has basically arrived, 850 million go hungry, housing bubble deflating, etc, etc,--sorry, folks--but Reality is not looking too good at the moment, but feel free to disagree.

As posted before: you cannot eat money, nor can you eat gold, and depleting FFs are extremely nasty-tasting, but [NPK + water + topsoil] with a little sunshine sure can grow food--much more valuable than gold or diamonds as we go postPeak.

If you consider the Thermo/Gene progression of the trends listed above: what is POT worth if they postPeak offered 'Real-Value' dividends in the form of bags of NPK delivered to your garden or farm, or tradeable 'fertilizer certificates' that were immune to fiat currency flucuations or even currency collapse?

In fact, I believe these NPK bags and/or certificates would rise in value much faster than currencies would lose public value and credibility due to the FF-to-NPK energy-density release latency delays. Again, feel free to further elaborate or refute using detailed and well-reasoned arguments.

Never forget that the first currency was based on grains:

The origin of currency is the creation of a circulating medium of exchange based on a unit of account which quickly becomes a store of value. Currency evolved from two basic innovations: the use of counters to assure that shipments arrived with the same goods that were shipped, and later with the use of silver ingots to represent stored value in the form of grain. Both of these developments had occurred by 2000 BC. Originally money was a form of receipting grain stored in temple granaries in ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia.
IMO, NPK-based currency is even better because any potential purchaser has to be willing to postPeak add the required human-power labor to later photosynthetically 'cash-in' his purchase. This necessary labor calculation to reap the later harvest rewards would assure the value of NPK.

Bob Shaw in Phx,Az Are Humans Smarter than Yeast?
A little more thinking on this topic:

If your labor & skill is superior to others, plus a blessing by Mother Nature: you reap an even larger reward than most. Isn't this just like what we see on the Animal Planet Channel And National Geographic Specials: the most clever and energetic predator generally wins?

In short: could NPK-based currency or certificates end the parasitic practice of those who are always looking to get something-for-nothing?

Dig, sow, water, hoe weeds, then harvest to trade for more NPK. Former societal free-loaders would then have to rapidly learn farm and permaculture lifestyles if they wish to postPeak survive.

Paris Hilton: are you ready for biosolar mission-critical change?

Pardon if this article has been discussed before but i just finished reading a Peak Oil article from of all places the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland: http://www.clevelandfed.org/research/Commentary/2007/081507.cfm.

I thought it was very well written. What got me was that the author actually explained that Peak Oil is not about focusing on reserves but on production levels. The author did not take an overly optimistic or pessimistic view of the situation. Though you could argue he went out of his way not to be an alarmist.

It is nice to finally see more balanced Peak Oil coverage. Oh yea, the CNN international edition had the German Peak Oil study as a first level link on their homepage. The US edition skipped the story, at least I could not find it, altogether.

Good find!

Hello TODers,

US drought monitor not looking better:


Also, the US has 16,944 golf courses according to this link:

Public: 7955
Resort: 995
Private: 4256
Semi-Private: 3541
Military: 197
TOTAL = 16,944

Most of the 16,000 US golf courses, which
cover an area three times the size of Rhode Island, are
heavy users of insecticides, fungicides and herbicides, as
well as water, leading to toxic runoffs into local streams
(PSR Reports Staff, 1999).
The study singles out golf courses. The typical golf course uses enough water for a population of 6,000, the study said. Although many use recycled water, in some areas where there is not enough supply, the golf courses are sustained by fresh water drawn from local aquifers.
So for the US: 16,944 golf courses X 6,000 people = water for 101,664,000 people concentrated into a very small area with heavy pollution runoff just so a few can hit, then chase a little white ball.

I really wish I could somehow convince Tiger Woods & the PGA to plow-up Augusta National. It seems that there would be sufficient water for relocalized permaculture if we could jumpstart this change.

Bob Shaw in Phx,Az Are Humans Smarter than Yeast?

Golf courses create a lot of secondary demand for FF. Look at the vehicles for maintaining them, plus people in mid and upper income brackets that fly around the country to play at various notable courses. I have relatives that do that.
Why do the fairways need to be so weed free anyway? The courses should have flora that grows well in the particular climate, using less fertilizer and water. The course near my place of business had brown fairways this summer due to drought and main pumping station being out of commision for nearly a month. The grass around the warehouse buildings (never watered and mostly local weeds/grasses) stayed green.

Mark in St Louis, USA

The motion one uses to strike a golf ball is similar to the motion one uses manually cutting hay with a two handle scythe. Manual cutting for harvest ended many years before my time but we did use one of those things for clearing weeds in tight spaces around the farm. It is good to know I'll be able to get a former lawyer or stock broker with the requisite skill when the time comes ...

The motion for using a scythe is actually much different. The motion is more parallel to the ground. And uses far less effort. I have a European style scythe and if used properly it is fairly efficient at mowing hay. See:


Yer messin' with my game, brother :-( All of these finance type lurkers readin' this site need to start envisioning working for a living :-)

Shit I'm going to have to dig my scythe up..has a brand new handle and the blade is almost pristine..try it out..I have never used one..mine is pure American...Made In The USA..

It would seem that tall hay would be far easier than something short.I do have a surveryors weed hook though..real ugly looking piece of work. Would make a heck of a weapon...and who would want to face a double-bit axe?

This is the one I'm talking about. I went out and looked - it was where I hung it the last time I used it - I think that would have been 1983 or 1984 ...

I followed Bruce's link - very similar to the one shown there, but the handles of that one are towards the body, while these face away. I don't think there would be all that much difference in the grip.


Hello TODers,

Anybody planning a tourist trip to Swat Valley, Pakistan soon?

The sharp escalation of violence in the Swat valley, one of Pakistan’s most famous tourist spots and a region relatively removed from the lawless tribal areas on the Afghan border, has revealed the growing strength of Islamist extremists in the previously peaceful, more populated areas of the province.
Enjoy the ever popular tourist attractions and amusements such as:

Suicide bombers gaily demonstrating their skills in close proximity to your family.

The breathless dodging of heavy machinegun bulletfire and rockets from helicopter gunships.

Attend the must-see spectacular of multiple public executions by throat-cutting till the head is sawed free.

Free, free, free Bonus thrills from roadside AK47 & RPG attacks as your family vehicle wildly careens at a pulse-pounding pace through the city and countryside.

And just to make sure you are getting the maximum bang for your tourist buck in SWAT VALLEY: the ubiquitous, but totally random-landing artillery mortar shell to keep that ever popular, fear-soaked adrenaline rush absolutely floor-boarded as you cower in the corner of your hotel room.

Book your next family extravaganza ASAP, operators are standing by--Don't delay, Call today!!

Body bags not included, must be purchased separately.

Rant off/

Bob Shaw in Phx,Az Are Humans Smarter than Yeast?

Pakistan is going to blow. Not as soon as Mexico, but its an absolute certainty. The numbers are all over the board when one goes hunting with Google but they appear to have about 1/6th the fresh water per capita that we have in the United States.

88% of the water they do have comes through Punjab via the Indus river. This flow starts in happy, politically stable places like Kashmir and happy, climatically stable places like the Tibetan plateau.

Sooner or later we're going to see a fundamentalist Islamic government there in possession of nuclear weapons. This will come about on the back of a fed up, starving populace and no power on earth can stop it. I humbly submit that this is more scary than phantoms in Iraq, North Korea's nukes, and Iran and Syria pursuing nuclear weapons all put together.

Wall Street Journal Energy Blog: Cheney on the SPR

Vice President Dick Cheney said the 694-million-barrel stockpile of U.S. emergency oil reserves should be used to deal with supply disruptions, not to manage prices.

“Back in the Clinton administration, it was used to try to manage prices — that’s not what it’s for,” Cheney said in an interview with CNBC’s Larry Kudlow to air later Friday. “And we’ve recommended expanding the petroleum reserves…we think it’s important to do that.”

With oil prices above $90 a barrel, some analysts are questioning the administration’s policy of pumping 50,000 barrels a day into the stockpile, located in salt caverns in Texas and Louisiana. They say the oil would help lower prices if it were on the market.

Cheney said the stockpile is necessary in case of unrest in the Middle East. “It’s a classic case that we’re faced with right now, to the extent that you do get unrest or potential problems in the Middle East,” he said in the interview. “Our reliance on foreign sources of energy creates a certain vulnerability. The best short-term response we have for that is the Strategic Petroleum Reserve.”

Asked about the surging price of oil, Cheney declined to forecast a price-point that would tip the U.S. economy into recession, saying the U.S. has adjusted “very well” to rising energy prices.

Uhh...If Cheney believes 'the stockpile (spr) is necessary in case of unrest in the Middle East.'...why is he stirring up the hornets nest that is Iran? Why are we in Iraq? Why are we allowing the PKK to kill Turk troops, our NATO allies? Curious minds want to know.

Perhaps what Cheney meant to say was 'once we start a war with Iran we will need lots of oil in the spr because we will not get anything from the Middle East for a very long time and Chevez will not send us anything and the bombers in Mexico might become active again and the Nigerians keep kidnapping oil workers and those people in Aberta are making outrageous demands and...?

Your first paragraph is pretty good. The second one is a crock - you need to simplify it dramatically.

We need to start a war with Iran otherwise I, Dick Cheney, the biggest screw up ever in the realm of foreign policy, will not have a smoke screen to cover my sleazy, thieving ways

Is that better? The Bush administration acts for all the world like corporate executives who know they're going to declare bankruptcy but haven't yet been placed under the thumb of the creditor's committee. The twist, they turn, they make nonsensical assumptions about things that require negative interest rates and dilithium crystals, then a very weary judge finally says "No."

Who is going to tell them "No." ? How much longer must we wait?

Ancient Cheneyian proverb.

"If you light a man a fire he is warm for an evening if you set a man on fire he is warm for the rest of his life"

If you see a dusty car/van lorry, draw a bell curve in the dust with an arrow pointing to the top say "you are here"


If you see a dusty car/van lorry, draw a bell curve in the dust with an arrow pointing to the top say "you are here"

y'know, that could spread nicely. Though as graffiti it would be quicker and easier to do it without the printed words.. the bell and the arrow perhaps.

could catch on....

Wow! Just what we all need! A self appointed editor for our posts. Thanks.

Actually the second paragraph should have included a nod to AIPAC, but we all know that connection so why include it?

And, we already know that the entire administration is oil connected and that their oil pals and DC hangers on, like Kissinger, have profited greatly from their so called foreign policy. Why belabor the obvious?

The discussion was about the spr and why Cheney would bother to add to that stockpile at this particular time.

That's an odd policy given Cheney's insider view of the oil and foreign policy world. If he believed that oil disruptions were unlikely and that oil prices would soon trend downward, then of course he'd want to hold off for a while on expanding the SPR. On the other hand, if he believed the reverse, ...

This sure sounds like one of those "watch what I do, not what I say" things.


You never commented on my post about vetch being able to 'fix' 200-250 lbs of Nh3 per acre.

All the N is stored in the plant and not left in the soil..so leave is as residue on the ground or 'disk' it in to the upper layer...an amazing amount of Nh3 to me.and comes free from the air.

My further idea was to divide my garden into two plots..grow vetch on one side..next year switch sides...and one could also bale the vetch after its growth is finished and spread that one any area you needed Nh3 on. Since its locked in the plant parts you can transport it.


The point was that vetch grows 'volunteer' here on my farm. From when the oldtimers used it to bring up the nitrogen level in their tobacco plots. So its tiny seeds are everywhere..yet very easy to eradicate if in unwanted areas.

airdale-I am sure there are other old time means of improving land...just letting it sit idle will allow soil microbes to capture nutrients..perhaps more than N2.

Old farming books on Ag of the early 1900s is what am looking at for clues on the upcoming sustainable lifestyle I will be leading.

Hello Airdale,

Sorry for the late reply, but I have other responsibilities that take me away from TOD. Don't we all? =)

As a hopeless city-boy, bereft of any real estate, and where I am currently renting: I don't even have a chance to grow a tomato plant in a pot. Such is life.

Therefore, I gladly defer posted photosynthesis expertise to TODers such as you, Todd, and other longtime gardeners/farmers. I sadly realize that googling ag&NPK-info is woefully deficient to actually getting one's hands and knees into the dirt.

As Natgas-sourced Haber-Bosch nitrogen diminishes: I agree that we will have to go back to the time-proven method of crop rotation postPeak, then plowing or mulching the nitrogen-fixing plants to later provide nutrients for the next crop that we wish to harvest/mine/extract from the land.

Bob Shaw in Phx,Az Are Humans Smarter than Yeast?

Yes Bob,,

but think...200-250 lbs per acre!!!!!

To me astounding. We do not put that rate of Nh3 on a acre using intensive farming methods even.

If you are using urea or ammonia nitrate you get maybe 34 or 24..somewhere in that range ,,,of UNITs of Nh3 per pound spread..in other words the carrier is in there so we refer to it as 34 'units' of Nh3 in 100 lbs of 34-0-0 material/product.

So another way of looking at it is just how much Nh3 is being transported off the soil by them removing corn 'stover' for making bio fuels or ethanol?? Perhaps a huge amount. Corn does take a lot of Nh3 but it also returns a lot.

We are getting ready to take the residue off the ground and eat our very 'seed corn'..in other words shooting ourselves in the foot.

All the biononsense is just another grab at the land..for the VCs(venture capitalists) to get rich our others expense.

airdale--I don't care how they package it and say it helps the farmer..they are robbing the soil once more only this time for utter bullshit and cheap chinee trinkets for the yuppie and soccer moms to swoon over and later throw in the ditch.....where the hell is the anger? Where?


While it is possible to get 200 to 250 lbs of nitrogen per acre with vetch, in general you will get less, unless the seed has been inoculated with the correct species of bacteria. There are different types of inoculants for different types of legumes (vetches, peas, clover, beans and other nitrogen fixing plants).