China: Is peak coal part of its problem?

The world’s coal resources are clearly huge. How could China, or the world in total, reach peak coal in a timeframe that makes a difference?

If we look at China’s coal production and consumption in BP’s 2016 Statistical Review of World Energy (SRWE), this is what we see:

Figure 1. China's production and consumption of coal based on BP 2016 SRWE.

Figure 1. China’s production and consumption of coal based on BP 2016 SRWE.

Figure 2 shows that the quantities of other fuels are increasing in a pattern similar to past patterns. None of them is large enough to make a real difference in offsetting the loss of coal consumption. Renewables (really “other renewables”) include wind, solar, geothermal, and wood burned to produce electricity. This category is still tiny in comparison to coal.

Figure 2. China's energy consumption by fuel, based on BP 2016 SRWE.

Figure 2. China’s energy consumption by fuel, based on BP 2016 SRWE.

Why would a country selectively decide to slow down the growth of the fuel that has made its current “boom” possible? Coal is generally cheaper than other fuels. The fact that China has a lot of low-cost coal, and can use it together with its cheap labor, has allowed China to manufacture goods very inexpensively, and thus be very competitive in world markets.

In my view, China really had no choice regarding the cutback in coal production–market forces were pushing for less production of goods, and this was playing out as lower commodity prices of many types, including coal, oil, and natural gas, plus many types of metals.

China is mostly self-sufficient in coal production, but it is a major importer of natural gas and oil. Lower oil and natural gas prices made imported fuels of these types more affordable, and thus encouraged more importing of these products. At the same time, lower coal prices made many of China’s mines unprofitable, leading to a need to cut back on production. Thus we see the rather bizarre result: consumption of the cheapest energy product (coal) is falling first. We will discuss this issue more later.

China’s Overall Historical Production of Energy Products

With the pattern of energy consumption shown in Figure 2, growth in China’s total fuel consumption has slowed, as shown in Figure 3.

Figure 3. China energy consumption by fuel, based on BP 2016 SRWE.

Figure 3. China energy consumption by fuel, based on BP 2016 SRWE.

The indicated increases in total fuel consumption in Figure 3 are as follows: 8.1% in 2011; 4.0% in 2012; 3.9% in 2013; 2.3% in 2014; 1.5% in 2015.

Unless there is a huge shift to a service economy, we would expect the rate of growth of China’s GDP to decrease rather rapidly as well, perhaps staying 1% or 2% higher than the growth in fuel consumption. Such a relationship would suggest that China’s reported rate of GDP growth for 2014 and 2015 may be overstated.

The Problem of Low Coal Prices

Most of us don’t pay attention to coal prices around the world, but according to BP data, coal prices have been following a similar pattern to those of oil and natural gas.

Figure 4. Coal prices since 1999 based on BP 2016 SRWE data.

Figure 4. Coal prices since 1999 based on BP 2016 SRWE data.

Oil prices tend to cluster more closely than those of coal and natural gas because there is more of a world market for oil than for the other fuels. Coal and natural gas have relatively high delivery costs, making it more expensive to trade these products internationally.

Figure 5. World oil prices since 1999 for various oil types, based on BP 2016 SRWE. (Prices not adjusted for inflation.)

Figure 5. World oil prices since 1999 for various oil types, based on BP 2016 SRWE. (Prices not adjusted for inflation.)

Figure 6. Historical prices for several types of natural gas, from BP 2016 SRWE.

Figure 6. Historical prices for several types of natural gas, from BP 2016 SRWE.

The one place where natural gas prices failed to follow the same pattern as oil and coal prices was in the United States. After 2008, shale producers extracted more natural gas for the US market than it could easily absorb. This overproduction, together with a lack of export capacity, led to falling US prices. By 2014 and 2015, prices were falling everywhere for oil, coal and natural gas.

Why Prices of Fossil Fuels Move Together

The reason why prices of fossil fuels tend to move together is because commodity prices reflect “demand” at a given time. This demand is determined by a combination of wage levels and debt levels. When wage levels are high and debt levels are increasing, consumers can afford more goods, such as new homes and new cars. Building these new homes and cars takes many different kinds of materials, so commodity prices of many kinds tend to rise together, to encourage production of these diverse materials.

Why Fossil Fuel Prices Don’t Necessarily Rise Indefinitely

Rising fossil fuel prices depend on rising demand. Wages are not really rising fast enough to increase fossil fuel prices to the levels shown in Figures 4, 5, and 6, so the world has had to depend on rising debt levels to fill the gap. Unfortunately, there are diminishing returns to adding debt. We can witness the poor impact that Japan’s rising debt level has had on raising its GDP.

Adding more debt is like using an elastic rubber band to increase the world output of goods and services. Adding debt works for a while, as the relatively elastic economy responds to growing debt. At some point, however, the amount of debt required becomes too high relative to the benefit obtained. The system tends to “snap back,” and prices fall for many commodities at the same time. This seems to be what happened recently in late 2008, and what has happened again recently. The challenge is to restore world economic growth, since it is really robust world economic growth that allows commodity prices to rise to high levels.

Some Historical Perspective on Rising Energy Prices and Rising Debt 

In “normal” times, a small increase in demand will increase production of fossil fuels by several percentage points–generally enough to handle the rising demand. Prices can then fall back again and there is no long-term rise in prices. This situation occurred for quite a long time prior to about 1970.

After about 1970, we found that it became more difficult to raise production levels of energy products, without permanently raising prices. US oil production began to decline in 1970. This started an energy crisis that has been simmering beneath the surface for 45 years. Various workarounds for our energy shortage problem were tried, such as adding nuclear, drilling for oil in new areas such as the North Sea, and building more energy efficient cars. Another approach used was reducing interest rates, to make high-priced homes, cars and factories more affordable.

By the late 1990s, even these workarounds were no longer providing the benefit needed. Another idea was tried: encourage more international trade. This would allow the world access to untapped energy sources, including coal, in the less developed parts of the world, such as China and India.

This, too, worked for a while, but resource depletion tended to continue to raise the cost of energy extraction. Also, the competition with low-cost labor in India, China, and other countries tended to hold down the wages of the less-educated workers in the developed countries. Higher prices at the same time that wages for some of the workers were depressed is, of course, a bad mismatch.

One way of “fixing” the problem was with cheaper debt, and more debt, so that consumers could buy homes and cars with lower incomes.  This fix of more debt stopped working in 2008, as repayment on “subprime” debt faltered, and all fossil fuel prices collapsed.

Figure 7. World Oil Supply (production including biofuels, natural gas liquids) and Brent monthly average spot prices, based on EIA data.

Figure 7. World Oil Supply (production including biofuels, natural gas liquids) and Brent monthly average spot prices, based on EIA data.

To “re-inflate” the world economy, world leaders began to try to add even more debt. They did this by fixing interest rates even lower, starting in late 2008, using a program called Quantitative Easing (QE). This program was successful in raising commodity prices again, although its effect seemed to diminish with time. China’s huge growth in debt during this period helped as well.

Energy prices turned downward again in mid-2014, when the United States discontinued its QE program, and China (under new leadership) decided not to continue increasing debt as quickly as before. The result was a second sharp drop in commodity prices, without a corresponding drop in the cost of producing these fossil fuels. This shift was devastating from the point of view of energy supply producers.

Impact of Lower Prices on China’s Coal Producers

China has a lot of coal resources, but not all of these resources can be produced cheaply. Generally, the least expensive resources tend to be produced first. When prices are high, it may look like deeper, thinner seams can be extracted, in addition to the easier and cheaper to extract seams, but this is never certain. At some point, prices may fall and thus issue a “stop mining” instruction.

When coal prices drop, producers are likely to encounter debt problems, as loans related to coal operations become due. The reason why this happens is because loans taken out when coal prices were high are likely to reflect an optimistic view of how much can be extracted. Once prices drop, operators discover that they have committed themselves to paying back more in loans than their coal mines can actually produce. This seems to be happening now.

What Are the Implications for Future World Coal Production?

If we look at a chart showing world consumption of energy products by fuel, we see that world coal production has turned down in a similar manner to the downturn in Chinese coal production.

Figure 8. World energy consumption by fuel, separately by major groupings.

Figure 8. World energy consumption by fuel, separately by major groupings.

There are many large areas of the world that seem to be beyond their peak in coal production, including the United States, the Eurozone, the Former Soviet Union, and Canada. Note that the United States’ coal production “peaked” in 1998. This added to pressures for globalization.

Figure 9. Areas where coal production has peaked, based on BP 2016 SRWE.

Figure 9. Areas where coal production has peaked, based on BP 2016 SRWE. FSU means “Former Soviet Union.”

If we consider the rest of the world excluding the areas shown separately in Figure 9 as the “Non-Peaking Portion of the World,” we find that China’s current coal production far exceeds that of the Non-Peaking portion of world production.

Figure 9. Coal production in China compared to world production minus production shown in Figure 8.

Figure 10. Coal production in China compared to world production minus production shown in Figure 8.

Figure 10 indicates that even the non-peaking portion of the world is showing a downturn in production in 2015, no doubt relating to current low prices.

Another issue is that India’s coal production now falls far short of its consumption. Thus, India is becoming a major coal importer. In 2015, India’s consumption of coal slightly exceeded that of the United States, making it the second largest consumer of coal after China, and the largest coal importer. If China should decide to increase its coal consumption by adding imports, it would need to compete with India for supplies.

Figure 14. India's production and consumption of coal, based on BP 2016 SRWE.

Figure 11. India’s production and consumption of coal, based on BP 2016 SRWE.

India’s hope for continued economic growth is also tied to coal, even though it doesn’t produce enough itself. India’s use of natural gas is declining, because its own locally produced natural gas supplies are declining, and imports are expensive.

Figure 11. India's energy consumption by fuel based on BP 2016 SRWE.

Figure 12. India’s energy consumption by fuel based on BP 2016 SRWE.

Imported coal is more expensive than locally produced coal, because of the transportation costs involved. Thus, adding an increasing portion of imported coal will eventually make India’s products less price competitive. India started from a lower wage level than China, so perhaps it can temporarily withstand a somewhat higher average coal price. At some point, however, it will reach limits on how much of its mix can be imported, before workers cannot afford its products made with this high-priced coal.

As noted above, India and China will be competing for the same exports, if they both expect to grow using imported coal. We can modify Figure 9 to show what the size pool producing imports might now look like, if the countries needing imports is “China + India,” and the part with perhaps extra coal to export is the Non-Peaking Areas from Figure 9, less India.

Figure 12. Coal production for China plus India, compared to production from non-peaking group used in Figure 9, minus India. Based on BP 2016 SRWE.

Figure 12. Coal production for China plus India, compared to production from non-peaking group used in Figure 9, minus India. Based on BP 2016 SRWE.

This comparison shows an even worse mismatch between the peaking areas, and the current production of areas that might raise their supply.

Is Future Coal Production a Function of Resources Available, or of Prices?

Future coal production is clearly a function of both the amount of resources available and future prices. If there are no resources available, it is pretty clear that no resources can be extracted.

What most researchers have not understood is that future prices are important as well. We can’t expect that prices will rise indefinitely, because low-paid workers, especially, find themselves in a squeeze. They find homes and cars increasingly unaffordable, unless the government can somehow manipulate interest rates down to never heard of levels. Because of this lack of understanding of the role of prices, most of today’s models don’t consider the possibility that price levels may cut back production, at what seems to be an early date relative to the amount of resources in the ground.

Part of the confusion comes from the view economists have regarding prices, innovation, and substitution. Economists seem to be firmly convinced that prices will always rise to fix the problem of future shortages, but their models do not seem to take into account the major role that energy plays in the economy, and the lack of available substitutes. Certainly, the history of energy prices does not support this claim.

If I am correct in saying that prices cannot rise indefinitely, then all three of the fossil fuels are likely to peak, more or less simultaneously, when prices can no longer stay high enough to enable extraction. The downslope after the peak will be based on financial outcomes, such as the bankruptcies of coal operators, not on the exhaustion of reserves or resources in the ground. This dynamic can be expected to produce a much sharper downturn than modeled by the Hubbert Curve.

If analysts consider the possibility that prices will never again rise very high for very long, they realize such a low-price scenario would be a catastrophe. That is why we hear very little about this possibility.


It appears likely that China’s coal production has “peaked” and has begun to decline. This is especially likely if energy prices stay low, or never rise very high for very long.

If I am correct about energy prices not rising high enough in the future, all fossil fuels may reach peak production more or less simultaneously in the not too distant future. Widespread debt defaults seem likely if this happens.

If we are, in fact, reaching peak coal, even before peak oil, this is disconcerting for those who believe that the Hubbert Model is the only way of viewing the world. Maybe we are expecting too much from the model; maybe we need a model that considers prices, and how prices depend on wages and rising debt. Falling energy prices are especially bad for the system; they seem to lead to debt defaults.

About Gail Tverberg

My name is Gail Tverberg. I am an actuary interested in finite world issues - oil depletion, natural gas depletion, water shortages, and climate change. Oil limits look very different from what most expect, with high prices leading to recession, and low prices leading to financial problems for oil producers and for oil exporting countries. We are really dealing with a physics problem that affects many parts of the economy at once, including wages and the financial system. I try to look at the overall problem.
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1,385 Responses to China: Is peak coal part of its problem?

  1. Latest Collapse Cafe. Brexit Discussion and Analysis.


  2. Fast Eddy says:

    What’s IYI?

    Intellectual Yet Idiot: semi-erudite bureaucrat who thinks he is an erudite; pathologizes others for doing things he doesn’t understand not realizing it is his understanding that may be limited; imparts normative ideas to others: thinks people should act according to their best interests *and* he knows their interests, particularly if they are uneducated “red necks” or English non-crisp-vowel class.

    More socially: subscribes to the New Yorker; never curses on twitter; speaks of “equality of races” and “economic equality” but never went out drinking with a minority cab driver; has considered voting for Tony Blair; has attended more than 1 TEDx talks and watched more than 2 TED talks; will vote for Hillary Monsanto-Malmaison because she seems electable; has The Black Swan on his shelves but mistakes absence of evidence for evidence of absence; is member of a club to get traveling privileges; if social scientist uses statistics without knowing how they are derived; when in the UK goes to literary festivals; drinks red wine with steak (never white); used to believe that fat was harmful and has now completely reversed; takes statins because his doctor told him so; fails to understand ergodicity and when explained forgets about it soon later; doesn’t use Yiddish words; studies grammar before speaking a language; has a cousin who worked with someone who knows the Queen; has never read Frederic Dard, Michael Oakeshot, John Gray, or Joseph De Maistre; has never gotten drunk with Russians and went breaking glasses; doesn’t know the difference between Hecate and Hecuba; doesn’t know that there is no difference between “pseudointellectual” and “intellectual”; has mentioned quantum mechanics at least twice in the past 5 years; knows at any point in time what his words or actions are doing to his reputation.

    • Stefeun says:

      Thanks FE,
      N.Taleb seems in a foul mood these days…

      Off topic, I ran across a draft of his last book, here are the first 2 paragraphs:
      “The Most Intolerant Wins: The
      Dominance of the Stubborn Minority
      Why you don’t have to smoke in the smoking section — Your food choices on the fall of the Saudi king –How to prevent a friend from working too hard –Omar Sharif ‘s conversion — How to make a market collapse
      The best example I know that gives insights into the functioning of a complex
      system is with the following situation. It suffices for an intransigent minority – a certain type of intransigent minorities –to reach a minutely small level, say three or four percent of the total population, for the entire population to have to submit to their preferences. Further, an optical illusion comes with the dominance of the minority: a naive observer would be under the impression that the choices and preferences are those of the majority. If it seems absurd, it is because our scientific intuitions aren’t calibrated for that (fughedabout scientific and academic intuitions and snap judgments; they don’t work and your standard intellectualization fails with complex systems, though not your grandmothers’ wisdom).
      The main idea behind complex systems is that the ensemble behaves in way not predicted by the components. The interactions matter more than the nature of the units. Studying individual ants will never (one can safely say never for most such situations), never give us an idea on how the ant colony operates. For that, one needs to understand an ant colony as an ant colony, no less, no more, not a collection of ants. This is called an “emergent” property of the whole, by which parts and whole differ because what matters is the interactions between such parts. And interactions can obey very simple rules. The rule we discuss in this chapter is the minority rule.”


    • ejhr2015 says:

      Yay! good stuff. I don’t recognise myself in any of these categories [fortunately]

  3. Yoshua says:

    The German Empire is built on Europe’s largest brown coal reserves. With Ukraine’s black coal reserves the German Empire would have turned into an energy empire larger than China.

    Russia put an end to these fantasies by annexing Crimea and placing the coal mines in Ukraine under their military control. A confrontation between Germany and Russia followed.

    Great Britain’s exit from the European Union suddenly isolated Germany from the Anglo-American world and turned the German empire into a shaky house of cards in confrontation with Russia.

    Germany has always been economically strong but politically naïve. In a world that is running out of oil someone has to do the dying.

    • Fast Eddy says:

      ‘but politically naïve’

      Look no further than their absurd pursuit of ‘renewable’ energy which has left them with incredibly expensive electricity …. what were they thinking….

      • Tab says:

        Isn’t this another case of “they were ordered to” by the controllers?

        • Ert says:


          I don’t think so. I have the book “The solar economy” in german from H.K. Scheer here. He is basically the “father” of the EE-Legislation and the feed-in-tarrifs in Germany – with the goal to promote built-up of and industry base and push research.

          The premise of his book was: Until industrialization we already had a solar economy – and out only long-term way forward is to have it again – as fossils run out and nuclear isn’t an option and also very costly… if you really consider all the hidden costs.

          And I absolutely agree with this premise!

          BUT, BUT, BUT – I think he and other where to optimistic in part of the issues connected with the “solar” economy. He was aware of lots of problems, and wrote about that also the usage-patterns of energy have to adapt….. and that the change will not be easy or simple.

          As the book was release in 2000 – I think the full understanding of the issues and possibilities where not there. But for its time book is and was certainly very much ahead of the thinking of the most.

          So: Good motivation – but you can’t trick physics. And of course – in the long term we will be again a fully “Solar Economy” – even without feed-in-tarrifs 😉

          • Fast Eddy says:

            Aha… so he is the villain that started this nonsense! There should be a plaque with this guys photo on it — and a large bin of stones kept full next to it — for public use.

            ‘He was aware of lots of problems, and wrote about that also the usage-patterns of energy have to adapt’

            Right — so I would assume this means that means either:

            – he expected households, factories, shops etc… to go without electricity when the sun is not shining….


            – for the German government to build both solar and coal powered generation plants at immense cost — and operate them — again at immense cost — and that the people ‘adapt’ by paying some of the highest electricity costs in the world.

            I am absolutely amazed that some countries have charged stupidly into this boondoggle…

            Did they not know that the sun does not shine at night?

            Did they not know that the sun sometimes is obscured by clouds?

            Did they not know that they would have to build and maintain coal powered plants to ensure a steady supply of power?

            Whoever made these decisions should be lined up against a wall and shot. They are either corrupt — or so dense that they need to be removed from the gene pool before the breed.

            This has to go down as one of the stupidest decisions in the history of mankind. One of the biggest wastes of taxpayer dollars ever.


            • Ert says:


              I think that Scheer hoped that the different EE sources will “make the mix”. There is “mostly” a lot of wind when there is no sun, you have biomass for peak-power (unfortunate it’s not used this way… because of the stupid incentives – now its baseload!!!) and water – plus pumped hydro and “hoped to be developed in the future” storage 😉

              The biggest problem I see is, that lots of folks didn’t got the reality message until now. I think lots of people in politics got it by now – but stopping it – or even reversing it is not ‘politically’ possible from the perception management. Still – the feed-in-tarrifs have been strongly curtailed and reversed and the investment in new PV and wind projects have dwindled. Biomass is good as dead (and stupid anyway as base-power….).

              But there surly is still a lot of EE-Hopium around. Don’t know about its calorie-rating – but should try to get my piece of it. Heard it makes life with (premature) death in mind a lot of easier 😉

              P.S.: You don’t need stones anymore – the guy is already dead.

            • Fast Eddy says:

              Far from dead… his legacy lives on in white elephants scattered across Germany… that milk the tax payer every single day….


            • Ert says:


              “milk the tax payer every single day….”

              Haha – its not even a tax – the feed-in-tarrifs subsidy is directly put on the private consumers electricity bill (big companies are exempt from paying the EE subsidy). I for my part pay approx. 26 Cent (€) per 1 KW/h. Fortunately I use only 1100 KW/h per year. But there are of course a lot of indirect costs hidden in services and products.

              So the government doesn’t even really care… and there is no lobby to reduce the subsidy – because big industry is exempt from paying – but not receiving 🙂 And rich private people have mostly PV on their roof, or bought into wind, etc. – so that they are net receivers.

              Only the ordinary and poor are net payers in the German EE subsidy scheme – isn’t it greatly designed?

            • Fast Eddy says:

              “One government estimate projects the Energiewende by 2040 to cost up to €1 trillion, or about $1.4 trillion, or almost half Germany’s GDP and nearly as much as the country spent on the reunification of East and West Germany.”

              Where do you think that money came from?

              Take a peak at the graph showing the fantastic result! Everyone in Germany gets to pay sky high rates for electricity due to this retarded experiment with ‘renewable energy’


            • Ert says:


              ““One government estimate projects the Energiewende by 2040 to cost up to €1 trillion, or about $1.4 trillion,”

              2040? Wo cares? 😉

              And sure… I mean Germany wants to beat the US in regard to misallocation of resources! The US has suburbia – Germany has lots of PV and Wind with a lifetime of approx. 25 years. When the stuff has wears down – then its gone…. since no one will replace it if there are no future subsidies, after the 20 years guaranteed time.

            • Actually, when the factories to make replacement parts are gone, especially for wind, the game is over. Parts are not substitutable among different manufacturers. If China has problems and shuts down some of its manufacturers of parts for wind, that could be a problem.

            • “I am absolutely amazed that some countries have charged stupidly into this boondoggle…”

              What other choice did they have? They couldn’t very well come out and say we need to cut energy consumption 90 percent per capita, and reduce the population 90 percent.

              They created demand for stuff to keep BAU running a bit longer, too.

            • Fast Eddy says:

              What other choice?

              Are you suggesting that the plunge into ‘renewable’ energy has somehow helped these countries?

              All it has done is make a bad situation worse — ‘renewable energy’ has not added any nett energy to the mix — and it has dramatically increased the cost of electricity in countries that have charged into this madness.

              What they should have done is followed the lead of most of the world —- rejected this nonsense — and continued to burn fossil fuels.

              Which is exactly what Germany is doing having recognized that ‘renewable energy’ is a boondoggle of epic proportions….

      • Stefeun says:

        On top of those choices towards development of expensive “renewables”, I read somewhere that nearly all european electricity companies are in bad situation, because they based their developments on a price of 6 €cents/kWh, and the actual price is now around 2.5.

        If the price doesn’t rise up again soon, we might expect some cascading difficulties…

        • They sell their electricity based on the marginal cost of production. This keeps bringing the price down farther. It seems like anyone could have told them early on that the system would never produce enough revenue. Wind and solar could sell their electricity below everyone else’s marginal cost, meaning that it tended not to produce enough revenue for anyone.

        • Tab says:

          “Wind power is taking off all over the world, but not in Japan.”

          How come? Didn’t they get the memo from the El der s?

          And they plan on building lots of coal plants with no coal? How come? There is no growth in Japan.

          I don’t get it. Nothing about this ‘system’ makes sense.

          • Tim Groves says:

            Japan has built a few wind power projects but mainly for the sake of keeping up appearances. They don’t want to be seen as not toeing the line on cutting their carbon footprint. But unlike in Europe or America, there are no “true believers” in clean, green renewable energy in Japan’s corridors of power. They’ve always been heavily dependent on imported FFs and they would love to kick that habit, hence the pursuit of nuclear energy from the 1960s leading up to the failed Monju fast breeder program in the 1990s.

            In the past few years, solar has taken off due to a combination of cheaper panels from China, government subsidies and generous feed-in tariff prices. More and more, we are seeing rice paddies and hillsides covered in panels Many individuals and companies are investing in solar in expectation of receiving a positive payback over the long term, since sticking money in the bank is not very attractive at today’s interest rates.

            Despite ample potential coastal and mountain sites, wind power has not been greeted with much enthusiasm. The upfront installation and maintenance costs are very high and there are a host of imponderables. I suspect they are waiting to see how wind does in Europe and America over the next decade or two. It if looks like a winner then, they will build it.

            As for the planned new coal plants, these are to replace some aging coal and oil plants and some of the nuclear plants that are now slated for retirement. Nuclear is going to come back in Japan, but it won’t come back all the way. Electrical power demand is expected to decline in line with a continued population decline and further improvements in energy efficiency.

            • Tab says:

              Thanks for that. What I don’t understand is that they don’t fall in line with the globalist dictatorship and still get away with it when they are supposedly the biggest financial basket case on earth.

            • Fast Eddy says:

              I guess Japan – unlike Spain, Germany and California…understand that wind and solar provide intermittent power….

              Which means if you want electricity all the time…. you have to build a completely separate power generation system — coal… nuclear… (and pay to build and operate that)

              I guess they figured if they have to do that then why not just run with a single system that can deliver power on demand…

              Makes a lot of sense…

            • Thanks for your update on what you are seeing. One thing that is apparent to me is that wind turbines fail when replacement parts are no longer available. Parts are not interchangeable among those made by different manufacturers. Thus, if a company goes out of business, it is questionable if it will be possible to maintain the wind turbines. There may be some similar issues with solar power, but somewhat less so.

              This is a chart I made of Japan’s energy consumption by type. The “other renewables” are a thin line at the top.
              Japan's energy consumption by type

            • Stefeun says:

              Someone said that windmills are running on (fueled by) a constant supply of spare parts.

    • Why hasn’t Ukraine done more with its coal in the past? Its use of all fuels fell after the fall of USSR in 1991? Its use of coal now is very low.

      Is it because it hasn’t had access to debt to stimulate demand? I noticed that Russia uses debt very little. Without debt, fossil fuels stay in the ground.

      • Thomas John Irwin says:

        I believe there are 4 functional and one badly damaged nuclear reactors in the Ukraine. Why would such a country need more energy?

  4. Stilgar Wilcox says:

    An article suggesting an end to globalization (or at minimum a big step back).

  5. Fast Eddy says:

    The High Priests know this — see the author of the study:

    And they know this – see the author of the study:

    According to the OECD Economics Department and the International Monetary Fund Research Department, a sustained $10 per barrel increase in oil prices from $25 to $35 would result in the OECD as a whole losing 0.4% of GDP in the first and second years of higher prices.

    A 7 year old could be made to understand that the concept of between a rock and hard place applies to this situation ….

    To think that the High Priests are not aware of the nature of the problem we are facing… is beyond ludicrous.

  6. Yoshua says:

    It’s official—Brexit’s ‘Black Friday’ selloff was the worst ever at $2 trillion

    • Stilgar Wilcox says:

      Hey Y, No more looking for the Kraken, It made it’s appearance, Friday – LOL! The Dow lost over 600 points (at one point in the -700’s). The nasdaq lost 202. I don’t ever remember a Nasdaq 200 pt. loss. Maybe in 08? It was calamitous, but will it spiral worse from here or steady the ship? Only the Kraken knows for sure…Monday watch…

      • Fast Eddy says:

        It won’t continue.

        The central banks have unlimited funds available… and plunge protection teams in place … whenever a rout gets out of hand they simply step in and buy up the market…

        Shorting a market is a dangerous game as it means trying to fight the Fed… and its printing press….

        We saw what happened in China a few months back — the market was coming apart at the seams… the PBOC simply pumped out billions and had proxies bid the market up …

        And voila — the market stabilized.

        ‘Whatever it takes’ is not an empty phrase.

        It is policy. And it is powerful.

        • ejhr2015 says:

          Complaints about Brexit are bellyaching by the wealthy. You hear little from the poorer sectors as they have been rendered largely voiceless. So we hear from the remain side now. We need some perspective and balance from the leave side.

  7. Fast Eddy says:

    Another serious problem (on which Greenspan was somewhat less forthcoming) is Europe’s swelling ranks of heavily leveraged, scantily capitalized, bad-loan bedeviled, zombified banks. It was they whose stocks plunged the most today. Despite the fact that central bankers around the world, led by the Bank of England’s Mark Carney, the ECB’s Mario Draghi and the Federal Reserve’s Janet Yellen, had pledged to print into existence countless billions of pounds, euros and dollars in a last-ditch attempt to backstop Europe’s crumbling financial system, the EU Stoxx 600 Banking index plummeted 14.5%.

    By far the worst of the fallout hit Italy and Spain’s financial sectors, where the banks saw their market capitalization decimated by roughly a fifth. For Italy’s biggest banks, many of which are filled to the gills with slowly putrefying non-performing loans (NPLs), it was their worst day in what is fast proving to be their worst year, ever. If the current trend continues — and there’s no reason to suspect it won’t — some are unlikely to even make it to Christmas in one piece.

    The shares of Italy’s biggest bank (and global systemically important institution), Unicredit, slid more than 23% on Friday. They are down 59% since January. The stock of Banco Populare, Italy’s fifth biggest bank, also lost 23% on Friday and is down over 80% since the beginning of this year. The fourth biggest institution, the perpetually failing Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena whose loss-making derivatives bets were made under Mario Draghi’s watch as Bank of Italy’s governor, fell by 16.5%.

  8. dolph911 says:

    There are levels of control, that’s all. There’s not a single person on this planet who controls everything. There are groups which control, or influence, as is stated above, certain things.

    In this case, if Britain leaves the EU, two things are likely to happen:
    1) political and economic elite of Britain are likely to both devalue the currency and allow property bubble to deflate, collecting insurance in the process, while the middle class takes it up the rear end
    2) political and economic elite of EU put up tariffs on Britain

    So the elite of Britain will collect what they can from the people, and the elite of the EU will collect what they can from Britain as a whole.

    So basically, while I salute the people of Britain, they are unlikely to win anything major out of this. Nobody can anymore. As we point out, the system is rigged. Only violent revolution can bring about the end of our system. Violence is the only language that the human species really understands and takes seriously. And not the mere threat of violence, but violence itself.

    • Fast Eddy says:

      The El-ders are a group of men … not a single person … the control everything of importance.

    • ejhr2015 says:

      There’s a Bre-gret movement started already mostly because of protest votes whic were not intended to sway the end result.
      Then again Craig paul Roberts writes that the PTB will get it all reversed;

      • Stefeun says:

        Thanks John,
        That’s my feeling too: whatever the results of democratic polls are, or intensity of the protests, it’s TPTB’s agenda that will apply in the end, anyway.

        We’ve been accumulating examples of that for at least 10 years, in Europe.
        We shouldn’t focus on the little waves an unexpected result will cause for few months, since we know how it’ll end up. The situation is under control, this isn’t a black swan.

    • Tab says:

      What do you mean by ‘system’?

      As far as I understand it, certain unregulated entities are allowed to issue bad loans non-stop. Essentially a pyramid schemes

      This is a ‘system’?

      • Fast Eddy says:

        I think ‘allowed’ is the wrong term…

        The term would be ordered. Commanded.

        If the lending rules were not changed to be looser than a wizard’s sleeve…. then BAU would have collapsed just after the turn of the century as the price of oil started to lift off.

        Loose lending worked to offset the headwind of expensive oil and kept the economy growing

        Are there side effects of such a policy — of course — just at there are side effects from chemo and radiation therapies…

        But we accept these — because the alternative is near term death.

        Welcome to the new normal. Enjoy it while it lasts.

  9. Stilgar Wilcox says:

    Here’s an admittance on a grand scale; “We won’t let anyone take Europe from us.” Steinmeier of Germany. That can be taken either of two ways; either those other 5 founding members of the EU (Steinmeier is going into a meeting with in Berlin) won’t or Germany won’t. But it falls into the range of a Freudian slip. It also goes to the insistence of a quick UK EU exit – they don’t want to upset the apple cart causing contagion with other countries considering a referendum on exiting, so the faster that bandaid gets pulled off the better for Germany. But this also goes to why the British in the first place wanted out and that is loss of soverign power, i.e. Germany’s Merkel calling the shots. So Germany lost WWI & WWII, but now governs Europe? Uh, not so fast!

    Directly from the article:

    Well, one small nuance: Steinmeier wasn’t focusing on the EU, he was far more concerned about Germany and how the one nation that has benefited more than anyone one else from the customers union and the common currency is struggling to keep up appearance that all is well.

    As Steinmeier was heading into a Berlin meeting with his counterparts from the EU’s six founding members, he said the following: “I am confident that these countries can also send a message that we won’t let anyone take Europe from us.”

    • As I wrote numerous times already, it’s not about the latest events from WWI-WWII only, you need wider/deeper perspective about these ongoing processes, as the Germans have had their Reich since late medieval till Napoleon, span of several centuries, yes it fluctuated in power and scope of dominion over Central Europe and various attached peripheries, sometimes it also indirectly stretched wider through merchant-industry agents and settlers into Balkans, Russia, Baltic etc. It’s somewhat miraculous that after all those centuries they still have the “biologic” drive for it, it’s probably not over yet..

      • MM says:

        you are joking about the german reich!
        The americans control every each aspect of german policy since the germans lost the war. If the germans wanted a Reich, they would not let in all the moslems and they would not allow the EU to break ties with russia. America knows that it needs to control the EU by not allowing it access to Russia and China and the germans follow it. Steinmeier was in the Ukraine, why, to get a wedge between the EU and Russia. Again: The USA is in full control of germany. There is no reich idea with the Americans.Everything the germans do is to keep the EU away from Russia, because the USA wants it.They do not do it overtly like the people in Poland but the aim is the same: Get russia on it’s knees and throw the EU below the cart if necessary.

  10. adonis says:

    when markets open on monday the crash will take off brexit is the staw that broke the camels back ,elders in the know or elders who know nothing god only knows the only thing i am certain of is that energy is finite and humanity is in for a rude shock, the facts that world governments have placed their trust in will be seen as works of fiction

    • MM says:

      If you own a trillion in GB bonds it makes no sense at all to sell them in case of trouble. Let your algos work it out. If you need a trillion now, take a loan at 0% for 100 yeaers. No problem at all. There will never again be a black swan event in the financial markets. That being said today, mind my words (dolph)

  11. Yoshua says:

    Brexit Proves (Yet Again) That George Soros Is a Brilliant Investor

    Soros’ return to day-to-day operations, it was reported, was to capitalize on what he called “opportunities to profit from what he sees as coming economic troubles.”

    Soros has also said that an exit by Britain from the EU could prompt “a general exodus, and the disintegration of the European Union will become practically unavoidable.”

  12. dolph911 says:

    It’s all about controlling narrative, not about actual events. Once again let me point out that this is something you doomers do not understand about the elite. Controlling events is impossible…nobody can do it. Next best thing, which can indeed be done, is to control the narrative.

    1) If an event happens and it’s good (for the elite), such as 911 or any terrorist attack, then after the event you use it to your advantage, to shore up the police state, restrict liberties, expand control over markets, etc.
    2) If an event happens and it’s bad, then after the event you allow things to take a fall and then retroactively blame it on the event.

    So now that middle England has given the finger to the global elite, they can expect to be hit hard with declining property values, inflation, etc. They can expect more restrictions from the political class. Perhaps even a breakup of their country if Scotland decides to leave the UK. And then, the elite will go back to say, See! It was leaving the EU, that’s why you are in this situation!

    Think ahead about how the game is going to be played going forward. Remember that ultimately violence is the only way true change comes about, not through voting or any peaceful process. If you want to be rid of the elite, you actually have to kill them. It’s the only way and everybody here knows it. The “civilized” Founders of the United States knew it.

    • Ed says:

      Yes, yes, yes.

    • Fast Eddy says:

      “Controlling events is impossible…nobody can do it.”

      Google the term False Flag CIA …. the High Priests control events on a daily basis…

      Google Plunge Protection Team — the High Priests control the stock markets by stepping in when they go the wrong way

      Google Fed Global Interest Rates — the Fed controls the global economy by pushing rates up or down

      For the most part they are not reacting — they are dictating — if something happens that was not planned — they quickly step in to reset the table.

      Egypt comes to mind — when they decided Morsi had to go and the Brotherhood did not agree and took the streets — the High Priests stepping and said ENOUGH… and their designated puppet was ordered to shoot dead anyone who dared protest the decision

      And the situation was quickly brought under control again. Not a peep out of those cowed dogs.

      • Pintada says:

        Dear Fast Eddy;

        Once again:

        influence |ˈinflo͝oəns|
        the capacity to have an effect on the character, development, or behavior of someone or something, or the effect itself: the influence of television violence | I was still under the influence of my parents | their friends are having a bad influence on them.
        • the power to shape policy or ensure favorable treatment from someone, especially through status, contacts, or wealth: the institute has considerable influence with teachers.

        is NOT the same as

        control |kənˈtrōl|
        1 the power to direct people’s behavior or the course of events: the whole operation is under the control of a production manager | the situation was slipping out of her control.
        • the ability to manage a machine, vehicle, or other moving object: he lost control of his car | improve your ball control.

        Please Make a Note of It,

        • Duncan Idaho says:

          Later, Paul Weyrich, a leader of the New Right of the 1970s and 1980s, explained the strategy: “We talk about issues that people care about, like gun control, abortion, taxes and crime. Yes, they’re emotional issues, but that’s better than talking about capital formation.”

          These social factors made it possible for right-wing pro-business politicians and activists to pose as “populist” opponents of “big government” and the “liberal elite,” rather than be seen as water carriers for big business. Right-wing leaders were very conscious of this. As Buchanan wrote in 1977, “If there is any political future for us, it is forfeit, so long as we let ourselves be perceived as the obedient foot soldiers of the Fortune 500.”

          • Ed says:

            Exactly, talk about anything but money and power. Abortion and gay marriage perfect argue among yourself and keep the money flowing our way.

        • Fast Eddy says:

          I fail to see your point.

          ‘Money makes the world go around’

          ‘Follow the money’

          ‘Money answers all things.’

          ‘Money in whatever hands will confer power’.

          Who ultimately controls all money? He who controls the reserve currency. That would be the Federal Reserve. That would be a small group of men who are not elected – in fact the Fed is a private entity owned by these men.

          Make no mistake – that is who controls the world.

          How quaint to think the president of the United States has any real power ….

          • ultimately it’s he who controls the energy resources

            • Fast Eddy says:

              Of course money = energy… so one and the same….

              Isn’t it interesting how the two political parties in the US are in lock step when it comes to war? Of course war is about the control of energy resources — they can be allowed to bicker about pot holes and taxation and gay marriage…. to create the perception of democracy …

              But the when it comes down to what really matters — control of energy — there is no real dissent. The politicians know this — and they understand that opposing resource wars is not only futile — it is sheer stupidity.

              This is a zero sum game – you either fight for your share — or another country will tear your head off and take a bigger hunk of meat from the kill.

              The High Priests are the leader of our pack. We need to respect them

    • bbox says:

      “If you want to be rid of the elite, you actually have to kill them”

      Well they are not that easy to kill to start with. Wealth buys a lot of hardware brains and muscle,
      It will be amusing if it happens. The peasants kill their masters. The wailing begins. We killed our masters where are our mercedes our x boxes our perfect society. Then they look nervously at each other their hands on their weapons…

  13. Ed says:

    New nuclear reactor design perfect for New Zealand. I tried to convince the minister of energy in New Zealand of the important role nuclear can play in New Zealand to keep their lights on for 50 years after the oil stop showing up at the ports. But he lacked vision. I need an in country evangelist to help me.

    • Artleads says:

      Can the energy be made cheap enough to do the work Gail says need doing with it? Since environmental meltdown, deforestation and ocean death are problems too?

    • Fast Eddy says:

      He probably had common sense and understood that when the oil stops flowing BAU ends — and there is no way in hell anyone keeps a nuclear reactor and the grid operating.

      Give him some credit for forward thinking….

  14. A Real Black Person says:

    I remember reading an article a few years ago that China became a net importer of coal. The article said that manufacturers were facing rising electricity costs in China and were considering relocating to the U.S. because electricity in the U.S. was cheaper than it was in China. The relocation of China factories to the U.S. never seemed to happen.

    My only question was and still is: “From where”?
    Who has cheaper coal than China and would be willing and able to ship it to China ?

    • When factories have come back from China, they have been almost fully automated. The result was that the factories came back, but the jobs did not.

      Australia is a big exporter of coal. It is no doubt supplying part of China’s current coal imports. The US would provide more coal exports to China if there were the demand for it, even though the US’s coal production has been declining for years. The fact that the US has switched quite a bit electricity production to natural gas leaves more coal that could be exported to China.

    • Ed says:

      The pacific northwest has very cheap electric from their hydro-power dams, Quebec likewise has cheap electric from their hydro-power dams.

  15. Fast Eddy says:

    Hollande Meets Le Pen to Discuss Brexit; Can France Escape a Referendum?

    In the wake of the stunning Brexit vote come news that French president Francois Hollande has called for a meeting of minds to discuss a response. Interesting, the group includes Eurosceptic party leader Marine Le Pen.

    Now this is probably not going to be allowed to happen

  16. Fast Eddy says:

    Time to inject some humour into the situation…..

    The CIA code for this is ‘Abbott and Costello’ — it was inspired by:

    Syrian Madness: US Backed Rebels Fight US Special Forces

    In a show of solidarity, US special forces in Syria frequently wear the insignia of the troops they are fighting with.

    In a show of the stupidity by warmongers (President Obama, Hillary Clinton, Senator John McCain, etc.) who think participation in this madness makes any sense, US backed forces now openly fight other US backed forces, some of which contain US army special forces.

    If US special forces are on both sides, which would not surprise me in the least, then US special forces would be fighting each other.

    • Christian says:

      No wonder Hillary will get 10-20% of votes among US troops

    • Ed says:

      Perfect US forces fighting US forces in say Nevada. The owning class gets to keep making money, we continue to winnow the lower social order and we are completely safe. No turning foreigners to terr0rists by killing their families.

  17. The reason Europe has been at peace since WW2, is that energy resources have been in excess, meaning that for the first time in centuries, there has been nothing to fight over.

    Now, the European model is failing, because, as with the industrial system in the rest of the developed world, the energy needed to drive the machines is become too expensive to allow the system to function. Hence Europe is falling apart, and must inevitably collapse.

    Though this clip puts a dash of humour into the mix

    • Fast Eddy says:

      Yes of course Norman …. you are dead on the money…

      But I can imagine that the Koombayaists will suggest Europe has been peaceful because we have all learned to get along — that human nature is evolving whereby this


      Watch what happens when 7.3B people who are kept alive and high on an IV drip of oil …. are completely cut off….

      The Koombaya theory is going to be shattered in an orgy of mayhem and violence

      • “But I can imagine that the Koombayaists will suggest Europe has been peaceful because we have all learned to get along — that human nature is evolving whereby this”

        I just had a prolonged argument with someone who it turns out believes that we in the developed world have permanently improved, that genocide and totalitarianism can never possibly happen in the Western World ever again. At that point, I realized total lost cause. We are magically superior beings to people less than 100 years ago, and all humanity will always be as awesome as us.

    • I agree with your energy analysis and peacefulness.

      Sorry I haven’t been around too much in the last couple of days. I have been finishing my presentation before I attend the Biophysical Economics meeting in Washington DC on Sunday – Wednesday.

      • Artleads says:

        Have a good and productive trip.

      • Stilgar Wilcox says:

        Give it to those people right between the eyes, Gail. Have fun divulging the unfortunate predicament we find ourselves in. “I wish I could start off by telling everybody about the rising cheap surplus energy we have available to increase growth, however it’s more a story about how we decide to use a declining net energy flow. Let me clarify what I mean by a brief explanation of how we got to these turbulent financial waters…”

        • These people are already looking at net energy, in a pretty academic way. I am chairing two panels, besides giving my own talk. Some of the people I know from China will be there also.

          • Stefeun says:

            Looking forward to having a look at your presentation, Gail.
            I’m curious about what “punchline(s)” you’ve opted for.
            As well as the reactions and feedback you’ll get, of course.
            Good luck and Thanks in advance!

          • Stilgar Wilcox says:

            “These people are already looking at net energy, in a pretty academic way.”

            That’s good to know, but is there anything that can be done about it?

  18. psile says:

    How come I get the feeling that this Brexit thing is the next Lehman’s event we’ve been dreading? You know, the one that unravels everything?

    I was lying awake in bed around 5:30 in the morning when it struck me that this could be it. After all it has the three essential parameters for systemic collapse that I’m looking for:

    1. It’s wholly predictable, but nevertheless an event that catches the system by complete surprise.
    2. Has the ability to open up new and greater levels of entropy in a system that is already winding down. A lot of money was thrown at the FTSE on Friday to bring it back from a crash, but is this likely to work in the long term, given all the damage already done from that sessions wild trading?
    3. An event that is universally reported and is talked about, enough to cut through the fog of delusion and apathy. Suddenly everyone is an expert in the subject and volunteering their opinion as to why it happened.

    It seems that Brexit fulfils these parameters very neatly, so it pays to start warming up plan B. We shall see in the coming days and weeks, if market volatility continues and elite panic increases, an indication that they have lost control, whether it’s time to get out of Dodge…

    • I thought the same thing.

      I think it might’ve been Gail on an interview on the Doomstead Diner that mentioned something could come from the left field that could be the ignition for a rapid unraveling.

      • For example, California seems to be in bad shape for many reasons (1) financial problems (2) natural gas escaped from storage needed to run peaking plants this summer (3) hot summer forecast. It could get them into some pretty bad problems. It wouldn’t take much more to cause a real problem. It has one nuclear power plant left, which it plans to replace by 2025 with renewable energy. What could go wrong?

        • A Real Black Person (So what's the scenario) says:

          I think it’s interesting that you brought up California. In the comments section of “$50 Oil Doesn’t Work” I mentioned California as U.S. state being vulnerable to collapse when the subject of countries that will follow Venezuela, in terms of systemic collapse. It fits the bill of a state facing multiple problems and has limited ability to deal with them.
          Yes it has” mo’ money” coming in as revenue than most nation states in the world but it also has “mo’ problems”. Efficiency and productivity, Modern measures of health of human societies don’t, don’t necessarily equate to resilience.

          • Stefeun says:

            “Modern measures of health of human societies don’t, don’t necessarily equate to resilience.”

            Exact, but I think it’s been valid all times (cf. J.Tainter). Our way of solving problems is by increasing complexity, which also increases brittleness of the whole structure and speeds up diminishing returns, and by the way we also increase the “externalities” up to harmful effects, adding up to diminishing returns (and often growing even faster).

          • We think alike about some things.

      • psile says:

        F#ck, it’s looking pretty grim. Certainly starting to smell of a Lehman’s style event. Only 10 times worse. Why? Because of all the denial and complacency in institutional quarters, just like back then…So, dusting off escape plans…and, I hope you like this article…

        BREXIT: The ‘Six-Sigma’ Black Swan of the Millennium

        “Truly, it does not get any bigger than a BREXIT in 2016, or for the entire decade for that matter. BREXIT is the real game-changer that everyone has been waiting for. What makes this eventuality so HUGE in the firmament of global trigger events is that the cornerstone of the NWO’s One World Government — the European Union — will be greatly undermined by such an inevitable happening.”×683.jpg

    • Fast Eddy says:

      The thing is…

      I don’t think that the Lehman moment was a surprise at all….

      When you allow the likes of Liar Loans — you do it for a purpose — you know it is going to end badly …. a 7 year old could be made to understand that.

      The high priests were not taken by surprise by the subprime crisis — they expected it — because they manufactured it — it was part of the game plan – the long term game plan (that changes as conditions dictate)…. the fear that this created allowed them to move on to the next stage of managing the end of cheap oil crisis that started at the turn of the century..

      They used this ‘crisis’ as justification to unleash insane amounts of stimulus…. remember how they rolled out the green shoots meme at the same time…. fear >>>> salvation….

      Which organization uses that formula very effectively…. yes of course — the church.

      The high priests know how much cheap oil is left – they would know the real situation with regards to the Saudi fields and all other significant fields. Of course they do — and they will NEVER tell us…. particularly if they have determined we are running out….

      Oil is the life blood of the global economy — their power relies on a continuing supply of cheap oil …. of course they keep very close tabs on how much remains…. this task would be top of the list….

      These men are not fools — they have contingency plans for everything — they have teams of people working out the implications of a butterfly flapping its wings in China …

      No stone is left unturned. If they make a move and if it turns out badly they have a back up plan… and a back up plan for the back up plan — and they have minions creating new back up plans to back up plans on the fly

      Take the Vietnam War for instance – they lost — but what did they lose? Vietnam was cut off from the world and left to fester in poverty – take that — you do NOT matter to us — and now …. lo and behold they back on Team Elder. Winning! Even losing is winning! Take that charlie sheen.

      Mission Accomplished!

      What is happening is all part of a master plan that recognizes that cheap oil is running out —- and all moves are made to try to stretch this out for as long as possible.

      Is Brexit part of the plan?

      Does anyone think the high priests would allow the British voters to usurp their power?

      No way.

      The high priests are not sitting around a table this weekend cursing those damn Brits… gnashing their teeth… babbling incoherently about how it all went wrong… how the world will crash down next week —- not a chance in hell…

      The yes vote is either what they wanted — does not matter — or will not be allowed to upset the cart — I am seeing that it would take years for there to be any consequences… I am also seeing that some of the parties may be able to veto a Brexit…

      No — this is not the end.

      The end comes from an event that the Eld-ers will be unable to control. When not matter what the plan is — it has no impact on the situation.

      The end will not come from the result out of a ballot box…

      The sun will come up again on Monday…. enjoy the weekend 🙂

      • bbox says:

        “The end will not come from the result out of a ballot box… ”
        The physical limits will be the brick wall. Physical limits can manifest themselves politically.
        The immigration policies of the EU are a attempt to erase any any significant trace of the cultures of the old world order. If there was enough bread and circuses they most probably would have pulled it of but with moar on deaths row…

      • name says:

        Maybe “The high priests” want the collapse to start in summer time? They know that we cannot reach next summer, so they decided that Brexit will be the trigger.

        • Fast Eddy says:

          They have spent years trying to fend off collapse … because collapse = extinction.

          So why would they want collapse to happen now?

          Surely they will continue to do anything to delay that date for as long as possible.

          When collapse comes it will not because it was planned — it will come when the High Priests have run out of ways to fend it off.

          They will be scratching and clawing and biting to the very last second to keep BAU alive….

    • A Real Black Person says:

      I would disagree. Something else “big” to happen to cause unraveling. Collapse isn’t going to happen just because of the Britexit. As I’ve said before, there needs to be multiple things going wrong that overwhelm the System’s ability to address it.

      The UK is not leaving the global economy, it just wants the freedom to negotiate the terms on which it does trade, something the EU doesn’t seem to let it do. The balkanization of the UK into pro-EU and anti-EU camps may not do it either.

      In order for any referendums to have any real consequence they need to lead to a collapse in trade. The disintegration of the EU may or may not lead to that. It all depends on whether debt defaults from countries like Greece can be avoided.

      Debt defaults are what I think everyone should be concerned with because defaults destroy “trust” .” Where there is no “trust” there is no trade.

      • Fast Eddy says:

        Ah yes… the trigger event… that’s the 64 trillion dollar question…

        I am in line with your thoughts on this…. corporate profits continue to fall setting off a deflationary death spiral ending in defaults and collapse of the financial system…

        I cannot see how the high priests can stop that once it hits a tipping point — they can buy back all the shares they want — but demand for goods and services is not there then there is nothing they can do about that (assuming they have exhausted all options for floating boats — including perhaps more helicopter money)

    • Stilgar Wilcox says:

      No doubt psile it’s a situation to watch for how it trends and it could trend very badly. There are different reactions so far, from 1.6 million signing a petition to get another referendum to counter vote the Brexit vote and remain the EU. On the other hand there are TPTB in the EU saying to the Brits ok, then exit the EU quickly. There’s also the possibility of contagion as other countries may exit, like Grexit, Departugal, Italeave, Byegium and all sorts of other catchy names for countries considering a likewise exit.

      Seeing the forest for the trees, this is just a logical progression of backing away from globalization towards localization as net energy declines. One way to look at that is the Brits are prepared to take that logical next step like they see the writing on the wall. Those countries that hold on too long will suffer the worse when they are tossed aside to fend for themselves, especially the one’s that constantly need their hands held with recurring EU bailouts like Greece. I for one hope the Brits stick to their Brexit decision. Fly the Union Jack – be proud to rule yourselves once again and let the chips fall where they may.

      • common phenomenon says:

        “I for one hope the Brits stick to their Brexit decision.”

        The trouble is, the country is split every which way. England and Wales voted to leave, Scotland and Northern Ireland voted to stay. Greater London actually voted 60% in favour of staying.

        The fact that more than one and a half million people have signed a petition calling for a second EU referendum has attracted a lot of attention – but it has zero chance of being enacted.

        I’m sure these people think we can just put the genie back in the bottle now, go back to June 22, then everything will be normal again, the EU will be very pleased, and everybody will heave a sigh of relief. If only. No, no, no. The eurocrats are furious with us now. Everything has changed. It has encouraged EU rebels everywhere. And all because of Cameron’s ill-judged referendum. He has changed history now, and not in the way he wanted.

        Brexit is a real black swan event. It changes everything.

        This is an extraordinary moment, and too many genies have been let out of the bottle. Events will have a momentum of their own now, you’ll see. Two referenda in three years, and the Scots can’t have another one? Let’s see how the Scots react to that. They have their own parliament. There’ll be marches in the street. J K Rowling has hinted she may be pro-Scottish independence now. EU or not? This is a HUGE issue. It engages people’s passions. Sadly, there has already been blood in the streets (R.I.P. Jo Cox, Labour MP). Some Scots tried to lynch UKIP leader Nigel Farage back in 2013. Are the Scots in a mood to allow themselves to be dic-tated to by what will probably be another English prime minister? Whenever an online newspaper article mentions Scotland, I am astounded at the amount of bile directed at Scots by little Englanders in the online comments. It’s been going on for years now. Nation-alism lives.

        The genie is out of the bottle now. Rule nothing out. Remember how the Russia/USSR/Eastern Europe issue morphed in a very short time, back in the late 1980s. This seems very similar to me, in some ways. The breakup of the UK may well be on the cards. I as wondering where the next black swan event would come from. Turns out it was hatching in my own country all along. Expect a whole flock of black swans before this decade is out.

        • common phenomenon says:

          BREGRET is a new word that has entered the informal English language this month. BREGRET stands for BRExit reGRET, i.e. voting to Leave the EU and then regretting that decision later.

          Many people who voted for Brexit, i.e. to leave the EU, wanted to protest against the establishment. They had not really thought the consequences through. It was not until later that they realised they were not only harming the establishment, but perhaps themselves too.

          Brexit voters woke up and were shocked

          On Friday morning, when the result came in at 52% supporting Leave and 48% backing Remain, the pound went into freefall, the stock market fell, scores of property buyers across the country – and especially in London – pulled out of deals, fearing that they could fall into negative equity if they went ahead with their purchase.

          The price of property started to fall. By the end of the day, Moody’s, a company that rates countries – gives them a credit rating score – announced that because of the UK’s Brexit vote, it was downgrading Britain’s credit rating to ‘Ne-gative’.

          All these things happened within 24 hours of the referendum result.

          I read the comments of one BEGRETer. “I thought REMAIN would win. I voted to leave, but it was just a protest vote. Now the pound’s down, and I’m wishing I’d voted to stay”.

          As one ex-pat living in the USA said, “I’m appalled. Here you need two thirds of the votes in two thirds of the states before you can carry out such major political surgery”.

          Cameron didn’t even consider the prospect of losing by a tiny majority that could actually melt away within weeks. Just shows what an id-iot the man is.

          • Thomas John Irwin says:

            What happens if Brigret is just a ploy by the media to get another vote. I have never heard of a Rothchild going public for anything in the last 50 years. Yet the other day a British Rothschild comes out in favor of Stay?!

            • common phenomenon says:

              “What happens if Brigret is just a ploy by the media to get another vote.”

              I doubt it’s that. But Cameron didn’t plan for this – a small majority for “leave”, that could melt away in days as people reassessed their position. Leave voters were not ready for a tanking pound, etc. You can imagine their panic.

          • MM says:

            The delibarate policy of all nations is to get the value of the currency down. Draghi does it with 80 billion a month for the Euro. When the GB currency falls, it is the best they can get!
            What is this, a BRINDERGARTEN, where we do some votes to give it a try? The UK people had a year to make up their minds. If they havent come to a conclusion yet, the should not vote.

          • psile says:

            This is just MSM psyops. The people who voted the UK out of the EU were the same ones who supported it in their youth, but they grew up and realised that it was a bad mistake and corrected it.

        • Tim Groves says:

          Perhaps the English, Scotch and Northern Irish would get on better with each other after a split? Economics isn’t everything, after all.

          On New Year’s Day (2014) a small, mountainous European country of just over five million people celebrated its 21st anniversary as an independent nation. Since independence, it has enjoyed some of Europe’s highest growth rates, with strong inward investment encouraged by low taxes, and has become an active member of the European Union, stoutly defending its own interests.

          The country in question is Slovakia, known until its “Velvet Divorce” from the Czech Republic in 1993 as the smaller, less developed and weaker part of Czechoslovakia. Now it scores higher in almost every economic indicator.

          A model for the Scots, as we contemplate independence for our own mountainous land of five million souls? Well, it would be wrong to see too many parallels. But as a Scot living in the Slovak capital, Bratislava, for the past three years, I see the experience of this country’s separation from the Czech Republic as pretty positive. The strongest testimony to this is that a large majority of both Czechs and Slovaks – who overwhelmingly opposed the split at the time (there was no referendum) – now believe it was for the best. Re-creating Czechoslovakia does not even register as a political issue. More than that, Czechs and Slovaks appear to get on better now than they did when they shared a country.

          • Fast Eddy says:

            Bratislava is nice place — how did you end up there?

            I spent a bit of time here last year 🙂


          • common phenomenon says:

            “Perhaps the English, Scotch and Northern Irish would get on better with each other after a split?”

            Perhaps the English and Scots would. Not sure about the Northern Irish – it’s a positive connection to both the UK and the Republic that keeps the tribes peaceful there. I’d be quite happy with an independent England. The point is, though, that Cameron gambled and lost badly. He has opened a whole can of worms now. Who knows where the momentum of events will lead? This was just supposed to be a little local referendum, but now the country is split down the middle, it will have repercussions for the EU, and it is being seen right around the world as a black swan event.

  19. Yoshua says:

    Europe is a strip mined continent. Europe’s largest coal reserves are located in Donbas. Donbas has 50 years of coal reserves. Today Donbas is under Russian military control. Ukraine tried to take back Donbas by military force, but failed. Europe is back to square one, a strip mined continent.

    Europe obviously needs to “unite” with Russia, since Russia has large coal reserves. Britons will never agree, took a vote and decided to exit. Europe responded: Please sign article 50 so that we can move on. Britons responded: No. I will resign and a petition has been signed for a new referendum. Europe responded: Oh, man !

    America doesn’t like the idea of close European and Russian relations. Americans are saying: Russia is not a democracy and doesn’t adhere to human rights laws. Russia is a mafia state.

    Europe: So what ?

    Europe is stumbling from one crisis to another, is falling apart and will soon turn into something very nasty if we can’t find a solution.

    • Thomas John Irwin says:

      Yes, it could turn into the United States.

    • Fast Eddy says:

      ‘Europe obviously needs to “unite” with Russia, since Russia has large coal reserves. Britons will never agree, took a vote and decided to exit. Europe responded’

      There have been some hints about the Germans shifting into the Russian sphere in the press….

      You could be right.

      The sands may be shifting….

      • Russia may have large coal reserves, but its production has been declining for years. How good are these reserves?

        • They did the numbers and decided it’s better bang for their money and man power to muscle up their nuclear industry, new “massproduced” reactor designs etc. Because it’s portable, hence via small nuclear they can build up resources in Arctic and Eastern Siberia, face the depletion in the south or old Siberian fields that way. Although, there is no doubt, if truly necessary (e.g. war time setting) they can go back to some base level coal economy.

  20. Ed says:

    I am happy to see England throw off the yoke of German oppression.

    • The problem remains, that the young and urbanites rather liked it.., lolz..

      Sadly, it’s the result of melting all cultures into one big stinky global pot of nothingness, the older generations just were exposed to smaller dozes over their lifetimes.

    • Ert says:


      I’m German – but I feel oppressed from Merkel & Co., too. The history of Germany is tricky – and it is officially (and nevertheless) still occupied territory (guess who has there lots of army bases, nuclear weapons and the like…). There is still no peace treaty, still some of the occupational law is legally in place, there is no constitution (only a ‘basic’ law) and lots of Germans wonder who really gives Merkel and the likes their orders….

      Sure, the German industry profits from the EU and Euro – because they don’t have the strong German D-Mark as currency anymore. But the introduction of the Euro has reduced the buying-Power for ordinary people, and the Agenda 2010 under Schröder has established a big low-wage earners market (something like that what they want to introduce in France, too!).

      At the same time the Euro was introduced, the “Germany AG”, a construct in which lots of German banks and insurance companies held shares of each other, was destroyed under Canceler Schröder with specific laws that made sales of share kinda tax-free. Now the primary shareholders site somewhere else….

      • Niels Colding says:

        I am Danish – and I could not imagine a better neighbor than Germany! However, I think that Angela Merkel is too kind in her effort to save the whole world.

  21. Niels Colding says:

    Tim Morgan has written an article which is in synch with Gail’s explanations:

    • Stilgar Wilcox says:

      Really good article, Niels. I like it’s summary of our current financial predicament:

      “At $70trn, the outstanding total remains smaller than global debt ($150 trn), but has grown to the point where almost half of all global debt is incapable of repayment. In short, Surplus Energy Economics identifies a $70trn black hole where claims created by the financial economy cannot be satisfied by the real one.

      With real economic output now static, and seemingly due to commence a relentless deterioration, this black hole is going to grow even more dangerous unless action is taken to remedy the habitual mortgaging of a future that is much less prosperous than the global authorities have yet realised.”

    • Tim Groves says:

      I agree it’s a fascinating article and it echoes what Gail is saying. Also I think the graphs showing the growing disconnect between the real and the financial economy give a clear mental image of the scale of the problem. As the announcement on the curving Central Line Bank Station on the London Underground tells commuters: Mind the Gap!

    • I haven’t really figured out how he is calculating his graphs. I would agree with quite a bit of what he is saying. Thanks!

  22. el mar says:

    About deflation:

    “Michael Hudson: There are two definitions of deflation. Most people think of it simply as prices going down. But debt deflation is what happens when people have to spend more and more of their income to carry the debts that they’ve run up – to pay their mortgage debt, to pay the credit card debt, to pay student loans.

    Today, people are having to spend so much of their money, to acquire a house and to get an education that they don’t have enough to spend on goods and services, except by running into yet more debt on their credit cards and other borrowings.

    The result is that markets are slowing down. Deflation means a slowdown of income growth. Markets shrink, new capital investment and employment also taper off, so wages decline. That is what’s happening as deliberate policy in Europe and the United States. Falling or stagnant prices are simply the result of having less income to spend.”

    el mar

  23. Christian says:

    I can’t recall everything, but do we have an answer to the question: why did nobody invaded Switzerland since Napoleon? They had the money (physical money), why didn’t Hitler got it, for example?

    • It has become a tradition of sorts in the sense you need some sort of quasi independent island a middle ground, where rich and powerful from whatever parts of the continent (or in global sense) can fly in and get their “well deserved” respite, legal and financial counseling etc. Obviously, this has been compromised to a certain degree in recent decades but the basic narrative and infrastructure for it still holds true.

      If you need short take away answer it has been both agreed upon by the top multi generational elitists and co-evolved along the way..

    • “why did nobody invaded Switzerland since Napoleon?”

      One proposed answer is that all the leaders hid their own ill-gotten wealth there, like the Nazi high command. So they would be robbing themselves for their countries, which wasn’t in their interests.

      Also, it is very rugged terrain and the Swiss are fairly well setup to defend it, while at the same time posing no threat, so it has always been seen as low priority.

    • Aubrey Enoch says:

      You might want to check out LA PLACE DE LA CONCORDE SUISSE by John McPhee. it is a non fiction narrative about the Swiss Army. It is said that Switzerland doesn’t have an army. Switzerland is an army. As the Swiss are the descendents of people that continually moved up stream until they reached the headwaters of Europe, we might imagine that they don’t take no shit off anybody in more ways than one.

  24. A Real Black Person says:

    I’m not the really trendy type of person, and at the risk of appearing to be interested in ephemeral things, I can’t help but wonder why is the media subtly telling me that the Britexit, which I’ve heard references to online over the past couple of weeks but didn’t pay attention to, suppose to be seen as a bad thing.

    The media is using anecdotal perceptions of Britian’s exit from the European union from commoners (who all seem to be uniformly dismayed) , and the Creative Class, instead of them having members of the elite state why the Britexit is a bad thing. The media or the elite ( seem also genuinely surprised, across the political spectrum, by the Britexit. The front pay of CNN , at the time of this writing, expresses this surprise and the inability of the journalists to do their job,

    UK exits EU
    “Why did they do it?”


    Neoliberals, who are largely globalists, think Britain’s exit will result in Britain turning its back on globalization. Neoliberals believe that this move has emboldened the enemies of neoliberalism, such as Russia. while those on the Left, think Britain’s move is xenophobic and anti-diversity.
    There are very few remarks from those who voted for Britain’s exit from the European Union, or favor it. The anecdotal remarks are overwhelmingly coming from those who have benefited from Britain’s participation in the European Union, so far.

    I’ve brought this ephemeral topic up, because I’m suddenly become interested in “class conflict”, because it is a taboo topic, and because it is so blatant when looking at the “coverage” of the Britexit. I believe that class conflict is very important going forward, because it reflects a lack of social cohesion. Without social cohesion, how will institutions address problems as final collapse draws closer? I don’t think class conflict exists as the media portrays it. I don’t think there is a social divide between the 99% and the 1% , or “0.1%”. I believe there is a social divide between “the top 20%” , which included just about all educated and well-paid white collar workers and everyone else. “The top 20%” , which included just about all educated and well-paid white collar workers , seem have a consensus, on economic issues, even if they differ on social views. Like many of our current problems, I believe this divide began to widen in the 1970s. The current inability of many governments to address or solve current problems in developed economies, worldwide, I believe is partially due to this class-based divide. How can there be a consensus on any problem if multiple sides are seeing two different realities?

    • Stefeun says:

      Of course there’s a class conflict, massive, and denied by the ruling class.

      It is a cause of some of our troubles, but I think it’s more a symptom, an effect of the declining energy per capita, which leads to a polarization between haves and have-nots.

      As for “solving this problem”, I think it’s not relevant ; the disruption is unavoidable, which will lead to a new equilibrium (we may not be part of it).

      • A Real Black Person says:

        “class conflict, it is a cause of some of our troubles, but I think it’s more a symptom, an effect of the declining energy per capita,” I agree. There is simply more competition than cooperation in much of what we call modern life. The appeal of “Right”-wing moments , nationalism, and religious fundamentalism that they promise a society where there is more cooperation. The Tragedy of the Commons was shown to be a fiction, in its original context of describing land enclosure in England, because the people using the commons lands would cooperate as to how to best use the limited resources of a the commons land. After the rise of commerce, or rather the need for commerce due to population growth, and the need for stronger property rights, widespread cooperation gave way to more fragmented, class-based cooperation and individualistic self-gain. If that sounds familiar, most countries are some where similar now. The difference between now and when land enclosure took place in England, is that we, unlike England of the late Middle Ages, didn’t have the luxury of colonizing new continents for resources.

        “I think it’s not relevant ; the disruption is unavoidable, which will lead to a new equilibrium (we may not be part of it).” With the amount of denial going on around the difficulty of keeping the spent fuel of nuclear power plants cool without BAU, I’m starting to think more and more that the future will be radioactive.

        The future will have a different kind of “Mutually Assured Destruction” than was envisioned during the Cold War. Ironically, it appears to be peaceful use of radioactive material that will ensure the extinction of the human race.

    • Christian says:

      Increasing class distance is a horrible trait of the situation. But what solution we have? At least wealth is concentrating among the top segment, so there are fewer rich persons. A socialist approach is not a real solution, because it also sets a privileged bureaucracy who will still be willing (and able) to live large, as it happened in every known socialism.

      • A Real Black Person says:

        “A socialist approach is not a real solution, because it also sets a privileged bureaucracy who”
        Bureaucracies exist under capitalism.
        Managers are bureaucrats.
        Capitalists are bureaucrats.
        They are no paid according to how much they accomplish but what others accomplish under their watch.

        • Christian says:

          Thats what I mean, we can’t escape a better paid bureaucracy (except we use AI for that task)

  25. Fast Eddy says:

    If Greenspan said this and CNBullshit broadast it…. the El-ders must getting the fields ready for planting….

    I was out on a boat earlier in the marvelous Marlborough sounds… and a huge school of dolphins – hundreds of them — were leaping and diving alongside…

    Truly majestic animals…

    Oblivious to the fact that the monsters on the boat have set in motion a death machine that is going to pour extinction levels of radiation into their home in the near future.

    End the Abomination. Extinct Humans.

    Shall I get some bumper stickers made up?

  26. Duncan Idaho says:

    114th CONGRESS

    2d Session

    H. R. 5293

    AN ACT

    Making appropriations for the Department of Defense for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2017, and for other purposes.

    Sec. 10013.

    None of the funds appropriated or otherwise made available in this Act may be used to implement Department of Defense Directive 4715.21 on Climate Change Adaptation and Resilience.

    • “None of the funds appropriated or otherwise made available in this Act may be used to implement Department of Defense Directive 4715.21 on Climate Change Adaptation and Resilience.”

      That is a very interesting little line there.

  27. Yoshua says:

    Great Britain did at least dare to take a step out into the unknown. The collapse of Europe is coming soon anyway since it’s an unstable project and since we are running out of fire.

    No Peak Alcohol in sight.

  28. Bill Tomson says:

    Actually its akin to a beautiful yacht that was overwhelmed with unwanted passengers that started telling the captain and its shipmates what to do and how to run their lives – and that the unwanted would start inviting more unwanted. The shipmates rose up and threw the unwanted overboard. The yacht will quickly right itself and sail full speed ahead. Anyone labeling England as a ‘Titanic’ is just clueless as to the destruction that the leftist globalists were bringing to these proud and individualized countries. Who wants to visit Britain and be scared of violence from muslim radicals? What idiot would try and ban teapots? Now the rest of Europe must confront the fails of the EU policies and the destruction wrought by Clinton/Obama failed policies in the middle east that gave way to ISIS and massive outflowing of civilians from Muslim countries.

    • daysofourlives says:

      The beautiful yacht is a dreary ISLAND with no energy already half full of the falafal eating immigrants that they already let in. Its only industry the banking cartel of “the City” which they have just p%% off. Hurray brexit! They can wear their union jack underwear proudly as they go on their next drunken drug addled “ohliday”. It wont change their fate one bit, which is the same fate we all share. Collapse.

    • Artleads says:

      Don’t you get tired of hope? We might do better to back off, take a break, get some R&R. No use trying to fixed something as complicated as the global industrial system. Can’t be done either from the ‘right’ or from the ‘left.’

  29. dolph911 says:

    It’s awfully strange for Cameron to provide the referendum, then resign just because it doesn’t go his way.

    I think he senses Britain and Europe are falling apart. Why else would he first say he would just complete one more term, and now resign.

    Who would want to helm the Titanic? It’s a reasonable question. Just quit and then hit the talk show circuit, better pay with less responsibility.

    • Ert says:

      I think he never thought he would loose the referendum. Somehow the perception management or the counting of the votes failed the BAU-system. The US has a better track-record managing critical elections – like Austria, which had also lots of irregularities (vode counting) in their last election.

      Resigning is the best he can do – then others (who?) have to resolve the mess. I mean the EU is bad – but decoupling from it is also bad….. and the UK is in a bad shape – no industry to think of, agriculture in a bad shape (farmers average age to high), energy resources dwindling) – so no easy choices.

      • MM says:

        The UK can now import gas from russia. The EU and McCain threatened Bulgaria to stop a pipeline project to russia. Ahm, where actually does the EU have substantial reserves in FF? Nato, aka USA aha, i see.

    • UK was always a strange bad fellow with regard to continental Europe (anti Spanish-Austrian hegemony, anti Napoleon and anti Nazi coalitions), they joined the EEC/EU not sooner than in the second wave of enlargement. Tories were split long before (decades) Cameron among various tribes of soft and hardcore Brexiters, even Labour party has been split on this issue. It’s a special case and it makes perfect logic that Brits jumped the boat first, meaning before Netherlands, Sweden, etc.

      Basically, Cameron was pushed by his own party to com-promise the referendum later for taking and keeping the PM seat first, it just backfired spectacularly later, which is now. Btw he has been kicked out of gov as an aid in the early 1990s as well.

      • common phenomenon says:

        I am a Londoner, temperamentally 55% pro-Eu, but not enthusiastic enough to have voted, because I think the euro has been a disaster, and the EU has lost a mass of credibility because of it.

        I also think BREXIT is a disaster. The country (the UK) is split down the middle. 52% have voted for Brexit. That means nearly half the country has not. Scotland and Northern Ireland did not. London did not. Already some who voted Brexit have expressed regret. They voted BREXIT as a protest vote, they panicked when they saw the pound and the markets fall, and now they are regretting it.

        I have read the views of one British ex-pat living in the USA. He is appalled. In order to carry out such major political surgery in the US, he says, you need two thirds of the votes in two thirds of the states – and that’s still democracy. The UK referendum and the possibility of BREXIT was not seriously thought through at all, at the top levels. It’s a fiasco.

        A few years ago, Tony Blair spoke of his two greatest regrets: enabling the Freedom of Information Act, which now attracts all sorts of time-wasters, he said. And devolution. He had worried that it would lead to the breakup of the UK. So why did he do it? I have read that there was pressure from the EU, who thought that Britain was dangerously centralist and did not allow enough local democracy. Oh, the ironies!

        • common phenomenon says:

          Here is a hugely insightful article by Fintan O’Toole of the Irish Times (that’s the Republic) BEFORE the referendum result:


          England seems to be stumbling towards a national independence it has scarcely even discussed, let alone prepared for. It is on the brink of one of history’s strangest nationalist revolutions. When you strip away the rhetoric, Brexit is an English nationalist movement. If the Leave side wins the referendum, it will almost certainly be without a majority in either Scotland or Northern Ireland and perhaps without winning Wales either. The passion that animates it is English self-assertion. And the inexorable logic of Brexit is the logic of English nationalism.

          The main political entity most likely to emerge from Brexit is a standalone England. Scotland will have a second referendum on independence, this time with the lure of staying in the European Union. Northern Ireland will be in a horrendous bind, cut off from the rest of the island by a European border and with the UK melting around it. Its future as an unwanted appendage of a shrunken Britain is unsustainable. Wales is more uncertain, but a resurgence of Welsh nationalism after Brexit is entirely possible, especially after a Scottish departure from the UK. After Brexit, an independent England will emerge by default.

          There’s nothing inherently absurd about the notion of England as an independent nation state. It’s just that if you’re going to create a new nation state, you ought to be talking about it, arguing for it, thinking it through. And this isn’t happening. England seems to be muddling its way towards a very peculiar event: accidental independence. The sense of English grievance is undeniably powerful. It’s also highly ambiguous – it is rooted in the shrinking of British social democracy but the actual outcome of Brexit will be an even closer embrace of unfettered neoliberalism. There is a weird mismatch between the grievance and the solution.

          There is no attempt to articulate any set of social principles by which the new England might govern itself. When it comes down to it, nationalism is about the line between Them and Us. The Brexiters seem pretty clear about Them – Brussels bureaucrats and immigrants. It’s just the Us bit that they haven’t quite worked out yet. Being ready for self-government demands a much better sense of the self you want to govern.

          • common phenomenon says:

            What Fintan O’Toole said AFTER the BREXIT result:


            Northern Ireland desperately needed a generation of relative political boredom, in which ordinary issues such as taxation and the health service – rather than the unanswerable questions of national identity – could become the stuff of partisan debate. Brexit has made that impossible. Sinn Féin’s immediate call for a referendum on a united Ireland may be reckless and opportunistic, but no more so than the Democratic Unionist party’s failure to understand that Brexit is the best gift to Irish nationalists. It is the beginning of the breakup of the union and the rise of an independent England for which Northern Ireland will be no more than a distant nuisance.

            • common phenomenon says:

              More from Fintan O’Toole:

              What mattered was what always matters in nationalist revolutions: the appeal of Us against Them. It helped the Leave campaign enormously that Them is both tangible and abstract, both very near and quite far away. It is, on the one hand, the visible faces of large numbers of immigrants and, on the other, the faceless bureaucracy in Brussels. It was easy to turn them into sinister forces bent on crowding the English out of their own homeland and binding them in chains of red tape.

              And it helped, too, that the European Union really is in a terrible state, that the passing of the generation of European leaders who experienced the second World War has left a vacuum where visionary leadership ought to be. Painting the EU as a failed project is grossly simplistic, but there is enough truth in this crude portrait for people to recognise the likeness.

              It helped the Conservative Party is governing with the very limited legitimacy that 35 per cent of the vote confers. Britain’s unreformed first-past-the-post electoral system has left huge parts of the population feeling democratically irrelevant and unrepresented. However much one might be repelled by Ukip, it is obvious that when four million people vote for party and it gets just a single MP, Westminster itself becomes Them for many voters. But if the Them side of the nationalist equation is strong, the Us side is dangerously weak.

              This is a revolution that has scarcely spoken its own name. The English nationalism that fueled it was not explicitly on the table — it was cloaked in talk of Britain and the UK, as if those historically-constructed entities would be unshaken by the earthquake of Brexit. The English have no modern experience of national independence and the referendum campaign articulated no vision of what an independent England will actually look like.

              The key word in the pro-Brexit rhetoric was “back” – take back control; take back our country. There is the illusion that England will now go back to the way it used to be — a vigorous world power with a secure sense of its own identity that stands defiantly alone. It’s a used-to-be that arguably never was and that certainly is not going to be restored. In looking for security and stability, the English have launched themselves into one of the most unstable and uncertain periods in their modern history.

            • I’ve seen counter-argument elsewhere – Ireland is not in Schengen. The open border between the Irelands has been in existence since 1923 – well before the EU was even an idea. Since Ireland already has its own customs and immigration from Europe, little if anything will really change.

              If Ireland joined Schengen, that would change.

  30. Stilgar Wilcox says:

    Wow, Brexit vote really threw a monkey wrench into the works – Dow -522 points!

    • Lots of bureaucrats and celebrities upset. Lots of powerful people were for Brexit – like the Queen. Would be interesting to see how the rest of the Bilderberg crowd were on this issue. Seems like maybe the old money taking back power since the public faces running the show seem to be doing a poor job.

      • ejhr2015 says:

        Anyone seen this? It’s from a speech by David Rockefeller in 1991 to the Trilateral Commission;

        “We are grateful to the Washington Post, the NYT, Time Magazine, and other great publications whose directors have attended our meetings and respected the promises of discretion for almost 40 years.
        It would have been impossible for us to develop our plan for the World if we had been subjected to the bright lights of publicity during these years.
        But the World is now more sophisticated and prepared to march towards a World Government.
        The supranational sovereignty of an intellectual elite and world bankers is surely preferable to the national auto determination practiced in past centuries”.

      • common phenomenon says:

        “Lots of powerful people were for Brexit – like the Queen.”

        There is no evidence for this. “Give me three good reasons for BREXIT”, she is said to have asked, at dinner parties. She was putting people on their mettle: GOOD reasons – and THREE of them. She wanted clarity and logic.

        To my mind, the Queen is an internationalist and always has been. She is in her element at Commonwealth meetings – she has always been far more pro-Commonwealth than her subjects. In 2011 she visited Dublin. In so many words, though not directly, she admitted that Britain had done wrong to the Irish and expressed regret. This was a woman whose uncle, Lord Mountbatten, was blown up by the IRA. She admits to being a devout Christian, and she says that means believing in forgiveness, and she takes that belief seriously. No doubt she believes in “all God’s children”.

        I’m English, agnostic, not a royalist. But that’s how I interpret it. The Queen Mother was a different kettle of fish, firmly right-wing, an admirer of Thatcher and a hater of “the Huns”!

    • Whitenoise says:

      Damn British soccer hooligans. No respect. If they dont respect queen Merkel what do they respect? More strong evidence that no one is in control of this dog and pony show. If the social engineers and the banksters had their way and control no way brexit would have happened. On the other hand maybe they couldnt resist the urge to short the markets the pound and the euro for a quick fear profit before turning the BAU white noise back on.

      • Christian says:

        Hard to believe the queen of England said something that Rotschild’s disagree… Quick profit and russian gas, what else can you ask for?

        Scotts didn’t left two years ago, so they wont. Every thing is fine, except for queen Merkel

  31. Duncan Idaho says:

    .Cameron: “I do not think it would be right for me to be the captain that steers our country to its next destination…

    .”However, if the Titanic, Lusitania or Andrea Doria need one, I think I might have the right qualifications.”

  32. Bill Tomson says:

    The EU had passed regulations banning teapots and cheese with too much fat in them! When these socialist nanny-staters get in power, they destroy everything good and attack heritage. Best thing you can do is punch them right in the mouth and throw them overboard! Good riddance, leftist scum!

    • Tango Oscar says:

      Dairy causes cancer so they’re not entirely off base even though you don’t personally like that decision.

      • daddio7 says:

        Dairy causes cancer, really? I will be sure to tell my father that next time he drives over. He drinks at least a quart of milk a day, has for the last 85 years. Maybe all that raw milk he drank before he was 30 gave him some immunity?

        • Tango Oscar says:

          Anecdotal evidence is meaningless in the face of mountains of new scientific research and evidence. Nature did not intend for Humans to suck off the udders of cows.

          • Tim Groves says:

            Anecdotal evidence is meaningless in the face of mountains of new scientific research and evidence.

            Statistical evidence is just piles and piles of anecdotal evidence collated together.

            But even one anecdotal case of a person drinking at least a quart of milk a day for 85 years proves unequivocally that consuming milk does not necessarily cause cancer.

            And even one anecdotal case of cancer in a person who doesn’t drink milk proves unequivocally that not drinking milk does not necessarily prevent cancer.

            * Please note that when pronouncing “unequvocally” and “not necessarily”, to convey the full import of the words, the speaker should maintain a stern expression while waving and pointing their left or right index finger in the air.

        • Tango Oscar says:

          Also go read The China Study and get back to me. Rats fed 20% casein developed tumors every time.

          • Tim Groves says:

            This is a real quagmire, the China Study debate. It isn’t as if we can read the text of Campbell’s study and accept it as Gospel. And after all, who apart from the fundamentalists accept the Gospel as Gospel these days? A number of smart people have already gone and read it and insisted they’ve ripped its claims to shreds. Here are just a couple of them.

            Denise Minger:
            When I first started analyzing the original China Study data, I had no intention of writing up an actual critique of Campbell’s much-lauded book. I’m a data junkie. Numbers, along with strawberries and Audrey Hepburn films, make me a very happy girl. I mainly wanted to see for myself how closely Campbell’s claims aligned with the data he drew from—if only to satisfy my own curiosity.

            But after spending a solid month and a half reading, graphing, sticky-noting, and passing out at 3 AM from studious exhaustion upon my copy of the raw China Study data, I’ve decided it’s time to voice all my criticisms. And there are many.

            Chris Masterjohn:
            “Eating foods that contain any cholesterol above 0 mg is unhealthy.” — T. Colin Campbell, The China Study

            It was growing up on one of the many dairy farms of the rural American landscape, long before the China Study had taken place, and yet longer before the book was written, that the young T. Colin Campbell formed the views that would shape the early portion of his career.

            Cow’s milk, “Nature’s most perfect food,” was central to the existence of his family and community. Most of the food that Campbell’s family ate they produced themselves. Campbell milked cows from the age of five through his college years. He studied animal nutrition at Cornell, and did his PhD research on ways to make cows and sheep grow faster so the American food supply could be pumped up with more and more protein.1

            Fast forward to the present. Campbell is now on the advisory board of the Physician’s Committee for Responsible Medicine,2 which describes itself as “a nonprofit organization that promotes preventive medicine, conducts clinical research, and encourages higher standards for ethics and effectiveness in research,”3 but whose opposition to the use of animal foods reflects its ties to People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) and other animal rights groups.

            As for me, I don’t have a dog in this particular fight, but like the king in the children’s poem, I do like a little bit of butter on my bread.

  33. Bill Tomson says:

    Thank God the British people took control of their country away from socialist elites and regained their sovereignty, their personality, and stopped the influx of muslims into their country. Hurray Britain! The wife and I have begun planning a trip there next year.

  34. Stefeun says:

    Dave Pollard is becoming a little bit more understandable, about “Selflessness”.
    Nice post:

    • Artleads says:

      So no choice from one POV, and nothing but choice from another. Sometimes it feels like perfecting a performance. When you get it right you know.

  35. common phenomenon says:

    Since 2008 we have had the Crash / Great Recession, the euro crisis, neo-liberalism, climate chaos, the rise of Trump, and now Brexit.

    Not my type of music, but the title springs to mind.

    • THE WALL says:

      Open Season on Globalists to follow.

      There will be nowhere to hide.

      Smell the fear.

      • Tango Oscar says:

        Agreed. It should now be 100% obvious to all that the idea behind big brother and large governing structures cannot work. One human can barely control themselves effectively, much less dozens of countries with separate cultures, ideas, languages, and societies.

  36. Tim Groves says:

    Peak oil in Asia anyone?

    There are a lot of nice graphs here showing the crude oil production and consumption histories for a slew of South and East Asian nations including China (but not Japan for some reason). Only Vietnam and Malaysia are are managing to produce most of what they consume at present.

    HOMEWORK for governments

    who still want to build more motorways, airports and other oil dependent infrastructure: If production and consumption trends continue, where will the oil come from for the next 10, 20 years?

  37. Duncan Idaho says:

    Not a favorable response to the Brtexit.
    WTI oil futures -5.4%, NIkkei -3%, Sterling -9.3%, euro (vs US$) -3.3%. Weeeeeee!

    • Indeed, typical knee-jerk reaction by money changers, but not unlike in Children of Men, Britain soldiers on.. Special thanks to her majesty Queen for that clever pro-brexiteer nudging-leak at the highest hour..

      On the “negative side” this is only going to accelerate things from now on..

      • Fast Eddy says:

        I was in the UK a couple of years ago — I recall using pounds to pay for stuff… I recall my wife not being able to use her EU visa to enter the UK…

        Exactly what is different now that 20 minutes ago….

        • Yoshua says:

          The European Union has been declared dead.

          • Fast Eddy says:

            If that is the case then the El-DER-S will be the ones to decide and announce that. And if they do allow such an outcome … it will be because it contributes to somehow keeping BAU alive a little longer.

            I can’t see how it would — so I don’t see that happening.

            Berlusconi and Papandreao both tried to call a vote on that topic some years ago — that did not go so well for them…. nice gesture though….

            • Obviously, they have a plan for post Brexit world, it’s nice additional chink in the armor now, but the bottom line it’s a major PR disaster mid/long term. Wondering what the Germans are going to do in the midterm they have to choose between larger but very wobbly union with France and the southerners or return to it’s classic historic empire borders and influence, i.e. incl. East/West Germany, Bavaria, parts of Northern Italy, Austria, Bohemia, perhaps small bits and pieces of Benelux, Slovenia. That’s more or less it..

            • Yoshua says:

              Scotland seems to have voted to stay, England to leave, Ireland wants to unite the island now… and the markets are tanking.

              Is it a binding vote ? Perhaps they made the wrong vote ? A new referendum ?

            • Yoshua says:

              EU referendum: Brexit sparks calls for other EU votes


              The UK’s vote to leave the EU has sparked demands from far-right parties for referendums in other member states.

              France’s National Front leader Marine Le Pen tweeted “Victory for freedom” and said the French must now also have the right to choose.

              Dutch anti-immigration politician, Geert Wilders, said the Netherlands now deserved a “Nexit” vote.

              The UK on Thursday voted by 52% to 48% to leave the European Union after 43 years, in a historic referendum.

              Analysts say EU politicians will fear a domino effect that could threaten the whole body.

            • Fast Eddy says:

              The EU cannot break up without blowing the global financial system to pieces so I can imagine this will be fought tooth and nail

              We have seen militant French farmers and factory workers in action many times. They are capable of shutting the country down.

              As things deteriorate — and a French ‘Trump’ or even ‘Hitler’ rallies the masses against the EU….

              This could get very interesting… in a disturbing kind of way….

            • Tusk (EUcomm .pl) -> to complete all Brexit procedures will take 7yrs, lolz
              Kurz (the new Austrian baby Metternich) -> EU needs substantial reforms now..


            • Fast Eddy says:

              No surprise there…

              As if the El-ders would allow this at all if they thought it would be the end of BAU…. nothing happens by chance… everything is at stake … they could easily change the ballot results…

              Remember – these are the men who run the world — these are the men who rain bombs down on countries on a whim….

              This is a group of men who spanked Berlusconi – a billionaire mafia king — sent him scurrying away like a whipped dog —- and put a dictator from Goldman Sachs into his place …

            • My musings about the key role of Germany has been confirmed now as they just summoned up foreign ministers of the original founding 6 countries to Berlin, which is a highly dubious move since the union is now 3x times larger..! So, they will at least debate the pre planned option of launching core federal EU single super state with the outer supporting-vassal ring of other current EU member states.. In practical terms, even if this is agreed upon, it’s massive undertaking and I doubt it will be successfully achieved or survivable beyond ~2025.

            • GGWP says:

              ”EU single super state with the outer supporting-vassal ring of other current EU member states..”

              Yes, it’s the new Reich. The stage is set.
              Let the games begin. War is Peace.

            • Stilgar Wilcox says:

              I just got a strange feeling; what if the fragile financial state of the world has just been hanging by a thread, and now that Brexit has been voted for, Cameron has announced his resignation, France and the Netherlands are calling for a referendum to exit the European union, the European stock market is setting a record drop, the US stock market is poised for a big drop tomorrow with premarket at -400 for the Dow, if that was the straw that broke the camel’s back and from here we embark on another Lehman event? Could it be or will TPTB shake this off somehow? It starts to get very difficult to mask over something like Britain exiting the EU. It’s big event with repercussions, but how far do those repercussions go? Guess we’re going to find out very quickly here…

            • THE WALL says:

              FE you are not smart enough to make accurate predictions.

              End of Story.

              You are a plodder.

              How much proof do you need?

          • Froggman says:

            It’s been a fascinating night/morning! Watching the market reactions, and the cascading calls from other countries for thier own referendums… I can’t help but wonder if this is the next Lehman moment.

            • Yoshua says:

              European Union was built on the promise of “Peace and Prosperity”.

              Europe was built on the promise of Kumbaya !

              Today Europe is broke and at war with Russia and Islam.

    • GGWP says:

      So, UK will be added to the list of failed states, right up there beside Somalia, Venezuela and Syria? Question is, do EU need to start with patrol boats in the channel?

  38. Fast Eddy says:

    I stand in nothing less than awe:

    Here’s What Fueled the Rally in Stocks since February

    We have another post-Financial Crisis record on our hands!

    Share buybacks by S&P 500 companies during the three-month period of February through April soared 15.1% from a year ago, to $166.3 billion, according to FactSet, the highest since Q3 2007, which had set an absolute record of $178.5 billion, just as the Financial Crisis was cracking the glossy veneer of the banks.

    • CTG says:

      A little off topic but humans never learn from history. Have a look at this book 1177 B.C.: The Year Civilization Collapsed

      More than 3000 years ago, “interconnectedness” has destroyed civilizations. It happened at a time where most people are farmers or working on “survival related” work like blacksmith, weaving and shepharding and they don’t have to know what happened to the Chinese Civilization.

      Now, we are to interconnected with extremely long and fragile supply chain. We have a highly complex life as well. Furthermore, only a small fraction of humans are involved in “survival related work”. No offense but what has “rocket scientist, barista or semiconductor chip designers” has to do in meeting the basic human needs of FOOD, ENERGY and WATER?

      Every industry is practising Just In Time (JIT) to the maximum possible and salary/income is so stretched that many cannot afford to have more than a few months of work or unemployment benefits. We are way way beyond “sustaining a living” on this planet.

      • Stefeun says:

        Welcome back CTG.

      • machine says:

        “No offense but what has “rocket scientist, barista or semiconductor chip designers” has to do in meeting the basic human needs of FOOD, ENERGY and WATER?”

        How about this:
        Enabling BAU to produce “FOOD, ENERGY and WATER”

        • CTG says:

          When BAU is gone, who has the skills, knowledge to live the way humans do thousands of years ago? Lost knowledge, lost skills. We have way too many people who are not directly related to “human survival”. In olden days, everyone has a part to play in ensuring the survival of the village. All our food is derived at least 10-15 miles outside the place we stay. That is just being conservative (on the distances)

      • Christian says:

        Hi CTG

        I didn’t knew about this book. Does it mention the fall of Troy? I think it happened around that time

        • CTG says:

          I have not finished the book yet. It is more of the concept that is important

          • Christian says:

            I think I know the concept (at least Korowicz’s version). The fall of Troy is the founding myth of the whole western society, that’s why I’m targeting it. If the author says nothing on Troy, it’s very possible his analysis is wrong

            • Christian says:

              Or we got the wrong myth, but Troy should be there somehow given it was a very important power at that time

  39. machine says:

    Why Consumer Spending is Not the Most Important Measure of the Economy

    “This is a common response based on a fallacy in the media — that the economy is consumer-driven because 70% of gross domestic product (GDP) is made up of consumer spending. Based on this myth, reporters are always worried that consumers will stop or reduce their spending during the holidays, leading to a massive recession.”

    “Fortunately, the federal government (Bureau of Economic Analysis in the U.S. Commerce Department) now produces a broader, more accurate measure of economic activity called gross output (GO). I’ve been the biggest advocate of GO since writing my book, “The Structure of Production,” in 1990. The book is now in its 3rd edition.”

    “Adjusted GO amounted to $39.0 trillion in 2015, and only $12.2 trillion of it is linked to personal consumption expenditures. That means that consumer spending makes up only 30% — not 70% — of the economy. As much as 60% of economic activity is business spending and investment. See the chart below comparing business and consumer spending.”

    • Stefeun says:

      Maybe the “net” consumer spending is 30% of GDP only, but without those 30% you would have none of the rest, nothing would happen upstream in the production flow.

      So, to me, such a distinction is moot ; looks like an argument for the govt money (tax-cuts, subsidies, etc…) to go to the businesses instead of the final consumer. This money therefore remains stuck upstream and doesn’t improve the economy as a whole (since consumer spending still has to be the first input, in reality).

      • machine says:

        “since consumer spending still has to be the first input, in reality”
        Perhaps, that could also be a nice future debate. Another time. 😉

        Although, I would argue that the economy isn’t that brittle.
        Even though consumer spending can be reduced, the GO can still grow.

        It is exactly what I guess will happen as the alternative of spawning money to mindless consumerism only leads to inflation, pollution and energy waste.

        • Stefeun says:

          Pollution and energy waste are related to the activity of production.
          Wether this activity is B2B or B2C (to business or to consumer) doesn’t matter.

          I don’t see the point in having an artificially over-inflated B2B sector, and, on the other hand, the consumption is not necessarily “mindless” (which is actually the trap of “consumerism”).

          As for inflation, it depends on where the money goes (or remains stuck) ; too complex a topic for me to dicuss here (and it’s 05:00AM in Europe;-)).

          • machine says:

            Small and medium sized business owners usually seem quite careful of how their money is being spent. At least speaking anecdotally from my own experience with them, they are usually quite brilliant people.

            Their nonsense-o-meter is quite finely honed to finding and eliminating wastes.

            • Stefeun says:

              Sure, but I doubt it’s the case for Big Corp.
              (THEY are really mindless)

              I would even class the small&medium business owners in the “consumer” category, in many respects.

  40. Yoshua says:

    Mother Nature obviously made us into pyromaniacs for a good reason.

    By burning fossil fuels we release co2 into the atmosphere, which are essential building blocks for flora and fauna and at the same time we release aerosols which are essential in producing rain clouds which then water the plants, we are turning this world into a warmer, more moist and greener planet.

    We will of course die in the process but that isn’t Mother Natures problem.

  41. Stilgar Wilcox says:
    Tornado hits China; 78 dead, 500 injured, 200 critically.

  42. Pintada says:

    Just got this in my mail:

    Now we can watch, and learn!

    • Ert says:

      “… of Take Back Your Time & The Happiness Project for a lively, free-flowing conversation about what the future of consumerism might look like in a 100% renewable energy future.

      Tripple-Bull***t – wow! And supported/features/hosted (their logo is in that page) by the “Post carbon institute”…. had a link to a new article from Heinberg some comments below…. this gets even crazier!

      FE please help!!!

      • Fast Eddy says:

        I’ve sent them the google article stating how renewable energy cannot replace fossil fuels because it is a physical impossibility

        • jarvis says:

          I’ve had to put a block on the Post Carbon Institute as their nonsense is just too painful to bear. I have the solar panels on my roof and the batteries in my basement and the electric car in my garage and I know for a fact there is NO such thing as a Post Carbon civilization. Friends who see my solar panels and compliment me on my green creds I inform them that if I was green I would have done the decent thing and imported the lignite coal from China and burned it gradually over the next 20 years giving the surrounding forest a chance to absorb the carbon but I’m not so I imported solar panels instead because who wants 20 tons of Chinese coal piled in their yard – then people would think I’m crazy.

          • Fast Eddy says:

            I like it! I really like it!

          • machine says:

            Upper middle class I can tell. Brilliant.
            Solar panels and Teslas are indeed cool and nerdy trinkets of BAU pollution they cause.

          • Christian says:

            Very good jarvis!

          • Tango Oscar says:

            I got a Prius and solar but not because I think the environment can be saved. I live in an area so remote there are no power lines and I don’t really see the advantage in paying double for gas so I can impress people I don’t care about.

          • Pintada says:

            Dear jarvis;


    • common phenomenon says:

      Yes, economic growth must continue! After all, we haven’t cut down all of the Amazon rain forest yet. There’s masses of it yet! And if it turns to desert – hey, no more world sand shortage!

      These people forget that economic growth means continuing de-growth of the Earth. Fracking it, mining it, for ever more “product”.

      • Fast Eddy says:

        If an errant drone missile hit that gathering … would the world be a better or a worse place?

  43. Fast Eddy says:

    A heroin “epidemic” is gripping the United States, where cheap supply has helped push the number of users to a 20-year high, increasing drug-related deaths, the United Nations said on Thursday.

    According to the U.N.’s World Drug Report 2016, the number of heroin users in the United States reached around one million in 2014, almost three times as many as in 2003. Heroin-related deaths there have increased five-fold since 2000.

    “There is really a huge epidemic (of) heroin in the U.S.,” said Angela Me, the chief researcher for the report which was released on Thursday.

    “It is the highest definitely in the last 20 years,” Me said, adding that the trend was continuing.

  44. Greg Machala says:

    Seems like every aspect of modern “civilization” is being affected by limits of all types. Even infinite energy would not offer relief from our predicament. Our goose is cooked.

    • Greg Machala says:

      “If all the sand used by humans in a single year was turned into a wall it would be 20 metres high, 20 metres wide and stretch all the way around the equator.” Seems like and impossible amount of sand to quarry in a year.

    • xabier says:

      I believe this is what is called in Germanic countries ‘Coming to the Dog’: medieval treasure chests had a dog painted at the bottom, when empty that’s what you saw, the Mutt, looking right back at you……

  45. Christian says:

    More on robots, not sure what to think about it

  46. “Unless there is a huge shift to a service economy, we would expect the rate of growth of China’s GDP to decrease rather rapidly as well, perhaps staying 1% or 2% higher than the growth in fuel consumption. Such a relationship would suggest that China’s reported rate of GDP growth for 2014 and 2015 may be overstated.”

    It’s highly unlikely that China’s reported GDP figures are overstated. Their track record is excellent. See ‘The Quality of China’s GDP Statistics’, by Carsten A. HOLZ
    And ‘On the Reliability of Chinese Output Figures’ John Fernald, Israel Malkin, and Mark Spiegel, FEDERAL RESERVE BANK OF SAN FRANCISCO

    So we must look to other possibilities. First, there IS a huge shift to a service economy: personal consumption in China has been growing around 10 percent per year for more than a decade, the highest rate in the world by far, multiple times faster than developed countries and twice the rate of other middle-income economies. China’s gross national saving rate has correspondingly declined from a peak of 52% of GDP in 2008 to around 44% this year. To the extent that China makes progress on the road to consumer-led rebalancing, it will shift from surplus saving to saving absorption.

    Second, the net value – to China – of its exports has been rising steadily as they move up the value chain and the net cost of its imports fall and and/or are replaced by indigenously manufactured components. China will retain about 80% of the value of its exports this year compared to 50% twelve years ago.

    • machine says:

      That one was for common phenomenon

      • common phenomenon says:

        True, but why do animals eat meat too? Who invented the universe? Who invented the food chain? Blame them. I’m not to blame. 🙁

        • Tango Oscar says:

          Judging by nature there is no right or wrong, merely choices with consequences. Our sharp teeth are evolution’s way of giving us the tool to do the job. Likewise we were given far more flat teeth suitable for crushing nuts or vegetables. High animal protein consumption is correlated with cancer. Vegetables do the opposite. It is what it is, ethical complications of perspective aside.

          • machine says:

            “It is what it is, ethical complications of perspective aside.”

            Ethical, environmental and medical complications.
            Otherwise, pretty much spot on.

            • Tango Oscar says:

              I agree, I’m just stating the facts. I am a very strong opponent of factory farms for the way they treat animals btw. It is like the holocaust everyday for them. Ethics get fuzzy when you start going into people’s right to eat meat or smoke cigarettes. At what point do humans give up and admit defeat? Apparently today because Britain just left the EU!

          • bandits101 says:

            …….and they say cooked/smoked meat is carcinogenic, along with nearly everything else in our lives from our drinking water to sun baking. There is a naturally occurring fungus which can form on peanuts or peanut butter that is very cancerous. I think you can even prepare and cook vegetables in such a way that makes them carcinogenic. It probably comes down to moderation, except for the very obvious like coal dust, asbestos, burnt and inhaled tobacco (raw tobacco like snuff is ok I think) and radiation. It would be difficult to go about your daily life these days without passing by some sort of cancerous agent.

      • common phenomenon says:

        As for the “appeal to nature”, well, humans are animals too. We are part of nature, though we try to deny it. That’s why we’re in all the trouble we’re in. We have all the instincts of greed, aggression, territoriality. We seek instant gratification, whatever the cost. If can’t have the real thing, because we would end up in prison, we settle for a computer game of it instead: mass murder via virtual reality.

        • machine says:

          You are mixing up human nature with a logic fallacy. Your reasoning is flawed.

          • common phenomenon says:

            No, your reasoning is flawed. You are making the wrong categories, and ignoring the logic of what I said. We are human beings, whose nature is to try to control nature, because we believe we can do it, but we are also part of nature, and nature bats last, as Guy McPherson rightly observes. Your obfuscation of semantics won’t save you.

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