Why Oil Prices Can’t Bounce Very High; Expect Deflation Instead

Economists have given us a model of how prices and quantities of goods are supposed to interact.

Figure 1. From Wikipedia: The price P of a product is determined by a balance between production at each price (supply S) and the desires of those with purchasing power at each price (demand D). The diagram shows a positive shift in demand from D1 to D2, resulting in an increase in price (P) and quantity sold (Q) of the product.

Unfortunately, this model is woefully inadequate. It sort of works, until it doesn’t. If there is too little of a product, higher prices and substitutions are supposed to fix the problem. If there is too much, prices are supposed to fall, causing the higher-priced producers to drop out of the system.

This model doesn’t work with oil. If prices drop, as they have done since mid-2014, businesses don’t drop out. They often try to pump more. The plan is to try to make up for inadequate prices by increasing the volume of extraction. Of course, this doesn’t fix the problem. The hidden assumption is, of course, that eventually oil prices will again rise. When this happens, the expectation is that oil businesses will be able to make adequate profits. It is hoped that the system can again continue as in the past, perhaps at a lower volume of oil extraction, but with higher oil prices.

I doubt that this is what really will happen. Let me explain some of the issues involved.

[1] The economy is really a much more interlinked system than Figure 1 makes it appear.

Supply and demand for oil, and for many other products, are interlinked. If there is too little oil, the theory is that oil prices should rise, to encourage more production. But if there is too little oil, some would-be workers will be without jobs. For example, truck drivers may be without jobs if there is no fuel for the vehicles they drive. Furthermore, some goods will not be delivered to their desired locations, leading to a loss of even more jobs (both at the manufacturing end of the goods, and at the sales end).

Ultimately, a lack of oil can be expected to reduce the availability of jobs that pay well. Digging in the ground with a stick to grow food is a job that is always around, with or without supplemental energy, but it doesn’t pay well!

Thus, the lack of oil really has a two-way pull:

(a) Higher prices, because of the shortage of oil and the desired products it produces.

(b) Lower prices, because of a shortage of jobs that pay adequate wages and the “demand” (really affordability) that these jobs produce.

[2] There are other ways that the two-way pull on prices can be seen:

(a) Prices need to be high enough for oil producers, or they will eventually stop extracting and refining the oil, and,

(b) Prices cannot be too high for consumers, or they will stop buying products made with oil.

If we think about it, the prices of basic commodities, such as food and fuel, cannot rise too high relative to the wages of ordinary (also called “non-elite”) workers, or the system will grind to a halt. For example, if non-elite workers are at one point spending half of their income on food, the price of food cannot double. If it does, these workers will have no money left to pay for housing, or for clothing and taxes.

[3] The upward pull on oil prices comes from a combination of three factors.

(a) Rising cost of production, because the cheapest-to-produce oil tends to be extracted first, leaving the more expensive-to-extract oil for later. (This pattern is also true for other types of resources.)

(b) If workers are becoming more productive, this growing productivity of workers is often reflected in higher wages for the workers. With these higher wages, workers can afford more goods made with oil, and that use oil in their operation. Thus, these higher wages lead to higher “demand” (really affordability) for oil.

Recently, worker productivity has not been growing. One reason this is not surprising is because energy consumption per capita hit a peak in 2013. With less energy consumption per capita, it is likely that, on average, workers are not being given bigger and better “tools” (such as trucks, earth-moving equipment, and other machines) with which to leverage their labor. Such tools require the use of energy products, both when they are manufactured and when they are operated.

Figure 2. World Daily Per Capita Energy Consumption, based on primary energy consumption from BP Statistical Review of World Energy and 2017 United Nations population estimates.

(c) Another “pull” on demand comes from increased investment. This investment can be debt-based or can reflect equity investment. It is these financial assets that allow new mines to be opened, and new factories to be built. Thus, wages of non-elite workers can grow. McKinsey Global Institute reports that growth in total “financial assets” has slowed since 2007.

Figure 3. Figure by McKinsey Global Institute showing that growth in debt in financial instruments (both debt and equity) has slowed significantly since 2007. Source

More recent data by McKinsey Global Institute shows that cross-border investment, in particular, has slowed since 2007.

Figure 4. Figure by McKinsey Global Institute showing that global cross-border capital flows (combined debt and equity) have declined by 65% since the 2007 peak. Download from this page.

This cross-border investment is especially helpful in encouraging exports, because it often puts into place new facilities that encourage extraction of minerals. Some minerals are available in only a few places in the world; these minerals are often traded internationally.

[4] The downward pull on oil and other commodity prices comes from several sources.

(a) Oil exports are often essential to the countries where they are extracted because of the tax revenue and jobs that they produce. The actual cost of extraction may be quite low, making extraction feasible, even at very low prices. Because of the need for tax revenue and jobs, governments will often encourage production regardless of price, so that the country can maintain its place in the world export market until prices again rise.

(b) Everyone “knows” that oil and other commodities will be needed in the years ahead. Because of this, there is no point in stopping production altogether. In fact, the cost of production is likely to keep rising, putting an upward push on commodity prices. This belief encourages businesses to stay in the market, regardless of the economics.

(c) There is a long lead-time for developing new extraction capabilities. Decisions made today may affect extraction ten years from now. No one knows what the oil price will be when the new production is brought online. At the same time, new production is coming on-line today, based on analyses when prices were much higher than they are today. Furthermore, once all of the development costs have been put in place, there is no point in simply walking away from the investment.

(d) Storage capacity is limited. Production and needed supply must balance exactly. If there is more than a tiny amount of oversupply, prices tend to plunge.

(e) The necessary price varies greatly, depending where geographically the extraction is being done, and depending on what is included in the calculation. Costs are much lower if the calculation is done excluding investment to date, or excluding taxes paid to governments, or excluding necessary investments needed for pollution control. It is often easy to justify accepting a low price, because there is usually some cost basis upon which such a low price is acceptable.

(f) Over time, there really are efficiency gains, but it is difficult to measure how well they are working. Do these “efficiency gains” simply speed up production a bit, or do they allow more oil in total to be extracted? Also, cost cuts by contractors tend to look like efficiency gains. In fact, they may simply be temporary prices cuts, reflecting the desire of suppliers to maintain some market share in a time when prices are too low for everyone.

(g) Literally, every economy in the world wants to grow. If every economy tries to grow at the same time and the market is already saturated (given the spending power of non-elite workers), a very likely outcome is plunging prices.

[5] As we look around the world, the prices of many commodities, including oil, have fallen in recent years.

Figures 3 and 4 show that investment spending spiked in 2007. Oil prices spiked not long after that–in the first half of 2008.

Figure 5. Monthly Brent oil prices with dates of US beginning and ending QE.

Quantitative Easing (QE) is a way of encouraging investment through artificially low interest rates. US QE began right about when oil prices were lowest. We can see that the big 2008 spike and drop in prices corresponds roughly to the rise and drop in investment in Figures 3 and 4, above, as well.

If we look at commodities other than oil, we often see a major downslide in prices in recent years. The timing of this downslide varies. In the US, natural gas prices fell as soon as gas from fracking became available, and there started to be a gas oversupply problem.

I expect that at least part of gas’s low price problem also comes from subsidized prices for wind and solar. These subsidies lead to artificially low prices for wholesale electricity. Since electricity is a major use for natural gas, low wholesale prices for electricity indirectly tend to pull natural gas prices down.

Figure 6. Natural gas prices in the US and Canada, indexed to the 2008 price, based on annual price data provided in BP Statistical Review of World Energy, 2017.

Many people assume that fracking can be done so inexpensively that the type of downslide in prices shown in Figure 6 makes sense. In fact, the low prices available for natural gas are part of what have been pushing North American “oil and gas” companies toward bankruptcy.

For a while, it looked like high natural gas prices in Europe and Asia might allow the US to export natural gas as LNG, and end its oversupply problem. Unfortunately, overseas prices of natural gas have slid since 2013, making the profitability of such exports doubtful (Figure 7).

Figure 7. Prices of natural gas imports to Europe and Asia, indexed to 2008 levels, based on annual average prices provided by BP Statistical Review of World Energy, 2017.

Coal prices have followed a downward slope of a different shape since 2008. Note that the 2016 prices range from 32% to 59% below the 2008 level. They are even lower, relative to 2011 prices.

Figure 8. Prices of several types of coal, indexed to 2008 levels, based on annual average prices provided by BP Statistical Review of World Energy, 2017.

Figure 9 shows the price path for several metals and minerals. These seem to follow a downward path as well. I did not find a price index for rare earth minerals that went back to 2008. Recent data suggested that the prices of these minerals have been falling as well.

Figure 9. Prices of various metals and minerals, indexed to 2008, based on USGS analyses found using this link: https://minerals.usgs.gov/minerals/pubs/mcs/

Figure 9 shows that several major metals are down between 24% and 35% since 2008. The drop is even greater, relative to 2011 price levels.

Internationally traded foods have also fallen in price since 2008.

Figure 10. Food prices, indexed to 2008 levels, based on data from the United Nations’ Food and Agricultural Organization.

In Item [4] above, I listed several factors that would tend to make oil prices fall. These same issues could be expected to cause the prices of these other commodities to drop. In addition, energy products are used in the production of metals and minerals and of foods. A drop in the price of energy products would tend to flow through to lower extraction prices for minerals, and lower costs for growing agricultural products and bringing products to market.

One surprising place where prices are dropping is in the auction prices for the output of onshore wind turbines. This is a chart shown by Roger Andrews, in a recent article on Energy Matters. The cost of making wind turbines doesn’t seem to be dropping dramatically, except from the fall in the prices of commodities used to make the turbines. Yet auction prices seem to be dropping by 20% or more per year.

Figure 11. Figure by Roger Andrews, showing trend in auction prices of onshore wind energy from Energy Matters.

Thus, wind energy purchased through auctions seems to be succumbing to the same deflationary market forces as oil, natural gas, coal, many metals, and food.

[6] It is very hard to see how oil prices can rise significantly, without the prices of many other commodities also rising.

What seems to be happening is a basic mismatch between (a) the amount of goods and services countries want to sell, and (b) the amount of goods and services that are truly affordable by consumers, especially those who are non-elite workers. Somehow, we need to fix this supply/demand (affordability) imbalance.

One way of raising demand is through productivity growth. As mentioned previously, such a rise in productivity growth hasn’t been happening in recent years. Given the falling energy per capita amounts in Figure 2, it seems unlikely that productivity will be growing in the near future, because the adoption of improved technology requires energy consumption.

Another way of raising demand is through wage increases, over and above what would be indicated by productivity growth. With globalization, the trend has been to lower and less stable wages, especially for less educated workers. This is precisely the opposite direction of the change we need, if demand for goods and services is to rise high enough to prevent deflation in commodity prices. There are very many of these non-elite workers. If their wages are low, this tends to reduce demand for homes, cars, motorcycles, and the many other goods that depend on wages of workers in the world. It is the manufacturing and use of these goods that influences demand for commodities.

Another way of increasing demand is through rising investment. This can eventually filter back to higher wages, as well. But this isn’t happening either. In fact, Figures 3 and 4 show that the last big surge in investment was in 2007. Furthermore, the amount of debt growth required to increase GDP by one percentage point has increased dramatically in recent years, both in the United States and China, making this approach to economic growth increasingly less effective. Recent discussions seem to be in the direction of stabilizing or lowering debt levels, rather than raising them. Such changes would tend to lower new investment, not raise it.

[7] In many countries, falling export revenue is adversely affecting demand for imported goods and services.

It is not too surprising that the export revenue of Saudi Arabia has fallen, with the drop in oil prices.

Figure 12. Saudi Arabia exports and imports of goods and services based on World Bank data.

Because of the drop in exports, Saudi Arabia is now buying fewer imported goods and services. A person would expect other oil exporters also to be making cutbacks on their purchases of imported goods and services. (Exports in current US$ means exports measured year-by-year in US$, without any inflation adjustment.)

It is somewhat more surprising that China’s exports and imports are falling, as measured in US$. Figure 13 shows that, in US dollar terms, China’s exports of goods and services fell in both 2015 and 2016. The imports that China bought also fell, in both of these years.

Figure 13. China’s exports and imports of goods and services on a current US$ basis, based on World Bank data.

Similarly, both the exports and imports of India are down as well. In fact, India’s imports have fallen more than its exports, and for a longer period–since 2012.

Figure 14. India’s exports and imports of goods and services in current dollars, based on World Bank data.

The imports of goods and services for the United States also fell in 2015 and 2016. The US is both an exporter of commodities (particularly food and refined petroleum products) and an importer of crude oil, so this is not surprising.

Figure 15. US exports and imports of goods and services in US dollars, based on World Bank data.

In fact, on a world basis, exports and imports of goods and services both fell, in 2015 and 2016 as measured in US dollars.

Figure 16. World exports and imports in current US dollars, based on World Bank data.

[8] Once export (and import) revenues are down, it becomes increasingly difficult to raise prices again. 

If a country is not selling much of its own exports, it becomes very difficult to buy much of anyone else’s exports. This impetus, by itself, tends to keep prices of commodities, including oil, down.

Furthermore, it becomes more difficult to repay debt, especially debt that is in a currency that has appreciated. This means that borrowing additional debt becomes less and less feasible, as well. Thus, new investment becomes more difficult. This further tends to keep prices down. In fact, it tends to make prices fall, since new investment is needed to keep prices level.

[9] World financial leaders in developed countries do not understand what is happening, because they have written off commodities as “unimportant” and “something that lesser-developed countries deal with.”

In the US, few consumers are concerned about the price of corn. Instead, they are interested in the price of a box of corn flakes, or the price of corn tortillas in a restaurant.

The US, Europe and Japan specialize in high “value added” goods and services. For example, in the case of a box of corn flakes, manufacturers are involved in many steps such as (a) making corn flakes from corn, (b) boxing corn flakes in attractive boxes, (c) delivering those boxes to grocers’ shelves, and (d) advertising those corn flakes to prospective consumers. These costs generally do not decrease, as commodity prices decrease. One article from 2009 says, “With the record seven-dollar corn this summer, the cost of the corn in an 18-ounce box of corn flakes was only 14 cents.”

Because of the small role that commodity prices seem to play in producing the goods and services of developed countries, it is easy for financial leaders to overlook price indications at the commodity level. (Data is available at this level of detail; the question is how closely it is examined by decision-makers.)

Figure 17. Various indices within US CPI Urban, displayed on a basis similar to that used in Figure 7 through 11. In other words, index values for later periods are compared to the average 2008 index value. CPI statistics are from US Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Figure 17 shows some components of the Consumer Price Index (CPI) on a basis similar to the trends in commodity prices shown in Figures 7 through 11. The category “Household furnishings and operations” was chosen because it has furniture in it, and I know that furniture prices have fallen because of the growing use of cheap imported furniture from China. This category shows a slight downslope in prices. The other categories all show small increases over time. If commodity prices had not decreased, prices of the other categories would likely have increased to a greater extent than they did during the period shown.

[10] Conclusion. We are likely kidding ourselves, if we think that oil prices can rise in the future, for very long, by a very large amount.

It is quite possible that oil prices will bounce back up to $80 or even $100 per barrel, for a short time. But if they rise very high, for very long, there will be adverse impacts on other segments of the economy. We can’t expect that wages will go up at the same time, so increases in oil prices are likely to lead to a decrease in the purchase of discretionary products such as meals eaten in restaurants, charitable contributions, and vacation travel. These cutbacks, in turn, can be expected to lead to layoffs in discretionary sectors. Laid off workers are likely to have difficulty repaying their loans. As a result, we are likely to head back into a recession.

As we have seen above, it is not only oil prices that need to rise; it is many other prices that need to rise as well. Making a change of this magnitude is almost certainly impossible, without “crashing” the economy.

Economists put together a simplified view of how they thought supply and demand works. This simple model seems to work, at least reasonably well, when we are away from limits. What economists did not realize is that the limits we are facing are really affordability limits, and that growing affordability depends upon productivity growth. Productivity growth in turn depends on a growing quantity of cheap-to-produce energy supplies. The term “demand,” and the two-dimensional supply-demand model, hide these issues.

The whole issue of limits has not been well understood. Peak Oil enthusiasts assumed that we were “running out” of an essential energy product. When this view was combined with the economist’s view of supply and demand, the conclusion was, “Of course, oil prices will rise, to fix the situation.”

Few stopped to realize that there is a second way of viewing the situation. What is falling is the resources that people need to have in order to have jobs that pay well. When this happens, we should expect prices to fall, rather than to rise, because workers are increasingly unable to buy the output of the economy.

If we look back at what happened historically, there have been many situations in which economies have collapsed. In fact, this is probably what we should expect as we approach limits, rather than expecting high oil prices. If collapse should take place, we should expect widespread debt defaults and major problems with the financial system. Governments are likely to have trouble collecting enough taxes, and may ultimately fail. Non-elite workers have historically come out badly in collapses. With low wages and high taxes, they have often succumbed to epidemics. We have our own epidemic now–the opioid epidemic.



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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2,280 Responses to Why Oil Prices Can’t Bounce Very High; Expect Deflation Instead

  1. Cliffhanger says:

    Russian ‘cannibal couple’ detained after ‘eating’ up to 30 victims since 1999

    • Joel says:

      Saw that earlier in the day, the guy was taking “selfies” with a bucket of victim parts IIRC.

      • Cliffhanger says:

        I read that one of the little girls who survived the Donner Party journey. Refused her whole life to speak with historians about the trip. Because she said she could never get over the feeling of having to eat her mother and little brother, along the way..

  2. Cliffhanger says:

    According to SA they have a 69 years worth of oil reserves ; but they can’t figure out how to pump enough oil to pay their bills. LOL

  3. Cliffhanger says:

    Crazy man rides the subway on the outside

  4. Harry Gibbs says:

    “What’s unusual, and unnerving, is that the Permian is still thrumming with activity after prices cratered for the stuff it pumps out. Crude is trading for around $50 a barrel, but this is the hottest oil patch anywhere on Earth, a swing producer influencing the trajectory of global markets and threatening OPEC.

    “That either means the industry has become so incredibly efficient that production can continue to rise even if prices don’t, or that it’s throwing money after a mirage. Pruett, chief executive officer of Midland, Texas-based Elevation Resources LLC, is more and more concerned about the latter.

    “Oil men are innately optimistic,” he said, “and sometimes our optimism is our own worst enemy.”

    “…By this point, “we’ve given up all of our profit margin,” he said, referring to the industry. “We’re over-capitalized, we’re over-drilling and, if prices don’t rise, we might be facing a double dip in drilling…””


  5. psile says:

    The floorboards are really creaking now…


    UK banks are ‘underestimating’ potential losses on credit card and other unsecured loans warns Bank of England

    The Bank of England has warned that UK lenders are underestimating their potential losses on credit card and other unsecured loans to customers and is compelling them to hold an extra £10bn of capital to protect their balance sheets in the event an economic shock.

    A statement from the Bank’s Financial Policy Committee (FPC) released on Monday emphasises the continuing concern of regulators over the rapid growth of UK consumer borrowing and the potential vulnerability of both the borrowers and the institutions making the loans if things go wrong.

    “The FPC judges that lenders overall are placing too much weight on the recent performance of consumer lending in benign conditions as an indicator of underlying credit quality. As a result, they have been underestimating the losses they could incur in a downturn,” it said.

    Consumer credit grew at a rate of 9.8 per cent in the year to July, reflecting booming car loans and credit card lending.

    • Harry Gibbs says:

      “Moodys have downgraded UK debt to AA2, the lowest ever credit rating for UK citing “Brexit challenges” as the main reason for the drop. The UK lost its remaining AAA rating (S&P) four days after Brexit vote – but this is the first ever time a major credit rating agency has cut the country to third rank.”


      • psile says:

        Hi Harry, I’ve found Tim Morgan’s Surplus Energy Economics website to be outstanding for understanding the parlous nature of the UK economy. What’s more he has a firm grasp of the role of energy in the equation.

        • Harry Gibbs says:

          Thanks Psile. Tim Morgan is good stuff and, unfortunately, I agree with him about the state of the UK economy. As a borrowing entity we have been running on the fumes of former glories. I’m sure there will be further downgrades, especially if Corbyn gets into power with his magical money tree policies.

          The overall picture is so gloomy – the entire North Sea oil industry is tax-negative, business confidence is cratering, the weak £ is pushing up living costs, wages are stagnant, household and consumer debt levels are dangerously elevated, the wind is coming out of the property market’s sails… And then there’s the impending chaos of Brexit, by which the populace of the UK has in effect voted us from the core to the periphery as the collapse process gathers steam.

          • Cliffhanger says:

            London has turned into a nasty little backwater -Richard Dawkins

            • Harry Gibbs says:

              I think he made the comment about England in its entirety rather than just London – quite a generalisation, although he does have a point. The murder of Labour MP Jo Cox in the run-up to the Brexit referendum felt like a watershed to me, ushering in a new era of, yes, nastiness.

              Personally I find Richard Dawkins almost as tiresome an ideologue as the theists he opposes.

            • Tim Groves says:

              “Why, Sir, you find no man, at all intellectual, who is willing to leave London. No, Sir, when a man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford.”
              — Samuel Johnson

              On the other hand: “Paris is a nightmare now.”
              — Karl Lagerfeld

  6. Cliffhanger says:

    The hidden risk to the economy in corporate balance sheets -Associated Press


    “There’s a misconception that companies are swimming in cash,” says Andrew Chang, a director at S&P Global Ratings. “They’re actually drowning in debt.”

  7. psile says:

    From the land that thinks the whole world’s out to get them,

    Gas crisis ‘three times bigger’ than thought, Malcolm Turnbull says

    The looming gas crisis is three times worse than previously thought, according to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, who has ordered gas giants and state governments to shore up gas supplies to east coast consumers or face strict export limits.

    Mr Turnbull on Monday said the government had received two reports on the east coast gas market from the Australian Energy Market Operator and the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, showing gas shortages in the east coast domestic market over the next two years “will be considerably higher than that estimated six months ago”.

    “It’s estimated there will be a shortfall … of around 110 petajoules of gas – more than three times the figure we were advised earlier in the year,” Mr Turnbull said.

    The first ex.plos.ive belt was invented by Aussies. Foster’s was the catalyst.

    • Yorchichan says:

      Two books that should be read by everyone who thinks there are no differences whatsoever between the races:



      • Fast Eddy says:

        Hitler also believed in racial superiority — that Aryans were the master race…

        He particularly thought Slavic races were inferior… and blacks of course.

        I am of Slavic decent ….

        Anyone want to play a game of logic with me?

        I have a few black American friends in Hong Kong – they all hold MBA’s and/or finance degrees from US schools — they work for global banks….

        You are a taxi driver.

        But I guess it makes you feel better to claim that you are part of the superior race…

        Even the bumpkin who fills the water bottles gets to kiss the Stanley Cup if his team wins….

        Reiterating my point — statistics can be gamed to prove any point … IQ tests are influenced by environment…

        If a white boy is raised by a crack whore in a ghetto — and a black boy is raised by a caring affluent white family who gives the child the best education money can buy

        Who do you think will score higher on the IQ test?

        This race discussion is illogical. Even within a race there are massive differences.

        Or do you think that people within a race are all clones????

        Worry about your own ability. Worry about your own intelligence.

        Instead of attempting to make up for your lack of accomplishment by hiding behind a claim of being a member of what you believe is a superior racial group.

        • Yorchichan says:

          I’ve never claimed whites are superior to blacks, although there is ample evidence that on average they have higher IQs.

          You have previously attributed blacks dominance in sports to selective breeding for slavery. Please explain why evolution can take place over a few hundred years and yet failed to take place over the tens of thousands of years when the races were separated.

          You have previously made clear how unimpressed you are by academic qualifications (PhDs), yet now you are trying to impress me with finance degrees and MBAs (lol). Which is it: do higher qualifications have value or not?

          Here’s that well known white supremacist Sam Harris on race and IQ:


          Time for bed. Four student nurses asked me in for pizza and a chat tonight. Taxiing can be fun 😉 I pity your banker friends.

          • Fast Eddy says:

            Can you show me a programme where high IQ whites were bred with other high IQ whites with the goal being to create high IQ children?

            I am not impressed by PHDs … but in terms of accomplishment … it does take some ability to get hired by an investment bank…

            As for driving a cab… with GPS ubiquitous… even I could do that…

            I doubt they would swap places with you… they probably picked up some hottie met at a club on the weekend.. took her out for dinner… and home to the love shack for a little more than a chat….

            • Yorchichan says:

              It takes the right personality and connections to be hired by an investment bank. I don’t have the personality, accent or desire for it. When I’ve walked around the City watching the bankers on their way to work in their suits, they don’t look so happy to me. Tell me, how do you measure success in life?

              Once upon a time I came top in the year at Uni at pure maths and stats (100% in finals), despite missing much of the year with illness. I’d wipe the floor in any IQ test with you or your banker buddies and I’ve no desire to sleep with whores (who I meet plenty of).

              I notice you didn’t touch on the question of why evolution stood still for tens of thousands of years. Keep writing your self contradictory BS. Keep the ad hominem attacks coming. You’re funny, but unlike Joe Pesci, you are a clown.

            • Exactly.
              Lack of energy and growth aside, I realized that the “base” of conservatism doesn’t stand a chance under an industrial society. Conservatism have a more suitable set up by an economy remaining rural/localized.
              Industrial society is too complex for the way conservatives sees things, again, I am talking about the base of conservatism that are very fundamentalist.
              As the industrial fails, most likely end next decade for the vast majorities, the conservative base lacks the proper structure, because religion and “rugged down free market” nonsense are not gonna save them. In fact, religion will make them less prepared for the industrial society collapse but, it will harmonize them together.
              My point is: The conservatives will be in need of a control structure but because they’re fundamentalists (weak), the demagogues will take the opportunity to control them without offering them anything in return, besides empty promises.
              The liberals would, at least, take from the rich and run deficits to give some to them.
              The choice is clear in my view.

      • Tim Groves says:

        Lots to mull over here. First, let’s take “race”. Is it a set of discrete categories designed so that each of us falls into one of them? Is any broad general definition of “race” available that all the experts agree on? Is it genetically based or does it have a cultural component? Is Barrack Obama a member of the black race despite his mother being a member of the white race? Or is he half black/half white?

        Next, let’s take “intelligence”? Is it a discrete ability or something else? Is any broad general definition of “intelligence” available that all the experts agree on? Do we use the word “intelligence” to describe only one kind ability? Are each of us as individuals always equally intelligent and are we intelligent in the same way in all the different possible situations?

        I could go on, but some of you get the point. And those of you who don’t get the point by now won’t get the point no matter how long I go on because you are not intelligent enough to grok it.

        I am indebted to Berger and Luckman for their 1966 publication The Social Construction of Reality, because thanks to that book it became fashionable in leftist, progressive, cultural Marxist circles to say “xxxx is a social construct”. We often hear things like race is a social construct, gender is a social construct, age is a social construct, virginity is a social construct. Sam Harris got into meditation and began preaching that the self is a social contruct. Susan Sontag wrote that race is a social construct but that white people are the cancer of human history. I would go further in arguing that Sam Harris and Susan Sontag are social constructs, but I digress.

        Anarghya Vardhana argues forcefully, and some would say persuasively, that intelligence is also a social construct, and a particularly divisive one. And Anarghya is no dumb bunny.


        So if all these smart folks are right, then “race” and “intelligence” are both labels that are placed on individuals in order to categorize them; they are like two square pegs that each of us is squeezed into regardless of our actual individual shape.

    • Cliffhanger says:

      Guns,Germs, and Steel. Won the Pulitzer as well. Great book

    • Kim says:

      Perhaps we could discuss those books, except that many blogs do not allow people to pose racist arguments or revisionist historical accounts.

      Hitler! Nazi! Excuse me. Leftist Tourettes.

    • Kim says:

      As long as we are doing bookclub and expanding each other’s horizons, you may enjoy this one. It particularly addresses the discussions in Guns, Germs, and Steel.


  8. jazIntico says:

    “Taking the knee” – amazing how it’s dividing the US. In England, we’d probably call it “taking the pee.”


  9. Cliffhanger says:

    Josh Norman DB of the Redskins said post game interview. “It’s sad all this tyranny we have to face under this POTUS.” LOL

  10. Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

    11 killed and 29 wounded last weekend in Chicago:


    now over 500 this year!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    and most of the dead are blacks killed by other blacks.

    where’s Obama’s help?

    where was Obama for 8 years?

    oh, he didn’t try to help because he knew he would fail?

    why aren’t these murders protested at Chicago pro sports events?

    film at 11.

    • J. H. Wyoming says:

      What is it you would suggest O have done? Is it something T can do now that’s he’s in office spouting off about everything from A-Z with no major policy changes to show for it. In fact, what happened to the R interest in balancing the budget? What happened to stopping NK from further developing nukes and ICBM’s? All we’re getting from T is a lot of hot air irritating billions of people and blatant attempts to get rid of the signature health care bill O did help pass that has helped 10’s of millions of people, so he can reduce taxes to the top 5%. T doesn’t care about people, only his own ego but that’s wearing extremely thin. He’s an abject failure that’s very unfortunate for the American people.

      • Jarle B says:

        “What is it you would suggest O have done? ”

        Well, as the first “black” president you would expect him to talk about the blacks more often then previous presidents, but as far as I recall Obama hardly mentioned the blacks if at all …

  11. Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

    “The Redskins are linking arms as they get ready for the anthem. Some Redskins are kneeling: Brian Quick and Jamison Crowder.”

    that’s before tonight’s football game.

    hey, Eddy, do you think they were singing Koombaya?

    interesting fact:

    most players linking arms before today’s games.

    small minority were kneeling.

    what’s up with that?

    why did the majority decline to kneel?

    is the kneeling divisive?

    is the linking of arms inclusive?

    what does that say about the originator of the kneeling?

  12. Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

    WTI $50.58



    market rebalancing?

    BAU tonight, baby!

    • Cliffhanger says:

      Is the Brotherhood even real?
      That Winston you will never know…
      -Orwell 1984

      • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

        don’t you think that we just have to accept that we will most likely never know who TPTB “really” are?

        or is that too Conspearacy Theary-ish?

        I mean, no one “has to” accept it and anyone could spend all their resources trying to find out, but why bother?

        • Cliffhanger says:

          I don’t care about TPTB because they don’t rule the world. They just own the largest chunks of it. The real rulers of the world are the ‘investors’ in the world markets. And there are millions of them. That is why once the permanent oil shortage hit the market in a few years. Assuming the global economy holds together that long. The worlds investors will shit freaking bricks. I am certain that if there are any powers that be they either ignore what is coming and hope that other people will take care of things for them. Or they know that collapse is inevitable and they will try to block it out and not think about it. Knowing they are impotent to do anything. And will try to enjoy their fun in the sun. Until the energy shortages come then hit the road or go hide in a bunker. And try to ride out the store for as long as it takes to come out safe.

          • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

            “I don’t care about TPTB because they don’t rule the world. They just own the largest chunks of it. The real rulers of the world are the ‘investors’ in the world markets. And there are millions of them.”

            I dunno…

            I think the ones who own the largest chunks also wield the most power.

            but that’s just another little Conspearacy Theary.

  13. psile says:

    The dissolution of some of the oldest nation-states in the world is soon to take place. Spain, France, the UK. These are all facing increasing centripetal forces in their inevitable rendezvous with ̶d̶e̶s̶t̶i̶n̶y̶ entropy.

    Spain In Crisis: Catalan Police Reject Madrid Takeover, Vow To “Resist”

    Spain found itself on the verge of a full-blown sovereign crisis on Saturday, after the “rebel region” of Catalonia rejected giving more control to the central government in defiance of authorities in Madrid who are trying to suppress an independence referendum on Oct. 1.

    As tensions rise ahead of the planned Catalan referendum on October 1, and as Madrid’s crackdown on separatist passions took a turn for the bizarre overnight when as we reported Spain’s plan to send boatloads of military police to Catalonia to halt the referendum backfired with dockers in two ports staging a boycott and refused access, on Saturday Spain’s Public Prosecutor’s Office told Catalan Police chief Josep Lluis Trapero that his officers must now obey orders from a senior state-appointed police coordinator, Spanish news agency EFE reported on Saturday.

    The Catalan Police, however, disagreed and as Bloomberg reports, the SAP union – the largest trade group for the 17,000-member Catalan Police, known as Mossos d’Esquadra – said it would resist hours after prosecutors Saturday ordered that it accept central-government coordination. The rejection echoed comments by Catalan separatist authorities.

    “We don’t accept this interference of the state, jumping over all existing coordination mechanisms,” the region’s Interior Department chief Joaquim Forn said in brief televised comments. “The Mossos won’t renounce exercising their functions in loyalty to the Catalan people.”

    The Mossos are one of the symbols of Catalonia’s autonomy and for many Catalans the prosecutor’s decision may be reminiscent of the 1936-39 Spanish Civil War and subsequent dictatorship of Francisco Franco, when the Mossos were abolished.


    • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

      did you forget Italy?

      Portugal Italy Greece Spain were the PIGS, right?

      so what are France UK Spain?

      please answer with four letters.

      thank you.

    • J. H. Wyoming says:

      …”centripetal forces”…


    • xabier says:

      El Cid: famous for having tricked the bankers of his day by giving them a ‘treasure chest’ full of sand in return for real gold to finance his wars. Bravo!

      And what exactly is the truth worth of the real estate assets owned by the Spanish banks today? 🙂

  14. JT Roberts says:

    This NFL MLB protest is pure lunacy. What are they protesting? If you are taking up the cause of discrimination or social justice why is it only after The President speaks out that you express an opinion? Seems to me it’s a knee jerk reaction to limit free speech. What’s wrong with someone expressing their view? Isn’t that what being liberal is all about? Or have we forgotten that liberal comes from libertarian? Is it better to have individuals afraid to express themselves and dependent on public polls to determine their own mind on matters?

    The social fabric of this country has devolved into a cesspool of emotion devoid of all reason. How convenient considering the entire system is about to plung over the cliff of net energy decline. Rather then a cognitive discussion of the present peril we are subject to people cutting each other throats either figuratively or literally.

    Where there once were minds there is now only mush. Reading comprehension has become a study of unique metaphorical expressions in an attempt to impress an egomaniac with a PHD.

    Once a psyche has been conditioned to react to signals that conform its thoughts to a collective conclusion based on the bias of its senior member for the reward of promotion we have an individual who can not and will not be able to think for themselves. This is a product of university perpetuated through corporate and military structures.

    The ” Land of the Free and Brave” if ever it was. Is a prison system to shackle the minds and bodies through manipulation, economic slavery, and out right imprisonment. There can be no freedom without freedom of expression. Unfortunately the crazy is just getting started. As the pressure mounts with economic down turns it will become like rats in a tunnel fleeing a fire. There will be no restraint because there is nothing to restrain them. Critical thinking has capitulated to a frontal lobotomy in masse.

    • Cliffhanger says:

      This NFL MLB protest is pure lunacy. What are they protesting?

      They are protesting the fact that we have more laws per cap than any other country on earth. We have more government officers per cap than any country on earth. We have more people in jails per cap than any country on earth. Even more than the socialist Soviet Union did under the height of Stalin. And Liberal comes from Latin as in Book, as in Library…

    • Fast Eddy says:

      Imagine the feeling of panic …. when the electricity goes off… and after a couple of days it does not come back on …. and people begin to realize that once the food in the cupboard runs out….

      They are on their own….

      The survival instinct is going to kick in … hard… and formerly kind people will not be so kind… desperation will change people …

      • Cliffhanger says:

        My power went off for about 24 hours a few months ago because of partial tornado. And it was a living hell. I had no computer. My smart phone ran out of the battery after using it nonstop as the only means of entertainment. And all my books are pretty much all on my Kindle account. I didn’t have any candles or anything. And I live alone and have no pets. So it was just me and the darkness.

        • Fast Eddy says:

          I highly recommend that people turn off the electricity for a 24 hour period…. just to see what it feels like….

  15. Lastcall says:

    Hmm another escape route for the powers that be; ‘US Fl.ag has loss of international status as a result of NFL Protests’ will read the headlines. No other possible reason is there?

    Add this to;
    …. blaming deniers for Globe L Warm-ups…
    ….blaming scientists for earthquakes..
    ….blaming consumers for not consuming…
    …blaming Tr.hump for well everything..
    …blaming Russians for Tr.hump and everything else…

    consequences going get nasty!

  16. Third World person says:

    after what is happening in america now
    it remind of quote from goodfellas
    To me, being a gangster was better than being president of the United States
    btw on side note here is great scene from goodfellas

  17. Cliffhanger says:

    United Kingdom’s Oil, Gas Reserves May Be Depleted Within 10 Years, – The Weather Channel

    Why would the Weather Channel run a peak oil story? Because they are owned by GE which is one of the largest manufactures for Wind Turbines. I guess you have to give them credit. Nothing will scare the sheeple into buying worthless renewable’s like telling them they are going to run out of Fossil Fuels, and soon!

    • adonis says:

      renewables are our only chance for humanity to endure if the peak oil message is now being told to the public it is great news at least the truth is being told and as for being worthless even some power in the future will be better than nothing if BAU-LITE is going to be our foreseeable future . the powers that be are setting this all up and BAU-LITE where growth is not required will be our collective future think more of a communist or socialist system

  18. xabier says:


    Regarding who runs the show, here’s a brief tale.

    A friend was setting up a hedge fund, and went looking for likely punters.

    He was quite non-plussed to find himself having several conversations like this:

    ‘I am Mr ‘X’. I work with Mr ‘Y’ (real names, these, or were they? ), and we advise A Person of Ultra-High Net Worth, whose name you need not concern yourself with at the moment. We are always interested in hearing serious propositions which might be of value to Mr APUHNW. If you present something attractive me today, Mr Y may well be interested in meeting you.’

    He said it was ‘unlike anything he had encountered in the City (of London) before’.

    • Thanks for this anecdotal account, they are usually the best.

      In popular culture, similarly as in perhaps one of top5 in the genre is that movie 1977 featuring Klaus Kinski as depicting the ultimate ownership layer way above ordinary biz, govs, police, media, and so on..

      There must have been some reshuffle ongoing in the mid late 1970s as a lot of info has spilled out during this brief period in film, investigative news – literature and economic publishing. Before and after it was not interesting topic, allowed at all, banned, or peoplez completely brainwashed not looking into it anymore..

  19. Cliffhanger says:

    In your statement you assert that our actions, even though peaceful, must be condemned because they precipitate violence. But is this a logical assertion? Isn’t this like condemning a robbed man because his possession of money precipitated the evil act of robbery? Isn’t this like condemning Socrates because his unswerving commitment to truth and his philosophical inquiries precipitated the act by the misguided populace in which they made him drink hemlock? Isn’t this like condemning Jesus because his unique God consciousness and never ceasing devotion to God’s will precipitated the evil act of crucifixion? We must come to see that, as the federal courts have consistently affirmed, it is wrong to urge an individual to cease his efforts to gain his basic constitutional rights because the quest may precipitate violence. Society must protect the robbed and punish the robber.

    -Dr MLK ” Letter from a Birmingham Jail”

    • J. H. Wyoming says:

      That’s it in a nutshell. TPTB want a complicit populace regardless of their circumstances or handling by authorities. But if people don’t act out in response to inequities then nothing changes. Peaceful marches may have worked for Ghandi after x # of millions joined in creating a lot of embarrassment for the Brits, but in most circumstances the only way to get respect is to strike back. Taking a knee better get the right attention and response or people with less to lose will do a whole lot more than something symbolic. I say good for those players, because it’s not ok to pull people over and then find some flimsy excuse to shoot them dead. I’m disappointed white players aren’t joining in. If all people can support all people at all times then we will be truly united. There’s still a long way to go.

      • Cliffhanger says:

        It saddens me that people continue to use the line of logic of “you can protest, but not here. You can protest, but not like that. You can protest but not in a way that inconveniences me.” At my lions game in Detroit. Both teams just locked arms with each other. And the singer was a black guy who at the end of the anthem he took a knee and raised a fist in the air.

      • Cliffhanger says:

        Very well put JH. I think most issue have many complex reasons. And the media and most people in general always want simple uncomplicated answers. For example, retail is getting killed in America. The media says ‘Its just Amazon”. Case closed….

        I think the same sort of logic applies to the NFL protesting. Basically since about 2000 the league has gone from about 50% African American. To around about 70% now. And many white fans don’t want to admit it to themselves or any others that battle of races, has basically been lost.. The reason is because people like to project their own self imagine onto the athletes they look up to. And its very hard to do that with someone who looks very different and grows up in an area that is very different, and of course last but not least, dresses very different usually. So the whole league and players are basically skating on very thin ice with these sorts of white fans. And now that these protest have started it gives them the excuse to lash out and move away from football via boycott. Even though it was basically inevitable anyways in one way or another.

        • Kim says:

          You say all of that, yet I suppose you would deny that there are significant natural differences between the races such that whites might be justified or entitled in wanting to freely associate with people like themselves (their own race).

          And of course, long time habitual felon Aaron Fernandez became a murderer because of multiple concussions. Large slices of the endlessly dependent and chronically violent and criminal black population thus also have no agency or moral responsibility.

          What do they call it? The soft racism of low expectations?

          You guys crack me up.

    • jazIntico says:

      I remember that the Provisional IRA used to “kneecap” their enemies with a gun.


  20. Cliffhanger says:

    While I am eagerly anticipating the great “knee down of 2017” where hundreds of players kneel, how much you wanna bet that right wing media’s lead story is going to be a combination of “when are NFL team owners going to lock out the players’ union for political interference?” and “should the NFL continue to have an anti-trust exemption or should it be removed?” Then they will bring in talking points about how much taxpayer money gets funneled to these teams for their stadiums, etc. and therefore they shouldn’t be allowed to engage in political speech (but churches can, now) and so if the players speak, the teams and the league should be stripped of its anti-trust and tax exempt status. It’s gonna happen. LOL

  21. Cliffhanger says:

    The USSR lied about their economic data before they collapsed. Seem familiar?

  22. Cliffhanger says:

    I predict 200+ NFL players will take a knee today during the anthem. Including some white players even…And NFL ratings will be down by 25% on Monday…

    • Cliffhanger says:

      Actually . The ratings will most likely be huge this week because many non official football fans will tune into see the protest against Trump. But next week they will fall off a cliff.

    • grayfox says:

      After Trumps remarks about the NFL and the response by some NFL owners, I’ll bet many fans are having a Maalox moment deciding which side to support, Trump or the NFL. The game may be doomed for another reason: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/07/25/sports/football/nfl-cte.html?
      Also, why call it football? Only the punter and the kicker kick the ball ordinarily.

      • Kurt says:

        No shortage of players given the salaries. The fans could care less about cte. So, the game will continue.

        • Cliffhanger says:

          Its not about the NFL players, it’s about the youth and the parents allowing their kids to play football. If parents who are most of the time somewhat nervous about their children playing any contact sports already. Start moving them away in large numbers the sport will have no future. It;s just like every organized religion that is why they are obsessed with their members over breeding like rabbits. And have nursery’s and Sunday school’s and youth groups, etc.

        • Cliffhanger says:

          Another blow to Goodell and the NFL this week besides the news that their ratings for last sunday were down by 15%. Was that former player Aaron Hernandez who murdered someone and killed himself in prison. His autopsy came back and they ruled he had severe CTE. And his mother sued the NFL this week upon finding out. Now Goodell gets this whole Trump situation. Geez he has some crap on his plate.

          • J. H. Wyoming says:

            There is a movie with Will Smith on CTE in the NFL. Quite informative and alarming. Mike Webster who had CTE real bad lived in his pick up truck in Pittsburgh, the very city he played in. Concussions are damaging, but the 2nd one in a short period of time does the most damage, so now they have a strict policy of pulling players after the 1st concussion, but that still means they can have numerous concussions a season, let along over a career. Even people with 3 or more concussions can have behavioral problems.

          • Fast Eddy says:

            Football is an insane sport… anyone who puts their kid into this should be up for child abuse

            Concussion expert says extent of brain damage in youth football players ‘took my breath away’

            In the past three years, 47 kids have died playing football.


            • Fast Eddy says:

              That said… maybe everyone should be made to play football…

              Survival of the fittest and all that jazz….

        • Attention Americans.

          The correct phrase is:

          ‘couldn’t care less’


          ‘could care less’

          Thank you.

          • jazIntico says:

            As a Brit I think it’s not wrong, just intended as irony. Think, “AS IF the fans could care less…”.

            Trump will probably send a drone to your house now.

          • Kurt says:

            Could care less is faster to type and the meaning is essentially the same. Glad to know we have a childish grammar corrector on the site.

      • J. H. Wyoming says:

        Because of concussions the NFL may need to go to flag football instead of tackling. We played that in college and you have two flags, one on each side of your waist held on with Velcro. Once pulled, the ball is dead at that location.

  23. jazIntico says:

    Long before he was president, Donald Trump talks about the history of capitalism.


    Now here in the UK, some are talking of the reactionary Conservative fool and fundamentalist Catholic, Jacob Rees Mogg, as the next prime minister. See how poorly he handles his interview with “Ali G”.

    • Harry Gibbs says:

      Jacob R-M is a pompous prig and I doubt electable even in these confused times thanks to his frankly medieval Catholic Weltanschauung. Mind you, one looks across the entire political spectrum in the UK in vain and despair for one individual that you would actually be comfortable spending five minutes with at a drinks party, let alone trust to guide the UK through the daunting economic and political challenges ahead.

      • I think David Miliband was the last of the ”believables” here, with him I think the country might have stood a chance of survival

        • xabier says:

          It will be the old 1970’s -style revolutionary Corbyn next, What a dismal political panorama!

          • Im afraid you are right

            Corbyn will borrow money to finance his socialist dream, convinced he can print what he needs.
            He has no other option.

            He has this weird idea that people can be made to accept ”equality” and actually like each other.

            • Cliffhanger says:

              Anything would seem like a dream compared to Capitalism where 8 people hoard as much wealth as 3.6 billion combined. But i know, I know, we can’t redistribute the wealth. because they “earned it’. Cuckaberg, and Gates and Buffett are all known for being some of the hardest working human beings that ever walked the face of the earth. I mean I have heard horror stories about the offices of FB and Microsoft. Where once their perfect 69 degrees air conditioning went out for an entire day. And they were forced to loosen one of their Ralph Lauren shirt buttons..Talk about hard living!

            • The idea that Gates, Buffet and ZBerg are major stakeholders of the system (around top ten) is hopelessly naive and ridiculous. I doubt very much they are anywhere near to be true tier one shareholders of the global dominant central banking system, only Buffet could be perhaps a junior partner inside some faction-clan, i.e. few single digit % of global wealth at best..

              Players and public figures in their respective fields, yes that’s about it.

      • xabier says:

        A friend of mine was interested in donating to the Conservatives, and he was invited to some dinners, finding himself twice seated next to George Osborne, a man whose face alone I have never been able to bear.

        Surprisingly, he found him to be well-informed and very pleasant. As, I suppose, we all would be when after cash.

        Although did think it beyond Osborne in any circumstances, just like the Young Conservatives who made my flesh creep at university

        No pigs were involved, as far as I know. 🙂

    • xabier says:

      The trauma of being the son of Lord Rees Mogg must be considerable…..

    • jazIntico says:

      Trump says in the video that “hundreds of millions of years ago, people were doing business, and they were trading in rocks and stones”.

      Hundreds of millions of years ago?!

      From Wikipedia:

      “Homo is the genus that comprises the species Homo sapiens. The genus is between 2 and 3 million years old.”

      So Trump is even more of a dope and a doofus and a duffer than I thought possible.

      • xabier says:

        Give him a break: he did grasp that it was a long time, a really long time ago.

        Unlike many statements by politicians, it did at least approximate to the truth….. 🙂

      • Tim Groves says:

        You can’t always trust Wikidpedophilia to get its facts straight.

        But we do know that not all men are Homos and very few are sapient.

        • Cliffhanger says:

          Reuters ran a story back in 2010 that the CIA and NSA had developed computer programs to hack into wiki and make edits. Reuters for whatever reason took the story down later but I read it via the wayback machine. And they were editing out the details of the Iraqi torturing of prisoners in that abu grave scandal.

  24. Sven Røgeberg says:

    He’s not reflecting on the fact that energy matters, but worth reading anyway.
    And it is technology firms – American companies but also Chinese – that create the false impression that the global economy has recovered and everything is back to normal. Since January, the valuations of just four firms – Alphabet, Amazon, Facebook and Microsoft – have grown by an amount greater than the entire GDP of oil-rich Norway. Who would want to see this bubble burst? Nobody; in fact, those in power would rather see it grow some more.

  25. Fast Eddy says:

    I would add that confidence in the system is pretty much shot through — the money men are not oblivious to the disconnect between the markets and earnings…

    Everyone knows the CBs are the markets….

    But do they head for the exists? Do they short?


    Instead they pile in and ride the CBs coat tails …. don’t fight the Fed … really does mean… don’t fight the Fed…

    Plenty of fund managers have tried — and they went out of business.

    • That’s the little secret about what is it like to be inside or close enough to the proverbial top loop, essentially #1 you know what type of game is being played, who are the major players involved and their interests – stakes, what are the probabilities of outcomes for future moves..

      So, in times of “normal” reflation cycles, they short and then buy for the pennies and ride it to the stars. After few decades and or generations, your are the real deal (not only nominal) billionaire and an insider, quasi nobility status.

      And from longer perspective, when the game runs out of expansion potential, gets almost solid like a frozen honey, most likely today, just keeping the status quo and enjoying the privilege and existing money/rent is good enough, no need for extra orgies..

      However, when you find yourself in such advanced stage-phase of sequentially ordered cycles, the only way forward is some sort of wiping out wave of destruction, eventually setting new play fields, players, decorations.

      Hence why the world of tomorrow (if there would be such a thing for humans at all) belongs largely to a different group, today’s hands on low-mid rank mil/police/fire dpt./gang/reenactment mil aficionados etc.

      That’s how human history has always been..

      • Tim Groves says:

        Remember those Galapagos finches? When times get really tough, it’s the guys and gals – and mostly guys – with the right shaped beaks and the most stamina that survive, and they survive in part thanks to the deaths of their less able and less well adapted cousins, whose disappearance affords them a larger share of the remaining scare resources.

      • Joel says:

        “Hence why the world of tomorrow belongs largely to a different group”

        Though fictional, this Negan character uses a hands on management approach and believes in the importance of strong 1st impressions. Brutal video, not for everyone, yet a quite popular show.


        Gang membership maybe a lot more popular in the future voluntary or not.

      • Fast Eddy says:

        Anyone could get in on this game – no need to be an insider…

        The Fed said nearly 10 years ago — Do Not Fight the Fed.

        Anyone taking that literally – and it was mean to be literally taken — should have piled all their cash into assets – the stock market – property etc…

        The returns have been magnificent.

  26. Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

    meanwhile, black citizens (mostly young black men) are still shooting each other this weekend in Chicago.

    so then many others feel unsafe and get more guns to protect themselves (from other black shooters).

    is this what is called a feedback loop?

    blacks keep shooting each other (90+% rate) in inner cities.

    BLM keeps saying nothing.

    • Fast Eddy says:

      Perhaps the white man should not have dragged these people out of Africa and chained them up … whipped them … and worked them harder than barnyard animals…

      And these problems would not exist?

      • Fast Eddy says:

        In summary…

      • xabier says:

        It ain’t history, it ain’t injustice, it ain’t race it’s…….drugs.

        Same thing happening in London, Liverpool, Manchester, on a different scale of course.

        Drugs would turn even Paradise into Hell.

        • Fast Eddy says:

          Based on the true story of journalist Gary Webb, the film takes place in the mid-1990s. Webb uncovered the CIA’s alleged role in importing cocaine into the U.S. to secretly fund the Nicaraguan Contra rebels through the manufacture and sale of crack. Despite enormous pressure to stay away, Webb chose to pursue the story and went public with his evidence, publishing the series called “Dark Alliance”. He then experienced a vicious smear campaign fueled by the CIA, during which he found himself defending his integrity, his family, and his life.[5]


        • Cliffhanger says:

          I bet Soro’s has been doping their Gatorade at half time!

        • Artleads says:

          Drugs is just another of endless symptoms of an original “mistake.” Where this “mistake” originated is too big a subject for here and now. The mistake of racism would have to be FACED to be remotely understood or addressed. But, no, drugs doesn’t cut it. I didn’t mention European imperialism, a twin mountain to racism? And the genocide of the Indians was worse than slavery, if you can imagine it. An, beyond that, the suppression of women has no words to describe it. But at least, women outnumber men. If you focus on gender, you might be able to pull the rug out from under all the other bullshit.

          • Artleads says:

            Then what? When you run out of oil, will you go back to Africa and drag them back here to use their muscle power again?

            • Artleads says:

              Sorry Xabier, this was meant as a response to “name,” not you.

            • nope.avi says:

              Stop foaming at the mouth and think things through instead of “being intuitive” or whatever you call your irrational,ignorant rambling. There wouldn’t be enough wood to construct enough old-school slave ships to transport large numbers of slaves over long distances. That would would be more useful locally.

            • Fast Eddy says:


              I pretty much ignore Art’s incoherent illogical ramblings….

          • nope.avi says:

            The majority of Indians died from European diseases. There was no mass-genocide, except in the minds of neurotic liberals, who probably hate their parents.

            Muslims were involved in the African slave trade way before Europeans got involved.

            They did it too, but most black people have nothing but positive things to say about Muslims and Islam. It seems to me European racism was worse than the forced labor, beatings, and occasional murder.

            Aside from scale, nothing Europeans did was particularly unique. All civilizations have a history of social stratification and slavery. The desire to have a comfortable life is what drove the demand for slaves. Why is there a fixation on injustices chiefly committed by white Christian men as if they were the source of all human injustices, by you?

            • Artleads says:

              “Aside from scale, nothing Europeans did was particularly unique”

              Scale matters. No set (“race”) of people is better or worse than any other. But it’s been said that white males are the proximate owners of the catastrophe we face. And the efficiency, hard work and high IQ in which the set takes pride has greatly to do with the onset of this catastrophe. It wasn’t women or Muslims at the helm of this Titanic; it was men. It happened to be white men, and they got trapped in an earth killing narrative of progress. They had a bad idea and were too successful with it for their and everyone else’s good.

              “All civilizations have a history of social stratification and slavery.”

              That is immaterial. It is this civilization that is set to bring us down, not any other. It is not helpful to evade that fact, or look for other civilizations to blame.

              “The desire to have a comfortable life is what drove the demand for slaves.”

              Too bad. That doesn’t help the slave. Don’t expect sympathy.

              “Why is there a fixation on injustices chiefly committed by white Christian men as if they were the source of all human injustices, by you?”

              Christian men have been in charge for a few centuries now and have spread their version of civilization to every corner of the world. It is the ultimate civilization. But how helpful is that to the chances for continued life on earth?

          • nope.avi says:

            You have a few things wrong here. Women outnumber men in only the “old” category, because there are more old women than old men.
            There are more young men than young women. In most, parts of the world, the ratio of young men to young women is lopsided. Secondly, focusing on gender does nothing to give any shape to your rambling. upper class white women benefited from having black women as slaves and as domestic servants. Without the succession of slavery and industrialization, feminism probably would never have become a movement because women would be restricted to domestic tasks because many occupations outside the home would be unfit for most of them.

            • Artleads says:

              “upper class white women benefited from having black women as slaves and as domestic servants.”

              Is this supposed to cheer up black women?

              “Without the succession of slavery and industrialization, feminism probably would never have become a movement because women would be restricted to domestic tasks because many occupations outside the home would be unfit for most of them.”

              I notice that you equate feminism with white women benefiting from black female servitude. “…feminism probably would never have become a movement because women would be restricted to domestic tasks ” But feminism exists among black and other women too.

              Feminism has suffered from the inevitable tendency of privileged white women to be mostly concerned with their kind. They have not been concerned with poor white women, much less poor black women. But that is a fool’s errand, for, come hard times, ALL women get pushed back into the kitchen and revert to rape fodder status. (In fact, women have never stopped being the latter.) Any hope for feminism depends on privileged white women taking a broader view. I know, the prospects don’t look good.

      • name says:

        Now white men should fix their mistake, and drag blacks back to Africa.

        • nope.avi says:

          Africans view African Americans as foreign settlers. There’s more to being African than having dark skin. When Africans meet in Africa, they often discuss their family–their lineage–their tribe–their ties to the place. African Americans have no ties to the place and don’t know or understand any of the customs.

          Most African Americans, since the end of the American Civil War, didn’t feel comfortable going back to Africa, because they would be strangers there.

          “It took African Americans freed slaves who emigrated to-Liberia, a century and more to become truly accepted as one of Liberia’s ethnic groups().This long period of struggle contributed to most Black Americans rejecting the Back-to-Africa option and opting instead for seeking equal rights in America.”( Dr. Washington Hyde, The Tortuous Route of Black American History, Ch. 3, 5.) Anywhere you go, people are people. Racism is a canard in any historical narrative.

          • Fast Eddy says:

            One of the first things liberated slaves from America did when they were shipped back to Africa… you got it… they enslaved the Africans…


            And let us not forget the poor oppressed j ews…. who used terror to obtain a homeland … then kicked the sh it out of the Palestinians…..

            Koombaya … Give Peace a Chance… are silly songs…. ridiculous

            • nope.avi says:

              It was okay for Zionist Jews to make a historical claim to land through Zionism
              but it was wrong, wrong, wrong, for the Germans to claim half of Europe through Lebensraum. It’s funny the people who believe these statements claim to be fighting against privilege and power, while they seek the very thing they claim to denounce.

            • Fast Eddy says:

              How can we sleep when our beds are burning….

              Let’s give it back…

              Ha hahahahahahahahahahaha


          • Artleads says:

            “Most African Americans, since the end of the American Civil War, didn’t feel comfortable going back to Africa, because they would be strangers there.”

            And yet, when scarcity kicks in, more numerous whites turn on them, as we are seeing. The one, indisputable benefit of repatriation is that American Africans won’t be picked on for their skin color in Africa. So, what should be the aim here?

            I know it’s an unfamiliar thought, but one of the “benefits” of slavery in the west is that blacks, who in Africa came from antagonistic tribes/nations, were forced into a common identity and a commonality of caste typing by the elite. It seems to me mistaken to think of western Africans as being all the same happy family along with continental Africans. Instead, it might work better to emphasize differentness along the lines of that common identity forged in the west. But does that change the fact that western Africans are as African as any other kind?

            • Fast Eddy says:

              Africans were complicit in selling other Africans to the slave traders…

              We are humans… this is the sort of thing we do

            • nope.avi says:

              “does that change the fact that western Africans are as African as any other kind”
              You don’t seem to understand facts. But then you seem to back-peddle with that” being intuitive ” nonsense when you are caught twisting the facts.
              . Evidence suggests that as back as over 200 years ago, African Americans were not resistant enough to local African diseases as Malaria nor were they socially accepted as Africans in Africa. CLEARLY, they weren’t AS AFRICAN AS AFRICANS WHO NEVER LEFT AFRICA.

              ” The one, indisputable benefit of repatriation is that American Africans won’t be picked on for their skin color in Africa.” They WERE picked on, when they went back to Africa. They were treated as foreigners. Do you have disability or something?

            • Artleads says:

              @ FE

              “Africans were complicit in selling other Africans to the slave traders…”

              Old news.

              We are humans… this is the sort of thing we do”

              Yes. And it’s the sort of thing we can STOP doing as well (and that many have refused to do, even at the cost of their lives).

              @ Nope

              You show your limitations in various ways. One (a very cheap one) is to hurl insults at people that try to straighten out your confused mind. Sorry, that was your last insulting post that will be answered.

            • it’s as well to recognise slaves for what they were—an energy resource.

              In every era, if you were rich enough, you bought muscle power to do your menial work. When they were no longer fit to work, they were cast aside, and died young anyway.

              Miners provided the basic energy resource of UK until 50 years ago, before them it was agricultural labourers.

              Rich landowners invested money to buy the muscle to dig shafts to extract the coal, then took a royalty on every ton mined. The only time they saw it was when another servant put it on their fires.

              Miners were paid a pittance, and the mine killed them, one way or another, but they bred lots of kids to replace themselves. Their choices were virtually nil.
              So who cared?
              very few.

              race has got nothing to do with it—it’s called opportunism.

              Whether you own a coalfield or a cane plantation, (or even a Roman city infrastructure) you needed muscle to work it

            • Artleads says:


              I love your big picture thinking. But those miners had feelings and resentments over their treatment, and waged their own struggles against it that were supported by forces higher up. Their cultural expectation, despite being detached from your big picture reality, was for more equal and compassionate treatment. It’s not the big picture, but it’s real, and has consequences. In that context, class, race and gender do matter.

              In my hierarchy of important constituencies, land would come first. I attribute much of the pickle we’re in to the consistent prioritizing of people over land. I know you discount what people have in their heads, and attribute human destiny purely to energy flow, but I do think prioritizing humans over land is a major problem.

              I wish I could do more to popularize your basic theories, since they are so helpful. But discounting people’s cultural expectations (or not seeking away to adjust or counter them) doesn’t help to reach the public.

              The End of More has a philosophical (cultural?) aspect too. Everything in our cultural trajectory has hit a wall. That’s part of a big picture that I’d like to see better understood.


            • lol–i know

              i’m the n’th generation of miners, so for me it was up close and personal. but i escaped the pit.

              that’s why i relate to it so deeply, my dad saw to it that he was the last miner in our family—and he was pit boss.—-it was a love hate relationship, as it is with all deep miners. Though when you live in a pit village, that’s the only employment

              resentment yes, but a weird connection to it that you find nowhere else. He never wanted to work anywhere else in spite of it being a crappy job—particularly when he started work at 14, though 100 years earlier he would have started at 6

      • african muscle power was a source of cheap energy—so we used it until a better energy source came along—then we used that.

        it’s a natural progression of energy use, that is ultimately self destructive

      • Yorchichan says:

        Enough of the self (white) hatred:

        The Truth About Slavery: Past, Present and Future

        • we conveniently ignore the truth:

          That is was (light skinned) africans who sold (dark skinned) africans to white slave traders

          • Yorchichan says:

            …and those brown (Arabic) Africans kept black and white slaves themselves and treated said slaves far more brutally than the small percentage of white slave owners in America ever did.

            • they took slaves from the coastal villages of UK and Ireland up to the 15th c

            • Artleads says:

              You’re talking total BS, like a kindergarten infant pointing fingers, saying, “he did it.” Learn something.

            • it’s on record

            • Artleads says:

              Norm, I’m certainly not disputing the factual content of what Yorchichan says. I’m simply tired of the puerile evasion implied. By learn something, I mean something logical, ethical, psychological, mature, worthy of respect. What somebody else does is no excuse for what you do. But that is a mere fraction of what is at stake.

          • name says:

            I think that even blacks understand, that whites are superior, because it’s so obvious (50 thousands years of separate evolution). But they can’t accept it.

            • nope.avi says:

              Where black people can compete on merit, they never, ever ask for affirmative action.

              “obvious (50 thousands years of separate evolution)” The differences are probably very small between races, but given the complexity of the human genome. small differences lead to divergent ways groups perform.Think of how many breeds of dogs there are. Same species but each breed is different. There is no better, no superior but there are different adaptations.

            • which ”race” screwed up the planet?

            • Fast Eddy says:

              This conversation is MORE onic.

              It always amuses me how whitey claims to be the smartest race…

              Anyone who states this is actually as stewwwpid as it gets.

              To start off — most people are f789(ing) stewpid…. I’d say 99%+++ …. I know plenty of bankers and lawyers and basically most of them are stewpid. Stewpid in that they cannot even understand that they live in a matrix….

              Now as for individuals — there are indeed some smart people out there — some are white… some are black… some are Asian….

              I am not interested in your colour — I am interested in the level of enlightenment and curiousity that you display.

              There are no colours on FW.

            • Fast Eddy says:

              When I read a comment like that… I assume the person behind it is themselves is a rather dim light…

              Because they have this need to claim there is this elite group – and that they are included because they are white …

              There is an elite group — but a white face is not a passport… and anyone who makes comments like the one above…

              Well…. the only club they are invited to join … is the local fitness centre…

            • doomphd says:

              superior at what? professional sports?

        • Fast Eddy says:

          No self hatred…. just observations

          In Canada whitey took the land from the natives… because they were weak…

          Too bad for them … they would take it back in a heart beat if they had the power…

          And if there were a referendum to decide if we should give it back…

          I would of course be voting no… I would in fact prefer to take more …. and to cut all the tax dollars that go to these people. F789 em. they lost we won… live with it

  27. Cliffhanger says:

    Trump is as dumb as they come. Now athletes are going to be taking a knee because of him and for free speech alongside with BLM. He just unknowingly created his own feedback loop!

  28. Cliffhanger says:

    Need any more proof that dotard trump is a bigot? In the last week he’s attacked three prominent African Americans; Jemele Hill of ESPN, Colin Kaepernick, and Steph Curry. Couple that with defending white supremacists and Neo-Nazis and pardoning fellow bigot Joe Arpaio.

    • “Bigotry” is an expected outcome of “not enough energy to go around”. We end up with more wage disparity, and with more people squeezed out of even finding a job. We can print money, but we can’t print energy. In fact, leaders that follow these beliefs are to be expected as well.

      The only solution I am aware of is a greater supply of cheap to extract energy products.

      We can criticize Trump, but we need to expect that if he leaves, we are likely to get someone else who is as bad or worse.

      • yup

        1 pence is our lowest denomination coin in the uk—your presidential coinage is about to be reduced to an equal level i think.

        i wrote in 2011 that “a Trump” was inevitable due to economic pressures—as did Chomsky, and others at the time, (including the Simpsons from well before that.)

        Trump is not the disease, he is the symptom. Getting rid of him won’t cure the problem.

        Pence cannot allow himself to be alone with a strange woman—beat that for a presidential hangup

    • Jesse James says:

      Cliff, Joe Arpaio might think you are a bigot.

  29. Artleads says:


    Thought you might be interested in this.

    D.C. Could Offer Cash for Walking and Biking to Work

    “This bill would be easy to implement because it builds on DC’s Commuter Benefits Law, which requires all employers with 20 or more employees to provide them with the option to use their own pre-tax money to pay for transit. The parking cash-out bill will use the systems employers already have to make to their payroll systems to administer pre-tax benefits under the Commuter Benefits Law. If an employee wants to opt for transit rather than a parking benefit, their benefit would just be switched from parking to transit in the system. If an employee wants to use their parking benefit to walk or bicycle, they would receive the value of the parking space as taxable income.”


  30. Cliffhanger says:

    Oakland A’s catcher Bruce Maxwell first MLB player to kneel during national anthem

    • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

      first, I’m a white guy, just to put that on record.

      second, I agree that all Americans have a protected right to free speech, and this expression falls under that umbrella.

      now, it is a fact that in the USA, over 90% of all murdered black persons are killed by another black person.

      so what exactly is he protesting?

      does he say?

      • Cliffhanger says:

        If you read the article he said that he did it because of Trump’s comments today. And if you don’t understand why BLM are protesting. I will give you some of the reasons.

        1. We have more laws per cap than any other country in the world

        2. We have more government officers per cap than any other country in the world

        3. We have more prisoners per cap than any other country in the world. Even more the the Socialist Soviet Union did under Stalin at any point.

        Any questions?

        • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:


          didn’t the BLM movement start because of a black person being killed by a white police officer?

          why doesn’t BLM ever address the issue of blacks killing blacks?

          why hasn’t Obama ever addressed this issue?

          is it because he knew his only option was failure?

          since blacks shoot each other over 90% of the time, why don’t black lives seem to matter that much to the black shooters?

          when a player kneels, is he really protesting the murder of so many of his fellow blacks by so many other fellow blacks?

          is this hypocrisy?


          it’s tragic when anyone is shot and killed.

          it’s also tragic that no black leader has stood up to demand that the black communities of America do something about their own murder rates.

          • Cliffhanger says:

            why doesn’t BLM ever address the issue of blacks killing blacks?

            Objection: Changing the subject and arguing a false equivalency. And for the record your honor (Gail) just a few months ago black leaders organized a “Don’t shoot anyone” weekend in Baltimore…

            • Tim Groves says:

              That’s a start. A bit like an anti-smoking campaign. If you can give up killing people for a weekend, it could be the first step in breaking the habit.

          • xabier says:

            It’s similar in Britain: somehow, the police are blamed for kids from (mostly) ethnic minorities stabbing one another in gang warfare. And for the gun crime.

            Or the schools.

            Or ‘society.’ (That must mean me, I suppose).

            Not the families, Never their useless, drugged-up, absentee parents. Nor the drug dealers.

            A few years ago, some poor innocent black kid had his head blown off, while waiting for a bus in the middle of the day, in a case of mistaken identity. Someone from a gang had just been buried in the cemetery nearby.

            But of course, the murderer had no personal responsibility for that deed, according to all these self-appointed ‘community leaders’. There were no riots, no,protests…..

            • Cliffhanger says:

              If the white authorities and many private citizens (Such as you xabier) treat and condemn others as second class citizens. Well then they have no choice if they want to feel good about themselves is to become an outlaw.

            • xabier says:


              When did I call them ‘2nd-class’? Your words, not mine.

              They are equal human beings, of course: but just as certainly they are very, very screwed up.

              Best solution is not to allow their disfunctional parents to reproduce – same solution for all races and colours. In fact, a friend of mine was saying just that about some black sheep cousins of hers, and they are white.

              People like you excuse crime, and shut your eyes to what is patently obvious.

              Wait until it hits you one day, and see how you feel about their ‘self- esteem’ efforts.

            • A Real Black Person says:

              It’s best to not engage with Cliffhanger. I’ve come to the conclusion that he’s a dyed in the wool Leftist: pro-Communism, pro- identity politics…and mindlessly “resisting” Trump with numerous posts of no substance, not-unlke many people on Twitter.

              This is the direction where liberals like Cliffhanger want race relations to go… in order to empower minorities you have to restrict the freedoms of the majority:

          • Artleads says:

            Do you see what you’re doing? You’re evading any responsibility at all for producing violent, twisted people. Of course, your inherited (and at least partially causal) violence and twistedness must not be examined. No, you must claim pristine innocence and purity. You are in the same state of mass denial so typically seen regarding impending collapse and runaway extinction. And it’s no more likely that you’ll be enlightened than that any other type of denier will.

        • Jesse James says:

          Agreed Cliff….the real problem is D.C. With all its draconian laws and the fact that our society is a prison planet. Let’s not talk about that and the corruption, but let’s get upset about players not respecting the national anthem. I personally feel,they should not take the knee, that it is “kinda of cheap”. They take their high pay….they should respect the anthem. I bet you don’t see many of these guys out lobbying for real political,change.

          • Fast Eddy says:

            Don’t ya just love how the NFL has been turned into a marketing tool for recruiting cannon fodder?

      • Fast Eddy says:

        Oh I dunno … perhaps this?

    • Cliffhanger says:

      Does this mean right wing bigots will boycott the NBA,NFL and MLB now? Well they still have the NHL I guess…LOL

  31. MG says:

    The story of coal (and accumulated energy in general)

    It is evident that WWI and WWII marked the end of the coal era. But the energy collapse of which region sparked them?

    The official history talks about the Austria-Hungary in general and its conflict with Serbia.

    “The trigger for the war was the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, heir to the throne of Austria-Hungary, by Yugoslav nationalist Gavrilo Princip in Sarajevo on 28 June 1914. This set off a diplomatic crisis when Austria-Hungary delivered an ultimatum to the Kingdom of Serbia,[11][12] and entangled international alliances formed over the previous decades were invoked. Within weeks, the major powers were at war and the conflict soon spread around the world.”
    Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_War_I

    In my opinion, the real spark for the war was caused by the collapse of the only coal mining region in Slovakia of that time that formed the industrial heartland of the Hungarian part of the Austria-Hungary. It was the population collapse that sparked it, marked by the end of the noble family that owned the corresponding mines:

    “Finally, the last famous castle owner from the Pálffy family, Count János Ferenc Pálffy (1829-1908), made a complex romantic reconstruction from 1888 to 1910 and created today’s beautiful imitation of French castles of the Loire valley. He not only had the castle built, but also was the architect and graphic designer. He utilized his fine artistic taste and love for collecting pieces of art. He was one of the greatest collectors of antiques, tapestries, drawings, paintings and sculptures of his time. After his death and long quarrels, his heirs sold many precious pieces of art from the castle and then, on 25 February 1939, sold the castle, the health spa, and the surrounding land to Ján Baťa (of the shoe firm Bata).”
    Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bojnice_Castle

    The count János Ferenc Pálffy was a bachelor, without his own descendants. The Pálffy family gained its power uniting with the famous Fugger family via marriage in the 16th century, of which Jakob Fugger from Augsburg is considered to be the founder of the modern capitalism (http://www.gospelherald.com/articles/56847/20150731/jakob-fugger-worlds-first-true-capitalist-helped-fundamentally-change-western-christianity.htm).

    The thorn crown of the Jesus Christ (as the crown of the last man without the descendants, the wooden crown of suffering that marks the end of the mankind without the external accumulated energy) decorates the top of one of the towers of the mentioned castle that completely rebuilt by the mentioned bachelor János Ferenc Pálffy:



    The story of robots started only a few kilometers from here, in another spa town of Trencianske Teplice:

    And it was also only a few kilometers from here, where the story of the modern Slovak nation began in the 19th century, creating its language by the Lutheran intellectual Ludovit Štúr, born in the nearby village of Uhrovec, and suffered the depths of the energy implosion era of WWII, headed by its president, the catholic priest Jozef Tiso, who was the parson and the dean in the nearby town of Banovce nad Bebravou.

    The story of the nation that suffered the demise of the coal. And one of the nations, that needed to continue with the nuclear energy, in order to survive…

    Connecting the dots, we create the real story of the population and energy.

    • This is another article about coal’s history, by Ugo Bardi. http://www.theoildrum.com/node/6224

      This is a bit of the story:

      “But coal had a problem: it was not easy to transport. Coal is heavy; it is unthinkable to cart it for long distances on roads. For this reason, the first railroads were developed in early 19th century expressly to transport coal. But rails were expensive, prone to failure, and the first steam engines were so inefficient that they would use up most of the coal transported unless the distance covered was really short. These early railroads could be used only to move coal from mines to river ports, where coal was loaded on sailing ships called “colliers.” Only using waterways it was possible to transport coal over long distances. Gradually, railroads and steam engines became more efficient, but wherever sea and canal transportation was available, it remained always the cheapest way of transporting coal.”

      • MG says:

        Thanks, I really wondered how Italy could become an industrial country, did not know all the details how it was dependent both on British and German coal. The article provides another true story of the coal (or fossil fuels) behind the scenes.

        • xabier says:

          Britain not only had the coal, but also excellent sea and river communications, extended with canals. It helped being a relatively flat and small country, too.

          • as i’ve pointed out elsewhere:

            a nation with no indigenous energy source must beg buy borrow or steal it from somewhere else or go under. Italy fits that perfectly.

            right now Italy is headed for the go under phase, having used up all the other options.

            The Italians make the most beautiful objects in the world, in any genre, but with insufficient energy, it becomes impossible to go on doing it.

            • MG says:

              It was the Italian electricity company Enel that partially privatised the state owned company Slovenské elektrárne, a.s., the company which owns and operates the nuclear power plants in Slovakia. It is no wonder that the desperate Italians provided the best offer for getting the stake in the nuclear sector…

            • MG says:

              The heavily indebted energy sector in Slovakia before the coming of the robots in the new car facotries was saved by the Italian capital. Now, Italians, are selling their stake: they have know-how and can, when possible, build a nucelar power plant in Italy. The specialty of the newest blocks of the power plant in Mochovce is that the Slovak engineers mastered the technology and are finishing the originally Russian based nuclear technology without the Russians…


            • MG says:

              As elsewhere in Europe, Italy is cutting back subsidies for renewable energy, notably wind and solar.

            • MG says:

              This is the whole quote: “Italy’s multinational utility Eneld is responsible for much of the country’s electricity production. Over the next decade, Enel planned to build 6400 MWe of net nuclear capacity in partnership with France’s EDF3.As elsewhere in Europe, Italy is cutting back subsidies for renewable energy, notably wind and solar. ”

              Source: http://www.world-nuclear.org/information-library/country-profiles/countries-g-n/italy.aspx

            • all pertinent points—but they deal with the here and now

              my comment about indigenous resources was meant to cover our potential future—25-50 years or so

            • MG says:

              Dear Norman, I understand the fact that the costs go up and up and, as some say, we will not need so much costly power generating capacity due to the fast ageing populations…

            • Sorry, the reality about completion of these 3-4th power block at Mochovce NPP (SK) to already existing units 1-2 at the site is a little bit different. Firstly, it’s the older generation VVER <.5GW type of system, known from the 1980s, what we are talking about here. Nowadays it's economic to only build 2-3x bigger reactors (Russia, China, EU with big problems). Also, the fuel to these VVERs can be reliably supplied (and also send to back to reprocessing) only by Russians.

              These "new" reactor vessels for Mochovce completion were also manufactured decades ago in Czechoslovakia and remained in deposit – storage, now even Czechs lost the capacity to build these (or upgrade) and are focusing "only on lesser" items within the nuclear industry. The electronics and safety is mostly western for Mochovce.

              Mind you, I don't put you down, it's obviously a major achievement for any country to finalize its NPP projects, despite the chain of imported key supplier chains and some level of domestic engineering input..

            • MG says:

              Dear Norman,

              and what? The project was and is being finished without the Russians, which was not quite usual. Until recently… Also the new nuclear reactors in Georgia may be finished without the support of the bankrupted original company. If the companies/states fail, there is a need for some improvisation:


            • the ”indigenous energy” concept is a difficult one to put over

              but it means more than just electricity—and nuclear power stations produce only electricity, and are a short term energy producing system that cannot continue to function outside a fossil fueled industrial system/infrastructure.

              italy and other nations might continue to produce electricity, but without the resources to put that electricity to use—it is use-less

              so whatever ”power” is produced it is necessary to buy in the oil based products that allow society to function
              it is not possible to ”improvise” them.
              they are derivatives of hydrocarbons and there are no substitutes on any meaningful scale

            • Again, not insignificant accomplishment. But the bottom line is as follows:

              Mochovce NPP as it stands now near completion of all 4units is an odd site with fleet of 30+ yrs old reactor vessels from Russian license (conceptually even of older design mid 1970s) at ~1/3 power output in comparison to real new builds above 1GWe per unit, despite that additional fact you mentioned being transplanted with latest gen of control and safety electronics, efficient peripheries in the electric generation and heat-steam management.. The delays and lower power output won’t likely make stellar econ numbers in the end.

              While the world is several generation ahead (Russia; China, S.Korea) and beyond, I will not repeat my previous detailed posts now on existing industry in spent fuel recycling.

            • MG says:

              Dear worldofhanumanotg.

              when the states/companies fail, there are delays in completion of the projects. You can not simply discard such a big project and start with the newest technology, but you must finish it using upgrades.

              VVER is a robust and safe design. When needed and still possible, there may be other fuel suppliers and processing facilities. Both the nuclear power plants and the processing facilities have their payback lifetime… You can not switch at will between them.

            • xabier says:

              Italians taught civilisation to the whole of Europe, it’s an astonishing history.

              I imagine they have ruined their agricultural land with chemicals and over-exploitation like everyone else post WW2.

              Much of Europe’s vegetables and fruit are grown in Sicily, where they use slave migrant labour, facilitated by EU freedom of movement rules.

          • the uk had three things going for it in the 18th c

            1 masses of coal

            2 masses of iron ore

            3 a political system that didnt inhibit innovation

            hence we were the first to smelt iron using coal, and that kickstarted the industrial revolution, which allowed steam engines, iron ships and cannon.

            without those basic factors, a modern infrastructure is impossible.

            but starting first, we consumed our resources first—we are now on the downslide to obvlion….exactly when is anybodys guess, but it cant be far off

            • xabier says:

              Not just consumption of resources, but maltreatment: the wrecking of agricultural land, abuse of waterways, etc, in Britain since 1945 is a sorry tale.

            • smite says:

              And for those things we are eternally grateful!
              What would life have been like without the brits booting up the IC?

        • That’s the mistake, people usually do looking at Italy in it’s current borders, which is a joke of 20th century politics. It was always mostly only about the “North”, which was usually part of major European and or Global developments in the first wave. To some extent this vector reached a bit south to the upper central parts around former Papal state (Rome), the rest of “Italy” – in lower central – south proper and Sicily, were more or less peasant internal colonies and harbor – fortification facilities.

  32. dolph says:

    I notice that somebody asked where I am these days. Let me say, reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.
    I’m moving on with life. Everything that has been said has been said. I have no intention of fighting to get my comments published, and engaging in an endless tit for tat with fast eddy and cliffhanger, who insist that tomorrow everything will collapse, and I keep reminding them that everything hasn’t collapsed.

    • Tim Groves says:

      Nice to hear from you Dolph!

      We live in a finite world, so definitely tomorrow everything WILL collapse, but what we have to realize is that tomorrow could be a long time yet.


    • psile says:

      This is true, collapse hasn’t happened yet. And for that, we are truly grateful. But when collapse comes, it will come like the whirlwind. That’s how collapses happen. Take Puerto Rico for example. Declared bankrupt in May, then clobbered by SS Irma, and finally, totally obliterated by Sh#t Storm Maria. All in the space of 6 months. For most of the inhabitants of that place, the end of line has now arrived.

    • jazIntico says:

      “Let me say, reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.”

      And how about your UNdeath? 😉 Here’s a raunchier song for you.


      Now I’ll close your coffin lid for you. Sweet dreams.

    • Cliffhanger says:

      Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face -Mike Tyson

      • Fast Eddy says:

        This has gone on so long I have almost convinced myself that QE is a perpetual economic motion machine!

  33. Cliffhanger says:

    This information on OFW is available for anyone that cares to look, including the news media. No one looks.

    • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

      the MSM is essentially employed and funded by big business (and also is big business).

      they must keep up all appearances of BAU.

      to them, IC is just one big business.

      it must continue.


      • adonis says:

        the financial system ended in 2008 it is now in a coma has been ever since QE was brought in so when you say it must continue shows that you just don’t get it

        • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

          ended 9 years ago?

          is that hyperbole or just gross exaggeration?

          if you haven’t noticed, it’s still BAU (tonight, baby! though maybe not in Puerto Rico).

          the old normal system ended in 2008/2009 but BAU continues under this new normal.

          to QE or not to QE, that is the question.

    • adonis says:

      no one looks and they never will as this subject has not got a happy ending

  34. adonis says:

    growth is no longer possible the powers that be are aware of this that is why they have a plan , plan B . the plan has been in existence for many decades it is in the final year of implementation as they know that they tried everything to avoid going to plan B. a lot of the doomers believe that their is no plan B that the powers that be are ignorant of the situation . i disagree i believe in secret societies and that these secret societies have had secret meetings for many decades discussing the real problem of Diminishing Returns and what solutions they could implement to make the transition to a plan B world more easier unfortunately the solutions have failed and a transition to a plan B world will be messy prepare for big changes or even death as we plunge into the New World Order of Plan B

    • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

      plan B is no secret.

      it’s been operational since 2008/2009.

      austerity for the masses, and continued wealth for TPTB.

      but, as has been said…

      BAU tonight, baby!

    • i1 says:

      Yeah, well plan Z is to take down any country that represents a threat to the Anglo-Zio-American banking cartel, and it appears to me to have been a huge success.

  35. Cliffhanger says:

    A review of physical supply and EROI of fossil fuels in China (Wang, 2017)


  36. Cliffhanger says:

    In studies conducted at the School of Psychology at the University of New South Wales, researchers discovered that negative people communicate better, think more clearly, make fewer mistakes, are less gullible, and are better at decision-making. The reason? Negative people have enhanced ‘information-processing strategies’, which means they use the critical part of their brain more successfully than cheerful people.


    • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:


      we Doomers “… have enhanced ‘information-processing strategies…”

      that’s why Doomers are Doomers and “others” just don’t get it.

      BAU tonight, baby!


  37. Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

    how high will oil go?


    and Yogi said predictions are hard, especially about the future.

    BAU tonight, baby!


  38. Artleads says:

    Great read! Thanks.

    “A socially positive use of envy—now, that would be a technology almost as useful as fire. ”

    Easy: Teach envy of doing with less.

  39. A Real Black Person says:


    Gail has mentioned the need for productivity to keep increasing in order to keep industrial society going.*There is a massive effort to develop artificial intelligence as a means to keep increasing productivity. How long do people here think it will be before we see whether these efforts at large scale automation that is often referred to as artificial intelligence are successful?

    If the efforts at large scale automation are successful, how will that affect BAU?

    * The need for increasing productivity might be necessary for non-capitalist industrial economies. The Soviet Union’s Five Year Plans seem no different aside from the use of state-sponsered coercion from initiatives by businesses to increase productivity.

    • theblondbeast says:

      I think it is unlikely to ever happen, and if it does, it will eventually destroy all value. Productivity gains are short lived because they eventually destroy the value of labor through real wage destruction.

    • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

      AI is just a fancy name for more advanced computing.

      Computing is a minor factor in productivity.

      The main driver of productivity for a few centuries has been the net energy derived from fossil fuels.

      18th/19th century coal was more energy dense than wood.

      19th/20th century oil was more energy dense than coal.

      now the remaining FF reserves provide less net energy.

      for AI to be productive, it needs to guide FF powered machinery.

      AI is in effect “powerless” to stop the declining net energy of IC.

      • Ed says:

        Humans need long slow education, housing, and time off AI needs none of these it is cheaper, it uses less energy.

        • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

          does AI heat your home in the winter and cool it in the summer?

          does AI grow food and transport it to the markets you shop at?

          does AI power the vehicle that gets you to those markets?

          does AI power the vehicle that easily carries that food home with you?

          does AI produce the energy that is converted to the electricity that you use?

          did AI create any of the products you own that use this electricity?

          is AI necessary at all for the continuation of IC and BAU?

          • A Real Black Person says:

            Productivity growth seems to be required for the continuation of IC and BAU . The consensus from the elite is productivity growth is not going to come from humans workers working harder anymore. A lot of hope is being placed on automation to drive productivity growth.

            • Davidin100millionbilliontrillionzillionyears says:

              automation is entirely dependent on FF.

              as the net energy of FF continues to decrease, the gains from automation will decrease.

              it’s diminishing returns, and it’s unstoppable.

              expect less complexity, not more.

              automation = complexity.

    • Slow Paul says:

      AI is a gimmick, a distraction just like “disruptive technology”. And we have had automation for decades now, nothing new here, all the big factories have implemented it.

  40. J. H. Wyoming says:


    ‘Tens of thousands being evacuated as dam fails, revealing scope of Puerto Rico’s dire situation’

    The title of the linked article states quite clearly “dam fails”, right? Well, then of course once you read the actual article it has not failed, but does have 1 crack. Sure, now it could over time fail, but it hasn’t actually failed. Seems like articles that lie about their content should be fined. Start a fining council or some kind of regulatory body in regards to lier headlines. In this case it would be a $10,000 fine. Not too exhorbitant but certainly would act as a deterant to blatant lying.

    • Cliffhanger says:

      .Try reading the Chicago Sun Times instead.

    • A Real Black Person says:

      This would never happen since many people in contemporary journalists see themselves as political activists. They are not hired to present accurate information anymore, they are paid to craft narratives that shape public opinion.

  41. The reason the biggest companies dominate stock market gains is because of this.


    And the bubble will continue indefinitely.


    People have forgotten than only three families, the Rockefeller, the Gulbenkian (who controlled all of middle east’s oil) and the Nobel (brothers of the prize founder, These brothers owned the Baku oil and way, way richer than their bachelor explosive maker) controlled all of the world’s oil 100 years ago.

    These FAANG companies are like them, except their wealth is unlikely to decrease.


    That is the reality.

  42. Fast Eddy said when the crap hits the pan the prisoners will be released.

    I disagree.

    In 1950, when North Koreans attacked the South, there were no cars or fuel to transport thousands of prisoners throughout South Korea. Many of them were communists imprisoned for their activities.

    The South Korean prison officials simply shot, bayonet or buried the prisoners.


    Of course, since the massacre was done by the winners of the struggle, no one was punished.

    That’s how it goes. The local retired police, military, and other veterans will make sure no prisoner gets out of the pen alive.

    • Fast Eddy says:

      You’ve got me mixed up …. I said they will not be released. They will be locked in their cells and left to starve.

      But that does not matter — there are millions of vicious animals who are kept in check by the police — just waiting to run riot….

  43. Cliffhanger says:

    The Case Against Civilization – The New Yorker

    • Kurt says:

      It’s a wonderful life!

      The bushmen’s diet and relaxed lifestyle have prevented most of the stress-related diseases of the western world. Bushmen health, in general, is not good though: 50% of children die before the age of 15; 20% die within their first year (mostly of gastrointestinal infections). Average life expectancy is about 45-50 years; respiratory infections and malaria are the major reasons for death in adults. Only 10% become older than 60 years.

      • J. H. Wyoming says:

        Those Bushmen stats are probably indicative of what people use to experience living in the wild. In some ways it’s less stressful, but in other ways much more physically demanding. How long does a car last outside in the elements vs. in a garage? How long does a baseball card last on a bike’s spokes vs. in a graded plastic case in a safe? I have a 20 year old truck I keep in our garage and it’s paint job still looks new. The dashboard isn’t cracked, etc.

      • Artleads says:

        Wouldn’t the above keep population in check? Anyway, the northern Bushmen prefer the life they’ve got to the penned up life in the south. And a way of life that’s lasted 150K years can’t be all bad.

  44. Cliffhanger says:

    Wasn’t that planet Nibiru or Planet X suppose to collide with the earth today ? I just had a look outside and still can’t see it ,might be caught in traffic there’s a lot of rocks around the mars area

    • Kurt says:

      Elon diverted it. What a guy!

    • J. H. Wyoming says:

      That darn Nibiru is really ticking me off big time! I mean, I’m really tired of it hiding behind Jupiter and peaking around it to see if the coast is clear to launch it’s descent on to the Earth. It doesn’t show itself long enough for astronomers to get a good look at it, then suddenly it darts over and hides behind Uranus. That’s not cool.

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