The world’s weird self-organizing economy

Why is it so difficult to make accurate long-term economic forecasts for the world economy? There are many separate countries involved, each with a self-organizing economy made up of businesses, consumers, governments, and laws. These individual economies together create a single world economy, which again is self-organizing.

Self-organizing economies don’t work in a convenient linear pattern–in other words, in a way that makes it possible to make valid straight line predictions from the past. Instead, they work in ways that don’t match up well with standard projection techniques.

How do we forecast what lies ahead? Today, some economists believe that the economy of the United States is in danger of overheating. Others believe that Italy and the United Kingdom are facing dire problems, and that these problems could adversely affect the world economy. The world economy should be our highest concern because each country is dependent on a combination of imported and exported goods. The forecasting question becomes, “How will divergent economic results affect the world’s economy?”

I am not an economist; I am a retired actuary. I have spent years making forecasts within the insurance industry. These forecasts were financial in nature, so I have had hands-on experience with how various parts of the financial system work. I was one of the people who correctly forecast the Great Recession. I also wrote the frequently cited academic article, Oil Supply Limits and the Continuing Financial Crisis, which points out the connection between the Great Recession and oil limits.

Today’s indications seem to suggest that an even more major recession than the Great Recession may strike in the not too distant future. Why should this be the case? Am I imagining problems where none exist?

The next ten sections provide an introduction to how the world’s self-organizing economy seems to operate.

[1] The economy is one of many self-organized systems that grow. All are governed by the laws of physics. All use energy in their operation.

There are many other self-organizing systems that grow. One such system is the sun. Some forecasts indicate that it will keep expanding in size and brightness for about the next five billion years. Eventually, it is expected to collapse under its own weight.

Hurricanes are a type of self-organizing system that grows. Hurricanes grow over warm ocean waters. If they travel over land for a short time, they can sometimes shrink back a bit and grow again once they have an adequate source of heat-energy from warm water. Eventually, they collapse.

Plants and animals also represent self-organizing systems that grow. Some plants grow throughout their lifetimes; others stabilize in size after reaching maturity. Animals continue to require food (a form of energy) even after they stabilize at their mature size.

We can’t use the typical patterns of these other growing self-organized systems to conclude much about the future path of the world’s economic growth because individual patterns are quite different. However, we notice that cutting off the energy supply used by any of these systems (for example, moving a hurricane permanently over land or starving a human) will lead to the demise of that system.

We also know that lack of food is not the only reason why humans die. Based on this observation, it is a reasonable conclusion that having enough energy available is not a sufficient condition to guarantee that the world economy will continue to operate as in the past. For example, a blocked shipping channel, such as at the Strait of Hormuz, could pose a significant problem for the world economy. This would be analogous to a blocked artery in a human.

[2] The use of energy products is hidden deeply within the economy. As a result, many people overlook their significance. They are also difficult for researchers to measure. 

It is easy to see that gasoline provides the energy supply needed for our cars, and that electricity provides the power needed to clean our clothes. What is missing? The answer seems to be, “Everything that makes humans different from wild animals is something that was made possible by the use of supplemental energy in addition to the energy from food.”

All goods and services require the use of energy. While some of this energy use is easy to see, other portions are well hidden. Energy used in manufacturing and transport is most visible; energy used in services tends to be hidden.

Governments are major users of energy, both for their own programs and for directing energy use to others. Retirees get the benefit of goods and services made with energy products through pension checks issued by governments; researchers get the benefit of goods and services made with energy products through research grants they receive. Wars require energy.

Medical treatments are possible because of the availability of medicines and equipment made with energy products. Schools and books, as well as free time to study in schools (rather than working in the field), are possible because of energy consumption. Jobs of all kinds require the use of energy.

One thing we don’t often consider is that if energy supplies are growing sufficiently, they permit an expanding population. In fact, expanding population seems to be the single largest use of growth in energy consumption (Figure 1). Growing energy consumption also seems to be associated with prosperity.

Figure 1. World energy consumption growth for ten-year periods (ended at dates shown) divided between population growth (based on Angus Maddison estimates) and total energy consumption growth, based on the author’s review of BP Statistical Review of World Energy 2011 data and estimates from Energy Transitions: History, Requirements and Prospects by Vaclav Smil.

[3] Prices of energy services need to be low relative to overall costs of the economy. Falling energy costs relative to overall GDP tend to encourage economic growth.

Most economists expect energy prices to represent a large share of GDP costs, if energy is truly important. The statement above says the opposite. There are at least two reasons why low energy prices, and energy prices that are truly falling when inflation and productivity changes are considered, are helpful.

First, tools (broadly defined) used to leverage the labor of human workers often require considerable energy to manufacture and operate. Examples of such tools include computers, machines used in manufacturing, vehicles, and roads for these vehicles to drive on. The lower the cost to purchase and operate these tools, relative to the benefit of the tools, the more likely employers are to purchase them. If energy costs tend to fall over time, it becomes progressively easier to add more tools to leverage the labor of employees. Thus, employees become increasingly productive over time, raising the economy’s output of goods and services. For a similar reason, rising energy costs, if not offset by efficiency gains, present a barrier to economic growth.

Second, if the cost of energy production is low, it is easy to tax energy producers and thereby capture some of the benefit of their energy for the rest of the economy. If there is truly a “net energy” benefit to the economy, this is one way it gets transferred to the rest of the economy.

[4] There is indeed an energy problem, but it is not quite the same one that Peak Oilers have been concerned about.

The energy problem that Peak Oilers write about is the possibility that as easy-to-extract oil supplies deplete, oil production will reach a peak in production and begin to decline. Once decline sets in, they expect that oil prices will rise, partly because of the higher cost of production and partly because of scarcity. With these higher prices, they expect that producers will be able to extract at least a portion of the remaining oil resources. They also expect that higher prices will allow portions of the remaining natural gas and coal resources to be extracted. With higher prices, expanded use of renewable energy is expected to become feasible. All of these energy sources are expected to keep the economy operating at some level.

There are several problems with this story. First, it tends to encourage people to look for high oil prices as a sign of an oil shortage. This is not the correct indication to look for. Prior to 1970, oil prices averaged less than $20 per barrel. Comparing pre-1970 prices to today’s oil prices, current prices are already very high, at $75 per barrel. The idea that oil prices can keep rising indefinitely assumes that there is no affordability limit. Furthermore, a loss of energy consumption can be expected to reduce demand (because of its impact on jobs, productivity, and wages) at the same time that it reduces supply. If both supply and demand are affected, we don’t know which way prices will move.

Second, my analysis suggests that part of the story is that total energy consumption is very important, including oil, coal, natural gas, nuclear, and various forms of electricity. All of the attention given to oil has drawn attention away from the economy’s need for a range of energy types to keep devices of all types operating. Deciding to reduce coal usage because of pollution issues, or deciding to shut down nuclear because it is aging, has an equally adverse impact on the economy as reducing oil supply, unless the shortfall can be made up with other energy products of precisely the type needed by current devices.

Third, my analysis suggests that energy consumption per capita needs to rise for the economy to function in the way that we expect it to function. If world energy consumption per capita is too flat, we can expect to see many of the symptoms that the world has been experiencing recently: more radical leaders, less cooperation among leaders, slowing economic growth and increasing debt problems. In fact, wars are possible, as are collapses of governments (as with the Soviet Union central government in 1991). The current situation seems to be more parallel to the 1920 to 1940 flat period than it does to the 1980 to 2000 flat period.

Finally, with low energy prices rather than high quite possibly being much of the problem, there is a significant chance that oil and other production will decline because producers do not make enough profit for reinvestment and because oil exporting countries cannot collect enough taxes to fund the many subsidies that citizens expect. This makes for a steeper energy decline than forecast by Peak Oilers; it also reduces the possibility that high-priced renewables will be helpful.

[5] Part of the world’s energy problem is a distribution problem; the world becomes divided into haves and have-nots in many ways. It is this distribution problem that tends to push the world economy toward collapse. 

There are many parts to this distribution problem. One is the distribution of goods and services (created using energy) by country. Over time, this tends to change, especially as commodity prices change. Oil exporters are favored when oil prices are high; oil importers are favored when oil prices are low. The relative values of currencies can change quickly, as commodity prices change.

Another part of this distribution problem is growing wage and wealth disparity, as more technology is added. If there is too much wage disparity, low-paid workers often cannot afford adequate food, homes, and transportation for their families. Their lack of demand for goods made with energy products (because of their low wages) tends to work through the system as low commodity prices. This happens because (a) there are so many of these workers and (b) these workers tend to purchase a disproportionate share of goods and services that are highly energy-dependent.

[6] Debt-like promises play a major role in making the economy operate.

Taking out a loan allows an individual or business to purchase goods without saving for the purchase in advance. To some extent, taking out a loan moves up the timing of purchases. At times, it even permits purchases that otherwise would not be possible. For example, if a young person tries to decide between (a) working at a low wage until he has saved up enough to afford to go to college and (b) taking out a loan and going to school now, so his wages would be higher in future years, his optimal choice will often be scenario (b). The time would likely never come when the low-paid individual could save up enough wages to afford to go to college. If the young person strongly desires high wages, his optimal strategy would be to take the loan and hope that his future wages will be high enough to repay it.

If the goal of the economy is to produce an ever-increasing amount of goods and services, growing debt can very much help this growth. This happens because with more debt, more individuals and businesses can afford* to buy the goods and services that they want now. In a sense, debt acts like a promise of the future energy needed to make future goods and services with which the loan can be repaid. Thus, adding debt acts somewhat like adding energy to the economy.

Because of the way debt works, the economy behaves much like a bicycle, with growing debt pulling the system forward. If the economy is growing too slowly, the tendency is to add more debt. This solution works if a rapidly growing supply of cheap-to-produce energy is available; the additional debt can be used to create a growing supply of affordable goods and services. If energy costs are high, the goods and services produced tend to be unaffordable.

Figure 2. The author’s view of the analogy of a speeding upright bicycle and a speeding economy.

A bicycle needs to operate at a fast enough speed (about 7.5 feet per second), or it will fall over. Similarly, the world economy needs to grow fast enough, or it will not be able to meet its obligations, including repayment of debt with interest. If the economy grows too slowly, debt defaults are likely to grow, pulling the economy down.

[7] It looks like it should be possible to work around energy problems with improved technology, but experience suggests that this approach represents only a temporary “fix.”

There are two issues that make improved technology less of a solution than it appears to be. The first is diminishing returns. For example, if a business faces a choice between (a) paying a worker to perform a process and (b) adding a machine that can perform the same process, the business will tend to make the changes that seem to provide the largest cost savings first. At some point, as more technology is added, capital costs can be expected to become excessive relative to the human labor that might be saved. The issue of the diminishing returns to added complexity (which includes growing technology) was pointed out by Joseph Tainter in The Collapse of Complex Societies.

The second reason why added technology tends to be only a temporary solution is because it tends to lead to wage disparity. Wage disparity has a tendency to grow because of the greater specialization and larger organizations needed to coordinate the ever-larger projects. The reduced purchasing power of those at the bottom of the hierarchy can eventually bring an economy down because it can lead to commodity prices that are below the level needed to maintain the extraction of fossil fuels. Fossil fuels are required to maintain today’s economy.

[8] Renewable energy has been vastly oversold as a solution. What is needed is an ever-increasing quantity of inexpensive energy in forms that match the energy needs of current devices. 

The wind and solar story is far different from the story presented in the press. Essentially, wind and solar are extensions of today’s fossil fuel system. The evidence that they are truly beneficial to the economy is shaky at best. We know that if energy sources are truly transferring significant “net energy” to the system, they generally can afford to pay high taxes. The fact that wind and solar require subsidies raises questions regarding whether standard calculations are providing accurate guidance. The press rarely mentions the high tax revenue that high oil prices make possible, worldwide. Tax revenues largely support many oil exporting countries.

Furthermore, the share of the world’s energy supply that wind and solar provide is very low: 1.9% and 0.7%, respectively. They are shown in the almost invisible blue and orange lines at the very top of Figure 3. Fossil fuels contributed 85% of total energy supply in 2017.

Figure 3. World energy consumption divided between fossil fuels and non-fossil fuel energy sources, based on data from BP Statistical Review of World Energy 2018.

[9] The world economy becomes very fragile as energy limits approach.

Energy limits seem to be affordable energy limits. Oil prices need to be high enough for exporting countries to obtain adequate tax revenue. In addition, oil producers need prices that are high enough so that they can make the necessary reinvestment, as fields deplete. At the same time, energy prices need to be low enough for consumers to afford goods and services made with energy products.

Much of developed world’s infrastructure was built when oil prices were less than $20 per barrel, in inflation-adjusted terms. A rising price of oil will lead to a higher cost of replacing roads and pipelines. If these were built using $20 per barrel oil, even a current price of $40 per barrel would represent a significant cost increase. The world has experienced high oil prices for sufficiently long that we have collectively forgotten how low oil prices were between 1900 and 1970.

Most people know that the earth holds a huge quantity of energy resources. The problem is extracting these resources in a way that is both affordable to consumers and sufficiently high-priced for producers. Falling long-term interest rates between 1981 and 2002 allowed the world economy to tolerate somewhat higher oil and other energy prices than it otherwise could because these falling interest rates permitted ever-lower monthly payments for a given loan amount. For example, if interest rates on a $300,000 mortgage would fall from 5% to 4% on a 25-year mortgage, monthly payments would decrease from $1,753 to $1,584. The lower interest rates would allow more people to buy homes with a given size of mortgage. Indirectly, the lower mortgage rates would permit additional new homes to be built and would allow more inflation in home prices. These benefits would at least partially offset the adverse impact of high energy prices.

Since the natural decline in long term interest rates stopped in 2002, the world economy has become increasingly fragile; the Great Recession took place in 2007-2009, when oil prices spiked and long-term interest rates were already low by historical standards. It was only when the United States’ program of quantitative easing (QE) was put in place that long-term interest rates could fall to even lower levels, helping the economy hide the problem of high energy prices a little longer.

The artificially low interest rates made possible by QE have problems of their own. They tend to inflate asset prices, including both real estate prices and stock market prices. Thus, they tend to create bubbles, which are prone to collapse if interest rates rise. Artificially low interest rates also tend to encourage investment in schemes with very low profit potential. Artificially low interest rates also encourage cross-border investments to try to take advantage of interest rate differences. If interest rate relativities change, the money that quickly would enter a country can almost as quickly leave the country, causing major fluctuations in currency relativities.

Regulators do not understand the role that physics plays in making the economy operate as it does. They assume that they, alone, have the power to make the economy behave as it does. They do not understand how important falling interest rates are in creating growing demand for goods and services. The economy, since 1981, has spent most of its time with falling interest rates; the most recent part of this decline in long-term interest rates has been made possible by QE. These falling interest rates have played a major role in disguising the world’s long-term problem of rising energy costs. These rising energy costs are taking place primarily because the cheapest-to-extract resources were produced first; the resources that are left have higher costs associated with them, for a variety of reasons, such as being farther away from the user, deeper, or needing more advanced extraction techniques. These issues have not been sufficiently offset by improved technology to keep extraction costs low.

US regulators now want to raise interest rates by raising short term interest rates and by selling QE securities. They don’t understand that they are playing with fire. If they can raise interest rates now, they will have the flexibility to lower them later if the economy should later slow excessively. They think that the higher rates will give them more control over the economy. They don’t understand how much of the world’s economy may really be a bubble, created by the decline in interest rates since 1981.

[10] The adverse economic outcome we should be concerned about is collapse, as encountered by prior civilizations when their economies hit limits. 

The stories in the press have been so focused on oil “running out” and finding alternatives to oil that few have stopped to ask whether this is really the correct story. Instead of creating a new story, it might have been better to look more closely at history. Based on the historical record, collapse seems to have been associated with situations where populations have outgrown their resource bases. In other words, collapse can be considered an energy consumption per capita problem. The oil problem (and other fuel problems) we are facing today can be viewed as an energy consumption per capita problem, as well.

We know from research that has been done by Peter Turchin, Joseph Tainter, and others how collapse has played out in the past. The situation is different this time, however, because the world economy is very interconnected. Oil consumption depends on electricity consumption, and vice versa. Our financial system is also extraordinarily important. For these reasons, a collapse may occur more quickly than in the past.

Differences Between My View and the Standard View

One of the big differences between the way I see the economy and the standard view of the economy is the answer to the question of “Who is in charge?” The standard view is that politicians and economists are in charge. They have all of the answers. The dire collapse outcomes that afflicted early civilizations could not possibly affect us. We are too smart. We know how to adjust interest rates correctly. We can even make QE available to lower long-term interest rates. We can also add more technology and other complexity than has ever been added in the past.

The answer I see to the question, “Who is in charge?” is, “The laws of physics are in charge.” Politicians play a fairly minor role in directing the fate of economies. If there is not enough energy available of the type needed (inexpensive and matching the current infrastructure), the economy may very well collapse. It is nature and the laws of physics that call most of the shots.

Another big difference between my view and the standard view is the observation that a decrease in oil supply (or total energy supply) affects both the supply and demand of energy. Because both supply and demand are affected, we don’t know which direction oil and other energy prices will move. They may move erratically, as interest rates are adjusted by regulators. A more complex model is needed.

Climate change becomes less of an issue in my view of the future, for several reasons. First, humans don’t really have very much control over the direction of the economy, so talking about anthropogenic climate change doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. The laws of physics that allowed human population to rise are also allowing climate change to happen. Second, we seem to be limited in our ability to use renewables to fix the situation. Furthermore, the possibility of collapse in the near future makes the various scenarios that hypothesize the use of large amounts of fossil fuels over many years in the future seem very unrealistic. Perhaps efforts to fix climate change should be focused in new directions, such as planting trees.

Help from Others

The subject matter of this post requires the knowledge of information from a wide range of academic areas. I could not have figured out all of this information on my own. I have been fortunate to have been able to learn from of a wide range of experts. Quite a number of academic groups have seen my articles, and invited me to speak at their conferences. In particular, I have had a long-term involvement with the BioPhysical Economics organization and have spoken at many of their conferences. I have learned much from Dr. Charles Hall, although at times I don’t 100% agree with him.

I have also learned from the many commenters on They form a self-organizing system of people from a wide range of backgrounds. Earlier, my involvement at as “Gail the Actuary” allowed me to get acquainted with a range of researchers, looking at different aspect of the energy problem.

In future posts, I intend to expand further on the ideas presented in this post.

*Here I am using the term afford loosely. What borrowers can actually afford is the current required monthly payments.

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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2,524 Responses to The world’s weird self-organizing economy

  1. Fast Eddy says:

    Brits are living beyond their means like never before…

    In 2017, each household spent or invested about 900 pounds ($1,187) more than they received on average – 25 billion pounds in total, according to an ONS article published this week. Britons were previously net borrowers in 1988, the height of a credit-fueled economic boom generated by then Chancellor of the Exchequer Nigel Lawson. But even then the shortfall was just 300 million pounds.

    What cannot continue… will stop? But when?

  2. Baby Doomer says:

    The British Army is reportedly on standby to deliver food, medicines, and fuel in case of a no-deal Brexit

  3. Artleads says:

    It’s taken for granted in western society that slums are expendable, of no intrinsic value. The same kind of thinking puts hunter gatherers at the bottomj of some sort of hierarchy of human states. Then we turn around and say there is no hope for human society. See?, we the zenith of human ascendency have made a mess of things, so clearly that was human destiny all along. Of course it couldn’t be that hunter gatherers, who have lived through all of human history, could be the smartest and most adaptive among us.

    • Fast Eddy says:


    • Artleads says:

      For one thing, it’s the poorest places with the most natural space that still have the capacity to grow. i suppose that since they start from such a low economic base but rich biosphere, it takes next to nothing to increase per capita energy consumption, while they have the kind of biosphere to supply and/or absorb the growth. But it makes a difference whether you think the base culture is valuable in itself, or the opposite. if you don’t love it, all you can do is destroy it. You can’t make it grow.

    • Except they are dying at mass as their lands are encroached by loggers and other developers. The last of them will die within 30 years.

      The last bastion of primitive humans, the Sentinel Island in the east coast of India, will probably be reserved for some Indian politicians.

      • Fast Eddy says:

        There are still some tribes in places like Irian Jaya/Papua… the Amazon… and parts of Africa… who are living unplugged.

        It would be good if BAU could continue a little longer so we could get them plugged in enough so that they could not survive the Apocalypse…. (if we make believe the spent fuel ponds do not exist – but fortunately they do — so this is a moot comment)

      • Artleads says:

        Sure. If we continue to regard and treat “pre civilized” people the way we do (mistakenly thinking that is the price of growth), they will die off, and so will we.

  4. Fast Eddy says:

    I am learning so much from the book 1493 … and I would like to share this tidbit of info with the DPs on FW….

    Did you know … that initially indentured servants were used in the Americas…. however even though it was more costly to acquire African slave labour, the transition was made because west Africans were mostly immune to malaria…

    Malaria was a HUGE problem — in many instances it killed up to 80% of whites…. on slaving ships it often killed most of the crew ….

    And Malaria is not a problem only in tropics… as mentioned earlier it was endemic in many parts of the UK….

    And check this out:

    Malaria is an infamous killer throughout much of our world’s tropical areas; it kills or debilitates millions each year, and its economic impact is devastating. But most Canadians might have difficulty imagining malaria outbreaks in Canada. But, in the 1800s, particularly along the Rideau and Cataraqui Rivers, malaria was rampant.

    DP Tip of the Day from Fast Eddy (I am here to help – and unlike Martenson – no pay wall!!!)

    I highly recommend that you prepare for the post BAU Apocalypse by visiting malaria-infested areas and exposing yourself to the parasites…. and being treated so that you don’t die … and you gain immunity….. there is one slight problem…. apparently there are upwards of 200 different strains…. and immunity from one does not give you immunity from the others…

    I wonder if… if…. you dose yourself with small amounts of radiation …. then work your way up to very high doses… if you might similarly obtain immunity from the spent fuel ponds…

    Perhaps you could make up some disease or injury and ask your doctor to prescribe x-rays… or go to the dentist and ask for him to xray your head…. keep going to different doctors/dentists and repeating the procedures…. until you believe you have built up immunity.

    Or you could just take the FE Challenge… realize the entire concept of DPing is futile and actually quite ridiculous (I have to laugh at myself for being so fo-olish for those years of delusional thinking) and just throw in the towel… and begin living….

    Like I said… I am here to help…. happy to field questions.

    Yours truly,

    Fast Eddy esquire

  5. Rodster says:

    Here’s another Peak Prosperity individual who does not have a firm grip/grasp on reality and his/her math is off by 3 years:

    “My Vision: What Life Will Look Like in 2040

    These are some objective characteristics of everyday living 25 years from now. This vision describes key features of the life-style of individuals and families, and the neighborhoods and communities in which they live. The structural foundation of this vision is based on the “What Should I Do?” guide (Martenson, 2016, ).

    Financial – Our mediums of exchange. We have a variety of “money” systems. There are different currencies in local/regional jurisdictions as well as national currencies. These are separate but usually interchangeable. The local currencies are used primarily for frequent, small purchases (e.g., groceries, haircuts, etc.), while national currencies are typically used for larger purchases (e.g., taxes, mortgages, etc.). Banks are small local and regional institutions. These various currencies help assure a democratic financial system, one that enables individual independence, and avoids inappropriate control by larger entities (e.g., large corporations, powerful governments).

    Informal exchange is common; it is more common than exchanges involving currency. Bartering is an everyday activity. The gift economy, in which giving away one’s energy and resources is seen as an indicator of wealth and capability and is respected and admired, is frequently practiced.

    The USD is used much as it is now. However, its use is carefully regulated so that compensation and income is fair and equitable. Profit and larger incomes incentivizes extra effort and wise investment, but progressive taxation mitigates greedy accumulation of resources and control.

    Living – Our life-style: health, nutrition and food sources, sleep, and fitness.

    Most food is locally sourced. Most families grow gardens, and get part of their food from this backyard source. Most families who don’t have gardens get food from CSAs or farmers markets. Most food is grown using permaculture principles. Backyard and balcony gardening is commonplace. While “supermarkets” exist, they are small and focus on specialty foods and foods that cannot be grown locally. Most animal products come from local/regional farms, and are distributed primarily through CSAs, farmers markets, and supermarkets. Most people are personally acquainted with those who grow or distribute their food.

    The typical diet consists mostly of whole vegetable, grain, and protein foods. Locally grown, it is organic and rich in trace minerals and probiotics. Processed foods are rare; they seem quaint and nostalgic. Children relish the current foods, and they often utter expressions of disgust when hearing descriptions of the high salt, sugary, fat-laden foods that some adults recall having eaten.

    Most people are of normal weight; obesity is rare. Current dietary preferences as well as exercise from gardening and other physical labor contribute to optimum health.

    Work: The majority of people work from home. Telecommuting is common. Most families work at home either full-time or part-time (e.g., furniture making, egg production) or in their local community (e.g., school teaching, primary care health services, small factories).

    Communication: The Internet works well. Due to overwhelming popular demand and worldwide governmental recognition of its importance, sufficient sovereign resources are devoted to its development and maintenance. It is an essential hub of commercial, educational, and cultural (e.g., news, movies) activity.

    Infrastructure: Residential areas are organized into communities (about 5000 residents) and neighborhoods (about 100 residents). Each community and neighborhood usually has a “node”, a building that serves multiple functions. For example, school activities, adult education, and other civic functions are held in these nodes. Most nodes have a small general store and farmers market. Neighborhood nodes usually have post office and parcel distribution services; residents are notified by email of package and mail arrival whereupon they walk or bike to pick it up.

    Material – the tangible things we use in our daily lives including the practical qualities they produce

    Energy: Energy use is modest. Fossil fuels are costly to buy, and are used sparingly. In contrast, the cost of electricity is modest since it comes almost exclusively from wind and solar sources. Buildings are well insulated; heating, cooling, and ventilation are carefully monitored and controlled.

    Transportation: Electrically powered cars and trucks are used almost exclusively when long-distance or load-hauling transportation is needed. Transportation over shorter distances is frequently by bicycle or often by walking.

    Water: Water is sourced primarily from public utilities, but most families have developed back-up sources as well. Rain catchment systems and small wells are common.

    Tools: Most adults are skilled in a variety of handcrafts (e.g., carpentry, electrical repair, gardening, sewing) and have access to the tools needed in these activities. Most people have a collection of tools that are used daily (e.g., garden hoes, hammers, screwdrivers), and have access to larger tools (e.g., tractors, band saws) and those used less often (e.g., winches, pressure sprayers) via Internet-based neighborhood tool banks such as a Library of Things (Johnson, 2016).

    Security: Most communities and neighborhoods feel safe and secure. This is a by-product of community cohesion. Neighborhood watch programs are ubiquitous. Some communities have organized citizen patrols that communicate closely with local law enforcement officials.

    Governance: The role of national and international governments has been minimized following the collapse of “the one-percent” and the role of local government has increased. People value self-determination and fairness, and are involved especially in local governance. Most decision-making occurs at the community level. Transparency characterizes governmental functions at all levels. People are well educated about how governments function, and most people participate in governmental decision-making.

    Knowledge – the mastery of information and skills with which one creates value that’s exchanged for needed goods and services.

    Educational activities are commonplace. While formal educational programs are available, most are coordinated and delivered to individual homes and community meeting places via the Internet.

    Universities and professional schools sponsor programs of higher education in which information is accessed primarily online. Professors’ lectures, graphic images, videos, and e-books, for example, provide educational content. Similarly, students’ educational creations are submitted to their professors via the Internet.

    However, there is a substantial emphasis on skill development that is best accomplished with “hands-on” instruction. Almost all students, therefore, have one or more mentors for this purpose. While most of these knowledge acquisition and skill development activities occur in the student’s locale, students travel to the site of the sponsoring university for comprehensive exams.

    Common education (K-12) is similarly structured. Each neighborhood has a building, a “node”, which serves many functions; it is used almost every day for educational activities. Students walk or bike to school each day. Teachers’ efforts focus on coordination and facilitation of educational activities more than direct instruction.

    Continuing education for adults is common. Recognizing the need for adults to develop skills in many home care and small manufacturing efforts, governmental entities support a variety of enhanced Internet-based and direct instructional programs through the Extension Service that agricultural colleges have had in place for many years. Extension Service personnel periodically travel to neighborhood nodes to bring instructional materials and provide direct instruction and mentoring. Recognizing the importance of individual and family self-reliance, most adults participate in these skill development activities.

    Emotional – This refers to the development of one’s mental and emotional resources that enhance enjoyment of life’s activities and improve resilience to stressful circumstances.

    Recognizing the importance of social support, most people can name their intimates, close friends, and those they can call on and provide support to in times of need.

    Most people can also describe their favorite exercise practices in which they regularly engage to enhance their health.

    People readily describe stress management practices and engage regularly in them.

    People routinely engage in their preferred religious, spiritual, and insight development pursuits.

    Social – Most people can identify the community and neighborhood in which they reside by name, and often attend community and neighborhood events.

    Many people develop connections and communication with neighbors by taking frequent walks in the neighborhood and stopping for brief chats when encountering a neighbor. Neighbors also use online email blasts and services like to facilitate communication.

    Organized community activities are quite common. Most of these are held in the community node, a larger facility than the neighborhood nodes (e.g., large church, old school building, warehouse). Educational events (e.g., “re-skilling fairs” to teach skills our grandparents knew and are relevant again; permaculture classes) and organizational activities (e.g., neighborhood watch, food bank, tool bank) develop self-reliance, resilience, and cohesion.

    Cultural – A benefit of these social activities is that people can increasingly describe their neighbors’ ethnic, cultural, and educational/occupational backgrounds. Motivated by curiosity and respect, people often seek out information about others’ religious traditions, ethnic history, and cultural institutions. A spirit of openness and admiration of these backgrounds is pervasive.

    Time – Life is slow-paced. People take time to soak up and enjoy the momentary environment and what they are doing in it. People value being “in the zone” in their activities.

    They can describe the qualities of life into which they want to grow (i.e., their “vision”) and the steps they plan to take to develop these qualities. They often reflect on and revise their vision and plans; they do so individually and in conversations with family and friends. This intentional use of time maximizes their sense of hope, fulfillment, and enjoyment of each day.


    Johnson, L. (2016). “Sacramento’s Library of Things shares more than books” (Accessed: January 26, 2016)
    Martenson, C. (2016). “What should I do?”. Accessed: January 19, 2016.
    Wiggs, D. (2016). “Welcoming In the Sinners“. Sermon at Boston Avenue United Methodist Church, March 6, 2016. (Accessed: April 19, 2016)”

    • Fast Eddy says:

      I tried… but just could not make it to the end….

      I know people who believe similar….

      Imagine the shock when the power goes off… and doesn’t come back on….. like a speeding train ramming into Cognitive Dissonance

      • Rodster says:

        I got thru it only to realize, that person must believe in rainbows and unicorns and that unicorns s**t skittles candy.

    • Tim Groves says:

      I agree with the guy that 25 years from now obesity will be rare.
      So don’t throw out all those old clothes that are a size or three too small for you just yet.

    • nothing like a good fantasy to start your day

    • doomphd says:

      welcome to Fantasy Island…

  6. MG says:

    The public transport for free?

    The problem is that the public transport is very inflexible and when you have the ageing population, it does not help, as the ageing citizens have individual transportation needs. Moreover, the depopulation is baked in the cake, the half-empty or empty buses on the roads represent no efficiency gains.

  7. Third World person says:

    so a cricketer has become prime minister of nuclear power country [pakistan]

    Pakistan’s most fragile relations are with its neighbor India, especial over the Muslim majority Kashmir valley over which India harshly rules and which is also the source and weak point of Pakistan’s lifeline, the Indus river. The two nuclear states have fought each other several times. The always fraught relations with India are used by the Pakistani military to justify the perks of its officer corps and its oversized role in Pakistan’s politics.

    Imran Khan offered new negotiations with India: “If India’s leadership is ready, we are ready to improve ties with India. If you step forward one step, we will take two steps forward.” But the question is if the military will let him do that. Indian analysts are skeptical

    • Duncan Idaho says:

      Pakistan will be the first major over the falls.
      But I have been wrong before——–
      India, Indonesia, etc- the possibilities are immense.

      • Ed says:

        Egypt? Italy?

        • Duncan Idaho says:

          Egypt— not a super major, and still has some backups, but they are sinking fast.
          Italy? Smaller population, less immersed in superstition, scientifically literate, Mediterranean climate, etc.
          We shall see– I’ve been wrong before.

      • Egypt has just sentenced 70 people to death, ostensibly for political ‘protests’

        this is never a good sign for any regime.

        dont know if the sentences will be carried out of course

        Italy is swinging to the far right—also a sign of desperation

        • Ohadi Nacnud says:

          “Egypt has just sentenced 70 people to death”.

          That’s nothing like enough, IMO. 🙁

          • Fast Eddy says:

            They only stopped the street postests a few years ago by shooting around 600 people dead.

            I know people who lived in Cairo for 20 years …. they still have business there so visit from time to time … they tell me the people are completely cowed… the atmosphere is oppressive…. nobody dares to challenge the gov’t.

            Gandhi tactics would not work in this brave new world… the authorities would simply open fire.

            Whatever it takes — really does mean that

    • Fast Eddy says:

      Have a friend … uni professor … she had a student from Pakistan from a very wealthy family (private jet level wealth…) — she asked her why she nor any of her family got involved in politics…

      The response — oh we would never do that … we pay others to handle that stuff….

  8. We will see massive land grab, unrestricted cleansing of private and public properties and the elimination of most of the world’s poor.

    Someone once mentioned the Scottish land cleasing now. The Countess of Sutherland, and her son the Duke of Sutherland, instituted ruthless cleaning of the Sutherland properties, and more than 50,000 families were affected. Outright setting of fires on houses occurred regularly and the police turned a blind eye. The cleansing continued till about 1850s.

    A descendant of such evicted, who made it big in South African mines, tried to build a memorial for it in recent years, and build it as tall as the statue of the Duke.

    But the investors suddenly ‘changed their minds’, and he was ‘advised’ to abandon the project in a very polite way. The locals there were the survivors of the cleansing (i.e. those who helped to destroy the tenants), and did not like that idea. A local professor was quickly found to write a heavy polemic against the would-be monument builder and justified the Countess’s action.

    The Dukes of Sutherland are still wealthy and very powerful, and the would-be monument builder had to settle for a life-size memorial for the evicted.

    That’s how the world works. The landowners will kill the rest, since now the rent payers are no longer needed.

    • I know that China kicked a large number of migrant workers out of Beijing last year, saying that their housing was substandard. It seems like it was winter as well. They were hoping that the migrant workers would move back to the countryside.

    • jupiviv says:

      Ah yes, the spokesman for the “edgy dystopian techno-disneyland” clique of the OFW Derangement Committee. If there isn’t anywhere else for people to go, they will fight for what they have. Doubly so if the reptilians start killing them “for fun and profit”. What would be the point of any such land grab to begin with? I’m not an expert on 19th c land grabs, but I’ll bet a major reason for the one you mentioned was the introduction of industrial farming. As many benefitted as were disenfranchised, and after all there were enough opportunities somewhere else.

      In a post-BAU world, anyone whose job involves anything besides farming or some technical stuff shall be de facto “poor”, if that word even retains its current definition/s by then. Whatever they own in a globalised, non-dystopian-techno-disneyland world is irrelevant; likewise any measures taken to protect it unless small and remote enough with close-knit community/family having personal stakes in the asset, as well as its operation.

      • the prosperity of the industrial revolution gave us a grudging form of democracy (torn from the grasp of the elite)

        when oil powered industry leaves us, you can be certain they will take it away, as poverty reasserts its natural place in the order of things

        • jupiviv says:

          There won’t be enough resources, or people to work/use them, to support any permanent or starkly distinguished elite. Small, self-sufficient communities will be the norm, barring exploding spent fuel ponds of course.

          • doomphd says:

            see “The Postman”, starring Kevin Cosner.

          • i think there will

            if you think back to pre-industrial feudal society, the uk for instance, had around 4 m people at most

            take a look at what they built–incredible stuff

            castles, cathedrals etc, and all by hand

            true–the nobility had little more protection from disease than we riffraff—but the food/energy producers supported them very well, and they took it as their right because they owned the land—20k acres will support a class of nobility very well, because the rabble was content to live in hovels and die at 50, having bred a dozen peasants to do the same thing, who themselves dress in rags and consume only veg diet and no meat. and possess nothing of value

            • Fast Eddy says:

              I can see how people would have a hard time believing there will be no food available post BAU….

              We look around us and see massive fields of grain and vegetables… orchards…. etc….

              And one of our last concerns would be food…. clearly not enough food for nearly 8B people given there will be no transportation or refridgeration post BAU….

              People are not aware/or choose to ignore/or invoke the normalcy bias or dun ce kroooger…. however these are the facts:

              Soil that is farmed using petro-chemical inputs — will support no crop once the additives are stopped – without years of intensive rejuvenation involving organic inputs

              Effect of Pesticides on soil fertility (beneficial soil microorganisms)

              Heavy treatment of soil with pesticides can cause populations of beneficial soil microorganisms to decline. According to the soil scientist Dr. Elaine Ingham, “If we lose both bacteria and fungi, then the soil degrades. Overuse of chemical fertilizers and pesticides have effects on the soil organisms that are similar to human overuse of antibiotics.

              Indiscriminate use of chemicals might work for a few years, but after awhile, there aren’t enough beneficial soil organisms to hold onto the nutrients” (Savonen, 1997). For example, plants depend on a variety of soil microorganisms to transform atmospheric nitrogen into nitrates, which plants can use. Common landscape herbicides disrupt this process: triclopyr inhibits soil bacteria that transform ammonia into nitrite (Pell et al., 1998); glyphosate reduces the growth and activity of free-living nitrogen-fixing bacteria in soil (Santos and Flores, 1995) and 2,4-D reduces nitrogen fixation by the bacteria that live on the roots of bean plants (Arias and Fabra, 1993; Fabra et al., 1997), reduces the growth and activity of nitrogen-fixing blue-green algae (Singh and Singh, 1989; Tözüm-Çalgan and Sivaci-Güner, 1993), and inhibits the transformation of ammonia into nitrates by soil bacteria (Frankenberger et al., 1991, Martens and Bremner, 1993).

              Mycorrhizal fungi grow with the roots of many plants and aid in nutrient uptake. These fungi can also be damaged by herbicides in the soil. One study found that oryzalin and trifluralin both inhibited the growth of certain species of mycorrhizal fungi (Kelley and South, 1978). Roundup has been shown to be toxic to mycorrhizal fungi in laboratory studies, and some damaging effects were seen at concentrations lower than those found in soil following typical applications (Chakravarty and Sidhu, 1987; Estok et al., 1989). Triclopyr was also found to be toxic to several species of mycorrhizal fungi (Chakravarty and Sidhu, 1987) and oxadiazon reduced the number of mycorrhizal fungal spores (Moorman, 1989).


              Organic inputs will be hard to come by considering nothing can be grown – and most if not all animals are killed and eaten.

              Less than 1% of all farmland globally is farmed organically.

              Get ready to starve. No matter where you are (well unless you are part of a remote primite tribe):


     (note – most organic land in Australia is rubbish and supports sheep only)

            • Rodster says:

              “Soil that is farmed using petro-chemical inputs — will support no crop once the additives are stopped”

              Quite true what’s even worse is that the soil has become a chemical junkie and it’s at the point where we are risking massive soil depletion because of the fertilizers used around the world. So even if BAU continues for several more decades we are risking that nothing will grow even if we used chemical based fertilizers.

            • Fast Eddy says:

              After much research and consideration …

              I have concluded there is no surviving this event .. therefore there is not sense is dedicating one’s life to surviving the end of BAU (Jan etc….)

              However … if anyone still has visions of possibly living out a short, nasty and brutish life post BAU (which is as good as it will get) and wants a hedge….

              I recommend:

              1. Stocking up a sail boat and setting sail hoping for the best


              2. Loading up a container — sealing it with a lock — and hoping for the best.

              Keeping in mind this may only prolong the agony … but that’s the chance one takes.

  9. Sofie says:

    “Perhaps efforts to fix climate change should be focused in new directions, such as planting trees.”

    Permaculture, holistic management – there’s a lot of opportunity for carbon storage in soil, while feeding people and providing habitat for wildlife.

  10. Fast Eddy says:

    For those who find it inconceivable that so many people could be convinced to cover up a ho ax…

    Consider this… the NSA employs around 100,000 people…. and over the years would have employed millions…

    They have been spying on us for a very long time — in fact a Telecoms tycoon that I played hockey with in Asia told me 20+ years ago that they were forced to deploy monitoring software on their networks…. so never say anything compromising …

    In all that time…. how many people in the NSA exposed this spying?

    Not quite apples and apples… but you see my point.

    You go along to get along .. you get paid to go along … and you become a pariah if you decide to not get along ….

    • doomphd says:

      like Snowden.

      • doomphd says:

        in fact, i’ll bet mentionong the word “Snowden” sets off bots to track the conversation containing the guy’s name. then, they send out the Predator drones to circle above the commentor’s positions, taking pictures, watching your habits, always ready to drop the big one on your home/bunker, waiting for the order….

    • Baby Doomer says:

      911 enabled them to create Homeland, FEMA, NSA, ICE, and all of them will be used against the public in the future…They knew this was all coming for forty years after the limits to growth was published..They are going to try to control an uncontrollable situation, I doubt it will work, but I assume they thought they have to try something..

  11. Third World person says:

    From Finland to Switzerland – firms cut output amid heatwave

    A regional heatwave has forced reductions in conventional generation across Europe and could intensify next week as some forecasters have predicted a further rise in temperatures.
    With Europe sweltering under temperatures well above normal for summer, the hot conditions have various knock-on effects on power generation including raising water temperatures to levels that obstruct power plant cooling and lowering waterways which restricts barge traffic.

    The following utilities reported impacts on their output to Montel on Friday:

    France’s state-run EDF reduced the output at its Bugey 3 (910 MW) reactor to 180 MW and St Alban 1 (1,335 MW) to 1,050 MW due to “environmental issues”, indicating problems with cooling. French weather service Meteo France on Friday extended a heatwave alert in 18 regions until at least Sunday morning. The areas include the Rhone river valley, where Bugey and St Alban are located.

    Finland’s Fortum has cut output at its 1,009 MW Loviisa nuclear plant by up to 144 MW until 5 August due to the warm seawater it uses to cool the reactor.

    Switzerland’s BKW has trimmed output by 41 MW at its Mühleberg (376 MW) nuclear plant on Friday due to water temperatures in the Aare river.

    Coal-fired plants
    Grosskraftwerk Mannheim will potentially need to cut output at its 2,000 MW facility by 60% next week. Only its most modern unit would be able to operate if local water temperatures on the Rhine exceed 28C.

    In the southwest, ENBW has stopped Karlsruhe 7 (505 MW) until Monday due to water temperatures
    in the Rhine. They last stood above 26C, according to the local monitoring station’s data. Karlsruhe 8 (842 MW) is presently offline for maintenance and due back on Tuesday.

    Hot conditions, but not water temperatures, have forced Germany’s Steag to curb output at its western German hard coal-fired Bergkamen A (715 MW) unit by 250 MW.–firms-cut-output-amid-heatwave/921390

    look like heatwave is creating problems for European coal firms

  12. Ikonoclast says:

    Scarcity is a slippery concept. It starts out as clear enough at the physical level. If you cannot get enough of some physical resource then it is scarce. It might be scarce because it is hard to find or it might be scarce because there is a lot of competition for it. Finally, even if there is perfect cooperation and sharing, a resource could become scarce because too many are using it. This comes right round to being too hard to find again (in sufficient quantities for many people).

    Once the concept of scarcity is taken into psychology, sociology, ideology and economics then matters become much less clear. There are “needs” and “wants”. There are physical needs. A person needs oxygen, water and certain foods (nutrients). There are psychological and social needs. One can look at Maslow’s hierarchy of needs for example. Beyond “needs” there are “wants”. I want 3 cups of brewed coffee a day. I even slightly need them as I will get a slight caffeine withdrawal headache without them. However, I don’t truly need them. I can go without coffee and my slight headaches would disappear after a day or two. I would even arguably be better off and healthier without drinking coffee.

    My hedonic “instant gratification” preference is for coffee but my welfare would be slightly better served if I stopped drinking coffee and saved the money to maybe spend on exercise or physiotherapy. Someone who drinks far too much sugary, caffeinated Cola would certainly be healthier (have improved welfare) without it. Here, I mean welfare as wellbeing. Thus, we should really delineate between welfare and preferences. Standard economics posits scarcity in relation to preferences not in relation to genuine human welfare. The fact that it conceives of scarcity in this manner is actually a leading cause of over-consumption of natural resources and hence of their looming scarcity.

    Now, below there is a quote that will take some unpacking and its refers to “scarcity” as defined by conventional economics, not to scarcity as defined in terms of biophysical economics or thermoeconomics. I will note here that OFW looks at scarcity in terms of biophysical economics or thermoeconomics. This is the correct way to look at scarcity. However, failing to understand that conventional economics mis-defines scarcity and failing to understand exactly how it does that, means that conventional economics, or rather the standard outcomes of conventional economic are accepted uncritically as the TINA (There Is No Alternative) outcomes of any and all economics.

    ““The elevation of scarcity to the fundamental economic problem rests on some unstated normative assumptions. These include a political commitment to private property, a methodological commitment to not inquire about taste formation, and the idea that human welfare is roughly equivalent to preference satisfaction. The problem arises because current methodology is based on certain positivist principles, and needs revision in light of (the) subsequent collapse of (logical) positivism.” – Asad Zaman.

    Of course, as I said, conventional economics frames scarcity incorrectly. It frames the promotion of excessive “wants”, “greeds” and an entire complex system of over-consumption (via “motivated reasoning” which means finding the answer one wants) as normal and indeed most economically healthy and most personally satisfying. Environmental damage, carrying capacity damage, pollution and resource limits are scarcely considered in this view except to be given spurious “intellectual” throwaway solutions like “substitution” and “decoupling”. It is held that we can endlessly substitute new resources for exhausted resources and that we can decouple production from material and energetic inputs.

    The claims for “substitution” and “decoupling” are much exaggerated. Substitution is possible to some extent but not for energy per se and not for key resources for human physiology like food and water. Decoupling too is exaggerated and where it is not exaggerated, its beneficial effects are rapidly eaten up by the Jevon’s effect within an economy run via conventional economic theory; that is to say a full market economy.

    Where OFW denizens descend into dogma, in my view, is in the uncritical acceptance of the TINA (There Is No Alternative) view of BAU (Business as Usual) promoted by conventional economics and ideology. There are in fact alternatives, at least in theory. It is not certain that these alternatives would be enough. (You see I am not dogmatic.) At the very least, these alternatives could prolong survivability and should be pursued even if that is the only expected outcome. Also, these alternatives are to some extent theoretical as mentioned, at least from our starting point which we could characterize as “late stage capitalism reaching the limits to growth”.

    In terms of real scarcity correctly conceived (scarcity of resources compared to genuine need as opposed to outrageous greed), it should be quite possible to organize a developed economy to provide for all reasonable needs (not greeds) and human welfare using about half the per capita resource throughputs that the USA uses. Indeed, the USA wastes resources at a prodigious rate and produces an ordinate amount of horror and misery and surprisingly little genuine welfare for its throughput.

    We can point to the enormous inequality in the US system. The highest ever relative and absolute concentration of elite wealth in history and yet the most extensive social and infrastructural decay of almost any developed nation. The highest incarceration rate of any nation. The lowest Gini Index of any developed nation IIRC. The worst gun crime rate of any developed nation. The worst record for attacking other nations for no good reason. The most excessive military spending. One could go on and on.

    To simply blame resource peaks, which have not actually finally peaked yet, is fallacious. There are other, deep reasons. Certainly, resource imminent resource peaks, when they actually happen, will greatly exacerbate the situation. However, another fundamental problem is the USA’s political economy itself. The blind recourse to market economics, the takeover of politics by money and corporate power and the lack of a sufficient ethic of concern for the poor and unfortunate are all parts of this picture. Blaming resource scarcity alone and framing it all as totally inevitable is a pretext for ignoring other real and moral dimensions.

    I wonder what drives the thinking on OFW. It’s claimed to be realism. However, scientific and philosophical realism does not claim absolute dogmatic knowledge and prediction of future outcomes. It does not ignore ideological and political economy dimensions either.

    • We need to be talking about “return on human labor” and how much goods and services can be afforded with that human labor. When that falls too low, we have a problem. Return on human labor is very closely associated with wages. It is when the wages of non-elite workers fall too low that we have a problem. Then the aggregate demand falls too low.

      Scarcity can only be understood in the context of how much the economy has available to spend on goods and services. This also needs to consider the fact that the rich won’t spend all their earnings, or will spend it on sevices that require little energy input.

      • Ikonoclast says:

        “When the wages of non-elite workers fall too low that we have a problem. Then the aggregate demand falls too low.”

        Yes, that’s capitalism. That is a known dynamic of the capitalist system. Capitalism is not the only way to organize resources, production and consumption. Before capitalism there was feudalism. After capitalism, we do not know what there will be. Two common predictions are socialism or barbarism but these are only predictions. Could inhabitants of the feudal world have predicted capitalism? No. They lacked many of the concepts necessary. Their society lacked many of the system pre-conditions and technologies necessary to set up capitalism. Capitalism was an emergent system. In like manner, we cannot predict the next economy with any certainty or even if there will be one.

        Complete collapse is a real danger, I agree. I don’t know how high I put the possibility. But I do not put it at 100%. A controlled de-growth is likely possible under certain conditions. If this occurs, the economic system which would emerge cannot be capitalistic. Capitalism is completely unsustainable.

        • The problem of sharing resources evenly is that in the long run, it doesn’t produce very much goods and services (compared to capitalism). In a world competition, states with approach tend to lose out, as did the USSR in 1991. Cuba is not doing well with communism, either.

          Europe and its socialism is sort of doing OK. The problem is that the benefits become far too high relative to what governments can afford. Look at Greece. The long term outlook of the EU is poor.

          • John Doyle says:

            In this blog there is a very interesting opinion on the rise of the welfare states post WW2 in Europe.
            An American initiative!?.

            • The article says that proportional representation (PR) tends to produce socialism, because the coalition governments always tend to be pretty much the same. They tend to promise people what they want. But there is a problem, according to the article:

              “People say PR is democratic, but it strips democracy of one of its main advantages–the ability to throw the bums out and try new things. In countries with PR, the bums play musical chairs, and everything is always the same.”

            • John Doyle says:

              I’m not sold on all his conclusions but he does show interesting views, especially on the rise of welfare states which I had thought was more indigenous and from war weary populations. They are under threat now as the right side of politics has got its house in order and is running the neo liberal agendas rampant across the world using dodgy economics. I like MMT because it is the antidote to that basically evil, and destructive, forces closing in on a corporate takeover of world trade.

            • I think of Europe’s politics as being a pseudo-religion. Europe doesn’t need God (except to a tiny extent in the state-authorized church) because it is already taking care of the poor and needy. It truly took New Testament admonitions to heart, so individual citizens wouldn’t have to be worried about the problem. Thus, socialism is a living state religion. The practice only works as long as the economics can work. That seems to be running out. It also helps if the population is quite uniform in its culture and work ethic. That is changing also.

            • John Doyle says:

              Interesting thought, a quasi-religion. For me it’s not that direct, except perhaps as a way to salve the warmonger’s collective conscious. In Russia, religion was being stomped on severely but their communist example of a welfare state, while it sapped creative productivity, did suggest to western Europe a good way to help the populace. The fact that the US with the Marshall plan actively encouraged creation of a welfare state model is surprising, considering how opposed they are to the concept. It’s still valid today, but distorted by most of the wealth of the nations gravitating to the 1%. Understanding MMT lets one see the resources are still there for welfare and it’s independent of the wealth of the 1%, except that the 1% is disproportionally cornering the resources we all need. Governments need to address this as it is extremely wasteful.

            • Fast Eddy says:

              But John… if you pay people a living wage … guaranteed… why would they work?

            • John Doyle says:

              You don’t really take in what you are told do you? Your inane comment was already answered several days ago. Take a look!

            • Fast Eddy says:

              Can you remind me of the answer to that?

            • John Doyle says:

              Basically you don’t differ a UBI from a JG. A UBI gives money to everyone with no strings. A JG provides jobs at living wages by government creating positions to fill. It’s voluntary so if you don’t feel like working you don’t have to, but you don’t get paid. It is considered there are numerous jobs needing workers, some of which will be bullshit jobs, like many are now, but you can choose to a degree what job you wish to take. The private sector is not in the business of jobs for all. Their model is profit oriented, but the government jobs will feed the private sector as well. Remember we had full employment up until the early 1970’s, guaranteed by the State, Then they dropped the ball. It is vastly cheaper than un- and under- employment, when one tots up all the costs related to unemployment, such as broken homes, depression, and crime.

            • India tries to create jobs for its people. When I visited India, a person was forced to go through many different security checks at the airport.

              In the US, we can provide a huge amount of sevices for 90 year olds who cannot take care of themselves. Governments can start wars to provide jobs. Researchers can research all kinds of medical treatments that will always be too costly to pay for. Free healthcare can be provided for cats and dogs. We have been going in this direction for a long time already.

            • John Doyle says:

              Yes It’s not a new initiative. Post WW2 there was a left-right consensus on having full employment. This lasted until the early 1970’s [coincidentally at the time our civilisation peaked]. Then the conservative side got its act together [following the Powell memorandum] and has had the inside running ever since. Since we now know that neo liberalism doesn’t work except for the 1%, dissatisfaction has and is driving the debate today.

    • Rodster says:

      “Where OFW denizens descend into dogma, in my view, is in the uncritical acceptance of the TINA (There Is No Alternative) view of BAU (Business as Usual) promoted by conventional economics and ideology. There are in fact alternatives, at least in theory. It is not certain that these alternatives would be enough.”

      So you answered your own question. It’s all theory, and can you really keep the lights on 24x7x365 in a megacities like Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, London, Paris, Berlin, Singapore with 100% alternative energy? If the answer is yes then you might believe in rainbows and unicorns.

    • xabier says:

      Ditch so much coffee, Ikonoklast, and drink wine and brandy.

      You’ll see it all in quiet a different light.

      Wine was sent by the gods to ease our mortal cares. Brandy, according to Dr Johnson, to make us heroes.

      Morality is so elastic – just take a quick survey of what has been deemed to be ‘moral’, by the best and most upstanding members of the community, historically…….

      As for greed: one man’s ‘greed’ is another’s ‘just remuneration’ – always has been, and always will be.

      There is no solving this Gordian Knot, except, like Alexander – the hero – to cut through it.

      To the realisation that in this sphere of existence, there will be no wise and just society, carefully apportioning discovered resources according to basic needs to the happiness and fulfilment of all.

      Man is not a wise animal, and he has created a monster which cannot be tamed, only die.

      And Man will probably die with what, in this sphere of existence, he has made: globalised industrial civilisation.

      • Fast Eddy says:

        To the realisation that in this sphere of existence, there will be no wise and just society, carefully apportioning discovered resources according to basic needs to the happiness and fulfilment of all.

        I spent upwards of 4 decades believing we should strive for this….. no… I must correct that… I WASTED upwards of 4 decades…..

    • Mark says:

      To me, OFW thinking is rooted in the laws (as we understand them) of physics and nature. We must abide (TINA)
      We have normalized the extraordinary events of the last 200 years or so.

    • Slow Paul says:

      After a while, you may realize that discussing ‘solutions’ on doomer blogs will get us no closer to the solution. You must find a way to implement the solution in the real world. So you would have to talk to real people, politicians, decision makers etc. Then you might see that man is not equipped to deal with long-term issues like pollution or resource scarcity in a meaningful or truthful manner.

    • Fast Eddy says:

      Ask the UK if peak North Sea Oil is working well for them.

      • Most citizens will be clueless. This issue has not been discussed in the news, I understand. Only climate change, which is considered to be the real issue.

        • Fast Eddy says:

          The UK has announced it will ban ICE vehicles… so there is no need for north sea oil….

    • Tim Groves says:

      You raise a lot of interesting, relevant and valid points, Ikonoclast. I was particularly impressed by this bit.

      Where OFW denizens descend into dogma, in my view, is in the uncritical acceptance of the TINA (There Is No Alternative) view of BAU (Business as Usual) promoted by conventional economics and ideology.

      I myself accept the TINA view of BAU promoted by conventional economics and ideology because I recognize that this is the view propounded by the managers and controllers of the system and that they are going to continue running it in accordance with said ideology until the day they run it into the ground.

      While I can imagine how things could be substantially different, I can see no way of getting there from here without crashing the system. Even if the great bulk of people could be persuaded or prodded into accepting an Imagine No Possessions and Imagine All The People Sharing All The Word type setup, human nature would ensure that it all went pear-shaped. But maybe that’s just me being dogmatic.

      • Artleads says:

        Tim Groves,

        There was an extensive part of my dream that had to do with the sea, and now that memory has faded. But I got up just to note down the dream segment I still somewhat remember:

        A group of people, including myself (“we”), occupy a large single story wooden house on a mountain overlooking the sea. The dream was like a compilation of many many Japanese WWII movies in the Philipine jungles.

        We are toward the front, and somehow the Japanese “force” has entered and occupied the rooms at the back.

        I am with someone else in a room between the front and the back, aware of being a prisoner of the Japanese. We are trying to think strategically, for in those movies the Japanese show no mercy, while being nearly invincible. What will make the Japanese take our side, or at least not destroy us? The white flag with the red circle dances in and out of my mind. What is that circle of red? What sun is red like that? Is it a wound from a cannon? (I once saw a Robert De Niro movie with such an image.) The height of aesthetics and the height of brutality combined. Most certainly spiritual.

        Something we did or thought must have paid off, for now the Japanese open their door slightly, still without showing their faces. They will even accept our cooking, and we hear they want sausage with, among other vanished possible details, tomato. We don’t think tomato goes well with sausage, and ask them if they want it cooked. They agree, but it seems a moot point for them. Is the tomato like the circular wound on the white flag?

        There is promise. Like being in an extremely dire and protracted war, but today we weren’t actually losing.

      • Artleads says:

        “While I can imagine how things could be substantially different, I can see no way of getting there from here without crashing the system. Even if the great bulk of people could be persuaded or prodded into accepting an Imagine No Possessions and Imagine All The People Sharing All The Word type setup, human nature would ensure that it all went pear-shaped. But maybe that’s just me being dogmatic.”

        I don’t know the correct terms, but I’ll say syllogism, a small one, for the above statement. Things being substantially different wouldn’t have to mean “No Possessions and Imagine All The People Sharing All The Word type setup.” There ought to more possibilities than that.

        • Artleads says:

          Billions of students can work to pay for their schooling, and learn while and through working.

          • Artleads says:

            And like anything else in the system, it would be likely to go wrong. But not having kids work is sure to be one of our problems. So are demolitions and developments. So is not prioritizing the poorest places. So is weak or absent local planning. Even so, everything seems to go wrong when you tackle these issues. It’s like being in a system that can’t win for losing.

  13. Rodster says:

    Someone left a comment at Peak Prosperity regarding nuclear waste and why it requires maintenance.

    “Nuclear Disaster Already Baked In.

    My husband lived and worked at the HNR/Hanford Nuclear Reservation as a research scientist in Eastern Washington State back in the 90s. Long enough to know he did not want to live their long term, or anywhere downwind.

    HNR is where the military made all the plutonium needed for our nuclear weapons during WW2 and into the 1970s. Everyone was in such a rush to win the arms race, not a lot of attention was paid to waste disposal. HNR is proabbly one of the most toxic places on earth as a result. There are estiated 53 million gallons of radioactive waste buried in tanks near the Columbia river. These tanks need constant monitering, they burp flammable hydrogen gas on a regular basis. Without competent management and oversight, they could explode. As it is, they are leaking and the radioactive plume is making its way to the Columbia.

    So we dont need a nuclear war or a terrorist dirty bomb to experience a catastrophic radioactive event. We just need to let the time clock on HAnford to run down without any oversight (or the tremndous amount of high tech interventions/energy input) to prevent the inevitable.”

    • Ed says:

      Time to flush it into the Pacific Ocean.

      • Lastcall says:

        Nah, bottle it and give it a cool name; Obamba Water maybe. Drink it before the bottle melts.

    • Fast Eddy says:

      And how many of these installations are there around the world…

      Hundreds of millions of gallons of radioactive waste that will enter the water table and spread…

      Keeping in mind the half life of this stuff is a very very long time….

      DPs…. time to … throw in the towel…. and start LIVING it UP!

      • Rodster says:

        The scary part is that the US supposedly has the strictest environmental laws. You know the Chinese are not any better since they just love their toxic sulfur lakes and crimson red and lime green rivers. And your number is probably on the super conservative side.

    • You may very well be right. I have heard about the Hanford Site before.

  14. Ed says:

    FE, I finished the audio book Against the Grain. Excellent. I like the idea that tax slaves would flee “civilization” to return to a better quality of life as barbarians. I think we have exactly the same today. Today Hillary and despotic rulers call them deplorables. They refuse to slave for the government. They move to low rent places they can afford.

    The difference today is humans are no longer needed to run the state. Expedient gassing (nerve) of deplorable cities is in order, US and WW (world wide).

  15. Ed says:

    Company in general good info on gerbil warring now gerbil climbing loose change. Where can I get actual NOAA data. I have only found sites that require me to down load special software to unpack the data and I am too lazy.

    • Fast Eddy says:

      The head of the Sierra Club acknowledges The Pause …. in fact they created the term….

      So that’s all you need to know

  16. Ed says:

    Texas, where did you go? Please come back on the cost of storing 164 TWhr of energy. You could tell me about flow batteries? Pumped hydro?

    The one I like best is place place mirrors in geo stationary orbit to illuminated the ground based PV at night. 24 per day sunlight. So the question is the cost of deploying the mirror and maintaining them. So we have 300km by 300km of ground based PV, good bye Nevada but nothing lost. That would be about 8 billion kilograms of mirrors in geo stationary orbit. At $1000 per kilo that is 8 trillion dollars. Not bad!

    Unfortunately this only works at scale. Sunlight diverges one percent, that is one meter of travel one centimeter of spot size. To come down for 30,000km geo stationary gives a spot size of 300km. Which is fine if you have enough mirrors and receiving PV to cover 300km by 300kmm (yes a circle but rectangles just make it easier to think and calculate).

    • Fast Eddy says:

      I am told that Texas arrived safe and sound in DelusiSTAN…

      I am still waiting for someone to comment on the Si erra Cl ub video….

    • Fast Eddy says:

      You can check it out on Google Earth … just punch in DelusiSTAN Street….. and look for the house with half a roof missing.

  17. FAANG will rise for ever

    The reason is t hat so many highly intelligent people are in these companies, plus a few others like Tesla, and since they have monopolies there are not going to be any challengers. So, whether you like or not, they will rise forever.

    • Fast Eddy says:

      Or… as with Apple… shorting the company will not work… because some of them have huge piles of cash — or can raise cash —- and buy back shares… and destroy the shorts…

      And because punters understand this – as do those backing the bonds…

      We have what is very close to a perpetual motion machine…..

    • Ed says:

      Zactly. Of course the mass application of nerve gas to slums and deplorable cities outside the core is faster, cheaper, kills more humans. It can be done via drones. Dare I say AI drones

  18. Baby Doomer says:

    As Oil Industry Recovers From a Glut, a Supply Crunch Might Be Looming

    Dearth of investments in oil projects mean a spike in prices above $100 could be on the horizon

    Crude across the globe is being used up faster than it is being replaced, raising the prospect of even higher oil prices in the coming years.

    The world isn’t running out of oil. Rather, energy companies and petro-states—burned by 2014’s price collapse—are spending less on new projects, even though oil prices have more than doubled since 2016. That has sparked concerns among some industry watchers of a massive price spike that could hurt businesses and consumers.

    The oil industry needs to replace 33 billion barrels of crude every year to satisfy anticipated demand growth, particularly as developing countries like China and India are consuming more oil. This year, new investments are set to account for an increase of just 20 billion barrels, according to data from Rystad Energy.

    The industry’s average decline rate—the speed at which output falls without field maintenance or new drilling—was 6.3% in 2016 and 5.7% last year, the Norway-based consultancy said. In the four years before the crash, that decline rate was 3.9%.

    Any shortfall in supply could push prices higher, similar to when oil hit nearly $150 a barrel in 2008, some industry participants say.

    “The years of underinvestment are setting the scene for a supply crunch,” said Virendra Chauhan, an oil industry analyst at consultancy Energy Aspects. He believes a production deficit could come as soon as the end of next year, potentially pushing oil above $100 a barrel.

    Once, market participants worried that supply would peak. Now, they talk of vast oil reserves underground.

    The Gulf of Mexico, for instance, holds roughly 4 billion barrels of proven reserves, according to 2016 data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. But new projects generally require billions of dollars of investment and years of development. BP PLC’s $9 billion Mad Dog 2 development in the Gulf of Mexico isn’t expected to start production until 2021, despite getting the green light in 2016. Such deep-water projects take an average of 3½ years and roughly $5 billion to go from approval to production, according to consultancy Wood Mackenzie.

    The industry has a record of boom-bust spending that can lead to big price swings.

    Right now, companies are cautious after a period of profligate spending before the 2014 crash led to years of painful restructuring. Even as oil markets recover, Big Oil remains under pressure from investors to show it can maintain financial discipline and deliver on promises to improve returns. While production is still growing at many companies, they have been cautious about commissioning new projects.

    “We will have to go to higher investment levels than we’re seeing at the moment,” Royal Dutch Shell PLC Chief Executive Ben van Beurden said Thursday. “My hope is still that we can avoid a real supply crunch.”

    Oil-industry investments fell 25% in 2015 and 2016, according to the International Energy Agency. Capital expenditure was flat in 2017 and early data suggests a modest rise in 2018, despite prices rising around 30%.

    “When you halve your capital expenditure, it’s hard for this not to have an effect,” said Martijn Rats, global oil strategist at Morgan Stanley. The bank predicts that supply shortages, among other factors, will push Brent—the global oil benchmark—to $90 a barrel at the start of 2020. Its bull case projects $105 a barrel.

    A host of other factors are dampening new production. Among the world’s biggest oil-producing nations are Venezuela, Iran, Libya and Nigeria, which have struggled to maintain output because of a range of economic, political and technical factors.

    Concerns over a possible transition away from fossil fuels are also hanging over executives. BP and Shell are moving toward producing more natural gas than oil, anticipating a surge in demand for the lower-carbon fuel. Adding to the industry’s supply issues, transport problems in Canada and the U.S. have led to bottlenecks.

    Veteran oil investor Pierre Andurand is betting on a multiyear bull run in oil. Mr. Andurand said Brent could hit highs of $100 a barrel this year and top $150 by the early 2020s. Others forecast more modest price gains but still believe a supply deficit will raise prices.

    To be sure, strong demand for crude could falter if the global economy slows. On the supply side, some large new projects have been commissioned, potentially signaling appetite for more investment, and companies are driving down project costs allowing them to do more for less. Likewise, soaring production from U.S. shale fields has offset underinvestment and declines elsewhere. But the shale industry’s growth is expected to peak in the early to mid-2020s, according to industry experts.

    To avoid a longer-term price spike, companies need to start investing now, and not just in shale, analysts say.

    Without those fresh investments, decline rates globally are expected to continue to worsen as companies finish working through projects financed before the crash.

    In parts of Brazil and Norway, decline rates are already above 10-15%, Energy Aspects’ Mr. Chauhan said. Output from Venezuela’s aging fields fell by more than 700,000 barrels a day over the past year, according to the IEA. In June, Angola’s output hit a 12-year low, while Mexico’s production is down nearly 300,000 barrels a day since the middle of 2016, despite efforts to open up the industry and reverse declines, the IEA said.

    “Nobody is really stepping in,” said Doug King, chief investment officer of the $140 million Merchant Commodity hedge fund. “People still got burned by the downturn.”

    Write to Sarah Kent at and Georgi Kantchev at

  19. Fast Eddy says:

    see the video:

    Gravity will not be denied.

    • Rodster says:

      There was an article similar to this on Peak Prosperity regarding FAANG. Yeah with the exception of Apple and Google the other three companies who make.up FAANG don’t really make any money. Amazon generates their profit isjust a small fraction from the sum total.

      What’s really concerning is that those 5 stocks are driving the markets.

      • We can not live on the growth of companies that are not really making money—just undercutting the profits of companies that used to be making money and avoiding paying necessary taxes.

      • Fast Eddy says:

        Buybacks Set Record, Led by Apple

        First-quarter stock buybacks among S&P 500 companies set a record, boosted by strong activity in information technology, health care and financials.

        In all, S&P 500 companies repurchased $189.1 billion of shares in the first quarter, surpassing the previous record, set in the third quarter of 2007, by nearly 10%, according to S&P Dow Jones Indices.

        However, Howard Silverblatt, senior index analyst at the firm, pointed out that first-quarter activity was pretty top heavy. The 20 companies in the index that bought back the most stock accounted for nearly half of all the repurchases.

        Led by Apple (ticker: AAPL), the tech sector accounted for about one-third of all buybacks, or $63.4 billion. The health-care sector came in second at $35.6 billion, followed closely by financials at $33.8 billion.

        Apple alone repurchased $22.8 billion of its shares, besting its previous record of $18 billion set four years earlier. It was the greatest quarterly volume ever for any company in the index.

        If it were not for buybacks… one has to wonder where Apple would be….

        Grow or die….

  20. Fast Eddy says:

    Jul 28, 2018 at 11:20 am
    One of the dirty secrets of the steel industry is that one of the many factors (it’s not just cheap imports) which contributed to the downfall of the big US steel mills and the meteoric rise of minimills, which are mostly fed with scrap metal, is the steep drop in the average quality of iron ore originating from US mines: it went from 44% in 1950 to just 26% in 1965.

    Intriguingly enough this was due to the same reason of the drop in Chinese iron ore quality: production was shooting through the stratosphere, peaking at 115 million metric tons in 1967. By comparison in the same year the USSR claimed to have produced 96.9 million metric tons and Japan, which in 1968 overtook Western Germany as the second economy in the world, produced just 62 million tons. These three countries were the top three steel producers in the day.

    The US steel industry mostly contracted during the 70’s due to high energy costs which made beneficiation expensive, but not by much: when Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan were running for the White House the US still produced over 100 metric tons per year.

    US steel production really took a big hit in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis, but it’s still the fourth worldwide. and it’s likely to stay there for a long while, unless Korea’s growth-crazed chaebol add over 10 million metric tons to a situation of serious overcapacity.

    • Interesting article. It sounds like it is.difficult to even make boats strong enough to carry iron ore in the giant ships used today. They can collapse if not loaded and unloaded very carefully.

  21. Fast Eddy says:

    Brandon McGlover, 32, faces a potential life sentence if convicted as charged, the Riverside County District Attorney’s office said.

    McGlover is accused of setting nine separate fires on Wednesday, one of which exploded into the 11,500-acre Cranston Fire burning near Idyllwild. The fires were all allegedly set in the Idyllwild, Anza and Sage areas. -Temecula Patch

    What I don’t understand is why there is not more of this….

    ISIS sympathizers…. Trump haters…. oppressed blacks… wicked criminals…. leftist/rightist radicals…. anti BAU types who want to tear down the growth model….

    The odds of getting caught are next to 0…. just a simple flick of a cigarette and you’ve made your statement….

    • Theophilus says:

      Thanks, I live in California.

      In the past you have expressed your support of terrorists killing of unarmed civilians and you have promoted suicide many times. I guess encouraging arson shouldn’t surprise anyone. It’s kinda strange that if someone suggests that solar and wind power could make a positive contribution to our power dilemma Gail will usually offer a well thought out rebuttal. But, when you promote the destruction and death of innocent people she is silent.
      She must hate solar panels and wind turbines more than terrorists and arsonists.

      Another shameful OFW moment.

      • I am not in favor of suicide, especially now. I have no idea regarding how things will play out in the future. It is possible that it will be the best of bad options at some point in the future, but that is not something that I would care to speculate on. I would regather discussion go in different directions.

        • Fast Eddy says:

          Personally … it has no appeal….

          However for those who have already fallen off the the passenger decks of the Titanic and are flailing about in the ice cold waters of the orlop deck….

          Fentanyl makes sense….

      • Mark says:

        Gail’s comments encompass equanimity. FE’s comments are stoic and nihilistic. I think that creates a balance. Beside DeluiSTANIs, there are haters and psycos all over the web. I think that balance keeps this place sane. In the end, it’s just people commenting on the web on Gail’s generous platform. The subject matter can get dark, but don’t take things to seriously or personally. Just my .02

    • It sounds from the article as if increased wage disparity leads to lower energy consumption in total. Trying to reduce wage disparity will lead to exhausting resources sooner.

      • Fast Eddy says:

        * Place our agents and helpers everywhere
        * Take control of the media and use it in propaganda for our plans
        * Start fights between different races, classes and religions
        * Use bribery, threats and blackmail to get our way
        * Use Freemasonic Lodges to attract potential public officials
        * Appeal to successful people’s egos
        * Appoint puppet leaders who can be controlled by blackmail
        * Abolish all rights and freedoms, except the right of force by us
        * Sacrifice people (including J ws) when necessary
        * Eliminate religion; replace it with science and materialism
        * Control the education system to spread deception and destroy intellect
        * Rewrite history to our benefit
        * Create entertaining distractions
        * Corrupt minds with filth and p.erversion
        * Keep the masses in poverty and perpetual labor
        * Take possession of all wealth, property and (especially) gold
        * Use gold to manipulate the markets, cause depressions etc.
        * Introduce a progressive tax on wealth
        * Replace sound investment with speculation
        * Make long-term interest-bearing loans to governments
        * Give bad advice to governments and everyone else

        I’d like to focus on these:

        * Create entertaining distractions
        * Corrupt minds with fi.lth and per.version

        We have signed up for Netflix as we have a rental property and preferred that over Cable Teevee…. (cheaper… on demand… etc)….

        Anyway – I was scrolling through the content and there were a fair number of shows/movies involving l.esbian themes… with full on l.esbian stuff going on … now I am a big fan of that as long at no butchy types are involved but that’s probably because I have been brainwashed to think that is ‘cool’…

        But I digress…

        I have also noticed when I make a foray into a downloaded series that:

        – the use of pr.ofanity is off the charts
        – people endless insult authority figures including parents
        – people are just generally rude to each other
        – there are gratuitous s.ex scenes that border on hard c.ore p..orn

        • Ohadi Nacnud says:

          But why would they want to create depressions? Poverty beyond a certain level is liable to trigger revolutions, sweeping away the existing elites. Kondratieff noticed that capitalism is subject to major depressions every 60 to 80 years, as part of its natural inbuilt cycle. The PTB tried to suppress the 2008 depression, with consequences that are still being worked through.

          • Fast Eddy says:

            Keep in mind this was issued at the turn of the last century….. and we did have the mother of all great depressions not long after the Fed was created…. I’d have to give some thought as to why they would want to create economic strife…

            It also mentions gold….

            There would be multiple updates of strategies since then …. the plan is in constant flux….

            But they are far more careful now — there are no leaks.

          • Fast Eddy says:

            If you read the entire book… there is mention of having to unseat the existing power structures… keep in mind the British empire was still strong at this time ….

  22. Fast Eddy says:

    I don’t know what it is … but for some reason … I have woken up this morning … and am feeling Grrrreeeat!

    Must be how Floyd Mayweather feels… the night after a big fight….

    Time to sing

  23. Third World person says:

    Blue-green algal blooms in the Baltic Sea

    btw Cyanobacteria is oldest living species on earth

    plus Cyanobacteria can produce neurotoxins, cytotoxins, endotoxins, and hepatotoxins (e.g., the microcystin-producing bacteria genus microcystis), which are collectively known as cyanotoxins.

    Specific toxins include, anatoxin-a, anatoxin-as, aplysiatoxin, cyanopeptolin, cylindrospermopsin, domoic acid, nodularin R (from Nodularia), neosaxitoxin, and saxitoxin. Cyanobacteria reproduce explosively under certain conditions. This results in algal blooms, which can become harmful to other species, and pose a danger to humans and animals, if the cyanobacteria involved produce toxins. Several cases of human poisoning have been documented, but a lack of knowledge prevents an accurate assessment of the risks.

    Recent studies suggest that significant exposure to high levels of cyanobacteria producing toxins such as BMAA can cause amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). People living within half a mile of cyanobacterially contaminated lakes have had a 2.3-times greater risk of developing ALS than the rest of the population; people around New Hampshire’s Lake Mascoma had an up to 25 times greater risk of ALS than the expected incidence BMAA from desert crusts found throughout Qatar might have contributed to higher rates of ALS in Gulf War veterans

  24. Baby Doomer says:

    Why Workers Are Losing to Capitalists

    Automation and offshoring may be conspiring to reduce labor’s share of income.

    • Ed says:

      We have a class divided society owners and workers. As automation grows in ability the demand for labor declines. Maybe not to zero but to say $8/hr (2000×8=16,000) good luck living on $16,000 per year.

      • DJ says:

        Also we have the useless eaters.

        As long as we need workers they need to be paid more than the useless eaters otherwise they will chose to join the useless eaters.

        • Ed says:

          Sorry as far as quality of life the useless eaters are doing far better here in New York State than the idiots that work, my self included.

          • DJ says:

            I still think those who work get/cost more money, and even if seems like a bad deal working for some reason we still do it.

            If the difference between “UBI” and minimum wage gets too low you will not have minimum wagers anymore.

            If “UBI” gets too low you will have riots.

  25. Baby Doomer says:

    Deconstructing Trump’s tariffs, turning point in history and the end of globalisation

    Economist Richard Duncan cautions that China can’t possibly meet the demands on trade laid out by the Trump administration; warns of dire outcome for global economy

  26. Fast Eddy says:

    Quick Update:

    Drone footage of Fast Eddy arriving in Queenstown for dinner ….

    Fast Eddy’s welcome as he enters the restaurant

  27. Fast Eddy says:

    Your honour….

    Fast Eddy Rests His Case.

    Yoo hoo … Yoo hoo… my world champion…. it’s time to go … we a 9 oclock dinner booking …

    Ah that is M Fast calling …. I must go …. but before I go….

    Let’s have one last look … 1:39 mark…

    I’ll acknowledge the mea cuplus upon my return ….

    • Sngr says:

      Ted Cruz’s Constant References to Jesus Drive Millions to Atheism

      “WASHINGTON (The Borowitz Report)—The Republican Presidential candidate Ted Cruz’s constant references to Jesus Christ in his speeches and campaign ads are sparking a strong interest in atheism among millions of Americans, atheist leaders report.”

      “Since Sen. Cruz (R-Texas) announced his candidacy two weeks ago with the words “God isn’t done with America yet,” a substantial number of Americans “have begun seriously questioning the existence of God,” said Carol Foyler, the executive director of the American Society of Atheists.”

      ““It’s been amazing,” Foyler said. “We’re getting calls from people who are curious about atheism for the first time in their lives. And when we ask them what got them thinking about it, they all say the same thing: ‘I just heard Ted Cruz talk.’ ”

      Foyler said that her group often notices a surge in atheism after natural disasters or other traumatic events that rattle people’s faith, but, she added, “We’ve never seen anything like Ted Cruz.”

      After Cruz aired an Easter weekend campaign ad in which he spoke of the transformative power of Christ, Foyler said, “Our phones were ringing off the hook.”

      “After Cruz aired an Easter weekend campaign ad in which he spoke of the transformative power of Christ, Foyler said, “Our phones were ringing off the hook.”

      “As an atheist, I naturally don’t believe in the power of Christ to transform people,” she said. “But I definitely believe in the power of Ted Cruz to transform people into atheists.”

      Richard Dawkins, the evolutionary biologist and outspoken atheist, said that Cruz’s ability to convert millions to atheism was “nothing short of extraordinary.”

      “Ted Cruz has created more atheists in two weeks than I have in decades,” Dawkins said.”

      • jupiviv says:

        “Curious about atheism” is probably a euphemism for “wants to believe in techno-disneyland”.

        • Good way of putting the situation.

          • this is the latest tweet from Dawkins

            I think he’s finally lost it:

            /////I’m actively working on 2 new books. Outgrowing God is Atheism for Teenagers. Second one (illustrated) is Atheism for Children. It still needs a title. Maybe OMG I think I’m an Atheist. Both will be seen by some as blasphemous. And as hate speech, simply for telling the truth./////

            I used to have a lot of respect for the guy

  28. Fast Eddy says:

    I am pleased to announce that going forward…. there will be no need to waste time and space on FW with the debate about man made GG wWWW….


    I have saved this video to my quick reference library…

    And whenever this topic crops up ….. my very elegant response will involved a control v ….

    And this … will put an immediate end ….to the debate… because there is NO debate…

    The ho ax… is exposed

    • Fast Eddy says:

      I hear gears grinding … I smell tire rubber burning …. and brains melting …

    • JeremyT says:

      Interesting that Cruz appears to have lost his little fingers and can only count up to eighteen (using his toes obviously). Most people use decades of data, or half century means or the like to show how longer term impacts are seen ” in the data”.
      Fast Eddy is now down to the ‘two years’ temperatures have been falling as the impact of 1998’s high temperature has been eroded by subsequent higher years on Cruz’s 18 year measure.
      The OFW position is that alarm is unnecessary because system failure will halt the use of fossil fuels and its pollution and create conditions of distress prior to and greater than climate impacts that have been suggested by AGW proponents.
      Yet FE persists is stirring these fake MSM memes, despite Gail’s observations.

      • whether agw is there or not is largely irrelevant anyway

        there are three horsemen in this apocalypse—climate change, overpopulation and energy depletion

        try to deal with one and the other two will rear up and bite you in the ass whatever you do.

        • Tim Groves says:

          Yes and no. As I see it, there are four horsemen in this apocalypse—pollution/environmental degradation, overpopulation, energy depletion, and debt (finance). I’ve stuck pollution and environmental degradation on the same horse because these two are joined at the waist; more pollution translates directly into more environmental degradation.

          By contrast, the other three horses are merely roped together so that, the lead horse—overpopulation—will tend to drag the other horses along with it, and if any of the horses stumbles over the cliff, it will tend to bring the rest of them along with it.

          All this can happen regardless of changing weather or cli-matic conditions, whether natural or artificially induced. But as the story of Joseph and the Pharaoh illustrates, seven fat cows are followed by seven thin cows, and if you don’t plan for seven years of famine by stockpiling enough grain, your civilization is going to be toast.

          If you can successfully deal with overpopulation—the lead horse in my opinion—by thinning the herd significantly, in theory you can ameliorate almost all the other negatives by effectively providing more of everything per capita. However, if you do that, debt (finance) is going to bite you in the ass—unless you kill off lots and lots of the right kind of people.

          But it isn’t an easy thing to do. You have to be as actively and self-righteously brutal as only SJW types can be. For example, in the Poor World, encouraging old-fashioned war, banditry and unrest can actually work to increase population even as it multiplies human suffering. But to really reduce population, you also have to keep the aid agencies from ameliorating the situation. Perhaps the most successful attempt at Third World population reduction in recent decades was in Pol Pot’s Cambodia—and this was because the government didn’t allow outside interference. By contrast, the famines in Ethiopia, Somalia and North Korea made barely a dent in those countries’s rapid population growth.

          In the industrialized world, the potential exists to eliminate the weak and ineffectual, and this was attempted enthusiastically in some places during “the Age of Extremes” between the two world wars and during the second one. Today, there are rumors of a covert “war on senior citizens” to eliminate their entitlements and their claims on society’s available resources, while confiscating some of their property.

          This can be done by vaccinating them for flu every year and encouraging them to take medical tests so that they can be diagnosed with various diseases that require them to be poisoned with powerful drugs, and also by making the cost of medicine so expensive that many seniors avoid getting medical treatment altogether. In addition, in the colder parts of the world, their pensions and access to various allowances can be ratcheted down to the point where they are forced to chose between winter heating and adequate nutrition. Raising fuel prices by stigmatizing coal and oil and encouraging unreliable “renewable” electricity generation helps to tighten the vice here. Introducing pathogens into the food chain or the air can help too.

          If all this can be done surreptitiously it might not even be noticed by the bulk of the population, who can be encouraged to believe that they’ve simply fallen on hard times.

          I’m not advocating any of the above policies. I merely observe that when the going gets really tough, a certain kind of ideologue may come along and implement such policies in the belief that such radical action will save society from an even worse fate.

          • Fast Eddy says:

            Destroying pension returns forces them to eat cat food…. I suspect that would further erode health … and contribute to early death….

            • Tim Groves says:

              My cats eat quite a bit of human food in the form of canned fish including sardines, mackerel, saury, a bit of salmon, a bit of tuna…. Apart from the mercury, microplastics and assorted radionuclides, it’s healthy and delicious for felines and humans alike. And some of it is dirt cheap. So cheap, indeed, that I doubt the veracity of the Made in Japan labels on the cans.

          • Ed says:

            Tim, YES!, YES!, YES!!!!
            “This can be done by vaccinating them for flu every year and encouraging them to take medical tests so that they can be diagnosed with various diseases that require them to be poisoned with powerful drugs, and also by making the cost of medicine so expensive that many seniors avoid getting medical treatment altogether.”

            That is yes for telling the truth.

            • Fast Eddy says:

              I had a check up a couple of years ago … and was waiting to see the doc for the results … and was listening to a man who was probably into his seventies complaining about being sick as a dog ever since getting a flu jab…

              And then for those unable to hold down or find decent jobs …. there’s Fentanyl….

              Who needs death panels.

        • Ed says:

          Norman, four horseman climate change, overpopulation, energy depletion and, pollution.

      • Fast Eddy says:

        And now the un-de…niers are flailing pat…hetically … just like el pr.esidente of the the si..erra club did…

        When faced with FACTS and LOGIC that de…stroy their position …

        You are making no se.nse … why don’t you just follow the lead of el pres.idente and state :

        97% of all scien..tists support gooble gabble ……

        Of course prefer not to do that because you know that I have saved this


        ge-no-its-not-97-percent-consensus-ian-tuttle/ and I will not hesitate to use it to demonstrate that this 97% cons.ensus claim

        When you have been caught out back of the barn f.79ing a p.ig…. there ain’t no explaining your way outta that.

    • Fast Eddy says:

      That is PRICELESS!!!!

      I will watch this over and over and over again ….

      • Fast Eddy says:

        I’ve paid my dues
        Time after time
        I’ve done my sentence
        But committed no crime
        And bad mistakes
        I’ve made a few
        I’ve had my share of sand kicked in my face
        But I’ve come through
        I am the champion, my friends
        And L’ll keep on fighting ’til the end
        I am the champion
        I am the champion
        No time for losers
        ‘Cause I am the champion of FINITE WORLD
        I’ve taken my bows
        And my curtain calls
        You brought me fame and fortune and everything that goes with it
        I thank you all
        But it’s been no bed of roses
        No pleasure cruise
        I consider it a challenge before the whole human race
        And I ain’t gonna lose
        I am the champion, my friends
        And I’ll keep on fighting ’til the end
        I am the champion
        I am the champion
        No time for losers
        ‘Cause I am the champion of FINITE WORLD
        I am the champion, my friends
        And I’ll keep on fighting ’til the end
        I am the champion
        I am the champion
        No time for losers
        ‘Cause I am the champion
        OF FINITE WORLD!!!!

  29. Fast Eddy says:

    This is a rather long article….. but in a nutshell…. 97% of scientists do NOT agree that man is causing w arming … not even close…

    And many of the scientists who were polled in this trumped up survey — are NOT even c l imate scientists!

    This is a f789ing JOKE.

    And consider this — given the rabid nature of those who believe this bull sh it…. if you are a c l imate scientist….. are you going to put your neck on the chopping block and state — this is bull sh it????

    Guess what would happen:

    1. Forget about funding — all the funding available is related to coming up with a story that supports the ho ax

    2. Get ready for a tomato to be aimed at your head — or a key down the side of your car

    3. And forget about showing up at a dinner pahtee… you are the pariah nobody wants to talk to

    The 97 Percent Solution

    Unable to address Texas senator Ted Cruz’s questions about “the Pause” — the apparent GGGG WWWW standstill, now almost 19 years long — at Tuesday’s meeting of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Oversight, Sierra Club president Aaron Mair, after an uncomfortable pause of his own, appealed to authority: “Ninety-seven percent of scientists concur and agree that there is xxxx yyyyyy impact,” he stated multiple times.

    The relevant exchange begins at 1:39 (though the whole segment is worth watching):

    Surely the most suspicious “97 percent” study was conducted in 2013 by Australian scientist John Cook — author of the 2011 book C limate Ch ange De nial: Heads in the Sand and creator of the blog Skeptical Science (subtitle: “Getting skeptical about g lobal wa rming skepticism.”).

    In an analysis of 12,000 abstracts, he found “a 97% consensus among papers taking a position on the cause of global warming in the peer-reviewed literature that humans are responsible.” “Among papers taking a position” is a significant qualifier: Only 34 percent of the papers Cook examined expressed any opinion about anthr opogenic cl imate ch ange at all. Since 33 percent appeared to endorse anth ropogenic c limate c hange, he divided 33 by 34 and — voilà — 97 percent!

    When David Legates, a University of Delaware professor who formerly headed the university’s Center for C limatic Research, recreated Cook’s study, he found that “only 41 papers — 0.3 percent of all 11,944 abstracts or 1.0 percent of the 4,014 expressing an opinion, and not 97.1 percent,” endorsed what Cook claimed. Several s cientists whose papers were included in Cook’s initial sample also protested that they had been misinterpreted. “Significant questions about anthr
    opogenic influences on cl imate remain,” Legates concluded.


    • Tim Groves says:

      On John Cook’s background, from 2012:

      Skeptical Science is a climate alarmist website created by a self-employed cartoonist, John Cook (who apparently pretends to be a Nazi). It is moderated by zealots who ruthlessly censor any and all form of dissent from their alarmist position. This way they can pretend to win arguments, when in reality they have all been refuted. The abuse and censorship does not pertain to simply any dissenting commentator there but to highly credentialed and respected climate scientists as well; Dr. Pielke Sr. has unsuccessfully attempted to engage in discussions there only to be childishly taunted and censored, while Dr. Michaels has been dishonestly quoted and smeared. The irony of the site’s oxymoronic name “Skeptical Science” is that the site is not skeptical of even the most extreme alarmist positions.

      John Cook is now desperately trying to cover up his background that he was employed as a cartoonist for over a decade with no prior employment history in academia or climate science.

      Thanks to the Wayback Machine we can reveal what his website originally said,

      “I’m not a climatologist or a scientist but a self employed cartoonist” – John Cook, Skeptical Science

      It is very important for Mr. Cook to keep up this facade, as once people learn of his lack of credentials and scientifically worthless employment history they are unlikely to take his website seriously no matter how he desperately pads his resume. As opposed to the highly credentialed climate scientists his staff harassed and censored;

      Patrick J. Michaels, A.B. Biological Sciences, University of Chicago (1971); S.M. Biology, University of Chicago (1975); Ph.D. Ecological Climatology, University of Wisconsin-Madison (1979); Research and Project Assistant, Center for Climatic Research, University of Wisconsin (1976-1979); Assistant Professor of Environmental Sciences, University of Virginia (1980-1986); Virginia State Climatologist (1980-2007); President, Central Virginia Chapter, American Meteorological Society (1986-1987); Executive Board, American Association of State Climatologists (1986-1989); Associate Professor of Environmental Sciences, University of Virginia (1986-1995); President, American Association of State Climatologists (1987-1988); Chair, Committee on Applied Climatology, American Meteorological Society (1988-1999); Senior Fellow in Environmental Studies, Cato Institute (1992-Present); Visiting Scientist, Marshall Institute (1996-Present); Member, American Association for the Advancement of Science; Member, Association of American Geographers; Member, Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Society; Professor of Environmental Sciences, University of Virginia (1996-Present); Contributor and Expert Reviewer, IPCC (1990, 1992, 1995, 2001, 2007)

      Roger A. Pielke Sr., B.A. Mathematics, Towson State College (1968); M.S. Meteorology, Pennsylvania State University (1969); Ph.D. Meteorology, Pennsylvania State University (1973); Research Assistant, Pennsylvania State University (1968); National Science Foundation Trainee, Pennsylvania State University (1968-1971); Research Meteorologist, Experimental Meteorology Laboratory, NOAA (1971-1974); Assistant Professor, Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Virginia (1974-1977); Distinguished Authorship Award, NOAA (1974); Leroy Meisinger Award, American Meteorological Society (1977); Associate Professor, Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Virginia (1978-1981); Chief Editor, Monthly Weather Review (1981-1985); Fellow, American Meteorological Society (1982); Associate Professor of Atmospheric Science, Colorado State University (1982-1985); Abell New Faculty Research and Graduate Program Award (1984); Deputy Director, Cooperative Institute for Research in the Atmosphere (1985-1988); Professor of Atmospheric Science, Colorado State University (1985-2000), Abell Research Faculty Award (1987/1988); Researcher of the Year, Colorado State University Research Foundation (1993), Pennsylvania State Centennial Fellow (1996); Alumni of the Year, Pennsylvania State College of Earth and Mineral Sciences (1999); Colorado State Climatologist (1999-2006); Engineering Dean’s Council Award, Colorado State University (2000); Adjunct Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Duke University (2003-2006); Fellow, American Geophysical Union (2004); Visiting Professor, Department of Atmospheric Sciences, University of Arizona (2004); Senior Research Scientist, Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences, University of Colorado-Boulder (2005-Present); Senior Research Associate, Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, University of Colorado-Boulder (2005-Present); Professor Emeritus of Atmospheric Science, Colorado State University (2007-Present)

      • jupiviv says:

        I see it’s loony time on OFW again. According to that website:

        “John is a Research Assistant Professor at the Center for Climate Change Communication at George Mason University. He holds a PhD in cognitive psychology at the University of Western Australia and a Bachelor of Science at the University of Queensland, achieving First Class Honours with a major in physics.”

        He could be lying about his credentials, as could everybody else, thus rendering any and all speculation on this point worthless.

  30. Baby Doomer says:

    Bill Gates gave out a free book this year to all US college grads, that argued the world had never been better…(pukes blood)

  31. Fast Eddy says:

    Don’t Tell Anyone, But We Just Had Two Years Of Record-Breaking Global Cooling




    Let’s touch base with logic:

    1. Why does the MSM not report this?

    2. How can the trend be towards cooler temps when we have burned close to 100% of all FF that are ever going to be burned? We have been told this is cumulative — so surely this is impossible.

    And even if someone wants to argue it is — then what’s the f789ing big deal — IT IS COOLER – we have NOTHING to worry about

    3. Why do you people get in a tizzy over this — why do you care? In light of the fact that even if it were an issue — we are not going to stop burning FF.

    The only reason I raise these facts and logic — is because the whole story is just ludicrous… FW is above this MSM garbage…. and it needs to be put out on the curb … where it belongs… and I am the man for the job

    • Duncan Idaho says:

      Top 10 warmest years (NOAA)
      Rank Year Anomaly °C Anomaly °F
      1 2016 0.94 1.69
      2 2015 0.90 1.62
      3 2017 0.84 1.51
      4 2014 0.74 1.33
      5 2010 0.70 1.26
      6 2013 0.66 1.19
      7 2005 0.65 1.17
      8 2009 0.64 1.15
      9 1998 0.63 1.13
      10 2012 0.62 1.12

      • Fast Eddy says:

        Duncan – how is this calculated…

        Did they have the same temperature monitoring stations in the same places with the same accuracy in 1880… as they do now?

        And BTW – the last two years the trend is going the other way …. so what’s good for the goose… you know the saying …

        And btw – you do know that throughout history there have been vicious swings in temperature — both to the hot and cold side… in relatively short time periods — as in a decade or so …. verdant croplands turned to desert

        Why do you insist on belabouring such a mundane issue? The KKKKlllimate is changing – like it always has…

        Bo….. rrrrrin…..g

      • Tim Groves says:

        Duncan, NOAA was founded in 1970 by Richard Nixon. Surely you aren’t going to take anything Tricky Dickie founded seriously?

        1934 was the hottest year on record in the USA. And July 1936 was the hottest month evah! According to NOAA.

        Looking at all these annual averages, the thing that jumps out to the serious analyst is how stable the temperature is from year to year. If you were in a cool room and the temperature varied by 0.94 degrees C from one year to the next you probably wouldn’t notice the difference.

        Also, Duncan, according to “the consensus” data on anything covering less than 30 years is considered “just weather”. That’s the standard dismissal the alarmists give when someone like Eddy points out that some things have been cooling recently.

  32. JT Roberts says:

    I just have to say. OFW can either inform or mock the public. If the choice is to mock than there is no difference then child abuse. It’s tiresome.

    • Fast Eddy says:

      When informing (facts and logic) … roll off like water on a ducks back…

      To remain sane… one must turn to derision ….. and when that does not work … one must roll out a full force attack to kill the cockroaches.

  33. Rodster says:

    To show you how some people just don’t think things thru, here’s a poster who left a comment on Chris Martenson’s website:

    “Ok so I’ll put my $.02 worth in here since I have speculated on how this may play out many times in my thoughts.

    First, I assume that all of the potential scenarios mentioned have a good likelyhood of occurring but even if they do not I think resource depletion, esp. the master resource (oil)will dictate the outcome.

    The exhaustion of fossil fuels (when it finally begins in earnest) will severly impact available food both in production and distribution. That coupled with the depletion of ocean fisheries translates into mass starvation for the majority of mammals on the planet. By 2118 I would expect only small enclaves of humans to exist and they would be clustered where existing hydropower was still functioning.”
    If we exhausted fossil fuels as the commenter says then how in the HELL are you going to fix a hydropower facility when something breaks with little to no fossil fuels somewhere around 2118?

    • Seems unlikely. Hydro power needs spare parts, just like anything else.

    • Fast Eddy says:

      I bought land in BC canada near a hydro dam … thinking I’d just coast along until old age having electricity .. reading lots of books … fishing from a row boat…. and living in bucolic paradise….

      Then I stumbled across FW…..

  34. Fast Eddy says:

    In the 90’s I was in Manila… popped into an internet cafe and noticed that there were teen aged women hunkered down and chatting with what appeared to be total losers … men in ball caps and wife beater shirts living in basement rooms ….

    Fast Forward to 2018….. knowing that AI is bull sh it and that we will never have a blow up doll that can match up with a real woman …. I am thinking….

    What if I set up a subscription business… embed a wifi enabled speaker into the dolls head…. the owner pays to have a real person operating out of a third world country (let’s go with the Philippines)….. who talks dirty during The Act.

    The dolls could be sold with talk time plans …. like mobile phones…..

    • Aubrey Enoch says:

      This could be big. All my ex-wives were great people and I stil! love them dearly.
      If they had only had an on and off button.

      • Fast Eddy says:

        In all seriousness… we sold a business in China recently and my partner up in Shanghai is considering his next move…. I sent him this idea…..half in jest…. but half not in jest…

        Not hard to imagine wives buying these for their husbands to keep them from straying…. so many angles here….

    • JesseJames says:

      During H1 2018, Guyana led the top five countries in terms of total discovered resources added followed by the United States, Cyprus, Oman and Norway. These five countries hold three-fourths of the total resources discovered this year. The discoveries in Guyana, the United States and Cyprus are located in ultra-deepwater…….meaning…..very expensive to get oil.

      • I am not sure how important these discoveries really are. If they really represented cheap-to-extract resources, they might mean something. We really have a huge amount of expensive to develop resources already. Adding more to this inventory has little meaning, as far as I can see.

  35. Fast Eddy says:

    I am listening to this

    It references malaria in the UK…. I has thought malaria was a problem in warmer kkkkklimates….

    So I googled this and found that it was a very big problem indeed… and was only eradicated by draining areas where mosquitoes would breed… which of course required much effort and energy….

    This is yet another nail that will go into the coffin of the human species…. another disease that is going to spread far and wide when the oil stops flowing and the weapons we have used to fight disease are no longer available.

    • doomphd says:

      but isn’t gin & tonic a favorite drink in the UK?

    • xabier says:

      I live just on the edge of what was once a major malarial area, The Fens.

      All drained now, but when those pumps can’t run anymore, the marshes will come to within a few miles of here, the land has fallen and is below sea level.

      They said the people from here did well in the trenches in France, as they already had webbed feet.

      • youve been listening to those hoaxers masquerading as scientists again

        • Tim Groves says:

          Norman, do you mean the Fen Folk don’t have webbed feet? Well, you learn something new every day.

          Xabier, those pumps can be replaced by old fashioned windmills like the one Windy Miller operates in Trumpton. Milling and land drainage are two tasks that can be performed at a relatively leisurely pace with lots of breaks, so they are ideal tasks for wind power. And yet, everywhere I look, they use diesel pumps for drainage and electric mills for grinding grain making flower, while tying to extract electricity from the wind.

          • Fast Eddy says:

            Getting deeper into this — highly recommend


            And the malaria situation in the UK was made worse initially — when they drained the bogs…. that was because these areas were regularly flushed by the ocean ….

            When they drained them that caused some areas to retain pools of stagnant water — and the ocean tides did not reach them….

            It was only when the drainage technology improved that these stagnant ponds were eliminated….

            Another point of interest …deadly falciparum malaria was not prevalent because it requires temps in mosquitos to be above 72F … otherwise they die … whereas vivax (not nearly so deadly) requires only 59F….

            Malaria was apparently spread to the Americas by infected Brits …. primarily vivax….

            I am at the point where the author gets into how malaria impacted history …. some very interesting theories….

            I can’t wait to get back to listening …

            But first… a message from Ted Cruz… (1:39)


          • Fast Eddy says:

            Getting deeper into this — highly recommend


            And the malaria situation in the UK was made worse initially — when they drained the bogs…. that was because these areas were regularly flushed by the ocean ….

            When they drained them that caused some areas to retain pools of stagnant water — and the ocean tides did not reach them….

            It was only when the drainage technology improved that these stagnant ponds were eliminated….

            Another point of interest …deadly falciparum malaria was not prevalent because it requires temps in mosquitos to be above 72F … otherwise they die … whereas vivax (not nearly so deadly) requires only 59F….

            Malaria was apparently spread to the Americas by infected Brits …. primarily vivax….

            I am at the point where the author gets into how malaria impacted history …. some very interesting theories….

            I can’t wait to get back to listening …

            But first…

          • Artleads says:

            And hand pumps to pump water–that helped build what puny muscles I have–need not be mentioned.

  36. Billy in Texas says:

    The 25% capacity factor is what is being achieved in the US southwest today. But go ahead and assume a 15 or 20% capacity factor. Heck, double the cost. Can the US economy afford $1.1 trillion per year for 30 years? Yes, it can.

    • Volvo740 says:

      Billy, do you have the number for how many solar panels it would take running to produce one new panel. Everything included. Mining, framing, glass, silicon, shipping. All in. Do you have that?

      • Remember, too, that the costs of the solar panels are all up front. Interest expense adds to cost. You have no net benefit until you payback the original ca
        OST with interest.

        • Jason says:

          Let’s not forget supply and demand functions. If demand goes up 30 fold and supply curve remains same, price will go up pretty significantly. What is shape of supply curve? I would think it resembles and exponential growth curve, low hanging fruit and all that.

        • Greg Machala says:

          I am in agreement that solar PV can power a small scale off-grid projects. It can stand alone as long as nothing breaks. However, as soon as something fails, fossil fuels are needed to make replacement parts. If a person (Billy) wants to suggest that this idea can scale up to replace fossil fuels and power a country the size of Germany or the US, then that is an extraordinary claim!

        • Fast Eddy says:

          Back when I had a toe in DelusiSTAN and was living in ignorance blindness and stuuuuupidity … I got a quote for solar … if I recall NZD45k….

          My power bill was about $200+ per month….

          Fortunately I was not so deep in DelusiSTAN….

      • Greg Machala says:

        And the millions of tons of grid scale batteries too. How many wind turbines and solar panels will it take just to replace those every 5 to 10 years?

        • Fast Eddy says:

          It would appear that … Billy Has Caught the Bus to DelusiSTAN….

          Ode to Billy (and Pauliver etc….) Lyrics by Fast Eddy. Produced by Fast Eddy. Music by Fast Eddy. Copywrite Fast Eddy 2018.

          Do you know the way to DelusiSTAN?
          I’ve been away so long. I may go wrong and lose my way
          Do you know the way to DelusiSTAN?
          I’m going back to find some peace of mind in DelusiSTAN

          FW. is a great big freeway
          Put a hundred down and buy a car
          In a week, maybe two, they’ll make you a star
          Weeks turn into years. How quick they pass

          And all the stars that never were
          Are parking cars and pumping gas
          You can really breathe in DelusiSTAN
          They’ve got a lot of space. There’ll be a place where I can stay

          I was born and raised in DelusiSTAN
          I’m going back to find some peace of mind in DelusiSTAN
          Fame and fortune is a magnet
          It can pull you far away from home
          With a dream in your heart you’re never alone

          Dreams turn into dust and blow away
          And there you are without a friend
          You pack your car and ride away
          I’ve got lots of friends in DelusiSTAN
          Do you know the way to DelusiSTAN?

          I’ve got lots of friends in DelusiSTAN
          Do you know the way to DelusiSTAN?
          Can’t wait to get back to DelusiSTAN

          • Rodster says:

            “It would appear that … Billy Has Caught the Bus to DelusiSTAN….”

            LOL, hopefully the bus runs on alternative renewable energy. You know, by now with all the technology that’s available, you would think if solar and wind were possible some govt would look into that. As has been mentioned before, solar and wind work in limited uses but anyone who thinks solar and or wind will power London, Paris or NYC really needs to think it thru.

      • Fast Eddy says:

        Someone posted the number of panels required to operate an aluminum smelter on here a year or two ago…. I should have saved that info

    • Rodster says:

      The US eCONomy is bankrupt although TPTB won’t admit it. They are too busy handing $1 trillion each year to keep the military industrial complex happy and trying to start wars all around the world just to justify their existence.

      • aaaa says:

        Fortunately the entire world is doing the same. USA should be treading more carefully in foreign affairs.

    • Greg Machala says:

      30 years? Then what? You seem to think its all maintenance free after that yet you have not demonstrated to me that your plan can eliminate the use of fossil fuels. You will have to replace ALL of the batteries in your entire system well before 30 years. Millions of grid scale batteries every 5 to 10 years is quite a feat in and of itself. So, never mind 30 years, it will never be a finished project – ever!

    • Fast Eddy says:

      Billy the MORE on.

      • Tim Groves says:

        Billy’s views represent the consensus on our bright solar (and wind) future. The PR hype on this issue has been so broadly, brilliantly and beautifully presented that most people I talk to assume it’s bound to happen and that we will all be able to quit fossil fuels, nuclear power and even hydropower, which as Duncan assures us, is ecologically unfriendly.

        When I mention in passing that these energy sources currently account for 97% of all the energy used in the industrialized world, either their eye’s glaze over or else they stare at me as if I were one of those cranks who goes around warning people not to use smartphones, eat GMO foods or get their damn’ vaccines.

        • Fast Eddy says:

          The MoT employes the best and the brightest of the PR industry…. relentless…

        • xabier says:

          A BBC radio interviewer actually put some pertinent questions to people at a big renewables conference and trade fair in Britain – subsidies, feeble growth, etc.

          They were taken aback -expecting to be talking to another Windy Solar groupie – and stuttered unconvincing replies, the funniest being a rather limp: ‘ Well, we’ve started so we can’t stop now!’ And: ‘It’s the Future; live with it!’

        • Tim Groves

          I have to reply randomly to comments—for some reason if there’s a video included in replies to me—it blocks my reply window and theres no way of easily finding it
          Ive no idea why that happens. Maybe Gail does.
          So replies may be somewhat disjointed
          Extracts are shown ////////

          cant figure how ‘denier’ is a slur—either side of denial/agreement is an opinion, nothing more—Getting uptight about slurs demeans the discussion itself.

          if i offer facts, i say so, if opinions, i say they are. I’m unconcerned about slurs either way.
          On every topic I freely admit that I can be wrong—if it comes across otherwise—that’s just the way it is.

          I did eventually find the global maps previously mentioned. They seemed to be overlaid with the ‘;junk science’ mantra so beloved of Sarah Palin and others.

          And that the prime reason given for promoting ”junk science” is to extract funds for further research.
          Every aspect of ‘junk science’ is created to extract funds?

          The current climate activity was forecast to happen years ago, as a result of AGW. It seems to be happening, unless those forecasters are still influencing the issue of data to match their original forecasts 10-20 years ago. I find that a bit of a stretch for the imagination—no one has blown the whistle in the intervening years?

          Arctic ice diminishes–affects temperature–affects jetstream, affects weather. Unless satellite images and data of the arctic ice loss are being doctored? Or the jetstream doesnt exist?
          I would have thought NASA would be hoax and junk science free

          As to McPherson, a clever guy but I think there’s something clinically wrong with him irrespective of what he’s trying to put over, his manner seems a bit odd—his forecasts get more unhinged with every telling–cant figure him out. Watch his latest videos. So I discount his theories because there may be something wrong unconnected with his theories. Or not of course. I certainly dont go along with his ‘next week’ stuff

          listened to Moore—until he said : Burning Fossil fuels is just returning CO2 to the atmosphere that had (in some way) already been there. (before it became absorbed into coal oil and gas-)–ouch!!!! ie some kind of balancing out system.
          Until that point I found him interesting.

          (Me)===We are in the processing of burning 150m years worth of fossilised carbon in a 200 year period—that means we are releasing about 700k years worth of CO2 into the stmosphere EACH YEAR which otherwise wouldn’t/ shouldnt be there. Or am I being too simplistic there? I can see no other way around that equation. It certainly isnt possible to return 700k years worth into the air each years and say it’s ”balanced out”

          As to David Titley—i watched him trying to explain AGW to Ted Cruz a while ago. He gave up in despair. (and said as much to me) We exchanged emals a few years ago. He seemed to agree AGW was real at that time. Not sure of the point you are making.

          Judith Curry has a different take on it again, why I don’t know, If she agrees with Moore, then her opinions are suspect too. He destroyed his hypothesis with a single sentence

          • Tim Groves says:

            cant figure how ‘denier’ is a slur—either side of denial/agreement is an opinion, nothing more—Getting uptight about slurs demeans the discussion itself.

            Let me help you out with this. First, I am not getting uptight; I am simply objecting to the use of slurs or pejoratives as this demeans the discussion itself and is disrespectful of other people. You and I are both of the older generation of well behaved British people who generally lament the declining standards of decorum on almost every public forum. Casting slurs on people during conversations, discussions, debates or arguments is just so un-BBC Radio 4. I am confident that we are both in agreement on this. The rot set in when young John McEnroe was allowed to get away with calling an umpire ass-hole at Wimbledon, and it’s been downhill all the way since.

            Second, ‘denier’ is indeed a slur as the word has some rather nasty connotations that you seem to be blissfully unaware of. Of course it can also be used in a neutral context, as in a court of law or in Parliament and in many other places where accusations or requests can be accepted or denied. But in debates, labeling people who disagree with one’s opinion, ‘deniers’ brings with it a strong implication that they are beyond the pale either of (a) decency, or (b) sanity. You personally may deny that you intend any such implication when you use the word, but there is a general acceptance, or perhaps I should say a ‘consensus’ that ‘deniers’ are an entirely different kettle of fish from disagreers.

            This goes back to the story of Peter and the denial of Christ. Having had a Catholic education, I was strongly impressed by how reprehensible and how sinful Peter was to deny knowing Jesus even as a means of avoiding arrest and probable torture and execution. Peter, according to the story, carried the shame of his denial for the rest of his life, and when he finally came to be martyred, he requested to be crucified upside down for this reason.

            This brings us on to Christian Europe prior to modern times, when ‘denial’ of the faith was considered worse than blasphemy and equivalent to heresy. To be labeled a ‘denier’ back then was to be marked for severe punishment, up to and including torture and execution.

            Coming onto the 19th century, ‘denial’ became a term used in psychology, courtsey of Sigmund Freud, who postulated ‘denial’ as a psychological defense mechanism in which a person is faced with a fact that is too uncomfortable to accept and rejects it instead, insisting that it is not true despite what may be overwhelming evidence. Wikipedia is quite clear on the distinction between disagreement and denial: “Refusal to admit to or accept a truth or fact differs from denial in that the individual recognizes or is conscious of the existence of the truth or fact but consciously refuses to accept it as such.”

            And from there we come onto the Holo-caust connotations, which I won’t go into here because there may be some sensitive souls reading this and I wouldn’t want upset their mood unnecessarily.

            But even if you deny that your use of the word was as a pejorative in the light of the above, at a bare minimum, in using the word ‘denier’ you are unwittingly issuing a judgement about a another person’s psychological state based on an opinion they have on a scientific or political matter. And that in itself is a very slippery slope, Norman. I hope that you are now more aware of the implications and ramifications of ‘denier’ you’ll consider what I’m saying and reconsider your use of the offending word in future.

            And if you are still not clear how ‘denier’ is a slur, perhaps that’s a good enough reason not to bandy the term about as well. Just like the N word applied to people of color or the Q word applied to people of non-heterosexual orientation, or the M word applied to the intellectually challenged, the D word applied to people whose opinions differ from one’s own is best avoided in polite conversation.

            • on the usage of the word ‘denier’ I think you take it in too deeply, looking for depths of meanings and offence that are not there, or seeking to apply the word in areas where it is irrelevant, or has maybe changed over time

              ie—50 years ago one might have said “we went to a party and had a gay old time”—now you probably wouldn’t, unless a degree of irony was involved. The English language is full of words like that

              If a jwitness comes to my door–we both ‘deny’ the others beliefs—he believes, i deny that belief. To him I am a denier, but I never recognise it as some kind of slur on his character, and he doesn’t seem to mind either—it isn’t a word that ”must not be bandied about for fear of causing offence” He is certain of his need to ‘save’ me, I deny that I need saving. It’s an amusing 15 minutes on a sunday morning. Nothing more. We are both deniers, neither of us is offended in the least. To be so would be laughable.

              If on the other hand I carried a placard outside a mosque in Afghanistan with I DENY THE EXISTENCE OF GOD on it–i would probably get shot.
              Shooting me, while painful, would only serve to illustrate the weakness of belief, not certainty, Bullets or words—both are equally applicable,
              It wouldn’t happen outside a christian church—except maybe in Alabama or somewhere.
              500 years ago—it would have been different. Times change. Words change.

              The same applies to all reaction to ‘denials’

              But if you really must take ‘denial’ into past eras (why I don’t know) then obviously (as you say) you could invite the attentions of the Spanish inquistion for ‘denial’ of beliefs—but that takes the word itself to ridiculous levels.—But the broad context and intent of the inquisitor and the jwitness remain the same.
              You could be burned for denial of being a witch.
              Again—certainty of belief in something means that ‘denials’ of it can be lightly and humourously dismissed.
              Bringing in holocaust denials isn’t worth response.
              Coming back to modern times, ‘denial’ to someone else of a bit of road you might be driving on can kick off extreme rage for some reason.

              a ‘flat earther’ has genuine beliefs which I deny—we do not, or a least should not, take offence at denial itself. I find amusement in his denial that the earth is a sphere. Why should it offend me? No doubt that amusement is reciprocated. Or he may get annoyed—I have no idea.

              some words i would not use, obviously, some of the words to which you give only a capital letter.
              —- but denial is what it is, i cannot use a word sieve to protect the sensitivity of others to a degree which they themselves have established

            • I tend to take words at face value myself. I was never indoctrinated into Catholic beliefs, so I don’t have that “baggage” with me. As I keep pointing out, the climate does indeed seem to be changing. There seems to be little we can do about it short of crashing our economy sooner than it otherwise would crash. So the subject should be of low interest.

              In all of today’s models, the assumption is made that many aspects of the future economy will be similar to today. Perhaps that is the fundamental form of denial. We can’t really expect an investment made today to pay back as it would in the past over the next 30 to 50 years, because there are too many things changing. Climate is one of them. So are water tables and energy per capita. Bet we cannot admit to ourselves that we may be hitting a turning point in many ways.

            • I don’t think that things are quite as bad as this article claims. There are an awfully lot of people who believe a lot of fairy tales.

            • John Doyle says:

              Yes, like say 320 million ?

            • Fast Eddy says:

              I agree … it is changing …. it is always changing .. it has always changed…. however overall … as Tim has demonstrated…. the global kkkkklimate has been rather stable overall for quite a long time….

              And then we have what the kkkkklimate people refer to as The Pause…. it’s a 20 year period where the overall temps have not warmed…. and in fact over the past two years we have experienced overall cooooling….

              Yes of course we are told that this 20 year hiatus is only temporary … any day now …. if we don’t stop burning coal and oil and quickly swap over to EVs and solar….. worrrming is going to appear and we are going to roast….

              If I am the PR man for the movement … that is the snake oil I am purveying…. we have been given a brief respite… a window of opportunity…. I’d get Al Gore out there pumping and humping away at that message…. I might even consider invoking God here… as in God is offering us another chance…..

              And we must use this — to change our ways — there must be a sense of urgency … I’d have the UK and other countries announce bans on ICE vehicles … I’d have Tesla building a battery for the Aussies….

              We are close … so da mn close….. WE CAN DO IT!

          • Tim Groves says:

            Apologies, Norman, if I sounded too combative or snappy above. Please treat what I say as simply “treasured opinions”. When Japanese companies hold AGMs and the directors are forced to endure negative criticism from the shareholders, they are fond of responding with something along the lines of: “Thank you for your statement, Mr. Tanaka. We will treat this as a treasured opinion.”

            We are in the processing of burning 150m years worth of fossilised carbon in a 200 year period—that means we are releasing about 700k years worth of CO2 into the stmosphere EACH YEAR which otherwise wouldn’t/ shouldnt be there. Or am I being too simplistic there? I can see no other way around that equation. It certainly isnt possible to return 700k years worth into the air each years and say it’s ”balanced out”

            Well, your figures are in order as far as I can see, Norman. Although how much more fossil fuel we will get to burn is an open question at this point. Some people think it’s a problem and some are alarmed about the problem, while others see this release as a solution to the problem of CO2 depletion. This would be the Patrick Moore view. He emphasizes that for tens of millions of years CO2 concentrations have been declining as the stuff gets squirreled away in buried organic matter and becomes coal, oil, chalk, limestone, etc., and during the last glacial they got down to 180 ppm, and that if they drop to 150 ppm, many plants would be unable to survive and even those that could survive would be struggling. According to this hypothesis, the extra CO2 that we are adding is therefore a temporary solution to what may be an insurmountable problem for life as we know it. It may give the biosphere some extra oomph that delays the next great extinction event.

            You speak of balancing out, but natural processes have not been balancing out CO2. Total available in the biosphere (air/soil/ocean/living things) has been declining literally for aeons. To appreciate this, you have to think much bigger, ltting your mind wander outside the box of the contemporary world. This is a middle-aged planet with a long long history.

            If you were a planetary physician and measured Gaia’s atmospheric CO2, wouldn’t you conclude the biosphere was in terminal decline? Even today we a breathing in only a fifth of the concentration the dinosaurs breathed in.


  37. Billy in Texas says:

    Here is the math: 100 quads of energy per year (2.93E13 kwh). 25% capacity factor. $800/kw capacity. 50% stored and 50% used in real time. The 50% stored only returns 60% of the energy stored so you have to gross up the 50% solar capacity to account for only 60% of storage energy being returned. Storage cost $100/kwh. Solar capacity then costs $13.8 trillion. Storage costs $3.8 trillion for $17.6 trillion total. If you believe the $18 trillion/yr US economy can’t spend $566 billion per year for 30 years to do this, then you are the delusional ones. Go ahead and sit around all day in your self reinforcing doomer group and keep convincing each other that progress has ended. The world will pass you by and won’t care. By the way, it only takes 1% of US land surface area to do this.

    • I expect the 25% capacity factor is optimistic in many parts of the US.

    • DJ says:

      If you only store 50%, from where do you get electricity during the night and winter?

    • Volvo740 says:

      My only question. IF this is so Good. Why did Germany double down on coal when they shut in nuclear. Why?

    • Rodster says:

      “If you believe the $18 trillion/yr US economy can’t spend $566 billion per year for 30 years to do this, then you are the delusional ones.”

      So i’ll ask you the $18 trillion dollar question and it’s a legit one at that. If what you say is so easy and workable math-wise then why hasn’t the US and other governments around the world not switched over to renewables?

      Part of the reason is oil is in everything we use including food for industrial civilization to function. Without the sale of oil and the profits it brings in, Govt’s would go broke then collapse. When energy consumption goes down, economies tank. This is not doom and gloom but real world, reality.

      The time to have started your idea would have been great say, back in the 60’s or 70’s when Jimmy Carter was preaching and encouraging moderation and when the US Govt wasn’t $245 trillion in debt.

      • Aubrey Enoch says:

        Ralph Nader said Solar will be feasible when Standard Oil gets a meter on the Sun.
        It looks like a good idea. Everyone gets a bill for the sunshine they use but we don’t get a tax bill for the trillions$ of subsidies to the oil industry thru military interventions in their interest. Electricity is going to be very expensive after sundown.
        Sunshine is the on!y income we’ve got.
        (Ok. So a space rock occasionally. )

        • Everybody better be done using elevators by sundown or they will be left at the tops of buildings. I have no idea what we do for heat in winter. Energy for stoplights is anouther problem.

    • Jason says:

      Do you have references for your numbers?

    • Greg Machala says:

      “If you believe the $18 trillion/yr US economy can’t spend $566 billion per year for 30 years to do this, then you are the delusional ones.” – I agree, money isn’t the problem. First, can you prove there are enough resources to build and maintain all those panels and turbines and batteries. And second, can those resources be mined and processed into finished products without fossil fuels? Lastly, can you point to a country (or even a small scale proof of concept) that uses no fossil fuel inputs and runs completely on solar panels and wind turbines?

    • Ed says:

      Texas with a one day storage of 164TWhr at $0.10/Whr gives 16.4 trillion dollars for the storage. How long will the storage batteries last? Six years? So, 2.7 trillion dollars per year to buy replacement batteries in addition to the 0.230 trillion per year in replacement PV. I will make a vague guess at 0.300 trillion per year for transmission and 0.300 trillion for transition payments new cars etc. So, 3.53 trillion per year for energy. Bill what’s your come back on storage? How many TWhr are you storing each day?

    • CTG says:

      Guys…. what this guy do is very simple (which I can do) – by just typing a few lines and get everyone to write for him. Obviously there were no thinking process (he will deny that of course). No critical thinking or he is just pulling your legs.

      Here was what I have posted many years ago and it is still valid today.

      I have posted this early June, feel free to check and counter check and tell me if it is wrong.

      MYTH 1: Renewables will save us

      Typical solar panel size is 5’x3′. Let us make 5’x5’ as the other 2’ people doing maintenance work. We can line up end to end and side-by-side. The 5′ length will stretch for hundreds of panel. The 3′ will be placed side by side (total 6′) and another 4′ as walkway for maintenance. The typical output is 200W per panel.
      So, I assume that that we will have sufficiently strong sunlight for 10 hours a day (very optimistic assumption). That will make 1 solar panel producing 2kWh per day

      See the links below. The bigger the rotor, the bigger the power, the higher the complexity and there a greater chances of failure. Let us stick to the smallest. 10m rotor diameter generating 25kW. Let us give extremely generous 20-hour wind availability. So, each turbine will be 500kWh.

      1. Intermittency is a big problem. The link shows you how intermittent the winds are at “good locations”. Let us not dwell in locations that are not good. Good locations are usually very far away from civilization.
      2. At night, solar panel is useless. Furthermore, you need someone to clean the panels as dusts can lower efficiency. Forget about automated clenaing systems. It is too complex to maintain and prone to failure. The best is to get a guy to sweep the panels everyday. With thousands of panels, a small efficiency loss is a big deal.

      It takes about 6000kWh (See link below. I take the average number) to melt and make (produce) one (1) metric ton of iron from iron ore. This is not even steel but iron only.
      You need 6000/2=3000 solar panels or 6000/500=12 small wind turbines and run for one full day (daylight hours for solar and 20 hours for wind). Spread out for 3000 solar panels (5’x5′), you need 275′ x 275′ land area. This is the power needed to smelt 1 ton of iron (based on theoretical calculation with no efficiency losses)
      For commercially viable mini steel mills. It can produce 200,000 tons per year. Due to cost consideration and economies of scale, that is the smallest amount. Anything less than 200k tons per year is economically unfeasible. 200,000/365=55 tons per day. Therefore, we need 55×6000=330,000kWh/day of electricity. That will be 330,000/2=166,500 solar panels. Spread out, you need a square of 600m x 600m of land just to power one small iron mill. I am assuming the size of iron mills are the same as steel mills. This is not steel but iron. Referring to the link below, you need additional processing and energy to get from iron to steel. Some points to note:

      1. The land used for solar cannot be used for agriculture.
      2. Assume that the land is flat. Levelling the land uses a lot of energy as well
      3. How about the inverters, distribution centers?
      4. High current (amperage) is required for steel manufacturing. How are you going to “gather” all the current electricity, stored it and put it quickly to the steel mill when they require that blast of current to melt the iron? Capacitors? batteries? Solar power generates small amount of voltages and the current is small. It is mean for charging or “low-power” usage like lighting, computer, fan. It is totally unsuitable for high current types like smelting, stamping, machines, industrial-strength type of use at the factory.
      5. Sure, we can put solar panels in the desert, how about transmission lines (especially maintaining them)?
      6. This energy usage does NOT include preparing the furnace (it must NOT be cooled down and must be continuously processed 24 hours a day), the pre and post processing of iron (separating iron ore, hammering, shaping). It does not include transportation, the power used for conveyor belts, the computer systems, the lighting, the cafeteria food preparation, etc.
      7. How many of the 166,500 panels needs to be replaced daily. Cracked, hit by hail, birds, stones, damaged, short circuit?
      8. We can only run the mills during daylight. We cannot use it at night or when it rains or overcast. Cool down the furnace and heat up again the following day? How much extra power is required. Batteries? How soon you need to change them when mills are running 24-hours a day? That means you need to double the solar panels where one half is used to charge up the battery? 600m x 600m land becomes 600m x 1200m land just for one steel mill?
      9. Getting someone to clean 166,500 panels is a great challenge.
      10. I am assuming 200W and there is no degradation of panels over a period of time.
      11. Let us not talk about spare parts for the solar panel, wires/cables, controllers, converters, transformers (to make it high current), etc.
      12. Yes, government can force lower-sized mills and other forced nationalized projects but just refer to USSR’s collective farm and factories for the consequences of government control.
      ** That is just for one small iron mill. There are hundreds of mills worldwide.

      The same goes for windfarm. We need 330,000/550=600 small wind turbines just to support one small iron mill.

      From , you can see that to make 1kg of electronic grade Si, it takes about 2 MWh. This figure is not verified but I am not surprised as semiconductor is a very power intensive industry. I am also not sure how many solar panels can be made from 1kg of silicon but I guess not many. 2MWh is about 2000/2=1000 panels. You need 1000 panels, working 10 hours a day to provide energy to make 1kg of electronic-grade silicon. That is an irony.

      **Will someone say iron mills are not required for modern civilization ….. ??? **

      MYTH 2 : Well, I can work from home using internet and I don’t have to travel ……

      Datacenter electricity usage in US only (not worldwide) as per – 91 billion kWh per year in 2013 or 249,315,068 kWh per day. That translate to 124,657,534 solar panels needed (working 10 hours a day) or close to 500,000 small wind turbines (10m rotor) working 20 hours a day. If you put 124,657,534 in a square grid, that will be 16.7km (10miles) each side. Just think of how many replacement parts you need for 124,657,534 5’x3′ panels. You need to think of how you can transmit the power to all the datacenters in USA when the power transmission system in any country is crumbling. How many people you are going to employ to maintain, change the panels, inverters, cables, clean the panels?

      Now, how about residential, mega factories and other “modern civilization” critical facilities that requires tons of electricity?
      Are we going towards “using solar-powered” machines to combined CO2, water and air to form hydrocarbons that will be used as fuel for planes? We cannot have battery-powered airplanes…..

      Solar panel sizes and output :
      Wind turbine :
      Wind turbine :
      Energy to make 1kg of material :
      Steel mills :

      Can solar power gigantic dredges, excavators or other “civilization-required” machines that are large and requires large amount of energy (ships? Trains?)'s_Largest_Digging_Machine_Krupp_Germany1.jpg

      • I might add that for heating use, continuous electricity is a whole lot better than intermittent electricity. A person needs to complete all of the processing and molding that needs to performed, before the heat is lost.

        If electricity is lost every day at sundown, this means that whenever heat is needed for long periods, a process cannot be performed.

    • Tim Groves says:

      Go ahead and sit around all day in your self reinforcing doomer group and keep convincing each other that progress has ended.

      Thanks for giving us your permission, Billy. That’s really generous of you.

  38. Third World person says:

    we need remake of this film
    to see how much homo sapiens has destroyed this planet

    • xabier says:

      I’d put it like this:

      Homo ‘Sapiens’ has been rudely prodding Mother Earth: she is about to BITE back.

      Rather like the goat whose hairs I persisted in pulling when a boy, which then butted me flat on my back – I certainly deserved it!

      The wonder is that the goat was so patient…..

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