Monday, January 5, 2009

SAR #9005

Is Big Oil still manipulating the markets?

Ups and Downs: Friday the market continued its January jump, even while US manufacturing reached its lowest level in over 60 years. But we're a service economy, right?

It's A Gas: Is this Russia/Ukraine spat a market dispute, an ongoing scam on the West, or simply a bunch of criminals and politicians arguing about how big a cut they're going to get?

Behind the Curtain: Lawyers for the innocent millionaires fleeced by Bernie Madoff have turned to the government looking for a handout. It'll be interesting to see if they cite collusion and conspiracy on the part of various governmental figures to bolster thier case. Le affaire Madoff is not what it appears. The 20 year scam required a large and knowing support staff. Federal regulators' blindness to the ongoing crime does not pass the laugh test. As hard as Madoff worked at stealing the money, a lot more people are working harder to make sure he takes the blame alone.

Pre-emptive Strike: Is the Israeli "preventive incursion" into Gaza simply a way to prevent the new administration from establishing better relationships with Muslim nations?

Suspicion: Saudi Arabia is expected to take the lead in cutting production. Given doubts about the status of their reserves, is this leadership or convenient cover?

Team Spirit: Ford declined to enlist in the all-volunteer car corps, so the Treasury is letting GM, via GMAC, give 0% 60 month loans to unemployed folks with credit scores so low they don't qualify for day old pizza. Turns out it was the sort of offer Dearborn shouldn't have refused.

Tide Keeps Rolling On: Despite commands by President Zadari for the shortages of electrical power and natural gas to end, the shortages continue. The populace is not amused.

Six of One: Reports suggest that cutting world-wide soot emissions would slow climate change because the soot darkens the snowfields and absorbs heat. On the other hand, soot in the atmosphere blocks incoming sunlight. Airplane contrails have the same blessing/curse aspects.

Gas Money: Customers claim they are wasting the money not spent on $4 gasoline on groceries. Or savings. No statistics were provided to back up these virtuous claims, although lottery ticket sales have leveled off.

Last Minute Shopping: Getting in some last minute payoffs, the Bush administration, ignoring the advice of two federal agencies and the pleas of the governor, has ordered that 2.6 million acres of obnoxious, ugly, huggable trees would be removed from federal lands in Oregon.

Fulcrum: Alternative energy sources are not free. True, the sunshine is there for the taking and the wind blows without charge. But they must be captured using equipment manufactured using coal, oil, natural gas and electricity. Once installed, their maintenance, repair and eventual replacement depend upon fossil energy. Read the fine print.

Penny Saved: Oregon wants to tax drivers based on miles driven instead of gasoline burned. What have they got against hybrids?

20 Questions: There is no accurate data on how much oil there is in the ground, how much anybody could or does pump, nor any real data on how much gets sold or at what price. The front month price flops around unrealistically pretending to reflect supply and lack of demand, but no one knows enough to pass judgment.

Quote: "A quarter of all British families will have no disposable income in 2009." And this differs from America how?


Anonymous said...

The magnitude, recklessness, and shamelessness of the interventions by the treasury reminds me of Atlas Shrugged: Why should the better run companies get ahead? The crappy companies deserve (are entitled to) a chance too. For the public good.

Now, Ford isn't exactly Rearden Steel, but they were operating fine without sucking on the government tit. The 0% GMAC interest loans to anyone who breathes is a very low blow. What will the treasury do next? Confiscate Ford's patents, designs and dies and give them to GM? Why should Ford be the only one to build the best selling Focus (in Europe), or F-series trucks, right. Everyone should get a 'fair' chance to build them.

Anonymous said...

"...Thanks to a rapid rebound in recent months, global sea ice levels now equal those seen 29 years ago, when the year 1979 also drew to a close.

Ice levels had been tracking lower throughout much of 2008, but rapidly recovered in the last quarter. In fact, the rate of increase from September onward is the fastest rate of change on record, either upwards or downwards..."

CKMichaelson said...

Three things about the Arctic sea ice report: It is a single data point. It is misleading in that it suggests that extent (surface area) is a trump card without mentioning thickness of the ice (am I impressed that water frezes in the Arctic in the winter? not very). Let's not confuse a single event with a trend. And,the source is a fairly well known climate-change denier.

I don't know which post (today) promted this, but wait till you see tomorrow's CC entry...

Anonymous said...


I respect your approach to life. I just happen to feel that you have a BIAS worth pointing out...

If your going to be a spokesperson for carbon worship, say so.

Or at least try to seek out both sides in a balanced approach as you allude to in your site discription. You are intentionally warping the topic. If you cant see it ...

You SIR are a hypocrite.