Who's going to kiss it and make it better?
Dominoes: Merrill Lynch, too.
Decoder Ring: Algeria's Energy Minister says OPEC can do nothing to keep the price of oil from rising “because the increase in prices is not led by the lack of supply, but it is really led by the economic recovery." Usual prize for the first to explain what this means.
We've Only Just Begun: Did Goldman commit fraud? Yes, blatantly. The SEC, Connecticut, New York, Great Britain and Germany all want a piece of Goldman. The charge: Creating securities that were bound to collapse in value and sticking customers with them, in order to profit from their collapse. All 41 Senate Republicans have declared their opposition to financial reform.
Thank You Note: After the US taxpayers bailed out GE, imagine our surprise to learn that it won't pay any US taxes for 2009 because all their profits were earned overseas – they say.
Tree Falls In Forest: In the last month we have been warned that peak oil is fast approaching by: The UK Industry Task Force on Peak Oil and Energy Security, Kuwait University's College of Engineering and Petroleum, researchers from Oxford University, Conoco Phillips, the US Department of Energy and the US Defense Department. Peak oil has already happened in the United States, in Australia, Britain and in 49 out of 65 of the world’s oil producing regions. But it still doesn't make a ripple in the mainstream media.
Cloak of Invsibility: When pundits and prophets go on about the banks not wanting to reduce the principal on mortgages, isn't it Fannie and Freddie that hold most of the US mortgages or stand behind MBS they've bundled?
Drilled, Baby, Drilled: Offshore drilling was going to preserve our petroleum paradise, the Gulf of Mexico was going to give us 1.7mbd, maybe more. Really? Remember Thunder Horse , Neptune Chicontepec? They were going to yield 500,000 bpd, but have already dropped to 120,000 and falling. Production for the entire Gulf, despite the best and most advanced technology, fell 250,000 bpd from September 2009 to January.
Tide's Out: The volcanic ash flight cancellations are doing more than delaying travelers – it is bringing home to shoppers in Britain just how many of their fresh fruits and vegetables arrive by air – because they are not arriving, shelves are emptying, and prices rising. An illustration of the food chain's vulnerability to transportation problems, such as petroleum shortages.
Draining The Swamp: Has the fever broken, have the chills diminished? Are we cured or even recovering? Moody's doesn't think so. It has further downgraded $42 billion in 2005-07 subprime RMBS (hard to imagine they had any value left) and warned of “continued performance deterioration in subprime pools” which is likely to worsen further as still-falling home prices and high unemployment trigger more defaults. It also warned it was “re-evaluating” $140 billion in pre-2005 RMBS.
Me, Too: Researchers have discovered a swirling concentration of plastic debris covering thousands of square miles in the Atlantic, to go with the two huge garbage gyres in the Pacific. There is no plausible way to clean up the oceans, nor to stop mankind from throwing plastics away as though 'away' was in another universe. From Mother Nature's point of view, humans are as disposable, but more degradable – except for the tiny bits of plastic we get when we eat fish.
Porn O'Graph: You no longer have a dog in this fight.