Daily Digest

Daily Digest 2/20 - Roll On The Barrels, The Ethyl-Poisoned Earth, Iran Halts Export To Britain And France

Monday, February 20, 2012, 10:45 AM
  • In Alabama, a County That Fell Off the Financial Cliff
  • Oil And Gas: Roll On The Barrels
  • Shadow Stats John Williams on the End of the Dollar
  • Ann Barnhardt & Warren Pollock Have an Open Conversation
  • Iran stops oil exports to UK and France
  • South Africans Suffer as Graft Saps Provinces
  • As WTI Passes $105, Guardian Says Iran "Military Action Likely", Would Send Crude Soaring
  • The Ethyl-Poisoned Earth
  • Can a return to the drachma save Greece as unemployment soars?
  • Iran Halts Oil Exports to Britain and France

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Economy

In Alabama, a County That Fell Off the Financial Cliff (Stephanie N.)

There is no money for a lot of things around here, not since Jefferson County, population 658,000, went bankrupt last fall. There is no money for holiday D.U.I. checkpoints, litter patrols or overtime pay at the courthouse. None for crews to pull weeds or pick up road kill — not even when, as happened recently, an unlucky cow was hit near the town of Wylam.

“We don’t do that any more,” E. Wayne Sullivan, director of the roads and transportation department, said of such roadside cleanup.

Oil And Gas: Roll On The Barrels (ScubaRoo)

Back then, the industry thought it would be winding down by the 2010s—the giant Forties field was due to be decommissioned this year. But, as in other oilfields, improved technology, new owners and high commodity prices have made continued development possible. Forties is now producing 16,000 barrels a day more than it was when BP sold it to Apache, a Texas-based firm, in 2003. It should still be pumping oil in 2027.

Shadow Stats John Williams on the End of the Dollar (pinecarr)

John Williams of shadowstats.com gave an interview a few weeks ago where he discussed the pending collapse of the U.S. Dollar as the world's reserve currency, as well as the role gold will play going forward.

Ann Barnhardt & Warren Pollock Have an Open Conversation

Ann Barnhardt and I (Warren Pollock) have an open conversation organized to provide background to this crisis, the setting of legal precedent, netting, settlement, and future trends including a potential bank holiday. We talk about MF Global as it applies to savings and commercial banking, brokerage, insurance, and commodities. We talk about numeric impossibility of solving the problem, incest between government and finance, having the victim of the crisis pay rather than the fraudster. We explain how the MF Global bankruptcy process will define how customer funds will be treated in a bank holiday. We talk about the idea of having an honest bank holiday to root out fraud vs an economic crisis which plays to looting and criminal activity of vested interest.

Iran stops oil exports to UK and France (pinecarr)

Oil prices rose above $120 a barrel on Monday, a day after Iran said it had stopped selling crude to British and French companies in a retaliatory measure against fresh EU sanctions.

South Africans Suffer as Graft Saps Provinces (jdargis)

Graft and wasteful spending have sapped the government’s ability to tackle inequality. Only 3 of 39 government departments were pronounced clean in audits by South Africa’s auditor general last year. Only 7 of 237 cities passed muster the year before.

As WTI Passes $105, Guardian Says Iran "Military Action Likely", Would Send Crude Soaring (pinecarr)

As we post, The Guardian is noting that US officials are commenting that "Sanctions are all we've got to throw at the problem. If they fail then it's hard to see how we don't move to the 'in extremis' option." The impact of any escalation from here is gravely concerning with PIMCO's $140 minimum and SocGen's $150-and-beyond Brent prices rapidly coming into focus - and for those pinning their hopes on the Saudis coming to the rescue (and fill the Iranian output gap), perhaps the news that our Middle-East 'allies' cut both production and exports in December will stymie any euphoria.

The Ethyl-Poisoned Earth (Chris M.)

Following the death of one worker and irreversible derangement among others at an Ethyl factory in October 1924, the chief chemist there told reporters, “These men probably went insane because they worked too hard.” Within days, four additional workers from the plant died, and thirty-six others were crippled with incurable neurological damage. The plant, it seemed, had employed many hard workers.

Can a return to the drachma save Greece as unemployment soars? (pinecarr)

Dimitra Noussi, who runs two homeless shelters and a soup kitchen for the City of Athens, said the crunch comes once people have been unemployed for five or six months and cannot pay the rent. Most fall back on the kinship network but there comes a point when critical mass overwhelms even this cultural backstop.

"I’m afraid we’re going to see an unbelievable increase in numbers. We’re suddenly starting to see people in their fifties coming in, and even families with children. They feel humiliated and desperate. I never thought I would see such a thing in my country."

Iran Halts Oil Exports to Britain and France (jdargis)

Sunday’s order, according to the Mehr News Agency in Tehran, came from the Iranian oil minister, Rostam Qassemi, who had warned this month that Iran would cut off oil exports to “hostile” European nations. On Sunday, the Oil Ministry spokesman, Ali Reza Nikzad-Rahbar, confirmed that shipments to Britain and France had been cut off, and said on the ministry Web site, “We have our own customers and have no problem to sell and export our crude oil to new customers.”

Article suggestions for the Daily Digest can be sent to [email protected]. All suggestions are filtered by the Daily Digest team and preference is given to those that are in alignment with the message of the Crash Course and the "3 Es."

8 Comments

saxplayer00o1's picture
saxplayer00o1
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Arthur Robey's picture
Arthur Robey
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Neanderthals.

As a many generation African born person, I am dismayed but not surprised by the South African graft.

It is consistent with the trajectories of other liberated nations in Africa. We were just hoping that after 400 years exposure to western civilization things would be different this time. Not so.

It is an interesting thought that only descendants of M89 have Neanderthal genes.

an analysis of a first draft of the Neanderthal genome by the same team released in May 2010 indicates interbreeding may have occurred.[2][3] "Those of us who live outside Africa carry a little Neanderthal DNA in us," said Pääbo, who led the study. "The proportion of Neanderthal-inherited genetic material is about 1 to 4 percent. It is a small but very real proportion of ancestry in non-Africans today," says Dr. David Reich of Harvard Medical School in Boston, who worked on the study.

Wiki

Poet's picture
Poet
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The Third Industrial Revolution?

I would love to get some feedback on this article.

The Third Industrial Revolution: How Lateral Power Will Transform Society (Excerpt) (September 28, 2011)
"The new era will bring with it a reorganization of power relationships across every level of society. While the fossil fuel-based First and Second Industrial Revolutions scaled vertically and favored centralized, top-down organizational structures operating in markets, the Third Industrial Revolution is organized nodally, scales laterally, and favors distributed and collaborative business practices that work most effectively in networks. The 'democratization of energy' has profound implications for how we orchestrate the entirety of human life in the coming century. We are entering the era of 'Distributed Capitalism.'"
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jeremy-rifkin/the-third-industrial-revo_b_981168.html

I think Rifkin is overly optimistic in his predictions about how the end of the fossil fuels era will bring about a third industrial revolution and a booming economy. Similar to how his gloomier predictions in "The End of Work" came to pass, but the optimistic one about civic organizations rising to the challenge didn't.

Poet

saxplayer00o1's picture
saxplayer00o1
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Greek debt may remain at 160 percent in '20: IMF/ECB

Greek debt may remain at 160 percent in '20: IMF/ECB

 

Mirv's picture
Mirv
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Third industrial revolution organized nodally, scales laterally

I dont think much of Rifkin personally but I am very optimistic that the post reset society will organize nodally, scale laterally and favor distributed business practice based on supply of diffused energy that is collected locally and by necessity organized nodally and scaled laterally as a physical fact.  Already the top energy utility companies are trying to get into the act.  But their price (1500$ or more just to connect a local supply to them  plus monthly fees and taxes that will increase to pay for fiat money boondoggles) means that connecting to the grid gives energy control to the banksters and government mobsters for taxation and control make staying off the grid a no-brainer.  Solar panels can be had for 1$ a watt.  We are already there for solar and other local sources such as wind are not far behind. The playing field has dramatically changed in the last 6-12 months. For various reasons excess energy production at local levels will be used locally and spread out from there.  The central bankster/govtmobster controlled energy paradigm will come to an end.

Nate's picture
Nate
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Poet wrote: I would love to
Poet wrote:

I would love to get some feedback on this article.

Would like to hear Chris interview Riften.  I, too,  think he misses the mark.  IMHO John Michale Greer has a better understanding of how the future will unfold.

Nate 

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Woodman
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Lead poisoning

 That story on tetra-ethyl lead above was disheartening in how long it took to stop using it in gasoline, despite well known dangers, and change came only through the diligence of a scientist willing to stand up and say this isn't right.

There seem many parallels to this story today in energy and economics, where we may not understand or admit to our mistakes for many years still despite the loud warnings of a few.

Arthur Robey's picture
Arthur Robey
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Woodman

There seem many parallels to this story today in energy and economics, where we may not understand or admit to our mistakes for many years still despite the loud warnings of a few.

 

Cognitive dissonance is discussed by Iain McGilchrist around about the 32 min of this video.

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