Daily Digest

Daily Digest 6/26 - Consequences Of Economic Collapse, The Future Of Energy, Why Are Food Prices Rising So Fast?

Sunday, June 26, 2011, 9:44 AM
  • Consequences Of Economic Collapse
  • Detroit: Beyond The Motor City
  • CFTC Eyes Trades Ahead of IEA News
  • The Future Of Energy
  • Insiders Sound an Alarm Amid a Natural Gas Rush
  • The Self-Sustaining, Solar-Powered Emergency Shelter: We’re Going to Need It
  • Zero-Packaging Grocery Store to Open in Austin, Texas
  • Why Are Food Prices Rising So Fast?

Crash Course DVDOwn the Crash Course Special Edition Set with Presenter’s Pack (NTSC or PAL)

Economy

Consequences Of Economic Collapse (June C.)

The state governments have massive amounts of pensions that are underfunded, many cities can’t even provide basic services (such as education, fire protection and law enforcement) and the national economy has lost its manufacturing prowess. Essentially, America has transported into a ponzi economy where everyone uses credit cards to buy cheap junk that is made in third world countries. So you see why I believe that this is fundamentally unsustainable.

Detroit: Beyond The Motor City (jdargis)

...over the last 30 years, much of the world has moved on, choosing faster, cleaner, more modern transportation and leaving America — and Detroit — behind. Viewers are taken on a journey beyond Detroit’s blighted urban landscape to Spain, home to one of the world’s most modern and extensive transit systems; to California, where voters recently said yes to America’s first high speed rail system; and to Washington, where Congress will soon decide whether to finally push America’s transportation into the 21st century.

CFTC Eyes Trades Ahead of IEA News (Johnny Oxygen)

Oil prices fell in the hours before the International Energy Agency announced that 60 million barrels of crude would be released from strategic stockpiles.

This indicates that some traders could have learned of the decision ahead of time, the report said, citing the source. It could also be that someone leaked the IEA's decision. The agency must coordinate with its 28 member nations before making major decisions, meaning many people may have been privy to the information before it was announced, the report noted.

Energy

The Future Of Energy (anton95)

The topic of limitations in conventional and possibilites in alternative energy has gripped the general public's mind to such an extent that Popular Science magazine has dedicated its entire July edition to answering that very critical question. As PopSci says: "Oil’s amazing efficiency is one reason it remains in such high demand, especially for transportation, and it’s also why finding an alternative will be so difficult. But find one we must. We have already burned our way through most of the world’s easy oil. Now we’re drilling for the hard stuff: unconventional resources such as shale and heavy oil that will be more difficult and expensive to discover, extract, and refine. The environmental costs are also on the rise." So what is the existing line up of future alternatives to the current crude oil-dominated energy paradigm. Below we present the complete list.

Insiders Sound an Alarm Amid a Natural Gas Rush (jdargis)

In the e-mails, energy executives, industry lawyers, state geologists and market analysts voice skepticism about lofty forecasts and question whether companies are intentionally, and even illegally, overstating the productivity of their wells and the size of their reserves. Many of these e-mails also suggest a view that is in stark contrast to more bullish public comments made by the industry, in much the same way that insiders have raised doubts about previous financial bubbles.

“Money is pouring in” from investors even though shale gas is “inherently unprofitable,” an analyst from PNC Wealth Management, an investment company, wrote to a contractor in a February e-mail. “Reminds you of dot-coms.”

The Self-Sustaining, Solar-Powered Emergency Shelter: We’re Going to Need It (jdargis)

Daiwa intends to develop this trailer into a commercial product that would be available to lease for governments in need; the company says it wants to get manufacturing costs down and have a better sense of what customer interest would be before it starts churning them out. The company will likely find customers: A 2009 report by the International Organization for Migration found that extreme weather events displaced 20 million people in 2009. (In comparison, conflict and violence created 4.6 million internal refugees.) As climate change scares up more frequent and more intense disasters, emergency workers and evacuees are going to need futuristic tools like this one to help them respond.

Environment

Zero-Packaging Grocery Store to Open in Austin, Texas (jdargis)

The idea is so simple, it's surprising that no one in the United States has implemented it yet. (The United Kingdom, on the other hand, got the bulk food-only Unpackaged in London last year). Just like many people bring tote bags to the grocery store, shoppers at In.gredients will be encouraged to bring their own containers to pack up items like grains, oils, and dairy. If a shopper doesn't have his own containers, the store will provide compostable ones. It's as if the specialty bulk food section rebelled and took over the rest of a traditional grocery store. In.gredients will replace unhealthy, overpackaged junk with local, organic, and natural foods, and moonlight as a community center with cooking classes, gardening workshops, and art shows on the side.

Why Are Food Prices Rising So Fast? (June C.)

Some recent statistics compiled by the Bureau of Labor Statistics are absolutely staggering. According to a recent CNBC article, over the past year many of the most popular foods in America have absolutely soared in price....

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."

10 Comments

rjs's picture
rjs
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 8 2009
Posts: 445
a minor glitch at the nebraska nuke plant
Flood berm collapsed at Nebraska nuclear plant -  A berm holding back floodwater at the Fort Calhoun Nuclear Station has collapsed. The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission says it's monitoring the Missouri River flooding at the plant, which has been shut down since early April for refueling. The 2,000-foot berm collapsed about 1:30 a.m. Sunday, allowing the swollen river to surround two buildings at the plant. The NRC says those buildings are designed to handle flooding up to 1014 feet above sea level. The river is at 1006.3 feet and isn't forecast to exceed 1008 feet. The NRC says its inspectors were at the plant when the berm failed and have confirmed that the flooding has had no impact on the reactor shutdown cooling or the spent fuel pool cooling. NRC Chairman Gregory Jaczko will visit the plant Monday.

 

rjs's picture
rjs
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 8 2009
Posts: 445
Damnthematrix's picture
Damnthematrix
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 10 2008
Posts: 3998
Why Are Food Prices Rising So Fast?

"But if you try to stick to food that is "healthy" or "organic" you can blow through hundreds of dollars in a heartbeat.  In fact, the reality is that tens of millions of American families have now essentially been priced out of a healthy diet."

Does it have to be so?  I do realise that there are truly poor people out there who have nothing.  But in my experience, many people cannot make the difference between what is essential, and what they simply like having.  So they eat junk food, but they own plasma screen TVs, SUVs, and live in houses twice the size they actually need.

Years ago, I was invited to participate in a survey of what "green people" like to eat.  We who participated were actually paid fifty bucks for the pleasure!  So about eight of us, some I knew, and some I'd only ever conversed with over the 'net, met as arranged at a place organised by the woman (as it turned out) who did the survey.  She turned up, all dressed up, high heels and all, in a black Mercedes Benz.  I turned up on my bicycle (it was about 10 miles each way).  I remember that one participant I knew came on a moped, he had far further than me to travel.  Most of the others came by public transport.

She who came in the Merc asked us all sorts of questions about where we lived, our incomes, and other demographics.  To cut to the chase, it soon became obvious most of us were very choosy about what we put in our mouths, even though it was obvious none of us were on incomes remotely close to hers.  A bit blown away, she asked us how we could afford all this expensive organic food on our low incomes......  I remember this bit, because I told her none of us drove a Merc!

Mike

SagerXX's picture
SagerXX
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Feb 11 2009
Posts: 2219
Gonna be a rough start for the DJIA on Monday...

...just took this screencap over at FinViz -- evidently the DJIA futures are current at 118 and change...

 

 

Good for a laugh, anyway...

Viva -- Sager

sammy's picture
sammy
Status: Bronze Member (Offline)
Joined: Feb 23 2010
Posts: 35
SagerXX wrote:...just took
SagerXX wrote:

...just took this screencap over at FinViz -- evidently the DJIA futures are current at 118 and change...

 

 

Good for a laugh, anyway...

Viva -- Sager

 

 It looks to me to be 118 down? Where can one view DJIA futures without fees?

 

 EDIT, nevermind, I looked up the name on the screenshot and found it. Running on very little sleep at the moment. Sammy

Woodman's picture
Woodman
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 26 2008
Posts: 1028
Damnthematrix wrote: "But if
Damnthematrix wrote:

"But if you try to stick to food that is "healthy" or "organic" you can blow through hundreds of dollars in a heartbeat.  In fact, the reality is that tens of millions of American families have now essentially been priced out of a healthy diet."

Does it have to be so?  I do realise that there are truly poor people out there who have nothing.  But in my experience, many people cannot make the difference between what is essential, and what they simply like having.  So they eat junk food, but they own plasma screen TVs, SUVs, and live in houses twice the size they actually need.

...

Often highly processed or junk food is more expensive as well as less healthy and lousy tasting.  Take potato chips vs a real baked or steamed potato for example.  And you can grow your own potatoes to save even more money and get even better quality, not to mention getting more excercise compared to driving to the store.  Part of the problem may be that many Americans aren't interested enough in cooking with simple basic ingredients. 

Woodman's picture
Woodman
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 26 2008
Posts: 1028
Natural Gas

In stark contrast to the above linked article with serious concerns about natural gas...

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Gushers-highlight-potential-apf-3807643486.html?x=0&sec=topStories&pos=main&asset=&ccode=

ALLENTOWN, Pa. (AP) -- Two unexpected gushers in northeastern Pennsylvania are helping to illustrate the enormous potential of the Marcellus Shale natural gas field.

I'd like to see good backup data before I'm confident about future supplies.

Wendy S. Delmater's picture
Wendy S. Delmater
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Dec 13 2009
Posts: 1982
low-cost healthy foods

Woodman, DTM,

Woodman wrote:

Often highly processed or junk food is more expensive as well as less healthy and lousy tasting.  Take potato chips vs a real baked or steamed potato for example.  And you can grow your own potatoes to save even more money and get even better quality, not to mention getting more exercise compared to driving to the store.  Part of the problem may be that many Americans aren't interested enough in cooking with simple basic ingredients.

I made the switch to whole grains years ago and was already cooking from scratch. Grinding my own flour and drying/canning food to preserve it were not huge steps from that vantage. But I am not typical. In my opinion many Americans are lazy. Fast food and junk food and pre-processed, pre-made foods all have the same root cause. The few people I know who bother to cook anything more difficult that heating something up in a microwave are nearly as bad.

Example: I bought my step-daughter some fresh broccoli crowns when she asked for broccoli and she let it go bad. I was supposed to have bought pre-cut frozen broccoli pieces. Yet seasonal fresh veggies and fruits are cheaper and, if you go through the long learning curve to grow food for survival, home-grown foods are the cheapest of all. Now if you cannot even get the average person to cut up vegetables, let alone make the huge effort grown their own, how are they going to manage dealing with food inflation?

But for those who will listen (not your woman in the Mercedes, DTM) food inflation is the biggest wake-up all of all. Some people, at least,  are learning that oatmeal is better for you and MUCH cheaper than macaroni and powdered cheese product in a box. It's a shame that inflation and not common sense has to teach them that.

Doug's picture
Doug
Status: Diamond Member (Online)
Joined: Oct 1 2008
Posts: 3125
Fed buying $300b in treasuries after QE2

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-06-27/fed-seen-buying-25-billion-a-month-in-treasuries-after-qe2-comes-to-end.html

Quote:

The Federal Reserve will remain the biggest buyer of Treasuries, even after the second round of quantitative easing ends this week, as the central bank uses its $2.86 trillion balance sheet to keep interest rates low.

While the $600 billion purchase program, known as QE2, winds down, the Fed said June 22 that it will continue to buy Treasuries with proceeds from the maturing debt it currently owns. That could mean purchases of as much as $300 billion of government debt over the next 12 months without adding money to the financial system.

Does anyone have a clue how this will impact markets/PMs/economic numbers.  According to the Bernank, it won't affect the amount of money in circulation.

Doug

John Steinsvold's picture
John Steinsvold
Status: Member (Offline)
Joined: Jan 26 2009
Posts: 16
An Alternative to Capitalism
An Alternative to Capitalism (which we obviously need here in the USA)
 
Several decades ago, Margaret Thatcher claimed: "There is no alternative". She was referring to capitalism. Today, this negative attitude still persists.
 
I would like to offer an alternative to capitalism for the American people to consider. Please click on the following link. It will take you to an essay titled: "Home of the Brave?" which was published by the Athenaeum Library of Philosophy:
 
http://evans-experientialism.freewebspace.com/steinsvold.htm
 
John Steinsvold

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Login or Register to post comments