Hey! Where's The Next Darned Crash Course Chapter?

Thursday, September 11, 2008, 6:59 PM

Here's your handy field guide to upcoming Crash Course chapter updates.

I just finished the final writing and editing for Chapter 18. It will be recorded tomorrow morning, edited throughout the afternoon, and then finally produced and posted.  Tomorrow afternoon is my goal.  This chapter is among my best work ever.* 

Chapter 19 is done, but is awaiting Chapter 18's release.  I plan to have 18 out for a couple of days before "going live" with Chapter 19.

Chapter 20 sits before me like an opposing linebacker.  I have the framework, I know what I want to say (I  think), but it always turns out that it takes far more effort than I suspect.  I will get to it as fast as I can.  (Two weeks?)

* As seems to be the case lately, this chapter took more mental and
physical effort than I originally thought.  Partly this is because it
represents the final chapter of data, which required synthesis with all
the prior material.  Smoke came out my ears.  I built and rebuilt the words and the slides dozens of times.  But it is also because the of
the weight of the material.  It is big stuff, and I often carry it alone, but never more fully than this week, when every official market intervention was running entirely at odds with what I know to be right and true.  I am not looking for sympathy; only truthfully reflecting on the process in the hope that this will help you appreciate my feeling that, although I am offering this material for free, if value is a function of cost then this is a very expensive chapter indeed.

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ianp123's picture
Status: Member (Offline)
Joined: Jun 11 2008
Posts: 9
We're patient when we need to be....
I don't think anyone is actually saying that... well I guess we all are (I know I visit to check several times per day -- and peruse other info). I think though, that we all want the best material possible and we understand, on some level, just how much bloody work you're putting into this. If I can speak for all of us (I'm sure that I can't actually) I think that we're really impressed with what you've shown us so far.

I can imagine that this chapter must be one of the hardest since a lot of the data seems to be more subjective and there's a lot of controversy around it, at least in the minds of regular folks, if not (necessarily) in the minds of the actual scientists (and I don't know if that's necessarily the case either). Either way, it sounds like a toughy.

The last chapter seems to be the worst yet since it has to be one of the most subjective. It really makes me think of an if->then->else situation with a few buts and unless's thrown in the mix.

I think we're all willing to hang in there to get the good stuff. It will take as long as it takes. Don't kill yourself in the process... when the course is done I'll still want to see your analysis of daily news items, etc.

More international content (especially Canadian) would be great too!

Anyway, I've blathered on long enough....

Keep up the good work,

blackrott's picture
Status: Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 2 2008
Posts: 20
I check your site several times a day
Chris, great work, I refer you to everyone. I have no idea where you find time for everything.
Lemonyellowschwin's picture
Status: Platinum Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 22 2008
Posts: 566
Chris, Your work is brilliant, probably underappreciated, but definitely relied upon by me (and, I believe, others) who have come to trust you. Many of us want to understand, but few of us have the background or gift for synthesizing this information and understanding what it all means. So we have to find someone to trust. And, for me, you've become the guy. Now get back to work.
cscoxk's picture
Status: Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 4 2008
Posts: 1
Chris I hope you can use this in solutions chapters
There is another strategy to reduce emissions than putting a price on carbon. Putting a price on carbon is NOT an effective policy because all it does is increase the price of ALL energy. Most of the cost of renewable energy is an artificial price caused by the "time value of money" or the cost of capital. Let us think for a moment. Do we have to put a value on time for the purpose of building renewables and if we didn't what would happen? Let the Central Bank create some money called Energy Rewards that must only be used to build renewable energy plants or reduce energy consumption through things like insulation. Let us give this money to people in inverse proportion to the amount of energy they purchase so they have an incentive not to use energy. While the money is NOT spent do not let it generate interest. What would happen? There would be NO inflation because the money is used to create a productive asset and that means the money we generated will return more money and that is NOT inflationary. There is no inflationary effect from interest because there is no interest. People would change their behaviour to reduce energy consumption which in turn would increase the efficiency of our energy infrastructure which would again NOT increase inflation because we would get the same value for less money. So we would have a compounding system to increase the amount of renewable energy that operates in a deflationary manner. A few small calculations show that we can use this approach to reduce our global emissions to zero within 10 years or 20 years - it only depends on how much money the Central Bank prints for the purpose and our physical ability to build renewable energy plants. The price of energy can remain the same - or even decrease if we want to cause the coal fired power stations to close down because they are uneconomic. Renewable energy without capital charges is at least half the cost of fossil fuel plants because there is NO fuel cost. The cost of renewable energy plants is currently today $4,500 per continuous KW. Within 5 doublings of capacity it will be less than the cost of building the cheapest fossil fuel burning energy plants. The running costs of renewable energy plants is 1 cent per kwh which is half the cost of fossil burning plants. We expect that a renewable solar thermal or hot rock geothermal energy plant has a life of at least 100 years. We know that there is enough renewable energy sites out there to produce several thousand times current energy consumption. We know that at the current cost of electricity the cost to drive a car 100km is already half the cost of petrol so with plenty of cheap green electricity it will only take a few years for cars to all turn to electricity. It is simple, easy to do, and we could start tomorrow and all the extra money we create would actually soak up all the excess money we have created through our debt binge so we would solve "peak oil", fix greenhouse emissions and perhaps go part of the way to fixing the financial system.
hineslaw's picture
Status: Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 14 2008
Posts: 6
Chris: Thank you so much
Chris: Thank you so much for all the great work you do on this site. Being a homeschool parent, we've incorporated your work in our studies. The crash course is amazing. When you're all done, will there be a way to buy the entire course on a DVD? Thanks. Bob
mpelchat's picture
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 10 2008
Posts: 214
Keep up the good work
Keep up the good work! This information, in this manor, distributes the "Red Pills" (("matrix" reference)) faster than anything else out there. Now the commitment, this is to all the people that believe we are in trouble and have hope we can be ready. Send this on to one person, just one. Do not tell them to send it further but send it on. I do not think we need a chain letter ((people hate that)) however knowledge can be infectious.
SteveS's picture
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 6 2008
Posts: 358
I agree on the DVD or CD
I agree on the DVD or CD idea. I'd like to share this with some people that have no or slow internet. Perhaps a download?
bluebird's picture
Status: Bronze Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 4 2008
Posts: 75
Thank you
Your work is greatly appreciated. Thank you for all you do, the videos are great! I have forwarded this Crash Course to my family and friends. People are finally waking up and understanding the severity of this financial crisis, peak oil, and the credit bubble is about to burst.
phredd's picture
Status: Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 9 2008
Posts: 16
Call to Action

First, I want to add my voice to those who have thanked you for the Crash Course and this website. You are an excellent communicator, and are giving voice to concerns that many of us have had, but with an urgency that the rest of us probably lacked. This site is an important wake-up call for us all.

I also wanted to take the time to post a political message I hope folks will send in during this election season. If this is inappropriate, please accept my apologies for this post. It is not my intention to distract from your message or create a political controversy, and it is far more important for people to change their own lives than to engage in politics. Nevertheless, perhaps the analogy I use in the letter will be helpful in some way:

I would like to publicly address the slogan I have recently heard chanted: "Drill, baby, drill!" We simply cannot allow this thinking to dominate our political discussions or our lives.

The state of world oil today is like an impending drought. Let's say you are an ordinary family living an ordinary life, except for one thing: You have a cistern in your back yard that holds an amount of water equal to all the water your household has ever consumed in the past on anything. That's a big cistern. However, you also know that it will never rain again in your lifetime. Not ever. What should you do?

The "Drill, baby, drill!" answer is equivalent to immediately opening the cistern and heading out to water the grass and wash the car.

Our answer needs to be better.

Peak oil is quite probably already here. World oil production has remained flat for four years despite a doubling in price. Oil producers have had every incentive to flood the marketplace to take advantage of the tremendous profits offered by this price spike, and yet they have not done so. Peak oil is the most probable explanation, and fits with most scientific models of the available data. Peak oil means that the cistern is looming, there in our back yard, with not a cloud in the sky.

We simply cannot continue to squander our cheapest and best source of energy.

The cistern is still full. If we make every effort to conserve, we have enough left in the cistern to last out our lifetime, plus a little bit for our kids. Barely, but just enough. We need to husband what we can and focus - clearly and right now - on conservation, renewables, and changing our own lifestyles. We cannot replace cheap oil. But if we focus now, we can learn to make do with what we have and to restructure our lives to accomodate the inevitable future we are facing right now, without it.

Please address this critical national - make that, worldwide - issue. This is the time for you to step up and take the lead! We need your help.

Sincerely, [your name]

Again, I hope you feel this is appropriate to post on your site. If not please delete it with my apologies.


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