The War Drums Beat Louder

The military-industrial complex requires a foe
Wednesday, March 21, 2018, 1:43 PM

Since publishing my recent critique Russia Did It!, with all of Europe now backing the new 'dodgy dossier' episode, and Russia's ambassadors and foreign minister unable to to even have a reasonable dialog, I observe that the possibility of war between the West and Russia sadly continues to increase.  

As in 1911, there are a lot of inexplicably dumb reasons for all of this, so let's pick them apart one by one. » Read more



How To Prepare For War (Updated)

There is much you can (and should!) do
Friday, March 16, 2018, 7:04 PM

Executive Summary

  • How to Prepare for:
    • Trade War
    • Energy War
    • Financial War
    • Cyberwar
    • Grid-down attack
    • Conventional Shooting War
    • Nuclear War

If you have not yet read Russia Did It! available free to all readers, please click here to read it first.

Note to all readers: This is an update of a report that first appeared back in June of 2016. Some of the content is identical, but much has been updated. I was going to write it all fresh, but after re-reading this I find it too relevant to re-write. The original article is here.

As a preamble, I need to note that I do not enjoy or derive any satisfaction from writing about or spending time on figuring out how to dodge the worst impacts of human behavior. War sits right at the top of my ‘BAD IDEAS’ list. War should be the very last resort after all other diplomatic efforts have failed. I am sorry that I have to spend time writing this report, and I am sorry that you have to spend time considering it.

As predicted, sadly, tensions between the west and Russia have only escalated over the past several years, not deescalated. The West has a serious bone to pick with Russia and nobody has yet been able to rationally explain to me what that might be.

I happen to think this is all about bruised neocon egos over Syria, but others think this is just military industrial business being waged in typical fashion.After all, $700 billion defense budgets need justification, don’t they?

But it really doesn’t matter what the explanation is; at this point we have to accept that geopolitical tensions are at a dangerous point and that war with Russia is a distinct possibility. As prudent adults with families to protect we have to do our best and respond appropriately.

The laundry list of things we need to consider doing is extensive.

A ‘war’ between Russia and the US/NATO could range from a very minor skirmish fought over some relatively meaningless items of trade (already underway), to an attack on financial markets, to a conventional shooting war of limited duration, all the way to an all-out nuclear exchange.

Given that wide range of possible outcomes, what can we realistically do to prepare?

Quite a lot as it turns out.

Luckily, most of the preparations are similar to those you should be undertaking anyways, war worries or not, so they won’t cost you much extra in terms of time or money.

What you end up doing depends on which sort of war you consider most likely, where you happen to live, and your means. So let’s consider the range of possibilities here... » Read more


Russia Did It!

Or maybe not...
Friday, March 16, 2018, 7:03 PM

Our lives are now fraught with easily-disproved fantasies, frauds and fictions being pushed to us through the media by institutions with deliberate agendas trying to engineer specific outcomes.

Those of us with a pragmatic mindset and an ability to recall (even quite recent) history, often find ourselves with mouths literally agape at the obvious deceptions being foisted upon what appears to be a terminally-gullible public.

Why do so many continue to blindly trust the same government agencies that have brazenly and repeatedly lied to them over the past recent years? » Read more


Off The Cuff: The High Cost Of 'Free' Trade

Corporate cartels win, the public gets shafted
Thursday, March 15, 2018, 10:55 PM

In this week's Off The Cuff podcast, Chris and Charles Hugh Smith discuss:

  • Funky Market Movement
    • A "bear pendant" in the making?
  • The False Claim Of Free Trade
    • Corporate cartels win, the public gets shafted
  • Media Mendacity
    • Google/Facebook increasingly censoring the content we see
  • Money Velocity Is Slowing
    • And tarrffs will only make things worse

Charles explains how the benefits of "free trade" that we've been sold over the past decades have been lopsided in the extreme.

Click to listen to a sample of this Off the Cuff Podcast or Enroll today to access the full audio and other premium content today.


James Howard Kunstler: The Coming Economy Of "Less"

Society is approaching a breaking point
Sunday, March 11, 2018, 8:20 PM

Author and commentator James Howard Kunstler returns as our podcast guest this week for an update on where we are in The Long Emergency timeline.

In this wide-raging discussion ranging from the pervasiveness of propaganda in today's media to the risk of nuclear war, Kunstler also re-news his warnings of a current secular economic slowdown.

After too many years of market interventions, magical thinking, racketeering, and bleeding the 99% dry, he warns that our culture and economic system will soon reach a snapping point. » Read more


Vladimir Yudin |

Art Berman: Like It Or Not, The Future Remains All About Oil

And competition for it is heating up
Tuesday, January 23, 2018, 1:19 PM

Art Berman, 40-year veteran in the petroleum production industry and respected geological consultant, returns to the podcast this week to talk about oil.

After the price of oil fell from its previous $100+/bbl highs to under $30/bbl in 2015, many declared dead the concerns raised by peak oil theorists. Headlines selling the "shale miracle" have sought to convince us that the US will one day eclipse Saudi Arabia in oil production. In short: cheap, plentiful oil is here to stay.

How likely is this?

Not at all, warns Berman. World demand for oil shows no signs of abating while the outlook for future production looks increasingly scant. And the competition among nations for this "master resource" will be much more intense in future decades than we've been used to. » Read more



2017 Year In Review (Part 2)

When things started getting downright weird
Friday, December 22, 2017, 4:18 PM

Anton Watman/Shutterstock

The Oil Threat

Why a debilitating price spike is 2 or less years away
Friday, November 10, 2017, 7:57 PM

Executive Summary

  • China's imminent peak in oil production
  • The final key player in this story: Russia
  • How to prepare before oil becomes a LOT more expensive
  • What to prepare for? Higher prices (for everything real), lower prices (for everything paper), and more wars...

If you have not yet read Part 1: If The Saudi Arabia Situation Doesn't Worry You, You're Not Paying Attention available free to all readers, please click here to read it first.

China’s Impending Oil Peak

The motivations of China are completely obvious here.  China is eager to forge better relations with any country from which it can import oil and KSA is right at the top of that list.

A truly startling (to me) report from the China University of Petroleum put all of this in proper context and urgency came out earlier this year (2017) which announced that after conducting a wide-ranging study that China faces an imminent peak in oil output (from both conventional and unconventional sources) as early as 2018.

This is really big news.   The implications for global geopolitics, financial stability, and literally anything you consider personally important are huge.

China faces looming energy crisis, warns state-funded study

Oct 5, 2017

Nafeez Ahmed

A new scientific study led by the China University of Petroleum in Beijing, funded by the Chinese government, concludes that China is about to experience a peak in its total oil production as early as next year.

Without finding an alternative source of “new abundant energy resources”, the study warns, the 2018 peak in China’s combined conventional and unconventional oil will undermine continuing economic growth and “challenge the sustainable development of Chinese society.”

This also has major implications for the prospect of a 2018 oil squeeze — as China scales its domestic oil peak, rising demand will impact world oil markets in a way most forecasters aren’t anticipating, contributing to a potential supply squeeze. That could happen in 2018 proper, or in the early years that follow.

There are various scenarios that follow from here  — China could: shift to reducing its massive demand for energy, a tall order in itself given population growth projections and rising consumption; accelerate a renewable energy transition; or militarise the South China Sea for more deepwater oil and gas.

Right now, China appears to be incoherently pursuing all three strategies, with varying rates of success. But one thing is clear — China’s decisions on how it addresses its coming post-peak future will impact regional and global political and energy security for the foreseeable future.


The author of the article, Nafeez Ahmed (who we’ve interviewed before and admire greatly - he's one of the really good ones out there), left out one other option on China’s scenario table, which was to forge stronger relationships with the world’s two key oil exporters – Saudi Arabia and Russia.   That scenario is now a reality and already well underway. 

Here’s the mind-blowing chart that the study produced.  It literally tells the... » Read more



If The Saudi Arabia Situation Doesn't Worry You, You're Not Paying Attention

A key geopolitical axis is swiftly shifting
Friday, November 10, 2017, 7:57 PM

While turbulent during the best of times, gigantic waves of change are now sweeping across the Middle East. The magnitude is such that the impact on the global price of oil, as well as world markets, is likely to be enormous.

A dramatic geo-political realignment by Saudi Arabia is in full swing this month. It’s upending many decades of established strategic relationships among the world's superpowers and, in particular, is throwing the Middle East into turmoil. So much is currently in flux, especially in Saudi Arabia, that nearly anything can happen next. Which is precisely why this volatile situation should command our focused attention at this time. » Read more


WATCH: A World Of Trouble Webinar

FREE to's premium subscribers
Wednesday, September 6, 2017, 2:55 PM

This week's webinar, A World Of Trouble, is free to's enrolled members.

Here is the replay video of the event: » Read more