Daily Digest

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Daily Digest 11/24 - A Grave Climate Warning, The Time to Prepare For the Next Financial Crisis is Now

Saturday, November 24, 2018, 12:37 PM

Economy

Sales Reps May Be Wearing Out Their Welcome In The Operating Room (Thomas R.)

The device reps contend they observe surgeries because they are experts on particular devices and their accompanying toolkits, which often include hundreds of wrenches, screws and other hardware to aid in installation.

Sometimes, the device reps have observed more surgeries with a particular device than any one surgeon. That depth of experience can be helpful, the reps say, especially with the newest device model or upgrade.

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard eviscerates Trump as 'Saudi Arabia's bitch' (Adam)

The tweet was in apparent reference to Trump's exclamation point-filled formal presidential statement Tuesday that his administration would take no actions against Saudi Arabia's rulers regarding the Khashoggi killing — despite NBC News and other reports last week that the CIA concluded that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman ordered Khashoggi's killing.

The Time to Prepare For the Next Financial Crisis is NOW (Thomas R.)

Looking at those charts, it was easy to single out the Fed as the culprit, since the Fed’s hawkishness had ignited the $USD which in turn put pressure on commodities.

However, what’s happening now is much bigger than just the Fed. Between June and August, two of the stock markets that are most closely aligned with global trade (South Korean and Germany) topped.

Gap looking to close hundreds of stores at malls 'quickly and aggressively' (Thomas R.)

"There are hundreds of other stores that likely don't fit our vision for the future of Gap brand specialty store, whether in terms of profitability, customer experience, traffic trends," CEO Art Peck said Tuesday evening during a call with analysts. "The range from the very best to the very worst stores is extremely broad."

Ikea to slash 7,500 jobs, focus on smaller stores as online competition heats up (Sparky1)

In Wednesday’s statement, Lars Petersson, Ikea’s manager for U.S. retail operations, said the company wants to “create the Ikea of the future by ... being more accessible and fully embracing technology.”

Ikea has known for some time that it needed to up its online game and be less dependent on its behemoth bricks-and-mortar stores.

This Black Friday, Amazon employees across Europe are protesting ‘inhuman’ working conditions (jdargis)

“The conditions our members at Amazon are working under are frankly inhuman,” said Tim Roache, general secretary of GMB, in a statement on the organization’s website. “They are breaking bones, being knocked unconscious and being taken away in ambulances.”

Why it may be harder to find the perfect Christmas tree (Thomas R.)

The yuletide market imbalance was created a decade ago when a glut of Christmas trees and the Great Recession combined to drive many growers out of business. Now the supply is tight and it takes eight to 10 years — the time needed to grow a Christmas tree — to boost the supply.

IMF Reveals That Cryptocurrency Is The New World Order End Game (thc0655)

The “currency” was backed by nothing tangible (and no, math is not a tangible resource). Anyone could create a cryptocurrency out of thin air that had attributes identical to bitcoin, therefore there was no intrinsic value to the technology and nothing stopping the creation of thousands of similar currency systems, eventually making bitcoin worthless. The scarcity argument for crypto was fraudulent. And, in the event of a grid down or an internet lock-down scenario (as has occurred in the past in nations under crisis), crypto was useless because the blockchain ledger was no longer accessible.

Gold Is Cheap. Inflation Is Coming. You Do the Math (Adam)

“Gold is rare, and it’s hard to rapidly increase the supply of it,” says Keith Trauner, co-portfolio manager of the GoodHaven (ticker: GOODX) mutual fund, which holds Barrick Gold (ABX), a leading mining company. “People have historically viewed it as a hedge against government depreciation of local currency.”

Holiday Doings and Undoings (thc0655)

Our President has taken full credit for the bubblicious markets, of course, and will be Hooverized as they gurgle around the drain. Given his chimerical personality, he may try to put on an FDR mask — perhaps even sit in a wheelchair — and try a few grand-scale policy tricks to escape the vortex. But the net effect will surely be to make matters worse — for instance, if he can hector the Federal Reserve to buy every bond that isn’t nailed to some deadly derivative booby-trap. But then he’ll only succeed in crashing the dollar. Remember, there are two main ways you can go broke: You can run out of money; or you can have plenty of worthless money.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Won't Be the One to Finally Make Socialism Work (thc0655)

When one steps back and takes a broader look at the Ocasio-Cortez phenomenon – the belief that a political rookie somehow can transform socialism, a system known for failure and repression, into paradise by just her sheer force of presence – one must better understand the current intellectual landscape that progressives have created. We are seeing a huge clash of visions and worldviews, not to mention a difference in the interpretation of what we see (or don’t see) in front of us.

Blockchain smart contracts are finally good for something in the real world (Sparky1)

The idea is that by working together, the two systems can allow blockchain-based services to interact with real-world events with a greater degree of trust than is possible from today’s oracle services. For example, if your flight is canceled but you bought flight insurance, a smart contract might instantaneously pay you after getting an update from a trusted source of flight times.

Oh that it should come to this (Jesper A.)

We can in the light of Anderson´s plea to watch our backs see what Bell is up to; he is (inside science) looking for mismatches in Western attitudes and culture — and much like Robert Heilbroner he is a closet moralist. We need prophets because they simplify, they become ICONS or focus-points. Think about Shakespeare, it is not so much what he says… Think about McLuhan who applies the REnaissance to revive the modern — think about how this attempt seems idiotic, and yet we read his insights with despair (as Wolfe shows).

Media Literacy Might be Key to Planetary Survival (Doug)

Does education make you more able to detect a fake headline? Yes. College grads sussed it out at a higher rate (68 percent) than those with less than a college degree (57 percent).

Age and income? Yes, people aged 65 and up were somewhat less likely to identify the fake headline than those 18 to 64 (60 percent vs. 66 percent). And those making over $150K were better at it than those making less than $30K (71 percent vs. 54 percent).

Oil meltdown deepens as crude crashes below $51 (Thomas R.)

Oil bulls are hoping OPEC and Russia come to the rescue by announcing steep production cuts at a meeting next month in Vienna. However, President Donald Trump is pressuring Saudi Arabia and OPEC not to reduce output despite the crash in prices. Traders are worried Trump's recent praise for Saudi Arabia signals the Saudis won't back a significant production cut.

The Great Oil Crash of 2018: What's really happening (Thomas R.)

Under pressure from Trump, Saudi Arabia ramped up production to an all-time high. That's critical because Saudi Arabia is like the central bank of oil. It's the world's largest exporter and the only country with the ability to significantly ramp up output. Russia and the United States also accelerated production.

The limits of renewable energy and the case for degrowth (John J.)

Between 1990 and 2015, the share of fossil fuels in the global energy mix (including nuclear energy in this particular calculation based on data from the BP Statistical Review) declined from 88 per cent to 86 per cent — a marginal decrease of 1 per cent per decade. And more recently, in spite of the significant growth of renewables, in actual quantities, the share of petroleum and gas increased twice as much as renewable electricity between 2011 and 2016.

The latest battle against sea level rise? Raising one mile of road (Michael W.)

“It is costly to raise roads,” said county spokeswoman Cammy Clark. “In addition to the design and permitting fees, the construction for the pilot project is estimated to run about $3.5 million.”

The commission made the decision for the “Sea Level Rise Pilot Project” at its monthly meeting in Key West and it only addresses a fraction of the work needed, Clark said.

Dimming the sun: The answer to global warming? (Sparky1)

"We make no judgment about the desirability of SAI," the report states. "We simply show that a hypothetical deployment program commencing 15 years hence, while both highly uncertain and ambitious, would indeed be technically possible from an engineering perspective. It would also be remarkably inexpensive."

A Grave Climate Warning, Buried on Black Friday (Sparky1)

The report is a huge achievement for American science. It represents cumulative decades of work from more than 300 authors. Since 2015, scientists from across the U.S. government, state universities, and businesses have read thousands of studies, summarizing and collating them into this document. By law, a National Climate Assessment like this must be published every four years.

Gold & Silver

Click to read the PM Daily Market Commentary: 11/21/18

Provided daily by the Peak Prosperity Gold & Silver Group

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

DennisC's picture
DennisC
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Mar 19 2011
Posts: 342
More Good News

I saw this article linked on ZH a few days ago.  There was some discussion here previously regarding EROI of this oil source.  I found these points interesting particularly given some of the natural gas storage information posted recently:

Many “energy experts” have said that a Manhattan tar sands project could prevent oil decline in the future. But that’s not likely. Here are a few reasons why:

  1. Reaching 5 Mb/d will get increasingly (energy) expensive, because there’s only enough natural gas to mine 29% of tar sands (and limited water as well). Using the energy of the tar sand bitumen itself would greatly reduce the amount that could be produced and dramatically increase the cost and energy to mine it.
  2. Since there isn’t enough natural gas, many hope that nuclear reactors will replace natural gas. That would take a lot of time. Kjell Aleklett estimates it would take at least 7 years before a candu nuclear reactor could be built, and the Canadian Parliament estimates it would take 20 nuclear reactors to replace natural gas as a fuel source.
  3. Mined oil sands have been estimated to have an energy returned on invested of EROI of 5.5–6 for mined tar sands (perhaps 10% of the 170 billion barrels), with in situ processing much lower at 3.5–4 (Brandt 2013). Right now, 90% of the reserves being developed are via higher-EROI mining, yet 80% of remaining oil sands reserves are in situ, so the remaining reserves will be much less profitable.
  4. Counting on tar sands to replace declining conventional oil, with an EROI as high as 30 will be hard to accomplish, especially if it turns out to be the case that an EROI of 7 to 14 is required to maintain civilization as we know it (Lambert et al. 2014; Murphy 2011; Mearns 2008; Weissbach et al. 2013)

https://srsroccoreport.com/tar-sands-operations-go-from-bad-to-worse-now...

 

thc0655's picture
thc0655
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 27 2010
Posts: 1718
China’s bike sharing disaster

Here’s a capitalist solution the Chinese may not have thought of. When shared bicycles are impounded by the government for violations of law or policies, instead of warehousing them, hold a monthly auction open to everybody. Looks like there are so many that even teens and low wage workers could afford to buy one at low auction prices. (It looks to me that there SO MANY impounded bikes that in the beginning they could be bought for the yuan equivalent of $1.00 - $2.00.) Then they would OWN a bike and no longer need to rent them. I presume the new owners would then take better care of them instead of just leaving them laying around, which in turn would relieve the cities’ bicycle headache to a significant extent. Of course I assume this whole problem could be prevented or reduced if the bike companies couldn’t get nearly free money in the form of debt to manufacture and market the bikes.

This is basically what we do in Philly with impounded vehicles, including motorcycles and ATVs. If the owner doesn’t come in person to pay their fines and pick up their impounded vehicle within 30 days it is sold at a public auction. The impound lots gradually fill up for 30 days but after the auction they’re empty again. Some good deals can be had and the problem is kept to a manageable size.

cmartenson's picture
cmartenson
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Jun 7 2007
Posts: 5979
Bitcoin Breaks into the $3k range!

Well, the selling has picked up again.  Not sure when the capitulation moment comes...but this is all a very orderly decline so far...

thatchmo's picture
thatchmo
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Dec 14 2008
Posts: 476
'bout Gabbard

I heard a report on NPR today, (yeah, yeah, I know....,) that was commenting on the future Speaker of the House, and how Pelosi is not widely supported by her party.  The commentator then proceeded to rattle off a bunch of new, young Congress critters that seemed to have some.....cred.  Tulsi Gabbard was not among them....I know she has some interesting personal history (not a supporter of the 2nd Amendment as far as I can tell) that might be...interesting...but it would seem she might see Speaker as a step toward CIC....Aloha, Steve.

reflector's picture
reflector
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 20 2011
Posts: 279
IEA: peak oil shortages around the corner

https://cleantechnica.com/2018/11/22/peak-oil-drastic-oil-shortages-imminent-says-iea/

Production to start dropping off sharply before 2020?

crazy to think about - it will change every aspect of our lives.

ive long thought peak oil was coming but expected it was further off, like 2030.

sand_puppy's picture
sand_puppy
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 13 2011
Posts: 2041
IEA Peak Oil graphs

The article linked above by reflector  concludes several things that Chris and Adam have been talking about for many years:

1.  Low prices make current exploration for new oil and gas reserves unprofitable.

2.  New High EROI oil fields are hard to find as the good and easy stuff has been used already.

3.  Oil shortages and HIGH OIL PRICES will come from this.

 

It is clear to see that Peak Oil will be hit well before 2020, while demand keeps on rising, unless the world’s Oil Majors and State Owned Oil Companies would massively invest in new exploration, according to the IEA.

This summary article is short and to the point, a summary of a larger IEA report.  Here are the main two graphs

 

And the result is a near future fall in the availability of oil.   (This conclusion and graph was burried in the report on page 159, behind a paywall, almost as if someone were trying to de-emphasize it.....)

 

HappyCamper's picture
HappyCamper
Status: Bronze Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 16 2018
Posts: 37
The Three E's

There are many sources that suggest the human race will witness a decline in oil production and consumption. The argument is how this decline will occur and what will initiate it. Human population growth will continue to be a significant factor and there is no "quick fix" imho. That is, if one ignores the risk of EMP's, nuclear war, and pandemics. And Mother Nature may surprise us all with a solution that many of us won't expect or see coming.

 

 

 

 

David Allan's picture
David Allan
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Nov 15 2009
Posts: 109
Peak Oil

Thankyou Reflector and sand puppy for that information. Its absolutely fascinating to see the Production graph which was part of the 2018 report. The IEA is indicating we're now at or just past peak oil. And the expected rate of decline is rather steep.

The commentator in Reflectors link misses a couple of key implications. He says

'For the climate, this is excellent news, because the adoption of electric vehicles and clean transport in general will get a major boost and surely blow all current predictions out of the water.'

However as Chris has said numerous times the energy required to make this transition is simply not going to be there.

Also related to his expectation of a technological future the author states

'Oil Majors ... sitting on oil that will become very valuable even though the amount of oil they will extract will decline significantly.'

Yes it will likely become valuable for a time but the author hasn't grasped that our society is structured and patterned on growth. And that the complex infrastructure needed to distribute and sell the oil is likely to crumble away as the energy needed to support it dwindles away. So, beyond a tipping point,  the actual rate of decline is likely to be much steeper than the graph suggests.

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