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Pondering Post-Peak Oil Theory

Pondering Post-Peak Oil Theory thumbnail

Although I would consider myself to be in broad agreement with “Peak Oil” theory, I am less sure about some of the recent approaches to it. The Oil Drum was the go-to site for peak oil analysis, and I am unaware of any comparable replacement. My diagnosis is that Peak Oil theory developed a public relations problem after the 2009 Financial Crisis – many believed that oil prices would keep going on up to $300/barrel (or whatever), and there was a shock when oil prices collapsed. My feeling is that many in the Peak Oil camp over-reacted to that event.

Gail Tverberg was a regular contributor to the Oil Drum. She recently published an article “Deflationary Collapse Ahead?” In it, she argues that low oil somehow indicate that we are near resource limits. This article was a followup from an earlier one published in January, in which she laid out a case for low oil prices.

The logic is that wages are stagnating (due to resource limits?), and so people cannot afford to buy oil. This causes oil prices to fall, and so it can no longer be profitably produced. This means that oil production would fall, which accentuates the problem creates by resource limits.

There is no doubt that demand has been weak globally due to weak wage growth (and fiscal austerity). I fail to see how that reflects resource limitations, instead of a deflationary structural backdrop. To me, this is just an attempt to blame obvious economic problems on a pet theory (resource limitations).

To me, the proper “Peak Oil” attitude is the following: sure, we can produce a surplus of oil now, but how many oil producers are going to go bust in the coming years? It was never reasonable to expect that oil prices would rise in a straight line forever, rather that they would oscillate around an upward trend line. Since policy errors have basically destroyed growth in the developed world, constraints to growth are unlikely to be a major concern. However, one might expect that some new leadership (President Sanders? Trump?) could allow economies to start growing again. At which point, we would crash into those resource limits.

The complaint amongst Peak Oil analysts was that economists did not understand the importance of energy; but this somewhat mirrored by over-simplified views that energy determines all economic and financial outcomes. The crux of Tverberg’s argument is that the “our chances of avoiding [financial] collapse are slim.” Since finance is critical for the functioning of the economy, the collapse of the financial sector would allegedly imply real economic activity would also collapse.

I am highly skeptical about that diagnosis. Firstly, there is limited evidence that the credit system is as over-extended as it was in 2008. Sure, there are pockets of raw stupidity to be found, but it does not seem as generalised as it was then. Secondly, it is actually not that difficult to avoid a financial collapse. We can re-discover the fact that governments with free-floating currencies do not face debt constraints, and bail out the banking system (again). Or governments can cram down bank equity holders and/or those holding subordinated debt. Either way, the banking system remains open for business, possibly with a bank holiday or two. We might get a recession, but the core functioning of the economy would continue.

In summary, I think Peak Oil theory can tell us a lot about the long-term trends in the real economy, but it is not going to be useful for forecasting the cycle.

Postscript: The Grid

Gail Tverberg’s article also throws in scare stories about the electrical grid. When Montréal and the environs got disconnected from the grid for a few weeks in the winter, the situation was pretty bad. However, getting to that state required taking out most of the long-distance transmission lines in the province.

A financial crisis is not going to stop deliveries of fuel to regulated utilities, and so it is not a source of risk to the grid. Although it provides morbid entertainment to ponder what mechanisms will take down the electrical grid (EMP? hackers?), a bank holiday would not make my Top Ten Risks list.

bond economics

48 Comments on "Pondering Post-Peak Oil Theory"

  1. Pops on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 8:16 am 

    I agree with some of this, turns out that the economists were right, you can make oil out of money, for a while.

    The limit we have reached is creditworthiness. In the US, private debt is still right at the evil 150% of GDP mark that historically has signaled a sure recession.

    China is way past it.

    Blame it on the bankers, politicians, us —or whomever, it boils down to peak demand—not the part of demand made up of desire, but the part made up of “ability to pay”.

    Could be when the US elects Trump we’ll show the world how things are done in “business,” we’ll just go bankrupt.

  2. ghung on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 8:24 am 

    “Either way, the banking system remains open for business, possibly with a bank holiday or two</b…

    The vast majority of 21st-century Americans will freak the fuck out. I doubt that the American psyche can deal with the cognitive dissonance caused by not having instant and continuous access to their faux wealth. This will be the point when the slow train wreck leaves the rails.

  3. ghung on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 8:25 am 


  4. rockman on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 8:28 am 

    Be nice if he had been so focused on Gail
    this and Gail that. Last I heard she had not been elected Queen of PO. LOL. Like everyone here she has good thoughts and bullsh*t brain farts. I condsider this cherry picking on hrr no more the a distraction from some of his BS conclusionssill. more simply put: lumping someone elses errors in with ones opinions doesn’t make those BS thoughts any more valid.

  5. Pops on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 8:53 am 

    On the one hand I appreciate Gail’s thought experiments, on the other I realise that like most peoples’, they always end up at the same conclusion. But that’s all right.

    Bank holiday’s might freak people out but the bigger problem will be when banks reopen and start calling in loans. Aren’t the only other options to unwind the bubble for the gov to buy up ever more “troubled assets” or just write everything off and start over?

  6. ennui2 on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 9:11 am 

    Gail wants to predict doom and that colors her analysis. She’s really not the expert people think she is. Otherwise The Oil Drum might still be around.

  7. Adam on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 9:26 am 

    Gail doesn’t WANT to predict doom -she just tells it as she sees it. She has gained her insights from her work as an actuary, so she understands systems and she understands risk. Once cheap energy disappears, we will not be able to support the infrastructure we built while energy was so cheap. Energy may be cheap now, but that is because it’s just what the consumer is willing to pay. Once the price rises to match the cost of its extraction, we are in trouble. Consumers’ spare cash has been whittled away by 2008 and low growth since. Eventually, countries will not be able to repay all the debt that they contracted in times of low-energy-costs. Then, all it needs is a black swan to come along and topple the financial system – even as there is still plenty of oil in the ground. Gail speaks of “peak finance” and “peak demand” and does not believe in the classic peak oil theories.

  8. Don Stewart on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 9:56 am 

    I’ve never posted here before. I am not an expert on anything, am now three quarters of a century old, and have been concerned about Peak Oil since 1964 when I was in the Army with time on my hands and a base library at my disposal. I figured out that oil was a finite resource, and completely failed to foresee events such as the North Slope and the North Sea. I had just graduated from college, where I had heard Admiral Rickover talk about the importance of resources, and the threats to supply. So I bring a long history of amateurish concern for the questions posed in the post above.

    The biggest event in my intellectual history in the last 5 years was a combination of studying Systems Theory and BW Hill’s modeling. From Systems Theory I bring the notion that a complex adaptive system is composed of autonomous sub-systems, which are interconnected into a network so that the larger system can function in the world. For example, mitochondria are the energy engines for the cells. Without the mitochondria, the rest of the body could not function, because there would be no energy to permit the rest of the body to do the work of living. We can conceive that a giraffe might evolve a very long neck, given time and an environment which selects for long necks, but we cannot imagine a giraffe which functions without mitochondria.

    Now, consider the parallels and divergences between engines running on oil and the mitochondria. If the mitochondria begin to lose function, they will produce less energy and the rest of the body will be able to do less work, and things will begin to break down. It may not be apparent to the casual observer that the problem is not the muscles, but the mitochondria. A barrel of crude oil does not lose energy over time, BUT the system which produces the barrel of oil CAN lose function. As one specific, it may begin to cost us more, measured in dollars or energy, to produce, process, and distribute the oil.

    As a second specific, the ‘rest of the body’, the system which turns the energy in the oil into GDP may begin to lose function, so that the productivity of the barrel of oil begins to decline in terms of the GDP it can produce. Here, I would like to bring in Adrian Bejan’s notion of The Constructal Law. Consider a large swampy area of geology which is raised in elevation rather suddenly by geological forces. Bejan shows that there are some predictable results for the drainage system which will eventually manifest as a result of working out the best way to dissipate the new potential energy created by the gain in elevation. But Bejan describes the process as one of evolution…it is not instantaneous. Even a lightning bolt actually happens IN time, not instantly. If we consider a relatively stable economy, such as the US at the time of the civil war, and then consider that the exploitation of fossil fuels lifted the topography and created a lot of potential energy which could be dissipated, we can then observe the evolution of the economy as it adapts to the increased energy. Up until about the year 2000, the world was still adapting to the increased energy availability, but in 2000 things began to change, according to BW Hill’s equations, and the world began to lose the potential energy from oil.

    A quote from Hill:
    ‘In 1970 one barrel of API 37.5° crude delivered 5.3 million BTU to the economy. That was after it was extracted, refined, and distributed. In 2015 that same barrel delivers 2.7 million BTU to the economy. For a long time the world was able to produce more barrels to make up for the decline in per barrel energy delivered. That is no longer happening; so the part of the economy that requires the energy from petroleum (mostly transportation) is being starved, and the world’s economy is slowing down.’

    Adjusting to less potential energy is difficult. First, for many decades it had been true that exploiting more fossil fuels and particularly more oil paid large dividends in terms of GDP. Humans became habituated to the ‘laws of economics’ which had worked for decades (with the notable exception of the Depression), and attempted to keep things going by increasing debt. We now see the strains that the increase in debt is causing, but most people fail to look through the debt to the root cause of the deterioration in the quality of the oil we are extracting and burning.

    Second, contributing to the difficulty of adjusting, is the fact that we have built an enormous infrastructure which is dependent on the high quality oil. We have no ready substitute for the oil, and so doing the work to build a new infrastructure which functions with much less oil is difficult or impossible.

    We now have enough background information to make some informed speculations about the price of oil as its quality declines. The Economics 101 and Wall Street answer is that as the supply declines, the price must increase. However, if we look at it from the perspective of a Complex System, we are more likely to conclude that the total system will begin to malfunction as the quality and quantity of a critical component (analogous to mitochondria) begin to decline. Now the Central Banks may have the power to create a nominal price that is raised by rampant inflation, but the more important effect may well be that the total system fails and the components attempt to reassemble themselves into a lower energy dissipation system. We won’t go back to the pre-Civil War system, but the new system will rhyme with it….barring some new technology similar in impact to the exploitation of fossil fuels. Whether oil will play any very important role in such a low dissipation system doesn’t permit any definitive answer, because complex systems are notoriously difficult to predict. However, we can probably safely assume that the massive oil extraction and processing system and the economy which burns oil to do its work will not survive. The economy, as it presently exists, probably does not have the capability of paying enough money to keep the present oil based system functioning.

    Don Stewart

  9. steve on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 9:58 am 

    I think you have to take anything from anybody you read with a grain of salt….It is very hard if not impossible to predict the future….show me someone who has and gotten it all right…Some people have killed themselves partly do the belief in Gail and the Automatic Earths viewpoints and that is unfortunate…Her analysis is important to see the general direction of where we are heading….

    I think too much doom and gloom can make Jack a dull boy…it is important to always be looking around and not always trying to look for the Gloom like Apeman, who shit…must not have to work….I don’t know where some of the people on here find the time!

  10. BobInget on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 10:04 am 

    What was the oil priced at last week?
    Brent and WTI are moving in tandem.
    This says to me at least, oil’s problems are more geopolitical then geological.

    Neither supply or demand has been at issue for some time.

    Inflation in Brazil, 14.4% a 12 year high.
    (all that oil wealth didn’t pan)

    The inflation rate in Iraq was recorded at 2.20 percent in June of 2015. Inflation Rate in Iraq averaged 13.51 percent from 2005 until 2015, reaching an all time high of 76.55 percent in August of 2006 and a record low of -6.37 percent in October of 2009. Inflation Rate in Iraq is reported by the Central Bank of Iraq.

    Core Inflation Rate in Nigeria increased 8.80 percent in July of 2015 over the same month in the previous year. Core Inflation Rate in Nigeria averaged 9.41 percent from 2007 until 2015, reaching an all time high of 19.28 percent in January of 2007 and a record low of 0.49 percent in March of 2008. Core Inflation Rate in Nigeria is reported by the National Bureau of Statistics, Nigeria.

    The inflation rate in Russia was recorded at 15.60 percent in July of 2015. Inflation Rate in Russia averaged 140.03 percent from 1991 until 2015, reaching an all time high of 2333.30 percent in December of 1992 and a record low of 3.60 percent in April of 2012. Inflation Rate in Russia is reported by the Federal State Statistics Service.

    Venezuela’s inflation has reached its highest level since the country started measuring the indicator over 60 years ago, according to calculations by private economists who are seeking to make up for a lack of official figures on prices for this year.

    Inflation is evident in the streets, however, as consumers struggle with wads of near-worthless bills, the largest of which can no longer even buy a chocolate bar.

    Prices rose 108 percent in the 12 months ending in May, according to the average of estimates by nine analysts consulted by Reuters, topping the 103 percent rate of 1996 that followed an economic shock package

    Find a single oil exporting state in deflation, Please, let Gail know.

    As it stands, I wouldn’t hire Gail to do my taxes.

  11. apneaman on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 10:11 am 

    steve who has killed themselves partly do the belief in Gail and the Automatic Earths viewpoints? What are their names?

  12. ghung on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 10:15 am 

    Hi Don. Welcome. In short, if it takes more energy to catch a rabbit than you get from eating the rabbit, eventually you’ll starve, if rabbits are your primary source of calories.

  13. ghung on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 10:28 am 

    Jeez, Bob, how is inflation calculated? Where? Further, deflation in commodity prices doesn’t necessarily translate into overall deflation in the short-term. Just sayin’.

    Anyway, for a different view on real inflation/deflation as it relates to costs-of-living in the US, see-

    The Chapwood Index

    “The Chapwood Index reflects the true cost-of-living increase in America. Updated and released twice a year, it reports the unadjusted actual cost and price fluctuation of the top 500 items on which Americans spend their after-tax dollars in the 50 largest cities in the nation.

    It exposes why middle-class Americans — salaried workers who are given routine pay hikes and retirees who depend on annual increases in their corporate pension and Social Security payments — can’t maintain their standard of living. Plainly and simply, the Index shows that their income can’t keep up with their expenses, and it explains why they increasingly have to turn to the government for entitlements to bail them out.”

    As for Gail doing your taxes, I wouldn’t hire an Actuary to do that either.

  14. steve on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 10:32 am 

    Apeman I think one guys name was Cory….maybe you can google it and see the comments from his sister…

  15. joke on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 10:45 am 

    I go for the bumpy plateau theory over decades myself, ending at a slow decline caused by infrastructure decay caused by lack of investment due to loss of economic productivity and damage caused by climate change. Exactly how Rome went down.
    Lots of leaders rising, promising everything and delivering little and each time faith in the system declines a little until we put our faith in mullahs and caliphs to lead us to prosperity, but by then it will be all over.
    Then again, they could develop new energy sources, but then they would have to stop using oil for transport and keep it only for food production until it runs out at some later future. Who knows.

  16. BobInget on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 10:49 am 

    Ghung, The obvious tactic might be inventing a better rabbit trap.

    I get your analogy though.

    In the real world. Rabbits have to eat too.

    WW/2 The USAF had a particular survival lecture it gave air crews. “If you survive a crash landing in the jungle, watch what monkeys eat.
    When you’ve made careful notes, eat the monkey”.

    During this money drought Canadian and US oil companies strategized endlessly to save money on drilling and just about everything else including pipe and land contracts. IOWS,
    they are eating monkeys.

    This recent rise in oil prices may not be just a so called ‘relief rally’ or short covering.
    When oil passes $60, holds there for more then a month, then continues higher, rehiring will commence and most oil companies will become profitable under $100 crude where that was not possible before,

    Neither the US or Canada is dependent on oil revenue. Canada’s currency will strengthen as
    balance of payments for imported oil go away.

  17. joke on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 10:59 am 

    Prices will rise, but I hope the US has a buyer. Saudi has to lock in China etc to 2yr contracts, when they do that, expect them to cash in on the futures, that’s the one to watch, so while we are all thinking about low demand, OPEC is cashing in and buying new military hardware to bomb peasants with. They don’t care about Bakken or tight oil, as long as it’s not eating their lunch.

  18. BobInget on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 11:07 am 

    ghung, OK ,I get it, salaries aren’t keeping up with inflation. You must admit, Administration moves to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 has been shot down at every turn. Cities and states are raising minimum wages to $15. with no dire.

    Higher wages are on the way, believe me.

    If anyone has trouble identifying inflation, go food shopping.

  19. BobInget on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 11:18 am 

    Joke is confusing KSA’s ongoing war expenses
    with replacement hardware.

    Not satisfied with bringing on the deaths of millions of Yemeni, losing Yemen to Al Qaeda,
    Saudis doubled down, Allied with Israel to attack Iran. IOWS formed an Islamic, circular firing squad.

    Millions of Muslims descend on Holy sites next month. What could go wrong?

  20. apneaman on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 11:38 am 

    No steve, you google it. You made the assertion. A very serious assertion as a matter of fact. Could even call it slanderous. Prove it or shut up. Some guys sister said is evidence of nothing. My sister believes our dead father was communicating with her because she woke up in the middle of the night and his picture was on her screen saver even though I set her screen to turn off after ten minutes idle. I did not have the heart to tell her that I also set her windows updates for 3am and once and awhile a reboot is required. I did not tell her because she wants to believe – maybe even needs to. My mom wanted to sue the hospital even though my Dad was in there because of a combination of his age, genetics and a life of over indulgence of food and alcohol plus he smoked cigarettes all but the last ten years of his life. I never said anything to her either. Looking to blame others and looking to make sense when a loved one dies is normal in apes, but in our decadent entitlement society it is totally out of hand. No one is responsible for anything anymore and “shit happens” no longer applies in our decadent hyper entitlement society.

  21. Jerry McManus on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 12:00 pm 

    As I understand it Gail has mostly come around to the same conclusions that were arrived at by the Limits to Growth report, I think she even says as much towards the end of her recent post.

    She likes to put more emphasis on the dysfunction of the financial system as causation rather than correlation, but all in all I find she does a fine job of thinking in terms of the system as a whole. Which, by the way, we desperately need more of.

    Anyway, the basic dynamic is not hard to understand. Energy makes everything else possible, As our appetite for our fossil sunlight lifeblood becomes ever more costly (and no I’m not talking about the price in worthless dollars) then those costs, not just to our economy but to the entire planet, will eventually suck the life out of us.

  22. steve on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 12:08 pm 

    here you go apeman…so shut the f*** up!! And go back to your same old shit……


  23. apneaman on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 12:18 pm 

    What does linking to a massive list of TAE articles supposed to prove? Rather vague wouldn’t you say?

    Here you go steve, here is the evidence to support everything I have asserted or ever will.

    sorry I could not be more specific.

  24. penury on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 12:18 pm 

    First Peak Oil is not a theory. The date is a theory, but actually just like how many angels can dance on the head of a pin, it is all just good exercise.

  25. steve on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 12:25 pm

    try this and scroll down to the comment section…unlike you apeman I do not have and entitlement white man lifestyle of playing on the computer 24/7…so sorry to inconvenience you with a few more key strokes……

  26. BobInget on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 12:39 pm 

    Americans, lured by promises of $20 oil, are driving through a long ambush canyon.

    In fact, just the other day readers here were told
    oil most certainly will go lower because folks are driving more. I never understood this reasoning
    but because smart people write such stuff and gets repeated, it must be true.
    U.S. consumer spending rose in July as households stepped up automobile purchases, offering further evidence of strength in the economy that keeps the door open to a Federal Reserve interest rate hike this year.

    While other data on Friday showed consumer sentiment dipped in August, likely as households fretted over a recent stock market sell-off, confidence remained at levels consistent with solid consumer spending growth.

    The Commerce Department said consumer spending, which accounts for more than two-thirds of U.S. economic activity, increased 0.3 percent last month after a similar gain in June.

    (Translated) we buy more stuff when we feel a
    ‘wealth effect’.

    As for this investor, he knows everything could reverse come Monday if Saudi Arabia decides to stay the old course.

    He’s Not picking up a Tesla this year.

  27. ghung on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 12:42 pm 

    Gosh, Steve; as I recall, Cory wasn’t working with a full deck from the get-go, as his sister mentioned:

    “While it is clear to me and the rest of the family that Cory had problems, I am struck as to what could have possibly been said here so as to be so influential to him.”

    Nicole’s response:

    “Hello Ann,

    I am very sorry for your loss. The best record of what was said the last time (as far as I remember) that Cory posted here is to be found at the link provided by the poster above ( I am sure there were many previous postings, but those would be unsearchable since we changed software platforms for our site (blogger to joomla to wordpress) over the years.

    Cory seemed very disturbed when I interacted with him. I remember him insisting at one point that we repudiate our entire analysis because he had lost money in the short term. I think he acted on one part of the message we share here, while not considering the rest of the picture. What we explain here is very complicated, but we are always happy to talk people through that picture if they ask. We don’t tell anyone what to do, we simply provide information and analysis that gives people the tools they need to make their own decisions….”

    Setting that aside, are you actually suggesting that those of us who see that a severe decline in industrial civilization is underway actually refrain from providing information to that effect? Just on the off chance that some poor depressed soul somewhere who reads it may decide (finally) to off him/her self? Are you suggesting that checking one’s self out of this madness isn’t a viable personal response?

    Maybe you’re the kind of guy that insists that everything is OK while knowing good and well there’s some big bad shit coming down. If so, who’s the dishonest one here? Who’s deluded? We won’t solve anything because there’s a cultural aversion to any real situational awareness.

    Which is more damaging to individuals and societies? Cold, hard reality or continuing our meme of mass delusion? Ask your grandkids. The stories we tell ourselves AREN’T WORKING. Time for some real stories, as hard as they may be to hear, even if those stories are imperfect, and the delivery doesn’t make the Corys of the world feel good.

  28. BobInget on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 12:50 pm 

    Just checked prices. Shorts are battling it out with reality again.

    When ever this happens I think of my mentor
    Bill always says; “oil futures markets are out to screw everyone”

    My personal mantra; “I guess we won’t be needing oil anymore”.

  29. apneaman on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 1:28 pm 

    Well maybe you should have paid more attention in school and also learned how be more self sufficient and frugal and save and invest your money. Some folks made the best of their white entitlement. Some folks comment while at work, so they are getting paid while they play. Some of us work from home. Some are retired. Some are disabled. Some have mobile devices. Many can read think and type fast and are on and off the computer dozens of times a day. Lots of variety in the world steve.

    P.S. I’m not clicking on your link and scrolling through a bunch of comments to find your supposed evidence.

    Do you not know what quotation marks are for? You seem to be able to copy and paste a link, so why not the quote? They were supposed to have taught you all this in elementary school. You need to learn the basics if you want to play the game steve. Too bad there is not some kind of massive, easily accessible, resource library where one can go to learn the what the education system and one’s parents failed to teach them.

    “This handout will provide a broad overview of gathering and using evidence. It will help you decide what counts as evidence, put evidence to work in your writing, and determine whether you have enough evidence. It will also offer links to additional resources.”

  30. apneaman on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 1:30 pm 

    See steve what ghung just did?

  31. Boat on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 1:34 pm 

    I have given plenty of evidence. Oil production up, consumption up, spending up. Prices down. And one big ass glut.

  32. Boat on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 1:36 pm 

    When will peak oil hit? Only time will tell.

  33. ghung on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 1:49 pm 

    Yeah, Boat, we’ll let you know the very second it happens…

  34. BobInget on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 1:57 pm 

    Saudi, Tanks a lot. Next time you invade a desert nation, bring lots of water.

  35. rockman on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 6:34 pm 

    ghung – It’s still anazinc isn’t it that some continue to argue that the EFFECTS of PO have materialiized years ago. Such as the high and low oil price seesaw we’ve been on. Likewise with oil poduction rates. OTOH as long as they stayed focused on some unimportant date they just keep stumbling along with that silly grin on their face. LOL

  36. steve on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 7:32 pm 

    Ghung…sanity is a relative thing….if I told young Ghung maybe 20 years ago that he would be spending all of his free time…countless hours on a website with repetitive arguing the nuance of how all hope is lost comments to people he does not know and will never know… well then I think younger Ghung would think the older Ghung had lost his marbles!!!

  37. Davy on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 8:04 pm 

    Steve, we are just a bunch of birds in a tree chirping and squawking trying to find the best perch. Funny. I have to save this Davy today is much like earlier Davy. I have always been a deep thinker. I wish then what I have now. Much of my life I have been around people unable are unwilling to doom. I doomed when doom was not cool. People always saw me as a freak. Doomers are freaks per Ape Man. Sound wisdom Ape.

  38. Apneaman on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 8:16 pm 

    Hey steve what about the other 40,000 suicides a year in the US? What topic specific web site or blog is to blame for them?

    R.I.P. Jimmy

    “Jimmy always got so depressed after watching all those crazy cat videos over on I think the last one of Skooky, the European Shorthair, spraining his ankle chasing the laser dot was just too much…..pushed him over the edge.”

    Somebody needs to be held accountable!

  39. Apneaman on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 8:23 pm 

    steve is that your thing? Going to blogs and counting the amount of comments each and every poster makes, making it down and then writing what you consider some insightful and scathing critique on how much time they are wasting? Sounds time consuming.

  40. idontknowmyself on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 8:24 pm 

    A lot of young people commenting on this blog are mentally unstable and have no life and hobbies other then trying to win a online argument with words.

  41. bug on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 9:04 pm 

    Yes idontknowmyself I agree, but the comments are somewhat fun to read and some post some rather good info. All in all it is like reading a good 3 Stooges episode.

  42. Boat on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 9:24 pm 

    It’s just natural to compete with words. As I always say, there are billions that came before us and billions that will come after us and nobody has or will have any better opinion than now.

  43. ghung on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 9:25 pm 

    Steve: “…if I told young Ghung maybe 20 years ago that he would be spending all of his free time…countless hours on a website with repetitive arguing the nuance of how all hope is lost comments to people he does not know and will never know… well then I think younger Ghung would think the older Ghung had lost his marbles!!!”

    Actually, this older Ghung is doing exactly what the younger Ghung decided he needed to do, and succeeding more than he expected. After travelling extensively, often through failing societies and states, one of us decided he wanted to be more than undeveloped, unevolved, barely conscious pond scum, totally convinced of his own superiority as he scurried about life burning shit, doing what his peers and society expected.

    Not sure when a disdain for my specie’s collective behavior became a primary driver of my own behavior, but it was at a very young age. Took me a while to get in the grove, but I’m unapologetic for where I am on the sapience spectrum.

    …also not sure WTF the rest of you are doing. See? At least I admit I don’t know everything…

  44. Davy on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 9:47 pm 

    Ident, we live in an insane world if you are adapted to it you are insane yourself. We come on this site and vent our frustrations and do some jousting. I find that far superior to being a couch potato tube zombie or a video game junkie.

    Yes I agree some here have mental issues and don’t contribute much but that goes with the territory of a Wild West type board. Once you get a moderator the dynamics changes. Idiots need attention but they usually don’t last long here. Most are gone after a few weeks.

  45. apneaman on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 10:08 pm 

    Boat, it reminds me of being on the job site or at hockey practice with a bunch of testosterone apes yaking away about shit and sprinkled with taking verbal shots at each other. Many enjoy it and get a laugh out of some of the more clever put downs or world class temper tantrums. I think it’s hilarious when guys get so mad they threaten to kick someone’s ass while anonymous on on the internet a thousand miles away. One needs a good dose of the absurd when dooming. You hang in there boat, we’ll get you straightened out eventually.

  46. apneaman on Fri, 28th Aug 2015 10:12 pm 

    ghung, changing was probably necessary to save your sanity. What you said reminded me of this quote.

    “It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society.” – Jiddu Krishnamurti

  47. Kenz300 on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 3:42 pm 

    Climate Change and endless population growth will continue to make Water shortages worse……..

    Can’t provide enough water for the current population…… wait and the population will get even bigger and require more water…….

  48. Mike Lynch on Fri, 16th Oct 2015 9:52 am 

    I can give you a better picture, if you want. (Also, one with horns.)

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