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Imagine a World Without OPEC

Public Policy

Imagine a world without OPEC. This is what the sponsors of legislation introduced in both houses of Congress seem to want. Versions of the “No Oil Producing and Exporting Cartels Act,” or the NOPEC bill, are working their way through the Senate and the House of Representatives, and are likely to find much more support from […]

Oil-Rich Iraq Can’t Keep the Lights On

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Temperatures across southern Iraq are so high in the summer months that birds drop dead from the sky due to heat exhaustion. And tap water runs piping hot. So when Iraq’s power supply faltered this month as a heat wave ramped up air-conditioning demand, it ignited an angry question: Why can’t one of the world’s […]

America The Insolvent

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Watching the world these days, I’m experiencing the same fury that rises up from my gut when the driver in the car ahead me is weaving drunkenly, endangering everyone on the road. Fury is a normal and rational human response when threatened with unnecessary harm. Women who are groped (or worse) by a disgusting predator […]

Klanada’s Coming Pipeline War

Public Policy

This week on TFN we give you a peek into what could become Klanada’s Standing Rock and bring you updates from political prisoners in the United Snakes and Greece.

Kunstler: Twelve Ham Sandwiches with Russian Dressing

Public Policy

So, former FBI lawyer Lisa Page declined to testify before a congressional committee because she didn’t feel like it. Apparently we’re now a rule-of-law-optional nation. Until recently, we were merely reality-optional. That was fun, but when officers of the country’s leading law enforcement agency go optional on standard legal procedure, like answering subpoenas, then we’re […]

Exporting America’s Gas to Asia Might Not Be a Done Deal

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The following is the second piece of a multi-part series on the geopolitical implications of the U.S. Shale Revolution. You can read the first article here . North America’s production of natural gas, increasingly derived from fracturing the continent’s extensive shale deposits, has in just a few short years radically scrambled the global gas market. […]

Trump Considers Tapping US Oil Reserve as Prices at the Pump Rise

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The Trump administration is actively considering tapping into the nation’s emergency supply of crude oil as political pressure grows to rein in rising gasoline prices before congressional elections in November, two people familiar with the situation said. No decision has been made to release crude from the 660-million-barrel stockpile, known as the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, […]

Kunstler: Hope and Change Are At Hand

Public Policy

It seems unfair that the earnest polymath Elon Musk should go broke in the electric car business while Kylie Jenner becomes a billionaire at age 20 hawking lip gloss on Snapchat, but that’s how the American Dream rolls these late days of empire. Perhaps the lesson here, for all you MBA wannabes, is that Mr. […]

European Powers Prepare To Ditch Dollar In Trade With Iran

Public Policy

While the White House’s frenzied anti-Iran campaign has entailed unprecedented attempts to twist the arms of the United States’ traditional European allies, the pressure may be backfiring – a reality made all the more clear by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov’s claims that Europe’s three major powers plan to continue trade ties with Iran without […]

Trump Is Right About Russian Energy, And Here’s What He Can Do About It

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One of President Trump’s major points at the July 11, 2018 NATO meeting was that Germany is enriching Russia and making itself beholden to Russia by relying on Russian natural gas for most of its power production. He’s right. But the United States could be in a position to help Europe ween itself off of Russian […]

Behind Nord Stream 2: The Russia-to-Germany gas pipeline that fueled Trump’s anger at NATO

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President Donald Trump may have just made Nord Stream 2 a household name. Ahead of a NATO meeting, the president blasted the German government on Wednesday for backing the new natural gas pipeline link from Russia to Germany. The president’s point is that the United States is shouldering much of the budget for NATO, which […]

Kunstler: When Collapse Goes Kinetic

Public Policy

I suppose many who think about the prospect of economic collapse imagine something like a Death Star implosion that simply obliterates the normal doings of daily life overnight, leaving everybody in a short, nasty, brutish, Hobbesian free-for-all that dumps the survivors in a replay of the Stone Age — without the consolation of golden ages […]

Mexico’s Next President Aims To End Foreign Fuel Imports In Three Years

Public Policy

Mexican President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador will seek to end the country’s massive fuel imports, nearly all from the U.S., during the first three years of his term while also boosting refining at home. The landslide winner of the country’s recent election told reporters on July 7 before attending private meetings with members of his future […]

Kunstler: Summer of Tough Love

Public Policy

The golden Colossus of Trump looms over the national scene this summer like one of Jeff Koons’s giant, shiny, balloon-puppy sculptures — a monumental expression of semiotic vacancy. At the apogee of Trumpdom, everything’s coming up covfefe. The stock market is 5000 points ahead since 1/20/17. Little Rocket Man is America’s bitch. We’re showing those […]

Iran’s Guards threatens to block oil shipments in Gulf

Public Policy

An Iranian Revolutionary Guards commander said on Wednesday that Tehran will block oil shipments through the Strait of Hormuz in the Gulf if the United States bans Iranian oil sales. “If they want to stop Iranian oil exports, we will not allow any oil shipment to pass through the Strait of Hormuz,” Ismail Kowsari was […]

Trump May Tap Strategic Petroleum Reserve To Lower Prices At The Pump

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As Independence Day approaches, AAA reports that a record-breaking 46.9 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more away from home, an increase of more than five percent compared with last year – the highest number since the travel agency began tracking the numbers 18 years ago. One of the biggest scuttlebutts in offices around America […]

Oh Say Can You See?

Public Policy

“Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it.”  ― Mark Twain   As we celebrate the nation’s Independence, a virtual pallor seems to hang over the proceedings like a shitmist. There will be parades, fireworks, cookouts and picnics, and the attendant mindlessness of a hot summer day. There will […]

India Folds Under Pressure, Halts Iranian Oil Imports

Public Policy

In more dour news for Iran, India (the world’s fourth largest oil importer) is planning to cut oil imports from the embattled OPEC member. India’s oil ministry has asked refiners to prepare for a ‘drastic reduction or zero’ imports of Iranian oil from November, Reuters said on Thursday, citing two industry sources. The news comes […]

Kunstler: A Turn for the Worse

Public Policy

  The Democratic Party has steered itself into an exquisitely neurotic predicament at a peculiar moment of history. Senator Bernie Sanders set the tone for the shift to full-throated socialism, and the primary election win of 28-year-old Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in a New York congressional district seems to have ratified it. She promised voters free college […]

The Most Important Geopolitical Meeting This Year

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Relations between the United States and Russia have deteriorated dramatically over the years due to Moscow’s intervention in neighbouring Ukraine and its annexation of Crimea. This change in foreign policy has some analysts talking about a ‘new cold war’. Moscow’s participation and support for President Assad of Syria put Russian interest and soldiers against America’s. […]

Is the decline of coal a national security problem?

Public Policy

As the Trump administration seeks to resuscitate the moribund American coal industry, it has decided to invoke “national security” as the justification for a plan to subsidize coal-fired power plants. Three things are notable about the administration’s proposal. First, invoking “national security” has become a favored tool for getting around existing regulations, precedents and the […]

Zombie policy ideas: anti-immigration/zero population growth edition

Public Policy

Some bad public policy ideas have remarkable staying power, such as “tax cuts pay themselves” or “deficits don’t matter” or “end the Fed.” Then there are those you think are dead but turn out are only “mostly dead.” You can put “protectionism brings prosperity” in that category. Also, surprisingly, “a growing population is a bad […]

Will US-China Rivalry Hasten the Energy Transition?

Public Policy

The energy world changes rapidly. Technology, social and economic patterns, emergence of new sources, and depletion of old ones can occur within a decade. But it is geopolitics that renders the energy world truly unpredictable. Geopolitical risk is new neither to CEOs making decisions about investments in foreign markets nor to energy analysts. But because […]

This Isn’t Your Father’s OPEC Anymore

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Judging from its series of consequential meetings last week in Vienna, OPEC seems to have confirmed that the rumors of its death have been greatly exaggerated. The important thing to recognize is that it also has a new identity that may reshape oil geopolitics for years to come. Commentators have been writing OPEC’s obituary for […]

Why the world doesn’t make new countries anymore.

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On Sept. 25, 2017, Iraqi Kurdistan held its long-awaited referendum on independence. The region had been semi-independent since the end of the first Gulf War but had long sought to become a full-fledged, internationally recognized state. The Kurds had attempted independence, and been thwarted in those attempts, numerous times before, from the aftermath of World […]

The End Of the (Monetary) World As We Know It

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The most significant event in monetary history since 1971 occurred a few weeks ago. An event that threatens to upend the global balance of power, the economy of the world, and your portfolio. To understand the significance of this event and the potential scale of its consequences, a little monetary history is in order. For at […]

Nuclear Power Won’t Survive Without A Government Handout

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Once upon a time, if you were an American who didn’t like nuclear energy, you had to stage sit-ins and marches and chain yourself to various inanimate objects in hopes of closing the nation’s nuclear power plants. Today … all you have to do is sit back and wait. There are 99 nuclear reactors producing […]

Iran’s Rial Hits All-Time Low and Inflation Soars to 147%

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Authored by Steve H. Hanke of the Johns Hopkins University. Follow him on Twitter @Steve_Hanke. The Iranian rial just hit an all-time low (see chart below). The Islamic Republic of Iran remains in the ever-tightening grip of an economic death spiral. The economy is ever-vulnerable because of problems created by the last Shah, and added to […]

Deepwater Horizon led to new protections for US waters. Trump just repealed them.

Deepwater Horizon led to new protections for US waters. Trump just repealed them. thumbnail

The Deepwater Horizon offshore drilling rig exploded on April 20, 2010, killing 11 workers. Gas erupted into a massive fireball, and then the rig gushed 4.9 million barrels of crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico. It soon became the largest and most expensive marine oil spill in history, with an estimated $17.2 billion in […]

Russia’s push to increase oil production came independently

Public Policy

Russia’s push to increase oil production came independently, the country’s oil minister said Saturday during the OPEC summit in Vienna, dismissing the suggestion that public pressure from the U.S. played a role in its decision. OPEC ministers announced a deal on Friday that will increase oil supplies from the producer group, which has been capping […]

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Saudi Arabia … - taking Saudi Armco public - while pushing @Tesla to go private … to me is a clear sign that the “#PeakOil shit” is starting to hit the fan Buckle up. The next 10 years will be a bumpy ride.