Peak Oil is You

Donate Bitcoins ;-) or Paypal :-)

Page added on August 29, 2015

Bookmark and Share

America is the problem

America is the problem thumbnail

Any more trading for butter? Closed.

It was the mid 90s, but the CME floor was vibrant. There was a recent scandal where the FBI found nearly nothing by wearing wires and trading horribly in the currency pits. They were trying to bust independent traders by showing how they were manipulating the markets. It seemed too good to be true that a bunch of yahoos could stand around a pit trading against the best currency in the world and making other countries sweat about what the final price of the day was to measure their foreign reserves. Big Guv had it all wrong.

Those traders were only following the lead of whatever policy the United States was doling out. Sure Nixon would have been proud that somewhere up there was someone who knew it was another’s fault. Well as oil prices are crashing here, we have to stop blaming everyone else and look right back at our American Government. It’s their world, we’re just living in it.

As China continues to crumble, we chive on. Oil production in the United States is still happily above 9.3mm b/d. Every producer that I have been talking to has been trying to play along and talk about how bad things are. Oh yes, there are job cuts, but look at those closely and you’ll notice that they are everything from management to sales to technical engineers. Mostly international. There’s labor cuts, but those are slashed with redundancy in mind. Redundancy made possible by increasing efficiency through technology.

Has there been profit target misses? Sure, but that’s because all of the oil companies were budgeting $60 against the hedges that they put on last year. There’s not a real loss here in the industry, people are still making money. A lot of money. The big problem comes from the fact that it’s everyone here in the United States that’s making money. The rest of the world is pulling a Tiger Woods. They were great once, ran out of control and haven’t been able to get back on track since.

So America is trying hard to blame someone else. We talk about the crash in China, the bailout of Greece or the oversupply of OPEC. All along it’s America and our policy that drives it all down. We’re the free market that took away a slower and more methodical trading system with open outcry. We moved forward and now allow HFT to rule the markets. We are producing more crude because we can’t find fair balance with an export ban and a Jones Act that won’t let us move oil from one Coast to another. We have an SPR that is holding more oil than we’ll ever know what to do with, but Big Guv is holding that over our head like a camera over anything Kardashian.

Oil producers in America aren’t going to find a lot of room to hedge down here, but as long as money is coming in and interest rates are not going to rise until 2016, it’s not that bad. Now if I’m the rest of the world here, I’m concerned. Maybe this is payback for tsk tsking the United States when it all fell apart in 2009. We made it back from there, but we had to do a lot of it on our own. Or this could be in spite of all the years we spent in fear of “peak oil” and the fragile state of the Middle East. Whatever it may be, we’re on top and running the roost. So when the teeming millions wonder how low can it go, you have to think WWAD.

EIA guesstimates

CRUDE +2.0mm – It’s hard to call it an “oil glut” when the reality is that U.S. refineries are running well over 16mm b/d. If one wanted to explain this correctly, there is an “oil grade glut.” The United States is producing 9.3mm b/d so we’re well short of what we’re using every day, but we are making a lot of crude that we’re not using. What we’ll need to see first is a reduction of crude oil imports and that’s not happening yet. Once we start pushing our imports under 6mm, we can talk more then.

GASOLINE -2.0mm – This is a tricky one. First off demand is going to be solid. The problem is that we’re losing ground on exports and that puts a wrinkle into the holiday demand that we’re going to see pulling barrels. Throw in the expectation that BP Whiting is going to be back from the dead and we might have a little panic going on right now. I think we’re going to draw down, but it’s not going to be that high.

DISTILLATE +2.0mm – Oh boy. This has been a rough summer for distillates and this lack of export demand is going to hit the hardest here. Refiners are planning to switch yields to favor dists in the fall, but the strong gasoline demand is going to cause some confusion.

UTILIZATION -0.5% ­ – We haven’t seen the Whiting numbers so far, but they show up this week and it gets us down.

CUSHING +1.0mm – For the old school thinkers.

Resource Investor

42 Comments on "America is the problem"

  1. JuanP on Sat, 29th Aug 2015 11:11 am 

    “America is the problem”
    I would rephrase that as humanity is the problem, has always been the problem, and will always be the problem. I don’t think any other country in the world would have done better if put in the USA’s position. Any country that became the most powerful in the world in the 20th Century would have become the most destructive in human history. America is a victim of its circumstances and its temporary and permanent relative advantages.

  2. Davy on Sat, 29th Aug 2015 11:15 am 

    Well said Juan. BTW, working on your advice from yesterday. Thanks.

  3. Rodster on Sat, 29th Aug 2015 4:22 pm 

    China’s economic problems were brought about by China. They did it to themselves. Here’s an article which shows what China’s looking at in the near future.

    “China’s workers abandon the city as Beijing faces an economic storm. Labour disputes are rising and some workers are leaving for the country amid fears a crashing economy could cause political and social unrest”

  4. onlooker on Sat, 29th Aug 2015 5:40 pm 

    Economics has been a sham ever since fiat money and massive lending became the norm and then even more since Nixon took us off the gold standard. More and more over time value and prices have become disconnected from the real worth of things. All the activity going on is just a game the players play to see who can buy what and who can pay what and who will be left with the money and who will be left with the bill. Completely irrelevant to the true state of the planet and the infrastructure of the planet which by the way in the US has not been given proper attention for many years. So in the final analysis the game is no longer played just in the US but all over the world. So America is not solely the culprit.

  5. onlooker on Sat, 29th Aug 2015 5:41 pm 

    I forgot to mention that perhaps the worst part of economics in the modern era has been how it gets inevitably funneled to the already wealthy.

  6. onlooker on Sat, 29th Aug 2015 5:52 pm 

    I forgot to mention that perhaps the worst part of economics in the modern era has been how it money gets inevitably funneled to the already wealthy.

  7. James Tipper on Sat, 29th Aug 2015 6:48 pm 

    Juan, great comment my man, seriously.

  8. Harquebus on Sat, 29th Aug 2015 7:09 pm 

    Easy when currency can be created from nothing. When the credit stops flowing, everything stops.

  9. Makati1 on Sat, 29th Aug 2015 7:13 pm 

    Another pimp ad for big oil to keep the suckers on the line. Waste of space on here. The lies are so obvious my 10 year old grand son could spot them. More ‘Rah Rah US’ bull shit.

    Finger pointing instead of taking a realistic look in the mirror. Common in America.

    And, no JuanP, I don’t think most other countries that had the US’ resources would have gone rogue like the US. The US made WW1 & WW2 profitable for the US and destructive to the rest of the world. It has existed on war profits since its beginnings. The ‘One World with the US running it’ is not a new plan.

    And, before you conspiracy theorist deniers jump in, think about the history of America and how it has only had true peace ~20 years out of its 230+ years. To deny it is to be nothing more than an over patriotic flag waving American ignorant of the real history of America.

    But then, ignorance is rampant in the US these days. Something to do with the brainwashing in its school system and all the drugs it consumes, I suspect. Oh well, the leveling has begun.

  10. apneaman on Sat, 29th Aug 2015 8:23 pm 

    Why is ” Big Guv is holding that over our head like a camera”? He does not address that. Basically it’s just another typical, it’s all Big Guv’s fault, libertarian sniveling and whining session. If it wasn’t for that, and that alone, all libertarians would be billionaires – guaranteed.

  11. Makati1 on Sat, 29th Aug 2015 8:23 pm 

    Why the headline is correct:
    “The Illusion of Choice: Ninety Percent of American Media Controlled by Six Corporations”

    “The conglomerates are: General Electric, News Corp., Disney, Viacom, Time Warner and CBS.”

    “One of these companies is also the 12th largest US military defense contractor, so it’s no surprise that so much of our entertainment centers around the glorification of war and violence…”

    Brainwashing in America is very thorough and successful. Everywhere, 24/7/365 from birht to death.

  12. Boat on Sat, 29th Aug 2015 9:31 pm 

    So how many citizens can one government employee control. Do the math and let me know. Do we need more government employees? I know we have in the US 430 – 450 billion every year in unpaid taxes. So the Republicans in response to a IRS scandal involving tea party groups cut IRS funding. You worried about big brother? Sometimes I wonder why I still pay mine.

  13. apneaman on Sat, 29th Aug 2015 10:20 pm 

    Warner says US government is “largest enterprise in the world”

    U.S. military is the largest employer in the world

  14. GregT on Sat, 29th Aug 2015 11:57 pm 


    Very good post by Juan. The problem isn’t with America per se. The problem is that the naked apes have advanced faster technologically, than they have advanced spiritually, emotionally, and intelligently. Some have advanced further than others however, but those that have are mostly not interested in power, greed, and control.

  15. GregT on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 12:02 am 

    “So how many citizens can one government employee control. Do the math and let me know.”

    I guess that would depend on the position held by that government employee, now wouldn’t it?

    “Sometimes I wonder why I still pay mine.”

    Well then Boat, why wonder? Just stop paying them.

  16. Makati1 on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 1:43 am 

    GregT, Boat is under the delusion that he is a free person…lol.

    If he is an American, his owners are:

    1. The IRS. If you own anything and you owe them, it is theirs.
    2. The bank he deals with/through. If he has a mortgage/credit card/loan, he is their slave.
    3. The state tax collector.
    4. The local tax collector.
    5. The state department that gives him a driver’s license.
    6. The local building inspector that has to approve anything larger than a dog house.
    7. Obamacare, if he is an American.
    8. Insurance companies of all kinds, if he insures anything.
    9. The internet provider he is using to comment.
    10. The phone company he uses.
    11. The guy who inspects his car, if he has one.
    12. Social Security if he has an income that is taxable.
    13. The NSA, FBI, etc.
    14. The governor of his state in an emergency.
    15. …

    I am sure I have missed some, but you get the idea. NO American is free. The 3rd world has more freedom than America. Every time you turn around in America, you have to sign long contracts with tons of fine print to do anything. Maybe that has to do with the fact that there is a lawyer for every 300 Americans…lol.

  17. apneaman on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 1:47 am 

    You forgot the #1 metric of your worth as a human being — Your credit score.

  18. GregT on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 2:28 am 


    Americans are not alone in their ownership. While I completely understand your animosity, the real problem is a human one. America just happens to be the best at death, destruction, exceptionalism, and stupidity at the moment. This too will change. When the next axis rises up, they will be no better, and in all likelihood worse.

    There is nothing wrong with any of your posts, but it does piss off the people like you that know better, even if they refuse to admit it.

  19. GregT on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 2:41 am 

    And also Mak,

    Boat is not under the delusion of anything in particular, Boat is just delusional. The guy has proven himself time and time again, to be completely devoid of rational intelligent thought. He is either a shill for the fossil fuel industry, or someone that we should all pity and feel badly for. If it is the latter, I apologize for cutting him down.

  20. JuanP on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 5:40 am 

    Mak, Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts in an absolute way. The antisocial psychopaths that control DC and Wall Street have virtually unlimited power and, therefore, their corruption knows no limits, but there are many great people in the USA, too.

    As a poor foreign immigrant to the USA (a voluntary choice because I turned my back on my family and their money, my friends, and my country for 25 years, until last year), I have been helped by many Americans from all walks of life through the years. I have been treated better by some Americans than I was ever treated by my own family and country folk. The same goes for my wife. We have been welcomed in their homes, loved, and respected like nowhere else.

    Like I’ve said before, I understand where your resentment towards the USA comes from because I feel exactly the same way about my country, and have felt like that for a very long time. I think, however, that if given the power and resources, Uruguayans would have inflicted as much damage on the world as Americans have, they just never had the opportunity. 😉

    In my opinion, the problem is human nature. Most of us are very flawed animals, too easily corrupted. If you think other people would have done better than Americans if put in the same position, then you simply have a higher opinion of humans than I do. But what can I do? I am after all an admitted antisocial misanthrope. I just think most people suck!

  21. onlooker on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 6:11 am 

    Mak,you are absolutely correct and are to be commended for understanding the nature of the beast which is the US. Having said that those who set in motion and have instigated this catastrophe in the manner which civilization has been developing are themselves pawns of our human nature so that is why I agree with Juan. We see the same abhorrent qualities in all those in power and with great wealth around the world. In the nexus of greed and lust for power is where you find the most UN-redeemable aspects of human nature.

  22. Davy on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 7:38 am 

    Greg, Juan, and Onlooker I have been here a long time. At different times I have been influenced by my friends here to change. I am attempting another change and that is to ignore the anti-American extremists preaching a distorted agenda. I am attempting to ignore them and remain on cue. I am going to moderate my message and focus on what I enjoy and end my battles with a hopeless cause. Extremism is a disease of society that will not end especially in extreme times like we are in currently. If the extremists want to yak on fine with me.

    This is like an alcoholic refusing that first drink but I am going to try for the sake of a stronger board. I appreciate all three of you influencing me in this regard. It is a decision that is a step in the direction of increased maturity we see in other great commenters here. I don’t like to name names but you know who you are.

    I appreciate the fairness and balance of your above comments on the US. I am a flag waiver but my flag is upside-down. This is my home and my people I will try to do my best reforming them from the grass roots level because I live and breathe it. We have a profound duty here to illuminate the world in a small but profound way to the dangers ahead. Epic dangers are ahead with pain, suffering, and loss few can fathom. In fact I would say it is so epic and great it is surreal in my mind. Parts of my mind struggle to comprehend what is ahead.

  23. JuanP on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 8:05 am 

    Davy, Your effort is appreciated. This board is the only place on this Earth where I have ever bothered to post comments, something which goes against my very private and reserved nature.

    The two main reasons I started posting here are that I like the commenters here more than the commenters on any other site or the people I meet in real life and I noticed a deterioration on the quality of comments posted in the months before I started posting. I felt I needed to contribute because this is the only place where I feel at home and I wanted to give back. I can’t be honest with the people I meet everyday because I have really radical opinions and most people are not ready for them.

    I try to focus on the many good comments here and make positive, useful comments and ignore the unavoidable foolishness that will inevitably be posted in an unmoderated forum, but sometimes I loose it, too. I am not quite as nice in person, I am making an effort, too, and for the same reason, for the good of the board. This board is the only place where I feel I belong, surrounded by freaks I can relate to, even when we disagree.

  24. Davy on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 8:21 am 

    Thanks, Juan, your thoughts are mine also. I have few around me who have the balls or the understanding to talk about what we talk about here. I need this mental exercise just as I must do my physical work out. I also feel this is a heroic undertaking by us doomers and preppers here to warn other to profound dangers ahead. Small and proper decisions can make a huge impact on people’s lives. Just the awakening from the comatose state most people are in from the drug of the status quo is important.

    We are doing the equivalent work of Socrates and Plato. Laugh if you like but I see the end of the world as we know it like man has never experienced in the last 10,000 years and likely not since the human bottleneck of 70,000 years ago. We are discussing that end. That is as profound as anything the ancients spoke of. I am saying this in a collective sense. I am not comparing anyone here to these greats but the amalgamation of all of us together through the digital media is comparable to them.

  25. Boat on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 2:17 pm 

    NO American is free. The 3rd world has more freedom than America. Every time you turn around in America, you have to sign long contracts with tons of fine print to do anything. Maybe that has to do with the fact that there is a lawyer for every 300 Americans…lol.

    Funny how one gets called the thick skull.

    If you want to be free there are options available.

    Who wants to be free if you can’t eat enough, live in a comfortable house, watch TV, check out the computer, have a fridge, washing machine, microwave, have access to health care. I need the mechanic for the car when I need to drive to work and shop.
    If you want to walk without shoes, homeless and hungry and call that freedom you should donate your brain to science cause nobody is that dumb. (as you burn the globe typing on your computer making sure you go down in the annuals in history of being one of the most hypocritical humans in history. Wow a run on sentence I got so excited. lol

    Apeman, you crap everyday and pee in your neighbors yard or use that PVC pipe I made.

    You got 30 year shingles on your roof or toss on more banana leaves every few days.

    I am at least real about my life style. Maybe the key word here is deniers instead of doomers while you stock up on the stuff society makes for the day when they won’t and call it ok.

    Sling the insults. Am ready.

  26. apneaman on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 2:40 pm 

    Ya boat, because no apes existed and had lives prior to all those goodies you mentioned. How does it make you feel knowing that insatiable need you have for those goodies is going to lead to horrible deaths for your grand kids? Maybe the girls will get to spend their last years as “comfort women” for the “security forces” or FEMA camp ladies of the night. Enjoy your gizmos fuck wad. It’s all you ever talk about, obviously it is what you decided on as the sole reason for existing on this planet with the one and only life you get. A common man indeed.

  27. Boat on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 3:01 pm 

    So why don’t you argue that humans should have never existed. You wouldn’t need to use fossil fuels to explain your disdain about how fossil fuels are destroying the planet. There would be no written history to link to. Climate change would come and go with no influence except animal crap. All that waste you created by being alive would have never been created.

  28. onlooker on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 3:30 pm 

    Fossil fuels are not destroying the planet we are. We could have been good stewards yet we have become destroyers. We are all part of this matrix of over-consumption and over-population. At least we doomers acknowledge where that is leading us. Juan and Davy thank you for those sincere from the heart comments. It is not easy discussing these matters. I also feel a fraternity with all on PO. That is why I come and feel most on this site are reasonable in their comments and views though we may differ. I feel everyone on this planet should wake up to the disturbing realities it may not make a difference but that is what we owe posterity. Besides maybe it will make a difference and we here are contributing so that is awakening may happen.

  29. Apneaman on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 3:48 pm 

    Boat so there was no writing before apes started using fossil carbon for fuel? Like the tales of Gilgamesh from the first major civilization-Sumer? And your implication that if some one who was born in modernity used any of the trappings of it then they have no right to criticize how we use resources is completely juvenile. It’s like saying men are not allowed to have an opinion on abortion because they can’t get pregnant. Boat you have yet to present an argument that was not a blatant propaganda meme or nonsensical. Plenty of sites on the web that explain how logic and logical arguments work. It was all written down and passed on to us from the ancient Greeks, from 2500 years ago – before fossil fuels.

  30. GregT on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 4:00 pm 

    “Who wants to be free if you can’t eat enough, live in a comfortable house, watch TV, check out the computer, have a fridge, washing machine, microwave, have access to health care. I need the mechanic for the car when I need to drive to work and shop.”

    Fortunately for you Boat, your ancestors had a much better attitude than you do. They got by very well without all of the creature comforts that you seem to believe that you need.

    Human beings existed for hundreds of thousands of years without exploiting meaningful amounts of fossil fuels. It isn’t human existence that is the problem, it is our current disdain for the future of our planet, and all life on it, just so that we can have a bunch of stuff that we do not need, today. Your attitude Boat, is the problem, and quite frankly, sucks.

    I hope that you live long enough to answer your children, when they ask you why we didn’t do anything to save the planet for them.

  31. GregT on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 4:12 pm 

    Wow Apnea,

    Just heard about the storm in Vancouver yesterday. 500,000 without power at one point? Unreal. And to think that our scientists are predicting things to get much more intense. We’ve already screwed this planet up in a big way.

  32. onlooker on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 4:23 pm 

    Greg said it perfectly Boat, you and your sense of entitlement is the problem. At this time your type of thinking is a luxury we cannot afford.

  33. GregT on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 4:33 pm 

    Even BC Hydro’s power outages website got taken down by power outages.

  34. Apneaman on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 5:13 pm 

    Greg, I came out to my moms in Maple Ridge yesterday afternoon to do some work for her and the drive over was interesting to say the least. In spite of many warnings not to go out unless necessary, the roads and shopping areas were packed. Power went out shortly after I got here, but only for 1 hr so I was still able to doom in between picking up branches (not the work I intended). None of it has or will sink in with the sheep and especially not in BC with an economy that has seen about the least amount of suffering in the western world. Drought, ocean die offs/dead zones, water restrictions, record wildfires and power outages are not enough to dampen the spirits of the great Canadian consumer paradise, let alone wake them the fuck up. Only death, hunger and great suffering might do that. It’s already too late to do anything other than prepare for the blows. Except for the kids, I do not feel all that much sympathy. It’s like watching someone destroy themselves with drugs and alcohol (which I’m an expert on). Other than telling them what you see there is absolutely nothing you can do. Tragic apes.

  35. GregT on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 5:36 pm 

    After many conversations with my (former) fellow coworkers in regards to the hot summer in Vancouver, listening to them go on about how wonderful the climate now is, I couldn’t help but remember all of the people wandering out onto the seabed when the waves receded in Thailand, right before the Tsunami came crashing into the resorts.

  36. Boat on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 6:22 pm 

    Human beings existed for hundreds of thousands of years without exploiting meaningful amounts of fossil fuels.

    Yea my grampa used a team of horses with a 2 bottom plow to farm 320 acres. His first windmill was awesome and then dad after WWII bought him his first used 32 ford tractor. Those were the highlights of his life they saved so much hand labor. Maybe some of you doomers need to experience a couple of years at that old life. You might rethink technology.
    Another example,
    My brother was in Ghana Africa 4 years ago. They had a dozen guys mixing concrete one 5 gal bucket at a time building a structure. You could always live there green and do backbreaking work for almost nothing and be to tired to complain at the end of the day.

  37. antaris on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 6:40 pm 

    100 years ago most people were involved in food production . 100 years from now it will be the same. Today I was able to talk with my wife about food storage and the grocery Super Store up the road with no power for 24 hours. No looting, just meat and frozen food about to go bad. All from one small wind storm.

  38. apneaman on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 7:13 pm 

    Boat, so your grandpa’s life was completely meaningless and joyless because he had to do physical work?

    You might think I’m crazy, but I have spent decades of my life intentionally picking up weights over and over and over to stimulate and grow every one of my muscle groups while simultaneously working very physical jobs. I also rode a bike and hiked on purpose too. Contrary to your unique theory that physical work = an impoverished existence, I loved it. What has impoverished my life was a few serious illnesses that forced me to all but stop. It’s almost as if we were born and evolved to be highly physical creatures, but that can’t be right and it’s merely a coincidence that as we have become less physical obesity, diabetes, autism, asthma depression, dementia, anxiety have exploded and it’s the US, gizmo and gadget central, that is leading the charge.

  39. GregT on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 7:40 pm 

    “Human beings existed for hundreds of thousands of years without exploiting meaningful amounts of fossil fuels.”

    And lived happy, healthy, satisfying, and productive lives, I might add. Three quarters of the population wasn’t on anti-depressants in your grandpa’s day. People didn’t waste much of their spare time immersed in other people’s fake lives on television. They had their own lives. They ate real food, and they had strong family and community ties.

  40. Makati1 on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 7:46 pm 

    Ap, I don’t think Boat has ever taken time to enjoy life. Not the electro fueled on he seems to think is necessary for a good life, but the real one even the poor can enjoy.

    I remember days spent roaming the fields and woods around our home in PA. Looking at the Milkyway spread across the sky on a clear night. Swimming in clean creeks and ponds anywhere we wanted to. Sledding, on runner type sleds, down the farm hills nearby. Snow clean enough to eat. And on and on. All things now pretty much extinct. To many laws restricting real fun, because “we might get hurt”.

    I live in the 3rd world and can tell you that people here have a good life without all of those ‘conveniences’. Does it matter if you play chess with a carved ivory set or bottle caps? If you don’t have TV but can still see the stars and the Milkyway? I see few here with frowns on their faces. The kids can have fun for hours with a partially blown up balloon that they can pass and kick around and chase. No batteries required.

    The “Good Life” is free. The life Boat wants is a series of chains and restrictions. True freedom has never been experienced by most Americans. And their kids and grand kids will be in an even worse slavery, IF they live thru our self-caused bottleneck.

  41. apneaman on Sun, 30th Aug 2015 8:08 pm 

    The Great Unraveling

    “The ideological and physical hold of American imperial power, buttressed by the utopian ideology of neoliberalism and global capitalism, is unraveling. Most, including many of those at the heart of the American empire, recognize that every promise made by the proponents of neoliberalism is a lie. Global wealth, rather than being spread equitably, as neoliberal proponents promised, has been funneled upward into the hands of a rapacious, oligarchic elite, creating vast economic inequality….”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *