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Eyes Wide Shut - "We Are In A Bad Spot"

Tyler Durden's picture


Submitted by Chris Martenson of Peak Prosperity,

After traveling some, speaking with lots of people, reading, and digesting, I cannot escape the conclusion that things remain hopelessly off track.  Whatever form of 'recovery' is being sought here simply will not arrive.

The core of my views is shaped by the idea that the very thing being sought, more economic growth (and exponential growth, at that), is exactly the root of the problem.  I suppose I would take a similarly dim view of an alcoholic trying to drink their way back to health as I do the increasingly interventionist central bank and associated political policies the world over.

Go on then, drink more, but I think we all know what the result will be.

The most pressing concept at the center of it all is the idea of net energy, or the energy returned on energy invested.  As I explained in the Crash Course, the price of energy is not really the most pressing that we need to keep track of.  Instead, what we care about is the net, or surplus, energy that is returned from our energy exploration and production efforts for society to do with as it wishes.

Figure 1:  This hypothetical chart reveals the energy returned (green area) on energy invested (red part) and postulates what trying to live in a world of 3:1 energy returns would look like visually.  Where petroleum finds of just a few decades ago where offering 95% or greater returns on energy invested, a future of 3:1 oil offers just a 66% return.

The above chart reveals the world towards which we are rapidly moving with new petroleum finds being deeper, tighter, smaller, and generally more difficult to get to and extract, thereby offering lower net energy returns than in the past.

If there's less 'green area' in which to organize ourselves, then we will simply have to do fewer things.  However, the idea that we are going to get increasing amounts of exponentially-growing economy in conjunction with falling net energy is simply nuts.  It is insane, or at least developmentally immature.

Predictions for a World of Declining Net Energy

The world around me makes a lot more sense when I think about it in terms of net energy and where we are in that story.   Everywhere I go, I simply see oil, oil, and more oil, expressed in jets in the air, cars and trucks on the road, abundant and varied food types at every time of the year, and stores crammed with consumer goods from hither and yon.  We truly live in the age of abundance.

Yet that abundance is heavily subsidized by petroleum as well as other fossil fuels.

Where the prior 150 years were defined by ever-increasing amounts of both gross and net energy, a remarkable experience unlikely to ever again be replicated, the next 150 will be defined by its exact opposite.

The predictions for living in such a world are impossible to make in terms of timing and magnitude, but the trends and direction can be pinned down.

The big picture items are these:

  • Living standards are going to fall.  Ever-rising gross and net amounts of energy provide the essential building blocks for rising living standards, both directly through the goods and services brought to our doorsteps, such as food and warmth and mobility, and indirectly by allowing lots and lots of people to deploy their talents to things other than securing the basics.  In fact, this process has already begun; it will follow the 'outside in' model where the weaker elements of society and the weaker nation states will absorb the first effects of 'less than there used to be.' 
  • Inflation will come.  Because of the tendency of humans to try and print their way out of trouble, and because the system is now so saturated with debt that 'allowing' it to crumble to meet the realities of a world of less would risk a catastrophic systemic collapse of institutions and ruling parties, there's not much doubt that sooner or later all this will end in a very scary round of inflation.  Some currencies will not survive at all, and the areas served by them will experience hyperinflation first and complete monetary destruction second.
  • Stocks and bonds will fail to generate real returns.  Real returns, meaning positive growth in the value of stocks and bonds after inflation is subtracted, are an impossibility in a world where the economy is not growing in real terms.  You have to have real growth in the economy if you want real growth in stocks and bonds (in aggregate, that is).  Stripping away all of the gobbledy-gook, real GDP growth is simply not possible without real increases in real things – and those depend, in very large measure, on how much net energy there is to go around.  With declining net energy, there will fewer things to sell and do. 
  • Retirements will be postponed, if they happen at all.  It is only the very recent generations that have been afforded the reality of this thing called 'retirement,' which is the idea that you can live off of one's prior savings and investments for a decade or three, consuming and not producing the whole time.  Not so coincidentally (to me, at any rate), retirement and the exploitation of fossil fuels came along at roughly the same time.  That is, with enough 'green area,' we humans can do anything at all that we want with all that surplus energy. We can go to the moon, we can take long holidays to distant places, we can host Olympics, we can retire or do any of a billion other things.  For many, especially those at the margins of society, retirement will simply not be an option.  Retirement as a concept, and these individuals specifically, will be casualties of circumstances.
  • We're just going to do fewer things and produce less stuff.  What exactly will go away as the green area gets pinched downwards is impossible to predict, as much will depend on decisions that have not yet been made.  Perhaps we'll do something completely surprising with our remaining energy, channel the spirits of Easter Island, and build some huge yet frivolous monuments to ourselves.  Perhaps we'll squander the last bits of good energy on bad wars that end up destroying infrastructure that could only be built when there was enough surplus to go around.  Or maybe we'll get it right and choose a future that we can strive for and use our remaining resources wisely to achieve those dreams. While the exact features are impossible to predict, we can say that the map of our territory will shrink.  We won't be able to do everything, or even very many things as compared to before. 
  • More resources will be dedicated to and consumed by the energy sector.  One easy observation to make is that if net energy is declining, then we are going to be spending more of our energy wealth on the process of obtaining more energy.  This is one great field to be in, whether in the production side or the efficiency side.  If it takes more and more energy to get energy, what does that mean?  It means more drilling, pipelines, processing facilities, and all of the thousands of job types and millions of parts and components that are needed to get the energy out of the ground and to market.  As prices inevitably rise, the desire (if not the necessity) of using energy more efficiently will skyrocket.  Everything in the entire "built" environment, from commercial and residential buildings, to factories, to how we move ourselves around, and the water we drink will be targets for improvements and enhancements.  If you are thinking of a career to move into, the energy sector is a great place to start.

Eyes Wide Shut

I think we're in a bad spot.  I mean the globe here, but the developed economies in particular.  I am losing hope that we will navigate towards anything other than a hard landing at some point because even with copious amounts of data accumulating suggesting that the old ways are not working, I cannot detect even the slightest hint of original thinking or new thoughts coming out of the marbled halls of power.

Business-as-usual and more-of-the-same seem to be the only operative ideas right now.  And that's not really unexpected; systems always try to preserve themselves long after it should be obvious that a new tack is in order.  So there's nothing really surprising here about where things seem to be headed.

But what is a bit startling to me is the number of individuals that have not yet caught onto the idea that things have permanently and irrevocably changed.


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Tue, 10/23/2012 - 17:54 | 2914146 jcia
jcia's picture

Where is SRSRocco when you need him?

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:01 | 2914156 Bay of Pigs
Bay of Pigs's picture

Or Stanley Kubrick.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:18 | 2914208 theMAXILOPEZpsycho
theMAXILOPEZpsycho's picture

The only way to help the proletariat is far greater tariffs on fossil fuel usage. I've been attending exiting late night meetings after work at my job with the government regulating small businesses. We've been discussing direct actions such as writing letters to politicians and spontaneous screenings of al gores best work in order to wake up the masses. We must wake up the masses - religion is the opium of the people, a great man once said. Capitalism and profit have become the new religion. It's up to us the put the proletariat first and wake up the masses from their slumber.

Join us in protesting for greater taxes on fuel usage.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:50 | 2914323 fnord88
fnord88's picture

This article is wrong. Not only is energy going to get cheaper, but it will get more decentralized, leading to massive benefits for the human race. 15 years away at most from solar and batteries replacing power stations and oil. Along with other massive decentralizations coming in manufacturing and finance, things are not so bad.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:02 | 2914371 sunaJ
sunaJ's picture

What I've been saying for 3 years now. Peak oil is about net energy return. We will always have oil, just not enough, so beware of governments that want to fight and kill over the last of it. It is a losing game that betrays our failure to innovate.

Wed, 10/24/2012 - 01:31 | 2915024 Tommy Gunner
Tommy Gunner's picture

Have you had your IQ tested lately?

It doesn't matter if the US is the ONLY oil producer.  If the value of the oil you pull out of the ground is only slightly more than the value you get out of it - then you can have 10 trillion barrels of oil - but it isn't going to do you much good.

The tar sands are expensive to extract - deep sea oil is expensive to extract - fracked oil is expensive to extract.

To put it in simpler terms for the thick fucks who don't get it - let's say we found an ocean of oil 5000 miles long and 1000 miles deep...on the MOON... we'd have oil a hell of a long time BUT, ______________________________

Now if your IQ is over 80 you should be able to fill in the blank



Tue, 10/23/2012 - 20:53 | 2914614 centurain
centurain's picture

The first satellite launched by the US was solar powered and left earth in 1958.  Per your theory of 15 years for government to magically create solar powered everything then we must already be in 1973...

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:58 | 2914500 CH1
CH1's picture

The only way to help the proletariat is far greater tariffs on fossil fuel usage.

Fuck off, thug.

Tax your own enlightened self.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 20:34 | 2914575 DoChenRollingBearing
DoChenRollingBearing's picture

Yes, CH1, + 1

The free markets will lead us to a better way.  We do not need more taxes and .gov regulation.  

Maybe the solution to future energy declines will be buying less new stuff...  That might mean more replacement bearings...  I could live with that.

Wed, 10/24/2012 - 01:33 | 2915026 Tommy Gunner
Tommy Gunner's picture

So let me guess - you drive around in a Hummer with Milli Vanilli cranked up thinking you are the shit.

Well you are a piece of shit polluting my fucking air - and taking up my roads. 

In Europe it takes nearly a hundred bucks to fill up a small car - and guess what - that keeps the assholes with their SUV's off the road.

I am all for higher taxes on gasoline - how about we refer to it as the "KEEP THE ASSHOLES OFF THE ROAD TAX"

Wed, 10/24/2012 - 07:39 | 2915265 DosZap
DosZap's picture

Well you are a piece of shit polluting my fucking air - and taking up my roads. 

In Europe it takes nearly a hundred bucks to fill up a small car - and guess what - that keeps the assholes with their SUV's off the road.

I am all for higher taxes on gasoline - how about we refer to it as the "KEEP THE ASSHOLES OFF THE ROAD TAX"

Are you paying for the dudes Hummer, or gas?, HELL NO.............................

As long as the $$$$$ is not coming out your ass, screw you.Sick and tired of assholes telling others what they should be doing with their own money.Whoever the hell your talking about is paying taxes, and likely more than you,where do you get off thinking you have the right to tell someone else what they should drive, live in, as long as your not FOOTING the bill?.

It's his air, and roads as much as yours.

WHEN you start footing the bill then BITCH.

We have a 10 square mile District  full of assholes instructing us on what,when, and where we can do everything now...............the last thing we need as a Republic is individuals thinking they have the right to tell others how to live.



Tue, 10/23/2012 - 20:01 | 2914506 willwork4food
willwork4food's picture


Al Gore has more carbon making, footprint forming stuff than 50% of all Americans...the BS carbon scare was just so TPTB could suck more cash from us. I've got a much better idea what to do with these self assumed gods of finance and law and it involves new rope and a tree.

Join you for what? You.are.deluded.


Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:00 | 2914158 mtomato2
mtomato2's picture

This article succinctly articulates the very concept I have been trying to describe to those I know and love for the past five years.  Drinking your way out of alcoholism ends in death,   Every.  Single.  Time.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:08 | 2914179 Alea Iactaest
Alea Iactaest's picture

So you're saying it IS different this time?

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:16 | 2914203 DRT RD
DRT RD's picture

Isn't it funny that alcohol treats alcoholism.  

The printing is only a symptom of a much larger problem. It seems to me that the need for power, and prestige are at the root of the problem.



Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:47 | 2914303 knukles
knukles's picture

Secretary closing meeting comments the other day:

"If anyone has a burning desire it can always be treated with penicillin."



Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:04 | 2914373 MiltonFriedmans...
MiltonFriedmansNightmare's picture

The root of the problem....
Lust, gluttony, greed, sloth, envy, wrath and pride

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:22 | 2914220 Al Huxley
Al Huxley's picture

So far, sure, but that just means we're overdue for a success - so crack those bottles!

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:58 | 2914356 new game
new game's picture

wish-drink/think-drink more/realize-sober up/give up on the wish-think-hopium thingy


for the only reason; history of human behavior repeats.

nothing has changed about human behavior, just the circumstances...

just the period in time you are living; the later stages of the oppulance of about 80 years of growth/prosertity

all due to cheap energy.  thank you Chris, my thoughts exactly.

1 billion humans around 1900 and 6 billion one hundred years later all due to oil.

so what hapens when what Chris describes affects human numbers as a whole.

hmmm- not thinking about a pretty sight. some call it attrition...

Wed, 10/24/2012 - 04:30 | 2915146 THX 1178
THX 1178's picture

Yeah... its not the case that history repeats. Humans just never change-- never grow up. We never grew out of killing one another with swords en masse... we just found a better way to do it. KABOOM!

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 22:40 | 2914803 a growing concern
a growing concern's picture

Hell yeah!  We may be batting .000 right now, but one of these times we're gonna hit us a home run, fer shure!

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:36 | 2914267 Cash Is King
Cash Is King's picture

MT, LOL, I think that's Every. Single Malt. Time. No?


Wed, 10/24/2012 - 06:10 | 2915196 mtomato2
mtomato2's picture

I like a scotch old enough to order itself...

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:46 | 2914301 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

Sobering up leads to death every single time, too.

It's just slower and less fun.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:02 | 2914166 semperfi
semperfi's picture

Foward !

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:35 | 2914268 Thecomingcollapse
Thecomingcollapse's picture

Yes, the change is working..... just really really slowly

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 21:30 | 2914689 imbrbing
imbrbing's picture


Tue, 10/23/2012 - 22:49 | 2914816 NachoLiebor
NachoLiebor's picture

Forward all that debt to your kids and grandkids.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:03 | 2914170 perelmanfan
perelmanfan's picture

"Where the prior 150 years were defined by ever-increasing amounts of both gross and net energy, a remarkable experience unlikely to ever again be replicated, the next 150 will be defined by its exact opposite." Yes, but - and here is where it gets interesting - perhaps the next 150 years will be defined by ever increasing amounts of gross and net efficiency. There is a discontinuity-damping factor to applying intelligence to processes once performed through massive and profligate energy expenditure. Just one example - printing and shipping millions of gross tons of paper books, vs. electronically selling e-books. The forces of de-materialization are potent. 

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:23 | 2914226 wretch
wretch's picture

Just because you don't see the electrons doesn't mean they're free.  Take the Amazon outage yesterday as a lesson.  In contrast, my paper books have shown tremendous uptime -- over 7 9's, at least!

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 21:31 | 2914692 imbrbing
imbrbing's picture

Mine too, until I spill my coffee on a page or the dog eats it

Wed, 10/24/2012 - 00:20 | 2914954 Incubus
Incubus's picture

I'm such a hedonist.  I enjoy feeling the pages. 


Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:05 | 2914172 cossack55
cossack55's picture

It is quite obvious that if all the above is true, then we need to build more nuke plants on more fault lines. Problem solvede

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:51 | 2914328 lakecity55
lakecity55's picture

"Release the HAARP, Mr Spock."

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 20:05 | 2914518 Alea Iactaest
Alea Iactaest's picture

Cossack, please remind me which problem you are solving.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:08 | 2914176 Seasmoke
Seasmoke's picture

retirement is a dumb idea.......retirement (public pensions) at the expense of others, is an even worse idea

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:34 | 2914263 Die Weiße Rose
Die Weiße Rose's picture

"retirement is a dumb idea....."

tell that to those fools who had to pay contributions into Pension-funds all their lives only to see their retirement funds plundered by out of control Governments to pay for the bailouts of rogue banks and pay-offs to corrupt politicians.

public pensions were taxes paid into pension funds by workers who believed they could trust the Government and the financial Industry to keep their hard-earned money safe.

But those tax-payer retirement funds were plundered, stolen and wasted

on bullshit !

Lets get this straight!


Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:28 | 2914419 cossack55
cossack55's picture

I assume they also believed in the tooth fairy, Easter bunny, and Santa.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:55 | 2914492 mvsjcl
mvsjcl's picture

Not everyone is an actuary. Their only problem is that they believed in good governance. Heck, even the Tooth Fairy occasionally tossed a buck here and there.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 21:01 | 2914630 Cloud9.5
Cloud9.5's picture

   I have come to the conclusion that good governance is an oxymoron.

Wed, 10/24/2012 - 11:09 | 2915760 Col_Sanders
Col_Sanders's picture

The problem is they trusted someone else to do something they didn't want to take the time to learn to do for themselves.

They bought a pitch from a snake-oil salesman.

And they should have known better.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 20:49 | 2914604 Bay of Pigs
Bay of Pigs's picture

What fucking contributions? 3%? the teachers in New Jersey?

Try the private sector and let me know what you think about providing your "own retirement".

Wed, 10/24/2012 - 07:45 | 2915289 DosZap
DosZap's picture

"retirement is a dumb idea....."

tell that to those fools who had to pay contributions into Pension-funds all their lives only to see their retirement funds plundered by out of control Governments to pay for the bailouts of rogue banks and pay-offs to corrupt politicians.

public pensions were taxes paid into pension funds by workers who believed they could trust the Government and the financial Industry to keep their hard-earned money safe.

But those tax-payer retirement funds were plundered, stolen and wasted

on bullshit !

Lets get this straight!


Subsitute SS for Pensions, and you will be attacked.......................even though the SS was paid for by those SAME indiuviduals, even on a larger percentage than the Pensions.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:30 | 2914178 FreeMktFisherMN
FreeMktFisherMN's picture

After just joining the business institutions program ( a minor at my university) in addition to being an econ major, I got added to the email listserv, and after getting emails about corporate recruiters from Chrysler and Allstate, I get one from the prof--a major Keynesian; even changed the name of his class and as the university has it, from intro to macroecon to 'intro to keynesian economics'--running the show and it reads "Oh yeah!" And then it links to i-banking internships at GS. 


God help us. 


Edit: I don't want to sound hyperbolic, because it's not like I didn't know how things work as far as .gov and academia colluding to further the keynesian agenda, but there's probably not a student who received this email from this guy who would stop to consider the ethics of supporting/working for a company like this or JPM, etc. that co-opts government and funds the corporatist state and goes hat in hand to the District of Corruption when it makes bad bets and needs bailouts, threatening 'martial law' if it doesn't get them.


Lead me not into temptation, Lord, but deliver me from evil.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:15 | 2914399 Pants McPants
Pants McPants's picture

Good for your, MN.  As the saying goes, I wish I knew then what I know now....

In other words, I wish I knew as much as you seem to know while I was an undergrad.  Been a few years since undergrad (went to UST in St. Paul), but I had no idea what questions to ask. 

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 20:36 | 2914482 FreeMktFisherMN
FreeMktFisherMN's picture

Thanks for the compliment, Pants McPants. My brother goes to UST, by the way. I Pray that he stays out of the catholic dogma and sticks to true Biblical foundations.


I'll have to find a job I can live with. Might well mean I have to be self-employed, which is going to be critical if not already because counterparty risk extends obviously into reliance on someone else for one's paycheck. 


It's not been easy, what with my peers not at all aware let alone outraged at the Federal Reserve corruption, the reality of the indebtedness, etc., as well as immorality of it all, as far as seeming to be on an island with this mentality. Come on ZH often to talk to like minded folks. To fellow students, OTOH, going out on a limb is being 'conservative' as signaled by supporting Romney. 


Hope I can find a career path through commodities trading; think open outcry would be a hoot, or else consulting/wealth management for people, where I could implore them to hedge against inflation with PMs, tangibles, especially fixed income, but definitely not limited to just those folks whose incomes are not keeping up with inflation. I've even been applying for these kinds of positions and say on my resume' that I'm willing to forego completing the degree here (I'm a junior undergrad) because I'm serious about entering business world. Hopefully one of the recruiters/HR people realizes that just becasue I don't have a 'degree' doesn't mean I'm worthless and not to be considered. If I were in their shoes, I'd take it as a great attribute in that this person thinks for himself instead of regurgitating what the profs propagandize in pavlovian fashion.



Tue, 10/23/2012 - 23:34 | 2914876 Almost Solvent
Almost Solvent's picture

Pants McPants is a fucking moron.

Don't feed the feral animals here on ZH!

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:10 | 2914185 kito
kito's picture

nope, its never different this time....time for the new reagan/volcker to take things to the next level.....banks are recapitalized, consumers who defaulted on mortgages are back buying loans at 3 pct, hubbard will reign in the lliquidity, romney will wipe away regulations...romney will secure irans oil supply........the u.s. got its mojo back baby!!!................

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:14 | 2914196 RiotActing
RiotActing's picture

They're not picking Romney.... the guy is a moron. They are not going to let him anywhere near the presidency. Get a clue...

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:54 | 2914332 TWSceptic
TWSceptic's picture

Romney is less of a moron than Bush...

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 20:38 | 2914580 CPL
CPL's picture

I don't pick a sock puppet because of it's intelligence.


I pick one because it amuses people.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:26 | 2914210 fonzannoon
fonzannoon's picture

Kito I was about to blast away at everything you said but I watched the video and I feel strangely at peace. Thanks.

Kito check out the documentary "surviving progress" It's on netflix

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:26 | 2914241 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

Disco gives me gas.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:40 | 2914287 kito
kito's picture

its funny when people take my comments at face value ;).....................i feel like MDB............

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 20:38 | 2914581 CPL
CPL's picture


Wed, 10/24/2012 - 00:42 | 2914980 Incubus
Incubus's picture

You have to be upfront with internet folk.  They're only capable of understanding things as they are said. 


Remember, we're dealing with populations of peoples that are the products of a lifetime of social-media conditioning.  Layered thought only happens when they're paid. 

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:19 | 2914211 Everybodys All ...
Everybodys All American's picture

Hey. Volcker did have the right solutions. Do you have to be so pessimistic?

Cut government spending drastically and begin to raise interest rates incrementally is the solution. Wait and see whether you can get people like you or I to agree because that's the problem. Congress on the left and Congress on the right can't agree the sun will come up tomorrow much less a solution to try to bring the US out of this mess.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:25 | 2914234 fonzannoon
fonzannoon's picture

go ahead and cut that spending and raise those rates. I dare you. I double dare you.

long riot gear

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:38 | 2914276 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

The financial cliff abruptly cuts all spending. You'd be surprised how people get in line when there is a Global crisis.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:02 | 2914367 fonzannoon
fonzannoon's picture

There is no financial cliff. It is a straw man. An illusion. Gravity and consequences will be postponed and people will fall off their own little financial cliff one at a time.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 20:30 | 2914566 ljag
ljag's picture

I can see 'down' arrows in my future.....but here goes: TPTB have figured this all out a long time ago.....there are just TOO MANY PEOPLE! How the hell can we get anything accomplished when we have to deal with 1/2 the population that can't figure shit out....while the other 1/2 wants to control it? ANSWER: get the 2 parties to fight. In this case, I would assume a certain 'lean' towards those that have (brains, money etc). Therefore, things are moving along nicely. When the SHTF, only those who are 'aware' are going to survive. The rest get sent to FEMA camps and/or kilt. Thus, it behooves you to get your shit together before someone else comes along and takes it. Most city police depts. refuse to answer 911 unless there is death/mayhem NOW......waddya think its going to be like 5 yrs from now? Hello? You can openly smoke weed in NY or LA but you couldn't 5 yrs ago...wassup with that? How soon will it be before you can openly kill someone under the right cirumstances (think a bunch of blacks/whites watching a guy beat down another black/white person). Not only could it will in your lifetime. Just saying....

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 23:46 | 2914900 tsx500
tsx500's picture

damn, man, you just totally ruined my buzz !

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:22 | 2914406 franzpick
franzpick's picture

Or pull together when there is a national crisis. The end of world war eye-eye was a spending cliff that left businesses closed, millions suddenly unemployed, and a widespread fear of returning depression: free of today's obstructive, wasteful, government regulatory and tax yolk, the unemployed people, the business owners, the managers and everyone else got right in line, and created a recovery. Can't find the link, but the people-financial-power in building that successful national responce to some very bad economic numbers, still exists, be it buried under 6 decades of wasteful and corrupt government growth and private-sector suppression. And we could build it again

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:46 | 2914297 kito
kito's picture

no way fonz, this is america the great...........check your pessimism at the statue of liberty!!!!..........come fonz, sing with me!!!..................

O beautiful for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties
Above the fruited plain!
America! America! God shed His grace on thee,
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea!

O beautiful for pilgrim feet,
Whose stern impassion'd stress
A thoroughfare for freedom beat
Across the wilderness!
America! America! God mend thine ev'ry flaw,
Confirm thy soul in self-control,
Thy liberty in law!

O beautiful for heroes proved In liberating strife,
Who more than self their country loved,
And mercy more than life!
America! America! May God thy gold refine
Till all success be nobleness,
And ev'ry gain divine!

O Beautiful for patriot dream
That sees beyond the years
Thine alabaster cities gleam,
Undimmed by human tears!
America! America! God shed His grace on thee,
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea!

Wed, 10/24/2012 - 00:02 | 2914923 Milestones
Milestones's picture

Well if you can do it like Ray Charles---O.K.            Milestones

Wed, 10/24/2012 - 06:59 | 2915234 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

"For purple mountain majesties
Above the fruited plain!"

I'm sorry, but that part never sounded right to me.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:53 | 2914333 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

Volcker didn't cut spending--he was Carter's Fedhead.

And during the Reagan administration, spending increased MASSIVELY.

I don't think you know what you're talking about.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:03 | 2914369 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

This is not the 80's. it is impossible for the fed to raise rates for two reasons. The first is servicing the debt at these levels would be impossible for the government with higher rates. The second is the fact that the moment they did the fed would blow up their balance sheet with the extended duration they have on bond. I'm sorry to tell you this but we are at the end of the road.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:19 | 2914407 fonzannoon
fonzannoon's picture

Doc who do you think totally freakin loses their mind first, me or Kito? I would put a turkey sandwich on it but I think it might be me. How would anyone collect? They would have to explain to the people at the asylum that they are owed a turkey sandwich. Plus if Kito came to see me to collect there is a good chance they would admit him upon entering the premises. Maybe we need an escrow account?

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:24 | 2914415 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

I don't know that's a tough call, but I'd have to say kito... He seems to be losing it right now. I noticed a couple days ago that he seems to be teetering on the edge. As for myself it's a daily struggle with patience and sanity.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:37 | 2914437 fonzannoon
fonzannoon's picture

i hear you. i am going to stay patient as well. we have come too far to lose it now.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 20:31 | 2914567 mvsjcl
mvsjcl's picture

I've already lost it--that's why I'm here. What are you doing here?

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 21:39 | 2914711 fonzannoon
fonzannoon's picture

If you are here you have not lost it. You just woke up.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 21:39 | 2914710 kito
kito's picture

I used to live the nytimes.....watched cnbc....contributed to the stock market......took out a mortgage...voted so the other guy didn't get in to office......leased a car.......followed sports religiously.......spent many a weekend at the mall......and then BAM!!....I'm sucked down this hole of reality....this new perspective can wear a guy down.........where is that blue pill.....i want out........

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 21:45 | 2914715 fonzannoon
fonzannoon's picture

Bullshit Kito. You don't want out. Like I said watch that Documentary "Surving Progress". It sums it up nicely. I would not trade anything for the information I know. Escpecially because I know it's gonna get dicey. Chance favors the prepared. Nature is nasty and we are living it. You are part of the herd that hears the noises first and will run. Most of the pack will get separated and taken down. Shit happens. I am not trying to glamorize it or make it sound cool I am just saying you should consider it a blessing and not a curse.

OT I find it interestng how pro Romney this crowd has become. I realize O is piece of garbage and needs to go but I thought most on here did not play into the red team blue team crap. As it comes down to the wire it seems like many are flocking to one of the teams. Kinda weird.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 22:38 | 2914800 DanDaley
DanDaley's picture

When the going gets weird the weird turn pro. Hunter S. Thompson


I'd only add that there's a bit of pro in each of us. 

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 23:37 | 2914886 Almost Solvent
Almost Solvent's picture


Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:26 | 2914236 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

"Ain't No Stopping Us Now" plays on 125th St after Obama's victory.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:41 | 2914289 knukles
knukles's picture

And if he looses?

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:49 | 2914316 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

They can sing Auld Lang Syne.  To a Disco beat.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:20 | 2914408 fuu
Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:30 | 2914423 Yardfarmer
Yardfarmer's picture

I think everyone is mis-reading the Obamas.
It's not that he's confident that he'll win the election,that makes him seem so carefree,but that he'll be done being President.

They're looking forward to their new life in their $35 Million dollar Hawaii estate and all the easy money ex-Presidents make.

Democrats really do not expect Obama to win this election. Campaign operatives in Chicago are, thus, making appropriate preparations for his imminent defeat.
Instead of Grant Park, Obama’s apparently going to have his election night event at McCormick Place…the convention center in Chicago.
* it’s separated from the City by highways and is hard to reach by anyone traveling on foot from the various “El” trains that service Chicago…which indicates this event is not intended for throngs of Obama supporters.
* there are no buses that readily service McCormick Place like they do Grant Park…so once again, this event is not being planned for the public to come and celebrate with Obama.
* McCormick Place is completely indoors and is a venue that Democrats can easily control in terms of the camera angles and stagecraft of the event…which is a big deal because losing campaigns choose small, isolated places to hold concession speeches while winning candidates are feted on election night in, well, places like Grant Park.
This is where the G-8 summit was held, so the dignitaries could be isolated and kept as far away from the public as possible in downtown Chicago. Because the only realistic way of reaching McCormick Place is by taxi (or car, if people drive themselves) this is clearly not a place Obama would be holding an election night event if he really thought he was going to win the election. How on Earth would his throngs of supporters be able to reach him if he won and the event was held here of all places?
McCormick Place is not a spot to hold a victory rally, folks…but it is the ideal spot to give a concession speech.

Wed, 10/24/2012 - 00:06 | 2914931 grid-b-gone
grid-b-gone's picture

Maybe it's the perfect place to give a victory speech when you no longer need to pander for another vote for the rest of your life.

A second term makes the throngs obsolete.

Wed, 10/24/2012 - 07:28 | 2915254 DosZap
DosZap's picture

romney will secure irans oil supply


We will soon be the largest crude producer in the world,I wonder how the ME  Oil barrons will feel when they learn, we DO NOT need them any longer?.We already have the largest known nat Gas reserves in the world.
Peak oil My Ass.

WAY past time this shoe was put on the other foot.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:12 | 2914189 kentmills
kentmills's picture

There's an easy way for America to get out of all of this...Surrender to Iceland!

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:24 | 2914227 Being Free
Being Free's picture

Reminds me of The Mouse That Roared -- classic 1959 Peter Sellers.  Maybe we should look into this.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:49 | 2914319 lakecity55
lakecity55's picture

Let's surrender to Texas.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:13 | 2914195 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

 I think most regular Z/H posters are so frustrated, that we just don't waste our time trying to educate people any more.

  I finally got a family member to realize that the door is closing. Mean while I'm trying to manage risk.

    I laugh at the(descriptions), reasons why markets move during each (global) trading session. When you watch every single axiom of trading for several years, 24-7.()   It's astonishing the shit that is fed to people.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:24 | 2914223 fonzannoon
fonzannoon's picture

Wait till tomorrow when you get a face full of facebook earnings beat as the reason the global recovery is still in tact. vomit.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:39 | 2914283 knukles
knukles's picture

Jeez Fonz, and just when I was starting to drop back into psychtic delusions what with the last season of Jersey Shore and Honey Boo Boo...
At least there'll always be Facebook


(wondering where that fellow who liked NetFlix so much been of late..)

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:57 | 2914352 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

It's still a 50 billion dollar company with 1.25 billion in revenues. Tomorrows pop will be short lived and the stock will resume it's slide to single digits. Now if we could break you of you CNBC addiction you wouldn't be burdened with their continued daily propaganda :)

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:04 | 2914372 fonzannoon
fonzannoon's picture

I want to be watching CNBC the moment all hell breaks loose. I will probably stab myself in the eye with a fork 5 or 600 times before I get the chance.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:13 | 2914394 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

Well my hat's off to you, because you are a stronger man than me. I just can't stomach more than 5 minutes is the BS... Mainly because it's a reminder to me that there was a time where I was stupid enough to believe it.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:49 | 2914299 lakecity55
lakecity55's picture

I had a nightmare the other night. Bagdhad Bob was on every channel. When I shut off the boobtoob and turned on the computer, .... well, nevermind....


".......take the red pill, rabbit......... he sneered at me........"

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:15 | 2914197 Die Weiße Rose
Die Weiße Rose's picture

" I am losing hope that we will navigate towards anything other than a hard landing...

let me translate -

I have been wishing and hoping for the fucking mofo to fall off the fiscal Cliff

crash, burn and die in the Ass and go to bloody hell

ever since 1987.


Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:16 | 2914199 the iD
the iD's picture

about 50% of the population will never catch onto the idea or catch on after its far too late.

the milgram experiment:

the stanford prison "experiment":


Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:16 | 2914200 Rainman
Rainman's picture

Don't be startled by the number of dummies. Big Pharma's got a whole country of humans all fukked up on Percocet, oxycontin and a variety of happy pills . Reality is good only for attracting new customers.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:21 | 2914215 DRT RD
DRT RD's picture

Do not forget Adderral, ritalin, dexadrine, and stratera.  When those quit working, the doc's love to add prozac to the mix! 

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:56 | 2914348 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

Helpful tip: Adderall is just time-release dexedrine.

You can dissolve 'em in your coffee and they're as good as the mil-issue go-pills.  They leave a gum in the bottom of the cup, tho.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:16 | 2914202 The big unzip
The big unzip's picture

Iceland dont want us now!

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:16 | 2914204 rosethorn
rosethorn's picture

Oddly, in spite of weak employment data, in some industries corporations are still trying to peddle the idea that there are labor shortages...Fake Labor Shortage Redux gives some examples.  Think of corps that hire H-1B visa holders, for example.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:23 | 2914217 Tinky
Tinky's picture

I'm inclined to believe that the above-outlined, seemingly unavoidable, looming catastrophe is primarily Lance Armstrong's fault.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:36 | 2914272 knukles
knukles's picture

That's dopey

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:44 | 2914293 lakecity55
lakecity55's picture

I have a cunning plan to preserve gas in cubes of amber for long-term storage. Like PMs.

--B. Adder

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:44 | 2914294 semperfi
semperfi's picture

nah - Bush's fault

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:46 | 2914302 nmewn
nmewn's picture

Big Birds fault.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:07 | 2914379 LMAOLORI
LMAOLORI's picture




LOL time to get rid of that Crony Capitalist Big Bird Big Bird makes more money than Mitt Romney, but is still on the government dole 


Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:26 | 2914417 nmewn
nmewn's picture

I love it when they get caught in their own web of bullshit.

“First of all, the sequester is not something I proposed.”- O'Barry last night.

Bob Woodward says otherwise...

“Then-OMB Director Jack Lew, now the White House chief of staff, and White House Legislative Affairs Director Rob Nabors pitched the idea to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), Woodward writes,” according to a Sept. 7 story appearing on the Politico website.

“Under the deal, which Republicans accepted after several rounds of bargaining, the federal debt ceiling was raised — staving off a potential financial crisis.”

O'Barry, is an "audacious" liar. I guess he figures people are to lazy to check the veracity of his statements.

Hey!!!...did you know the military has LESS bayonets than in 1916?...ROTFL!!!

The Audacity of a Dope.

Wed, 10/24/2012 - 17:52 | 2916928 Blazing Saddles
Blazing Saddles's picture

Indeed. It is very easy for the liar to point at the truth and say LIAR!!  Then the average American, who pays zero attention to any issue that is remotely pertinent, will assume that they are all full of shit and ignore the entire issue.  Liberals have been pulling this move flawlessly for years but O is the master.  You are forced to resort to these kinds of tactics when you are running on failure and incompetence.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 20:35 | 2914576 mvsjcl
mvsjcl's picture

Big Bird is a very effective "teacher," and deserves every cent he "earns."

Wed, 10/24/2012 - 01:58 | 2915036 RSBriggs
RSBriggs's picture

Sure - all $450 million of it.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:34 | 2914246 stiler
stiler's picture

The core of my views is shaped by the idea that the very thing being sought, more economic growth (and exponential growth, at that), is exactly the root of the problem. 

the same idea as 'you get what you deserve, America.' For going after mammon instead of the spiritual.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:33 | 2914260 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

The article is a weird sort of bait and switch.  We have peak debt, not peak energy.

Peak coal?  Peak fire wood?  Peak nat gas?  End of innovation?

America hasn't even begun to conserve energy. 

Negawatts, Bitches.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:23 | 2914405 toomanyfakecons...
toomanyfakeconservatives's picture

I agree. It's debt (actually the monetary system) which is strangling us to death. All the fools who believe nuclear power or green energy is somehow going to produce the billions of tons of plastic, rubber, chemicals, and so forth that come from oil and are INEXTRICABLY INTERTWINED into civilization are just not thinking straight.


Peak Debt vs. Peak Oil... watch and learn...

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 20:43 | 2914585 mvsjcl
mvsjcl's picture

I still remember when bags were brown and made of paper. People, usually teens on their first job, used to put things into them and follow you to your mom's or dad's car. Then they'd put those paper bags into your car for you! They'd smile after you handed them a silver quarter.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:33 | 2914261 Blazing Saddles
Blazing Saddles's picture

National debt will be a problem long before this issue materializes. I agree with all your assertions about the current trends but you ignore innovation. As fossil fuels become less and less profitable you can bet your ass that exxon mobil and the like will figure out something else to sell. It's human nature. We will find a solution when we are pressed to do so. We are still on oil right now because it remains extremely lucrative for those selling it. Once the extraction costs exceed the level that can reasonably paid, something else will come along. The biggest corporation in the world is not simply going to pack up shop and go home when the oil starts to dry up. That is a very silly notion indeed. And as someone above me noted, we can use nuclear power and other options (as the cost of technology falls like it always does) to fill much of the void. The bottom line is, people will figure out how to create more green space once they are suffering.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:09 | 2914385 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

I agree once the price of alternative energy is competative with petroleum then innovation will kick in high gear and green energy will be embraced. It won't happen until then. The sad thing is there will probably be a lot less of us on the way to that point as the resource wars heat up.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:09 | 2914387 LudwigVon
LudwigVon's picture

While supporting the vast majority of Martenson's theories, the Mathusian ideas claiming impossibility of a rising standard of living for an increasing population v energy supply has been soundly refuted by history. De-centralized Liquid Floride Thorium reactors (LFTR) will easily push costs of energy near $.04KwH, to compete with coal and natural gas, allowing for high energy intensity applications such as desalination salt water to fresh for irrigating agriculture, and atmopheric carbon capture to liquid fuel, unlocking scarce supplies. Funny how the elephant oil fields come online as price broadens the economics of extraction. As prices of oil rise, it becomes more cost effective to seek alternatives, many of which have already been proven out.

4 minutes on the OakRidge National Labs LFTR project:

This idea that energy impacts short term trends is palatable, but rewriting Malthus is embarrassing. Careful Chris. ;)

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 20:44 | 2914589 ljag
ljag's picture

When they ran out of rubber to make tires, they used oil. Now what? We litterally have to re-invent the wheel! cool, huh?

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:13 | 2914393 vix is for kids
vix is for kids's picture

Right on, Blazing Saddles (the poster with the unfortunate initials BS)!  Artificial photosynthesis, or something very much like it, is being pursued in dozens of universities and laboratories around the world.  As a mechanical engineer who utilizes the conversion of potential energy to kinetic energy every day, I am confident that this great store house of abundant energy will someday (certainly within Martenson's 150 year time span) be tapped, efficiently and economically.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:28 | 2914397 toomanyfakecons...
toomanyfakeconservatives's picture

Nice try... but plastics, rubber, fertilizers, petrochemicals, grease, fuels and a host of other live-giving, life-sustaining products are absolutely interwoven into human existence. Nuclear plants and "green energy" certainly doesn't pump out billions tons of plastic, rubber, and chemicals like oil does. In fact, try building a nuclear plant without oil-fired bulldozers and oil-based chemicals. Not happening. About the only thing you almost got right is that debt (actually the monetary system) will rain on the parade long before the oil runs dry.

For the best peak oil/peak everything explanantion, look here:


PS- There is no such thing as "human nature". Nurture matters far more than nature. Human nature right up there with the "DNA determines everything" lie.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:48 | 2914451 poor fella
poor fella's picture

Exactly! Sorry, there IS NO app for that. We're not going to cover millions of acres with artificial photosynthe-anythings... Might as well grow REAL TREES and run wood burning vehicles...

We will have technology and we'll have energy, but things will be smaller, fuel sippers, low voltage, slower, etc.

Think of when technology enters a very poor area. It will be that in reverse. People start with the well-made products that last and make life easier - like a STOVE or a moped with a basket. Not electric cars and solar systems for the flat screen they dream of having.

Who would repair all this super-tech-shit the people above are talking about? When's the last time you sent an iPOD in for repair or an iPHONE? We don't NEED as much energy if we didn't have planned obsolescence.

The only technology we should wish for is to be completely off-grid and able to homestead. In dreams and movies of the future, are the only places we're going to see this Technotopia... (AS IF billions of people can live on the planet and HAVE IT ALL).   sheeeesh. I expect things to look more like Blade Runner. Even our precious Moore's Law will top out in most of our lifetimes.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 22:56 | 2914831 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

The big conflict is like this: the higher the population density becomes, the greater the *multiplier* you can create with energy investment.  Moving incredibly high concentrations of energy to the "center of everything" makes sense when the energy-processing in "cities" (or "companies," as such things can increasingly distribute?) is four orders of magnitude beyond the energy efficiency of the "distributed" populations.  (Meaning the rural and suburban...)

Which "quality of life" do you want to pay for? 

Maybe there's 24x7 access to information about everything occurring of any global or niche significance...or maybe there's a nice warm and well-fed 3000 sq. ft. "home" to 4 humans, paid for by the ones who have found a way to shuffle electronic symbols around and "earn" the digital scrip which can easily BUY the cooks and the cleaners of that homestead...

My impression is that: as post-industrial "wealthy humans," we're titrating that equilibrium right now.

If you're in the USA and your concept of "hardship" hasn't involved hunger and/or death/murder, it's ALL downhill from here.

Wed, 10/24/2012 - 17:01 | 2916804 Blazing Saddles
Blazing Saddles's picture


Yes, clearly the debt-based monetary system is the biggest disease the country faces but the debt itself is the symptom that will kill us.  Good luck getting the politicians and bankers to agree to end the fed though.  This will be a much more significant driver of energy costs in the coming years.  As for rubber and the likes, innovations like oil-free tires are already on the way.

"Sumitomo Rubber launched in Japan tires in which petrochemicals account for 3 percent of raw materials...How to produce the remaining 3-percent part from other natural resources but oil is now under development"

Wild predictions that the sky is falling have also always been interwoven into human existence.  However, we are still here. Acute pessimism will definitely not be the path out of this mess.  We cannot begin to guess the technologies that may come along in the future.  

Lastly, of course nurture is a stronger influence than nature but you would have to be an only child to believe that there is no such thing as human nature.  Siblings are the perfect example that nurture is not the only force at work.  Besides, no one has to teach you to move your hand when its being burned.  This is human nature.  Similarly, people will react to conditions that are causing them to suffer in the future, just as they always have. 

Wed, 10/24/2012 - 00:50 | 2914989 grid-b-gone
grid-b-gone's picture

We don't even need a whole lot of innovation. How many warm, 2,500 square ft houses do we have with only 1 or two people living in them?

For many issues, we resist even the appearance of taking a step backward. Take the USPS fiscal situation. We started to hear discussions of dropping Saturday delivery and moving toward cluster boxes that would streamline mail delivery.

Instead, we got a drop in junk mail rates to boost volume. So, the solution became more wasted paper, more wasted delivery fuel, and more wasted landfill space for choosing a 'growth' solution. 

There will be innovation, but not fast enough to offset rising energy costs and our entire oil-based economy, but like Dorothy, we will find the bulk of the solution was under our control the whole time.

As with buying gold 10 years ago, now is the time to cut energy use. Skip the $15K solar panels if the thought makes you apoplectic. Just start with a $10 LED bulb for an 80% savings per pop. 

Yeah, Ben will put it in his heuristic model as proof that his policies are working, but do it anyway. A lower electric bill will help cover your increasing, though non-core, food bill.

Necessity will spur innovation, but cost, scarcity, and inconvenience need to increase before alternatives are considered and adopted.    

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:43 | 2914264 poor fella
poor fella's picture

Wall of Voodoo's "Call of the West" seems about right...

Right around sundown...
He got dropped off on a street in town
Where a grey old man looked him up and down and said,
"Son, this ain't no western movie matinee
You're a long way off from yippie-yi-yay
'cause I can tell at a glance, you're not from 'round these parts
You've got a green look about 'cha, that's a gringo for starts
Sometimes the only thing a western savage understands
Are whiskey and rifles and an unarmed man,
Like you"

"You've come a long way, I know
You've got a longer drive ahead
Through the bones of the buffalo
Through the claims of the western dead,
Just like the spokes of a wheel
You'll spin 'round with the rest
You'll hear the drums and the brush of steel
You'll hear the call of the west, call of the west"

If only there was 'a further west' to go. Opportunity lay there I heard.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:34 | 2914266 A Lunatic
A Lunatic's picture

Relax. This is nothing that death cannot overcome..............

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:37 | 2914275 edb5s
edb5s's picture

I may be missing something, but I've been looking at that chart for ten minutes and I can't figure out what the fuck any of it means. 

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:25 | 2914362 poor fella
poor fella's picture

Cheap energy is toast.

If it takes a barrel of oil to produce a barrel, it's game over. I think it's garbage hearing how America will be the new Saudi Arabia because of shale. It's energy intensive to convert. Probably negative. I guess finding a million barrels worth of shale and using +800k converting the rest to liquid form is ok....   I don't know the numbers, but it's been a long time since we've seen a gusher and didn't have to pump an ocean under the desert to create head pressure.

I REALLY wanted to hear what the Obamney's and their two children (biden and ryan) would say if asked about Peak Oil...

Long term vision, planning, and science have no place in the U.S. of Inc.

btw: that picture is messed up, this is the chart, with CM's comments:

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 20:47 | 2914431 socalbeach
socalbeach's picture

X axis is EO/EI or energy out / energy in.

Y axis is (EO-EI)/EO expressed as a %, not (EO-EI)/EI like you might expect.

So when the X axis goes from 3 to 2 to 1, the Y axis goes from 66% to 50% to 0%.

But the green part of the graph should rise to 98% when the X axis gets to 50 on the left.

So if you couldn't figure it out that's understandable.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:38 | 2914278 evolutionx
evolutionx's picture

The Bundesbank's fear of Fed tungsten bars

In response to public pressure, the Bundesbank, the German central bank, now wants to bring "parts" of Germany’s gold reserves home and verify their authenticity. Is fear rife in Frankfurt of counterfeit gold bars from the USA which are actually made of tungsten?

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:39 | 2914280 chump666
chump666's picture

It will become a violent time.

Best prepare if you can.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:42 | 2914282 lakecity55
lakecity55's picture

Simply reverse all the Soviet shit O'Commie did and the Spice will flow.

We will be a long way from home, but we will be on the way.

Send the Baron back to Giedi Prime in 2 weeks.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:59 | 2914355 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

So you think we were in good shape in 2008, huh?

Jeebus Cripes you're a moron.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 21:06 | 2914637 cbxer55
cbxer55's picture

You sound, and look, like a rabbit I once chased. Rascal towed my shed onto a railroad track! Sheeeeesh! Spice sure flew then.

Just call me MUD!

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 23:52 | 2914911 Pareto
Pareto's picture

+1 for the reference to Dune.  fuck i forgot about that flcik, and there are probably legitimate reasons as to why i forgot.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:40 | 2914286 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

 Having fun Tylers.

Eyes Wide Shut, "Between a rock and a hard place" <
Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:48 | 2914310 dolph9
dolph9's picture

We've been sold a bill of goods.

50% of the "stuff" in American life is bullshit.  But we've gone along with it for so long that we can no longer tell the difference.

Eventually, if all you produce is bullshit, you'll go bankrupt.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:57 | 2914353 goodrich4bk
goodrich4bk's picture

Yes, but that is a competitive advantage.  We are competing with all other developed economies and can still produce twice as much as we need.  Therefore, we can cut our consumption in half and suffer no real loss.  That's why energy efficiencies retrofits are such a good idea --- it is almost "free" energy.  For example, I spent $8 a bulb on LED recessed lights in my home that pay for themselves in less than 4 years but last for over 20.  That's sixteen years of free lighting.

Or check out Ambri, the metal battery that Gates just invested in.  Or the new "waste-free" nuclear reactor being developed at MIT.  There are great advances to come, my friend.  Try not to give in to despair!

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:49 | 2914314 steve from virginia
steve from virginia's picture



... the world towards which we are rapidly moving with new petroleum finds being deeper, tighter, smaller, and generally more difficult to get to and extract, thereby offering lower net energy returns than in the past. (EROI or Energy Return On Investment)


... With success measured by the sale of more and more automobiles.


As for inflation ... how is adding more credit burdens to those who cannot repay (or service) current debt going to push prices? Declining EROI is a reduction in price ipso facto: such a reduction can be seen today in declining prices paid for petroleum as customers are unable to (borrow to) afford it.


What is failing is the automobiles ... just get rid of them and be done with it.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 20:09 | 2914529 thomasincincy
thomasincincy's picture

In my city they were constructing a underground subway tunnel beneath the the city in the 1920's. The construction was halted in the year 1927 which was prior to the great depression. They ran a article about here with my local internet newspaper a few years ago. I spilt the beans about it and got all kinds of lies in return. Like money ran out, the tunnels were too small for the cars...blah blah blah. It was being built during the roaring twenties!

Anyway, It's not "automobile" it's "greed". The city's landscape would have probably looked much different than it does today and probably not the problems they have either. The New Deal

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:52 | 2914331 goodrich4bk
goodrich4bk's picture

Chris makes a good argument, but it's only that.  An alternative future might combine the newest "waste free" nuclear technology from MIT to produce loads of cheap electricity within ten years, the liquid metal battery just developed by Ambri to store solar and wind energy that is now price competitive without subsidies, and a variety of ongoing developments to take advantage of the 70% lower cost of running electric cars vs. ICE cars ---- and that's at current prices not the jacked up prices that Chris predicts.  Add in LED lighting, heat exchangers and conservation retrofits and we could halve our energy consumption within ten years with just the technology we have today by replacing our legacy systems with today's more efficient systems.

Moreover, of all the ocuntries in the world, the U.S. has the largest deposit of a hidden and very inexpensive form of alternative energy.  The energy I'm talking about, of course, is the energy that is presently wasted.  We are like the largest elk with the largest rack --- in Spring molting, we can shed the rack and outrun the rest of the pack because our strength has been build carrying around that enormous rack.  Europe is far behind us with many efficiency efforts already completed.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 19:59 | 2914499 toomanyfakecons...
toomanyfakeconservatives's picture

Wake me up when nuclear power or "green energy" starts producing the billions of tons of plastics, rubber, chemicals, fertilizers, and other life-sustaining products that are so interwoven into our civilization.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 21:24 | 2914342 honestann
honestann's picture

Yes, the problem is human stupidity.  But no, the problem is not lack of energy sources with positive net return on energy invested.  The earth is a freaking huge sphere of molten hot magma with a tiny thin crust on top.  If tapped, there's enough energy for... well... a lot longer than necessary to evolve into a society that mostly lives elsewhere (in space habitats, other planets, asteroid complexes, etc).  And this is only one of several ways to expand available energy.

But sure, if man is too stupid to "do something different" to acquire energy, there is a problem.  Just as there would have been if mankind had insisted transportation be handled exclusively by horses and sailing ships all these years.

And why is human stupidity the problem?  Because predators-DBA-government and predators-DBA-corporations (including central banks) have manipulated things that way.  How did so few have so much power that they could utterly destroy the nature and character of mankind?  Simple.  Give anyone the power to create fiat, fake, fraud, fiction, fantasy, fractional-reserve debt-notes out of thin air... and you have created the most powerful and evil force on planet earth.

It is all so simple, really.  Either exterminate predators, or they take over everything.  And so they have.  That is their nature, sheeple.

Wed, 10/24/2012 - 00:16 | 2914949 toomanyfakecons...
toomanyfakeconservatives's picture

You'll get no argument from me. Mankind has an antique debt-slavery monetary system that is light years behind our social and technical capabilities. The system belongs in a museum.


Thank Sam Colt, the founders, and our men and women in uniform that there are still far more good guys with guns than bad guys with guns in this time of need.

Wed, 10/24/2012 - 10:39 | 2915689 Wave-Tech
Wave-Tech's picture

Well said.  The reality of this situation leaves people little chioce beyond the pursuit of rational and prudent measures to fend off the affects of the predators. 

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:56 | 2914343 vix is for kids
vix is for kids's picture

Professor Martenson's predictions for declining net energy is no doubt quite accurate for petroleum, but superimpose the curves for coal and natural gas, and a longer plateau for fossil energy emerges. 

The next 10 or so years will probably experience the setbacks to agriculture, travel, and industrialization that he envisions, but in another human generation, I fully expect that conversion of solar energy will re-supply mankind with abundant energy.  Since necessity of the mother of invention, don't be surprised to see great strides foward in this promising area.

Tue, 10/23/2012 - 18:56 | 2914347 optimator
optimator's picture

Very soon LED lighting will replace what we have now.  Just take a look at every 400 watt sodium lamp while you're driving around and see what that means to energy consumption.  The biggest consumer of oil is our own U.S. Air Force.  Their flying will be cut back, and much more use will be made of flight simulators.  When the oil finally runs out in future we will see a reduction in standard of living.  Look around you and see all the products in plastics of oil by products and you see what is before us long term.  remeber, the future is hard to predict simply because it hasn't happen yet.  In 1898 they said that cities like New York were doomed because of the rate of growth and quoted on example.  The increase in horse manure alone would doom a New York at some point.

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