We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Wednesday, March 18. 2020
10 Insane Hikes Around the World
Middlebury students tear down local bar's American flag, 'vandalize' campus amid national crisis
The 85 Universities that Discriminate on the Basis of Sex
U.S. Airlines Looking To Pick Your Pockets For $50 Billion
US ‘big 3’ airlines well-positioned to survive possible coronavirus crisis shakeout, analysts say
Amazon Suspends All Shipments Other Than Medical Supplies, Household Staples
Looking to hire 100,000 people
Bartenders and restaurant servers are screwed due to coronavirus
Trump Calls Out NY Times For Missing Half A Quote
BIDEN: "Number one, no more subsidies for the fossil fuel industry, no more drilling on federal lands, no more drilling, including offshore, no ability for the oil industry to continue to drill, period, ends, number one."
In other words, dependent on foreign oil
With new technologies and techniques, America’s shale industry will survive this latest crisis—and prove an ever-bigger threat to Saudi Arabian and Russian oil producers.
Clyburn Compares Trump to Hitler, Warns U.S. ‘Could Very Well Go the Way of Germany in the 1930s’
Dems Call for ‘War’ on Coronavirus, But Military Says Help is Limited
Beijing Fears COVID-19 Is Turning Point for China, Globalization:
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If WE rethink our dependence on China then at least SOMETHING good will have come out of this.
I sure hope that happens. Also, I hope people quit listening to the MSM with out skepticism. Realize that they have a political bias, and are trying to sell beer and shampoo.
Someone tell those Middlebury students that unless they're descended from Vandals or Wends, committing Vandalism is an act of cultural appropriation.
And why isn't the word "Vandalism" an ethnic slur anyway?
Unless they start catching and punishing these kids as well as Antifa it will only escalate.
The Administration should take away their private Ski Lift. Spoiled brats.
Re: With new technologies and techniques, America’s shale industry will survive this latest crisis—and prove an ever-bigger threat to Saudi Arabian and Russian oil producers.
I was really expecting this article to bolster its argument by showing a decline in the cost of oil production via shale or at least an estimate on the current cost of production.
I found some numbers from the Dallas Fed from May 2019 (https://www.dallasfed.org/research/economics/2019/0521) that said that the cost of producing a barrel of oil fell $2 over the previous year to an average of $50. Given that, if oil stays in the $30 range, many operations will have to shut down. It's hard to imagine software cutting the cost of production in half within a year or two.
I think it's more likely that Saudi Arabia's economic pain tolerance (whatever pain there is) and political pressures will play a bigger role in future oil prices than technology over the short to intermediate term.
Too many of these smaller shale/frac independent producers are leveraged to the hilt, and playing the running-cash-flow game (keep drilling, a little more production, made the nut this month, whew!). A good number of them will default when they miss numbers on just a couple of months of production revenue. The industry has been at the outskirts of Shakeout Town for a while now. But the best cure for low oil prices is....low oil prices. The virus-related consumption levels will go away in 3-4 months probably, and depletion never stops. Low oil prices will drive consumption up. The Saudis can pump for pennies on the barrel. The Russians need about $40. The shakeout in USA will slow down innovation for a while but it will come back. Oil should really be around $60-70 to support a stable industry here at home, IMHO.
Thanks for the interesting shale article. I'm just waiting to read how a Saudi refinery had an "accident" or some drones just came flying by. Don't think Russia is going to like this very much. Who has bigger cash reserves, the Saudis or the Russians?
It may well be unfair and an over reaction to shut down stores and restaurants. I have a suggest that may be much more effective and in the long run a much better choice.
Instead of bailing out businesses and sending everyone $1000 a month. Take that close to a trillion dollars that the federal government wants to spend and put it 100% into hospitals and medical staff. Pay for every hospital to double their infrastructure and their capacity. Pay for every medical school, nursing school and health care teaching facility to double their students. Pay every working health care worker a "hazardous duty pay" of perhaps another $1000 or more a month and double that if they will take on 50% more hours a month. Subsidize other emergency efforts to ramp up immediate increased capacity and care.
I would like to see some long term benefit from the huge amount of money the federal government is going to dole out. Can anyone actually point to something, anything that the trillions spent to overcome the 2009 economic collapse has to show for that spending? Where did the trillions go? I would love to see a forensic accounting of where that money went down to the last penny. I suspect a lot of connected people became millionaires. I would hate to see this new federal largesse be wasted with nothing to show from it.
> Pay for every medical school, nursing school and health care teaching facility to double their students.
Talk to the AMA. who has effectively held the number of medical students -and thus physicians- constant for MANY years, because....
Supply-v-Demand & market forces anyone?
A little off your topic, but...
Little known outside the industry...but a lot of doctors are paid on 'production' (i.e. the doctor equivalent of lawyer billable hours). Now if you're in a specialty that can shift to hospital work, you might be OK. But one of my kids is OB/GYN, and while they're OK (just out-of-residency and on salary for the first couple of years while building patient base), her (older) practice mates have seen most of the non-emergency GYN work dry up and are getting antsy about their income.
I think the money would be better spent on bringing the manufacturing of medical supplies back home. With no drugs and supplies, doctors can’t do much.
That too! Anything and everything that can make us better prepared. But don't throw a trillion bucks down that same rabbit hole that we usually do whenever there is a crisis.
re Bartenders and restaurant servers are screwed due to coronavirus
It's not just them:
Another industry that will be seeking a bailout:
Hotel industry could lose 4 million jobs from coronavirus impact
What we are doing to our economy is a disaster and may well be catastrophic.
re Stanford prof: Coronavirus may be less deadly than we think — and too mild to justify these aggressive countermeasures
Our ruling masters have invoked the Precautionary Principle in this instance. The precautionary principle says that when the risks of a particular activity are unclear or unknown, assume the worst and avoid the activity. It is essentially a policy of risk avoidance.
At this point they are too invested in this strategy to ever consider the possibility that they are in error.
Like Global Warming, "The science is settled" and the debate is closed.
Another similarity is that the media is driving the panic. And the 'predictions' driving the media panic are computers spitting out the future based on whatever data is being fed to them. JMO
The Washington political class are crisis habituated and risk averse. They will never consider the possibility that they are in error because they have declared that to be impossible, and they know better than the rest of us. There is no greater virtue than addressing the crisis, and no greater vice than actually solving it. As a Director I once worked for repeatedly admonished me, "Don't confuse the situation with facts!"
Stanford prof clearly hasn't seen Italian hospitals overflowing and having to choose which patients to leave to die untreated.
Because that's what's going on there, and will be going on in other countries within a week or two.
And Italy's hospital system is very very good.
Amazon Suspends All Shipments Other Than Medical Supplies, Household Staples
I think this has been widely misinterpreted because people frame the reference in terms of Amazon's retail sales. They are suspending shipments of products other than essential supplies into their fulfillment centers.
Instapundit's post discussing this Quote below is from the Amazon announcement.
We are seeing increased online shopping and as a result some products such as household staples and medical supplies are out of stock. With this in mind, we are temporarily prioritizing household staples, medical supplies and other high-demand products coming into our fulfillment centers so that we can more quickly receive, restock, and ship these products to customers.
For products other than these, we have temporarily disabled shipment creation. We are taking a similar approach with retail vendors.
This will be in effect today through April 5, 2020, and we will let you know once we resume regular operations. Shipments created before today will be received at fulfillment centers.
"In other words, dependent on foreign oil "
Nah, just declare you're "going renewable", ban all internal combustion engines and plastics, and call it a victory.
That's effectively what the Dutch government did when they decided to close all coal fired power plants by 2025 without replacement by anything else.
They just declared that the Netherlands would use 50% less electricity than in 1995 by 2030, without any indication of how that'd come about.
Of course the only way it can come about is by rationing and regular blackouts, which I'm sure are coming but being left for the next government to order as there are elections coming in 2021 and no party in power wants to be remembered at the polls as the one telling people they will only have electricity for 4 hours a day.
I love how Biden is writing his own anti-Biden advertising. All Republicans have to do is quote Biden.
Clyburn is worried Trump could become Hitler. He's way too late on this. Bush was already Hitler, and Reagan before him. There's a whole room full of Hitlers in the Democratic apartment. There's no room for Trump to get in there even if he were Hitler.
Bush was already Hitler, and Reagan before him
I remember a now familiar chant, after Regan was elected:
"Not My President !!"
::::: The more it changes, the more it stays the same