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  1. 12 points
    The irony of the Mueller investigation that was demanded by Democrats because they thought it would show Trump colluded with Russia to win the Presidency is that it has blown up in their faces by exposing in greater detail how Obama and the Deep State attempted first, to throw an election in favor of one candidate, Hillary Clinton, and second, attempted a coup once Trump was elected via investigations and false claims. Once Trump won the election, the Deep State used their accomplices in the msm to convince the American public that Donald J Trump stole the election with the collaboration of the Russians. In this way they sought to remove him by impeachment. It turns out the Deep State were the ones who were acting as agents of Russia seeking to tear America apart. Consider: John Brennan, Obama’s CIA director, by his own admission, played a key role in instigating the investigation of Trump before the election. In the aftermath of the election Brennan has repeatedly called Trump a traitor on social media and old media. We now know in August 2016 Brennan gave a private briefing to Sen. Harry Reid. Subsequently, Reid sent a letter to the FBI which included info that clearly came from the now infamous dossier, manufactured by ex-British spy Christopher Steele and Fusion GPS contractor. This dossier would later be included in the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant application that was used to justify investigations into Trump, his campaign, and his family. It now appears very likely Brennan later lied under oath that he did not know who commissioned the dossier. This dossier was originally funded by none other than Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party. Since the conclusion of the Mueller report has come out Brennan, probably fearing an investigation into his actions pre/post election, now says he had “bad information”. A more accurate description might be that he was willfully spreading disinformation to bring down a President. James Comey himself described this dossier as “salacious” and “unverified” yet he did not bother to have the FBI attempt to verify the contents of the dossier. This didn't stop Comey from lying 4 times to the FISA court that ex-British spy Steele was the source of an article by “journalist” Isikoff, which was used to corroborate claims in his own dossier. So Comey, in essence, told the FISA court that the Steele dossier had been corroborated by…Steele. Some background: Steele also worked for Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska. So the only person who had any verifiable evidence of working with the Russians in any capacity is an ex-British spy, contracted to manufacture a false dossier on behalf of Hillary Clinton to smear Trump and later weaponized to impeach Trump after he won the election. Comey lied to the FISA court so he could obtain, as he did, a warrant to spy on Carter Page (Trump staffer) and the Trump family during the election. Moreover, in addition to Comey, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, former Deputy Director of the FBI Andrew McCabe, and former Attorney General Sally Yates were required to sign off on the FISA warrant application. They are either incompetent or were engaged in a conspiracy but regardless, this was a fraud on the FISA court. Bruce Ohr, a senior official at the time at the Justice Department, acted as a middleman between the FBI and Steele. He passed along information from his wife Nellie Ohr, also a Fusion GPS contractor like Steele, with, presumably, unverified and false info regarding Trump and his campaign. The FBI later terminated Steele’s relationship as a confidential informant with them after he revealed this relationship to the press. However, for up to 1.5 years after, Bruce Ohr continued to act as middleman between Steele and the FBI, even after Mueller took over the investigation. Americans should be marching in the streets at this attempted coup but we are so doped with mindless entertainment that we no longer care. We are becoming a system where as long as you don’t challenge the 2 party system you are allowed your freedom to make money and to say whatever you want so long as it doesn't have consequences. Any more details of Mueller's report due to be released by AG Barr are likely to reveal more of the rotted core of the Deep State and their machinations and not, as Democrats think, damaging info about Trump.
  2. 7 points
  3. 7 points
    In my opinion, Russiagate was a fraud and a hoax. However, I do not view "the Deep State" is a monolithic entity. I believe there are various factions and interests, some more in common with others, and it's never clear in the shadowy netherworld of intelligence and intrigue. What we see on the media are the figureheads and cartoon cutouts - the Ted Lieus, the Adam Schiffs, the Muellers, the Maddows, etc. In my opinion, the Trump election reflects a slight conflict precisely within the 'Deep State' factions. The neoliberal establishment that has long since reigned does not like Trump for various reasons, including likely his geopolitical opinions. The Russiagate narrative served to vilify Russia has the number enemy. Unfortunately, most in the American ruling class were and still are asleep to the fact that the greatest geopolitical rival and threat to the U.S. actually comes from China, not Russia. Former candidates like Mitt Romney are completely oblivious to the geopolitical tectonic shifts that are currently underway that will determine the fate of the 21st century. Russiagate did a whole lot of nothing, but the lasting effect of Russiagate has been online censorship of mostly right-leaning personalities who dare questioned the official media narrative. Social media sites have largely silenced or banned those who did not necessarily tow the main line. Russiagate will soon be in the public memoryhole, but you can bet the censorship tactics of most of the social media corporations will remain intact. Although I do not agree with Trump on most items, he was correct to see China as the true geopolitical rival to the U.S. and his (at least) verbal overtures to woo Russia could be viewed as an attempt to mend ties with Russia. If the U.S. has any hope of trying to stay relevant not just as a superpower but as a country, it will need to realize the reality and court proper alliances on the grand chessboard, especially Russia.
  4. 7 points
    We don't really have a two party system in this country. There's only the party of incumbency, then wealthy retirement as "lobbyist" or "consultant". We see Obama on billionaires' yachts and don't blink an eye. Al Gore is worth half a billion from a net worth of 2.5 million when he left office. The Clintons control a $2.5 billion fortune much of it protected by the paper thin veneer of a "foundation" from the tax man. Because when they ran on higher taxes on the rich, they meant thee, not themselves. It's going to take awhile to figure out how Paul Ryan was bought off, but bought off he was. In some ways, the biggest tragedy of 9/11 was that flight 93 couldn't find Congress. Shuffling the deck might have been the best thing for the country. Politicians aren't our friends
  5. 6 points
    Yeah, I know I'm a moderator here and I'm walking a fine line sometimes. My rulebook for moderating this forum is the forum guidelines, a common sense list of basic does and don't to keep a professional forum civil, while at the same time encouraging open and feisty discussions. Running with scissors, but keeping the pointy parts pointed at the ground. That said.... good old George Carlin:
  6. 5 points
    Shale Technology Luddites will always be in denial. Technology will prevail in US Shale. All these experts of oil industry sagacity will eventually have to concede to the shale oil miracle. I know, I know Chevron and Occidental want Anadarko so they can loose money. Right ? Warren Buffet wants a piece of the Permian. He's never been a very smart investor. Yea. Anadarko lost money because they were run by a Board of Directors made up of a bunch of Hedgefund types that knew nothing about the oil industry. THEY DIDN'T HAVE THE KNOWLEDGE OR COMMON SENSE TO IMPLEMENT THE NEW TECHNOLOGY. Using more sand is hardly "new technology". The technology leaders new wells in Permian are breakeven in low $20's. EXXON targeting $15 breakeven shale oil. Oil Technology is not standing still. Many producers overpaid for acreage. Many piled cash back into more overpriced acreage. They will merge, be bought or go under. Technology and new "manufacturing" drilling methodologies cost money. SIZE MATTERS. The "good 'ol days" of 80% , 100% or better rate of return (IRR) are gone. It's a real business that will now require size and capital. Also, add the fact that offshore deep water from this point forward breakeven below $30 and there is a lot of money to be made in the segment for those that understand where it's going. Granted the Service Companies are in a difficult position. Back during '12 or '13 when there were 1500+ rigs drilling for oil and gas the big three were making a killing. But success draws competitors. Many of their field managers looked at the huge profits and said, "I can do that". It created many small startups buying 5 or 10 rigs and undercutting big boys prices. The large service company's then focused on the more analytical and seismic end of business. It didn't and will never make up for the loss of drilling business.
  7. 5 points
    Essentially all of America's shale oil basins are leased, delineated and getting hammered with wells; how long can that last? The choice being made between marginally (un) profitable shale oil development and exploration and/or infill development of existing conventional fields to arrest decline is ultimately going to have dire consequences for America, and the world. It's great now (except the debt, +$18 billion a year interest on that debt and what else? oh yeah, the 84% decline rates the first 30 months of production) but its always a good idea to imagine what the world and America will look like five years from now. Parents tend to worry about that sort of thing. Service companies have been getting whacked trying to make all these tech "miracles" work for the shale oil industry; how long can that last? Productivity, by the way, is not the same as profitability. I am awaiting 4-5 other earnings reports, several big ones today...the number of shale oil companies that lost money 1Q19 is staggering. In fact, all pure shale players in the Permian, so far, did lose money.
  8. 5 points
    Topic has not mentioned Canadian oil production. Just about same production as Iran. It will increase with new pipelines. https://financesonline.com/top-10-oil-producing-countries-in-the-world-wheres-the-greatest-petroleum-dominion/ Dirty oil campaign has made great attempts to stop competiion from the oil sands. Rockefellers via Tides Foundation, paid protest organizers, money to First Nations. All under pretense of Global Warming so Trudeau could justify a Carbon Tax (which saps the Canadian economy). New Alberta premier Jason Kenney is aware of the game being played by foreign interests. He is raising awareness to get pipelines built. Canada's best climate path forward is to reduce consumption. In the meantime, they can keep their fair market share so the ecomomy can support needed changes without the stiffling carbon tax. (Canada is losing oil royalties so needs to raise taxes due to rising debt.) Trump wants the Keystone XL for national security reasons and to maintain stable prices. The price of gasoline has the biggest leverage on average consumers disposable income. US and Canada are expansive countries and need less expensive fuel for commerce. OPEC+ mission is to maximize their profit. "He who has the gold makes the rules." If they give lip service to support climate change initiatives to stop the oil sands, its only to increase their market share. Targeting the oil sands keeps the price a bit higher for other producers.
  9. 5 points
    Like everything else on this forum, and particularly this thread, from the beginning, comments have now become about expert opinions by people who have never written a check in their lives to actually participate in the profits, or losses, of an oil well, or bunch of oil wells. That does not seem to deter anybody now days from being "knowledgeable" about oil and gas. If they read it on the internet or on an investor presentation, or so much as saw a drilling rig one time, they are experts. Mr. Van Eck, please provide me with proof positive that total royalty burdens, taxes and leasehold obligations on Trident by the AER total 95%. I can then make up my own mind who is dumber, the business decision to accept those burdens, regardless of price, or the province, for not relaxing those burdens. I don't particularly need you to make up my mind for me. A very specific link, please, so I can research it.
  10. 5 points
    You give Trump (and OPEC) more credit that I do. And besides, after 60 years, OPEC is still trying to live up to the "powerful cartel" reputation that the unenlightened world has tried to bestow upon them. They are just a bunch of scrambling producers, each trying to protect his own interest, while possessing very little understanding of the business of oil, and even less understanding of the pricing mechanism. For proof, compare their actions and statements with those from the same group forty years ago. Not much has been learned. Yamani, Nazer, Naimi, Falih -- they are all reading the same line from the same book. As Yergin reported, Yamani said "The price goes up and demand goes down. It's simple, it's ABC." or something like that. Unfortunately, that simplistic statement is much too simplistic to be either valid or helpful as a guidance tool for managing the business of oil and its price. So the random price volatility continues while the unsuspecting world thinks that some form of intelligence is exercising effective control. The appropriate analogy for oil prices is the wave action at the shore. While there may be some rationale for the low and high tide sloshes, each slosh is its own random print on the sand. So it is with the futures prints on the price chart.
  11. 5 points
    Well look, if plastics is all that's left for oil then shale is a winner because it produces large quantities of the two prime feedstocks, naptha and ethane. The ethane is stripped off the wet associated gas and the naptha is a larger component of the light oil than it is for heavier versions. Hence, heavy sour crude would be a lousy feed stock for plastics but LTO is very good and the leftover can be gasoline which isn't going away anytime soon. This doesn't look good for KSA unless they have a lot of LTO or wet gas capacity. Heavy and medium crudes aren't great sources of plastic feedstocks.
  12. 5 points
    Ian, I'll rely on you to address how the Canadian government has abandoned the oil and gas industry, completely, in Alberta, how western select crude postings have been destroyed for lack of takeaway and essentially how the US shale oil and gas phenomena has changed the market order in North America for both oil and natural gas and hurt Canada, badly. A recent court decision, I believe in Alberta (Redwater), actual prohibits these Trident wells from being sold and placed back on production and they now MUST go to the orphaned well bank. THAT I do not understand, sorry, and I believe this case is being appealed. This is all very unfortunate and I make no excuses for any corporation who is financially irresponsible and cannot fulfill its obligations regarding the environment and applicable regulations. The American government has, of course, NOT abandoned the US shale oil industry, not by a long shot; we ignore laws and allow the unfettered waste of associated gas thru flaring, the Trump administration has eased regulations on EVERYTHING to do with oil and gas, the FED is now a puppet to this administration and low interest rates continue to benefit the US shale oil industry greatly, we can't built pipelines and LNG ports fast enough in America (all on borrowed money, by the way) and hell, even OPEC is propping up the American shale phenomena by cutting its production, raising prices and giving away its market share. All it takes is a tweet. Nothing seems to be helping the LTO biz. 1Q19 earnings from the shale oil industry, particularly in the Permian, are horrible. Almost every large to medium public company lost money last quarter, even EOG who made money, could not generate any FCF. For all the crap about low break-evens, etc. etc. that stuff NEVER shows up on financial statements and in earnings. The BS being said about shale oil in America has now reached epic proportions: https://www.oilystuffblog.com/single-post/2019/05/02/Oily-Stuff-Issues-Rare-Buy-Alert Wells making less than 3-4 BOPD in America still contribute something like 500,000 BOPD to our hydrocarbon needs and 80% of ALL oil and natural gas wells in America are classified as stripper wells. That segment of our industry is viable and important, employs tens of thousands of good men and women and contributes billions of dollars in tax revenue. Every stinking shale oil well in America is headed for stripper classification, unless they reach economic limits before 15 BOPD, which given rising GOR's and the costs of produced water, will. At the moment there are about 85,000 something shale oil wells in the US that, IMO, have a total plugging and decommissioning liability of over $10 billion dollars. Lots of Bakken crap is all subject to NORM and it is going to be a nightmare paying for all that plugging. Take a gander at SEC filings to see how much money has been set aside for plugging and decommissioning in the shale oil industry and otherwise don't forget it is already $300 billion in debt (P&P) and still outspending revenue every year. To assume its going to be more "responsible," in the end, than stripper well operators, is stupid. Its massive debt, with all those "monster" wells, does not make it very responsible NOW. I am a proud stripper well operator. I don't have any debt, my plugging liability is set aside, pay vendors within 30 days, have had the same employees for 40 years and I can stand on my own two financial feet. I don't lie to anybody to make myself look better. I like the shale oil phenomena for its ingenuity and the jobs its provided; I've made good money from it and it does not hurt my stripper well operations anymore. Its distortion of facts and exaggeration of reserves WILL, however, eventually do great harm to my country. Watch. Stripper wells are not evil, put in America by evil Russians trying to harm poor little 'ol royalty owners, I assure you. Take care, Ian.
  13. 5 points
    Then the solution to all those surplus princes sponging off the treasury is to eliminate the princes. Shot or beheaded? Does not really matter, either way, they go off the payroll. Yup, I expect a major bloodbath inside KSA.
  14. 5 points
    Rather than get involved in campaigning I tend to make a list each year of things I intend to do which make a personal contribution. Buying a house currently and plans for that over the next 2-3 years Stick another 200mm of insulation in the loft Stick my 600w of solar panels and GT inverter on the garage roof Put a New condensing boiler in and replace HW cylinder with a twin coil cylinder so it can accept heat from a solar water heater I intend to DIY install. Its no longer worth sticking PV in because there are no export payments. That should save about 10,000 kwh of gas and 500 kwh of electricity. Plant some trees and a couple of grape vines and teach my son how to grow vegetables.
  15. 5 points
    I like the book "The Long Emergency" by james howard kunstler. It is a good read and offers a stark answer to this post's question. I think we are squandering an amazing resource. What has taken millions of years to produce is being burned up in a matter of a few hundred years. There are necessary uses for oil that, if managed properly, will last this planet a long long time. There are better uses for oil than simply inefficiently burning it up in autos. We are smarter than that, at least I hope we are.
  16. 5 points
    ^ I wholeheartedly, strongly agree. For those who understand my cryptic note about a different forum, I've received a few (you) green texts in the last year or so on this topic. Also, as a moderator here, I was going to mention that this thread was off-topic for this forum, but then I saw it was posted in the "Geopolitics" sub-forum, so it appears to be fine: "The Geopolitics Forum focuses on all global politics. If it's related to oil please create a thread within the Oil General forum."
  17. 4 points
    Given the internal wars and threats, it sure looks like Qatar made the smart move by bailing out of that crowd.
  18. 4 points
    Oil Rigs dropped 2 1/2 % (20 Rigs) from this time last year. Oil Production increased 20% (to 12.2 mbd) from this time last year. I rest my case. One more thing: Look at Shale producer Roan They have about 200,000 acres in prime Oklahoma basins. They just started implementing and testing (Q4 '18) new technology. Others posted tech below. Starting in Feb they stopped all rigs/drilling because new technology produced far superior results. It is worth it to them to standardize and implement new operations before continue to drill idling a half dozen rigs. THAT SAME PAUSE IS HAPPENING ALL OVER SHALE BASINS AS PRODUCERS CATCH UP TO TECHNOLOGY LEADERS. I predict major increase in production second half of 2019. some majors will take out Roan soon. some already made offers
  19. 4 points
    ^ Nailed it. All this talk about Saudi Arabia being a lowest cost oil producer is hooeey. Nonsense. That oil royalty payment to the tens of thousands of royal princes (who basically do next to nothing productive) is required to keep the country from civil war and total, utter collapse. Similarly, the massive amounts of oil revenues required to pay off (social bribe) the lower-ranking non-royal citizens is necessary to keep the non-royal citizens from hauling the royalty to chop chop square and reducing the ranks of the royal elite by a head, and plunging the absolute dictatorship into a huge civil war bloodbath. Factor in those absolutely required "social payment obligations" and the Saudi government needs somewhere around $85 - $95 oil to remain a country in the medium to longer term. If you want to clearly see what happens to a country when the oil revenue runs out, when that oil revenue is required to bribe a country's citizens to keep a government in power, just look at Venezuela. It has the largest *proven* oil reserves on earth, but the government ended up being too incompetent to successfully keep the flow of oil revenue flowing to bribe its citizens into social submission and keep the government in power. Old 2013 pic related.
  20. 4 points
    It is also the fault of the Chinese gov't that they back industries in China, unlike the USA. It is hard to compete with that kind of support. And don't even try to tell us that China doesn't use slave labor, can't compete with that either. I personally believe we should be cutting China off due to the inhumane things the communist gov't does to their people, it's inhumane the way some people is treated over there. We should cut off all manufactured goods from there, they use toxic materials, they lie on testing reports just to get rid of substandard items, if they are penalized for these actions they skirt regulations by sending goods through another country trying to pass them off as made there instead of China. It's a bad deal all the way around for America and now that we have a POTUS saying "no more", everyone else in the world is irate that we aren't sitting back and taking the crap deals that other idiot presidents agreed to. I am almost positive that the only reason any of these deals went through is that a friend of the sitting president stood to make a lot of money.... Chinese goods are, for the most part, really crappy. I have worked in companies that had manufacturing over there and they don't seem to have the tech skills to solve problems, the company had to send engineers over to show them how to deal with the simplest of problems. I also believe we could very easily go without a lot of those goods shipped over here, they are just filler for the city dumps.
  21. 4 points
    The people also have ways to dispose of that government. I offer the past examples of East Germany, Ukraine, and now Venezuela (in progress). There comes a time in the affairs of men where the bold upend the stagnant and the ossified, and install a new replacement. We are getting a flavor of that even here in the US of A.
  22. 4 points
    If Trump wins re-election it will be very bad for the “deep state” whether that deep state be monolithic, systemic or isolated. Think of it thusly, remember when Obozo told Medvedev, “After my election I have more flexibility”? Trump will be in the same boat as Obozo was. Termed out, beholden to almost no one with the added bonus of spoiling for a fight. Has anyone forgotten his vindictiveness? Heads are going to roll on this. Now, it won’t reach to his imminence Obozo (calm yourself hope and change acolytes) Folks like him in “democratic societies” rarely ever get their deserved comeuppance. In third worlds he’d meet a sure and violent end. But it will reach to very high levels. In the periphery Sillary will take a hit. The Clinton Machine no longer has the power it once did and thus her and Slick Willy’s absolute protection, once a forgone conclusion, are now imperiled. Others like Brennan, Comey and perhaps Susan Rice will pay. They won’t betray Obozo as the true puppet master on the deal and thus it will be their pound of flesh that is paid. Let’s call them necessary sacrifices. Unfortunately still, so many American Voters can’t see the real picture here. What has been done by the folks who hatched this Russian Collusion malarkey can’t be undone. The damage to our Republic can’t be undone. It doesn’t matter whether you love or hate Trump, this episode represents the truth about where we are as a nation. Some in our country have become so overwhelmingly partisan that they don’t give a damn about respecting the law and the peaceful transfer of power which is the hallmark of our country. I’m fighting mad about it and everyone else should be as well. I’d be equally angry if Bush Jr. had done this to Obozo. This mess shouldn’t offend your sensibilities in terms of your politics or party ideology. It should offend your sense of Freedom, Right and Wrong, party be damned.
  23. 4 points
    Good argument. Do you care to even try to refute any facts I presented, which are public information, or do you just want to continue to bury your head in the sand?
  24. 4 points
    For those not aware Peter Strzok was the FBI agent who initiated the Trump investigation. As part of this he recruited Stefan Halper, a University of Cambridge professor with long standing ties to the CIA and Britain's MI6. Halper offered up his services to the Trump campaign as a foreign policy advisor, which apparently was his in. In the aftermath of Strzok's role in this fiasco and his anti-Trump texts to his lover Lisa Page, he was initially only demoted and suspended by the FBI. This was later overruled and he was fired. Now, rightly I think, his actions are being investigated. Strzok should have known from the beginning he was always going to be the fall guy if things went sideways. He's lucky this is the US. In many other countries he would have been found dead.
  25. 4 points
    Yup. It's one of the most amazing political elections in history. He had the entire state apparatus against him. This includes, especially, the media. Even members of his own party. Even more amazing is he survived this coup attempt. If you're an atheist it's enough to make you a believer in some sort of invisible hand. Eric Schmidt is evil. I don't like to throw the word evil around because it's used too often but it applies here. Google was working on Project Dragonfly. It was essentially a censored search engine for China. They would censor whatever words or content the Chinese Communist Party wanted. To their credit some employees leaked this effort and now Google says it won't deploy it. I've no doubt, however, they continue to work on it until things quiet down. Google is also working with the Chinese on AI. This has led General Dunford, Chairman of the JCS, to meet with Google since this technology will benefit the Chinese military, hence, the CCP. Recall that Google decided not to continue working with the Pentagon on Project Maven for fear it could be used to identify targets, for example. Google is so desperate to get back into the Chinese market that they are willing to get into bed with the Chinese. What they don't understand is that China will never let Google in their market so long as it's ruled by the CCP. To stay in power the CCP need to control information. An unfettered search engine is anathema to that goal. They are going to steal everything they can from Google while dangling the prospect of letting them in. When they've got what they want they'll sever ties with Google and continue to keep them out. Just imagine the things Google would have been able to get away with, here and abroad, if Hillary had won.