Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Disclaimer: Lots Of Typographical And Factual Errors -- July 18, 2018

A lot of long and detailed posts have been posted in the past couple of hours. I have not had time to proofread them and the spell checkers and fact checkers go home at 4:30 p.m. daily. So, I assume there will be a lot of typographical and factual errors in the posts -- let's say for the entire day. I'll spot a lot of them later this evening.

If there are errors that significantly affect the content of the post, let me know. But, minor spelling errors, grammar, yada, yada, yada, just ignore them. I'll get to most of them eventually.

Oh, before I forget. The price of gasoline in Texas has fallen below $2.50 -- one can easily find regular gasoline for $2.49/gallon north of DFW. My journals suggest that this is about 20 cents/gallon more than last year at this time, and it's possible we haven't seen the lows yet. 

Gasoline demand, exactly as "stated" earlier today:


If the economy is doing so well, and gasoline is "relatively inexpensive," why is gasoline demand about the same as last year? I don't know; just a rhetorical question.

This Is Why U-Haul Trailer Lots Are Overwhelmed In Texas -- July 18, 2018

I'm hoping some of the local television networks pick up on the U-Haul story. It would make a great visual. All those U-Haul truck- and trailer-lots overflowing with orange-and-white U-Hauls.

I knew the US was going to become #1 in crude oil production, but I completely missed this story.

A sharp-eyed reader caught it.

Texas is about to overtake both Iran and Iraq in crude oil production. In doing so, Texas will become the world's third-largest crude oil producer. And that's despite the lack of takeaway capacity that is gumming up the works. From The Hill:
Texas's oil industry is set to surpass Iraq and Iran to become the third-largest oil producing region in the world, behind only Russia and Saudi Arabia.

CNN Money reports that HSBC Bank predicted in a recent report that the state's explosive growth in oil production over the last two years could result in Texas passing the two Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) members as oil prices rise around the world.

"It's remarkable. The [Permian Basin oil field] is nothing less than a blessing for the global economy," Bob McNally, president of Rapidan Energy Group, told CNN.

The surge in production comes just two years after the oil fields in Texas were seeing much lower production levels at the tail end of the Obama administration, according to CNN.

"In 2014, it was amazing. 2016 was down in the dumps. Two years later, it's back to crazy," Texas railroad commissioner Ryan Sitton told the news network.

Production cutbacks in Russia and OPEC nations have also led to a rise in U.S. oil prices, a boon for the economy as companies in Texas struggle to find qualified workers and the infrastructure required to support the surge.

"To say there's a shortage of bodies is an understatement," Jeff Bush, president of CSI Recruiting president, told CNN. He said lower production under the Obama administration had left companies struggling to adjust to the economic boom in time.
And if it's on CNN, it must be true. LOL.

Much more at the link. 

By the way, I have not posted it, but a very, very credible roughneck with decades of experience comments at another oil blog. He suggests, with some authority, that the Paradox Basin will be even bigger than the Permian. For those who have forgotten, the most productive onshore well drilled in 2012 was in the Paradox Basin. The Paradox Basin is "on hold" for various reasons.

Peak oil? I don't think so. 

The Political Page, T+48; This Deserves A Stand-Alone Post -- Nothing About The Bakken -- July 18, 2018

The US Senate breaks an all-time record:
Senate Republicans broke a record on Wednesday for the number of appeals court judges confirmed during a president's first two years. 
Senators voted 50-49 on Andrew Oldham's nomination to be a judge on the 5th Circuit, making him Trump's 23rd circuit court judge confirmed since he took office last year.
That breaks the previous record set by President George H.W. Bush, who got 22 appeals court judges confirmed during his administration's first two years.
"The Senate continues to confirm impressive nominees whom President Trump has asked to serve our country," Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said on Wednesday. "[Oldham] comes highly recommended by colleagues and peers from across the spectrum." 
Republicans have rushed to confirm Trump's nominees for the key bench, letting the party shape the direction of the U.S. court system for decades.  
"I think of the things that we've been able to do with this Republican government the last year and a half, the single most long-lasting, positive impact we'll be able to have on the country is the judiciary," McConnell told reporters in Kentucky late last week.
Democrats and allied outside groups have blasted Republicans' steady pace of confirming Trump's circuit court nominees. 

"Given his lack of judicial experience and blatantly political record, litigants who come before Mr. Oldham in court will understandably question whether they are getting an impartial judge," Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) said in a statement. 

She added that Oldham's record "could not be more extreme and overtly political." 
Jake Faleschini, the director of the Federal Courts Program at the Center for American Progress, added that "Oldham is yet another young right-wing firebrand who has spent his career pushing a damaging, partisan agenda."
But Democrats are essentially powerless to stop Trump's judicial picks unless they can win GOP support.
Much, much more at the link. 

GOP: doing the work of the people, President Bill Clinton would say, no doubt. 


The screenshot above was taken from Twitter, which in turn was taken from The American Spectator at this link.

CLR's Pittsburgh / Uhlman Federal Wells In Banks Oil Field

For newbies: these are incredible wells and an incredible location. We're starting to see a few more Three Forks upper bench wells, but not many, and Bakken operators haven't even begun to "scratch the surface" when it comes to the lower benches of the Three Forks.

If you "have" one well in any given drilling unit in the Bakken, you will eventually have four; you very likely will have eight; you might have twelve; and in the very good areas of the Bakken you may have upwards of 24 wells or more.

The daily activity report of July 18, 2018, highlighted CLR's Pittsburgh / Uhlman Federal drilling units.

This post is where the CLR's Pittsburgh and Uhlman Federal well will be tracked.

 ********************************************* 
The Pittsburgh / Uhlman Federal Wells

The graphic:




The three older wells:
  • 28737, 1,423, CLR, Uhlman 1-7H, Banks, t1/15; cum 435K 12/18;  no evidence this well has been re-fracked (no sundry form; FracFocus); SWSE 7-152-99. Posted at "Wells of Interest." It's an interesting well. 
Monthly Production Data:
PoolDateDaysBBLS OilRunsBBLS WaterMCF ProdMCF SoldVent/Flare
BAKKEN5-20183144364491365560895370501
BAKKEN4-20183056265938602073356836259
BAKKEN3-2018192939247346933998382638
BAKKEN2-20182334913681570861941365881
BAKKEN1-201822355231739364737607202
BAKKEN12-20170000000
BAKKEN11-2017242050000
BAKKEN10-2017312859320716015946577939
BAKKEN9-2017295515540237301232211670434
BAKKEN8-201731663165433935147451446831
BAKKEN7-2017316454619540021238511844300
BAKKEN6-2017305715579437601113310570340

The second:
  • 19797, 729, CLR, Pittsburgh1-19H, t6/11; cum 357K 12/18; note recent production profile:
 Monthly Production Data:
PoolDateDaysBBLS OilRunsBBLS WaterMCF ProdMCF SoldVent/Flare
BAKKEN5-201831650466285575886488640
BAKKEN4-201830707170875836812681260
BAKKEN3-201820519449534478682056661154
BAKKEN2-201828635963355540811681160
BAKKEN1-201823847881987621756475640
BAKKEN12-20170000000
BAKKEN11-2017157101010492217821780
BAKKEN10-20173115771575934525752570
BAKKEN9-20173016701433790550155010

And, now the third:
  • 22154, 637, CLR, Pittsburgh 2-19H, Banks, t4/12; cum 215K 12/18; huge well; huge jump in production, 2/18;

PoolDateDaysBBLS OilRunsBBLS WaterMCF ProdMCF SoldVent/Flare
BAKKEN5-201824378039496897533853380
BAKKEN4-20183069186595805985637782781
BAKKEN3-20182989128859103831255311569984
BAKKEN2-20182810702108641544414589145890
BAKKEN1-2018621231816258224344641970
BAKKEN12-20170000000
BAKKEN11-2017202675112233143140
BAKKEN10-2017311050960927151115110
BAKKEN9-20173010741205864152115210

******************************
Now the newer wells in this area. First, note the first full month of production for this well:
  • 30964, 3,049, LR, Uhlman Federal 3-7H, Banks, the name and the geology report says "middle Bakken"; the frack form says "Three Forks," probably a typo, big rig, Oct 3, 2015; TD, October 14, 2015; TD = 11,040 feet; 4 sections, flowing, 61 stages; 12.3 million lbs , t4/18; cum 175K 12/18;
Monthly Production Data:

PoolDateDaysBBLS OilRunsBBLS WaterMCF ProdMCF SoldVent/Flare
BAKKEN5-20183156400565314040582797773715426
BAKKEN4-201861325412940915717955119785977
BAKKEN3-20180000000
BAKKEN2-20180000000
BAKKEN1-2018519031903666388103881

Now, the rest of the wells:
  • 34846, drl, CLR, Patterson Federal 8-13HSL1, Banks,
  • 34847, drl, CLR, Pittsburgh 4-18HSL, Banks,
  • 34848, drl, CLR, Pittsburgh 5-18H1, Banks,
  • 34849, drl, CLR, Pittsburgh 6-18H, Banks,
  • 34850, drl, CLR, Pittsburgh 7-18H1, Banks,
  • 34851, drl, CLR, Pittsburgh 8-18H, Banks,

  • 34852, drl, CLR, Kuhn 8-12HSL1, Banks,
  • 34853, drl, CLR, Uhlman Federal 4-7HSL, Banks,
  • 34854, drl, CLR, Uhlman Federal 5-7H1, Banks,
  • 34855, drl, CLR, Uhlman Federal 6-7H, Banks,
  • 34856, drl, CLR, Uhlman Federal 7-7H1, Banks,
  • 34857, drl, CLR, Uhlman Federal 8-7H, Banks,

  • 30965, 2,293, CLR, Uhlman Federal 2-7H1, Banks, t4/18; cum 224K 12/18; huge well; 49K in one month;
  • 30964, 3,049, CLR, Uhlman Federal 3-7H, Banks, t4/18; cum 175K 12/18; huge well; 56K in one month;
  • 30966, 2,466, CLR, Pittsburgh 3-7H, Banks, t4/18; cum 238K 12/18; huge well; 59K in one month;
The six-well Pittsburgh / Uhlman Federal wells in section 18:
  • 35158, drl, CLR, Pittsburgh 9-18H1, Banks,
  • 35159, drl, CLR, Pittsburgh 10-18H, Banks,
  • 35160, drl, CLR, Pittsburgh 11-18H1, Banks,
  • 35161, drl, CLR, Uhlman Federal 9-7H1, Banks,
  • 35162, drl, CLR, Uhlman Federal 10-7H, Banks,
  • 35163, drl, CLR, Uhlman Federal 11-7H1, Banks,

Alcoa To Restart A Third Potline At Its Indiana Smelter -- Bullish On America? -- July 18, 2018; Fitzsimmons On PSXP Midstream; Line 3 Update; And California Dreamin'

American economy? This is pretty bullish, one would think. Link here at SeekingAlpha.
Alcoa expects to complete the restart of the third potline at its Warrick aluminum smelter in Indiana by the end of the year; related costs will be incurred in Q3 and Q4, estimated at $5M after-tax.
A potline is a row of electrolytic cells used in the production of aluminum. By the way, the same thing -- re-starting a potline --was reported in New Zealand a few weeks ago. No mention of President Trump or the trade war mentioned in the SeekingAlpha note.

**********************************
Odds and Ends

Fitzsimmons on Phillips 66 Partners from SeekingAlpha:
  • on Wednesday, PSXP raised its quarterly distribution 5.3%, continuing the torrid 30% CAGR since the IPO
  • but if the MLP model is "broken" as so many (including myself) believe, is even a high-quality MLP like PSXP worth holding?
  • considering the yield, its high-quality GP, and the number of very attractive demand-pull growth projects, the answer is "yes."
Disclaimer: this is not an investment site. 

Line 3 update from businessinsider dated today:
Aecon Group Inc. announced today that SA Energy Group, a 50/50 joint venture between Aecon and Robert B. Somerville Co. Ltd., has been awarded a $282 million contract by Enbridge Pipelines Inc. for Spreads 8 and 9 of the Line 3 Replacement Phase 2 project in Manitoba.  
The scope of work includes constructing 92.2 km of pipeline in the area of Brandon, Manitoba for Spread 8, and constructing 96.5 km of pipeline near Morden, Manitoba for Spread 9 extending to the Canada-U.S. border.
Construction is expected to commence in August 2018, with anticipated substantial completion by the end of 2018. Recently, under Phase 1 of the Line 3 Replacement project, SA Energy Group successfully completed Spreads 3 and 4 (261 km), in Saskatchewan.
California dreamin': well, that ends that. The California Supreme Court said the initiative to divide the state into a triad cannot be on the November, 2018, ballot. But, the Court said it will re-visit the issue later.

And, of course, you know what's coming. LOL:

California Dreamin', The Mamas and Papas

CLR With Permits For Another 6-Well Pittsburgh / Uhlman Federal Pad In Banks Oil Field -- July 18, 2018

I'm still in the process of completing this page.

Note: in a long note like this, there will be factual and typographical errors. If this is important to you, go to the source.

Active rigs:

$67.827/18/201807/18/201707/18/201607/18/201507/18/2014
Active Rigs67593073196
Seven new permits:
  • Operator: CLR (6); Hunt
  • Field: Banks (McKenzie); Werner (Dunn)
  • Comments: CLR has permits for another 6-well Pittsburgh / Uhlman Federal pad in NENW 18-152-99; from a post on May 1, 2018 -- CLR has permits for a 12-well Patterson/Pittsburgh/Kuhn/Uhlman pad in lot 4 section 7-152-99; at about 1,200 feet FSL and 100 - 1,000 FWL; lot 4 looks like it is in the southwest quarter of the section.
Wow!  Eleven producing wells (DUCs) reported as completed, but just barely. No data posted at the NDIC site for any of the wells; range of water/sand: about 87% to 90% water in the following wells --
  • 33225, n/d, CLR, Kennedy 7-31H, API - 33-053-07878; 2/14/18 - 3/8/18; 12.245 million gallons water;
  • 33226, n/d, CLR, Kennedy 6-31H2, API - 33-053-07879; 1/21/18/ - 2/11/18; 8.919 million gallons water;
  • 33227, n/d, CLR, Kennedy 5-31H, API - 33-053-07880; 1/21/18 - 2/11/18; 11.269 million gallons water;
  • 32360, n/d, CLR, Antelope Federal 7-23H API - 33-053-07436; 3/28/18 - 3/28/18 (no typo); 11.908 million gallons water;
  • 32358, n/d, CLR, Antelope Federal 5-23H, API - 33-053-07434; 3/14//18 - 3/14/18 (no typo); 8.335 million gallons water
  • 33108, n/d, CLR, Wiley 12-25H, API - 33-053-07833; 3/25/18 - 4/9/18; 9.494 million gallons water;
  • 33109, n/d, CLR, Wiley 11-25H2, API - 33-053-07834; 3/25/18 - 4/9/18; 9.348 million gallons water;
  • 33110, n/d, CLR, Wiley 10-25H, API - 33-053-07835; 4/12/18 - 5/5/18; 9.737 million gallons water;
  • 33111, n/d, CLR, Wiley 9-25H2, API - 33-053-07836; 4/12/18 - 5/3/18; 9.838 million gallons water;
  • 33112, n/d, CLR, Wiley 8-25H, API - 33-053-07837; 4/12/18 - 5/5/18; 9.366 million gallons water,
  • 33224, n/d, CLR, Kennedy 8-31H, API - 33-053-07877; 2/14/18 - 3/8/18; 12.735 million gallons water, 
Six permits renewed:
  • Crescent Point Energy (4): two CPEUSC Elena and two CPEUSC Lloyd permits in Williams County;
  • Whiting (2): two P Thomas permits in Williams County
One well re-completed:
  • 15167, North Range Resources, Beta Race Federal 22-6; Billings County
Operator transfer: 57 wells transferred from Vanguard Operating to White Rock Oil & Gas. These are very old permits, throughout the state, from Williams County in the north to Bowman County in the far southwest. The oldest permit is #6642; the most recent permit is #12699. 
  • #6642, still producing; multiple payzones over the years (Birdbear, Madison, Red River, Stonewall, but is now a Madison well; first drilled in 1979 with no full months off since then; cum 108K from the Stonewall; 38K from the Birdbear; and 239K from the Madison and still producing about 300 bbls/month from the Madison
  • #12699, a Red River well, drilled/test in 1/190; cum 30K 5/18; and still active/producing about 500 bbls/month
 ********************************************* 
The Pittsburgh / Uhlman Federal Wells

Note: I'm going to leave this here for now, but it will be completed at a stand-alone post later. Nothing below will be updated. All updates will be at this post.

Of interest in that area:
  • 28737, 1,423, CLR, Uhlman 1-7H, Banks, t1/15; cum 411K 5/18; no evidence this well has been re-fracked (no sundry form; FracFocus); SWSE 7-152-99. If I remember, I will post the entire production profile at "Wells of Interest." It's an interesting well. 
Monthly Production Data:
PoolDateDaysBBLS OilRunsBBLS WaterMCF ProdMCF SoldVent/Flare
BAKKEN5-20183144364491365560895370501
BAKKEN4-20183056265938602073356836259
BAKKEN3-2018192939247346933998382638
BAKKEN2-20182334913681570861941365881
BAKKEN1-201822355231739364737607202
BAKKEN12-20170000000
BAKKEN11-2017242050000
BAKKEN10-2017312859320716015946577939
BAKKEN9-2017295515540237301232211670434
BAKKEN8-201731663165433935147451446831
BAKKEN7-2017316454619540021238511844300
BAKKEN6-2017305715579437601113310570340

Of interest in that area:
  • 19797, 729, CLR, Pittsburgh1-19H, t6/11; cum 331K 5/18; note recent production profile:
 Monthly Production Data:
PoolDateDaysBBLS OilRunsBBLS WaterMCF ProdMCF SoldVent/Flare
BAKKEN5-201831650466285575886488640
BAKKEN4-201830707170875836812681260
BAKKEN3-201820519449534478682056661154
BAKKEN2-201828635963355540811681160
BAKKEN1-201823847881987621756475640
BAKKEN12-20170000000
BAKKEN11-2017157101010492217821780
BAKKEN10-20173115771575934525752570
BAKKEN9-20173016701433790550155010

I have to run -- pick up Sophia, so I will sort this out later, but note this well in this drilling unit :
  • 30964, 3,049, LR, Uhlman Federal 3-7H, Banks, the name and the geology report says "middle Bakken"; the frack form says "Three Forks," probably a typo, big rig, Oct 3, 2015; TD, October 14, 2015; TD = 11,040 feet; 4 sections, flowing, 61 stages; 12.3 million lbs , t4/18; cum 72K 5/18; 
Monthly Production Data:

PoolDateDaysBBLS OilRunsBBLS WaterMCF ProdMCF SoldVent/Flare
BAKKEN5-20183156400565314040582797773715426
BAKKEN4-201861325412940915717955119785977
BAKKEN3-20180000000
BAKKEN2-20180000000
BAKKEN1-2018519031903666388103881

The S&P Is Approaching A Bearish Milestone -- July 18, 2018 -- Nothing To Do With The Bakken

I'll be off the net for awhile. 

Disclaimer: this is not an investment site. 

If this is a bear market, I want more of it. LOL. BRK-B up over 5%; UNP over over 2%. Despite:
  • oil plummeting
  • Fed threats of faster rate increases
  • chaos in Washington, DC
  • Brexit
  • Trump-Putin summit
  • mainstream media telling us the world is coming to an end
  • Soros
From an earlier post:


********************************
Machts Nichts

Two days of testimony from "the Fed." The "beige book" is released.


And the market reaction? F.L.A.T.

Before the "beige book" was released, the Dow was up 70 points. After the "beige book" was released, the Dow was up 70 points.

***********************************
On The Other Hand

Iran. There are suggestions that sanctions on Iran are starting to be felt ... in Iran.


China. And there are more and more stories that China will come to the table sooner than later with regard to the trade war, T+48.

EIA's Weekly Petroleum Report -- July 18, 2018

Link here.
  • US crude oil inventories: increased by 5.8 million bbls -- wow!
  • US crude oil inventories now sit at 411.1 million bbls but the EIA blow it off -- saying that it's still 2% below the five year average -- the five year average includes the two years in which Saudi Arabia flooded the market with oil and the Permian was hitting its stride
  • but look at this: after operating at nearly 98% capacity, refineries are now down to just 94.3% capacity; most likely due to fact that winter/summer transition and height of driving season are in our rear-view mirrors
  • gasoline production decreased last week but still above my "threshold": 10.3 million bbls/day produced (my threshold: 10 million bbls)
  • same with distillate fuel: decreased to 5.2 million bbls (my threshold is 5 million bbls
  • imports increased by a staggering 1.6 million bbls (my threshold: less than a million bbls)
  • over the past four weeks, crude oil imports averaged about 8.5 million bbls per day, 8.1% more than the same four-week period last year -- so we are importing more (but also exporting more -- now exporting 3 million bbls/day)
  • gasoline imports: 657,000 bbl/day
  • distillate fuel imports: 140,000 bbl/day
  • WTI drops another 29 cents to trade at $66.89 after this report was released
Comments: for oil bulls, short term, this is a scary, scary report. But worse, for the US economy, it is very, very bearish. We will see if that's confirmed with gasoline demand data to be released later, graphically. I'm obviously missing something, though: the US markets are minimally negative to flat, suggesting investors are not linking bearishness that I see with bullishness that the Fed sees.  

Gasoline demand the numbers are out, but the graph has not been updated. When the graph comes out, it will show that the "demand for gasoline" reported today is slightly -- very slightly -- below that reported for same period last year (one may not see separation on the graph.

Disclaimer: this is not an investment site. Do not make any investment, financial, job, travel, or relationship decisions based on what you read here or think you may have read here.

Market: in a slightly negative to flat market, stock picking seems more important than ever. Let's look at some bellwether stocks and I use the term bellwether tongue-in-cheek -- I wanted to see if I still knew how to spell bellwether -- the bell that rings whether or not the weather changes (wether, by the way for those who have forgotten, is a castrated ram, and yes, that's the etymology of "bellwether":
  • AAPL: at $190, down $1.19
  • BRK: wow - wow - wow -- at $198, up $7.89 (up over 4%) -- what's not to like?
  • UNP: nice -- at $140.93, up $2.67 (up almost 2%)
  • SRE: at $114, down $1.24 -- almost exactly what I suggested a few weeks ago; purely serendipity;
  • S: at $5.58, down a penny
  • NOG: at $3.26, well off it's high for the past 52 weeks, but up 2 cents
Okay, that's enough. But that's pretty amazing for a company like Berkshire to move that much in one day. Berkshire investors have to be relieved that Warren et al didn't announce a special dividend -- all those taxes to pay -- if one wants cash from Berkshire, sell a few shares and pay the "cheaper" capital gains tax.

Let's see. There was something else I was going to say, but I forget. Maybe some music will help.

Fishing Junks at Sunset, Jean Michel Jarre

******************************
Notes To The Granddaughters

Hard to believe The Concerts in China, Jean Michel Jarre, were released in 1981. I think I first recall listening to them back in 1987 or thereabouts. I was commanding an air transportable hospital -- we were training in England at the time. To my everlasting disappointment, I never put in place some great communication ideas I had at the time. Those ideas came to fruition some two decades later but we had the technology in 1987. I completely missed the opportunity. And I know the reason. The lesson learned. A lesson I can pass on to the granddaughters.

*******************************
The Book Page

I continue to "work" the "one consequential book per week" rule. I just returned last week's book, Our Man In Havana, Graham Greene, to the library and am now reading The Sisters: The Saga of the Mitford Family, Mary S. Lovell, c. 2001.

If there is something akin to a "chick flick" among written biographies, this book would fit the bill.

I've suggested to our oldest granddaughter who wants to read Little Women (she is currently reading Franz Kafka) that The Peabody Sisters and The Mitford Sisters might be similarly interesting.

At 529 pages, I will have to be disciplined to complete the Mitford Sisters in one week.

I always thought "Clementine" was an American name (she'll be comin' around the mountain). But lo and behold (and I knew this, but had forgotten): Clementine Ogilvy Spencer-Churchill, Baroness Spencer-Churchill, GBE (nee Hozier) was the wife of Winston Churchill and a life peer in her own right.

David Mitford -- the father of the "Mitford sisters" -- was the second son born to Lady Clementine Ogilvy and her husband Bertie Mitford. His aunt, Lady Clementine's sister, Lady Blanche, married Henry Hozier and was mother to another Clementine -- are you following this? -- the Clementine who married Winston Churchill. So, David would have been a first cousin (?) of Clementine Churchill, and the Mitford girls would have been nieces (?).

This was the same Winston Churchill who was voted out of office in a landslide upset in 1946 after "winning" the war and saving Britain from the Nazis. And the Brits are upset that the current US president actually sat in Winston's chair. Seventy-two years ago the Brits hated Winston Churchill enough to vote him out of office. Short memories.

On another note, first printings of many of Winston Churchill's book and original paintings by Churchill can be seen in a special, permanent exhibit at the Dallas Museum of Art.

I wonder if Winston called his wife by her full name? Perhaps when he was really angry at her for something.

Touch To Remember, Jean Michel Jarre

*****************************************
The Amazon Page

Amazon is simply incredible. I love targeted ads.

Amazon just sent me a long list of kitchen gadgets -- all 50% to 60% off -- and that's not a "come-on." When one goes to any one of these items, the full price is listed at $11.99 or thereabouts and with the "code" the price is 50 to 60 percent less.

Shipping is free.

And, then on top of that one can use "prime points" that have accumulated from previous purchases (of which I have many). But then, incredibly, points on points. Because I have "Prime," Amazon will ship my purchase to arrive in two days. But if I agree to take "regular shipping" - add a few days -- I get another $5.00 credit. So, with a couple of clicks, I order something I actually need -- through a targeted ad -- and get it absolutely free (yes, I know the annual Prime fee is now $120) and get another $5.00 credit. For something I'm getting free with no shipping and handling costs. Yes, I will be charged an inconsequential sales tax.

I assume Jeff Bezos is making me feel so good that when he raises the annual Prime fee another $20, I will gladly pay. Sort of like the proverbial frog sitting in warm water that is gradually heating up.

The Humor Page, T+48 -- July 18, 2018 -- Nothing About The Bakken

At least two stories.

From readers.

Much appreciated.

First story: something called energynews.com is reporting that "Illinois regulators are stymied in pursuit of coal mine cleanup funds."

Stymied.

In Chicago? Are you kidding?
When I saw the headline, I thought it was a "slush fund" story. I guess I'm wrong. Sounds like something else.

The coal mine permit expired in 1989. Illinois didn't go after the bond until 2005 (16 years later).  The case was dismissed by the court in 2014 (what? and the reporter provides no explanation why?). Now a new bank has acquired the bank that originally held the bond.

But we're missing a big part of the story: why did the court dismiss the case in the first place? And not only that, $325,000 seems like a pretty paltry sum. Strange, strange story.

Second story.

Another bank story. This one in Africa. Something called the African Development Bank.

Apparently Multilateral Development Banks "use manmade climate change alarmism to justify lending policies that reject funding for fossil fuel electricity generation, promote expensive and unreliable renewable sources, and thereby help keep impoverished nations poor."

Apparently the African Development Bank was one of these Multilateral Development Banks. I hate all those capital letters, but we will move on.

The ADB has seen where this renewable energy policy has gotten them: an hour of electricity every day in much of Africa -- and that hour, relying on solar and wind energy -- is unreliable and sporadic.

So, breaking with the rest of the MDBs, the ADB will now allow fossil fuel, other than just natural gas (yes, that would mean coal), to provide electricity for Africans.

The writer "explains why Africa, China, India, Indonesia and others refuse to reject coal and gas – and rely on “green” energy technologies that don’t exist … except in classrooms, computer models, IPCC reports, Al Gore lectures, and renewable energy company promotional literature."


The article is a wonky article explaining the transition from the Obama energy policy in Africa and the Trump-Perry energy policy in Africa. It's a painful article to read but great for the archives.

*************************************
A Note For The Granddaughters

Years ago -- decades ago -- I was sitting in a bar in west Africa, in Banjul, The Gambia, just south of Senegal.

About 9:00 p.m. the lights in the hotel go out. Two chaps -- and they were chaps, from England -- excused themselves. About thirty minutes later the lights came back on and a few minutes later, the chaps returned to the bar. They said the country's electricity was provided by a couple of diesel engines -- probably GE engines -- and that someone had forgotten to refill the diesel fuel tanks. I am not making this up. I can't recall now if it was the entire country, the entire city, or just the hotel -- doesn't matter -- probably one and the same for all practical purposes -- that lost power that night ... until more diesel fuel was put in the tanks.

Talking to those two chaps felt as if I were talking to Harris and Wilson from Heart of the Matter, Graham Greene, 1946.

That was 1946. Sounds like most of Africa hasn't progressed much farther, except now they've been suckered into using solar energy instead of diesel fuel. Some call it "carbon colonialism."



The Market, Energy, Trade War, Natural Gas, And Political Page, T+48 -- July 18, 2018

CSX: CSX reports jump in profit. Cost cuts and higher freight rates boost railroad operator's second-quarter earnings. CSX reported a sharp increase in profit, and wow! Was it ever! Net income was almost a billion dollars. Actual net income was $877 million in the second corder, a 72% increase from the $510 million it earned one year earlier. Revenue increased about 6% to $3.1 billioin, boosted by higher volumes. This WSJ article has received no comments so far. La-de-da.

BRK-B: up over 2.5% in pre-market trading. Probably has nothing to do with the CSX story, but remember, Warren owns BNSF lock, stock, and barrel. Pundits suggest BRK-A/B is rising because the company has "lifted previous restrictions on buying back its own stock." Pundits suggest that Berkshire is unable to find anything worth buying. And with hordes of cash, it might as well buy back some of its own common stock. Okay.

Disclaimer: this is not an investment site. Do not make any financial, investment, travel, job, or relationship decisions based on anything you read at the blog or think you may have read at the blog.

It's not Nordstrom's, it's Nord Stream 2. Posted earlier,
The Europeans are wary of Trump and Putin meeting this week, and yet it's the Germans buying all that natural gas from Putin through a brand new $11-billion pipeline. These are the facts:
Nord Stream 2 is a gas pipeline that would allow Germany to effectively double the amount of gas it imports from Russia. In 2017, Germany used up a record 53 billion cubic meters of Russian gas, comprising about 40 percent of Germany's total gas consumption. Nord Stream 2's delivery system is designed to carry up to 55 billion cubic meters (1.942 trillion cubic feet) of gas per year.
So, to repeat: currently, Russian natural gas accounted fro 40% of Germany's total gas consumption; the Nord Stream 2 would effectively double the amount of gas Germany would import from Russia. Seems fairly significant to me. And yet, CNBC says "Trump is exaggerating Germany's reliance on Russia for energy."  CNBC was disingenuous with its argument (Trump was exactly correct, it turns out) but worse, CNBC defends Russia even as NBC calls out Trump on Russian sanctions. Seems one can't have it both ways. Unless you are CNBC/NBC/MSNBC.
Even cartoonists get it; this is not rocket science: