Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Chicago Hammering Cleveland Tonight; Tesla Beats Expectations; Shares Surge -- October 26, 2016

The Russian a/c carrier / Northern Fleet has sailed through the Strait of Gibralter; is in the Mediterranean Sea, more than three hours ago. Don't laugh at Putin's rusty navy -- he, at least, has an a/c carrier
Moscow’s illegal annexation of territory in Georgia and Ukraine, as well as its brutal assault on rebel forces in Syria, are all part of Mr Putin’s plan to re-establish Russia as a major player on the world stage. And, with America transfixed by the horror show that the current presidential election contest has become, who is to say the opportunistic Mr Putin might not be tempted to embark on yet another military adventure, perhaps this time focusing his attention on the vulnerable Baltic states?
Watch the price of gasoline in November: indications suggest the price of gasoline could spike in Europe in November, 2016.

TSLA: beat expectations; shares surge; this is a surprise profit of $22 million, buoyed by record sales of its pricey EVs; its first profit after 12 quarterly losses amid a push to generate cash for building its $35,000 Model 3. Good for them. This really puts the kibosh on those shorting the stock. This will be fun to watch.

World Series: Meanwhile, Chicago -- the favored team -- must have had it with Cleveland last night -- now leading 4 - 0 at the top of the 5th evening. They need to wrap up this win before it begins raining. Now, 5 - 0 -- walks a batter, bringing in an unearned run. Wow. Normally, games would be considered completed after five innings, but some years ago the baseball commissioner said games would be completed ... regardless. Rain starting to fall at the bottom of the ninth. If they don't finish tonight, the weather looks bad tomorrow. [Chicago wins: 5 -1. The series is tied 1 - 1. Now, on to Chicago. Day off tomorrow, then three days in Wrigley Field.]

Reading. If you have nothing better to do tonight -- other than watching the World Series -- I highly recommend the book review / essay in The Wall Street Journal this past weekend: "The Truth About Egypt's Revolution."
And yet the day before Mr. Mubarak’s resignation, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper assured a House committee that “the term Muslim Brotherhood is an umbrella term for a variety of movements.
In the case of Egypt, a very heterogeneous group, largely secular.” The White House too seemed unaware of the kind of movement that might replace Mr. Mubarak.
On Feb. 1, 2011, just a week after the protests began, President Obama declared that a change of government in Cairo “must begin now.” (By comparison, it was five months before he said the same about Syria’s Bashar al-Assad.) When Mr. Mubarak stepped aside 10 days later, a U.S. diplomat later recalled that Mr. Obama’s advisers toasted with vodka and beer.
Meanwhile, the US cedes the Atlantic Ocean to the Russians and the Chinese as Obama's Pentagon withdraws from another key strategic position. Another ally thrown under the bus. Truly amazing. Just one more Obama legacy. Less than 86 days. If historians are honest ten years from now, President Obama will go down as the most inept president in modern US history.

America's Energy Policy: White Paper from Horizons: Journal of International Relations and Sustainable Development. Of course, this paper will be outdated as soon as Hillary or Trump takes the oath of office, next January 20, 2017.

Global Warming: I don't know if this is early or not, but it's not even November yet. The National Weather Service predicts snow in the northeast: snow showers with accumulations of 3 to 7 inches possible over the Catskills and Adirondacks in New York.

Dumbing-down American education. Oil, gas automation sector suffering from skills shortage -- Rigzone -- I don't think the article said anything we didn't already know; I wouldn't bother clicking on the link.

The Accountant. I think most folks would enjoy this Ben Affleck movie. 

A Most Interesting Graph -- October 26, 2016

From John Kemp:

If I read the graphic and the legend correctly, this is the change in crude oil stockpile shown above:
  • red line: inventories, 2016 - 10 yr median
  • yellow line: 2016 - 2015

Energy Source Mix -- USA -- West, East, And Texas -- October 26, 2016

Energy source mix varies among the three U.S. #electricity grids


The big takeaway: for those states in the east that mandate renewable energy, they have quite a ways to go, and it's going to be very, very expensive. Right now, in the East, only 4% of total energy is generated by wind (5% capacity), and there is no solar. As nuclear energy declines, currently 24% of total generation, something is going to have to replace it. Coal is dead, so that pretty much leaves natural gas.

The second big takeaway: the EIA in this metric, places the entire North Dakota/Minnesota to Oklahoma/Louisiana corridor in the East which tends to skew the energy breakdown a bit. If the Dakotas, Minnesota, and Iowa were put into the West, where at least the Dakotas belong, the wind situation for the East would be catastrophic.

For me this is how it breaks out;
  • East: coal and natural gas (Marcellus, Utica), and when nuclear goes away, natural gas will approach 75%, maybe more, of source for generated electricity
  • West: coal, natural gas, and a bit of wind, not much solar except as a niche player
  • Texas: natural gas (huge; almost 50% generation), coal, and wind; solar, still inconsequential
By state:

Note: the big takeaway from the graphic above: California wind -- nada, zilch, nil. Even Texas, with all it's wind, is too low to round up over 0%. At least that's what the graphic is telling me.

The graphic below is pretty "spectacular" until you realize:
  • that we are still talking only 6%; as natural gas increases, the "wind percentage" could actually drop
  • most of that wind generation is in the West and Texas; almost none in the East; and,
  • the US is slowly running out of "locations" for wind energy (for a number of reasons).

The misinformation provided by warmists has become incredibly tiresome. From Breitbart:
CNBC viewers are being snookered.

The business news network featured an article in the “Sustainable Energy” section of its Website that proclaimed: “Renewables surged past coal in 2015 to become world’s biggest source of electricity: IEA.”

In reading that headline, one might get the impression that wind turbines and solar panels produced more electricity last year than coal. But the fine print actually reveals a very different picture.

The opening paragraph of the article by “Freelance digital reporter” Anmar Frangoul gives a clue as to the sleight of hand being used. Frangoul cites the International Energy Agency (IEA) as reporting that “Renewable energy moved past coal in 2015 to become the biggest source of global electricity capacity.” The key word there is “capacity.”

What’s noteworthy is that capacity is far different from actual production. The average wind turbine has a maximum rated capacity of roughly 2 megawatts. That means, if the wind is blowing between 26-56 mph, the turbine can spin up to its peak generating capacity. In such moments, the wind turbine can produce its full 2 megawatts.

However, wind turbines, like solar panels, offer only intermittent power generation. Wind turbines can only produce power when there is sufficient wind—and when they are not shut down due to cold weather, repairs, or high winds. And solar panels only produce electricity during periods of direct sunlight. Thus, while a wind turbine can have a maximum capacity of 2 megawatts, its typical output may often be far less, or even 0 megawatts (on a windless day).

In contrast, and as the IEA itself notes, coal provided 40.8 percent of worldwide power generation in 2014. The renewables that Frangoul crows about—defined by the IEA as “geothermal, solar, wind, heat, etc.”—produced only 6.3 percent of all power.

Thus we see some of the misleading language in the CNBC article.

Frangoul talks about renewables producing 23 percent of world power generation in 2015—which is only possible when hydropower’s robust 16.4 percent is added to renewables’ paltry 6.3 percent share.
And while the IEA says that “renewables represented more than half the new power capacity around the world” in 2015, one has to remember their frustrating intermittency.
Wind turbines only generate roughly 20 percent of their installed capacity, and solar panels yield an even more meager 10 percent. 
Much more at the link. Wow, it gets tiresome. 

CLR To Report A Nice Bakken Well Thursday -- October 26, 2016

OPEC: Organization of Producers Exempt from Cuts/Caps. 

Active rigs:

Active Rigs3668194182186

Wells coming off confidential list Thursday:
  • 31753, 950, CLR, Maryland 2-16H,  Catwalk, 38 stages, 8.2 million lbs, t5/16 cum 84K 8/16;
  • 32558, SI/NC, SM Energy, Martin 2-4HN, Burg, no production data,
Two new permits:
  • Operator: Petro-Hunt
  • Field: Little Knife (Dunn)
  • Comments:
Three permits renewed:
  • CLR (3): one Chicago permit and two Charlotte permits, all in McKenzie County.
One DUC reported as completed:
  • 28015, 816, Petro-Hunt, USA 153-95-23C_14-2HS, Charlson, t10/16; completed, apparently, but absolutely no production; 
31753, see above, CLR, Maryland 2-16H,  Catwalk:

DateOil RunsMCF Sold

Memo to self: come back to this later. And the national debt. And this.

Nothing About The Bakken -- Monet's Bathers -- October 26, 2016

Wow, this makes my day.

A few weeks ago, a spectacular, special exhibit of Monet's early years opened at the Kimbell Museum in Ft Worth, TX. We visited the exhibit the first Tuesday, the second day the exhibit was opened to the public. I was overwhelmed. I was in awe. At that visit last week I mostly just took in the paintings but did not read much about them. I was not interested in the descriptions, or the history, or the critiques. I just wanted to see the paintings, some of which I had seen in Europe, and had not seen for years, and will likely never see most of them again.

Yesterday we visited the exhibit again (it's half-price for seniors on Tuesdays) -- and we will visit at least twice more, once with the granddaughters and once more just before the exhibit moves to San Francisco, its only other venue.

But yesterday, I  went to learn. We were the first ones in the gallery; it would fill up within 45 minutes, so like an impressionist painting, I had to be fast.

I learned a lot.

One vignette: in his early years Monet and his wife had been disowned by his family; he was dirt-poor; and they could go a week without bread, heat, or light. Without Renoir's generosity, Monet may have literally starved to death. His stimulant was oil painting.

Be that as it may, Renoir and Monet, side-by-side, painted swimmers at a swimming hole on the Seine River, in English, "Swimmers at La Grenouillère." From wiki:
La Grenouillère was a popular middle-class resort consisting of a spa, a boating establishment and a floating café. Optimistically promoted as "Trouville-sur-Seine", it was located on the Seine near Bougival, easily accessible by train from Paris and had just been favoured with a visit by Emperor Napoleon III with his wife and son. Monet and Renoir both recognized in La Grenouillère an ideal subject for the images of leisure they hoped to sell.
Monet and his family were living in Bougival at the time.

I write all that to write this. Today, while reading Edmund de Waal's The Hare With Amber Eyes, on page 78:
He (Charles Ephrussi), living in Paris at the time (back in the 1870s) bought a spectacular painting by Monet of bathers, Les bains de la Grenouillère.
Wow! Completely unexpected!

As noted above, Renoir and Monet painted La Grenouillère side-by-side. Renoir painted three paintings (sketches, of course), and Monet, two. Monet's two paintings were "sketches" -- very accomplished sketches, of course -- which he would use to paint a larger, finished canvas.

Monet's larger, finished canvas of the bathers has never been found; it is presumed destroyed. From wiki:
A bigger size painting, now lost but formerly in the Arnhold collection in Berlin, may well have been the "tableau" that he dreamed of.
De Waal's The Hare With Amber Eyes is the story of his family's wealth in art, particularly Japanese ceramics, the netsuke, and how objets d'art are moved along through history.

Everything his family owned was stolen or destroyed by the Nazis in the 1940s -- except for the 264 netsuke.

Renoir's and Monet's paintings of the bathers are important in the art world for this reason: this appears to be the turning point in Monet's career as well as a turning point in the history of art.

I wondered where Monet's finished painting of La Grenouillère is; now I know.

Note: with regard to The Hare With Amber Eyes. The author is Edmund de Waal, the #1 ceramicist in England at the time the book was written. It's hard to tell from the family tree, but if I have it right, Edmund is the grandson of Hendrik de Waal, who married into the Ephrussi family when he married Elisabeth, the daughter of Victor [which would be the author's great-grandfather], who in turn was the son of Ignace von Ephrussi [the author's great-great-grandfather), the second-born son to the patriarch, Charles Joachim Ephrussi, b.1793 - 1864. Charles, who figures prominently as the collector of the 264 netsuke in the book was born 1849 (Odessa) and died 1905 (Vienna). Charles was the son of the first-born son of the patriarch Charles, thus making the author a distant nephew of Charles.

A Note For The Granddaughters

For Monet, he used two words for sketches: pochade and esquisses.

These are not sketches in "my" sense of the word. These are often the 2' by 3' paintings by famous painters seen in the best museums of fine art. The pochade "comes first" and then later, the artist paints the esquisse, sort of like the final dress rehearsal before the opening of a London stage play, for which folks pay to see.

These "sketches" (paintings by another name) are then the "models" for the final large, often wall-sized painting that may or may never be seen except by a very fortunate few. When these paintings get that large, it is hard for the artist (or any owner) to hide them or protect them from being stolen.

Next time you visit a fine arts museum, watch the small print: if the curator is very precise, you may see the word "sketch" more often than "painting."

Nothing About The Bakken -- October 26, 2016

A list.

Bring it on. North American Wind Power: Xcel has plans for huge Midwest wind portfolio --
  • Dickey County, ND: 150 MW project, NextEra Energy Resources, Foxtail Wind
  • Freeborn County, MN: 200 MW project, Invenergy, Freeborn Wind Energy
  • Lincoln County, MN: 200 MW project, Geronimo Energy, Blazing Star 1
  • Lincoln County, MN: 200 MW project, Geronimo Energy, Blazing Star 2
Dickey County lies a couple of counties east from the Standing Rock Reservation, most likely on sacred tribal burial grounds, and along the South Dakota border.

These projects will bring a lot of money to ND and MN; and will make a lot of farmers rich, especially those farmers growing corn to support the highly-subsidized ethanol industry. North Dakota is quickly becoming the Elon Musk of renewable energy among the 50 states.

But best of all, these projects will require a lot of fossil-fuel back-up.

If Americans like wind energy, they might as well send their money to North Dakota, as long as those wind farms are not in my backyard (I have never been in Dickey County as far as I know).

Amazon Not Stealing Costco's Customers

Over at Yahoo!Finance.

This is a great story. Amazon is place to buy books or pick up that one item you forgot or didn't see at Costco.

Costco, on the other hand is a destination.

Costco is a destination for shoppers. A destination. Sort of like a cruise ship stay-cation. Once a month or once-a-week. Duty free (local sales tax and that's it). And at Costco, one doesn't window shop with plans to buy it "cheaper" at Amazon. Whether or not it would be available at Amazon, it doesn't matter.
  • the price at Costco "can't be beat" 
  • hey, that's why we're here -- to buy, not window shop
  • I brought the SUV; I have plenty of room for these huge packages; why else would I have a(n) SUV?
  • this is what you do on stay-cations: you shop
  • Costco is a social outing; Amazon is something you do when alone at home (or more likely bored at work)
  • it's a shame to leave a huge shopping cart half-filled 
  • all Costco shoppers -- regardless of ethnic background -- "share" white privilege: one has to be a member to shop at Costco; they don't let just anyone in; and, now that I'm in, I'm gonna shop
  • Costco has the best hot dogs in the world; and they only cost a buck
Random Thoughts On EVs

I have spent a large portion of my adult life in England. If I had all the money in the world, one of my homes would be in northern England, near Scotland, overlooking a river.

I've often thought that if any country was the perfect country for EVs, it would be England, or Great Britain, in general. The Brits love to pay "up" for quality; they are used to high taxes; their commuting distances are short. So I was curious. I assume wiki would provide the quickest answer but I chose not to look at wiki. Instead, I went to a site where they love EVs, insideevs.

The link is from an article almost a year old, but it pretty much told me everything I needed to know:
the Brits prefer plug-in hybrids, not all-electric cars
  • November, 2015: registered EVs in the UK -- 1.27%
  • December, 2014: registered EVs in the UK -- 1.29% (the "previous" record)
  • growth rate has been slightly over 20% year-over-year (so the fact that registrations as a percent dropped, means that overall Brits are buying more cars, but not necessarily more EVs -- as a percent of vehicles sold)
Spin it however one might, this is not a good news story for EVs. This comes on top of a recent story that the Germans have lost their appetite for EVs, also. 

The real question is to what extent the British government is marketing/incentivizing EVs. The price of gasoline  per gallon in:
  • Netherlands, Amsterdam: $6.48
  • Norway, Osla: $6.27
  • Denmark, Copenhagen: $5.96
  • UK (London): $5.79
  • NYC: $2.16
By the way, Venezuela? $0.12. Yes, 12 cents a gallon. Assuming there is gasoline to be found.

The difference in price between gasoline in London and the price of gasoline in NYC: taxes.

That should probably answer the question to what extent the British government is marketing/incentivizing EVs.

Another List

If I have time, I might come back to this. Someone else pointed this out. It's now an original thought with me, but I have not seen this list before:
  • The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
  • Girl with Pearl Earring
  • Girl in the Dark
  • The Girl on the Train 
While traveling earlier this month, or was it last month, I forget, I missed a number of New Yorker magazine issues. I thought I had caught up with them all, but it appears I missed one of the better issues, the September 26, 2016, issue. That's what got me thinking about the list above.

Among many, many other good articles in that issue, there's a nice review of Ron Howard's new Beatles movie (which I do not plan to see). The reviewer references one of the best movie scenes ever:
... if you want to know how Uma Thurman felt, in Pulp Fiction, when that syringe of adrenaline was harpooned into her chest, here's your chance (Howard's movie on the Beatles).

I noted earlier that The New Yorker "missed it by that much" when the profile of Leonard Cohen appeared about the same time that Bob Dylan was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. To make up for that, The New Yorker has a black/white caricature of a young Bob Dylan on the cover of this week's issue, but, of course, no article on him in this issue.

Unfortunately this week's issue appears to be have been written and edited by a Hillary Super PAC.

And we move on.

Bakken 2.0: Active Rigs Up To 36 -- October 26, 2016

Bakken 2.0: from OilPrice -- 
  • remember: East Coast analysts tell us that DUCs cannot come on line "overnight"
  • analysts forecast: a build of two million bbls
  • actual: almost 2 1/2 times that amount -- 4.8 million bbls
  • vs draw of over 5.2 million bbls previous week
  • WTI drops below $50
Oil companies shift exploration tactics, curb spending -- The Wall Street Journal I didn't see that one coming. LOL.

US said to be closing in on PDVSA-linked seizures, charges. Bloomberg. Tick, tick, tick.

Oil and natural gas revenues importance:
  • to Saudi Arabia -- accounts for 90%+ of their national budget revenue
  • to Russia -- accounts for 40%+ of their national budget revenues -- EIA, Oct 25, 2016
The Russian Northern Fleet is off the southwestern coast of Portugal; should reach its destination a few days before US national election (to do this at home, click here; at the toolbar at the top, click on the "ship icon" to bring down the drop-down menu, and click on "All Vessels"; begin to type in "Nikolay" in the search box at the left, and then click on "Nikolay Chiker"; then click on "Latest Position" if it doesn't automatically show latest position; leave photo of the tug on the screen, but you can move it out of the way; then use +/- icons to zoom out to see where the Northern Fleet is located). The tug is part of the fleet. Since my last search 12 hours ago, the tug has turned from a southerly direction to a southeasterly direction headed to Gibralter. The new position was "received" 5 1/2 hours ago, so if there was not a "waiting line" to get through the chokepoint, I assume the Fleet is moving through the strait.

Back to the Bakken

Active rigs:

Active Rigs3668194182186

RBN Energy: Supplying Mexico's growing natural gas demand, part 2.

The Market

AAPL shares drop below $114.

Comcast shares surge.

Mid-morning trading: wow, that's a surprise. Market goes green. WTI recovers a bit. AAPL still down 3%. 

Open: market down about 80 points.


Valiant Ambition: George Washington, Benedict Arnold, and the Fate of the American Revolution
Nathaniel Philbrick
c. 2016
DDS: 973.4 PHI
Chapter 12
The Crash
August - October, 1780. The Brits and colonists have been at war more than three years. Getting tired. Colonists divided among themselves. Benedict Arnold has "turned."
Arnold at his headquarters on the east side of the Hudson, north of NYC, a little more than a mile down river from West Point on the west side of the river. Arnold's headquarters: the Robinson house.

Still invalided with his bad left leg.

Could sail up and down the Hudson; 8 oarsmen and a coxswain.

He was commander of West Point. He did not know if Clinton, CinC at Brit NYC had accepted Arnold's terms. Needed to find out. 

Learns from a spy that Clinton has accepted Arnold's terms, especially if Arnold can guarantee capture of 3,000 troops at West Point.

Arnold learns of stunning defeat of colonist Benjamin Lincoln at Charleston. Following that, Continental Congress appoints Horatio Gates as commander of the southern army. 

Then Gates loses one of the bloodiest and most humiliating defeats of the war, Camden, SC.

The war not going well for any of the colonists, and Arnold, the commander of West Point has turned sides, and many colonists have had enough.
The story of the British spy Andre who at 30 had risen to Clinton's adjutant general. 
Now, down to Sandy Hook, south of NYC harbor. British admiral George Rodney with a fleet of 16 ships had arrived.  

Arnold and Andre take Rodney into their confidence.

HMS Vulture arrives south of West Point.

Arnold has reasons to get to the Vulture

It just so happens that Geo Washington, His Excellency, is going to cross the Hudson at King's Ferry that afternoon on his way to Hartford, CT.

Arnold and Geo Washington had a brief meeting; the last time they would see each other.

Geo Washington and 50 officers continue to Hartford (including Alexander Hamilton, Henry Knox, and Lafayette).

Arnold told the Brits he would help them take West Point, but they had to attack on September 23, because Geo Washington was coming back after that date to inspect West Point.

Andre and Arnold make plans during the night.

Incredibly, the colonists start firing on the Vulture -- it had no choice but to scoot down the river to safety, leaving Andre and potential glory behind.