Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Latest On DAPL -- February 28, 2017

Over at Francais Express:
  • hearing held earlier today; this is the last lawsuit (for now)
  • judge hopes to decide on/about March 7, 2017, "final" decision
  • wants operator to give him 48 hours notice if oil were to flow sooner than March 7, 2017, so he could issue ruling before oil flows
  • Judge Boasberg: questioned how the water could be harmed since the pipeline is being built under the Lake Oahe and oil would not likely touch the water in the event of a spill.
  • Native American reply: the pipeline would spiritually degrade the water on the Missouri River because of its presence and that would prevent tribes from carrying out ceremonies because other nearby water sources had been contaminated from decades of mining. 
And exactly how would the pipeline "spiritually degrade" the water? To think this $3.9 billion
pipeline was held up over that "level" of argument.

Soulmates and Shoalmates

I did not know this until yesterday.

Most fish are said to swim in schools. There is an exception.

Quick! Without looking it up, herring do not swim in schools. They swim in ......?

I came across that factoid while reading about the history of salt (previously posted).

I never would have posted that bit of trivia in a million years except I'm listening to the soundtrack to the Coen brothers movie, Inside Llewyn Davis. The song: "The Shoals of Herring."

From wiki:
In biology, any group of fish that stay together for social reasons are shoaling, and if the group is swimming in the same direction in a coordinated manner, they are schooling.
In common usage, the terms are sometimes used rather loosely. About one quarter of fish species shoal all their lives, and about one half shoal for part of their lives.
Fish use many traits to choose shoalmates. Generally they prefer larger shoals, shoalmates of their own species, shoalmates similar in size and appearance to themselves, healthy fish, and kin (when recognized).
Fish can be obligate or facultative shoalers. Obligate shoalers, such as tunas, herrings and anchovy, spend all of their time shoaling or schooling, and become agitated if separated from the group. Facultative shoalers, such as Atlantic cod, saiths and some carangids, shoal only some of the time, perhaps for reproductive purposes. 
And I probably would not have even noticed any of this except a reader, a long time ago, introduced me to one of my favorite DVDs: Muscle Shoals.

Fare Thee Well, "Inside Llewyn Davis, Oscar Isaac

Fox Business News Slamming CNBC -- February 28, 2017

I knew it was startling, but not this startling! I saw the headline earlier and linked the article, but it is quite amazing:
FBN averaged 218,000 viewers during the hours between 9:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. in February, an increase of 59 percent over February 2016. CNBC, meanwhile, dropped from 212,000 to 182,000 in the same measurement, Nielsen Media Research said.
That's a startling change for a marketplace where CNBC was once considered the unquestioned leader. But CNBC has suggested those raw numbers are deceptive: the network stopped using Nielsen as a basis for advertising sales two years ago because the service did not measure viewership in offices or anyplace out of the home, and also short-changed its count of wealthier viewers that CNBC targets. Nielsen says it will begin counting out-of-home viewership starting in April.
Fox Business Network traces its surge to a decision in 2015 to load its daytime lineup with more of its most prominent hosts: Maria Bartiromo, Stuart Varney, Neil Cavuto, Trish Regan and Liz Claman — all CNBC alumni. The network also takes a broader view of business news than its competitors; during Regan's show on Tuesday, most of the talk was political, discussing President Donald Trump's upcoming speech before Congress.
The network also takes a broader view of business news than its competitors" -- also less fake news on Fox Business News.

Futures Look Good Going Into Tomorrow

All indices are up right now, after the presidential address to Congress. 

Whiting With Two More Bakken Permits -- February 28, 2017

Active rigs:

Active Rigs4038119192183

Two new permits:
  • Operator: Whiting
  • Field: East Fork (Williams)
  • Comments: the last consecutive sixteen permits have all been Whiting permits; all permits from February 21st through today have been Whiting permits; of the 125 permits issued by NDIC to date, this calendar year, fifty (50) have been Whiting permits
Three producing wells (DUCs) reported as completed:
  • 28991, 2,120, CLR, Radermecher 2-22H1, Camel Butte, t2/17; cum --
  • 28998, 1,880, CLR, Radermecher 4-22H2, Camel Butte, t2/17; cum --
  • 31639, 2,640, BR, Old Hickory 43-32 MBH-R, Sand Creek, 4 sections, t2/17; cum -- 
All Of The Above

Meanwhile, Stark County has approved a very, very contentious wind farm. Bismarck Tribune:
  • Brady Wind Energy Center I
  • northern Stark County near Dickinson
  • $250 million project; 150 MW ($1.7 million / MW; I don't know if that includes the transmission line)
  • NextEra Energy Resources
  • PSC voted unanimously to approve it
  • includes a 19-mile transmission line
  • longest wind farm hearing in state history; 15 hours of testimony, March 31, 2016
  • sounds like most area residents were against it except for the landowners that gain financially; I could be wrong; that was my impression

Random Update Of A Hess Re-Frack: HA-Mogen, Hawkeye Oil Field -- February 28, 2017

The well, API 33-053-02811:
  • 16694, 348, Hess, HA-Mogen-152-95 0805H-1 ST2, Hawkeye, t12/07; cum 310K 12/16;
Production profile around time of re-frack (no production from 2/12 to 10/14):


Original frack production data:

Random Update Of An MRO Re-Frack: Bottleson 34-22H, Reunion Bay -- February 28, 2017

The well, API, 33-061-00548:
  • 16687, 600, MRO, Bottleson 34-22H, Reunion Bay, t11/08; cum 376K 12/16;
Production profile around the time of the re-frack:

The Trump Economy, T+39, Off The Chart; Making It Illegal To Hire A Person With Limited Skills -- February 28, 2017

Consumer confidence soars to 15-year high (that would encompass both the Obama administration -- hope and change -- and the Bush administration -- more of the same). One wonders where we would be if Hillary were president.
February's reading of 115 topped the 15-year high of 113.7 set back in December after Donald Trump's election victory. Best reading since July, 2001.

So, what's the market doing? Flat, crawling back from a negative opening. Yesterday: twelve consecutive days of record-setting closes -- ties record.

Back to the Oscars. My hunch -- the conspiracy theorists are correct on this one.

Worth repeating: As Nobelist Milton Friedman correctly quipped, “A minimum wage law is, in reality, a law that makes it illegal for an employer to hire a person with limited skills.”

Neanderthal Man: In Search of Lost Genomes
Svante Paabo
c. 2014
DDS: 569.986 PAA

The author: director of the Department of Genetics at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany. In 2009, Time names him one of the 100 Most Influential People in the World. Most likely just behind President Obama.

I never thought about this before:
Each of us carries only one type of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), which comprises a mere 0.0005 percent of our genome. Since we carry in each cell thousands of copies of just the one type, it is particularly easy to study, unlike the rest of our DNA -- a mere two copies of which are stored in the cell nucleus: one copy from our mother and one copy from our father.
Neanderthal bones first discovered in a small cave in a quarry in Neander Valley in 1856, a few years before the US civil war and three years before the publication of Darwin's The Origin of the Species.

Neanderthal disappeared some 30,000 years ago.

Most common type of damage to DNA:
  • occurs spontaneously
  • whether nuclear DNA or mtDNA
  • the loss of a chemical component
  • the chemical component that is loss: an amino group
  • an amino group on the cytosine nucleotide (C)
  • the loss of that amino group on C turns C into uracil (U)
  • U is not naturally found in DNA (it is found in RNA)
  • enzymes remove the U's from DNA; excreted in urine
  • about 10,000 C's per cell morph into U's each day, only to be removed and replaced
  • and, this is just one of several types of chemical assaults our genomes suffer.
Polymerase chain reaction (PCR): technique invented by the maverick scientist Kary Mullis in 1983
from a single DNA fragment, it is possible, in principle, to obtain a trillion copies after forty cycles
awarded the Nobel Prize in chemistry in 1993

Early on:
We compared our 379-nucleotide Neanderthal mtDNA sequence to the corresponding mtDNA sequences from 2,051 present-day humans from all around the world. On average, twenty-eight (28) of the positions differed between the Neanderthal and a contemporary person, whereas people alive today carry an average of only seven (7) differences from one another. The Neanderthal mtDNA was four times as different.
Figure 1.3 on page 13: the mtDNA tree of all humans alive today --
  • all trace back to one common mtDNA ancestor ("Mitochondrial Eve")
  • Neanderthal does not trace back to "Mitochondrial Eve"
  • Mitochondrial Eve: lived between 100,00 and 200,000 years ago
  • the common ancestor linking Mitochondrial Eve and Neanderthal Man lived about 500,000 years ago
Independent lab chosen to confirm:
  • Penn State University
  • Mark Stoneking
  • Stoneking had been a graduate student and then a postdoc with Allan Wilson at Berkeley 
  • author knew him when the author was a postdoc at Berkeley in the 1980s
  • Stoneking: one of the people behind the discovery of Mitochondrial Eve
  • Stoneking: one of the architects of the out-of-Africa hypothesis of modern human origins: the idea that modern humans originated in Africa some 100,000 to 200,000 years ago, then spread around the world, replacing all earlier forms of humans, such as Neanderthals in Europe, without admixture
  • Anne King also in Mark Stoneking's lab
Background regarding three journals:
  • Nature, British
  • Science, US
  • Cell
Competing with out-of-Africa theory: the multi-regional model
  • paleontology-based
  • modern humans evolved on several continents, more or less independently, from Homo erectus
Other names mentioned at this time:
  • Chris Stringer, Natural History Museum in London; paleontologist; early adapter of the out-of-Africa theory
Milford Wolpoff, University of Michigan, a multi-regionalist paleontologist


Beautiful, beautiful day for biking. A thunderstorm is forecast for mid-morning but then the rest of the day should be overcast, humid, and very warm.

I wish Sophia could have been with me this morning. The cows and calves were right up along the fence and she would have loved walking up to them. The cornfield -- plowed under from last year -- was filled with Canadian geese. I saw one blue jay. As a kid, I drew a lot of blue jays and squirrels in art class but I never saw a squirrel or a blue jay in Williston until I was in middle school (we called it "jr high") and I would each lunch at Central? Park. I forget the name of that park. But it was the park near Central Jr High. My lunch usually consisted of a Kraft Velveeta processed cheese-on-processed-white-bread that apparently is now considered bad for one's health. If I was lucky, I might also have an apple. I don't recall what I had to drink; maybe a little thermos with water. I know it wasn't milk; I hated milk. Maybe apple juice. Whatever.

Yesterday, I saw a flock of robins -- so I knew spring was here, and then a few minutes later, a most gorgeous cardinal. It appeared to be a young cardinal so maybe a year old? I don't know. Does a one-year-old cardinal look any different than a 5-year-ld cardinal?

But a great day for spring. And, Sophia and I saw at least a dozen turtles down at the creek at the park.

Last evening, when it was pitch black, about 7:45 p.m. Central Time, I pointed to the bright object almost overhead, to the west-south-west, telling 2 1/2 year-old Sophia that was the evening star. She said one word: "Venus."

I swear on a stack of bibles that's exactly what happened. I pointed to the bright object in the sky, pointed it out telling Sophia it was the "evening star" and said it was "Venus."

I had forgotten that we often look at the stars and I always point out what little I know. It's amazing what young minds remember.

The Political Page, T+39 -- February 28, 2017

Already at work: Trump / Fox News interview at 6:00 a.m. I do not recall any president in modern history with this 24/7 work ethic. And that's why he is not attending the correspondents' dinner -- he takes the office too seriously to engage in frivolous activities.

Cabinet: Wilbur Ross confirmed as Secretary of Commerce overnight. Trump's cabinet remains on track to be confirmed by the end of his second term. Sub-cabinet positions are on track to be confirmed in Mike Pence's first term.

How difficult can self-ordering kiosks be? For more of this, go to YouTube and google Boston Dynamics:

This robot can lift at least 100 pounds for warehouse work. It can go up and down stairs. It can go down snow-covered hills. 

The Energy And Market Page; Saudi Arabia In Deep Doo-Doo, T+39 -- February 28, 2017

In deep doo-doo: if Saudi Arabia "hopes" to see $60 oil in 2017, the country is in deep doo-doo. Oil slumped again today, down almost 1.5% and now below $53 again (10:43 a.m. Central Time).

PipelineNew Jersey OKs gas pipeline through protected Pinelands. The only thing I have a problem with is all this emphasis on jobs in such contentious affairs -- unless they are permanent jobs, perhaps: energy projects should be decided based on need, not jobs.
The company said the vote "recognizes the energy reliability challenges facing southern New Jersey and the balanced solution this project offers. The careful construction of this pipeline will address the energy demands of 142,000 customers in Cape May and Atlantic counties, protect and create jobs, and provide a meaningful opportunity to significantly reduce air emissions."
US electricity: generating capacity increase last year (2016) -- largest net change since 2011. It appears when you subtract the NG retirements from the NG additions, both wind and solar additions (there were "no" wind/solar subtractions) beat out NG last year. That's fine. One last hurrah.

SRE: beats by 3 cents. Revenues beat. A big whoop. Shares in pre-market trading: up a whopping penny on a $108/share stock. Whoopie.

Not a bull's eye: Target shares down 13% in pre-market trading. Story over at The WSJ. From my perspective, Target's problems began with the security breach and then a series of missteps from there. All big-box stores are struggling, but between Wal-Mart and Target, the latter seems to be lagging on many levels. From $66 yesterday to $58 today; apparently the biggest drop since the company went public decades ago.

GDP: 4Q16 - revised: at 1.9%. Unchanged from "first look."

GDP: 1Q17 -- forecast, at GDPNow -- latest forecast: 2.5 percent — February 27, 2017, yesterday.
The GDPNow model forecast for real GDP growth (seasonally adjusted annual rate) in the first quarter of 2017 is 2.5 percent on February 27, up from 2.4 percent on February 16.
The forecast for first-quarter real residential investment growth increased from 7.8 percent to 10.8 percent after the housing data releases last week from the National Association of Realtors and the U.S. Census Bureau.
Canadian Oil Sands: add Shell to the short list of operators who shun the Canadian oil sands --
Exxon Mobil Corp. slashed reserves after removing the $16 billion Kearl oil-sands project in Athabasca from its books last week. A day earlier, ConocoPhillips said that erasing oil-sands barrels had reduced its reserves to a 15-year low. In 2015, Shell itself took a $2 billion charge as it shelved an oil-sands project in Alberta, and last year sold other assets in the area for about $1 billion.
The oil-sand mines in the region are among the costliest petroleum projects because the raw bitumen extracted must be processed and converted to a synthetic crude before being transported to refineries, mainly in the U.S. In addition, Canadian oil sells for less than benchmark U.S. crude because of the cost to ship it and an abundance of competing supplies from shale fields.
Hope springs eternal: via Twitter -- Saudi Arabia "wants" oil to reach $60 in 2017.

More On Target
From Fortune:
The discount retailer on Tuesday reported its third straight quarter of comparable sales declines, as a 34% surge in its digital business was not enough to make up for shoppers' exodus from its stores during the holiday season. And Target expects its struggles to persist this year while it figures out how to re-tool its business.
For the full fiscal year that started on February 1, Target expects a low-single digit decline in comparable sales, coming off a worse than expected 1.5% drop during the fourth quarter.
In contrast, Walmart U.S. last week reported its comparable sales were up 1.8% during the same period.
Some of the initiatives that Target will disclose in detail at its annual meeting with Wall Street analysts later on Tuesday include launching in the next two years 12 new house brands it thinks can eventually garner $10 billion in annual sales, and, perhaps more crucially, lowering its prices on many goods so as to be competitive in the price wars with Walmart and Amazon.com.
Perhaps one of the "12 new house brands" needs to be the "Trump" brand, or the "Ivanka Trump" brand. Just saying. 

Television Is Training Me To Not Watch Television -- Scott Adams -- February 28, 2017

Active rigs:

Active Rigs4138119192183

RBN Energy: will natural gas production in SCOOP/STACK be "OK"?

Scott Adams: television is training me to not watch television.

And right on cue, via Twitter:


Later, 7:57 p.m. Central Time: Fox Business surges in ratings competition with CNBC. Yes, I don't watch CNBC any more during the day; it's all Fox Business for me except first thing in the morning, 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. (if I'm up that early), when I flip between Fox Business and CNBC. Whenever Becky Quick comes on with Warren Buffett, I immediately switch networks. When Maria Bartiromo gets into a long segment I generally switch networks.

Original Post
I agree with what Scott Adams had to say (see link above).

Right after the Trump election, I started watching MSNBC "Morning Joe" but that lasted about ten days. I no longer watch MSNBC. Same old stuff. Same old talking heads. I don't get up early to watch Fox Business News or MSNBC "Squawk Box" any more. In fact, I don't turn on our television set any more.

I now watch television -- if I watch it at all -- on an old MacBook Pro. I have an app that immediately mutes every commercial. The great thing -- the app is free and needs no special effort to install. The app is my left index finger, hitting the mute button on the computer. No remote device and therefore I never "lose" the remote device.

I won't be watching

Monday, February 27, 2017

The Cat's Out Of The Bag -- Or The Envelope -- Nothing About The Bakken -- Monday, February 27, 2017


March 2, 2017: the two PricewaterhouseCooper individuals who have handed out the envelopes for the past several years will no longer have that gig. Announced yesterday or thereabouts. Had there not been a snafu for the best-picture announcement, imagine the possible speech. Conspiracy theorists might be right on this one.

Original Post 

From a first-person account of what happened at the Oscars, best movie, February 26, 2017:
Within moments of Dunaway announcing La La Land as the Best Picture winner, it was clear something was awry.
“Oh my god, it’s Moonlight!” a stage manager said aloud, and into a headset, while starting to pace. “Oh my god! Oh my god!” As the seconds passed and the La La Land producers, Oscars aloft, were well into their acceptance speeches, the low-level confusion backstage turned into jaw-dropping disbelief.
“Oh my f—king God, it’s not La La Land, it’s Moonlight! He’s got the wrong envelope!” said someone from the production crew, hands on head in shock.  “They read the wrong envelope!”
(While both Brian Cullinan and Martha Ruiz, representatives from PricewaterhouseCooper, the accounting firm responsible for tallying the Oscar votes and delivering each envelope to the respective presenters, were backstage throughout the show, I did not witness the envelope hand-off.)
Does anyone else see the problem here?

Let's run through this.

Over and over and over we are told only two people know the results. Only two people. PricewaterhouseCooper. And the list is not written down. It's memorized. That's what we're told.

Hold that thought.

Okay, let's run through the first-person account.

Warren is handed the envelope. Obviously no one can see what's printed on the envelope; even Warren would have missed it had he not pointedly decided to look at what was printed on the envelope. He thought it was a misprint.

He handed the opened card to Faye who read the winner as La La Land -- looking at YouTube videos of this debacle, there was no delay, no hesitation, no questioning -- Faye read the card and then ...
Within moments of Dunaway announcing La La Land as the Best Picture winner, it was clear something was awry.  [Why is it clear that "something was awry?"]
.... according to the first person account above, at least half a dozen folks -- none of them PricewaterhouseCooper employees, but "someone from production crew" ("hands on head in shock" -- "they read the wrong envelope") and "the low-level confusion backstage turned into jaw-dropping disbelief." ["low-level confusion" -- obviously when there is "confusion backstage -- it's more than just a single person]

NOTE: it was not the PricewaterhouseCooper folks standing backstage that came out on-stage to correct things.

So, how any many folks actually do know the results? It sounds like practically everyone involved in production knows the results.

Maybe I'm misreading this, but it seems, from the first-person account, that as soon as Faye read the "best picture goes to...." everyone on the production crew knew she read the wrong card. Considering that La La Land practically won every award but the last award, it would seem that everyone -- if they did not already know the results -- would have had no second thoughts about Faye's words.

This stinks to high heaven. On several levels.


Sixteen Reasons, Connie Stevens, Mulholland Drive

Daily Activity Reports For Friday, Monday -- February 27, 2017

Note: when you get down to the DUCs reported as completed, down below, quick, what's the first thing you notice? Yes, all with incredible IPs. That's been my experience, also. It seems DUCs have higher IPs as a rule than the norm.

Active rigs:

Active Rigs4138119194181

Three new permits (Friday and Monday):
  • Operators: Whiting (2), WPX
  • Fields: East Fork (Williams), Reunion Bay (Mountrail)
  • Comments: this is quite amazing -- how many permits Whiting has over the past month, compared to all other operators in the Bakken;
Sixteen (16) permits renewed:
  • Marathon (5): a Winnie USA permit; a Black USA permit; a St Pierre USA permit; a Robin USA permit; and, a Robin USA permit, all in McKenzie County
  • QEP (4); four Moberg permits, McKenzie County
  • Petro-Hunt (3): three Harry Dunne permits, Stark County
  • Whiting (2): two Bartleson permits, Mountrail
  • NP Resources, LLC (2): two Ellison Creek Federal permits, in Billings County
Six (6) producing wells (DUCs) reported as completed:
  • 31148, 3,005, Whiting, Loomer 44-33-2TFH, Poe, t2/17; cum --
  • 29926, 1,395, Statoil, Paulson 36-1 7THF, Briar Creek, t1/17; cum --
  • 29927, 1,938, Statoil, Paulson 36-1 6H, Briar Creek, t1/17; cum --
  • 30226, 1,560, BR, Old Hickory 42-32TFH, 4 sections, Sand Creek, t1/17; cum --
  • 31038, 1,136, Statoil, Vachal 3-34 7H, Alger, t1/17; cum --
  • 31149, 2,585, Whiting, Loomer 44-33 2H, Poe, t2/17; cum --
One permit canceled:
  • SM Energy: a Christianson permit in Divide County

MRO Re-Fracks; EOG Reports -- February 27, 2107

Some years ago there were a number of posts on the blog about MRO re-fracks. Then, I sort of lost interest.

Here's another one.

EOG Reports: 4Q16 And Full Year

Press release here. Must have been a good report; shares up over 2% after-hours. Right around $100/share. Summary at the press release:
  • exceeds high-end of fourth quarter and full year 2016 crude oil production targets
  • beats fourth quarter and full year 2016 targets for lease and well, transportation and DD&A expenses
  • achieves record capital efficiency gains in 2016
  • replaces 163 percent of 2016 production at low finding cost of $5.22/Boe (excluding price revisions) and increases total net proved reserves by 1.4 percent in 2016
  • targets 18 percent crude oil production growth for 2017 within cash flow at flat $50 oil
  • forecasts flat to lower well costs in 2017
At $50 oil: EOG wins; Saudi Arabia loses.

The Literary Page

From The Wall Street Journal, over the weekend, a review of Lauren Elkin's Flaneuse.
Female pedestrians became common only in the 1880s, when department stores begat publice bathrooms for respectable ladies. 
I was a flaneur before I knew I was a flaneur. We were living in San Antonio when I read a book in which that word was used, and I saw it for the first time -- or at least recalled seeing it for the first time.

And a nod to one of my favorite authors and one of her best (if not her best) books, Mrs Dalloway:
Ms Elkin points that "I love walking in London" is the first sentence spoken by Clarissa Dalloway, Woolf's eponymous heroine whose very name is a dawdle. 
I think I've mentioned more than once, that I've read Mrs Dalloway three times, and have typed the entire book out in blank verse. Along the way I discovered some interesting things about Mrs Dalloway. The novel is a prose poem. It took me about six months, a couple hours each evening. I also typed out one of Virginia Woolf's other books also, The Waves

Four Reasons Why Production / Rig Is Increasing -- RBN Energy -- February 27, 2017

Today's post from Rusty Braziel (RBN Energy) is a must-read. The article will be archived.

The writer posits the four reasons why oil production / rig is increasing at incredibly fast rates:
larger leaseholds: I think this has more to do with economics than with oil production / rig, but "whatever"
  • longer laterals: sort of an obvious explanation; regular readers of the blog have known this for years
  • extra sand: ditto
  • more "choking back": I'm glad he used this term; I often used this term on the blog but never knew if it was correct, and I didn't really think about the derivatives from this phenomenon
It seems to me that almost everything we've learned about tight oil production was learned in the "Bakken."

Nothing was said about re-entry and re-fracking. Or about taking wells off-line for two months every now and then.
Salt: A World History
Mark Kurlandsky
c. 2002
DDS: 553.63 KUR

See this post, also.

Chapter Eight: A Nordic Dream

Time: 13th and 14th centuries
Location: Scandinavia

One of the major commercial uses of salt: to preserve herring, second only to salt cod, in the  European Lenten diet (see earlier chapter).

Fish dealers in Paris, 12th century: harengeres -- herring sellers.

Herring is a Clupeidae, a member of the same family of small, forked-tailed oily fish with a single dorsal fin known as sardines. Anchovies are of a different family but of the same Clupeiforme order as sardines and herring.

Greeks called it alexiium, from the word als or hals, as in Hallstatt, meaning "salt."

Herring became important in the 14th century precisely because north Atlantic countries were becoming important in the 14th century.

A peculiarity of English language: most fish swim in schools; herring swim in shoals -- a word of the same meaning derived from the same Anglo-Saxon root.

Herring can be hard to find due to their peculiarities of feeding behavior.

The reason for the explosive growth of herring 13th and 14th centuries in Scandinavia: greater access to salt (not greater access to herring).

Holland: learned to pickle herring using brine, fresh with no drying at all -- eliminates the risk of its fat turning rancid from exposure to the air.

Poor people at lenten food -- salted, dried fish. Rich people had access to fresh fish.

Cured herring had an even lower standing than salted cod.

Zelle: Hollanders; burning peat that was impregnated with seawater.

The Dutch: green herring.

East Anglia: red herring.

Findon haddocks: near Aberdeen, Scotland.

Surstromming: Bay of Bothnia, between Sweden and Finland.

Sweden: both a north coast and a south coast. On the north coast, herring, sill; and on the south coast, stromming.

Russians: a Baltic salaka and an Atlantic sel'd.

Like garum (see earlier chapter), stromming is fermented, not rotten.

Hanseatic League: 1250 - 1350 -- helped solve the problem of salt shortage.

The Hanseatic story. Hanseatics known as Easterlings, because they came from the east. Easterlings is the origin of sterling -- of "assured value."

The oversupply of herring, and then the American fisheries, helped end the Hanseatic cartel.

The Bakken Is Not Dead -- Mike Filloon At SeekingAlpha -- February 27, 2017

Link here

  • On a per-well basis, Bakken wells continue to see improved production from 2014 through 2016
  • The Bakken play has seen production decreases due to low oil prices, but when the number of completions are considered, production has held up quite well
  • The Bakken does have headwinds when compared to other U.S. plays, but differential improvements are expected once the DAPL is completed
Will be archived.

From the post:
In 2015, the number decreased to 1541. It does show an improvement in production per well. Operators started to target gassier geology, as they found it drove more resource up and out of the well bore. More importantly, well design continues to adapt. These wells produced 13K more barrels of oil and 38K Mcf of natural gas.

In 2016, wells improved by another 8K BO and 22K Mcf.

The improved production continues. Some believe well results are declining because all the best areas (they believe) are drilled out. This doesn't seem to be the case as improvements to design continue to outperform as well costs decrease.
Nothing about re-entry, re-fracks. 

Trilobite! Eyewitness to Evolution
Richard Fortey
c. 2000
DDS: 565.39 FOR

The author is a senior paleontologist at the Natural History Museum in London. He is the author of several natural history books, some of which have won major prizes or been on short lists for major awards.

This is a fun book to read. He uses the subject of trilobites to discuss many other topics. It's a great book for summer reading. 

Self-Ordering Kiosks -- The Next Big Story -- So Yesterday (2013, To Be Exact) -- February 27, 2017

This  is really quite remarkable. One of the top business stories that broke yesterday and continues to have legs today is the story that Wendy's will install self-ordering kiosks at 1,000 locations. Over at the sidebar on the right, I have something called "the next big thing." At that link, you have to look for it, you have to scroll down quite a bit to get to this:
June 15, 2013: kiosk ordering in fast-food restaurants, perhaps in sit-down fancy restaurants; employers don't have to buy health care insurance for iPads.
The link, by the way, takes you to a WSJ op-ed by Trump's first pick for labor secretary, Big Bob's Andy Pudzer. Amazing. Just one more reason why I love to blog. 

I don't know about you, but when I go to McDonald's I order the same thing, every time (occasional exceptions). I can imagine the day when I walk up to a kiosk; the face-recognition technology recognizes me, and automatically brings up my usual order and asks if I want any changes. It may even throw in a few "offers" for a better deal.

By the way, I spoke with a software engineer over the weekend: it turns out facial recognition is going to get better and better with a) artificial intelligence; and, b) quantum computing (which by the way, is a component of AI). 

The Political Page, T+38 -- February 27, 2017


Later, 1:55 p.m. Central Time: Matt has his fingers on the pulse of the American electorate. His page has not been refreshed since this morning. Americans are still pre-occupied with the debacle over the Oscars last night. Meanwhile, Trump has had his televised reality show, and the Dow is on to its 12th consecutive record-setting day.
Original Post

Last night's Oscars: so "yesterday." It is quite amazing how fast things are moving. Over at The Drudge Report it's still all about the flub at the Oscars and the incredibly shrinking ratings. But in the real world, it's all back to Trump. He is hosting the nation's governors and the market goes from -40 to almost flat. Will it go green? Whatever. I digress. It is amazing how fast Trump can change the conversation. Whenever Obama came on, folks changed the channel. Now folks are looking for Trump twitters and/or speeches.

This is truly bizarre:

While typing this, I was listening/watching to Trump's speech to the governors. This guy never quits working. His reality show is every morning. While watching -- over the course of the last 10 minutes or so -- the market went a -40 points to up over 10 points now. Really, really quite remarkable.

Trump: in the last two administrations, the US has spent $6 trillion fighting "wars" in the Mideast.

Stu Varney notes that the Sunday New York Times business section had not one story on the Trump rally:
  • not mentioned: $3 trillion increase in American company market value
  • not mentioned: 11 consecutive days of recording Dow
  • top story: deforestation in the Amazon (you have got to be kidding)
Wendy's kiosks: previously reported -- this is the "sleeper" story of the decade. Think about this: in a few years we have gone from not even hearing about the technology to driverless cars on the road. But relatively nothing about kiosks at fast food restaurants. Compared to driverless cars, how difficult can self-ordering kiosks be? Everybody is looking at the $15 minimum wage as driving this. Wendy's said kiosks will pay for themselves in less then two years -- that's that challenge. Hiring workers / turnover of workers is pretty "steady-eddy" -- no real change from quarter to quarter so investors are not surprised. But putting kiosks in has a huge up-front cost that can spook investors. But what if companies are allowed to write-off that entire investment in the year in which they are bought, rather than depreciating over years or decades. That could be driving Wendy's decision.
In addition, self-ordering kiosks has increased opportunities for data mining. Folks may enter additional information; perhaps take a short survey while / after ordering. Perhaps loyalty rewards. Perhaps Wendys could go cashless. Or CBE (cash by exception). Apple stores are 99% cashless, I assume. One can pay with cash, but there are no visible cash registers.
Issa is an idiot: he calls for a "special prosecutor" to investigate "ties" between Russia and the Trump campaign team. The "special prosecutor" law "expired" in 1999. Issa: an idiot, or clever like a fox.

The Energy And Market Page, T+38 -- February 27, 2017

The Bakken:  not dead yet -- Mike Filloon over at SeekingAlpha Will follow at stand-alone post.


The Market

That's a wrap: twelfth (12th) consecutive day of record-setting closes; breaks 30-year record. I believe one more day and it's an all-time record.

Trump speech to the governors: during the speech the market went from a -40 to a positive 10 points. Now about 5 points into the green. 

Opening: after eleven consecutive days of record-setting Dow, the market crashes at the opening -- down 12 points. -- Alt-left headline.

WTI: up 43 cents, and now at $54.43. The tea leaves suggest we could see pretty significant move on oil.

Stone Energy incurs wider-than-expected losses in 4Q16.

EOG Will Report After Market Closes Today -- February 27, 2017

Active rigs:

Active Rigs4038119194181

RBN Energy: four things driving 2017's "different kind of recovery."

Scott Adams: the climate science debate illusion.

EOG; reports after the market closes today.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Steve Harvey Will Sleep Very, Very Well Tonight -- February 26, 2017

And I'm calling it a night also.

Good luck to all, tomorrow.

Idle Rambling Comparing Two Wells That Were Not All That Great Early On -- Then Their Production Diverged -- February 26, 2017

This is going to be a long note. It is likely to be confusing. It may not be worth the effort. In a long note, there will be factual and typographical errors. If this is important to you, go to the source.

These are two QEP wells very, very close to each other and drilled about the same time. They both had similar births. One died early; one is still alive.

The first QEP well; it may have been killed prematurely; it was never all that good to begin with; its production was about 1,000 bbls of oil/month when it was killed (PA). Monthly production data shortly before it was killed:

Monthly Production Data for well #1:

PoolDateDaysBBLS OilRunsBBLS WaterMCF ProdMCF SoldVent/Flare

Notice: that well was killed in May, 2012.

The second well was drilled/completed/tested at almost the very same time, in early 2008.

This is well #2. This was its production between December, 2011, and May, 2012, to compare with the well above:

That well, well #2, was no better, producing about 1,000 bbls of crude oil / month.

But it was allowed to live.

Look at the production since October, 2015, and to the present. Going from around 1,000 bbls of crude oil / month, it jumped to over 8,000 bbls (extrapolated to full 31 days) in October, 2015:
PoolDateDaysBBLS OilRunsBBLS WaterMCF ProdMCF SoldVent/Flare

I do not know why well #1 was killed and why well #2 was allowed to live. That's unimportant now.

The question is whether well #1 could have come back as strong as #2 came back after it, too, looked like it was never going to do all that well.

The wells:
  • #1, killed: 16959, 971, QEP, Jones 16-14H, Blue Buttes, t6/08; cum 102K 5/12;
  • #2, kept alive: 16960, 768, QEP, Jones 4-23H, Blue Buttes, t4/08; cum 156K 12/16;
  • #3, in the graphic but not discussed in this post: 17266, 912, QEP, Jones 4-24H, Spotted horn, t1/09; cum 186K 12/16;
The graphic: