Monday, August 4, 2008

Sitting On A Fortune

Mike Snyder of the Houston Chronicle: West Texans jaded instead of giddy during this oil boom

KERMIT — The lights on the rigs pierce the black West Texas night, illuminating mesquite shrubs and jack rabbits scampering across the flat landscape. The glow sends a reassuring message: Good times have returned to the oil patch.

Pump jacks nod vigorously alongside the highway. Fat royalty checks arrive monthly in the mailboxes of ranchers and other landowners. Teachers and retail clerks abandon their jobs for better-paying work in the oil fields as long-idle wells surge to life.

Yet, the people of Kermit and other Permian Basin towns have learned that petroleum-based prosperity is too fragile to squander in wild exuberance. They're paying off debts and investing in public institutions that will endure beyond the boom-and-bust cycles of the oil business.

"I've pissed away three booms in my lifetime, but this time, no," said Gary Blue, 43, who says his business preparing sites for drilling is turning down about as much work as it accepts these days.

Rodney Hayes, 49, who owns Kermit's only floral shop, said he and his neighbors haven't forgotten what happened when oil prices plummeted in the 1980s and the town's population dropped from 10,000 to its current 6,000 in a matter of months.

"It was like a suitcase parade" as companies and their workers left town, Hayes said. ...

Stefanie Haley, 70, has learned to take the swings in the oil business in stride during the decades she has lived in West Texas. Her family owns a ranch west of Kermit where companies are producing natural gas, and she works in a related family business that supplies saltwater that helps maintain pressure in wells.

Haley's daughter has planned a party to celebrate the dream home that contractors are building on a section of the ranch that she and her brother own. Haley calls it "the house that gas built."

The gas beneath the ranch, Haley said, is buried deep in the earth — too deep to justify the expense of extracting it until recently.
There must be a lot of cows living in the mantle.


Anaconda said...


August 4, 2008
NEW YORK - Oil prices plunged in a massive sell-off Monday, falling below $120 a barrel for the first time since early May after Tropical Storm Edouard appeared unlikely to threaten oil and natural gas facilities in the Gulf of Mexico.

Also weighing on prices was a report by the Commerce Department that consumer spending fell in June as shoppers dealt with higher prices for gasoline, food and other items. That fed investors' beliefs that a U.S. economic slowdown is forcing Americans to cut back on energy use.

Light, sweet crude for September delivery fell more than $5 at one point to $119.50 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, its lowest level since May 6. The contract later recovered slightly, trading $3.92 lower, or 3.13 percent, at $121.18 a barrel. Crude has now fallen in six of the last nine sessions and has shaved 18 percent off its trading record of $147.27 reached July 11.


Also, could it be that the idea of "Peak" oil is losing steam?

And what is causing "Peak" oil to lose steam?

This writer humbly suggests the reality of Abiotic Oil backed up by solid scientific evidence is starting to get "traction" in the investment community.

Knowledgeable investors and those interested in gaining knowledge about the origin of oil and the future prospects for oil supplies are reviewing the Oil Is Mastery website.

"Peak" oil is false. The real history of the oil industry is cyclical "gluts," which the oil majors would love to avoid, as reflected in the following link.

Is the market taking notice that the oil Majors [Are] Not Exploring Or Producing?

Certainly, there are a number of factors involved in the current oil plunge.

In terms of the cited AP story, it seems the "storm" story is a cover for other concerns -- demand destruction -- being #1 on the list, as mentioned in the AP story.

But there are other factors, under the surface -- no pun intended -- that are telling investors that oil supplies are not subject to physical limitation on a meaningful economic horizon.

Abiotic oil is a scientific reality.

Dispute the science:

But remember, "money talks, bullshit walks."

Anaconda said...


It seems the folks living out in West Texas have pretty level heads, more than can be said about some oil bulls as they scream, " 'Peak' oil... but its 'Peak' oil"... sweat rolling down their foreheads, as they feel the mounting pressure resulting from their betting "long" on oil.

"Better get that 'oil bull' a bottle of whiskey to calm him down."

Too many "boom and bust" cycles have happened in West Texans' experience for them to "lose their heads" over this cycle.

They've seen it all before.

Yes, West Texans have felt, first hand, what an oil glut is like.

Although, this time it's not likely to be an "oil glut," just a cooling of the market.

Sometimes, "common sense" is wrong, but in this case, it simply relects past experience.

Anaconda said...


The media is starting to report that Democrats are feeling the political pressure for their flat refusal to allow oil drilling on the outer-continental shelf.

This writer has previously indicated this would happen -- it's a good thing.

Denmark, that paragon of environmental conscienceness is drilling for oil in the North Sea, as is Norway, and Britain, none of them are considered environmental "slouches." In fact, all around the world nations are exploring for oil off their coasts -- but the Democrats won't allow it, here, in the United States.

What in the world is wrong with the Democratic Leadership?

They would strangle America's economy and prevent us from lessening America's foreign oil dependence.

The Democratic Leadership is hurting the "little guy" they claim to represent, to satisfy the "latte sipping" liberal elite.

Offshore drilling is environmentally sound, as testified by the lack of spills in the Gulf of Mexico and by Denmark's own oil drilling in the North Sea.

Democrats should stop blocking oil drilling offshore.

Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic Speaker of the House is hurting America by her reckless "carrying water" for the extreme environmental left.

America needs to produce more oil.

The polls show Americans support drilling offshore by wide majorities.

Shouldn't Democrats in Congress respect the will of the American People?

After all, this is a democracy -- isn't it?

Perhaps, the political pressure for oil drilling offshore will persuade the Democrats to drop their obstructionism.

If not, then the only course available to the American people is to throw the "stinking bums" out of office.

At this point, Democrats deserve no less than a rude "landing on their ass" in the political gutter.