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Author: Subject: Things aren't so bad afterall...

Peach Extraordinaire





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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 10:27 AM
This article put a smile on my face and filled me with Christmas cheer this morning. Feel free to dismiss it out of hand because of the source but it's good to remember things are tough all over. Many places potentially far worse than here. Ho, ho, ho.

# # #

THE IMPENDING COLLAPSE OF OUR ENEMIES
By DICK MORRIS & EILEEN MCGANN

The Depression -- let’s call it what it is -- leaves us, well, depressed. But there is very good news from around the world. Our enemies are collapsing under the strain of dropping oil and gas prices. What we had all hoped conservation and off-shore drilling would achieve, the global economic collapse is accomplishing: the defeat of OPEC, Iran, Chavez, Putin and the weakening of the financial underpinnings of Islamist terrorism. In each of these nations, the hold of the dictator is weakening as, one after the other, they face the consequences of dropping oil prices.

In Iran, the sanctions imposed by the United Nations, the aggressive efforts of the U.S. government, and the actions of states like California, Florida, and Missouri to ban pension investments in companies that do business with Iran are having a big effect. Unable to expand its oil production for a lack of foreign investment, Iran faces the need to slash its budget drastically as energy revenues, the source of 85% of its income, crash. Iranian President Ahmadinejad is announcing harsh austerity measures. Having based his budget on $50-$60 oil, he now must recast it for at a $40 per barrel level. He boasts of cash reserves of $23 billion, but that sum won’t last long unless he makes major cuts. (Do the math: a shortfall of $25/barrel per day x 4 million barrels a day x 365 days = $36.5 billion, more than he’s got on hand).

The question for Ahmadinejad and for the Ayatollah who stands behind him is: Can their regime survive economic collapse? Unable to buy social peace by handouts and subsidies, will the top blow off an country that hates the regime, is predominantly very young, and is only 40% Farci?

Chavez, in Venezuela is not in any better shape. Because of corruption and incompetence, Venezuelan oil production has dropped from over 3 million barrels per day when Chavez took over to about 1.7 million today. As long as oil prices were quadrupling, it didn’t matter, but when they crashed, a harsh wind of reality blew in the door. Chavez was losing popularity before the oil price dropped. He lost a constitutional referendum to give himself lifetime tenure and he just lost his municipal elections in the largest cities and states in the nation. After knocking out most of the major opposition candidates on phony charges of corruption, he managed to hang on to the governorships of the small, rural provinces, but he lost the cities – even the poor areas of the cities vote d against him.

Now, beset already by food shortages and galloping inflation, Venezuela has to make do with less subsidization and drastic cuts. Feeling cold times ahead, Chavez is desperately pressing ahead with a new attempt to abolish term limits in a vote set for the end of February, but, if he falls short – which we think he will – he could be out in a matter of months.

Chavez’ client-states -- Ecuador, Nicaragua, and Bolivia –- have to face life without subsidies. Evo Morales, the head of Bolivia who got elected pledging to allow cocoa cultivation again, already faces a virtual civil war as the energy-rich half of his country wants autonomy and, possibly, independence. Argentina, whose corrupt regime has held onto power by massive borrowing from Chavez, must now seek sustenance from the global markets, only recently burned by its default on its foreign debt. Fat chance.

Putin’s Russia, which so recently threw its weight around by invading Georgia, faces perhaps the biggest hit of all to its economy. Producing 10 million barrels per day, Russia will be hit the hardest by the collapse of prices. (Again, do the math: Assume Russia budgeted at $60 oil prices and the price drops to $40. $20/barrel x 10 million barrels per day x 365 = a $73 billion annual shortfall). With a GDP of only about $1.4 trillion, Russia faces the loss of about 5% of its economy. And Russian oil production has dropped by one million barrels per day for each of the past two years. With prices at rock bottom and nationalization an ever-present threat, who is going to invest in increasing Russian production?

And what of OPEC and the economic base of the Islamist terrorists? Countries like the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, and Kuwait will be OK because they have small populations among whom to divide their oil earnings. Saudi Arabia will make it because of its massive production and relatively small population. But every other OPEC nation has a large population where the ruler, usually a dictator, buys social peace with oil money. The pressure to stay in power will be so intense that these leaders will force production as high as they can to offset the shortfall. The result is that there will be constant deflationary pressure on oil prices, a vicious cycle that will impoverish all the right people.

[Edited on 12/16/2008 by RBK]

 

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Zen Peach



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 11:47 AM
I totally agree that places all over the world have it much worse that what we're facing here. There have been starving people in Africa for as long as I can remember and I don't think anyone in here doesn't have compassion for those other peoples, however, when a person's stomach is empty, when they're losing their house, they tend to think more about their empty belly and it's of greater importance to them than those world wide starving people.

It remains to be seen how bad this is going to get because I read there is another wave of 'race horse deal' mortgages coming due next year and they're predicting over a million more foreclosures.

Oh, just as a side note....all that bailout money we handed out on Wall Street that was supposed to come with the stipulation that the executives won't receive mega bonuses and salaries.....well it seems the Bush administration threw in a little provision that changes the meaning of that. Only companies who are purchased by the government through AUCTION won't be getting the big bucks.....and after 350 billion out the door, so far none of it has been used for auctioned assets.

We've all been had again. I'm getting kind of tired letting Lucy hold the football.

 

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Universal Peach



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 11:57 AM
"Only companies who are purchased by the government through AUCTION won't be getting the big bucks.....and after 350 billion out the door, so far none of it has been used for auctioned assets."

Sadly, your point is but one of the ways in which the Treasury has bungled this bailout.....

 

Peach Extraordinaire



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 01:49 PM
quote:
I totally agree that places all over the world have it much worse that what we're facing here. There have been starving people in Africa for as long as I can remember and I don't think anyone in here doesn't have compassion for those other peoples, however, when a person's stomach is empty, when they're losing their house, they tend to think more about their empty belly and it's of greater importance to them than those world wide starving people.




The article has nothing to do with perpetually starving children in Africa who are victims of their perpetually corrupt and inept governments. Rather it is a celebration of the Putins, Ayatollahs and Chavezs of the world potentially enjoying their just desserts.

Thank you for reminding us there ARE, always have been and apparently always will be starving children in Africa and boneheads who live beyond their means here - regardless of how much money we throw at them.

 

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As a patriot and a loyal member of the opposition I pledge to offer our new President the very same benefit of the doubt and unwavering support that the left offered George Bush over the last eight years.

 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 04:29 PM
I agree.....my point is, what we've been seeing recently is about to get even worse given that these people living beyond their means are about to have a cold, hard dose of reality thrown on them which then becomes our problem apparently.

I don't have one of those great mortgage deals and we're not mired in credit card or other debt and I'm not going to be happy when the rest of us get sucked down even further because of it.

 

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Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!


 

Peach Extraordinaire



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 04:39 PM
quote:
I agree.....my point is, what we've been seeing recently is about to get even worse given that these people living beyond their means are about to have a cold, hard dose of reality thrown on them which then becomes our problem apparently.

I don't have one of those great mortgage deals and we're not mired in credit card or other debt and I'm not going to be happy when the rest of us get sucked down even further because of it.


Indeed. I've always lived within my means even when it wasn't fashionable to do so. I can't count how many aquaintances I've known through the years who was looked askance at my choice of neighborhoods but now look like they could cry when they learn my house has been paid for for eons as has most of my middle-school aged kids college.

We're all in it together and unfortunately BarryO is going to play on that in order to "tax us back to prosperity" and try to convince us to live like Europeans.

 

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As a patriot and a loyal member of the opposition I pledge to offer our new President the very same benefit of the doubt and unwavering support that the left offered George Bush over the last eight years.

 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 04:42 PM
We're all in it together and unfortunately BarryO is going to play on that in order to "tax us back to prosperity" and try to convince us to live like Europeans.

Sort of like Bush has tried to bomb Iraq into peace?

 

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Peach Extraordinaire



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 04:52 PM
quote:
We're all in it together and unfortunately BarryO is going to play on that in order to "tax us back to prosperity" and try to convince us to live like Europeans.

Sort of like Bush has tried to bomb Iraq into peace?


Actually, I don't see the comparison. Has Iraq been bombed by the US in the last, oh six years? Did I miss something?

 

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As a patriot and a loyal member of the opposition I pledge to offer our new President the very same benefit of the doubt and unwavering support that the left offered George Bush over the last eight years.

 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 04:56 PM
Was there a time limit on my statement? How about asking if Bush has presided over bombing of Iraq in say the last eight years?

 

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Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!


 

Peach Extraordinaire



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 05:00 PM
quote:
Was there a time limit on my statement? How about asking if Bush has presided over bombing of Iraq in say the last eight years?


Oy gevault. Again with the hair-splitting.

Actually Iraq was bombed to defeat the army there not to create peace, as long as we're splitting hairs.

 

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As a patriot and a loyal member of the opposition I pledge to offer our new President the very same benefit of the doubt and unwavering support that the left offered George Bush over the last eight years.

 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 05:04 PM
Oh no you didn't just try to rewrite history.....Bush did nothing but talk about how US intervention in Iraq was going to bring peace to the region. Although, in all fairness, perhaps they never mentioned that on FOX.

 

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Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!


 

Peach Extraordinaire



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 05:51 PM
quote:
Oh no you didn't just try to rewrite history.....Bush did nothing but talk about how US intervention in Iraq was going to bring peace to the region. Although, in all fairness, perhaps they never mentioned that on FOX.


You're not even splitting hairs now you're just off the rails. In your attempted analogy you referred to the US BOMBING as a way to bring peace (as well you know) which is patently silly. One bombs to force the enemies surrender. Peace comes later. I know what you're driving at of course but YOU made the dodgy analogy and then split hairs-upon-hairs to defend it.

 

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As a patriot and a loyal member of the opposition I pledge to offer our new President the very same benefit of the doubt and unwavering support that the left offered George Bush over the last eight years.

 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 06:05 PM
At least I'm trying....you're just not making sense at all!

 

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Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!


 

Peach Extraordinaire



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 06:06 PM
quote:
At least I'm trying....you're just not making sense at all!


Really? How so? Please, enlighten me.

 

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As a patriot and a loyal member of the opposition I pledge to offer our new President the very same benefit of the doubt and unwavering support that the left offered George Bush over the last eight years.

 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 06:09 PM
Nope....just ponder on it, you'll figure it out on your own.

 

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Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!


 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 06:12 PM
quote:
I know what you're driving at of course...
Clearly you already know the answer here ... you've stated as much in your posts.

[Edited on 12/16/2008 by lolasdeb]

 

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Peach Extraordinaire



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 06:14 PM
quote:
Nope....just ponder on it, you'll figure it out on your own.


I figured as much.

Did you even bother to read the article at the top of the thread or did you jump in just to play "gotcha"?

 

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As a patriot and a loyal member of the opposition I pledge to offer our new President the very same benefit of the doubt and unwavering support that the left offered George Bush over the last eight years.

 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 06:16 PM
Did you bother to read my reply and understand what I wrote.....I was, in most part, agreeing with you.

 

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Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!


 

Peach Extraordinaire



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 06:17 PM
quote:
Did you bother to read my reply and understand what I wrote.....I was, in most part, agreeing with you.


Indeed. It was your analogy that ran the thread off the rails.

 

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As a patriot and a loyal member of the opposition I pledge to offer our new President the very same benefit of the doubt and unwavering support that the left offered George Bush over the last eight years.

 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 06:17 PM
No, it was your lack of understanding my analogy that ran it off the rails.

 

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Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!


 

Peach Extraordinaire



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 06:19 PM
quote:
No, it was your lack of understanding my analogy that ran it off the rails.


Your analogy was an attempt to change the subject and had no bearing on the discussion at hand.

 

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Maximum Peach



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 06:38 PM
Back to the originating post........

Morris is being very short-sighted - no surprise. All that needs to happen is a little regional conflict, say another Israel/Palistinian flair up, or somebody sink a tanker in the Straits of Hormuz, or Russia invading Georgia (or even worse; the Ukraine), and oil prices will shoot to the moon once again. Within days it will be over $100/barrel.

This is a temporary calm - it won't last long.

 

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Zen Peach



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  posted on 12/16/2008 at 06:44 PM
quote:
quote:
No, it was your lack of understanding my analogy that ran it off the rails.


Your analogy was an attempt to change the subject and had no bearing on the discussion at hand.


No, my analogy was that in the grand scheme of world events, things aren't so bad for this country after, however we live in this country and the people who are getting laid off are viewing it through more personal eyes and for them, it doesn't matter what's going on anywhere else....it's bad for them. And that, contrary to what you're trying to imply, is relevant to the subject at hand.

 

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Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!


 

Peach Extraordinaire



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  posted on 12/17/2008 at 12:48 PM
quote:
Back to the originating post........

Morris is being very short-sighted - no surprise. All that needs to happen is a little regional conflict, say another Israel/Palistinian flair up, or somebody sink a tanker in the Straits of Hormuz, or Russia invading Georgia (or even worse; the Ukraine), and oil prices will shoot to the moon once again. Within days it will be over $100/barrel.

This is a temporary calm - it won't last long.


I've little doubt Russia would drum up a war to get the oil prices back up. When they do the dimmer half of the American citizenry will blame Bush.

 

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True Peach



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  posted on 12/17/2008 at 01:01 PM
quote:
quote:
Back to the originating post........

Morris is being very short-sighted - no surprise. All that needs to happen is a little regional conflict, say another Israel/Palistinian flair up, or somebody sink a tanker in the Straits of Hormuz, or Russia invading Georgia (or even worse; the Ukraine), and oil prices will shoot to the moon once again. Within days it will be over $100/barrel.

This is a temporary calm - it won't last long.


I've little doubt Russia would drum up a war to get the oil prices back up. When they do the dimmer half of the American citizenry will blame Bush.


and more shoes will be thrown at him. at least it was not one of Shaq O'Neals size 23 shoes.

[Edited on 12/17/2008 by OldDirtRoad]

 

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