Wednesday, November 7, 2012

11/7/2012 Namazu Fully Loaded



Namazu, Giant Japanese Catfish Demigod  does a core dump on what he knows about the presidential election, oil and gas production, the recovery, and the not so distant future! This is the big cat fully loaded letting go with both barrels with a vision of the future that is exciting, dangerous, promising , and scary all at the same time. Its our bad luck that Japanese demigod giant catfish can't be a  natural born U..S. citizens.. Because if he could qualify to run, this big catfish is the visionary we should have elected today..

 When you are a force of nature personified, and I like that term I think better than the old "demigod" label ; you are in constant communion with other forces of nature. That not only includes other giant catfish like my cousin Jack, but even non personified forces of nature like oil and natural gas. The most powerful force of nature that I've always been in constant contact with for some reason seems to be blind to itself as a force of nature. That force is the collective intelligence of the human race. It is in fact "of this world" having evolved here and far more powerful than any previous force of nature ever seen on the planet. There is an interplay between the human intelligence force of nature, laws of physics, and deposits of oil and gas that will change the future into something almost barely imaginable for the collective human intelligence. These are developments so big only a giant catfish of a size sufficient to warrant the title "the Earth Shaker" could possibly get his mind around it and communicate it to you.


File:Red state, blue state.svg
Map by Angr licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

As I write today Tuesday, November 6, 2012 the two leggers known as Americans went to the polls to decide by democratic vote, or electoral fraud who will occupy the single most powerful office on earth for the next four years or longer. Today America had a choice between two men, neither one of which is really suited to govern. I'm not going to predict the election results for you because those will be in by the time this is posted on the Internet. The big issue in this election was the economy. Here is a news flash for you, get ready, this is big, this is earth shattering, drum roll please:


 There is a massive and rapid economic recovery coming to be followed by a relatively prolonged period of rising American Prosperity. This recovery/ restoration will be fully manifested within 42 months, possibly as early as 36 months and the first signs that the national media will be able to read are just around the corner. Who ever you elected today as president had nothing to do with this recovery, but the nearly 40% of the electorate that doesn't pay income tax and another 10% or so who are chronically clueless will credit the sitting President at the time with the boom. Who is president will determine whether we will develop our new found riches into a legacy for the future or squander it in useless programs that bring us to ruin when this next economic merry go round stops. Remember you heard all this here first. Print out and keep this posting for the future.

 China's rise is cruising for a bruising. The U.S. is poised to once again to emerge as the World's only full service super power. Two things are about to curb China's growth, their dependency on import hydrocarbon energy, and new technological developments that will render the type of manufacturing that grew their economy, obsolete and not cost effective.

By mid century the force that will curb China's growth as a manufacturer coupled with parallel technological developments in several related areas will present the world and the world's leading nation with an earth shattering conundrum.  If mankind deals  with it with imagination, and energy, and an open mind we may enter an entire new era of human evolution and a thousand years of incredible prosperity and progress. If we deal with it relying on "isms" like socialism, conservatism, libertarianism, or totalitarianism,  we will slide into global war from which the human race, just as it reached the pinnacle of its development self annihilates. I, Namazu the Earth Shaker will explain these predictions in detail below, take notes there is even a little investment information mixed into all of this.

 First as a force of nature myself I'm acutely aware when humans tap into another  force of nature. Americans have in the last few years tapped into natural gas in a big way. Where America was not long ago the major importer of liquefied natural gas America is now way more than self sufficient in it and starting to export. The price of natural gas is dropping. The U.S. is trying to use as much as it can rapidly converting electricity production over from coal to natural gas. People are converting from electricity to natural gas for heating and cooking and by passing electricity no matter how it is generated. The price of natural gas keeps dropping. 

 The desire to export natural gas by the American producers is nothing short of urgent. The price for natural gas is too low in America due to the glut, but there is a demand for it globally. But America has hardly begun to tap its' potential as an exporter. The biggest obstruction to natural gas export is the fact that all but one of our LNG marine terminals were developed as import terminals. They can easily be back engineered to export terminals but the Obama administration is sitting on the permits. The holders of these permits are going to be rich. Legally Obama can't directly charge the permit holders to put millions or even billions in his own pocket, the party pocket, or even favorite federal programs. The permit fee is the permit fee. But traditional Chicago politics dictates that nothing of that much value that you control while in political power is let go for free. Finding a legal and not too unethical looking way to get to tap into the wealth represented by the permits in order to fund political agendas is taking time. 

 Regardless of who occupies the White House in January, those permits will be issued soon. When that happens the United States will  jump practically over night to the number one exporter , number one preferred provider, of liquefied natural gas to the world. This is going to have a big effect on our balance of payments but it is just the start of the fossil fuel driven rehabilitation of the American economy. America has been producing enough domestic oil of late that coupled with the crude oil we import from the OPEC states the United States is now a net exporter of refined petrochemical products which helps create jobs, and relief for our balance of payments. But becoming a net exporter of refined product partially dependent on the import of foreign product is just the start of the coming U.S. oil boom. In the near future any imports will strictly be sent to the U.S. for refining services , America won't need any more foreign crude stocks. Not only will the United States be self sufficient in oil, if America wanted to export crude stock , soon U.S. crude stock available for export will exceed Saudi Arabia. Sound unreal, read on, its not and both of the Presidential candidates knew this as they went into the election.
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Image Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

This is an LNG tanker. There is going to be a need for many of these and other tankers as the  United  States comes back on line as the world's major petrochemical and natural gas producer. If you don't mind taking some investment advice from a giant catfish it would be more reliably profitable to invest in tankers and terminals than in the oil producers themselves. As more oil comes on line the price per barrel will fall. This means volatility for investors in the crude  product producers. As the price falls the product will chase the best prices around the world, creating a reliable boom market for transporters. Of course having said all this as an investor you have to know how to pick a winning tanker operating company. Normally I wouldn't even make this oblique of a suggestion  on common stock investment  but I assume that the readers of the American Admiralty Books Blog .include quite a few experts in the global merchant marine industry. So I'll leave it with this, if you know how to recognize a winning tanker operator or marine liquid cargo terminal operator their stock is going to climb with the oil companies but with far less volatility.. 

 Much of the same technology that brought you the natural gas glut is directly applicable to the extraction of crude oil from shale and other "tight formations". While the "deep water " finds in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico have made the national headlines since the BP Oil spill the real news in new U.S. oil discovery is on shore in the tight formations. While the Republicans have been blasting the Obama administration for dragging their feet on the deep water permits, oil production in the United States has been rising steadily on land, mostly on private lands.   Just one of the new tight formations now technologically feasible to exploit in Texas has more reserves than all of Saudi Arabia. So far, we know of about three such formations in the United States. But here is some news that hasn't been in the oil and gas trades in quite some time.

 There is a belt of oil reserves on land in the United States in the South East stretching in a crescent shape called a "trend" from Alabama through parts of Mississippi and into parts of what is called in Louisiana "the Florida Parishes" that has been known to have bigger reserves than Saudi Arabia since the 1950s.  Most of the reserve is in private hands. Unfortunately for all of the speculators in mineral rights in the region since the 1950s, most of this oil is laced with "sour gas" or hydrogen sulfide.  This makes it dangerous and expensive to drill. At one point it was estimated that in order to economically recover the oil in this on shore trend gasoline would have to be selling for eight dollars a gallon. With all of the new tight formations coming in, gasoline prices are poised for a fall, yet"landsmen",
the guys who arrange drilling leases, and mineral rights with private property owners are active in the areas of this trend again.  Exploration is in progress so one has to wonder if insiders in the oil industry know of a pending new technological break through that will suddenly make these reserves safe and economical to produce. Suddenly it almost seems like there is no end to U.S. crude oil  reserves. 

But it takes some time for all of this to manifest itself in the economy. Wells have to be drilled, production units moved into place, and there is the political process of the necessary permits. The U.S. oil industry is trying to low profile the finds in order to not set off a U.S. politician feeding frenzy that will run from county supervisors , through the halls of Congress, to the White House. Both of the men who just ran for President know most of this. Obama was trying to figure a more or less legitimate way to benefit from the LNG export terminal permit process. Romney had a very good reason for making what seems like a campaign promise to create "12,000,000 new jobs". That is the predicted number of new jobs that the new oil boom should generate in the next three to five years. Most political pundits call his promise impossible. As potentially president, Romney knows that all he has to do is not interfere with the boom and he will be credited with it. 

 Obama on the other hand is already interfering with the boom, slowing it some what with permit games. The jobs that will be created without any effort on his part and in substantial numbers despite his games will be largely high wage blue collar related to oil drilling, refining, and transport. Consider that an instrument technician in an oil refinery requires about six months of vocational technical training and starts near $60,000 a year in compensation. Obama has already spoken about putting federal dollars into non degree vocational technical education for "today's jobs".  Carefully crafted Federal educational aid programs aimed at the longer term unemployed should propel many people who experienced months or even years of recent hard times into lucrative positions without the expense or time of pursuing a four year degree.  Indeed many a liberal arts graduate will seek out these opportunities.

  Since the boom will directly positively affect the non college educated working and lower middle class, Obama, if still in the White House will point to it as proof that "his plan" to build the economy "from the middle class out" worked. In fact the natural gas/ oil boom is coming regardless of who sits in the White House.  Neither man nor either political party had anything to do with creating it. Both parties are trying to ride it to a prolonged if not permanent position of political power.

The effects of this coming boom will include the re-positioning of the U.S. dollar as again the unchallenged global reserve currency.  The balance of payments will be resolved in America's favor, and America's number one credit rating restored. Tax revenues will increase not because the United States did or did not raise taxes on the "rich'.  The truth, is if the federal government confiscated all of the wealth of the top one percent, it would only make a tiny dent in the amount of the U.S. national debt. There will simply be more tax payers paying taxes on more income.  With the boom and its increased revenues to the U.S. Treasury, the debt will look less daunting. Given an electorate in which nearly 50% of the voters are actually willing to believe the President or party in power had anything to do with the coming new prosperity who ever is in the White House in 2016 has a free ride to re-election or election of the proxy of his choice. There in is the making of the first of the coming potential disasters that could ruin what should be about a fifty year run of prosperity and progress. 

 Running parallel and a bit behind the coming oil boom is a technological development that will end China's run as the number one manufacturing economy. Its called three "dimensional printing". You've seen the science fiction version for years on STAR TREK, the replicator. Well the early versions are out of the lab and into the market place already. Its being called Three Dimensional Printing. The operator loads in the specifications for the product and some canisters of powdered materials and the "printer begins" layering the desired object from the molecule level up ending with with a three dimensional working product.

 In short you are looking at the arrival of the STAR TREK replicator. I know you think that can't happen. If you are over fifty think about where you first saw the "flip phone", the "electronic book" ( now sold as Kindle and several competitive models). If you are under thirty you probably can't remember a time when these things weren't around. Well the "Replicator" AKA "Three Dimensional Printing" is out of the Lab and on the shop floor in a few places already. 

 The early models are expensive and the products they can make somewhat limited at the moment. But like all such technologies the performance will improve with time and costs will drop. In fact for a few small units the price has already dropped to a point where wealthy individuals may have some. It is widely reported that Jay Leno has one in his garage that can produce a number of working parts for vintage cars where sufficient specs exist for these parts no longer manufactured in the traditional sense. For the Chinese as well as for Americans this is earth shaking news., what else would you expect from Namazu the Earth Shaker? This technology conserves not only labor but material resources as well. Most manufacturing today is reductive. The process starts with a pile of steel , plastic, and other materials in whole sale lengths and shapes. The desired object is cut, milled, shaped and assembled out of this material pile and emerges in the functional form sold, leaving behind a slag pile of waste material. The Three Dimensional Printing Process starts at the molecular level and generates no waste using only exactly the amount of material needed.  That saving alone puts the conventional factory at a big disadvantage. 

To be contiunued

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