The Future of Current Events

Horror In Horoscope Land

Lately I have been looking at my horoscope to see if my ship is finally going to come in. Or, perhaps if and when it might sink before coming in sometime in the future. Speaking of the future, it occurred to me that maybe this horoscope thing isn’t all what it is cracked up to be. I know there are the 12 zodiac constellations and that the planets, sun and moon have a say in the matter too. But think of this; in about 250,000 years, the constellations as we know them now will be pretty much changed. The stars will be there but they will have changed positions. This is because of the expansion of the universe and that stars are moving away from us in all kinds of directions. Astronomers call it proper motion and it can be accurately measured. From our point of view, the earth, things will look very different in the night sky. It seems to me that the basis for Astrology will no longer exist since the zodiacal constellations will be much changed. Even the big dipper will be unrecognizable. The fact that scientists want to add a 13th constellation (Ophiuchus) to the mix, only complicates the matter. Journey to a far away planet revolving around a star many light years away, and your entire perspective will change anyway. The science of Astrology is created on shifting sands and therefore has no permanent relevance. The planets, sun and moon will have stayed very much the same. It is their houses that will be altered over time. Tarot cards anyone?

Technology To The Rescue; And It Isn’t Goog-oil

Then there is the supposed oil shortage and the constant rise of prices at the pump. Adjusted for inflation over the last 40 years, the highest price of a barrel of oil was in 1980 at $99. Today the price is around $75 a barrel. There is still enough oil to go around for quite awhile. What is in short supply is the refining capacity to make gasoline from each barrel of oil. No new refineries have been built in this country for over 30 years. Part of the problem has been that oil prices have remained to low for long periods. It takes billions of dollars and 8-10 years to build a decent sized refinery. Oil companies haven’t always made record profits like they have the last few years. And it takes many years to find, drill and bring new oil fields into production. It is likely over the next few decades there will be continued pressure on the price of energy. As China and India become populated with more and more vehicles, oil demand will continue to rise. In a way it is strange since the big three auto makers will be responsible for much of the rising demand. In their efforts to remain profitable companies, they are selling more and more to China, India, and South America. More vehicles equals increased oil demand. However there is hope that technological breakthroughs can once again save the day. There are in fact 100’s of billions of barrels of oil locked up in the tar sands in Canada as well as the oil shale deposits in Colorado. Not to mention an estimated trillion barrels under the ocean floor in places all around the globe. If technology can find an answer to unlock these treasures, these reserves could provide enough oil for several hundreds of years. Then as more supply comes to market, prices head down and oil company profits shrink. The public will be happy once again.

Can We Get A Lawyer For Poor Uncle Sam?

The federal government is indeed headed for chapter 13. It’s without a doubt going broke. Current estimates state that the government owes $66 trillion in future obligations. Almost twice the current asset base in this country. And about five times the current GDP (gross domestic product). The value placed on assets in this country is also very misleading. You can add up book values, share prices, real estate prices and all the rest of it and get a nice round figure. What happens when those assets have to be turned into real money? Ask investors about the rush to sell stocks in the early 2000’s. Or, look around at the real estate market today…prices are drifting lower. If there is a rush to sell while prices are still fairly high, the flood of properties on the market will force prices down dramatically. The clock is ticking on the government. Social security payouts to retired seniors as well as rocketing health care costs will shortly start to escalate unlike never before. Is the government prepared to make these payments? Only with future revenues that have not yet materialized. Possible solutions include raising taxes by 50%, cutting future entitlements by 2/3rds, or permanently cutting government spending by 150%. Anyway you slice it, economic stability of this country is in jeopardy. Not right away, but in the decades ahead. The politicians are likely to evade making the hard choices in the near future. But rest assured, some big shot lawyer somewhere is preparing to defend Uncle Sam in bankruptcy court. Provided of course he/she can get paid!

Oil And Auto Companies Go Out Of Business To Save The Earth

Lastly there is this global warming thing everybody is talking about. OK, the earth is warming up according to recent measurements over the last 100 years. So it is easy to blame oil and auto companies. Perhaps man is responsible for adding to the occurring temperature rise. It is difficult to come to a conclusion since there is so much conflicting information. Throwing a bunch of numbers into a computer model is all fine and dandy. But who wrote the programs? Maybe the earth is simply going through a cycle of some sort like it always does. Is there enough scientific evidence to say this is not a natural occurrence? Compare our knowledge about the human body, the brain, and how it all works to what we know about the earth. We are constantly making new discoveries in both areas. What was believed to be true yesterday is then refined as fresh data is added into the mix. If there were millions of years of concrete data to contrast with atmospheric events, more conclusive judgments could be made based on fact. About 70,000 years ago the latest ice age began. It lasted 60,000 years. Now perhaps this is just the next cycle beginning. Who really knows the type and ferocity of storms or atmospheric disturbances over the last 100 million years. Maybe 100 hurricanes a season is the norm over the last 10 million years. Two facts stand out: Hydrocarbons are in fact present on earth available to provide energy for human survival and advancement; and much of this global warming debate is political in nature. Next thing you know, Eskimos will be suing some government over melting igloos!

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