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The Jamocratic joke

Yup a wordplay and it is not the only one I have, but it is one of the less ‘hurtful’ ones. In the first, I have a republican mindset, I have always had that. I oppose Trump in all its glorified stupidity. I believe the US lost a great man with the passing of John McCain and I think the republicans wrongfully stabbed Liz Cheney in the back on the words of a bully, but we will have a reckoning on that later. Today we start with SkyNews who gave us ‘‘Morally bankrupt’: Biden ‘humiliated’ by Saudi Arabia and oil companies’ (at https://www.skynews.com.au/world-news/united-states/morally-bankrupt-biden-humilitaed-by-saudi-arabia-and-oil-companies/video/5819a070a892b5de3db7a8f259bff9c6), now granted the news is 2 days old. I wanted a little time to mull things over, but the text as given by “The president said it’s “unacceptable” that oil companies are making record profits during “a time of war.”” Oh? America is in a war? Who are they in war with? With their ‘proud boys’, with their failures? The list goes on and it is not a nice list. They gave the power to Wall Street and Wall Street ants ledgers, not excuses. 

And we were given a list of the oil companies

Marathon Petroleum, Valero Energy, ExxonMobil, Phillips 66, Chevron, BP, and Shell.

Marathon made $69B in 2020, that was their operating income, Their Net profit was $9.9B in 2020. Valero might have had a larger revenue $117B (2018), but a much lower Net profit which was a mere $4B (2018), Exxon mobile was the bigger player with $276B (2021), yet only with a Net income of $23B (2021), less than 10%. Are they corporations? Yes they are! They own responsibility to their shareholders and 10% does not add up to much and the statement of “record profits” does not add up, well not completely. You see Biden was handed a bad hand and the Russians gave that to him, so to see him blame American companies is one failure, to nag and bitch to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia after he vowed to make them a pariah on something lacking clear evidence is a second failure. None of these players owe him, or the American people anything. This is the setting of a commodity driven economy. Consider the list. The US is one of the top three oil producing nations, so why is all that oil squandered? Why did the presidents (all of them, Republicans as well) not halt the consumption of oil? Why was something not done 20 years ago? I have articles spanning back decades on this folly. In 2015 Americans told me to shut up (fair enough), but now they do not get to scream! 

They can have ice cream (to soften the blow) but not whinge and whine. 

You see the problem is so much larger, and the US is part of that problem, it was never part of that solution. In 1999 crude oil was at an almost all time low of $19.35 a barrel. The cost was so low that oil providers started to shut down, the only time is was lower was in July 1946. Oil has had a rollercoaster life with tops in 2008 ($187) and April 1980 ($142), so as it is now at around $114 I would say “You ain’t seen nothing yet”, oh and before I forget what wars were the US in in 2008, or 1980? 

No, as I see it when you decide to hand the reigns to Wall Street, you cannot ‘yap’ like the little chihuahua. A commodity driven economy does not care, it does not care that your granny is sick, that the dog ate your homework, or that the mistress will not have sex with you as you only bought her a Microlino instead of a Dodge Challenger. All parts a commodity driven economy cares nothing about.

And Saudi Arabia? They need to do what is best for their country, not what matters to their greed driven customers. Does it hurt me? Yes it does, but that is the world I live in. I do not control oil, I do not control wealth, as such I am its plaything just like anyone else. As such SkyNews has a point with “US President Joe Biden has been criticised as “morally bankrupt” and “weak” in regard to his energy policy after it was revealed he is planning to visit Saudi Arabia to discuss the global oil crisis.” Yes, it is one way to look, but if he cannot control the American people who are eager to dig a deeper grave by the day (they are almost deep enough to say ‘Nǐ hǎo’ to the Chinese people) and no one in the US is stopping the need for oil, higher prices is where it will be. A simple setting of Supply and Demand.

It is getting worse, less than 3 hours ago we were informed (by Reuters) “Egypt and Saudi Arabia have signed 14 agreements valued at $7.7 billion during a visit to Cairo by Saudi Arabia’s de facto ruler Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman” in addition there is “the establishment of a $150 million “pharmaceutical city” by Egypt’s Pharco Pharmaceuticals in Saudi Arabia” That is the true benefit of being a true ally to Saudi Arabia, a setting now starts that will cost the American coffers billions, just as I predicted will happen in 2016, 2018, 2020 and now we see the first (or second) impact in 2022. The US pharmaceutical branch in Saudi Arabia will lose power, Egypt will rise. Egypt will offer services to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for billions, those billions are lost to the US and the EU. This is the impact of a failed policy that never had any strength to begin with. 

So in all this, the administrations of the US (not President Biden) failed its citizens. The administration set the paper tiger in motion that looks nice, but when the people around it know that this tiger is paper (unlike the one below)

There will be a lack of reaction, a lack of adherence and that is when we realise there was never any need to adhere to anything. So the American people pissed off the KSA and Elon Musk (both energy saviours). So how exactly was that letter anything but a bad idea even before it was written? I see it was a desperate act of an administration that saw its fuel policy go to $5.87 (from $2.17) a rise of well over 100%. We get the desperation of the letter, but the expectation of success is equally laughable. As such what is the letter anything else but an admission that bankruptcy is merely just around the corner? When this all comes to blow the larger setting will come into play and there Wall Street will get to learn the lesson that absolute greed has merely one direction and it is not a good one, but those in Wall Street will have packed up their 8 or 9 figure balance and they will have headed for a zero tax shelter with warm sands and warm beaches. The rest? Well good luck to them. Oh and do not forget winter (and the need for heating fuel) is a mere 17 weeks away now. 

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The part we seem to forget

I was reading an article on the Guardian when something hit me. You see, we have been told parts of this again and again since the 90’s, for 30 years, more likely than not even longer, were we warned for the issues we now see unfold in Greece and all over the world. 

When we consider that and we consider ‘Major climate changes inevitable and irreversible – IPCC’s starkest warning yet’ (at https://www.theguardian.com/science/2021/aug/09/humans-have-caused-unprecedented-and-irreversible-change-to-climate-scientists-warn) we see “Human activity is changing the Earth’s climate in ways “unprecedented” in thousands or hundreds of thousands of years, with some of the changes now inevitable and “irreversible”, climate scientists have warned. Within the next two decades, temperatures are likely to rise by more than 1.5C above pre-industrial levels, breaching the ambition of the 2015 Paris climate agreement, and bringing widespread devastation and extreme weather.” Yet what we do not see, not by any media, is the job the media is supposed to do, the part we expect and the part we should DEMAND they will do, but they will not. The media is the bitch of shareholders, stakeholders and advertisers and their stakeholders will not hear of it, their friends will not like this. We should demand a list, a list of EVERY scientist who opposed the papers showing these dangers for decades. We should demand a list of these scientists and the corporate links they had, the corporate donations they received. The people are entitled to them, but the stakeholders who are behind the screens will not like this and I wonder why not. Actually, I am not that surprised that stakeholders tend to be bitches too, they will have friends they cater too and they do not like it that they are not the powers they pretend to be, but the game is now in a stage where we should look at that part, even as the media is willing to let that part go, just like they play footsie with people like Martin Bashir. So as the Daily Mail gives the people ‘Diana whistleblower who sounded the alarm over ‘dirty tricks’ used by Martin Bashir to secure interview ‘will be paid £750,000 by BBC after losing career’’ we see that the BBC catered to other needs for 25 years and they do not like the limelight of catering, just like others catered to Jimmy Saville and a few others, all (as I personally see it) due to connections to stakeholders, that needs to end. I believe that any media shown to cater to non-media needs, need to get its 0% VAT status revoked for no less than 10 years, see if that motivates them. 

The Guardian gave us (at https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2021/jun/30/climate-crimes-oil-and-gas-environment) “Instead of heeding the evidence of the research they were funding, major oil firms worked together to bury the findings and manufacture a counter narrative to undermine the growing scientific consensus around climate science. The fossil fuel industry’s campaign to create uncertainty paid off for decades by muddying public understanding of the growing dangers from global heating and stalling political action.” This is fine, but this was not enough, the scientists who put their name under some of these marketing plays need to be out in the open, they made their choices, the now need to be banned for life. Catering to stakeholders need to come at a price. It is nice to blame the fossil fuel group, it might not be wrong, but it is shallow, there was an entire support engine of academics and politicians, they need to be pushed into the limelight. Politicians that set the agenda of inaction, supported by academic statements, we need those to be out in the open in all nations, so that we can flush out. The stakeholders, a side the media is for the most unable (read: unwilling) to do. So as the Guardian also gives us “Last month, a Dutch court ordered Shell to cut its global carbon emissions by 45% by the end of the decade. The same day, in Houston, an activist hedge fund forced three new directors on to the board of the US’s largest oil firm, ExxonMobil, to address climate issues. Investors at Chevron also voted to cut emissions from the petroleum products it sells.” So, where were they in the last 2-3 decades? As I personally see it, these people could react well over a decade ago when the water was up to our necks, they decided to fill their pockets a little longer until the water was up to our eyeballs, optionally making reference that clever people had a snorkel. Yet, snorkels have weaknesses, and the eyeballs might see the waves from one direction, not from all directions in that state, for that the water needed to be at no more than neck level, less would have ben better. 

So as we are in this setting, we are all driven to blame fossil fuel and as most oil comes from the middle east it will be appealing to most, yet the truth, the ugly truth is that they could only preserve their income with political and academic support form the west and we want those names, preferable with the names of the stakeholders. 

I wonder if any media will dig into that part, they might say that they do and they might make efforts, but after 2-3 weeks there will be another crises and some stakeholder will drown the effort, that is how the world runs, greed driven against the needs of everyone and at the cost of everything that is not theirs. It is merely my point of view, but I believe it to be a correct one.

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The Tesla orator

The issue has been out for a little while, yet up to now it didn’t really interest me. Cars come and go, some cars have flaws, and others have merely a dent in its design. There are consumer laws and there are legal paths for those buying the wrong product, or better stated a flawed article. Like below, the T7 transporter, a space ship costing 17 million, its manoeuvrability is so bad that an opponent flying something at the cost of 5% of this ship can destroy it without too much hassle.

Worst buy ever (at 17,472,252 credits)

 

So why a game reference?

Does it matter what you bought, what it was for or why you bought it in the first place? Cars are like video games to most people; their marketing is about look, about sensation, about satisfaction and about joy. When was the last time that a car was actually marketed or sold to you with only a focus to get you from point A to point B?

So when I saw the article (at https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2018/jun/21/tesla-whistleblower-sabotage-elon-musk-gigafactory-martin-tripp), with the title ‘Tesla whistleblower claims company is ‘doing everything it can to silence me’‘, I started to wonder what this was actually about. The subtitle gives us “The electric carmaker is suing a former technician for alleged hacking, but he says he’s being scapegoated for leaking concerns“.

So the two parties, is this one side about ‘leaking concerns (whistleblowing)‘ or is this about ‘alleged hacking (industrial espionage)‘. As the Guardian treats us to “By the end of the day, he had been sued by his former employer for alleged hacking and theft, engaged in a hostile email exchange with Elon Musk, come out as a whistleblower, and was being patted down by sheriff’s deputies over allegations that he was threatening to go to his former workplace and “shoot the place up”“, we need to wonder what this is actually about. You see, from my point of view, if there are concerns you take them up with the ‘right’ parties. Those who know me know that I did just that, straight to the CEO and I was not nice about it. I had customers to protect, I had their data to protect and I did just that. The real deal is not now, or was ever the issue to anyone outside the company. That is what a caring employee does. A caring employee does his job to the best ability and to the degree where he sets the proper stage to be able to do this. We see allegations left right and centre and when we see ““I’m a scapegoat because I provided information that is absolutely true,” Tripp told the Guardian on Wednesday evening. “This is obscene … It feels like I have no rights as a whistleblower.”” This is where we get the questions that matters:

  1. I provided information that is absolutely true‘ yet, who was this information provided to?
  2. I have no rights as a whistleblower‘, might be right or wrong depending on who you provided the information to.

At times the equation can be that simple. The Washington Post gives us “But Tripp, who says he became a whistleblower after seeing what he called dangerous conditions in the company’s car batteries, told The Washington Post“, gives less valid light to Martin Tripp, depending on the path he took. Any company has its own path to take. Are their emails that Martin Tripp took to the bosses, to his boss, to the legal department of the firm and to the QA division? Even if it was the subtle “Are you out of your effing mind to put such a battery in a car?” Did Martin do any of that?

In opposition the Washington Post gives “The showdown has exposed deep rancor at a tech giant famous for its head-turning cars, high-pressure workloads — and Musk, its unyielding boss. It also marks a new depth of suspicions from Musk, who recently sent companywide emails urging workers to stay vigilant against shadowy “outside forces,” saying, “Only the paranoid survive.”” (at https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-switch/wp/2018/06/21/saboteur-or-whistleblower-battle-between-elon-musk-and-former-tesla-employee-turns-ugly-exposing-internal-rancor), You see, we might be triggered by ‘high-pressure workloads‘, or ‘stay vigilant against shadowy “outside forces,”‘ in this we need to accept to some degree and realise that all the other brands are petrochemical driven, so any Tesla success will hurt them all. The Dow Jones Index is set by 30 companies, they include Chevron and Exxon, as well as a few financial institutions doing business with those two and as such a success on one site, is in the long term implies diminishment on the other side, so being paranoid is not the worst mindset to have, yet in all this, an unreceptive CEO (or should that be: unperceptive) is never a good thing. In all this it becomes a slight issue that neither side is bringing home the bacon on actual safety concerns or documented interaction other than the emotional one in the Washington Post. The other part we see is “He said he and his family have temporarily vacated their home after their address was posted online.” The question becomes, which person thought that doing that was a good idea ever? The Washington Post does give a link to the Business Insider (which had issues for me). It does give something else, which does not bode well for Martin Tripp. When we see: “Tripp said he tampered with no systems and shared information with the media only after seeing things that alarmed him within the company, including what he says were dangerously punctured batteries used in Tesla’s latest Model 3 sedans“. Here my question becomes, why the Media? Why not openly give this to the authorities? You see, a claim like ‘dangerously punctured batteries used in Tesla’s latest Model 3 sedans‘ implies that there is optionally a federal crime at the very least as production is national, in addition to allegedly endangering lives. So why not go to the FBI? Perhaps that was done, but the articles do not seem to give light to that part.

Yet another Business Insider article (at https://www.businessinsider.com.au/tesla-model-3-production-in-2018-so-far-2018-6), gives us:

  • Tesla has completed about 30,000 of its Model 3 sedans in 2018, according to internal documents viewed by Business Insider and two Tesla employees.
  • The company is trying to ramp up its output of the car to 5,000 a week, but that effort has been beset by challenges.
  • Tesla has made about 6,000 Model 3 cars in June, so far, according to a person familiar with the matter.

There are clearly issues with production, yet is it about managing expectations? Keeping the hype up and adjusting delivery times? Is there a resource issue, which we see with “CEO Elon Musk has called it a “production hell” on more than one occasion! The effort has been beset by bottlenecks, and the company has gone as far as flying equipment from Germany to speed up the process“. There was a news article last week on a battery catching fire, yet this is merely one instance, one instance on thousands of cars made. It does not give light to anything serious, not when it is merely one. This whilst in opposition there are more and more articles given claims that do matter, you see the element is not the car, it is about something entirely different. We see that when we consider the following: “cobalt has been a key ingredient in building high-energy-density lithium-ion batteries, like those used in electric vehicles. In some batteries chemistry, cobalt makes up as much as a third of the chemistry in a lithium-ion battery. Around half of the world’s cobalt production goes into rechargeable batteries, and concerns about supply constraints and the environmental and human impacts of cobalt mining have made it a controversial component of electric vehicles“, then we get “But Tesla CEO Elon Musk dropped a bombshell on the industry earlier this spring when he revealed that the battery cells in the Model 3 use less than 3% cobalt, a fraction of the amount that other state-of-the-art battery chemistries are using” (source: thestreet.com). The issue is not merely the battery; it is the Cobalt in the equation. If that is true in any way shape or form than Tesla is sitting on the hottest tech in decades. Well over 30% of our daily need is dependent on batteries. Your smartphone, your iPad, iPod, torches, compact camera, movie camera’s, Car batteries in general, batteries for motor cycles, so when we see that Cobalt is $42 a pound, and there has been reported lack of supplies, the one solving that problem is sitting on hundreds of billions of IP, and now Martin Tripp does not look so holy, he does not seem to be this concerned citizen. It is like someone publishing the recipe of Coca Cola. Once it is out, it is gone to public domain and in that Elon Musk is very correct to go ‘slightly’ overboard. People have been assassinated for a hell of a lot less.

Yet in opposition of this, we do see from Ars Technica: “I then had to provide numbers to a group of engineers/production every morning and asked several times if anything was being done to rectify the issues. [I] even [had] a few meetings with my HR rep and brought the issues up.” At that point, he began leaking to the press, specifically to Business Insider, which wrote a June 4, 2018 story entitled: “Internal documents reveal Tesla is blowing through an insane amount of raw material and cash to make Model 3s, and production is still a nightmare”“. It is clear that errors were made in action and reaction on both sides, yet, for Martin Tripp the issues should have stopped to some degree after he went to HR, and even if it makes for good ‘publicity’ from a media point of view to report ‘production is still a nightmare‘, as well as ‘Tesla is blowing through an insane amount of raw material and cash‘, they are issues that fall well above the pay grade of a technician, especially whilst we see clarity that this entire matter is being evolved to more and larger plants. A company in motion, no one denied that. Even as we see that there are production issues, they are not for us to opt on (unless we want to sell Elon Musk a solution). In all that I see, I see two parts. The first is that Martin Tripp is not and should not receive whistle blower protection. The second is that if the given presentations are true, Elon Musk is not merely sitting on some electrical car, he is sitting on an optional battery solution that might be the biggest desire for every mobile implementer around the globe. You only need to talk to half a dozen camera men working around the globe for news organisations to realise that their lives revolve around a better battery. Elon Musk might be in a stage where he is on top of a new IP. Sony had the same option in the early 90’s and with their battery (which was loads better than anyone else had) they conquered several battery dependent markets overnight. In a little over 25 years that dependency has only grown and it implies that the better battery can own the market share of whatever opposes it.

So as we saw that the confirmation was for the current batteries to have less than 3% (it was tested to contain only 2.8% cobalt), the claim “Musk recently doubled down, saying on Twitter that Tesla’s next-generation battery will use none of the element” would have an astronomical impact. In this the science is twofold. if less cobalt is an option, yet costs size (not an issue for cars) we see the first, now consider the second setting that with cobalt, the battery is even smaller and more powerful, this in equal measure counts, because when you consider the current players (iPhone 7, Samsung Galaxy 9, Google Pixel 2 XL and Huawei P20), when one of them has that solution now offering the same phone with 5200 MAh, which one would you buy? All same sized, yet one has a battery span 40% longer? What would you do?

Consider the last time you needed a power bank or you were low on battery power, now consider some dumb individual makes that IP public knowledge and that was by right your property, what would you do?

I see no evidence that Martin Tripp is on some holy crusade. Him going to the Business Insider and not to the FBI, NY Times, LA Times or Washington Post gives me that conviction.

Feel free to disagree; this is merely my point of view on the matter.

Have a great weekend (to recharge your own internal battery) everyone!

 

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