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Thread: Another View Of the International Scene

  1. #1
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    Another View Of the International Scene

    Believe it or not, there are things more important on the world scene than Robert Mueller’s kabuki dance, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortes’ brainlessness, Crooked Hillary’s corruption or even Donald Trump’s abrasive nature. It’s geopolitics. Invest 77 minutes and watch this. Yeah, it’s 77 minutes but it is a gold mine of relevant information.



    Draw your own conclusions, but here are my takeaways:

    1. The US will remain top dog for the foreseeable future. For a variety of reasons.
    2. The US is disengaging from the world order which was outlined by the Bretton Woods agreements.
    3. Most of the rest of the world is screwed and the US has a declining reason to care.

    Bretton Woods set up the most successful security alliance of all times. The US essentially bribed up a security alliance. The US lived with unbalanced trade in order to keep the Soviets penned in. As such, it worked spectacularly. It even absorbed the 1970s oil shocks. It had one big problem. It won. In 1989 the USSR went away and in 2015 shale oil blew the power of OPEC to bits. Now, the inequalities that the US tolerated to keep the alliance together became an impediment to the US.

    People in the US said: “Yay! We won! Now what’s in it for US?”
    Answer: Nothing.

    Today, if the world went to hell in a handbasket the US barely notices, so we are moving back to a more insular stance. NATO is obsolete. The UN is counterproductive. Most of our 2016 trade agreements were unfair to the US. All of these are being called into question.

    The guy is a “national security GOP moderate” and no fn of Trump, but if you watch the link you’ll see that he makes a good case. He examines things from a combined economic, political, geopolitical, and demographic standpoint and comes up with a fair optimistic view – for the US at least. For Europe, China and others, not so much.

    Bretton Wood described the world most of us have in most of our lives. The Arab oil thing reinforced that order. The USSR is gone and shale has blown the energy order to bits.The “New World Order” turned out to be just a corporatist rehash of Bretton Woods and there is just no valid reason for the US to maintain it.


    Invest 77 minutes and tell me I’m reading it wrong.
    Last edited by Taxcutter; 12-06-2018 at 10:33 AM.

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  3. #2
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    I didn't watch the video but I would say your re-cap is probably spot on. The US has enough problems right inside it's borders that the US doesn't need to take on the world's problems any longer.

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    I think you're wrong on the shale oil miracle. It has already proven to be unprofitable unless light crude price is above $100 bbl.
    A Mexican, a Jew and a colored guy walk into a bar. The bartender looks up and says, "Get the fuck outta here".

    - Clint Eastwood as Walt Kowalski in "Gran Torino".

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    What it is saying is that times change.

    The world of 1944 when Breton Woods was agreed on has been mainly gone for 29 years and the energy portion of it has been gone for four years.

    Time to bury Bretton Woods and high-priced oil.

    If you get a chance, watch it. The link has a ton of tasty information. He doesn't see much of a future for China or Europe.

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    Obviously, everybody is too fascinated by the Mueller sideshow.

    I view it important that Europe and the Persian Gulf are no longer particularly important to the US.

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    I care about America not the rest of the world. What have they done for us? Nothing ever!

    What do you call a basement full of Democrats?
    A Whine Cellar!


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    Quote Originally Posted by Ed D View Post
    I think you're wrong on the shale oil miracle. It has already proven to be unprofitable unless light crude price is above $100 bbl.

    Taxcutter says:
    That was true six or seven years ago. According to the American petroleum Institute, shale frackers are profitable at a $40/bbl price point. They are getting fat on $65 oil. API's estimate is tht shale fracking will be profitable at $25/bbl. I think the API knows a thing or two about the oil bidness.

    And this is just with the oil. Shale is gassy as hell. As America embrace natural gas for other uses, the price point of profitable shale drilling will move further down.

    And the US has not even touched most of the recoverable shale oil/gas yet. Even if natural gas captures 40% of transportation use, reserves estimate run into the hundreds of years.

    Here in the Midwest, frackers are experimenting with fracking and directional drilling to recovery more oil and gas from fields that have been "played out" since the days of John D. Rockefeller.

    Face it. The US really doesn't need Persian Gulf oil anymore. Who is gonna garrison the Gulf once the US realizes we don't need Saudi oil?

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    The Bretton Woods world is toast. Give them their due. It was a good system while it was relevant. No period of history has such a large chunk of the world gotten so wealthy and remained essentilly at peace for so long. But now all the foundations of that world have dissolved.

    The US has no further incentive to guarantee free access to our markets or freedom of the seas over every drop of salt water in the world. At least without a new (and attractive to the US) quid pro quo.

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    Consider this: Say in a few years the US decides it is no longer interested in garrisoning the Persian Gulf and goes home (probably maintaining a presence somewhere to support Israel). Who guarantees the oil will flow? Today, Saudi Arabia and Iran are in a proxy war for control of the region. Today it is a proxy war because both sides (logically enough) are scared to death of what the US force could do to them.

    But if the US goes home...

    Nature and politics abhor a vacuum. China and Russia have been tacitly backing the Iranians. Saudi Arabia will be desperately hunting allies. Their Sunni Moslem brothers are militarily useless and with the price of oil down it will be hard to bribe them into action. Europe cannot even protect their own borders against malevolent hoboes. My bet would be a Japanese/Indian coalition. The Japanese have the world's second biggest navy but most of it as to stay in home waters to keep an eye on the Chinese. India has a big population, a strong military tradition, and is trying to grow a navy but the Indians have a huge corruption problem.

    The Straits of Hormuz are a long pull from China or Japan. India has a few nukes. Japan has none we know of but they have had nuclear reactors going in their country for decades and all those spent fuel rods have lots of plutonium that could be processed. It's 1940s tech. Any question the Japanese can gin up some nukes in relatively short order? India has good geographic position to stop or interdict Chinese intervention in the Gulf. China's "Silk Road" through the 'Stans would be a slender lifeline for an army.

    Russia won't give Iran much help beyond cheerleading. They have to go to war in Europe in the next ten years (their demographic window is closing) or will have to live with a longer, less defensible border than the US has on its southern border. At least the US southern border is mostly mountains and desert. the Russians western border is 1,500 miles of the north European plain - perfect tank country. Ask the Germans. With Europe effectively demilitarized the Russians could shorten their border by attacking Ukraine Moldavia, Romania, Slovakia, the Baltic States, Poland and maybe Finland. Even if the US were inclined to risk nuclear war over those countries, we could not move and supply a big army in that area unless Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium and Turkey play ball. The strip of lnd involved is almost landlocked and the US is primarily a maritime power. Germany, Holland, and Belgium don't want to get the snot bombed out of them over Poles and Lithuanians. Hell, the Germans might do like in 1763 and 1939 and divvy up Poland amongst themselves.

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    As the Bretton woods world evaporates, the Germans are screwed. The EU and Eurozone are dissolving. German is an export-driven economy and half their exports are to Eurozone trading partners. without the Euro, german stuff will be priced out of much of Europe. The deutschmark will be super-strong against the lira and drachma and peso. The results in Germany and southern Europe will make 1931 meric look like boom times.

    Further, the German are like the Russians. Most of their border are hard to defend. That pesky North European Plain again.They'll have to re-arm, big time. So flat it make Kansas look like Colorado by comparison. Perfect tnk country. Ask Marshal Zhukov. Further, the Germans are going to have to have a death match with their population of malevolent hoboes to determine who is in charge. German technical prowess is long proven. They could have nukes in four of five years if they go whole-hog to re-arm. Something for Putin to think about.

    The world is changing while you guys obsess over Mueller.

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