Happy June, everyone. I hope life has been treating you well.
I haven’t been posting much recently for a few reasons. First, I simply don’t have that much to comment on right now. I make it into work and then go right home, and being on crutches means I’m not doing any outdoor work of any sort, so all of the updates I was planning for my garden and landscaping aren’t happening. I’ve had plenty of forced downtime to read, and I’ve been using it to start working through the stack of purchased yet unread history books that I’ve bought over the years. The short break from documenting everything that’s going wrong with the planet has been refreshing, for I’ve been reading and thinking about such things for most of the last year, and all that worrying makes Bart a dull boy. As I get more mobile again I expect that I’ll be posting more frequently again.
Another reason I haven’t been posting as much recently is that we’re going through a bit of a dry spell with regard to the news that I’ve been focusing on. Yes, there are things happening every day, but it’s mostly minor stuff:
- The price of gas has gone way up around here, and is now settling back down. As of Friday evening the local gas mart is selling unleaded for $3.01 per gallon, which seems downright reasonable compared to the $3.39 it was a few weeks back. I expect that we’ll slip back below three bucks for a while, but eventually we’ll be heading back into what’s now familiar territory.
- Today marks the official beginning of the 2007 hurricane season. There have already been a few storms in both the Atlantic and Pacific oceans this year, but things should really get going in the next few months, and as has been reported here and elsewhere, NOAA scientists are expecting this season to be a barn-burner.
- The geopolitical games in the Middle East and elsewhere continue. I personally find it relieving that the US is actually talking with the Iranians a bit, even if policy wonks around the world think it’s a sign of a weakening US power in the area. The situation in Iraq is still in limbo and probably will be for some time to come. Depending on who you believe, Iraq is either getting slightly better or slightly worse. As long as things don’t get drastically worse, I’ll take it.
- The US economy continues to function, which is all I really want from it right now. The new highs being reached in the stock market are moderated by inflation in food, energy and other markets, and talk of mass layoffs at places like IBM continues to lurk in the background.
- The most interesting story I’ve been following in recent weeks is the ongoing debate over just how much oil Saudi Arabia really has left in the ground over at the Oil Drum. If you haven’t been keeping up with the discussion, there’s been plenty of very detailed and technical articles posted from both points of view that have spawned a lot of interesting debate. If you have an interest in such things, it’s worth your time to spend a few hours of quality time reading the articles, digesting what is said in them, and going through the voluminous comments attached to all of them. In many cases, the comments are just as good as the stories themselves. I’m personally inclined to believe that the Saudis are doing what they can to disguise declines in their older, giant fields, but we won’t know for sure until there’s a crisis where Aramco can’t deliver.
That’s about all I’ve got for right now. While I continue to keep one eye on the future, I’m also trying to enjoy the present as much as I can. I hope you’re doing the same.