Saturday, February 4, 2012

A good week in America

Readers are pleading with me to give up on being blue and return to the optimistic color green. Hence this week’s blog is so positive that no electrons will fly. Coal mines are shutting in the US. We have so much excess coal as the winter has been warm and natural gas fired power generation is taking the place of coal fired units. Sad for coal miners and the railroads that ship coal but good for the lowering of carbon emissions and the reduction of acid gases and mercury emissions. More good news in that the Volt and the Leaf each managed a paltry sales in January of some 600 units and US consumers are now aware that it is far better to buy a Cruze or an Ultima than the plug in junk the department of entropy has handsomely funded. More good news is that Ener 1 went bust and only cost the US tax payer $118 million that Joe Biden handed them exactly a year ago.

The real good news is that employment went up and the unemployment rate went down. The stock market in the US is up significantly in the first month of 2012 and folks are talking about a soft landing in China. This is good news for the copper and nickel producers who have seen increases in the cost of these industrial metals. The world did not have a major oil spill in January and except for the Arab spring possibly becoming a nuclear winter only a small fraction of humanity managed to kill each other in January. Of course there were many more births than deaths and the global population again grew in January 2012. The GOP primaries and the almost daily debates moved from South Carolina to Florida and what a difference a week makes. Of course 15 million dollars of negative advertising also sways the voters.

Super Bowl is tomorrow and I have no skin in the game as I do not really care for two northeastern cities 3,000 miles away. The pig does have skin in the game and in fact the pig was so committed to American Football it gave up its life. I may just recline in my chair, eat some potato chips and dip and watch Madonna prove that 50 is the new 20. The field goal kicker knows that a fifty yarder is much harder than a twenty yarder and may explain this to Madonna in the three hour after game special that will analyze each blade of Fieldturf in the Indianapolis Lucas Oil Stadium. Fieldturf is made from polyethylene blend fibers woven into a polypropylene backing. Perhaps one of the super bowl ads will be sponsored by BP and will state that BP brings oil to American shores and plastics to football fields. Actually I love the ads and I am sure there will be some really clever and memorable ones this year. Lucas Oil is the new STP for your engine. STP to Engineers means Standard Temperature and Pressure. STP claims to make your engine run cleaner and more efficiently. Actually these engine additives do have some scientific merit and do keep engines running cleaner. Maybe Madonna takes some STP to keep her looking and moving like she is in her twenties. In her case I hope STP stands for Super Tantalizing Performance and not So Terrible and Pathetic.