Monday, December 21, 2009
DECEMBER 21, 2009
Today is the shortest day of the year in the northern hemisphere, also known as the Winter Solstice. Winter officially has begun, although snowfall records were already broken in DC on December 19. In Hawaii, it is sunny and 80 degrees F.
On November 23 I made several predictions. The top three were:
1. On Global Climate Change: President Barack Obama will find a convincing excuse for not again going to Copenhagen (one Chicago Olympics embarrassment is enough) next month and will send in his place Michelle and Al (Gore). Of course, there will be no congressional legislation passed this year, and, maybe not next, too, unless tens of millions perish in the summer of 2010.
2. On Peak Oil: crude petroleum prices will remain under $100/barrel. (I need to pad my stats.)
3. About the Health Plan: The Senate will find a way to drag this on until December 21 or so and, somehow, find a way to call for a final up or down vote, where VP Joe Biden will cast the 51st vote to pass it. Through this means, ten deserving Democrats will be allowed to vote "no" to help them get re-elected next year. The conference committee will thus bestow a Christmas present to President Barack Obama.
Well, President Obama did go to Copenhagen, but the gathering was an "abject failure." He should have listened to me. Peak oil seems now settled below $75/barrel. As predicted, the U.S. Senate did vote today to move on the health plan. They will now officially approve the bill on Christmas Eve, work with the House in conference during the holiday period, then vote in January for the President's signature to soon follow. Thus far, the insurers and lobbyists have won. But, will there yet be a way found to re-insert the public option in conference, and orchestrate an up or down final vote (bypassing cloture)? This would allow ten Democrats/Independents to vote no and Vice President Biden to cast the winning vote.
Well, two+ out of three...not bad at all. Tomorrow, probably, the final segment of SETI.
The Dow Jones Industrials rose 85 to 10,414, while world markets mostly were up. The Japan Nikkei is at 10,183. Gold fell $20/toz to $1093 and oil settled at $73/barrel.
Tropical Cyclone Laurence ripped into the Australian Kimberley/Pilbara coast as a Category 3 storm.