Seeking Alpha

Michael Fitzsimmons

View as an RSS Feed
View Michael Fitzsimmons' Comments BY TICKER:
Latest comments  |  Highest rated
  • Why Natural Gas Vehicles Won't Decrease Oil Dependence, Part I [View article]
    How can you justify such a title when simple math shows running half the American car and truck fleet on natural gas would *reduce* oil consumption by around 6 million barrels a day? Let me recommend a better (yet long-winded) title which is much more accurate:

    "Natural gas vehicles won't decrease oil consumption because American policymakers prevent NGVs, natural gas refueling stations, and the "Phill" home garage nat gas refueling appliance from being available to the American public."

    There, that's about right.

    Meanwhile, in 2009, the US:
    - Imported 4.35 billion barrels of oil
    - which was 63% of total oil consumption
    - for which we sent $265 Billion overseas

    Apparently, the "policymakers" "solution" to this moronic US energy crisis is to print more fiat money in an wrong-headed attempt to address a commodity problem (oil) with financial tom-foolery. It simply won't work in the future (and isn't working now). America's dependence on foreign oil is its #1 economic problem from which all others emanate. Instead of addressing the root problem by switching transportation to American produced natural gas and thereby:
    1) keeping hundreds of billions (and in the future trillions..) of dollars at home
    2) creating millions of good paying jobs in the auto, energy, and infrastructure sectors
    3) paying royalties to landowners and farmers instead of foreign oil producers (many whom don't like us too much)
    4) removing the need to fight oil wars
    5) prevent funding both sides of the "war on terror"

    Oh, and just for a kicker, we reduce CO2 emissions 30% and particulate emissions by 100% (over gasoline powered cars and trucks). Yeah boy, that's alot of "rhetoric". But your charts are very fancy, i'll give ya that.

    Here is the real solution - a long-term, comprehensive, strategic energy policy:

    And I repeat: Energy Secretary Chu should resign or be fired. Any energy secretary who believes in the oxymoron of "clean coal" and is agnostic about America's cheapest, cleanest, and most abundant source of energy (natural gas) has obviously risen to the level of incompetence.
    Feb 7 11:21 AM | 63 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • U.S. Energy Policy Is Responsible for Unrest in Egypt [View article]
    "peak oil" or "peak production" is not really the issue here. the issue is can worldwide oil production keep pace with worldwide oil demand. that is the issue. and it doesn't matter if oil goes to $150 again, or $500. it is a problem now at $90...or $80...or $70.


    it is draining the wealth of our country, currently at the rate of about $1 billion dollars a day. why is that so hard for folks to understand? you would think $148/barrel oil and $4.50/gallon gasoline and a huge recession would have been a wake up call. but nope, not in the U.S.A. we are just stubborn, we want to drive our SUVs!
    Jan 29 09:55 PM | 59 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • U.S. Energy Policy Is Responsible for Unrest in Egypt [View article]
    You simply cannot convince me that the idiotic ethanol mandates are not raising the price of corn and causing dislocations across the entire food sector.
    Jan 29 04:51 PM | 52 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why American Oil Companies Passed on Shale Gas [View article]
    In COP's case, the company already has spent alot of money acquiring natural gas assets (Burlington Resources and Origin for example) and already has huge natural gas reserves in Alaska. As a COP shareholder, I am glad they didn't invest more money in shale gas assets, especially considering the price of natural gas and the huge supply which is now available at the flick of a switch. But the main reason I am glad COP will be focusing more on oil is that the price of oil is going to continue to skyrocket while the price of natural gas will be somewhat capped. The reason? Because, despite $145/barrel oil, and despite China's increasing oil consumption, and despite the very negative effects of America's foreign oil addiction - the U.S. Congress, Obama, Energy Secretary Chu, and Carol Browner still don't get it: the only domestic fuel which can signficantly reduce foreign oil imports is *natural gas*, particularly in the transportation sector. That is, the U.S. should adopt natural gas transportation as a basic and central tenant of any energy policy. Since U.S. "policymakers" continue to ignore the economic, environmental, and national security benefits of adopting natural gas transportation, the sky is the limit on oil prices. At the same time, domestic natural gas prices will continue to stay under pressure due to over-hanging shale gas supply. As I have written before, the historical oil to natural gas price ratio has been forever changed. Natural gas is abundant and cheap while the easy (i.e. cheap) oil has been produced and "cheap" oil production is in rapid decline. Here's an energy policy to address this basic, fundamental, and inconvenient truth:
    As Boone Pickens has said, the U.S. will go down as the most ignorant nation in history for refusing to adopt its abundant, clean, and cheap domestic energy resource in favor of staying addicted to foreign oil, fighting foreign wars, and funding both side of "the war on terror." It's a helluva way to run a country isn't it? Anybody thinking there would be some "change" with Obama has now realized there is absolutely no difference between Republican and Democratic leadership on the most serious American problem: foreign oil addiction.
    Jul 22 10:38 AM | 43 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Has CNBC Lost Its Mojo? [View article]
    you could replace joe kernen with a sign that says:

    1) Bush and the Republicans are awesome!
    2) No one should pay any taxes at all.
    3) No large company can do anything wrong
    4) All democrats are evil.
    5) Global warming is a myth and foreign oil addiction is awesome.

    Then we wouldn't have to hear it day-after-day, month-after-month, year-after-year...yawn.
    Aug 8 09:56 AM | 36 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Natural Gas Vehicles Won't Decrease Oil Dependence, Part I [View article]
    freya: speaking of ranting, i noticed you didn't offer any solutions in your post (other than to bash me) to reduce foreign oil imports. you pin all your hopes on electric cars which have range issues, rely on dirty and expensive coal to recharge, and will simply move american's addiction to foreign oil to addiction to huge battery packs. meanwhile, the policies you espouse are enriching israel's arab neighbors beyond belief while forcing the US to print more fiat money to fund the oil wars to ensure future design. nice solutions freya!! so yeah, i "rant" about natural gas transportation to counteract some of the lunacy out there. since our policymakers seem to agree with your wrong-headed "solutions", the US continues to go down the tubes...
    Feb 8 08:49 AM | 33 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Don't Believe Long-Term Oil Forecasts [View article]
    i tend to agree with you and site several reasons why:

    1) even at oil prices of $145/barrel, production of the largest oil companies was down year-over-year

    2) the US continues to spend huge sums of money to obtain oil: witness the war in iraq and afghanistan (which is not about the taliban, but about getting caspian sea energy treasures to market without going through russia or iran).

    3) the chinese are now selling more cars (the vast majority of them gasoline powered) every month than america.

    4) the U.S. has still not adopted a non-gasoline personal transportation solution (like natural gas vehicles) and therefore is still addicted to foreign oil despite all the rhetoric from the obama administration. it is clear obama and energy secretary chu are held firmly in the grasp of oil and coal power as they are "agnostic" about natural gas transportation even as supply has mushroomed and prices have dropped.

    so, the U.S., and the world for that matter, continue on a collision course with the reality of worldwide oil supply/demand. if the economy does come back from the last prices spike (not a given), the current "glut" of oil supplies will be worked off in a matter of months and the next price spike will exceed the last one. the world is on an economic yo-yo driven by the new world reserve currency: oil. the U.S. is the biggest user by far (~25% of total), oil is priced in US dollars, but the U.S. is in deep debt and after 8 years of Bush China owns *alot* of it. so, you tell me, who is in the catbird seat going forward?
    Nov 8 11:59 AM | 28 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Natural Gas Vehicles Won't Decrease Oil Dependence, Part I [View article]
    mark bern: the US has enough natural gas to supply all home heating, all industrial, replace ALL coal plants with nat gas generation, and to fuel half the cars and trucks in the US, ALL for the next 100 years. if anything, this estimate is too low. to use the excuse that we don't have enough natural gas to stay addicted to a fuel that is going to have much more trouble keeping up with demand (oil) is foolish. to use it as an excuse to keep spewing toxic particulates into our air and water (via coal) is as well. natural gas is abundant the world over. it's clean and it's cheap. don't fall victim to the interests who dominate policy and want to keep you addicted to dirty and more expensive fuels. think for yourself and throw off the shackles of dirty solid and liquid 20th century fuels and imagine a 21st century of prosperity based on clean, cheap, and abundant gaseous fuels (nat gas, wind, hydrogen, solar).
    Feb 7 11:42 AM | 26 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Don't Believe Long-Term Oil Forecasts [View article]
    oops, i forgot to add the biggest reason why i would agree with you, and why many others must agree with you: a $77/barrel oil price today even as:

    1) demand in the US has fallen 6-7%
    2) brimming worldwide oil supplies
    3) the worst economic contraction since the great depression

    so, if prices are $77/barrel now, where are they going if the worldwide economy picks up over the next year? where will the go if the US dollar continues downward? and lastly, where will they go if the US decides to start the 3rd war in the middle east (iran)? the outlook for oil has never been more bullish than it is today.
    Nov 8 12:13 PM | 26 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • U.S. Energy Policy Is Responsible for Unrest in Egypt [View article]
    obama, like bush, is a complete no-op when it comes crafting the strategic, long-term, comprehensive energy policy that we need. obama is all for the myth and oxymoron of "clean coal". he is all for the electric car. and he continues to support the oil wars in the middle east as well as the deficit spending to "fund" them. for all the rhetoric about how much obama is different than bush, on the important stuff regarding energy policy, i see little difference at all and it has been a huge disappointment.
    Jan 30 08:22 AM | 24 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Now's the Time to Own Exxon [View article]
    It is true that XOM is a strong buy at these levels - great balance sheet, great margins, and of course the lack of a strategic long-term and comprehensive energy policy in the U.S. means oil prices are going much much higher from here. If XOM's management ever becomes shareholder friendly again and pays out a real dividend instead of inflating their salaries, performing stock buybacks, and diluting shareholder value with things like the XTO buyout, the stock may well move again like the old days. Meanwhile, those holding XOM today will continue to receive the lowest dividend payment in the peer group (other than BP, which went from 6% to 0% due to the oil spill). Shareholders should let XOM management know their displeasure at such a paltry dividend compared to its peers.
    Jul 27 09:23 AM | 22 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • In victory for oil industry, EPA proposes lower renewable fuel quotas [View news story]
    About time!! The should abolish the entire program. The ethanol mandates are just one more example of ludicrous US energy "policy"..right up there with "clean coal", biofuels, etc. etc.
    Nov 15 03:29 PM | 21 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Clean Energy Boosted By U.S. Natural Gas Refueling Station Plans [View article]
    Ron, please, the 4 year reign of Obama & Energy Secretary Chu ("Mr. Agonostic) has seen some of the worst energy policy in the history of the US. They expanded the failed Bush ethanol mandates, wasted billions on "clean coal", wasted more billions on battery reseach ending in bankrupted companies, ditto for Solyndra, and then of course there are the massive subsidies for "private" EV manufacturers. Don't look toward Washington - it is under complete SuperPAC control when it comes to energy "policy".

    Meantime, I will gladly accept Chinese assistance in getting the US to do what is so obvious to every energy policy maker in the rest of the world: adopting natural gas transportation. After all, Chinese energy policy is crafted by engineers, where as US energy policy is dominated by lawyers under SuperPAC control.
    Mar 15 11:26 AM | 21 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • U.S. Energy Policy Is Responsible for Unrest in Egypt [View article]
    well, i never said U.S. ethanol mandates were the "sole" reason for food prices going up. what i did say is that the mandates certainly exacerbate the problem, and did so from the minute the Bush administration came up with wrong-headed policy. the problem is that investment money no longer trust U.S. energy, fiscal, or monetary policy. so it drives this money into hard assets like oil, food, and precious metals. ethanol is just a kicker. it's as though the U.S. policymakers want to get ALL energy policy wrong, not just bits and pieces.

    QE2 doesn't cause inflation? wow - i seriously disagree with you on that one. you probably think inflation in the U.S. is low right now because the Fed says so, right? so, you are not making home insurance, doctor bills, dental bills, or making food or gasoline purchases? please. the Federal Reserve has depreciated the U.S. dollar by 95% since its conception. nothing says more about their incompetence than that fact.

    about the only thing i may agree with you is a redone energy infrastructure. but it will take *time* to build it all based on renewables as you suggest. in the meantime, we keep consuming 20 million barrels of oil a day in the U.S. (60% of it is imported) while we have an abundance of cheap and clean natural gas that we could be powering our vehicles with! so, please remember that the next time you gas-up your vehicle or go shopping for a new one and realize chances are you cannot even buy an NGV in your town (although Ford and GM both make them and sell them in foreign lands).
    Jan 29 09:53 PM | 21 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • U.S. Energy Policy Is Responsible for Unrest in Egypt [View article]
    Well said Moon! And you have the priority right - we must solve the foreign import problem first - if not, it doesn't matter what fiscal or monetary policies the government tries. $1 billion a month (and rising...) is simply too big an obstacle to overcome. Apparently, Obama's policy (like Bush before him) is to ignore it and hope it goes away. That is why the trade deficit is often reported by specifying the "non-China" component even though the oil component dwarfs it. So to, the inflation numbers the government like to highlight takes out food and energy. As a wise man once said, the first step in solving a problem is acknowledging the problem. Apparently all the PhD's employed by the U.S. government are not aware of this saying... (they actually are aware, they are just getting enriched by ignoring it...)
    Jan 29 04:55 PM | 21 Likes Like |Link to Comment