Outrun Change

We need to learn quickly to keep up with the massive change around us so we don't get run over. We need to outrun change.

More good stuff on Bakken – 2/17

Here’s a few more articles on Bakken I found interesting – adjusting to growth and drop in crude oil prices. How would you handle calls for police service increasing by a factor of 180 over the last 8 years?

1/9 – Oil Patch Dispatch – Record number of births reported in Oil Patch in 2014 – Along with the huge number of workers moving to North Dakota, there is another year of record baby births.  Main hospitals in Minot, Williston, and Dickinson report increases of 5%, 7%, and 13% respectively.

Read more…

Be careful on the ‘net. It is cruel and unforgiving. Draw wrong attention and you get dissected, then shamed.

If you are in any social media platform at all, you need to be really careful about what you say. You need to be cautious in saying things that are flippant or can be misunderstood.

There are severe dangers that go along with all the supercool technology available today.  This article is cross-posted from my other blog, Nonprofit Update.

The twitter shame mob

A PR manager from a company sent smart mouth tweets to her 170 followers. Sent a few before travelling to London. Checked her phone there, found no reaction, and sent a few more smarty-pants comments.

While on the 11 hour flight to Johannesburg, another person saw her tweet, and sent it to his 15,000 followers hinting the person was a bigoted racist.

You know where this is going. Oh, her extended family she was on her way to visit? They are all ANC supporters.

The attack tweet went viral.  By the time this person landed in South Africa, there was someone waiting to take pictures of her as she turned on her phone and saw the deluge. Huge numbers of people around the world were trashing her and visiting Orwell’s two minute hate on her.

Read more…

2 graphs of annual oil production in North Dakota through 2014

Here is are two pictures of the production of crude oil in the state. The monthly production is multiplied by the state’s calculation of average price with the monthly amounts aggregated.

Dollar value of production, in billions:

12-14 dollar productin by year

Amount of production, in millions of barrels:

Read more…

2 graphs showing dramatic change in production dynamics in N.D. – 2-15

The price of crude oil realized in North Dakota is lower than the Gulf coast due to transportation costs. Here is a graph of the average price for the month as reported by the Department of Mineral Resources, Oil and Gas Division, of the North Dakota Industrial Commission. You can find the reports here.

12-14 price graph

Also, the number of rigs is dropping fast. Here is the average rig count, with an actual as of Friday’s report:

Read more…

Oil production in N.D. hits record in December ‘14, breaking 1.2M bopd

Oil production averaged 1,227,344 in December, up from a slightly revised 1,188,258 in November, a 3.29% increase. Only passed the 1M bopd mark in April, eight months ago. Up 22% in eight months.

Rig count is dropping rapidly. Prices as well. More on that here.

Update before the graphs:  A few tidbits from the Department of mineral Resources director Lynn Helms on the information released Friday, as mentioned in the Bismarck Tribune’s article, Daily oil production passes 1.2 million barrels. He mentioned with oil prices starting to recover, there is a “renewed confidence” that the big trigger of oil tax reductions will not take place.

Article says, as I’ve mentioned previously, that the little trigger was pulled effective the first of February.

Flaring targets

Flaring dropped to 24% in December. He expects the January target to be met.

Targets for flaring, per the article:

  • 26% – 10/1/14
  • 23% – 1/1/15
  • 15% – two years
  • 10% – six years

Now to the graphs. Here is some statistical data to show the story better than my words can tell:

12-14 4 year production

For a longer term perspective:

Read more…

Risk of harm is bad. Certainty of harm is good. The disconnect in assessing risks of getting the energy we need.

Sometimes you just have to scratch your head wondering about the fantasmagorical world inhabited by some regulators. A good dose of ridicule might bring them back to earth, but the chances are small. I’ll give it a try anyway.

1/14 – ReWire – Report: Fracking Imperils Southern California Residents, Wildlife – A report from the California Department of Oil, Gas & Geothermal Resources concluded that any fracking in three specific oil fields in the state would have

“significant and unavoidable” environmental damage”.

There would be significant risk of damage to:

  • Air quality
  • Wildlife
  • Public and worker safety
  • Increased greenhouse emissions
  • recreational use of surrounding lands
  • transportation and traffic problems

This, in a state that is building wind turbines as fast as the rare earth minerals can be mined and the concrete can be poured to get the slice-and-dice blades spinning.

This, in a state that has a huge solar plant that is killing unknown and intentionally undercounted numbers of protected & migratory birds and wants to build many more such wing-toaster facilities.

Read more…

First results on marijuana tax collections in Colorado – #14

Legalization of marijuana is a natural experiment in how a newly-legal market responds to heavy regulation. First results are in on tax revenue harvested by Colorado. (lousy pun intended)

2/11 – AP at ABCNews – Colorado’s Pot Tax Tally Has Lessons for Other States – Report is in on how much tax revenue was realized from recreational marijuana.

Results? Read more…

More info on the triggers for drop in ND oil tax rate

There are two triggers for dropping the tax on oil in North Dakota. These were put in place back in 1987 to encourage production. With the dramatic drop in oil prices, these two triggers are now of interest.

2/5 – Reuters – Clock starts ticking on $5.3 bln tax break for North Dakota oilRead more…

Silk Road: Felony conviction in a world far away

I’ve previously discussed Silk Road as one of the worlds far away from me that I’ll never visit. Learning about stuff is why I’m writing this blog.

Last week Ross Ulbricht was convicted of multiple felonies for his role in running Silk Road, a place where you could buy all sorts of illegal stuff.

Some recent articles that help me better understand this bizarre alternate universe.

Read more…

Does anything exist beyond what I can see with my own eyes? “The Overnighters” as an illustration.



(Lousy photos by James Ulvog of a man camp. This small facility is in a small city between Williston and Minot. There are a lot of these man camps around Western North Dakota that provide basic sleeping and dining facilities. They are all full. Sorry I don’t have pictures of the many that I’ve seen which are far larger than this one.)


Just one aspect of the brilliance of Jesse Moss’s movie “The Overnighters” is that the nuance and subtlety in it creates a springboard for so many discussions. It also serves as a Rorschach test to reveal the worldview of those watching the movie.

One core question forces its way into view after looking at reactions by viewers. A few ways to describe the issue:

  • Does anything exist beyond the limit of my vision?
  • Is there anything more to a story than what a camera can see? Beyond what people say when the camera is running?
  • Is there more to know about any issue than what a movie can cover in 102 minutes?

From reactions to the movie, many people believe the answer to those questions is a resounding “no.”

Read more…

About those dropping oil prices – #13

More articles on the drop in oil prices I found interesting.

Huge news Wednesday, 2/4, as oil collapsed big time dropping from about 53.50 to 48.50. Oh my, a $5 drop in just one day. Obviously gonna’ break the $40 mark this month, huh?

Oh wait.

Up 2.50 yesterday and another dollar as I write this morning.

Reminds me of the old joke on the days’ news about the stock market:  Stock market was off 500 points today before rallying and closing up 1 and a quarter.

1/24 – The Economist – The tough get going – Companies in the energy field are working to improve their economics.

Read more…

My favorite lines from movie “The Overnighters”. Some disclosures.

“I will not give in to despair because hopeless should never win and hopeless is a lie.”

Former pastor Jay Reinke, as the Overnighters program shuts down.

I agree. Hopeless is a lie. Despair is a lie.

“The problem is we’re working with sinners and some people are fearful.”

Andrea Reinke, as the family discusses complications of helping someone who is a registered sex offender.

Those are two of my favorite lines from the movie “The Overnighters”, which I watched for the second time last night.

Feet of clay

As Mrs. Reinke pointed out, everyone you will ever deal with is a sinner.

That concept has lots of implications. The movie does a superb job illustrating that concept. Consider:

Price cut on print books

I’ve dropped the prices for the print copies of my books available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and iTunes store.

Here is what you can find on-line:


 Tragedy of Fraud – Insider Trading Edition

Story of Scott London’s fall from regional audit partner at KPMG to prison inmate because of his insider trading.

Read more…

“The Overnighters” movie available now

A movie about the oil boom in North Dakota, the impact in Williston, and how that played out in one church is now available at Amazon. I preordered a copy and it is downloading as I write.

Have been looking forward to seeing it a second time. I knew the story, particularly the ending, before seeing the movie the first time. Now I can watch the movie knowing how the movie presented the story.

Will have more to say about the movie after I watch it another time or two.

Read more…

The change from Apps is just getting started. (Radical change #3)

Another part of my effort to explain that while I see radical change on the horizon in other areas, I have a blind spot how those things will affect auditing.

1/19 – Mark Mills at Forbes – The Mobile Revolution Has Only Just Begun – Look again at the radical change in the last century:

Not only have radios become cheap but they’ve collapsed in size while rising in capability. A trailer-pulled radio that weighed one ton in WWI is now a chipset weighing a fraction of an ounce buried inside a smartphone that can handle one million-fold more traffic than those first Marconis.

Combine that with a computer the size of a phone and you have a smart phone.

Read more…

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