Tom Scollon

Maybe you need to live several centuries to identify paradigm change – but we can always hazard a view.

In my life time I have seen much political, social and economic change – which could be the story of volumes.

We are seeing the diminishing power of the west and the rise of China – to a ranking it has occupied for numerous centuries.  Back to the norm.  We have seen the rise and fall and power play of Russia.  We have seen the rise and fall of the Middle East – many times and in many ways.  Aside from the Ottoman era there was of course the rise and fall of the Roman Empire.  And others.  Numerous.  They have come and gone.

Mostly in the name of power and greed and money.  The more we change the more we don’t.  I read once that empires crumble from within – from the decadence of declining moral standards.

I jump to another topic.  I look at the turmoil in the Middle East and the depressed oil price which of course has been one of the keys to power over recent decades.

Let’s look at the big view of light crude prices over the last quarter of a century:

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And of course we have seen in recent weeks a recovery from a decade low:

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But nothing to write home about.

The more interesting chart is the first one – the monthly.  It postulates further recovery and then Armageddon.  

Well maybe not in 5-6 years – but the world is fast developing alternative energy sources and equally importantly more energy efficient ways of life.  Not that we as consumers really care that much about the environment – but rather it is part of the technology tide we are swept along with and get our kicks from.  Yes one day we may even be wearing energy creating clothing as we walk.  My mind boggles with many sci-fi ideas that one day will become reality.

In my last article I hypothesized that even raw materials as we have used them in the last 15 years, may also be a thing of the past.

Now there is no need to go out and restructure your investment portfolio to reflect all of this. But as Bob Dylan sang in the 60’s – “the times they are a changin’.


Enjoy the ride

Tom Scollon