Sunday, August 18, 2013

Lights Out Arab Spring...SA

There are four stages to civil unrest. It begins with demonstrations, moves to protests, then violence and it ends with riots. This is not good for a society unless life is so untenable that it needs to clean house and try something new. This is how revolutions start. We had one in Libya which is still a work in progress. We have one happening now in Syria.
In the Middle East the global community has seen the Arab Spring movement in many countries. Egypt is the latest example of the third stage and it appears to be entering the final stage. If you recall, Algeria entered this stage and it took a decade to end it. This is not good for Egypt's citizens and world economies. Whether emotions calm down in the historical leading Muslim nation or not, there are other problems looming. The infrastructure within the nation is suffering and it could be the root cause for many problems throughout the world.
Although it hardly receives media attention with all the unrest in Egypt, there have been rolling blackouts within the nation. When it is reported, the tone is that the leaders in government do this to curtail their citizens. This is false. According to Ken Moors of Oil & Energy Investors, it is happening because the utility companies lack the resources to keep the lights on. Electricity production comes from either water, oil, natural gas, nuclear, coal, sun or some hybrid form. With people not paying their bills and a dysfunctional government, utility operators are left to their own devices. Moors estimates that by November under the present conditions, the nation will go dark.
When or if this happens, the global community will see future shock.
In Syria, President Bashar Al-Assad does this as part of his military struggle to defeat the revolutionaries within his nation. He cuts off water, electricity and fuel shipments to areas he deems hostile. The Egyptian military in charge will do the same thing in short order. One, because it is an effective option and the operators in charge of producing electricity will inform them of the current situation. Rolling blackouts will save fuel and time to regain control of their society. It will happen in Egypt and soon wherever people gather to demonstrate against their leaders. These acts will push their societies towards protests and the other two stages. We are in troubling times for world peace.
SPECIAL AWARD: No L&C this week. Instead we have an award recognition. It goes to T. Mark Jones. He did receive $597million from the federal government as a whistle-blower. His story is a life struggle against Big Pharmacy. Jones opened a small clinic in Key West in the 80s to help aid victims. After a few years of success, a big pharmaceutical company came to town. Suddenly, he lost all his business. In fact, he was put out of business. He looked into the reasons. He found out the big company gave kickbacks to all doctors if they used their services. Jones could not prove this, although he kept up the fight and gathering information. He finally was able to prove to the government that after the kickbacks, Big Pharma would pad their prices to Medicare, stealing billions from the government program. It is estimated by government officials that Jones es pose will save Medicare over $15.7b in the next decade. Consider this: this is only one region within the nation. The government watchdogs should be all over these crooks. Maybe we could hire some "old" KGB guys to do the job? Anyway, congrats!

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