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Dave Cohen

Decline of the Empire

Contributor since: 29 Sep 2011

Dave Cohen


Dave Cohen writes the blog Decline Of The Empire. His commentaries cover a wide variety of subjects, including the American economy & macro-economics, the oil markets, peak oil, politics & policy, environmental issues and global warming. Dave was writing search engine software before he gave up on the industry in 2005 after 20 years as a software engineer. Dave has a M.A. in theoretical linguistics and was working on a Ph.D. before leaving The University of Texas at Austin in 1985 to do research in Artificial Intelligence. He attended the University of Chicago as an undergraduate.

Latest articles from Dave

  • Have the Canadian Tar Sands had their Day?

    Published 02 April 2013 | viewed 32,020 times

    Is Canada's tar sands expansion in trouble? Probably not, but the issue is complicated, so bear with me.Back on November 9, 2012 I wrote a…

  • U.S. Oil Production Tops 7 Million Barrels-Per-Day

    Published 07 March 2013 | viewed 26,456 times

    Back in 2006-2007 when I was writing about peak oil, I would never have believed that U.S. crude oil production would reach 7 million barrels-per-day…

  • Why have GDP Growth and Energy Growth Separated?

    Published 11 February 2013 | viewed 10,404 times

    On Friday I put up the following chart, and invited readers to comment on what's wrong with it.From Bloomberg's Sustainable Energy In America 2013 Factbook.…

  • Peak Phosphorous: What Can we Expect?

    Published 10 December 2012 | viewed 6,889 times

    In an editorial called Be persuasive. Be brave. Be arrested (if necessary) (if necessary) which recently appeared in the science journal Nature, Jeremy Grantham argues…

  • The Close Relationship between Economic Growth and Carbon Emissions

    Published 01 November 2012 | viewed 30,835 times

    Some readers didn't quite believe the premise in my reprinted Tuesday post How To Think About The Future (Redux). I'll repeat that assumption here.As we…

  • Why the US is NOT the New Saudi Arabia

    Published 25 October 2012 | viewed 13,257 times

    Here we go again, another ‘Planet Stupid’ update. All posts like this one have a predictable structure. Some egregious baloney is put out by a…

  • Why Electric Cars Don’t have a Future

    Published 15 September 2012 | viewed 37,331 times

    A controversy has broken out over what it costs General Motors (GM) to produce a Chevy Volt. A Reuters reporter got things going when he…

  • Why are we Still Doing so Little About Climate Change?

    Published 13 August 2012 | viewed 7,629 times

    Freelance journalist Beth Gardiner had an editorial called We're All Climate Change Idiots in the New York TimesSunday Review on July 21, 2012. There are…

  • Using Geoengineering to Control the Climate

    Published 31 July 2012 | viewed 6,930 times

    Let me say at the outset that geoengineering to control Earth's climate is not the wisest path which Homo sapiens ("Wise Man") could travel down.…

  • Signs that China is Heading for a Crash

    Published 11 July 2012 | viewed 5,485 times

    There is something perversely satisfying in watching humans screw up on a massive scale, and especially so when you've seen it coming for years now.…

  • Should we Still be Concerned with Peak Oil?

    Published 25 June 2012 | viewed 11,193 times

    With oil prices falling precipitously, this seems like a good time to reassess the widely anticipated phenomenon known as peak oil. How much of a…

  • Is a Carbon Disaster Brewing in The Pacific Northwest?

    Published 22 May 2012 | viewed 4,684 times

    Optimists and politicians like to remind us that U.S. exports are booming. Unfortunately, so are imports.The trade deficit in March, from Calculated RiskAn increasingly large…

  • Can China's Monopolisation of the REE Market be Reduced?

    Published 04 January 2012 | viewed 13,780 times

    What does this percentage refer to? 97% That's the percentage of global production of Rare Earth Elements (REEs) controlled by the People's Republic of China.…

  • Biofuels False Promise: Breakthroughs May be Tougher Than Previously Thought

    Published 21 October 2011 | viewed 18,551 times

    In the August issue of Scientific American, David Beillo published an article called The False Promise Of Biofuels. I have a paper copy, but not…

  • Prepare Yourselves for The Next Oil Price Shock

    Published 28 June 2011 | viewed 21,102 times

    Looking at the oil supply & demand fundamentals, next year looks like an accident waiting to happen. If economic growth in emerging economies remains on…

  • America's Invisible Energy Policy

    Published 30 May 2011 | viewed 4,256 times

    Once in a while I point out that the United States lacks an energy policy to deal with our oil problems, but we do have…

  • Sunday Oil Market Roundup

    Published 22 May 2011 | viewed 6,447 times

    The Nymex oil price has calmed down a bit in the last week, and now stands at $100.10/barrel.  Mysteriously, that's about 3 bucks higher than…

  • Invest In The USA? Why Bother?

    Published 24 December 2010 | viewed 5,423 times

    Capital will flow to where there's money to be made. It's just that simple. America's "accomodative" monetary policy has spurred a new wave of corporate…

  • Understanding the Oil Markets in 2010

    Published 15 December 2010 | viewed 6,658 times

    I'm starting to think that the oil markets in 2010 are just a more chaotic version of the markets as they were in 2007. You…

  • Volcker Critiques Every Corner of the Financial System

    Published 01 October 2010 | viewed 4,571 times

    Last week, octogenerian Paul Volcker lost his grip. Volcker, who was the Fed chairman before Alan "Bubbles" Greenspan, remembers a time when the Wall Street…

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