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This impossibility in predicting long/mid term oil prices is a serious problem for governments and business planing ahead. But this is all part of the game: the destructive process of dependence on scarce resources. If a steady increase in prices was the outcome (as some believed) business would be able to plan ahead, for instance hedging on the futures market. Contrarily, these unpredictable price swings are heavily disruptive.

Maybe it's time to read J K Galbraith again, who argued that the industrial economy is incompatible with free market prices and more or less openly advocated price controls.

Most economists teach a theoretical framework that has been shown to be fundamentally useless. -- James K. Galbraith

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sat Dec 13th, 2008 at 04:00:44 PM EST

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