Monthly Archives: December 2014

No Balls Means Bad Numbers

There is a terrible affliction among managers in the large companies which make up the modern oil and gas industry.  The medical term for it is “lacking balls” and it prevents those with the condition from making decisions. (Before I go on, let me just say that this is nothing to do with women in the industry: Golda Meir and Margaret Thatcher showed that women can have balls, and sometimes more so than their male peers.) Let’s suppose I was […]


“However did this happen?!”

I once worked for a company that was, by and large, run by a group of acquaintances if not actual mates.  The company was appallingly run, and survived largely on handouts from its parent company that did extremely well out of a monopoly position kindly granted to it by the government.  A feature of this company was regular reorganisations which saw the same dozen or so men (all of the same nationality) shuffled between the senior positions in HQ like […]


Rouble Trouble

Back in September 2012, Russian president Vladimir Putin was feeling confident: Russia’s President Vladimir Putin has said its possible to use the rouble as a reserve currency. “We hear more and more statements about reserve currencies,” the president said at the APEC CEO summit, claiming the “Rouble can claim for the role of reserve currency. Let’s see how that’s working out in December 2014: Oh dear. The collapse of the ruble against the dollar is mainly the result of the […]