... is decidedly schizophrenic. One one hand, business as usual; on the other, looming clouds of financial disaster. And its always about oil. With price per barrel down, and apparently going to stay down for the foreseeable future, the one-trick economy here that runs on petrochemicals staggers like a punch-drunk boxer, with the bell not coming soon enough. Seriously though, the nation must be ruing all those years when flush with easy oil money they should have been developing new industries and businesses, and instead all of that money went into .... Wait a minute, where did it all go? Somebody had better start looking for it. And with the Kashagan fiasco still sucking money up with no end of that black hole in sight, the future isn't pretty here. One wonders how much longer the people, in the French sense of le peuple, will tolerate diminishing value of their wages, the worst performing currency in the world, and a corruption ranking in the bottom 1/4 of the world. If it was me, I'd be pretty ticked off. I guess that's the advantage of a one-party democracy. Everything runs smoothly - until .... it doesn't. And then this climate change stuff. Sooner or later, if the world weans itself in part or all of the need for petrochemicals, whats going to fill the coffers here? Horse meat? Funny hats? Locally sourced cheese? Felt boots? How about ice cubes. This country could easily export millions of tons of them annually. India and Pakistan could use them - and the Emirates are even closer, by air. Hmmm, maybe I could get an ORAU grant to research this.