A “Giant” Success for San Francisco

It happened. The San Francisco Giants clinched the World Series for the third time in five years. A miracle? Perhaps, but also astounding is the economic impact its local baseball team has brought to the city.

The even-numbered years were the golden years, as the Giants won the World Series in 2010, 2012, and 2014. San Francisco experienced a drought of national sports championships until the Giants took reign, consequently bringing in larger crowds for local businesses.

In 2010, the city embraced the worldwide brand recognition of San Francisco as a new sports hotspot. Advertising costs during home games skyrocketed, and local tourism was at an all time high. From hotel and other sales taxes, the city felt the economic boon of winning its first World Series since 1954. According to Staci Slaughter, the Giants spokeswoman, sales at the ballpark store were about 150 percent higher than normal.

San Francisco Giants 2014 World Series victory parade

The exposure of the 2010 title also caught the attention of Larry Ellison, chief executive of Oracle, to choose San Francisco as the host city of America’s Cup – the sailing event of the year. To everyone’s surprise, this baseball fame was not a one-time event, as the city geared up for yet another wave of Giants fans in 2012.

The San Francisco Giants “swept” the Detroit Tigers to take the 2012 title – and during the two days the city hosted the World Series games, baseball fans added about $17.3 million into the local economy. Local restaurants were better prepared for the massive crowds, and the city embraced the incoming visitors with open arms. Although the numbers aren’t in for the 2014 winning season, it is expected that San Francisco was successful in bringing in record-breaking revenue.

Hosting World Series games is bound to bring in large profits, but it is still important to consider the costs associated with such an event. There is a parade put on by the winning city to celebrate the World Series title, and this is no cheap affair. For the 2012 celebration parade, the Giants dished out approximately $1 million for the set up, and the city itself paid $225,000 for security and transportation costs. Because of the excitement of the parade, attendance at local schools dropped 20 percent, resulting in a loss of $150,000 from the state (educational funding). This does not begin to cover the costs of damage to the city from rowdy crowds, or the cost of a large portion of its labor force on “sick leave” to watch the game; however, in San Francisco’s case, the benefits seem to outweigh the costs.


The San Francisco Giants parade turnout.

In addition to the crowd-drawing holiday season, San Francisco has persistently accumulated profits during “Orange October,” a phenomena that will hopefully continue throughout the Giants legacy. The baseball team is also riding their wave of success, as plans for a new enticing neighborhood near the ballpark is in the works. The $1.6 billion “Mission Rock” project would bring in thousands of new jobs, and another outlet for retail stores and restaurants to expand.

Copy of Park_Full

Design plans for “Mission Rock.”

The Giants have put San Francisco on the map as a sports celebrated city, and the profits provide evidence for this success. Just a tip – because of increasing costs, it wouldn’t be a bad idea for fans to start booking their hotel rooms for 2016.

Taylor Swift VS. Spotify

Spotify has been in a long battle with the music industry over its controversial streaming business model. While the music industry has undergone a lot of change in the last decade it still hasn’t fully adjusted to the change, leaving the industry in somewhat of a standoff. Spotify, currently the leading streaming company, has been at the forefront of this stand off as they work to introduce the music industry to a new revenue model. Over the last several years Spotify has been making strides toward acceptance as they have worked to educate artists about their site and have steadily increased the royalties they pay out. This acceptance however hit a major hiccup 2 weeks ago, when Taylor Swift pulled her entire collection of music off the site.

On the subject Taylor stated, “I think there should be an inherent value placed on art. I didn’t see that happening, perception-wise, when I put my music on Spotify.”
Taylor has been vocal about her distaste of streaming services as she feels streaming sites are part of the reason album sales are shrinking. Though Taylor has voiced a negative opinion about streaming as a whole she has left her collection on both Beats Music and Rhapsody. Before pulling her collection off Spotify, Taylor had asked the site to make her content only available to paying users which Spotify responded was against their policy. Taylor also asked for her content to only be available outside the United States but this again was against Spotify’s policy. The two sites that still have Taylor’s content are sites that require a paid membership.

“With Beats Music and Rhapsody you have to pay for a premium package in order to access my albums. And that places a perception of value on what I’ve created.” – Taylor swift

While Taylor has made a very public separation from streaming, the real question is whether or not this will affect the Spotify. In response to the ordeal Spotify’s founder Daniel Ek released an open letter to the singer explaining why she made the wrong decision in pulling her music.

In the essay, “2 Billion and Counting” Daniel Ek wrote- “Taylor Swift is absolutely right: music is art, art has real value, and artists deserve to be paid for it. We started Spotify because we love music and piracy was killing it. So all the talk swirling around lately about how Spotify is making money on the backs of artists upsets me big time. Our whole reason for existence is to help fans find music and help artists connect with fans through a platform that protects them from piracy and pays them for their amazing work.”- Daniel Ek
This letter makes a very important argument, which is Spotify makes money where it didn’t exist by combating illegal downloading. In the same letter the founder explains that Taylor was on track to make 6 million this year had she left her collection on Spotify. Further than the 6 million the number was on track to increase significantly every year as the site grows. Daniel Ek made it clear in the essay that Spotify is not against artists; rather they are working very hard to make sure artists are properly compensated.

“Here’s the thing I really want artists to understand: Our interests are totally aligned with yours. Even if you don’t believe that’s our goal, look at our business. Our whole business is to maximize the value of your music,” he said. “We don’t use music to drive sales of hardware or software. We use music to get people to pay for music. The more we grow, the more we’ll pay you.” –Daniel EK
The Spotify battle is long over as it is a matter of educating both the public and those in the music industry on the business model of streaming. Spotify’s response to Taylor shows that the site is willing to fight back against artists to make streaming successful. While Taylors move to take down her music got a lot of buzz it, also got a lot of people stepping up to defend Spotify.  If Spotify is able to continue its efforts to educate artist on the benefits of streaming, it may have a fighting chance.  Spotify has proven that they can handle even one to the biggest pop stars dismissing their site. Though the future is not clear, it looks like the streaming site is here to stay.

Facebook In The Workplace


Facebook wants to enter the workplace and in a big way. In the next year Facebook hopes to launch a new side to its site that would allow colleagues to collaborate on projects, share documents and function as an in office communicator. In Facebook’s London headquarters the company says they have been developing the program for a long time.
The site would feature a very similar design to the existing personal site, but would strictly be for inner office collaboration. User’s personal profiles will have no connection to the work profiles. The site would feature similar news feed and group functions, allowing users to post content for the entire company as well as preform smaller team work. While much of what the site will feature is still speculation many have wondered how Facebook for work will rival preexisting office applications.
Forbes contributor Erika Morphy states- “that Salesforce Chatter is already a popular service used by thousands of Salesforce.com users. Slack has also become a popular collaboration service that’s challenging Atlassian’s HipChat and Campfire, with its clean interface for chatting with colleagues or sharing documents and links.”
Further than just communication sites alone there has been speculation about Facebooks profile feature and how it could function in a very similar way to LinkedIn. If users are able to create a public business profile that moves with them from organization to organization as a user changes jobs the site could function as an online resume tool.
While there are many existing office communicator application out there already, there is speculation that Facebooks well-known name will lead it to success. Many offices have had to ban Facebook across the country as their employees are too addicted to the site. Facebook in the office could prove to be very popular among employees leading many companies to switch communicators. More so then popularity the familiar interface would mean little transition time for companies as the majority of employees are already accustomed with how the site works. The counter to this argument being that most employees have no say over their company’s communication systems as it is often a decision made in IT departments. With Facebook at work the site will only be available to employees if the company as a whole signs up for the service.
Facebook also faces another issue, privacy; can it get companies to trust the site? In today’s corporate structure much of what happens within the walls of a company is top secret. Posting and collaborating on sensitive documents on the internet would be worrisome to many.
Facebook has many issues that it must look at to become successful in this office space, however if done right it has the possibility to change the game. Facebook at work is currently in the testing phase at a select few organizations across the country. Though it is still unclear when Facebook will officially launch the site, it is definitely something to watch for.

Indulgent Pet Parents Stimulate The Pet Industry

In Hollywood, there’s a luxurious hotel that provides three levels of modern and stylish suites, spa and wellness center, spacious playground and chauffeur service with luxurious vehicles like Ferrari, Lamborghini Gallardo, Bentley, Porsche or Rolls Royce. But it’s different from Hilton in that the customers here are all dogs.

The D Pet Hotel, opened 7 years ago, is one of the first luxurious dog hotels appeared in Los Angeles. Now it has developed into a chain hotel with two branches each locates in New York City and Scottsdale, Arizona.

The growing of luxurious dog hotel business, as an example of the pet grooming and boarding industry, is only one aspect of the overall prosperity of pet industry. According to American Pet Products Association (APPA), the total U.S. pet industry expenditures has grown continuously during the past few years. Even during the Great Recession, the sales in this section didn’t come across a decline.

Total U.S. Pet Industry Expenditures

Graph 1. Total U.S. Pet Industry Expenditures

Pet Ownership

Graph 2. Pet Ownership

The increasing number of pet ownership, the rise of household disposable income and pet parents’ willingness to pamper their pets, are the three main factors that drive the prosperous trend. As the second graph shows, bird, cat, dog and freshwater fish are the four main popular pets in households. The number of pets outweighs the number of households also shows that some families owns more than one pet. According to Alissa Cruz, the owner of D Pet Hotel, one of her customer has seven dogs in her family, and there are several others have 4-5 dogs.

Single-person households and aging population are the major forces to drive up the pet ownership. Gay couples and middle-aged housewives are also two demographics that tend to have a pet companion, the general manager of D Pet Hotel said. For gay couples, a pet is the perfect alternative to a kid. For middle-aged housewives, a pet can keep their life busy when their children are pursuing college education in another city. In July 2014, IBISWorld Industry Research Division released a study report on Pet Stores in the U.S., in which it predicts the number of pets ownership will increase at an average annual rate of 2.1% during the next five years, which also benefits the revenue of pet industry.

Graph 3. products and services segmentation

The same report shows that major spending in pet stores industry are made on the following sections, pet food, pet supplies, pet services, and live animals.

Live animals accounts for the smallest percentage as a pet is one-time purchase, but products in other segments will be purchased repeatedly during the whole pet’s life. In addition, more and more people choose to foster or adopt a pet instead of buying them from stores.

Although pet services only account for 13% percent of the total revenue, they “have been the fastest-growing product segment for the industry over the past five years”, says the IBIS report. Pet services include grooming, haircuts, baths, toenail trimming, tooth brushing, training, boarding, daycare and etc.

Thanks to the notion that pets are family members, pet parents are becoming increasingly indulgent. The rise of disposable income also enables pet owners to pamper their animal companions. That is how D Pet Hotel came into being.

Pet supplies include over-the-counter medicines, food bowls, collars and leashes, pet clothing, crushes and combs and various accessories for pets. According to IBISWorld report, this segment is mainly driven by the rising spending on over-the-counter medicine products, for the cost of pharmaceuticals and the standards of routine care has increased during the past five years.

As the largest segment in pet store industry, pet food has been experiencing a trend towards premium standards. All-natural and organic can no longer satisfy indulgent pet parents’ needs, various premium pet foods like raw diet food, weight-control food, specialized formulas for sensitive stomachs, and freshly baked cakes and cookies as treats have appeared in the market. The increasing number of pet numbers also contribute to the large chuck of revenue.

However, pet supplies and pet food segments are highly competitive. Supermarkets and mass merchandisers, like Walmart and Costco are selling  similar pet products  at more affordable price and offer the convenience of one-stop shopping, so customers are lured from specialty stores. IBISWorld report shows, from 2009 to 2014, due to the competition from supermarkets, and department stores and some online retailers, “the number of industry operators contracted at an average annual rate of 0.6% to an estimated 13,195 companies”.

Generally speaking, the pet store industry is mature. The estimated product saturation will be reached in 2019. But as pet owners tend to humanize their pets more and more, services will be further diversified and become premium. The estimated revenue annual growth in pet store industry will be 2.3% from 2014 to 2019.

Sephora Might Face Class Action for Racism

Sephora, one of the most famous cosmetics shops in the world, just finished its semiannual sale on November 10. The 20% off event was for VIBs and VIB ROGUEs, who have, respectively, spent more than $350 or $1,000 in the past year. However, many qualified accounts with Asian surnames were blocked during the sale this year. Sephora released an official announcement on its Facebook page on Nov. 7, stating that they were deactivating accounts to stop reselling. But the company is facing possible charges not because their attempt to regulate its market. Many accounts with Asian surnames were deactivated, though the owners claimed that they’d never resold any items. Some of them even said that they didn’t buy anything on Sephora.com during the sale this year, yet their accounts were still locked. Now there’s an outrage on Sephora’s Facebook page.


Many Asian consumers are now complaining on Sephora’s Facebook page about their accounts’ being deactivated for no reason.

It seems that the reselling phenomenon is the key issue here. However, Sephora actually has its stores in China. Why do Chinese purchase oversea? This article will look into the reasons why people resell Sephora products to China.

As mentioned, Sephora has its stores in China, but people still buy from Sephora.com. There’re mainly 2 reasons: Some brands that are exclusive in the U.S., and more importantly, it’s much cheaper to buy directly from the website. For instance, the price for the Rose Mask produced by Fresh is $58 on Sephora.com. Chinese Sephora stores don’t carry the brand. If consumers turn to Fresh stores – which now only exist in Beijing and Shanghai – to make a purchase, it will cost them¥500, which is about $82 – the price is 41.4% higher than it is in America. This is because Chinese government places high customs tax on import goods.

Besides, it is said that the quality of skincare products sold in manufacture countries is much better than those sold elsewhere, which is considered an open secret in the cosmetic industry – and Sephora sells a lot domestic products. Last but not least, Chinese Sephora also doesn’t do well in marketing itself, so few people actually go to stores and make a purchase – these are all the reasons why Chinese consumers turned to Sephora in America.

However, high customs tax, low product quality and diversity, and poor image of Chinese Sephora are not the only reasons why resellers exist. One of those whose accounts were banned decided to file a class action against Sephora for discrimination against Asians. He made an announcement on Weibo, encouraging people whose accounts had been unfairly deactivated to leave their contact information to the lawyer in charge. Interestingly, he mentioned that he had asked certain promotion account to help him tweet the message, but he was refused because there’s interest conflict between helping him and the account’s relationship with Sephora.


The Weibo announcement made by a Chinese consumer whose account was deactivated for no reason. He’s now working with a lawyer to file against Sephora for discrimination against Asians, especially Chinese.

It’s interesting because, many promotion accounts on Weibo constantly tweet about sales going on on Sephora.com. However, Sephora.com explicitly points out on its website that international shipping only includes Germany, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, South Korea, and the United Kingdom. So it doesn’t ship to China, yet it’s advertising on Chinese promotion accounts, where most of Chinese consumers get the latest promotion information.

Screen Shot 2014-11-12 at 4.54.33 PM

Shipping policy on Sephora.com.

Screen Shot 2014-11-12 at 10.01.05 PM

One of the Weibo accounts which had tweeted about promotions on Sephora.com. According to Rise_Against_Sephora, it is this account which has refused his request for help with the class action.

tweets The same promotion account had publicized information about how Chinese can buy from foreign websites such as 6PM and Saks, which shows that its target audience includes those who are living in China, though its account description is “looking for deals for Chinese who are living in North America.”

Now that Chinese consumers have seen the promotion information, they want to make a purchase. Since Sephora doesn’t ship to China, consumers use transshipment companies to deliver their products. Here’s how it works. They buy things on Sephora.com. The address they leave on the website belongs to a transshipment company. The company will receive the orders, and will send them to the buyers. Everything looks perfect, until Sephora began to ban transshipment addresses. From more than a year ago, consumers started to complain that their orders had been declined due to detected transshipment addresses.


A consumer was complaining about the fact that Sephora doesn’t allow people to use transshipment companies to purchase.

 Since consumers can no longer make a purchase on their own, they start to look for individuals to help them place an order. This is the most major reason why there’re resellers targeting at Sephora. Some people said that resellers might hoard hundreds of the same products while they’re on sale, which is not fair to other consumers. However, on one hand, there’s a limit on the number of the same products that one can purchase online, so it should be hard for one to hoard. But on the other hand, though Sephora has made a limitation online, it doesn’t limit the quantities that one can purchase in stores, except for some limited-edition gift sets.

All in all, Sephora has banned all possible means by which Chinese consumers can make a purchase on their own; but at the mean time, it’s advertising in China. Sephora said that some accounts were locked due to the purpose to control resell, but it’s actually implementing different rules online and offline. It seems that Sephora is blaming resellers, but the company itself is one of the reasons that contribute to the phenomenon. Some even argue that Sephora is hypocritical, because it wants to utilize huge purchasing power in China, but at the same time, when it’s short of supply, Asian accounts are the first to be locked with “justified reasons.[1]

It’s not suggesting that Sephora is guilty. However, the contradictions in the company’s rules do make it seem suspicious. Regardless of the fact whether Sephora is discriminating against Asians, the company obviously has a lot of PR work to do if it still wants to stable the Asian market, especially the Chinese market.

The latest update on the issue is that the promotion account which advocates Sephora and has refused to help with the sue, has contacted the management of Weibo, trying to filter some of the tweets that the person who raised the class action publicized. Obviously, this is not the best PR it can do.


The anti-Sephora Weibo account @Rise_Against_Sephora claimed that Weibo had hidden some of his tweets. In the picture, it is his conversation history with the promotion account which advocates Sephora. Actually, in one of the tweets he publicized last night, he mentioned the exact name of the promotion account – but that tweet can’t be found now.

filter 2

Another tweet just publicized by Rise_Against_Sephora, stating that his tweet was filtered again.

[1] Resource: http://www.douban.com/group/topic/66540865/

Black Monday 1987

NY Times Front Page

NY Times Front Page

We’ve been looking at the financial crisis of 2008 and seen how it impacted several facets of the economy, including the stock market. It made me want to take a look back at the market crash of 1987,  known as “Black Monday,” which is the greatest single day collapse in market history.

On the morning of October 19th, 1987, the downturn initially started in Asia before sweeping to western markets. The Dow Jones, a leading index that measures 30 large American public companies, fell 508 points — nearly 23 percent in one day. This accounted for about $500 billion in losses. Every index was crushed, though, with the S&P 500 also diminishing by about 20 percent on the day. Chaos ensued. Nervous investors tried contacting their brokers to take their money out of the market, but many were unable to get through because of the high influx of calls.

The Dow shot down 508 points on Black Monday

The Dow shot down 508 points on Black Monday

The crash was extraordinarily improbable. Professor Henry T.C. Hu of the University of Texas calculated it was a “25 standard deviation event,” which meant  “if the stock market never took a holiday from the day the earth was formed, such a decline was still unlikely.”

What made the misery all the more glaring was the run Wall Street had been on. The Dow had recently peaked in August of ’87 at 2722 points, which was an increase of more than 40 percent on the year. More confusing was the lack of a news event — like the subprime mortgages in 2008 — that would seem to trigger such a drastic fall. The week prior, the market had seen a correction that was sharp, with the Dow dropping more than 3 percent on two different days, but it was relatively inconsequential compared to what happened on the 19th.

Computers were new trading instruments in 1987 -- and many blamed them for the crash

Computers were new trading instruments in 1987 — and many blamed them for making the crash worse

Many analysts pointed to the rise in computer trading as exacerbating the problem. Program trading was relatively new at the time, and algorithms that calculated when to sell securities were triggered by the decline in share prices — which lead to a bigger crash. Today, virtually every trade is made electronically, but in the video below you can see two analysts who were less than thrilled with the technological advances the market had seen.


Class favorite Michael Lewis, who was working for Solomon Brothers back then, talked about how selling futures contributed to the hysteria.

The damage was so severe that the idea of closing the market for a day or two to “cool off” was even floated. Thankfully that didn’t happen, and the Federal Reserve pumped money into financial institutions and urged lenders to continue as if everything was normal (this sounds familiar from class). The Fed wanted to maintain liquidity and buoy investor confidence, and to a large extent this worked. The markets recovered slightly over the last two months, and closed slightly up for the year.

Still, the aftershock was felt for some time, with Wall Street not recovering to its 1987 marks until 1989. In an effort to curb a high volume of panic trades in the future, circuit breakers were put in place to pause trading and give investors time to process information before trading. Now, the New York Stock Exchange stops if the Dow falls 350 points from the previous day, or 200 points in one hour.

Oil Industry Rise Disrupts Plans For Renewable Energy

oil-derricksCalifornia is leading the rest of the nation in its push for using renewable energy, driving electric cars and installing solar panels.

But its next economic growth will most likely come from the industry known for its old-fashioned derricks sucking the crude oil out of the ground.

As Golden State is doing some soul-searching figuring out how to raise the budget and create news jobs, the oil industry is willing to fill the gap.

In recent years, new technologies developed a method called fracking, which involves blasting a mixture of water, sand and chemicals into the underground to reach previously unaccessible oil and gas shales.

The method revolutionized the way the oil is extracted allowing petroleum companies multiply their production and give a start to the unprecedented economic growth.

Since 2008, fracking boosted the oil production by 80 percent, increasing its daily amount to 11 million barrels, supplying more oil and gas than Iran, Nigeria and Kuwait combined.

Last year, for the first time in two decades, the U.S. oil export exceeded the import, challenging the world’s petroleum giants such as Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

In June, the prices on domestic oil declined to $82.60 a barrel from $115.71 marking the lowest benchmark over the last four years, according to AAA Automotive Research Center.

In the meantime, the production in California, the fourth biggest world’s consumer of oil and gas, has been on the rise.

Last year, the oil production increased by 7 percent to 199.6 million barrels a year, making it the highest hike in 25 years, according to the state Department of Conservation’s Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources.

There are several large oil deposits in California that, experts forecast, will fuel next shale boom.

The Kern River Oilfield stretches underneath the San Joaquin Valley near Bakersfield and, by some estimates, contains around 476 million barrels of oil in reserve.

Another oil deposit located near Kern River is called Monterey Shale that occupies an area of 1,752 square miles. Until this year, it was considered the largest Californian oilfield.

Monterey shaleBut recent reports filed by the federal officials revealed the shale contains only a tiny fraction of the expected amount.

Still, even by the least optimistic estimates, the deposit has 600  million of recoverable crude oil, a number large enough to keep derricks drilling within the Californian border. 

While the industry keeps pumping, it fuels the state and local economy in the form of taxes and jobs.

In 2012, the oil companies contributed $21.6 billion in state and local tax revenue and $15 billion in federal taxes, according to a report from the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation.

During the same year, the oil drillers added $18.7 billion in sales and excise taxes and contributed $113 billion in value added, which is 5.4 percent of the state GDP.

In the past seven years, the industry added 162,000 job openings to the market, which is 16,2 percent of all newly created jobs in California, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

In 2012, The Kern County’s alone employed 47,706 people.

Monterey Shale -2

Just recently, IHS reported the petroleum industry plans to contribute five million new jobs nationwide over the next 10 years.

Meanwhile, the oil industry has been gaining new proponents among policy makers.

Gov. Jerry Brown, known for his support of the renewable energy, has recently cheered for the oil drilling.

“The fossil fuel deposits in California are incredible, the potential is extraordinary,” Gov. Brown said during a renewable energy conference in Goleta. “We want to get the greenhouse gas emissions down, but we also want to keep our economy going.”

Mark Nechodom, director of Department of Conservation’s Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources and the petroleum industry’s major regulator, echoed Brown’s words in his speech at the Modesto Area Partners in Science Conference.

“It’s hard to imagine how we would rapidly reduce our use of oil without a serious distraction of the economy, your well being and quality of life,” Nechodom said.

Colin Maynard, a spokesman for the Western States Petroleum Association, the organization that spent $20 million since 2009 lobbying state legislators, said the industry’s operations are the state economy’s integral part.

“[The oil industry] provides a product that really improves life of every citizen in the region,” Maynard said.


As the state submerges in the third year of the severe drought, many environmental groups raise concerns over oil operations that they say put under risk groundwater and other  aquifers.

Some believe if the oil drilling continues to operate at the current scale, there might be long-term consequences.

“Jobs are important and there are other ways to get jobs,” Kathryn Phillips, director of the Sierra Club in Sacramento, said. “And public health is important and sustainability of environment is important. We need a functioning plant and an eco system to be able to have a strong economy.”

Phillips says in order to address environmental issues, the state needs “to keep the oil in the ground.”

“If we don’t address the climate change we’re not going to be worrying whether we have energy for moving our vehicles,” Phillips said. “We’re going to be wondering if we’re going to be able to survive.”

Besides the lasting environmental damage the state will likely have to deal with, the fall of the oil price might discourage the businesses from investing in alternative energy. With the current price of $3.01 per gallon, it might simply be costly to install solar panels and purchase electric cars in the future than rely on the cheap energy coming from the same old oil derricks.