by Charles Hugh Smith
Of Two Minds
Given the presumed 17% expansion of the global economy since 2009, the tiny increases in production could not possibly flood the world in oil unless demand has cratered.
The term Black Swan shows up in all sorts of discussions, but what does it actually mean? Though the term has roots stretching back to the 16th century, today it refers to author Nassim Taleb’s meaning as defined in his books, Fooled by Randomness: The Hidden Role of Chance in Life and in the Markets and The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable:
“First, it is an outlier, as it lies outside the realm of regular expectations, because nothing in the past can convincingly point to its possibility. Second, it carries an extreme ‘impact’. Third, in spite of its outlier status, human nature makes us concoct explanations for its occurrence after the fact, making it explainable and predictable.”
Simply put, black swans are undirected and unpredicted. The Wikipedia entry lists three criteria based on Taleb’s work: