July 29, 2015

Aubrey McClendon's greed coming to fruition

The post-McClendon Chesapeake Energy looks like a tempting "buy" target precisely because it's still dealing with an overexploration hangover. Of course, as we speak, he's gone from inflating one bubble to another, trying to inflate the spreadsheets of American Energy Partners.

Is he one of the brashest people in a brash energy world? Yes. One of the most creative? Hell, no. 

One of the most "creative"? Of course. If I were an investor, I wouldn't give him a fucking dime, ignoring the allegation that he stole Chesapeake trade secrets.

McClendon's lucky that people don't generally understand the realities of shale gas, and that he either doesn't understand them himself, or he's a very good bullshitter.

Fracked natural gas wells in shale formations come online like the Spindletop oil well gusher of 1901. Then they decline in a dizzying bell curve just 3 years or so later. And, the fracking process doesn't get out that much more gas than otherwise expected.

Oh, fracking does stimulate overall production somewhat. But the biggie is that it rapidly increases the rate of production.

McClendon himself didn't appear to understand this in his Chesapeake salad days. I think he DID understand that in his post-salad days though, and he realized he was SOL unless he could get investors to back what had become a Ponzi scheme.

That said, he had a theoretically clean slate at AEP. And now he's running a Ponzi scheme from ground zero. And, runs twice as many incorporation shell games as the typical energy company or the typical media group.

And, he ripped off the city of Seattle seven years ago, too.

Back to Chesapeake, though.

It either didn't learn its lessons, post-McClendon, or else it's leading lights have decided to carry on the Ponzi scheme on their own. In either case, no sympathy here.

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