What's this Blog About?

Politics in Wisconsin as they roll up to every level... and some other thoughts that may cross my mind are explored here from my lefty point of view. My values shape my opinions. You'll always find them in here. Let's have some fun exploring why Liberal values are American values!

Your comments are both welcome and encouraged!
(The watercolor is called Magnolia Tree for Momma, by Audrey Crawford)

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Afghan Opium Production and the DJIA

Unfortunately, it's hard to get this chart really readable on the Blogger site(if you click on it, it does get a little easier to read), but the most important thing to make clear is that the blue line is the Dow Jones Industrial Average from 1993 to present taken on the last trading day of the year annually, the orange line is the UN-NOC estimate of production yield in mega-tons of opium out of Afghanistan annually, and the pink line is the US estimate of the same up until 2003 when they stopped posting the data on the State Dept website and took down the data that had been previously public information.

I've been tracking this since around 2002 for no particular reason except that I was interested in the stories of the Taliban nearly eradicating opium production in Afghanistan prior to 911 and the sudden increase in production after we kicked them out and then, found the State Dept stats and they reminded me of the DJIA, so one boring afternoon, I decided to plot them both on the same graph. What amazes me is the similarity of the lines visually. I keep tracking these two statistics and have decided for no real reason, to publish my research. I have no idea what this means... I have many theories, but none that I am comfortable publishing. I'm even a little freaked out about putting this out, but as a firm believer in my right to Free Speech, I have decided that the information while perhaps not relevant to anything, is in the least accurate, well sourced, and interesting, and therefore, worthy of public viewing.

I have a feeling conspiracy theorists will have a field day with this, but again, I make no claim to know what this means. I am interested in my reader's opinions and if anyone wants a copy of the full excel file, I'd be happy to email it to you.


^ http://www.state.gov/g/inl/rls/nrcrpt/2002/html/17947.htm -- Information was found at this web address. All US information has been removed from the US Dept of State website with no explanation and I did not save the original reports (something I've corrected withthe UN report now included in the figures.
*Potential Yield estimate from the U.S. White House; UN estimate is approx. 3,600 metric tons
**Potential Yield estimate of production thru Sept 2002 based on the 2002 number divided by two for charting purposes
***Close First trading day of December annually unless otherwise noted
87% of the world's opium production in 2004 and 2005 came from Afghanistan eradication efforts led to an estimated 5% reduction in opium production from 2004 to 2005, but the reason for lower amounts of final product are believed to be on the processing and crow yield side more than the growth side of production.
2006 figures so far are estimated to be at or above the levels in 2006 depending on whether or not any eradication efforts are carried out or successful (coincidentally, the stock market is also expected to rise during the year). http://www.unodc.org/pdf/research/Afg_RAS_2006.pdf

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