Good morning. Here’s your Daily Situational Awareness briefing for Thursday, 12 August 2021. You can receive this daily intel brief via email by signing up at

  • Situational Awareness
  • States prepare for court
  • Biden asks for gas
  • Debt default betting
  • New ICE rules for victims
  • Major port shutting down


You can watch today’s Daily SA briefing on YouTube (click the box above).

SHUTDOWN: President Biden and Congressional Democrats believe their debt limit strategy will succeed. By not including the language in yesterday’s budget bill, Republicans will be forced to support an increase or shutdown the government in late October. Senate Minority Leader McConnell (R-KY) said 46 Senators will not increase the debt limit if the “human infrastructure” package succeeds. (Analyst Comment: Democrats want a new debt agreement as continuing resolutions would maintain many Trump-era spending policies. Republicans are seeking leverage by blaming a potential shutdown on the party in power. Another round of government shutdowns communicates to the world, America is in decline. – D.M.)
NINGBO: All operations at China’s Ningbo Meidong Container Terminal have been suspended. An outbreak of COVID-19 is credited with eliminating 20% of the port’s capacity. Ningbo is the third-largest container port in the world, dwarfing the Yantian closure in June. Cargo vessel operators are warning customers of expected delays as ocean freight remains stressed. The closure occurred for a single positive test, the Chinese government and many Southeast Asian countries are closing facilities for similar reasons. (AC: Logistics experts are warning of continued disruptions in the fall and winter as forced closures cause immediate impacts in moving goods around the globe. – D.M.)
CALIFORNIA: California now requires all teachers and school staff be vaccinated or agree to regular testing. The move follows weeks of public lobbying by teacher’s unions to require vaccination for adults in schools. Some states like Florida, Texas, South Carolina, Oklahoma, Iowa, and Utah banned local requirements for masking or vaccination, setting up a series of legal challenges across the nation. The policy conflicts may invoke federal action as unions are lobbying actively for intervention. (AC: The President singled out Florida and said his administration is looking into legal options to overturn mask mandate bans. Previously, the White House acknowledged that it didn’t have Constitutional authority to extend the eviction moratorium but did it anyway. – D.M.)
GAS: In an appeal to OPEC+, President Biden asked the oil producing nations to increase their production to reduce fuel prices in the United States. OPEC+ will meet at the beginning of September to consider raising output from 5.8 million barrels per day to 6.2 million. President Biden maintains the U.S. will be “decarbonized” by 2050. (AC: The increased fuel prices are leading some nations, like Russia, to propose stopping gasoline exports to stabilize domestic prices. The cancelled Keystone XL pipeline would have delivered 630,000 barrels per day from Canada. – D.M.)
IMMIGRATION: U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) are suspending deportations for illegal immigrants who become victims of a crime. In directive release 11005.3, the agency said they will take a “victims centered approach” and allow non-citizens access to legal resources. If a non-citizen is identified as the victim of a crime, but is not receiving legal assistance, ICE officers should “exercise discretion, including but not limited to release from detention.” (AC: The change includes trafficked persons, accounting for a substantial number of the non-citizen population which ICE is encouraged to release. This non-interference and legal support expands the administrative pathway for the eventual legalization for illegal immigrants. – D.M.)
HURRICANE SEASON: Tropical Depression Fred is expected to bring rains to Florida by Friday. The National Hurricane Center expects flooding and rapid river rises across southern Florida and tropical storm conditions in the Keys throughout the weekend.

In today’s Early Warning briefing, Mike has an update on the housing bubble, runaway inflation, an interesting take on the potential for a 1929-style market crash. Upgrade your Situational Awareness to Early Warning here: