Wonders are many, and none is more wonderful than Man.
Look at him crossing the cruel sea, riding the very waves that used to engulf him.
Six hundred metres down, behold countless acres of natural gas beneath the sea floor, now measured and piped ashore thanks to his wind-swift thinking and unmatched dexterity. Man’s boundless energy…creates more energy.

So burn, baby, burn. And light up the whole town. Stock in oil and gas company Total (NYSE: TOT) fell by 1.36% ($0.59) on Monday 8 February after the company announced that the Laggan-Tormore field, West of Shetland, had begun producing gas condensate at a rate equivalent to 90,000 barrels of oil per day. The field utilises unmanned under-sea extraction equipment in conjunction with pipelines extending hundreds of miles.

All manner of maladies have succumbed to Man’s unwanted attentions (even cancer is pencilled next on the list). Of those afflictions that remain, however, perhaps the most injurious is Man’s Incredulity To Man. He cannot now bring himself to believe in his own ingenuity. Instead of defining himself by the progress he has made for himself, by the success he has made of himself, our Man of today tends to write down his own efforts. He undercuts himself for fear of breaching the iron law of overreach, recently re-cast after 300 years in abeyance.

The paradox of share prices falling just as the capacity for increased production is confirmed, should be seen as a by-product of Man’s Incredulity To Man rather than a simple of function of energy supply and demand. But note nonetheless how far our collective fortune has risen since the Stone Age of Shetland’s earliest settlement, up to 6000 years before the new gas plant opened there last week.

How wondrous that financial fortunes are prone to collapse when the wonder that is Man only continues to rise.