Wednesday, August 12, 2020


News Links, August 13, 2020

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards/global cooling/deflationary collapse ##
Russian Economy Shrunk 8.5% in Second Quarter – Official Data

## War on cash/cashless society/cryptocurrencies ##
Where Cash is Still King

## Airline death spiral ##
Even with nearly empty flights, airport quarantine stations stretched to the limit (Japan)

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
The Lion & the Dragon: Understanding the New Iran-China Strategic Partnership
After decades of US neglect of electronic warfare – while Russia and China pulled ahead – Army soldiers are just months away from getting their hands on two new and long-awaited long-range jammers.

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Lebanon's government resignation is 'no panacea' as angry protests continue

## Energy/resources ##
Operator: 460 tons of leaked oil recovered
A Japanese company that operates a cargo ship that ran aground off Mauritius says nearly half of the oil the vessel is believed to have leaked in the Indian Ocean has been collected.
• Coronavirus

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
A Biden Presidency Will Be as Confused and Belligerent as Trump's
There is no need for Moscow or Beijing to lift a finger. All they need to do is sit back and laugh at the shambles.                            

## Propaganda/censorship/fake news/alternative facts ##
Twitter spreads paid US gov't propaganda while falsely claiming it bans state media ads
Twitter says it bans ads from state-affiliated media outlets. However, US government propaganda organs like Voice of America's VOA Persian pay the social media corporation huge sums of money to spread disinformation against Iran and other foreign adversaries.
TikTok and the War on China
Every charge that Trump and his minions make against Chinese companies is true for US corporations, which have been spying on Americans and the rest of the world for decades.

Tuesday, August 11, 2020


News Links, August 12, 2020

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards/global cooling/deflationary collapse ##
Singapore's economic contraction in the second quarter was worse than initial estimates
Chinese firms that fail U.S. accounting standards to be delisted as of 2022: Mnuchin

## Cut, baby, cut! ##
Debenhams to cut 2,500 more jobs amid pandemic

## Airline death spiral ##
No, Americans Aren't Suddenly Flying Again, Despite What the Media Said Today to Boost Stocks of Airlines and Boeing
But another $25-billion taxpayer bailout is tucked into the stimulus package. The stock market loves bailouts and hates the effects of capitalism.
This Airline Bailout-Acquisition Doesn't Pass the Smell Test
IAG, owner of British Airways and of Spain's top two airlines, seeks bailout from Spain to buy Spain's #3 airline for a near-monopoly in Spain. The family that owns the airline seeks that bailout too.

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
New Report Reveals US Special Forces Active in 22 African Countries
The US has roughly 6,000 military personnel scattered throughout the continent with military attachés outnumbering diplomats in many embassies across Africa.
The energy profit ratios of biofuels are too low to support industrial societies, so using fossil fuels to produce biofuels, and mixing them into petroleum products makes no sense. It's all about making money for growers of "energy crops" and for biofuel makers. And fuel consumers foot the bill. -- RF
Russia's Oil Product Exports To The U.S. Jump To 16-Year High
• Coronavirus

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
"A kind of coup": How the U.S. Failed at Its Foreign Policy Toward Venezuela
The Filthy Hypocrisy of America's "Clean" China-Free Internet
The Trump administration wants to keep other countries from weaponizing technology the way the U.S. and its allies already have.
More linear extrapolation. It's like saying that the Earth will have 9 billion humans. Ain't gonna happen. -- RF

## China ##

Monday, August 10, 2020


News Links, August 11, 2020

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards/global cooling/deflationary collapse ##
Short on money, cities around the world try making their own
Fans of "complementary currency" are betting that this Depression-era idea for keeping towns alive by printing local money can prove its worth as pandemic relief
'We can't run a business in a dead planet': CEOs plan to prioritize green issues post-coronavirus
But the sheer number of humans, plus the desire of businesses and governments to have ever more consumers and taxpayers consuming ever more goods and services and paying ever more taxes, militate against a green future. -- RF
Gold is starting to take the place of big tech - Mohamed A. El-Erian

## Airline death spiral ##
TSA: July air travel down 75% from 2019, but gun confiscation rates triple

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Esper Says There Will Be Less Than 5,000 US Troops in Afghanistan by November
Germany Pullout: Esper Says Troops are Moving Closer to Russia
DoD Details $11B For COVID Costs, Warns 'At Least One' Shipyard May Close
Spacepower Is 'Catastrophically Decisive' In War: New Space Force Doctrine
U.S. hypersonic weapon system completes second test on B-52 Stratofortress
China's jets fly in Taiwan Strait amid high-level U.S. visit

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Secret Service escorts Trump from briefing room after shooting outside White House
Downtown Chicago under lockdown in wake of looting, violent unrest
At least 100 people were arrested as looting and violence overtook the streets.
Protests break out across Belarus following contested election as police crack down on demonstrators

## Energy/resources ##
Occidental posts bigger-than-expected loss as pandemic slams oil prices
Defiant Erdogan Says Turkey Has Resumed Mediterranean Gas Exploration & Drilling

## Got food? ##
The onion salmonella outbreak grows. More recalls from Walmart, Kroger, Publix, H-E-B
U.S. farmers leave fields fallow as COVID-19 wrecks crop prospects

## Environment/health ##
Study: High levels of mercury, plastic toxins found in stranded whales, dolphins
It's a low-key article, but the findings are more than worrisome. Expect governments to do nothing. -- RF
India tea plantation landslide death toll rises to 43
New Zealand's Southern Alps glacier melt has doubled
World's most pristine tropical forests remain vulnerable to deforestation
• Coronavirus
'Vast' gap in funding needed to fight the coronavirus, WHO warns
We Need to Change Our COVID-19 Strategy
New U.S. COVID-19 cases under 50,000 for the first time in a week

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
Leaked Documents Reveal What TikTok Shares with Authorities — in the U.S.
President Donald Trump's executive order banning Americans from using TikTok is driven by concerns that the company might hand over user data to Chinese authorities. Recently hacked police documents reveal the nature of the company's relationship to law enforcement — not in China but in the United States.
Who profits from the Beirut blast? (Pepe Escobar)
Belarus, Pulling Bridges, MI6 And Russiagate
Denmark angry at Google censorship of some Danish content, seeks talks
Russia fines Google for not blocking banned content: Ifax
The Spies Who Hijacked America
As a doctoral candidate at Cambridge working under "FBI Informant" Stefan Halper, I had a front-row seat for Russiagate

## Propaganda/censorship/fake news/alternative facts ##
As Bolivian Regime Delays Elections a Third Time, Media Continue to Ignore Coup

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
America's Death March (Chris Hedges)
Regardless of the outcome, the U.S. election will not stop the rise of hyper-nationalism, crisis cults and other signs of an empire's terminal decline.
The Economy Is Mortally Wounded

## Japan ##
Japan to send disaster relief team to Mauritius over freighter's fuel leakage
Nagasaki Mayor Stresses the Importance of Arms Control
Tokyo reports 197 new virus infections; nationwide total tops 50,000
Anti-mask group in Tokyo slammed for 'cluster festival'

## China ##
Hong Kong police arrest media tycoon under new security law
'China sympathisers': a new Red Scare stalks Australian businesses
Two people dead from bubonic plague in China, authorities say
China sanctions U.S. lawmakers, non-profit leaders over Hong Kong

## UK ##
UK consumer lending will plummet during 2020, say forecasts
Shelf life of 21 days or more could save red meat waste, say UK industry bodies
UK to plunge into deepest slump on record with worst GDP drop of G7
Coronavirus: Students 'selling clothes to pay rent'

## US ##
'I can't afford tuition': College students face financial strains, health concerns from pandemic ahead of fall semester
Millions of Americans are worried they won't be able to make even the minimum payments on their credit cards.
Mall owner Simon Property revenue disappoints as pandemic cuts shopping days
U.S. deficit "more than tripled" because of coronavirus rescue spending, report says
U.S. Oilfield Services Job Losses Accelerate
Millennials Screwed Again, This Time on Unemployment
80 million masks, 8,800 ventilators: How New York is spending $5B to fight COVID-19
A woman claiming to be from the 'Freedom To Breathe Agency' filmed telling a grocery employee that she could face legal action for making people wear face masks
A 17-year-old high school student developed an app that records your interaction with police when you're pulled over
As Biden Mulls VP Pick, Pundits Vie for Most Substance-Free Forecast
TSA 'alarmed' by surge in firearm seizures at U.S. airports in July

Sunday, August 09, 2020


News Links, August 10, 2020

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards/global cooling/deflationary collapse ##
Trump Reimposes Canadian Aluminum Import Tariff to Stem 'Flood'
The International Monetary Fund said on Sunday it was willing to redouble efforts to help Lebanon after the devastating blast that hit Beirut, but said all of the country's institutions needed to show willingness to carry out reforms.
Bite the Bullet or Extend & Pretend? Unemployment in Europe
45 million people have been furloughed in Germany, the UK, France, Italy, and Spain, but the "unemployment" rate barely budged because furloughs don't count. Creating government-subsidized zombie companies & zombie jobs?
The survey quoted one anonymous employee as saying that the message was, "Don't rock the boat with Boeing."

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Russia Warns It Will View All Incoming Missiles as Nuclear
Policy is a response to US interest in long-range conventional missiles
US fails to build regional coalition against China
Southeast Asian countries give a tepid response to Pompeo's bid for a united effort in the South China Sea

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Portland protesters set police building on fire and clash with authorities
Situation declared a riot as police use flashbang munitions and smoke canisters to force hundreds away
Thai protesters demand the release of anti-government activists

## Energy/resources ##

## Environment/health ##
Germany and France quit WHO reform talks amid tension with Washington - sources
France and Germany have quit talks on reforming the World Health Organization in frustration at attempts by the United States to lead the negotiations, despite its decision to leave the WHO, three officials told Reuters.
New Mexico man in his 20s dies of septicemic plague
Mauritius declares state of emergency as wrecked ship leaks oil into ocean
Bangladesh among global hotspots of series of floods: Study
Bangladesh is one of the hotspots of series of floods in the world, a latest study says, noting that 250 million coastal dwellers will face rising floods globally.
• Coronavirus
U.S. tops 5 million coronavirus cases as outbreak threatens America's Midwest
The United States has the worst Covid-19 outbreak in the world with more than 5 million cases, according to Johns Hopkins University data.
55% of coronavirus patients still have neurological problems three months later: study
Mounting evidence suggests COVID-19 could cause brain damage in adults and kids

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
Report: Hundreds of apps have hidden tracking software used by US government
A new report exposes how a federal contractor secretly puts government tracking software into hundreds of mobile apps.
What's interesting about this report, however, is that it comes just a few days after the U.S. Government warned military personal and those in the intelligence community to greatly limit the use of location services on their mobile devices to prevent foreign government from using such data in their own counter-intelligence operations.
One more piece of evidence showing that in truth Chinese society is the model. -- RF
Bob Parry on Brent Scowcroft (On the sorry state of US journalism)
Internet outages have seen major increase during pandemic
Over 60% rise in outages reported as businesses struggle for connection.

## Propaganda/censorship/fake news/alternative facts ##
US Intelligence: If Trump Wins Russia Did It, If Biden Wins It Was China And Iran
Biden intervened to keep Israel 'occupation' out of Democratic platform
Before presumptive presidential candidate stepped in, progressives had secured agreement to include word for the first time in party manifesto

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
It's Time To Position For The Endgame
There's no telling when the bottom will fall out. Do you have your ducks lined up? -- RF

## Japan ##
Japan's climate change efforts hindered by biased business lobby: study
Japan to ban unauthorized drone flights over 15 U.S. military sites
Tokyo governor urges citizens not to travel
Yasukuni Shrine is considered a symbol of Japan's past militarism, particularly in China and South Korea, because it honors Class-A war criminals along with Japan's war dead.
Japan Braces for Chinese Ships near Senkakus in Fishing Season

## China ##
Western media's favorite Hong Kong 'freedom struggle writer' is American ex-Amnesty staffer in yellowface
A prominent Hong Kong pundit and anti-China activist named Kong Tsung-gan has become a go-to source for Western media. An investigation by The Grayzone confirms Kong as a fake identity employed by an American teacher who's a ubiquitous figure at local protests.
China food security: there's no crisis, but supply risks are growing as farmers hoard grains
Is Donald Trump USA's First Socialist President? Leading Analyst Thinks So
Celebrated author and risk analyst Nassim Taleb believes there would be wide-ranging changes in the way world functions, due to COVID-19.

Friday, August 07, 2020


News Links, August 8, 2020

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards/global cooling/deflationary collapse ##
U.S. Borrowing Breaks Fresh Records, Shifting Focus to Fed
Barbarous relic: US Dollar Devalues by 99% vs Gold in 100 Years—Gold Price Crosses $2,067
Gold price nearing $2,100 as bulls keep foot on the gas
Huge Spike in Long-Term Unemployment (US)
Brazil's biggest lenders let clients delay $44 billion in payments
Brazil's top four listed lenders are giving months-long extensions for consumers and companies to repay 235 billion reais ($43.98 billion) in outstanding loans, a move to give financially squeezed borrowers breathing room.
Russia-China "Dedollarization" Reaches "Breakthrough Moment" As Countries Ditch Greenback For Bilateral Trade

## Cut, baby, cut! ##
Job cuts announced by U.S. companies jump 54% in July: report

## War on cash/cashless society/cryptocurrencies ##
China's biggest banks are testing the digital yuan 'on a large scale': report

## Airline death spiral ##
Anger rises as British Airways cuts start to bite
Delta urges 3,000 flight attendants to take unpaid leave, shorter schedules to avoid furloughs
Jet Fuel Demand Still Has A Long Way To Recovery

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Egypt flouts sanctions as Russian Su-35 fighters arrive
'Long-range Su-35 fighter jets would give the Egyptian army air superiority, which is why the US strongly objected'
Iran Says US, Israel Are Nuclear 'Threat' to Region
Marines insist 'we are not drawing down' amid changes to Norway rotations
Catalan parliament passes motion against monarchy
After 20 years, Army logistics support vessels finally leave the Middle East
China, US militaries in crunch talks to avoid conflicts in Taiwan and South China Sea

## Migrants/refugees ##
MPs to investigate surge in migrants crossing Channel in small boats

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Protesters try to block detention of Polish LGBT activist
Portland protesters cause mayhem again, police officer hurt

## Energy/resources ##
America shoots itself in the foot with its own sanctions. -- RF
U.S. Shale Remains In Survival Mode For Another Year
• Coronavirus

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
Disbelief as Trump Appoints Disgraced Iran-Contra Criminal Elliott Abrams as Iran Envoy
Activists, the UN, and even mainstream news outlets expressed dismay at the Trump administration's decision to appoint regime-change champion Elliot Abrahams to the role of Special Representative for Iran.

## China ##

## UK ##
Some people returned to work, but 1.64 million newly-out-of-work people filed for state or federal unemployment insurance. Labor market at essentially the same level of terribleness for months.
No "V-shaped" recovery (Charts galore)

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