Wednesday, March 04, 2015


News Links, March 5, 2015

I'm in the process of relocating, and will be on a reduced schedule for the rest of March. -- RF

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
The Draghi Derangement: $2 Trillion Euro Government Bonds Trading At Negative Yield
Investor survey shows 38 percent chance of euro zone break-up in 12 months
UK retreat from investment banking gathers pace
Britain's retreat from investment banking is set to accelerate as Royal Bank of Scotland aims to slash as many as 14,000 jobs in the sector and Barclays' chief executive says he has limited patience with the business.
The Global War On Pensioners
I've said repeatedly that "retirement" is becoming an endangered species. Do you believe me now? -- RF
Ukraine Hikes Rate to 30%, Requires Corporations to Sell 75% of Foreign Currency Earnings; Miners Not Paid For 3 Months
Stock Market Bubble: Wall Street Is Ecstatic As The NASDAQ Closes Above 5000
Target to cut thousands of jobs as part of $2B restructuring
RBS could cut 14,000 staff in retreat from US and Asia
Cut, baby, cut! -- RF
Obvious Lessons Obviously Not Learned: Zero Down Payments Are Back!
Spain using Facebook to Hunt for Taxes
India's RBI Cuts Interest Rate By 25 Basis Points
China Has Announced Plans For A 'World Currency'
Only mass default will end the world's addiction to debt
Of course mass default is inevitable, but it won't cure the world's addiction to debt. Unless the economic system is totally remodeled, the cycle will just begin anew. -- RF
U.S. government is authorized to rig all markets in secret, GATA secretary tells KWN

## Airline Death Spiral ##
Airline survey: Travelers oppose airport fee hike
Travelers overwhelmingly oppose increasing fees on airline tickets that help pay for airport improvements, according to an airline survey released Tuesday.
Loss-hit national carrier Air India to shut offices in Cairo and Tehran
U.S. airlines are growing without adding airplanes
How? By putting more seats in their airplanes, replacing smaller airplanes with bigger airplanes or flying their airplanes more often or on longer trips — efficient ways for the carriers to boost productivity, even if coach passengers may feel even more squeezed.
Thailand's Nok Air posts net loss for 2014
Airlines are at it again, changing frequent-flier programs

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Impotent Western Sanctions Fail To Disrupt Russian Energy Exports
Western Leaders Hint At More Russian Sanctions Over Ukraine
Islamic State: Iraq Battle Against ISIS For Tikrit Led By Iran-Backed Shiite Militia Forces
US on sidelines of key Iraqi battle against IS
Iranian-backed Shiite militias and Sunni tribes have joined Iraq's military in a major operation to retake Saddam Hussein's hometown from the Islamic State group, while the U.S.-led coalition has remained on the sidelines.
US govt issues logistics support tender for 300 military personnel in Ukraine
In Face Of "Russian Aggression," US Forces May Expand Military Operations Across Eastern Europe
Between Casualties and Desertion, Afghan Military Shrinking Fast
US Officials Dismiss Netanyahu's 'Impossible' Iran Deal
Obama says Iran must halt key nuclear work for at least a decade
Russian bombers disrupted planes in Irish airspace
5 Surprising Ways Iran is better than Israel
Israeli Naval Gunboats Continue to Target Gaza Fishermen Offshore
Cost for U.S. Weapons Programs Increased by $27 Billion Last Year

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
450 killed in China's Xinjiang last year, mostly Uighurs: group

## Energy/resources ##
Shale Cycle Busts Out a Pair of Zeros
Two of the most leveraged companies in the energy space have recently been downgraded by separate analysts to zero, a potential death sentence. Believe me, in this second phase of restructurings and outright failures, this is only the beginning.
Nabors cuts nearly 3,500 jobs, more cuts could be on the way
On and offshore drilling giant Nabors Industries announced Tuesday the company has cut 12 percent of its workforce as a result of rig losses due to lower oil prices.
Industry desperate for solution to energy crisis (Ghana)
Industry operators in the country are desperately seeking solutions to combat the adverse impact of the worsening power crisis on their businesses.

## Got food? ##
Yields of key cassava crop not keeping pace with Africa population growth
Yields of cassava, a key crop feeding millions of people across Africa, are not keeping pace with population growth despite its tolerance for climate change, a leading scientist said.

## Environment/health ##
Second Los Angeles hospital reports 'superbug' infections
Satellite data suggests forest loss is accelerating
Satellite images suggest tropical forests from the Amazon to the Philippines are disappearing at a far more rapid pace than previously thought, a University of Maryland team of forest researchers say.
Scientists question rush to build Nicaragua canal
An international consortium of environmental scientists -- featuring leading researchers from 18 institutions in the United States and Central and South America -- have voiced their opposition to the Nicaragua Interoceanic Grand Canal and the haste with which the project has been initiated.

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
Clinton's E-Mail System Built For Privacy Though Not Security
A week before becoming Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton set up a private e-mail system that gave her a high level of control over communications, including the ability to erase messages completely, according to security experts who have examined Internet records.
AVG's Invisibility Glasses Will Protect You against Facial Recognition Tech
Telling Scary Stories about Iran
Israel has a large, sophisticated and undeclared nuclear arsenal, but Prime Minister Netanyahu told scary stories to a rapt U.S. Congress entranced by his warnings about the chance that Iran might consider building one bomb a decade from now, a double standard if there ever was one.
Netanyahu's False Narrative
As members of the U.S. Congress bobbed up and down with applause, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu spun a tale of brave little Israel fretting about its survival, but he left out the fact that Israel has a large arsenal of nuclear weapons and has often been the one to invade its neighbors.

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
What's America's Fragility Score?
By this measure, the U.S. scores very poorly: 4 out of a possible 5 on the Fragility Index.
That the suburbs would eventually turn into slums was predicted. A major factor behind this reverse is net energy decline. Maintaining far-flung suburbs is easy when you have plenty of cheap energy. Net energy decline is forcing urban functions to pull back into city core areas, which perforce means decreasing affluence for suburbs. It's only natural that people will go where the energy concentrates. -- RF

## Japan ##
With a population that's been shrinking for the past six years and annual debt servicing costs that are bigger than New Zealand's gross domestic product, the world's third-largest economy is quite simply running out of people who can pick up the tab.
Japan court battles could delay nuclear restarts further
It's a deal with the devil. -- RF
Concerns about darker Hampshire streets after decision
THOUSANDS of street lamps on residential roads are to be dimmed even further at night to save money.
Scottish councils pile up record debt
Scotland's local councils have amassed a record amount of debt of nearly £15bn after borrowing billions of pounds to help survive heavy budget cuts from the Scottish government.

## US ##
The Unnerving Thing Wells Fargo Just Said About the Auto Boom
Banks and subprime-focused specialty lenders convert these loans into structured securities, many of which carry triple-A ratings.

And finally...
Goldfish-swallowing Briton banned from owning fish

Monday, March 02, 2015


News Links, March 3, 2015

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
World's Largest Container-Shipper Warns Global Trade Is Slowing Down
Austria "Bad Bank" Goes Bad, $8.5 Billion "Bail-In" Underway
Greece will not seek another bailout, prime minister says
As Greek Default Fears Return, Government Considers "Borrowing" Pensions To Repay IMF
Greece Accuses Spain and Portugal of Conspiracy; 3rd Greece Bailout Discussion Under Way for €30-50 Billion
Theater Of The Absurd: Spain To Provide 14% Of Funds For Third Greek Bailout
Australian coal industry takes another step closer to the abyss
The downturn in the Australian coal industry has deepened, with three major mining companies warning on Friday that more jobs will be cut, mines will close and assets will be written down to a shadow of their former value.
Australia's Mining Bust Turns Towns Into Ghost Towns; Expect Interest Rate "Shock and Awe"
The boom is about to go bust (Australia)
Asset bubbles in shares and property could burst in the next six to 18 months, according to one of the country's more bearish investment experts, who is warning baby boomers that their retirement savings are at risk.
PDAC 2015: Optimism clashes with reality on day one of conference
The annual Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) conference kicked off in Toronto on Sunday. Not surprisingly, the mood on the conference floor was a little subdued as metal prices continue to slump, financing dollars remain scarce, and the S&P/TSX Venture Composite Index trades near an all-time low.
Chinese Factory Gauge Shows Weakness That Spurred Rate Cut
More Flash Crashes To Come As Shadow Banking Liquidity Collapses
The Draghi Derangement: $1.9 Trillion Euro Government Bonds Trading At Negative Yield
Crunch Time for the Global Corporatocracy
Southeast Asia's impending pain: 'State-financed' consumer spending hits government bottom lines
Governments in some major Southeast Asian nations are struggling with hefty bills run up by spending to encourage consumption.

## Airline Death Spiral ##
Passengers fly into a rage over airlines' antics (KSA)
Budget 2015: No major relief for struggling aviation sector, say experts (India)
Delayed American Airlines flight at Dallas/Fort Worth left passengers stuck on plane for nine hours
Passengers trapped aboard an American Airlines flight at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport on Friday cursed, kicked seats and raided the liquor cabinet in protest of their grueling delay.
Iran's airline passengers are mad and aren't taking it anymore
Businesses are feeling sting of airport cutbacks
Fewer direct flights and smaller planes mean less room for cargo, more headaches
Airplane meal industry hasn't recovered from Sept. 11
A Recent History of Airline Fleet Groundings
Southwest maintenance glitch shows complexity of inspections
The episode illustrated the difficulties tracking inspections and conducting maintenance on complex modern aircraft.

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Asia piracy cases rise 22% on year to hit 10-year high in 2014: ReCAAP
The number of piracy and armed robbery cases against ships in Asia increased 22% year on year to hit a 10-year of 183 last year, anti-piracy watchdog ReCAAP said in its annual report released earlier this week.
Dismantle NATO Now—-It's A Relic That's A Hotbed For Warmongers
Gaza Rebuild Effort Could Take 100 Years: Oxfam
Obama, Netanyahu on collision course 6 years in the making
U.S.-Israel ties fraying over Netanyahu speech, Iran talks
Iran Nuclear Deal: Feinstein Calls Netanyahu's Position On Iran Talks 'Arrogant'
Obama Ready To Veto Bill Giving Congress Say On Iranian Nuclear Negotiations
German Police Detain Several, Arrest 1 In Bremen, Following Islamist Terror Threat
DARPA Offers $4 Million For An Unmanned Surveillance System To Monitor The Arctic
Gorbachev: Killing Could Have Been A Provocation, Aimed At "Destabilizing The Situation In The Country, At Heightening Confrontation" With The West
Who killed Boris Nemtsov - and why?
UAE is a Backdoor for US-NATO Weaponry Supplies to Kiev - Experts
Pentagon Scraps Spring Attack on Mosul; Iraqi Troops Not Ready
US-Backed Syrian Rebel Group Dissolves After Losing Hundreds Of Men In Battle
Russian Navy Will Get 50 New Ships This Year, Including Nuclear Submarines, Surface Warships, Says Admiral
Massive Iraqi assault begins to retake Tikrit from Islamic State
Catalonia prepares to set up own foreign missions, tax system amid independence drive
Saudi Eastern Fleet Request Advances
A second letter of request (LoR) from the Saudi government detailing requirements for the Eastern Fleet replacement program was delivered to the US Navy in February, barely a month after an initial request was sent, according to sources here at the International Defence Exposition show.
Playing Chicken with Nuclear War
U.S.-Russian tensions keep escalating – now surrounding the murder of Russian opposition figure Boris Nemtsov – yet almost no one on the American side seems to worry about the possibility that the tough-guy rhetoric and proxy war in Ukraine might risk a nuclear conflagration.

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Boko Haram Protest in Cameroon Draws Thousands As Fighting Intensifies And Nigerian Elections Approach
Riot police called in as anti-Muslim rally in England boils over
Hong Kong Police Use Pepper Spray As Protests Against Chinese Shoppers Turns Ugly
Boris Nemtsov Murder: Tens Of Thousands Gather To Mourn And March In Moscow
Wisconsinites Rally to Stop 'Right-to-Work' Bill
As Netanyahu Heads to DC, CodePink Tries to Shut Down AIPAC

## Energy/resources ##
Power Shortages Challenge Eskom, Force Load Shedding in South Africa
In a media presentation, CEO Tshediso Matona explained that Eskom's reserve margin is very low and that the company does not currently have enough capacity to meet demand. The situation has necessitated planned, controlled, and rotational load shedding to protect the power system from a total countrywide blackout.
Apple buying a third of world's gold to meet demand for iWatch
Most French Nuclear Plants 'Should Be Shut Down' Over Drone Threat
"You don't need massive amounts of force to allow a nuclear plant to go into instability. The plant has enough energy to destroy itself. Drones can be used to tickle the plant into instability."
Exelon-backed bill seeks $2 more a month for nuclear plants
Cheap Oil Threatens Debt Squeeze for Smaller UK North Sea Producers
Small and mid-sized independent oil producers in the British North Sea could face a financing squeeze this year as banks cut lending linked to the value of oil reserves, following last year's oil price sell off.
Bulgaria scraps incentives for new renewable energy installations
Bulgaria's parliament scrapped preferential prices for new renewable energy installations on Thursday as the country is struggling to cut deficits in the energy sector and keep a lid on consumers' utility bills.
Eclipse of the Sun has European solar power producers worried
Hundreds of millions of Europeans will experience a solar eclipse ranging from 40% to 97% obscuration on March 20th. Iceland will have a total blackout. The solar power industry is very concerned about how it will manage when an estimated 35,000 MW of electricity vanishes from the system, then comes surging back two hours later.
US Will Never Gain Oil Market Crown Says IEA Head
No matter how much oil the United States produces over the next few years, it will never become the next Saudi Arabia in the global oil market, according to Fatih Birol, the new executive director of the International Energy Agency (IEA). What's especially interesting about this forecast is that it directly contradicts what Birol said only three months ago, and he gave no explanation for his change of mind.
This Is Why The EU Energy Union Will Fail
Petrobras Doubles Planned Asset Sales to $14 Billion to Cut Debt
Massive power blackout hits Nagano Prefecture; hospitals, trains, homes affected (Japan)
Senate OKs Noy powers to address blackouts (Philippines)
Oil Prices Don't Change Because of Rig Count
People hit hard by shortage of power and water (India)

## Got food? ##
Panic in Ukraine Over Food, Empty Stores and Protests; Strategic Food Reserve Empty
Kew quest to prevent coffee dying out
Scientists at the Royal Botanic Gardens in Kew have begun a desperate bid to find a new bean of coffee which can thrive as the climate warms, before the world's supplies run out.
Top Russian grocery stores 'freeze' food prices
Still Doubting that Organics are the Future?

## Environment/health ##
Deadly bacterium 'released from US high-security lab'
Officials in Louisiana investigating how a potential bioterror agent escaped but insist there is no threat to public
Crop herbicides play a role in shrinking monarch population
A butterfly being considered for federal protection is emblematic of the plight that pollinating insects face in part because farmers, enticed by ethanol mandates, are growing more herbicide-resistant crops, which has stripped millions of acres of crucial plant habitat.
AP PHOTOS: Antarctica's spectacular glaciers melting faster
The Life of a Plastic Water Bottle
Vice president of Sierra Leone quarantines himself after bodyguard dies of Ebola
WHO Warns Of Pandemics Worse Than 2009 Swine Flu Outbreak
Scientists hope an AIDS vaccine lies in llamas
The cute Andean animal's antibodies are nearly 100 percent effective in stopping the deadly virus from spreading, researchers say.
Vitamin and mineral supplements are big business, but their health benefits remain uncertain
Syria's civil war linked partly to drought, global warming

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
Facebook employees can access your FB account without password
NSA's bulk collection of American data gets approved again
Cybergeddon: Why the Internet could be the next "failed state"
If you think the Internet can go on being just like it is, here's some bad news.
Google wants to rank websites based on facts not links
The Internet Of Things: A Dystopian Nightmare Where Everyone And Everything Will Be Monitored On The Internet
Are Banks In Store For An 'Armageddon' Cyber Attack?

## Propaganda ##
Conservative Audience Laughs as Former NSA Chief Refers to Himself as an 'Unrelenting Libertarian'
Two Pieces of US Mass Media Propaganda (on Russia, Tamir Rice) Have Revealing Correlation
The Rise of a 'Democratic' Fascism
Traditional fascism is defined as a right-wing political system run by a dictator who prohibits dissent and relies on repression. But some analysts believe a new form of fascism has arisen that has a democratic façade and is based on relentless propaganda and endless war.
Neocons Want 'Regime Change' in Iran
A curious trait of America's neocons is that they never change course or learn from past mistakes. They simply press on for more and more "regime change," explaining their determination to sink the Iranian nuclear talks to reopen the pathway to more war.
Benjamin Netanyahu's Long History of Crying Wolf About Iran's Nuclear Weapons

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
Few Will Survive "Sundown in America" (video)
Hyundai Motor America Recalls 204,768 Cars Due to Power Steering

## Japan ##
Japan's FSA explores opening market to Islamic finance
48 infrastructure entities to get cybersecurity cooperation requests
The government will ask 48 entities in charge of key pieces of infrastructure to help it take countermeasures against cyberthreats, an official said Sunday.
Japan's high child poverty rate driven by an increasing number of single-parent families
Japan is one of the world's richest countries but one in six Japanese children now live in poverty - one of the worst rates in the industrialised world.
Number of neglected graves increasing
An increasing number of graves have been abandoned across the nation as no one is taking care of them due to lower birthrates and depopulation.
Path to Restoration / ¥8.1 trillion still needed in disaster-hit areas
The aerial photograph shows that almost all the land in the photographed area is still vacant. From the very beginning I have maintained that what was destroyed will never be rebuilt. -- RF
Over 1,700 business failures linked to March 2011 disasters
Marubeni faces ship shortage, grid issues in offshore wind push
Soup kitchens for needy children open to help break increasing cycle of poverty

## China ##
China's central bank cuts rates again to boost economy
China's manufacturing measure shows contraction for February
Police Pepper Spray Protesters in Hong Kong
New oil pipeline highlights China's effort to strengthen energy security
Groundbreaking Smog Documentary Divides Chinese Audiences
China may further lower growth target for 2015

## UK ##
UK blocks Russian oligarchs' deal to buy North Sea fields
Britain has blocked a deal by Russian billionaires, Mikhail Fridman and German Khan, to buy 12 oil and gas fields in the North Sea as part of their acquisition of Germany's oil firm DEA from RWE, citing possible sanctions against Russia.
What the latest statistics tell us about housing – in six charts
Cybercrime could become more lucrative than drugs, police chief warns
NHS lets down patients with appalling standards at weekends, says top doctor
Patients are suffering shameful safety risks and higher death rates because the NHS is failing to provide proper care at weekends, a damning report will warn this week.
Cromer councillor says townsfolk will 'get used to' street lights switch-off
GP crisis looming as half of family doctors plan to leave profession before 60
Odierno Raises Alarm Over UK Spending Levels
US Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno has added his voice to the chorus of senior politicians and military figures on both sides of the Atlantic voicing concerns over the potential impact of further defense cuts to Britain's armed forces.

## US ##
Illinois Pension Plans 39% Funded; Taxpayers On the Hook for $105 Billion in Liabilities; It Will Get Worse!
The long inflation con on the public
How the CPI severely underreports inflation and the slow erosion in the American standard of living.
Q4 Household Debt Report——What Deleveraging?
Teen Girl Fatally Shot By Denver Police Hit From Left: Autopsy
U.S. Air Force eyes 28 launches, shared investment for next rockets
North Carolina Lobbyists Can Officially Screw Politicians Legally
A clandestine sexual relationship between a lobbyist and a government official they lobby may sound unethical, but the North Carolina Ethics Commission says it's perfectly legal.
Justice in America: But for the video…
If a group of regular citizens had pulled this on someone, they'd all likely be facing criminal conspiracy charges on top of the perjury and other charges. So why aren't these cops and prosecutors?
Kentucky Senator Rand Paul wins straw poll in boost to 2016 presidential prospects
WSJ Praises "Waiter, Bartender Recovery" While 74% Of Americans Believe They Will Work Until They Die
Student groups pressure colleges over the insane cost of textbooks
The Real American Exceptionalism
From Torture to Drone Assassination, How Washington Gave Itself a Global Get-Out-of-Jail-Free Card
Q4 Household Debt Report: Booming Subprime Auto Loans Signal Danger Ahead
Wells Fargo puts a ceiling on subprime auto loans
Wells Fargo, one of the largest subprime car lenders, is pulling back from that roaring market, a move that is being felt throughout the broader auto industry.
Struggle Over Officer's Gun Leads to Fatal Police Shooting: LAPD
NYC Residents Will Pay $2-3k a Month for "Micro-Apartments" as Luxury Car Sales Outpace Regular Car Sales
Dot-com deja vu: Nasdaq tops 5,000, approaching record high
$4 Million In Gold Bars Stolen In 11th Largest Heist In History

And finally...
Science finds the best place to hide from zombies

Saturday, February 28, 2015


News Links, February 28, 2015

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
Gold Sovereigns Bought by Greeks in Volume as New Greek Drachmas Designed
German Parliament Approves Greek Bailout Extension
Greece runs out of funding options despite euro zone reprieve
Europe's Survival Depends on Debt Restructuring, Not Growth
How Much Will You Pay to Park Cash as Central Banks Go Negative?
Putin Scores Victory Over Ukraine Allies in Bond Market Collapse
Fighting eases in eastern Ukraine but economic collapse now looms
We've Just Received a Bunch of Disappointing News on U.S. Manufacturing
Paranoia And Purges For Venezuela As Oil Misery Continues Paranoia And Purges For Venezuela As Oil Misery Continues
Oil Burns A Hole; Malaysia's Billionaires Reel As Ringgit Slips
Things are looking up for the global gun market

## Airline Death Spiral ##
Airline passengers are paying the price so that investors can profit
Spirit Air Doesn't Care You Hate All Its Extra Fees
United Airlines warns pilots after errors lead to 'near misses'
AirAsia India posts Rs 21 crore loss
Man taken off Shanghai Airlines flight in handcuffs after refusing to leave window seat

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov shot dead in Moscow
How ISIS Pays Its Fighters——From Gulf State Bankrollers
U.S. Navy says it has been flying P-8 reconnaissance planes out of Philippines
The United States has been flying its most advanced surveillance aircraft, the P-8A Poseidon, out of the Philippines for patrols over the South China Sea, the U.S. Navy said on Thursday, acknowledging the flights for the first time.
Chinese diplomat tells West to consider Russia's security concerns over Ukraine
Western powers should take into consideration Russia's legitimate security concerns over Ukraine, a top Chinese diplomat has said in an unusually frank and open display of support for Moscow's position in the crisis.
Former NATO Intel Officer Blames US for Ukraine Crisis
A former NATO intelligence analyst has said that the crisis in Ukraine stems from as far back as 30 years when the United States "deliberately sabotaged" relations between Europe and Russia.
The "Snipers' Massacre" on the Maidan in Ukraine (PDF)
Three days ago, former U.S. diplomat William R. Polk, who served President John F. Kennedy during the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, warned that the West was risking a similar crisis in reverse by pressing NATO forces aggressively onto Russia's borders. He has now added this postscript about the need for wise leaders.

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Live, From Athens: Anti-Government Protest
Antinuclear activists ordered to remove tents from ministry premises (Japan)
The Tokyo District Court on Thursday ordered the removal of tents erected by antinuclear campaigners on the premises of the economy ministry, which oversees the country's nuclear power industry.

## Energy/resources ##
As Oil Prices Collapse, North Dakota Considers Weakening Standards on Radioactive Drilling Waste
As the collapse of oil prices threatens North Dakota's shale drilling rush, state regulators are considering a move they say could save the oil industry millions of dollars: weakening the state's laws on disposing of radioactive waste.
If in doubt, externalize! -- RF
Enerflex shuts oilsands facility and cuts jobs amid squeezed margins
Oilfield services company Enerflex Ltd. is the latest entity in the Canadian oil patch to report compressed margins and job cuts as the oil price downturn continues to reverberate across the industry.

## Got food? ##
Internet, RIP? (Ron Paul)
Uber Security Breach Affected Up To 50,000 Drivers
A security breach at car service Uber may have disclosed the names and driver's license numbers of about 50,000 drivers across multiple states, the company said in a statement on Friday.
Personal info of 2 mln Beijing citizens leaked and sold

I mean it just doesn't get much more pathetic than this. Jeb Bush has such little genuine support, he was forced to bus in supporters from ground zero of American cronyism, K Street in Washington D.C., in order to ensure phony applause at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC).

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
Road rage endangers everyone (US)
The National Highway Traffic Safety Commission reported that the number of fatal accidents in which law enforcement officers listed "road rage" as a contributing factor has increased tenfold since 2004.

## Japan ##
Japan's small firms hold out for Abenomics trickle down
Government proposes SDF rescue of Japanese
The government on Friday proposed that the Self-Defense Forces be allowed to rescue Japanese nationals embroiled in terrorist attacks overseas if a rescue by local police authorities cannot be expected.
Abe aims to formally authorize SDF ship inspections beyond Japanese waters
The Abe administration proposed Friday expanding the geographic range of ship inspections that can be conducted by the Self-Defense Forces beyond Japan.

## China ##
China and the Dragon Tail of Marx
The dragon tail of Marx's end-game of overcapacity and finance capital is about to shred China's fantasy that the state can micro-manage both capitalism and financialization with no contradictions or consequences.
China farming boom has left ecosystems in danger of total collapse
China's push for more intense farming has kept its city dwellers well-fed and helped lift millions of rural workers out of poverty. But it has come at a cost. Ecosystems in what should be one of the country's most fertile region have already been badly damaged – some beyond repair – and the consequences will be felt across the world.
Britain's social mobility 'cold spots'
Babies born since the credit crunch could become first generation to seen their chances of climbing the ladder decline, warns mobility tsar Alan Milburn

## US ##
The Recovery, Unemployment, and Earnings Are All Based on Fraud and Accounting Gimmicks
For six years, we've been told that the US economy is in recovery. This is a totally bogus narrative that was dreamt up by the Central Planners running the Fed. Remember the "green shoots" craze of 2009. It was BS. The US economy is a disaster and has been since 2009.
Too Big to Fail (infographic)
Prison-industrial complex: US sells prisoners to the highest bidders

Thursday, February 26, 2015


News Links, February 27, 2015

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
Their Big, Fat Greek Bank Run: Bank Deposits Plunge To 2005 Levels
Greece Warns It May Default On IMF Loan Next Week
Ex-Plunge Protection Team Whistleblower: "Governments Control Markets; There Is No Price Discovery Anymore"
Oil Price Crash: Top 5 At-Risk Countries
Canada's oil sands cash flows to decline by $23-billion over two years
Petrobras hires JPMorgan for $3 billion in asset sales - sources
Hyper-Luxury Cars Are Now Selling Faster Than Normal Ones
Welcome to a new gilded age of driving in which sales of Ferraris grow faster than Fords
Israel Seen Preparing More Shocks for Shekel After Surprise Cut
Young Spaniards moving to Germany get trapped in dismal jobs
Samsung Electronics to freeze salaries in Korea for first time since 2009
ECB's Nowotny opposes ejecting Russia from SWIFT system: report
GM's Indonesia closure highlights automakers' emerging markets woes
General Motors Co's (GM.N) decision to shutter a car factory in Indonesia comes as global automakers rethink the timing and scope of investments in emerging markets once touted as engines of growth.
Major Firms Are Saying the Stage Is Set for Another Crisis in the Bond Market

## Airline Death Spiral ##
Southwest Grounds 128 Jets Over Missed Inspections
Southwest Airlines on Tuesday announced it grounded 128 jets after it failed to inspect hydraulic systems designed to serve as a back-up in case of trouble with the aircraft's rudder system.
Southwest Airlines Maintenance Snafu Raises Safety Concerns
SAA mulls ways to cut extra kilogrammes on flights
USED blankets, magazines and left-over food are some of the items South African Airways (SAA) is considering leaving behind in return long-distance flights to make an aircraft lighter and save on fuel costs.
Malaysia's AirAsia X to cut costs, may defer plane deliveries: Acting CEO
Malaysia's AirAsia X Bhd (AIRX.KL) will cut flights on unprofitable routes, reorganize staff and defer some aircraft deliveries to turn around the loss-making long-haul budget carrier, the airline's acting chief executive said on Wednesday.
Aer Lingus blames earnings dive on pension row

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
US-Israel quarrel intensifies over Netanyahu speech
Saudis Said to Aid Israeli Plan to Bomb Iran
As the Obama administration is rushing to complete a nuclear agreement with Iran and reduce regional tensions, the Israeli media is reporting on a deal with Saudi Arabia to let Israeli warplanes transit Saudi airspace en route to bombing Iran.
U.S. casts doubt on secret Iran nuke facility
The State Department on Thursday cast doubt on claims by an Iranian dissident group that it has discovered a secret underground Iranian nuclear facility.
Middle East Countries Wary Of Iran Sanctions Easing, Not Possible Nuclear Weapons
While the U.S. and Israel focus on the implications of Iran developing its nuclear program, some of Iran's regional adversaries are concerned about something else: the power that Iran's economy, unshackled from sanctions by a nuclear deal with the international community, would exert in the Middle East.
Central American Migrant Crisis: US Could See Another Border Surge This Year
Wary of Russia, Lithuania brings back conscription
Poland to Send Troops to Help Train Ukrainian Army
Emails From Kiev: Free Speech Vanishes, Total Media Thought Control; US Radar System Falls Into Rebel Hands?
Ukraine Enters The Endgame
Ukraine Rations Food; Interbank Rate New Record Low; Monetization of Bonds; "Devaluation Kerosene"; Electronics a Store of Value
The Real Ukraine Aggressor: IMF Burying Bankrupt Country In Debt To Fight Civil War
U.S. military vehicles paraded 300 yards from the Russian border (Estonia)
Houthi militiamen storm two military bases in Yemen
Breedlove: No substitute for permanent US military presence in Europe
China submarines outnumber U.S. fleet: U.S. admiral
China is building some "fairly amazing submarines" and now has more diesel- and nuclear-powered vessels than the United States, a top U.S. Navy admiral told U.S. lawmakers on Wednesday, although he said their quality was inferior.
Cyprus Signs Military Deal to Let Russian Navy Ships Dock
India to purchase Japanese military aircraft
Myanmar conflict: Chinese mercenaries said to be fighting with rebels

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Thai bill to restrict protests sails through first reading
Greek protesters clash with police in first backlash against Syriza

## Energy/resources ##
Top Oil Drillers Face Years Of Pain, Get A Grip On Cost
The world's biggest offshore drillers reported plunging earnings and orders on Thursday but managed to get a grip on costs to improve their chances of riding out a sectoral crisis that could last several more years.
EU chiefs launch biggest energy shake-up in half century
Maersk Positions Self for 'New Oil Reality' as Profit Fall
Denmark-based Maersk Drilling is positioning itself for a "new oil reality" of reduced tendering activity for offshore rigs and lower dayrates across all rig market segments by introducing cost-cutting and efficiency enhancement programs to boost its competitiveness in the current market.
Could Iranian Gas Be The Solution For Europe?
Junk: With Downgrade, No One Excited About Petrobras' Oil Finds Anymore
Nigeria's Future Depends On Electricity
OPEC Considers Emergency Meeting On Oil Prices
Russia Is Not Bluffing With Turkish Stream Project
European oil majors cut capex, eye output growth
Repsol cuts exploration Capex despite profit boost
Exxon Says Spending To Fall 11% This Year To $34B
Exxon Mobil Corp said spending will decline about 11 percent this year to around $34 billion due to plunging oil prices, according to a regulatory filing this week.
Whiting to cut Bakken rig deployments
S.Korea's nuclear watchdog approves restart of second-oldest reactor
Is the US Overplaying Its Energy Hand?

## Got food? ##
US Addiction to Corn and Cars Is Fueling Global Hunger and Displacement
Study links common food additives to Crohn's disease, colitis
Common additives in ice cream, margarine, packaged bread and many processed foods may promote the inflammatory bowel diseases ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease as well as a group of obesity-related conditions, scientists said on Wednesday.
Three-quarters of supermarket chickens carry food poisoning bug (UK)

## Environment/health ##
Smoking 'worse than previously thought': two thirds expected to die early (Australia)
Global warming: Australian deserts to expand as tropical circulation changes
Resistance: The Movie That Will Make You Care About Antibiotic Misuse
Dangerous infections now spreading outside hospitals
Resistant strain of swine flu feared; virus killing thousands
Overfishing driving slavery on Thailand's seafood boats
A report released Wednesday by the British nonprofit Environmental Justice Foundation says Thai fishing boats are now catching about 85 percent less than what they brought in 50 years ago, making it one of the most overfished regions on the planet.
Great Barrier Reef corals eat plastic
"If microplastic pollution increases on the Great Barrier Reef, corals could be negatively affected as their tiny stomach-cavities become full of indigestible plastic."
Want muscles? Rice is the new meat
Alberta tar sands pollution suspected in rare cancer cases
Medical tourism: Asia leads industry worth billions
Climate Change And Economy: Food Waste Costs Global Consumers $400B A Year While Boosting CO2 Emissions, Study Finds
Agricultural insecticides pose a global risk to surface water bodies

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
Anthem Hack: Millions of Non-Anthem Customers Could Be Victims
Health insurer Anthem said Tuesday that the recent major cyberattack on its systems may have affected 8.8 million to 18.8 million non-Anthem customers -- people who are or were insured by other Blue Cross Blue Shield providers.
Spy Cables: Greenpeace among intelligence targets
Numerous politicised spy requests sent to Pretoria, seeking information on 'rogue NGOs', politicians and exile groups.
Al Jazeera Journalists Arrested in Connection With Drones Over Paris
Google network learns to play Space Invaders in breakthrough for artificial intelligence
Canadian Spies Collect Domestic Emails in Secret Security Sweep
Chinese spies responsible for break-ins at African nuclear site: leaked documents
Secret Service Is Testing Fleet Of Drones To Protect The White House
Official Reports on the Damage Caused by Edward Snowden's Leaks Are Totally Redacted

## Propaganda ##
Why Does the FBI Have to Manufacture its Own Plots if Terrorism and ISIS Are Such Grave Threats?
Top 10 Bogus ISIS Stories
Americans Catching a New War Fever
The U.S. media/political elites are again riling up the American people about threats abroad, whether it's the hysterical reporting about Russia or the sensationalistic coverage of Islamic State atrocities. The results are showing with more Americans favoring more war.
Planting False Evidence on Iran
Prior to the U.S. intelligence community's 2007 assessment that Iran was not working on a nuclear weapons program, there was a scramble among U.S. and Israeli officials to show that it was. The CIA's Operation Merlin also revealed that U.S. officials were not above planting false evidence.
Long March of the Yellow Jackets: How a One-Time Terrorist Group Prevailed on Capitol Hill

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
Must read: The Externality Trap, or, How Progress Commits Suicide
Buzz Aldrin Urges U.S. to Establish Colony on Mars
Aldrin is still living in the past, when energy was cheap. Ain't gonna be no Mars colony. -- RF
Why It's So Difficult to Repair Stuff: It's Made That Way
Overshoot: Population: Four Out of Five Scientists Agree...
Enlisted leaders tell Congress budget uncertainties hurt morale
Role of Wages of the Common Worker in Oil Prices, Collapse
U.S. Healthcare and the Tragedy of the Commons
When the system is set up to encourage maximizing self-interest, accountability for the whole is lost.

## Japan ##
Weak spending to show Japan consumers unconvinced by Bank of Japan's stimulus
Fisheries 'shocked' at silence over water leak at wrecked Fukushima No. 1 plant
Revamping security policy: Japan eyes support to foreign forces without Diet's OK
Shipments of PCs fall 51.3%
Trio of approvals in Fukushima seals deal for radioactive soil dump

## China ##
China's population tops 1.36 billion
According to the National Bureau of Statistics, 7.1 million people were added to the national population in the past year. The data takes into account the total number born, 16.87 million, and offsets it with the dead, 9.77 million.
China drops leading technology brands for state purchases
Housing Crash in China Steeper than in Pre-Lehman America
Microsoft to close 2 China factories, cutting 9,000 jobs

## UK ##
Almost 700,000 people in UK have zero-hours contract as main job
Japan's former Prime Minister will warn Wales to learn from Fukushima disaster and stay nuclear-free
UK oil production revenues fall by £24b in 2014
EU regulations on genetically modified crops prevent Britain's agricultural progress, say MPs
Scottish plans for central identity database spark privacy criticism
British lakes see huge rise in toxic algae linked to Alzheimer's
Britain's lakes have seen a huge increase in toxic algae which is linked to Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease, scientists have warned.

## US ##
Slap by Florida cop highlights need for homeless rights, say advocates
Depression taking a bigger economic toll on US
Only one-quarter of Americans plan to retire
FedEx And UPS Refuse to Ship a Digital Mill That Can Make Untraceable Guns
Wage Theft Runs Rampant In New York: Report
Forced Blood Draws, DNA Collection and Biometric Scans: What Country Is This?
This Is Why Hewlett-Packard Is Firing 58,000——To Fund Massive Share Buybacks
Oil Bust Empties Out Private-Jet Parking Lot in Texas
Citigroup unit probed by more authorities over money laundering
U.S. refinery strike continues with no steps toward settlement
Baddest Bug: C. Diff Hits Half a Million Americans
Obstruction of Justice – New York Governor Andrew Cuomo Begins Purge of State Employee Emails
Hillary Clinton Exposed Part 2 – Clinton Foundation Took Millions From Countries That Also Fund ISIS
Capital Goods Shipments Tumble, 6th Miss In A Row
What Happens If The Department Of Homeland Security Shuts Down
Stock-market crash of 2016: The countdown begins

And finally...
Owner of revenge porn site asks Google to remove links to his own photos

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