Sunday, April 03, 2011


News Links, April 3-4, 2011

## Global economic meltdown ##
Ford to idle first plants over parts shortage due to Japan quake
Irish property is going for a song as investors pay price of building boom, Russians snapping it up
How a big US bank laundered billions from Mexico's murderous drug gangs
Australian Flood, Cyclone Disasters to Cost Economy $9 Billion, Swan Says
Black Swan Events Add Peril For Earnings Season
Watch "Inside Job" - The Wall Street Horror Movie, For Free

## Fault lines/flashpoints/military ##
Muammar Gaddafi's deputy foreign minister flies to Athens
Western military advisers become visible in Benghazi
Libyan rebels 'receive foreign training'
"Rebel source tells Al Jazeera about training offered by US and Egyptian special forces in eastern Libya."
Syria uprising: Dissidents seized from their homes
Hundreds injured in new Yemeni protests
Gulf Arabs states reject Iran "interference"
Sub purchase in response to regional naval build-up, says Thailand
No austerity at U.S. embassy in Baghdad
"The U.S. embassy in Baghdad is already the largest in the world. But when U.S. troops withdraw from Iraq later this year, its staff will be doubled."
Video: Uprisings in Southern Africa
Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1% (Vanity Fair)
"Americans have been watching protests against oppressive regimes that concentrate massive wealth in the hands of an elite few. Yet in our own democracy, 1 percent of the people take nearly a quarter of the nation's income—an inequality even the wealthy will come to regret."
UAE wins global support to combat piracy

## Energy/resources ##
Deputy minister says electricity will be rationed (South Africa)
"Energy rationing will have to be implemented in SA soon as the country struggles to close the gap in electricity supply, Deputy Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene said yesterday."
Wind energy surplus threatens eastern German power grid
"More than one third of Germany's 21,500 wind turbines are located in the nation's east. This concentration of generating capacity regularly overloads the region's electricity grid, threatening blackouts."
Will Waste Heat Be Our Next Power Source?
No. And anyone who's been paying attention will know why. -- RF
More than one in 10 nuclear power plants at risk from earthquakes
Crude-oil futures break through $108 a barrel
Peak power demand to triple in two decades, forum told (Saudi Arabia)
China urges coal firms to control prices
"China's state planning agency has called on regions and enterprises to adopt "effective measures" to keep coal prices stable as its power utilities struggle with rising costs and the government wrestles with inflation."

## Got food? ##
Texas crop, weather: Up to 64% of Texas in severe or extreme drought

## Environment/health ##
Native plants help sustain birds and beneficial insects
Thailand on alert as floods death toll rises
Radiation detected in rainfall of more US states

## Intelligence/security/internet/systemic breakdown ##
Report: NASA Vulnerable To Crippling Cyber Attacks
Johnson & Johnson quality catastrophe
US Air Force Offensive Cyber Ops Limited, For Now

## Japan ##
Japan's Liquid Fuels Crisis
Crisis in Fukushima forces utilities to delay restart of other reactors
Tepco dumps concrete to plug radiation leak at No. 2
Japanese engineers fail to plug radiation leak at Fukushima power plant
Crews 'facing 100-year battle' at Fukushima
Update on Japan's Nuclear Crisis
Japan scraps night games after quake disaster
Govt Eyes Reconstruction Efforts Using Private-Sector Funds
Because the government ain't got no money. -- RF
Tokyo Electric stock falls below 400 yen for 1st time since 1952
Government likely to limit electricity use by decree
Up to 15 GW shortage when hot weather sets in. Government to set limits and impose hefty fines for violations. It's going to be a long, hot summer. -- RF
Tepco may hobble Toshiba and Hitachi
"Crisis links may be kiss of death to reactor sales."
Blackouts A Hazard For Japanese Hospitals
Japan's reconstruction will suck in softwood

## China ##
Nearly half of Chinese dairies to stop work
Beijing looks to new population controls
Rising fuel prices cut into power producers' profits

## UK ##
Drug gangs moving on to internet, claims Manchester study
Vale street lights could be switched off to save money
Honda considers suspending UK production after Japanese crisis
Ministers admit family debt burden is set to soar
Energy bills to rise because of Libya and Japan turmoil
"Energy bills are expected to rise by up to 15 per cent over the next few months, experts say, taking the average household bill to nearly £1,300 a year."

## US ##
Only two U.S. nuclear sites are in compliance with federal fire regulations
4400 San Franciscans Without Power, In PG&E's Second Outage Today
Meet The 171 Banks For Which The Margin Of Failure Is One Thousand Dollars
Study: More than 11% of US bridges are 'structurally deficient'
Dominion East Ohio wants to spend $200 million per year replacing aging pipelines
"Dominion East Ohio wants to step up the pace of its work replacing more than 5,000 miles of deteriorating bare metal pipeline corroding under the streets -- and it is going to cost you."
Protesters Call for Indian Point Shut Down
Ohio Anti-Union Law: Opponents Start Repeal Push
BofA is shedding branch offices
Even More Uncertainty Faces Young And Unemployed
Half Moon Bay to Outsource Entire Police Department
Rockford Begins Work to Remove 16% of Area Street Lights
The Economic Truth That Nobody Will Admit: We're Heading Back Toward a Double-Dip (Robert Reich)
What a shame Reich can't — or won't — see what's really happening. The "double dip" was a crock of baloney from day one. There are ups and downs in any trend, and the so-called double dip is just a continuation of the downward trend. Buckle up, because the roller coaster is just starting its downhill run! -- RF
Housing Will Remain A Government Program
Obama about to launch his reelection campaign. It could cost $1 billion.
A Resurgence Of Lousy Jobs (shining the cold light of truth on the recent jobs report)
Republican Budget Makes $4 Trillion-Plus In Cuts
The Dirty Secret of the Debt Ceiling Debate: Nobody Wants Treasuries
The Case of the Disappearing Mailboxes

And finally... Hundreds stage pillow fight in central London

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