Tuesday, June 21, 2011


News Links, June 22, 2011

Happy Summer Solstice!

## Global economic meltdown ##
Greece: Voluntary bank help would be a default
"The Fitch credit ratings agency has said that if commercial lenders roll over their loans to Greece, it will deem the country to be in default."
S&P Reconfirms Greek Debt Restructuring Likely a Default; Forget About "Voluntary Restructuring"
Greece Confidence Vote Nears, As Protest Turns To Riots
Greek Default Could Spur Europe-Wide Contagion
Baltic sea index falls, China power cuts eyed
Russian plane crash raises fresh concerns about ageing fleet
China Says Willing to Help Economic Growth in Europe
China's new bond buying hints at shift to euro
Credit Suisse downgrades China banks, GDP
Italy Will Fight Last Stand in Debt Crisis (FT)
Canada youth mired in joblessness facing steeper climb out
Canadian big cities attracting poverty, Statscan data show
IMF says Spain's economy still facing major risks
Change in China Hits U.S. Purse
The Death of Demand - The Post-Consumer Debt Economy
Imports of gold and silver soar 222% in India
Turkish bank retrofits ATMs to dispense gold ingots
Japan ready to buy rescue bonds for Greece: Noda
One cripple helping another. -- RF

## Fault lines/flashpoints/military ##
Deadly bombings hit Diwaniya, central Iraq
U.S. Must Help Asean Countries Build South China Sea Defenses, McCain Says
"The U.S. must help Southeast Asian countries build up naval defenses to counter 'aggressive' Chinese actions in the South China Sea, Senator John McCain said in a speech."
Chinese patrol ship docks in Singapore
"One of China's largest maritime patrol ships docked in Singapore on Sunday (June 19) after it travelled through the disputed waters of the South China Sea, in a move likely to raise tensions with neighbours staking rival claims to waters thought to hold reserves of oil and gas."
Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan hold joint anti-terror drills
Argentina warns Britain over Falklands nationality switch
"Argentina's foreign minister said on Tuesday that Britain will be to blame if "fanatics" carry out death threats against the first Falkland islander to take up Argentine nationality."
Barack Obama to announce withdrawal of 33,000 troops from Afghanistan
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad ally forced to resign as pressure grows on Iran president
China may play crucial negotiator role in Libya
"A top leader of Libya's opposition forces has begun a two-day trip to Beijing following a visit by Libya's foreign minister, making China the only great power so far that both warring parties in the nation's civil war have been willing to visit."
Pentagon Crosses $1 Trillion Threshold
Rome spends more and more on its legions, and yet the empire continues to crumble. -- RF
China plans aircraft carrier test in July
Saudi inks $1.7bn deal to upgrade missiles system

## Global unrest ##
North Korea 'buys anti-riot gear from China'
The natives are getting restless. -- RF
Northern Syria deserted thanks to scorched earth campaign
Latest developments in Arab world's unrest (AP)

## Energy/resources ##
Water Is the New Texas Liquid Gold
"The water crisis in Texas, the biggest oil- and gas-producing state in the U.S., highlights a continuing debate in North America and Europe over fracking's impact on water supplies. Environmentalists say the method poses a contamination threat, while farmers face growing competition for scarce water."
U.S. backs oil sales from Libyan rebels
High oil prices threaten to derail growth in India, China: IEA
Gas pact with ConocoPhillips sparks protest in Bangladesh
"A crucial deal between the government and US energy giant ConocoPhillips for gas exploration in the Bay of Bengal has sparked a row in the country as a Bangladeshi organisation announced a nationwide shutdown to protest against the pact."
US lawmakers set to allow speedier Arctic drilling

## Infrastructure scavenging ##
"This is a new and growing website, which includes history and news, full-text scholarly and professional research on metal theft, interviews, prevention brochures, and law enforcement initiatives concerned with the crime."

## Got food? ##
Pork price hits record high in China: state media
Compare Farmland Prices From Around The World
Century of Hunger Is Warning From France as Farm Ministers From G-20 Meet

## Environment/health ##
Snow Falling in Colorado on Eve of Northern Hemisphere's Summer Solstice
Radioactive tritium leaks found at 48 US nuke sites
"'You got pipes that have been buried underground for 30 or 40 years, and they've never been inspected,' whistleblower says."
U.S. Nuclear Plant Radioactive Leaks Won't Necessarily Be Quickly Detected: GAO Report
Global Rise in Cancer Cost $300 Billion in 2010, Harvard Economist Says

## Intelligence/security/internet/systemic breakdown ##
Biometrics system failure in Malaysia causes chaos
"The high profile failure of a state-of-the-art biometrics system at a major international travel hub in Malaysia last weekend has sent shockwaves throughout the global biometrics industry."
Router Problem Causes Brief Internet Failure For State
"DENVER -- A router failure caused a brief statewide Internet outage Wednesday morning for all state computers."
Hackers claim attack on FBI partner in US
"Hackers who claimed responsibility for online attacks against Sony Corp. and the CIA said they compromised the security of more than 1,000 accounts of an FBI partner organization, hours before releasing a web manifesto calling for "war" on governments that control the Internet."
LulzSec Hacktivists Declare War on .Gov Websites; Feds Stand Ready
Serious Surgical Mistakes Persist, Despite Safety Rules

## Japan ##
How Temporary Is Japan's Recent Trade Deficit?
"Replacing Japan's nuclear power generating capacity with coal-fired generators would raise Japan's imported coal bill to $17 billion (JPY1.36 trillion), or some 37% of Japan's average current trade surplus over the past several years. Covering the shortfall with LNG-fired capacity would increase Japan's annual imported LNG bill to $27 billion (JPY2.16 trillion) 58% of its current trade surplus."
Fukushima water treatment delayed again due to pump malfunction
Strike At Chinese Parts Plant May Slow Citizen Watch Shipments
"TOKYO (Nikkei)--A labor strike at a Citizen Watch Co.-affiliated parts factory in China could delay watch shipments in July and beyond, according to Citizen Holdings Co."
Nidec May Move Test Facilities Overseas To Save Power
Toyota hiring 3,000 to 4,000 temp workers in Japan
Last big push. -- RF
Tepco reportedly to ask to loan refinancing deal

## China ##
Beijing's new airport expects inaugural flight in 2017
China sets yuan at record high to tame inflation
Executive Says China's Scrap-Copper Imports to Stay High
China's Rare-Earth Exports Decline
China resource demand continues, despite "slowdown"
China growth to cool as credit, trade ebb: Duncan
"HONG KONG (MarketWatch) — China's era of rapid economic growth is drawing to a close, with a great moderation now inevitable, according to economist and author Richard Duncan."

## UK ##
Businesses feel weight of political unrest in Middle East and North Africa

## US ##
Bernanke May Prolong Record Stimulus
Neighborhoods abandoned to crime (Indianapolis)
Smith: As the city shrinks, plague of empty homes spreads (Indianapolis)
Weirton Water Outage Caused Widespread Woes
"The community is still trying to recover and recoup losses after a massive water outage."
California district can't afford to use new $105M school
" In a sign of just how deep economic and budget problems have grown in the nation's largest state, a gleaming new high school built at a cost of $105 million will sit unused for at least a year because education officials say they don't have money to operate it."
Existing-home sales sink to their lowest level of the year
Distressed Property Sales Drop, Despite Push to Sell
In Pittsburgh, drastic bus service cuts strand commuters
Financial sector layoffs rise, more cuts ahead
Geithner Confident U.S. Will Avoid Default Crisis
Harrisburg Hoping God Can Help Balance the Books
Gannett laying off 700 more workers amid ad slump
Bill Gross: "College Is Worthless"
Nasdaq flashes major warning signals

And finally... US Army Gets How-To Guide for Zombie Invasion

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