Sunday, July 17, 2011


News Links, July 17-18, 2011

## Global economic meltdown ##
New PIIGS Debt Restructure Plan Backfiring, Contagion Nears
Stress-test message to banks: Prepare for possible Greek default
Pressure rises for Greek debt buy-back, swap
"German Chancellor Angela Merkel called on Sunday for private investors to make a major contribution to bailing out Greece, as pressure rose for radical action to cut the country's debt burden."
Trichet: ECB would reject Greek bonds as collateral
"The European Central Bank's chief said it could not accept defaulted bonds as collateral and that governments would have to intervene and correct things were Greece government debt to be rated as a default."
IMF says that huge Greek debt 'on knife edge'
European Bank Stress Test; Only Eight? Europe Is in Peril! (Forbes)
The price of gold: as influential as a global power
"The record price of gold and the universal obsession with the sparkling metal make it a parallel global power."
Tips on storing precious metals safely
Panic Over US Default Would Be Worse Than Lehman, says Larry Summers
U.S. Default Would Likely Cause Stocks, Bonds, Dollar To Collapse
Investors Grapple With Default Paranoia
"'With the U.S. still debating the debt ceiling and EMU politicians divided on how to tackle the EMU debt crisis, it is time to "Think the Unthinkable," namely U.S. and EMU officials failing to find credible solutions,' Morgan Stanley said in a note to clients."
No deal as clock ticks to debt deadline
Signs of Wilt in Australia's Economy? (WSJ)
'Unprecedented' Retail Slump Tanks Shopping-Mall Bonds: Australia Credit
Economists Carmen Reinhardt And Ken Rogoff Explain Why Growth Won't Cure Debt
Europe Scrambles For Swiss Safety As EURCHF Plummets At Open To All Time Lows
Abu Dhabi rents, sales prices to continue to fall, says JLL

## Fault lines/flashpoints/military ##
U.S., Vietnam in Exercises Amid Tensions With China
"The United States and Vietnam launched a series of joint naval exchanges on Friday in the latest sign of warming ties between the former foes, as both nations grapple with ways to contain a more-assertive China."
Canada looking at building military bases in Arctic
Yemeni protesters announce shadow government
No exit strategy in sight for Japan MSDF's anti-piracy activities off Somalia
"More than two years since Maritime Self-Defense Force destroyers and aircraft were dispatched to patrol for pirates off the coast of Somalia, there is no sign that the mission will end soon.
"The extended length of the mission has led to the construction of an SDF base in Djibouti."
US drone strikes in Pakistan claiming many civilian victims, says campaigner
"For every 10 to 15 people killed, maybe they get one militant."
Tel Aviv tent city erected in protest against high house prices
Afghanistan: Senior aide to President Karzai killed
CVN 77 G.H.W. Bush Enters Persian Gulf As CIA Veteran Robert Baer Predicts September Israel-Iran War
Democracy in steep decline around the world
Philippines hails US support on South China Sea

## Global unrest ##
Police attacked during disturbances (Norther Ireland)
Northern Ireland violence drives out immigrant families
"Terrified families from East Timor flee as loyalists attack nationalist homes in Portadown in marching season clashes"
Syrian opposition forms council to counter Assad
"Syrian opposition factions meeting in Istanbul on Saturday formed a broad-based council in the hope of creating a government-in-waiting to fill a void if street protests succeed in toppling President Bashar al-Assad."
Syrian Troops Expand Crackdown on Protest While 30 Die in Fight
Arab Spring hardening into summer of stalemates
Syrian Deaths Mount; Yemenis Protest Killings
Tunisian police fire in air to disperse rioters
"Tunisian police fired in the air and used teargas early Sunday to disperse a crowd of about 200 people who had set fire to a police station in a suburb of the capital."
Vietnamese Police Arrest More Than a Dozen Anti-China Protesters

## Energy/resources ##
Power shortage in China is due to high energy consuming industries
Germany faced with winter power shortage
"Germany's recent decision to go nuclear-free means that eight nuclear power stations have already been taken off the grid permanently. Now companies are casting around for alternative sources.
"But according to financial magazine Wirtschaftswoche, energy providers have told the Economics Ministry their reserve power plants can only provide 500 megawatts of power before the autumn sets in, leaving a shortage of another 500 megawatts."
Russia to establish 2 million mt oil product stocks: report
Fuel shortage hit Argentina's economy
Pemex Says 80 Oil Wells Shut Down Yesterday Due to Heavy Rain Re-Starting
Police foil attempt to smuggle diesel (UAE)
"45 trucks driven by Arab and Asian drivers were seized as they tried to smuggle diesel from Al Ain to the northern emirates."
Three people killed at gas stations as fuel shortage grips Yemen
"Three people were killed and others injured on Friday when violence broke out between people queuing at gas stations as the fuel crisis deepens in most Yemeni cities."
U.S. watches helium stockpile dwindle
"AMARILLO, Texas, July 17 (UPI) -- U.S. officials say the world's supply of helium is steadily dwindling and can't be replaced.
"Texas is the site of the last U.S. Federal Helium Reserve and its underground stockpile of the gas is running out.
"'There is just a finite amount of helium out here,' Leslie Theiss of the Bureau of Land Management's Amarillo field office told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. 'There's only so much we can do. The clock is winding down on this place.'"
Will Arizona's Solar Industry Survive the Summer?
Sharp rise in energy demand may put pressure for higher oil output
China, rich with coal, seeks more next door in Mongolia to meet its energy needs
Ethanol Rises to Three-Year High as Heat Threatens Corn Crop
Already? The Coming Electric Vehicle Battery Glut
$76 Trillion: UN's Cost of "Going Green" Soars

## Infrastructure scavenging ##
Scrap Metal Thieves May Have Stolen Warhead Parts
"A train transporting defense gear from Romania to Bulgaria was broken into and military equipment went missing, Romanian military prosecutors said in a statement on Sunday."

## Got food? ##
Russia again lifts grain output forecast to 90 million tons
Down on the farm, investors see big potential
Mississippi oyster harvest could be lost
Beef Contaminated by Radiation Intensifies Food-Safety Concerns in Japan
India has history of food shortages, often leading to violence

## Environment/health ##
In The Year Since Deepwater Horizon Stopped, There Have Been 5,000 Spills In The Gulf
Somalia wracked by drought, thousands dead
Nearly 900 heat records already broken in July (US; video)
Is America Ready for the Super Clap?

## Intelligence/security/internet/systemic breakdown ##
Toshiba: US Unit's Server Has Been Hacked
Negative information boosts impression
Rebekah Brooks arrested in hacking investigation

## Japan ##
Japan nuclear reactor halted over pressure drop
"As a result only 19 of Japan's 54 reactors are now operating. The Ooi shutdown -- to be completed Saturday evening -- will bring the number to 18, with further reactors soon due to shut down for regular checks."
Oi reactor resumption could be months away
Kansai Electric Faces 'Severe' Shortage After Reactor Closures
"Kansai Electric Power Co. will run short of capacity after it halted a reactor yesterday, heightening concerns the nation's utilities won't be able to generate enough power as Japan's summer heat intensifies.
"'Our coverage area was already in a very severe state, and yesterday's shutdown will make things even worse,' Masaki Toratake, a spokesman, said in a telephone interview today. 'We've already been requesting power from other utilities, and will continue to do so.'"
Gov't to discuss electricity shortages in summer this week
Analysis: Japan power sector oil demand may triple
Restart schedule for idled nuclear reactors still in limbo
Films focus on Japan's nuclear flashpoints
Another 84 cows in Fukushima found to have been fed contaminated straw
Radiation concerns for Japan's beef supply intensify
'Nuclear Village' Protester Turns Hero in Japan
Japanese Equities Beating World as Industrial Output Rebounds With Toyota
"Equities in Japan are rising more than any other developed country on speculation earnings will improve as the country recovers from its strongest earthquake."
Gov't to mull using chartered ships to transport SDF in emergency

## China ##
A Must-Read Report On China's Municipal Debt Problem
China's high-speed rail glitches: Racing to make errors?
China sees investment from US, Europe drop
China Real Estate: Blowing The Bubbly Bubble
City 'ants' scratch to endure in big cities

## UK ##
Homes and roads flooded in Inverness and Perth
Defence Secretary wants reserve soldiers 'build-up'
Swindon street lights to be switched off

## US ##
US warns of bombs at Mexico border crossings
Minnesota government shutdown nears an end, but at what cost?
"The Minnesota governor and legislative Republicans say they have a deal to end a government shutdown that began on July 1. But budget experts say the deal is fiscally 'unustainable.'"
Coburn to Offer $9 Trillion Budget-Cut Plan
Republicans edge US nearer debt crisis
One Million Foreclosures Delayed
Bankruptcy on the table for Alabama County: Governor
"Bankruptcy is still a "very strong possibility" for Alabama's Jefferson County, Governor Robert Bentley said on Saturday -- a move that could make for the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history."
Stocks: Investors await earnings deluge

And finally... Lizard Man Reportedly Mauls And Bites Through South Carolina Couple's Car

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