Sunday, January 29, 2012


News Links, January 30, 2012

## Global economic meltdown ##
Eurozone crisis: angry Greeks condemn EU plot to control its finances
"German plan to install commissioner in Athens with veto powers over the Greek budget dismissed as 'laughable'"
Spend now to speed growth, Germans told
"Christine Lagarde, the head of the International Monetary Fund, yesterday heaped more pressure on Germany over its handling of the eurozone crisis, effectively calling on Berlin to increase state spending in order to restore growth to the rest of the single currency bloc."
Greece Politely Declines German Annexation Demands
Largest Central Banks Now Hold Over 15 Trillion in Fictitious Capital
Fragility and Recovery of Digital Storage Supply Chains
ArcelorMittal cuts production, jobs in east Europe
"A deepening sovereign debt crisis in the euro zone and slowing economic growth are forcing a number of steelmakers to shut or reduce steel capacity."
Dubai has 13,349 hotel rooms in pipeline
Dubai is another mega-crash waiting to happen. -- RF

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Iran says to stop some oil sales, inspectors visit
Syria troops battle to retake Damascus suburbs
"Around 2,000 Syrian troops backed by tanks launched an assault to retake Damascus suburbs from rebels on Sunday, activists said, a day after the Arab League suspended its monitoring mission in Syria because of worsening violence."
Gunmen attack police station in Nigeria's Kano
"Gunmen bombed a police station on Sunday outside Nigeria's second city Kano, the police and witnesses said, leading to an hour of gunbattles in a region plagued by attacks from Islamist sect Boko Haram."
Crime On Nigeria's Waterways Alarming
Iraq's Sunni-backed bloc to end parliament boycott
Afghanistan, Taliban to Talk in Saudi Arabia
Israeli drone the size of a Boeing 737 crashes
New Floating Base Ships Coming for U.S. Navy
India's Military adventure against China
China paper says punish Philippines over US ties

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
What's next for Occupy Wall Street? Activists target foreclosure crisis.
"As the protest movement heads into spring, Occupy Wall Street activists are interrupting foreclosure auctions and helping families re-occupy their homes."
Flash-grenades & tear-gas: 300 arrested at Occupy Oakland
Oakland assesses City Hall damage after Occupy break-in
This is despicable behavior, but I did say that mobs and riots will come to the US. -- RF
Clashes erupt in Cairo during anti-army protest
"Hundreds of Egyptian protesters demanding an immediate end to military rule clashed on Sunday with rivals in civilian clothes outside central Cairo's state media building, the same place where 25 people were killed in a demonstration in October."
Putin critics take to cars to demand fair elections

## Energy/resources ##
Global refinery surplus narrowest since 2007 on Hovensa closure
South Sudan demands border deal before restarts oil
Coal comes cheap but production does not (Dubai)
Coal Starts Shutting Down Across US
"As a result of new air quality regulations, many coal-fired power plants are preparing to shut down across the Midwest"
Thwarted on US oil pipeline, Canada looks to China
Fuel shortages continue throughout Egypt
Iran offers Lebanon reduced-price electricity
41 power related projects could not get single penny in seven months (Pakistan)

## Infrastructure scavenging ##
Illegal Detroit scavengers use machines that help build city to tear it down
"The two documentarians who made the Oscar-nominated Jesus Camp, Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady, have turned their cameras on Detroit, feeling it 'may well be a harbinger of things to come for the rest of the country.' In an excerpt of their new documentary, called Dismantling Detroit, Ewing and Grady look at a group of men who use American metal, in the form of vans and pickup trucks, to dismantle American metal, in the form of Detroit buildings."
Also watch the must-see video clip. -- RF

## Got food? ##
Bill Gates Warns Countries Need To Embrace GMOs Or Citizens Will Starve
Ukraine export curbs 'possible' too, says CWB
Food costs soar in New Zealand

## Environment/health ##
Pesticides blamed for bee decline
"Compelling new evidence from the US government's top bee expert that modern pesticides may be a major cause of collapsing bee populations led to calls yesterday for the chemicals to be banned."
Antibiotics Prove Powerless as Super-Germs Spread
"Antibiotics were once the wonder drug. Now, however, an increasing number of highly resistant -- and deadly -- bacteria are spreading around the world. The killer bugs often originate in factory farms, where animals are treated whether they are sick or not."
Penn. town blames contaminated water on fracking

## Intelligence/security/internet/systemic breakdown ##
How to easily circumvent Twitter's censorship
Consumer Reports Cautions Against High-Tech Phone Systems That May Fail in Power Outage Situations
"Likely motivated to cut home expenses, more and more consumers are switching over to VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) and fiber optic phone systems. However, unlike traditional copper lines, these newer phone systems may lack the ability to maintain service indefinitely, which can leave consumers without access to friends, family or 911 in emergency situations."

## Japan ##
Japan CDS show bonds not pricing in fiscal risk
Frozen water causes leakages at Fukushima nuclear power plant
"TEPCO said leakages were found at 14 locations, including the cooling system for the spent fuel pool at the No. 4 reactor, NTV reported. Cooling operations were suspended for 100 minutes on Sunday morning. Leakages were also found at the pump that sends water to the reactor cooling system."
No end in sight for Japan's deflation

## China ##
Beware of China's housing bubble
"The housing frenzy has driven prices so high, so fast, that a crash on the scale of the real estate collapse in Japan in the 1990s is a virtual certainty in China"

## UK ##
U.K. To Develop Short-Range Weapon To Protect Warships

## US ##
Crumbling infrastructure: Pittsburgh area's aging locks and dams approach 'scary' status
State Emergency Managers Usher in IMF-style Austerity and Soviet-style Governance
Erin Brockovich reps ordered off school grounds
"Representatives of environmental crusader Erin Brockovich and an accompanying group of reporters were ordered off the grounds of Le Roy Junior-Senior High School on Saturday in an episode connected to a cluster of students there with unusual neurological symptoms."
The shrinking private equity world
As shortages increase, drugmakers feel the heat
Prices jump in food, transportation, other everyday costs
California community colleges prepare to ration their offerings
"Community college leaders say it has become necessary to ration classroom seats like water in a drought."

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