Thursday, January 05, 2012

 

News Links, January 6, 2012

## Global economic meltdown ##
Papademos Warns Greeks Economic Collapse Looms Without Cuts
European Deathwish Exposed: Greek Bailout Package Delayed By Three Months
Fresh Data Damp Hopes on Europe
"Doubts over Europe's strategy to overcome its debt woes re-emerged Thursday amid fresh evidence that the region is in recession, reinforced by concerns about the fragility of its banks."
Europe's Debt Woes Return to Haunt Global Markets
EURUSD Dips Below 1.28 As All Hell Breaks Loose In Italian Financials
Hungary Marches Down Hyperinflation Path; What About the US?
Austerity czar sees pain ahead in Ontario (Canada)
"A government-commissioned review of Ontario's public services is set to deliver a grim diagnosis of the province's financial prospects, and propose a sweeping overhaul of the way it spends money."
Indian economy under risk, Rupee may weaken to 55-56: Macquire
"With India's total external outstanding debt more than doubling to $327 billion in the last 5 years, the Indian economy is becoming increasingly exposed to external vulnerabilities, a report by Macquaire states."
Asia Stocks Fall on Europe
"Chinese stocks finished at their lowest level in nearly three years to lead broad losses among major Asian markets Thursday, as worries about the property sector and tight liquidity conditions hit investor sentiment."
Alcoa to Close or Curtail 531,000 Metric Tons of Smelting Capacity
Kenya: Our Economy Needs Fast Radical Surgery
Low European Tech Spending Hurts Global IT
"Global spending on information technology will rise at the slowest pace in three years in 2012 as Europeans, worried about the region's sovereign debt crisis, cut back on investments, research firm Gartner said."
US ethylene producers plan shutdowns for Q1-2012
Seoul hints at stricter controls on capital flight
France sells 8B euros of debt, 10-year yield rises

## Fault lines/flashpoints/military ##
Bombs target Iraqi Shi'ites, kill at least 73
Iraq Shi'ite militia says ready to lay down weapons
"The leader of a Shi'ite militia which carried out some of the most prominent attacks on foreigners during the Iraq war, said the group will lay down its weapons and is prepared to join the political process.
"'This stage of the military conflict between the Iraqi armed resistance and the occupation forces is over, with a distinct, historic Iraqi victory and a distinct, historic U.S. failure,' Qais al-Khazali told Reuters in an interview on Wednesday."
Israel, US to hold largest ever missile defense exercise. Thousands of US soldiers will be deployed in Israel.
Iran: Turkey is best place for nuclear talks
UK warns Iran over oil passageway threat
US, EU Wage Economic War on Iran; Greece Lifts Objection to Oil Embargo; Warmongers United; Will Cooler Heads Prevail? (Mish)
New Pentagon strategy stresses Asia, cyber, drones
America's "Mini Air Force": Long-range drones directed against China
Pakistani Taliban say kill 15 soldiers, vow further "revenge"
"The Pakistani Taliban have killed 15 kidnapped troops in revenge for military operations against them near the Afghan border, a Taliban spokesman said Thursday, vowing further such attacks."
Afghan president demands control of Bagram prison
India rejoins the nuclear submarine league
Wave of shootings baffle Swedish police
"A new wave of execution-style shootings in Sweden's third largest city has left police puzzled, raising concerns that Malmo has become a magnet for gang-related killings."

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
'Occupy DC' seeks court order to avert eviction
Occupy activists barred from Oakland City Hall
Police Break up Fuel Protest in North Nigeria
Railway employees hold protest, demand cash salaries (Pakistan)
"The protesters also torched the effigy of the chairman Railway and also set tyres on fire."

## Energy/resources ##
French nuclear plants told to prepare for disasters
"France must invest billions of euros to improve the safety systems of its nuclear facilities so they can withstand the kind of extreme shocks that triggered in Fukushima the worst nuclear accident in 25 years, the nuclear watchdog ASN said on Tuesday."
France Stands By Nuclear Power, Will Spend $13 Billion For Safety Upgrades
On the sly, Chinese fuel in Nepal
India oil demand jumps 11.2% y/y in November on record diesel sales
Oil clings to new plateau
Saudi Arabia Ready to Fill Any Oil Supply Gap: Source
South Africa cannot give up on coal, say big electricity users
Heat fear for the poor (Australia)
"VICTORIANS are living in sweat boxes, fleeing to shopping centres or sitting in cold baths over summer to cope with soaring power bills.
"Welfare agencies fear growing numbers of householders are too scared to turn on airconditioners when it is sweltering because of crippling price rises."
Survey reveals consumer interest in electric vehicles continues to slide

## Got food? ##
In Africa, using ants and termites to increase crop yields

## Intelligence/security/internet/systemic breakdown ##
Iran clamps down on internet use
"Restrictions on cybercafes and plans to launch national internet prompt fears users could be cut off from world wide web"
US pressured Spain to implement online piracy law, leaked files shows
"US ambassador threatened Spain with 'retaliation actions' if the country did not pass tough new Sopa-style internet piracy laws"

## Japan ##
Record $736k paid for single tuna fish in Japan
Japan Braces for Loss of Iranian Oil
"In addition to forcing Japan to find other sources of oil, analysts say, the loss of the Iranian supply will likely drive up prices—a chilling prospect for Japan, already grappling with rising fuel costs."
Pressure on Iran puts Tokyo in a bind
"'We are not considering banning imports,' a Foreign Ministry official said, indicating the government is wary of stepping up pressure on Iran in any coordinated action.
"An official at the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said an embargo on Iranian oil would lead to a sharp rise in crude oil prices and added the U.S. must consider the negative impact of such a development on the global economy."
Gov't to test 'variable pricing' electricity system
Nippon Steel faces ¥84.6 billion loss
Kashiwa stops operation of incinerator again as radioactive ash fills up storage
6 civilian Japanese ports labeled essential by U.S. Navy
"The United States Navy has designated six civilian harbors in Japan as essential ports in the case of a military emergency on the Korean Peninsula or elsewhere nearby, multiple Japanese and U.S. military sources have told the Mainichi."
Japan auto sales down 15% in 2011
As radiation fears persist, ties unravel in society
Blowing bubbles: Construction booming, but where are the tenants?

## China ##
Hong Kong Business Activity Continues Slide
China Seeks to Boost Consumption, Chen Says
"China will roll out measures to boost consumption this year as it strives to meet challenges posed by a global slowdown, Commerce Minister Chen Deming said."
That will make energy and commodities really affordable to everyone. -- RF
China's Property Slowdown Spreads to Other Sectors (MarketWatch video)

## UK ##
British doctors decry healthcare rationing
Whooping cough cases increase in England and Wales
Storms leave thousands without power across England

## US ##
Here We Go Again: US $25 Million Away From Debt Ceiling Breach
New York governor urges mandatory DNA samples
"New York's governor on Wednesday proposed making the state the first in the country to take mandatory DNA samples from anyone convicted of a crime, including relatively lesser offenses."
Doctors going broke
Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Is Safe, NRC And Ohio Operators Insist
"Federal regulators along with the operators of nuclear plant in Ohio want to assure critics that it's safe to run a reactor despite the discovery of cracks in its concrete shell."
34 Shocking Facts About U.S. Debt That Should Set America On Fire With Anger
The decline of the American public good
"Much of what's called 'public' is increasingly a private good paid for by users, and the rest has become so shoddy that that those who can afford to find private alternatives."
Harder for Americans to Rise From Lower Rungs
Job cuts down in December, but up for year
Renter Nation Rages On As New Reality
Hey, what happened to Dubya's "ownership society"? -- RF
Bailout concerns mounting for federal housing agency
Pepsi Mulls Job, Pension Cuts: Report
Holiday Week Gasoline Demand Plunges To Lowest On Record




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