Sunday, January 08, 2012


News Links, January 9, 2012

## Global economic meltdown ##
Merkel, Sarkozy Return to Work on Euro Rescue With Meeting in Berlin Today
Euro Suffers Longest Losing Streak Since 2010; Record High Speculative Short Positions; Big Specs vs. Currency Movements; Not Timing Devices (Mish)
Asia to become new world economic centre: FPCCI But...
East Asian Economies Slump
"The eurozone's worsening problems are affecting the export-dominated economies of East Asia hard. The 17-nation zone contracted in Q4, and it will probably shrink this quarter as well. 'We expect a fall in GDP of about 1.0 per cent this year and an even sharper decline in 2013,' said Jennifer McKeown at Capital Economics. Unemployment is at a record high, retail sales are falling, and consumer and business confidence is headed in the wrong direction."
Barclays: Rate of aluminum smelter cuts increasing
The grim reaper punctures Ontario's fiscal fantasies
"On current trends, the provincial treasury can't achieve a balanced budget by its 2017-2018 deadline. Without a course correction, Ontario risks a downgraded credit rating and ever higher servicing costs on a debt that will keep soaring over the next five years to well in excess of $300 billion."
Potash Corp. plans 4-week shutdown at Allan plant
'Inventory adjustment' causes weeklong shutdown at Chrysler's Windsor Assembly Plant
Hungary's hard-pressed workforce struggles with unaffordable mortgages
Venezuela's annual inflation at 27.6 percent

## Fault lines/flashpoints/military ##
India to pay for Iran crude in rupees
Iran 'enriches uranium at new site'
SocGen: It Would Be 'Easy' For Iran To Shut Down The Strait Of Hormuz, And Oil Would Surge To $150-$200
Iran Has Ability to Block Strait of Hormuz, U.S. General Dempsey Tells CBS
American, British, Israeli and Iranian Warships Sailing Towards Confrontation
Iran cracks down on film industry
Iranian leader seeks support in South America
Iran and Russia drop dollar for their own currencies in bilateral trade
Arabs urge Syria to halt violence, no call on U.N.
Top Syrian General Defects With 50 Troops
Report: Russian naval force arrives at Syria port in 'show of solidarity'
Iraq asks Kurds to hand over Sunni vice president
US reliance on Afghan paramilitaries in rural areas worries European allies
Manila protests Chinese ships' presence in Spratlys
Iraq: A country in shambles
"Despite promises made for improvements, Iraq's economy and infrastructure are still a disaster."

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Second Tunisian man sets self on fire in 2 days
Israel charges five settlers with army base rampage
Nigeria faces mass strike and protests over discontinued state fuel subsidy
'Occupy Nigeria' emerges ahead of mass strike
Armed protestors make their way to Bilawal House (Pakistan)
"PROTEST demonstrations in different parts of the country have become an order of the day but what happened in Karachi on Friday was very alarming. Furious people, many of them armed, clashed with the police during a protest rally that was making its way towards Bilawal House, which is considered to be seat of the power. Police resorted to tear gas shelling and put barriers to block the march during which exchange of fire also took place."
As economies teeter, leaders in Europe warn against extreme populism

## Energy/resources ##
Nigerian Fuel Price Strike May Disrupt Shell Oil Production, Close Ports
Oil Rises in New York on Iran Tension Amid Delays to Middle East Pipeline
Hugo Chavez has reason to smile
Water Shortage Affecting Industries (India)
The Dormant Hydro-Power Industry
Valley in darkness, tourists planning to leave (Kashmir)
Troubled Syria suffers from shortage of diesel
U.S. families pay a record $4,200 for gasoline in 2011
China's hunger for coal leaves dent in Pennsylvania's supply
DOE sees rationing as US acts vs Iran (Philippines)
Mindanao faces power shortage in 2012

## Infrastructure scavenging ##
Thieves Defy Death to Tap Metal Price Boom as U.K. Cracks Down

## Environment/health ##
Damning New Letter from NY State Insider: 'Hydraulic Fracturing as It's Practiced Today Will Contaminate Our Aquifers'

## Intelligence/security/internet/systemic breakdown ##
Hackers expose defence and intelligence officials in US and UK
"Thousands of British email addresses and encrypted passwords, including those of defence, intelligence and police officials as well as politicians and Nato advisers, have been revealed on the internet following a security breach by hackers."
Strategies For Survival: Are You Going To Be A Refugee Or Evacuee?

## Japan ##
IMF stress-tests Japanese banks
Japanese carbon steel export dropped by 16pct YoY in Nov
2 towns at risk of disappearing / Okuma, Futaba face uncertain future due to nearby crippled N-plant
Govt Request For Temporary Storage Site Displeases Fukushima Pref
Concern about aging reactors grows
University degree and full-employee-status no protection against joblessness in Japan

## China ##
China loan growth quickens
"China's banks ratcheted up lending in the last month of 2011 on the back of stronger money supply, reinforcing perceptions that the central bank is gently easing policy to cushion the impact of the global economic slowdown."
China: The rise of the 'Precious Snowflakes'
"First there were the Little Emperors, the often chubby and spoiled first generation of children born under China's one-child policy. Now the Precious Snowflakes have emerged - a generation so coddled some cannot even tie their own shoelaces."

## UK ##
Cut the working week to a maximum of 20 hours, urge top economists
Pensioners 'will work into 70s'
For a long time I've been advising everyone to kiss "retirement" goodbye. It's all downhill from here. -- RF

## US ##
New Jersey Will Pay You $1000 To Destroy The 2nd Amendment
Welcome the informant society, perhaps modeled on that of North Korea. -- RF
Natural gas, oil boom spurs sand mining in Midwest
Boeing shutdown will ripple across region
Soldiers on Lockdown After 'Sensitive' Military Equipment is Stolen from Washington Base
Occupy protesters in Vegas plan to take over foreclosed homes
Six arrested in latest Occupy Oakland march
Here's A Look At America's Achievement Gap In Education
Moving evicted tenants is 'lucrative' business
"Property owners across the country bear a burden from the recession: paying a fortune in moving and storage costs to evict tenants who fail to pay their rent.
"But the owners' losses are a boon for the companies that clear out homes. Their business has skyrocketed, 'making money out of people's misery,' said David Robinson, an attorney for Legal Services NYC, which helps low-income New Yorkers navigate the eviction process."
US Holiday Electronics Sales Drop 5.9 Percent
IRS estimate: 17 percent of taxes owed went unpaid
Bullard Says New Quantitative Easing Unlikely
Americans to Take DIY Approach in 2012

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