Sunday, April 29, 2012


News Links, April 29, 2012

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
Hyundai Steel Profit Falls 39% on Weak Demand, Prices
"Hyundai Steel Co. (004020), South Korea's second-biggest steelmaker, posted a lower-than-estimated 39 percent drop in first-quarter profit after waning demand for the metal used in cars, ships and houses dragged prices lower."
Europe now second biggest market using Chinese currency for settlements
"Europe has now emerged as the second-biggest area using the reminbi for cross-border transaction settlements. Bankers and commodity traders believe the yuan can be used to settle trade transactions involving gold and bulk commodities in 10 to 20 years as long as the Chinese government continues liberalizing currency policies."
Resetting retirement: Getting used to a longer working life (Canada)
I've said it many times, and I'll say it again: "Retirement" and pensions are disappearing, and the Little People will work until they drop, as they always have. Resign yourself to it. -- RF
ECB bond buy programme dormant as Spain woes mount

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Al Qaeda now incapable of 9/11-scale attack: U.S. officials
Phew, what a relief! And US officials should know. -- RF
U.S. signals major shift on Iran nuclear program
The sanctions are not working as well as expected, and the US is looking for a face-saving out. -- RF
Israel ex-spy warns against "messianic" war on Iran
"A former Israeli spymaster has branded the country's leaders as 'messianic' and unfit to tackle the Iranian nuclear program, in the strongest criticism from a security veteran of threats to launch a pre-emptive war."
Suicide bomb rocks Damascus as thousands protest
"Tens of thousands protested across Syria as a deadly suicide bombing rocked the capital, killing 11 people and fuelling growing scepticism over the prospects of a UN-backed peace plan."
Sadr 'against' fall of current Iraqi government
"Powerful Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr opposes toppling the Iraqi government, but discussed not renewing the premier's mandate during a visit to Kurdistan, Sadr Movement officials said on Friday."
Saudi recalls ambassador, shuts embassy in Egypt
U.S. looks to South America for security partners
"In these days of shrinking defense budgets, the U.S. is looking to its southern neighbors to help monitor and protect the Asia Pacific region in the years ahead."
'Dynamic' Japan-U.S. military cooperation sends message to China
"A revised plan on the realignment of U.S. forces in Japan would expand Japan-U.S. defense cooperation in Asia and the Pacific in an effort to keep China's military might in check."

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Tear gas fired at Malaysia reform protesters
"Riot police fired tear gas and water cannon on Saturday at a crowd of up to 25,000 protesters who had converged on the center of the Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur to demand changes to an electoral system."
Suicides have Greeks on edge before election
"In a country that has had one of the lowest suicide rates in the world, a surge in the number of suicides in the wake of an economic crisis has shocked and gripped the Mediterranean nation - and its media - before a May 6 election."
U.S. Gov't Making Preperations for Expected Major Social Unrest Next Year

## Energy/resources ##
Pakistan Issues Tenders for Building Gas Pipeline with Iran

## Infrastructure scavenging ##
East County cable theft disrupts internet, cell phone service
"Thieves cut and stole lengths of underground cables in the East County highlands early Tuesday, knocking out data-transmission lines used by two sheriff's stations as well as the U.S. Department of Defense, authorities reported."

## Got food? ##
New Yorkers branch into 'beyond organic' urban fish farming
The Threats From Genetically Modified Foods

## Environment/health ##
Concrete Degradation at New Hampshire, Nuclear Plant
Reef shark populations in steep decline: Study

## Japan ##
Sharp Posts Record Loss, Expects To Stay In Red
Rolling blackouts possible this summer
Tokyo govt to establish 'Senkaku team'
"The Tokyo metropolitan government will soon establish a team of officials under the direct supervision of Gov. Shintaro Ishihara that will prepare to send a landing team to the Senkaku Islands, Ishihara has announced."
Metro government raising funds in quest to purchase Senkaku Islands
"The Tokyo Metropolitan Government began fundraising Friday for purchasing the Senkaku Islands, Gov. Shintaro Ishihara said."
Foreign buyers snap up land / Survey shows many people use Japanese names to hide acquisitions
"Regarding such deals, some people believe water resources are being targeted by foreign buyers."

## China ##
Astounded by how much Copper China is storing: Standard Chartered
"The amount of copper being stored by China is astounding, says a recent report by Standard Chartered states while adding that even low key warehouses were filled with copper."

## UK ##
More people turning to food banks
"A record number of people are turning to charities to help them feed their families."
Petrol and diesel thefts on rise in Wolverhampton
"Rising fuel prices could be behind a spate of diesel and petrol thefts at service stations in the West Midlands, according to police."
Sunday Times Rich List shows UK's wealthiest defy recession
"The UK's richest people have defied the double-dip recession to become even richer over the past year, according to the annual Sunday Times Rich List."

## US ##
When Muni Bonds Run Dry
"Local governments, worried about their existing finances, are putting off building new schools or other big-ticket projects."
25 Horrible Statistics About The U.S. Economy That Barack Obama Does Not Want You To Know
Actually, Ron Paul Is Secretly Winning A Lot More Delegates Than You Think
The No Retirement Plan: 25% Expect to Work Till 80 (Greater than Life Expectancy); What About the Expected Retirement of Nuclear Power Plants? (Mish)
Bill Black: Our System is So Flawed That Fraud is Mathematically Guaranteed (Chris Martenson)
Biofuel mandates could close more refineries, officials warn

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