Sunday, February 24, 2013


News Links, February 23-25, 2013

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
RBS India Unit to Cut Jobs as It Closes Retail Business
RBS and Lloyds expected to report significant annual losses
Mammoth debt hangs over next Italian government
Britain's credit rating downgraded from AAA to Aa1
World's Richest Lose $21 Billion as Icahn's Fortune Drops
Former Swiss Billionaire in Crisis to Sell Aston Martin
Flawed F-35 Fighter Too Big to Kill as Lockheed Hooks 45 States
Prince Alwaleed warns of unemployment 'time bomb' in Saudi Arabia
France to focus on spending cuts in 2014: Hollande
Rising property rents lead to exodus from prime Dubai areas
Unions say redundant Telecom workers may leave country (NZ)
"The Council of Trade Unions says workers soon to be made redundant by Telecom will struggle to find employment in New Zealand."
Transpacific to cut 200 jobs (NZ)
"Waste management company Transpacific Industries will axe 200 jobs as it seeks to lower costs amid weakness in its manufacturing and industrial markets."
NZ Post says job cuts needed to stay competitive
Worries for rural delivery over post service cuts (NZ)
Are 'extractive elites' sucking the life out of Canada's economy?
"Politicians in the developed world are preoccupied with dividing up a diminishing pie, not a growing one."
Vietnam Inflation Rate Eases as Economy Struggles to Revive
"Vietnam's inflation eased in February as domestic consumption struggled to rebound after a credit crunch that slowed economic growth to a 13-year low."

## Airline Death Spiral ##
U.S. air travelers will feel budget cut effects quickly: union
"U.S. air travelers will face increased delays and potentially higher prices if cuts to the U.S. Transportation Department's budget go into effect on March 1 as part of planned across-the-board government reductions, the National Air Traffic Controllers Association said on Friday."
Poland's LOT airline working on rescue plan
The End Of Cheap Airfare
Federal Budget Cuts Could Affect Local Airports
Japan identifies cause of Dreamliner fuel leak
Air France-KLM net loss widens to €1.2 billion
The new airport hassle: Wheelchair fakers

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Russia leases planes to Cuba, writes off Soviet debt
"Russia will lease eight jets worth $650 million to its Cold War- era ally Cuba and will partially write off the country's multi-billion-dollar, Soviet-era debt under agreements signed during Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev's visit to Havana on Thursday."
NATO considers post-2014 Afghan force of 8,000-12,000
Five killed in Islamist car bomb attacks in north Mali
France's military operation in Mali in 'final phase'
Obama Dispatches 100 US Troops To Niger To "Support Predator Drone Base"
IRAN-IRAQ: Pipeline to Syria Ups Ante in Proxy War with Qatar
Tokyo Annoys Seoul by Sending Envoy to Takeshima Party
Iran says it has brought down a foreign spy drone
"Iran's Revolutionary Guards have brought down a foreign surveillance drone during a military exercise, the official Islamic Republic News Agency said on Saturday."
Spiral of Karachi killings widens Pakistan's sectarian divide
Horse meat: trade is a 'front for money laundering'
Activists launch campaign against 'autonomous weapons': Killer robots must be stopped
Chinese vessel enters Japan's territorial waters
"A Chinese fisheries patrol vessel sailed inside Japanese territorial waters near the disputed Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea for the second consecutive day on Sunday, the Japan Coast Guard said."

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Israeli forces, Palestinians clash throughout West Bank
Bulgaria government resignation unlikely to stem protests, for now
Tunisian secularists protest against new Islamist PM
Tens of thousands in Spain protest economic policy, corruption
In Egypt, protesters adopt nonviolent strategy
2 Killed as Bangladesh Police, Protesters Clash
Egypt Food Manufacturer Closes Business After Workers Protest
"Faragalla Group, an Egyptian food producer, said it shut down its factories yesterday after workers stormed the complex to demand higher pay. The plants, located near Alexandria, halted production after they were raided by more than 200 workers, some of them carrying swords."
Stripped of 'Country of Origin' Label, US Agrees to Sell Tear Gas to Egypt
Occupations in Rome Defend the Rights of Commoners

## Energy/resources ##
Govt 'asleep at wheel' on Solid Energy
"Solid Energy is currently in crisis talks with Treasury and its bankers over ballooning debts now totalling $389 million."
Iran appears to advance in construction of Arak nuclear plant
America: The Worldwide Leader In Wasting Energy
NASA: A Nuclear Reactor To Replace Your Water Heater
Tajikistan Negotiating to Resolve Water Feud, Ambassador Says
Threats posed by diesel shortage (Egypt)
Shortage of aviation fuel lingers (Ghana)
Manufacturers plan power cut back (Thailand)
Iran says 16 more nuke power plants coming
Iran Announces New Uranium Deposits: Don't Panic!
"Iran has announced some new uranium finds in the country. The real story though is that there's very little indeed to this story. The amount they're claiming to have is trivial, less that the fertiliser industry has lying around Florida for example."

## Got food? ##
British horse carcasses tainted with bute thought to have been eaten in France
Give horsemeat-tainted food to poor - German minister
Horse meat found in Italian frozen foods
We Have All Eaten Horse, Like It or Not
"For years, there's been horse meat in hamburgers, lasagnas, raviolis, tortellinis, sausages, prepared spaghetti bolognese, bottled bolognese sauce, chili con carne, shepherd's pie, moussaka, many other "meat dishes," frozen and not, cheap and expensive."
USDA: Food prices likely to rise 3-4 percent this year

## Lifestyle Solutions ##
Family Has Been Living Without Money for Two Years, By Choice
Already many people in the world are living with little or no money, but not by choice. -- RF
Fight a world food shortage: Learn to love leftovers
$aving Bucks through the centuries-old practice of bartering

## Environment/health ##
Fracking has a Lesson to Learn from the Sinking City
Siberian permafrost thaw warning sparked by cave data
Changing snowfall patterns predicted
UN report finds 'new proof' of link between endocrine disruptors and common diseases
Wind farms will create more carbon dioxide, say scientists
"Thousands of Britain's wind turbines will create more greenhouse gases than they save, according to potentially devastating scientific research to be published later this year."

## Intelligence/propaganda/security/internet/cyberwar ##
India says warned of bombs that killed 16 in IT hub Hyderabad
13,753 Gov't Requests for Google E-Mail Data in 2012, Most Without a Warrant
As Police Drones Take Off, Washington State Pushes Back
Corporate victims of Chinese hackers speak out
Hackers take aim at key U.S. infrastructure
Is America prepared for a 'cyber Pearl Harbor?'
The near impossible battle against hackers everywhere
"Security officers and their consultants say they are overwhelmed. The attacks are not only from China, which Washington has long accused of spying on U.S. companies, many emanate from Russia, Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and Western countries. Perpetrators range from elite military units to organized criminal rings to activist teenagers." back online after getting hacked

## Systemic breakdown ##
Honk Kong apartments so small they can only be shot from above [PHOTOS]
And yet governments, businesses, and economists insist we need more people. -- RF
Capitalism is so broken it can't be fixed: Saving capitalism will not save America

## Japan ##
Abe Tells Obama Japan Will Boost Its Defense
Abe says will not tolerate islands challenge
U.S. X-band radar to be installed at ASDF base
Japan's maximum Iran oil shipping insurance to rise by 4% in 2013-14: sources
Memo To Japan: It Is Going To Be A Cold, Expensive Winter
In yen's fall, the end of Japan's higher living standards
Tight-fisted firms deal blow to Abe's revival plan
Tough times leave Osaka day laborers homeless, jobless and on welfare
Survey: No nuclear plants meet new safety standards

## China ##
Why A China Crash May Be Imminent
Crisis looms as local government debt to mature this year
"China's local government debt crisis has been getting worse as national statistics show that 53% of local government debt will be due by the end of 2013, when local governments enter a peak period for repaying loans."
What the 'Unofficial' Numbers Say About China's Economy
China acknowledges 'cancer villages'
Property prices rise in more big cities
China's aluminum stockpiles reach new high: expert
H.K. Doubles Stamp Duty on All Properties on Bubble Risks
China's countrymen struggling with a 'sick' Mother Earth
China to form carrier battle groups in five years: general

## UK ##
UK loses top AAA credit rating for first time since 1978
UK Suffers Blow, Pound Seen Under New Pressure
Turning off Britain's Lights Could Save £1.192 Billion a Year
Fuel Shortage Fears As BP Tanker Strike Begins

## US ##
Pentagon grounds F-35 fleet after engine crack found
Forbes: Detroit most miserable U.S. city
Radioactive waste leaking from 6 tanks at Washington state nuclear site
Bankrupt San Bernardino Hires Twice Bankrupt Manager for Annual Salary of $222,000
At $47,802, Oscar swag bags cheapest in 5 years
Your Stolen iPhone May Be in China or Africa
La. coast facing grim reality: Seas rising faster than predictions
Virtually ALL of the Big Banks' Profits Come from Taxpayer Bailouts and Subsidies
Fattened Margins Seen Shrinking 40% at Banks: Mortgages
Montana legislator introduces bill to give corporations right to vote
Half of Detroit Properties Have Not Paid Taxes; Update on Detroit Bankruptcy
More states consider ban on credit card surcharges

And finally…
Why speaking English can make you poor when you retire
Man sues parents for not loving him enough
A Dramatic Way To Uncork The Bubbly: Use A Sword
Includes videos showing proper technique! -- RF

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