Tuesday, April 23, 2013


News Links, April 23-24, 2013

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
The global economy is losing steam
Manufacturing data stokes fears of global spring swoon
"Major economies in North America, Europe and Asia lost some momentum this month, business surveys showed on Tuesday, a development that may see central banks intensify efforts to revive a flagging global recovery."
Eurozone manufacturing slows further
Eurozone Debt Levels Reach Record High - Eurostat
Spain's population shrinks as immigrants flee economic crisis
Spanish deficit at 10.6% of GDP: EU data
French Economy Contracts Again
German downturn bodes ill for eurozone
Era of austerity has run its course, EU says
Caterpillar misses, cuts view, but says mining has bottomed
Consumer debt soars in Asia
"Consumer debt in Asia, outside Japan, is soaring, especially in China where there are already 320 million active credit card accounts, data shows."
The ever-expanding debt bubble is essential to prop up the Ponzi economy. -- RF
China Hot Market Without Profit Seen in Pretty Lady Card
And here we can see how the Chinese are being roped into credit card debt. Just charge it! -- RF
Paris Hit by Property Freeze as Taxes Deter Buyers
Feverish buying demolishes gold inventories in Asia
Shortage of gold bars and coins in Dubai, says World Gold Council
Is a Key Pillar of India's Economy in Jeopardy?
"The pullback in private consumption, the bedrock of India's economy that makes up around 60 percent of gross domestic product (GDP), is posing a threat to the country's fledgling recovery, said economists."
A Visual History Of All Asset Bubbles
100% of Egyptians feel price increase and 86% expect another wave soon, reveals TNS study

## Airline Death Spiral ##
Air Canada sees wider operating loss, shares plunge
Passengers face delays of 2 hours or more at some airports due to air traffic staff shortages
Dreamliner set to fly in a week as Boeing fixes battery
Dreamliner: Boeing 'may never find battery fault cause'
Too Early to Tell What Caused 787 Dreamliner Battery Problems: Boeing
Feds delay policy to let passengers carry small knives, bats, other sports equipment on planes
Lufthansa cancels 99% of flights because of daylong strike
Changing Your United Flight? That'll Be $200 (At Least)
Where have all the airlines gone?
Will This New Airline Be an Earnings Juggernaut?
Survey: 40% Of Travelers Would Get Weighed At Airport, Other 60% Just Laugh In Response
Delta Air Lines says gov't spending cuts hurting April revenue; posts small 1Q profit

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Hagel: Israel has unilateral right to strike Iran
Hosting U.S. defense chief, Israel hints at patience on Iran
No bunker-buster bomb in Israel's US arms deal
'Jordan opens skies for IAF drones flying to Syria'
China rejects claims its troops entered Indian territory
Japanese nationalists approach disputed islands as tensions rise
Iraqi raid on Sunni protest camp sparks deadly clashes, intensifying fears of wider unrest
First littoral combat ship arrives in Singapore
8 Chinese ships enter Japan waters, tailing nationalists near Senkakus
Japan PM vows to use force to expel any Chinese landing on disputed islands
Japan, U.S. to conduct joint military drill in California

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Squid Fishermen Caught in Tentacles of 'Abenomics'

## Energy/resources ##
Europe Faces a Crisis in Energy Costs
S.Africa's Eskom may resort to blackouts this winter
"South African power utility Eskom said it was prepared to introduce rolling blackouts this winter in some parts of the grid to prevent a complete system collapse, which would inflict far greater damage on the economy."
Nigeria hands over electricity assets to 15 private firms
"Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan signed deals on Monday handing over state electricity assets to 15 bidding companies, a milestone in a privatisation process meant to end decades of power blackouts."
Norway to Open First New Oil, Gas Acreage Since 1994
"The Norwegian government will propose this week to open the southeastern Barents Sea for oil activity, the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy said Monday, the first new oil acreage in nearly two decades."
Prices blow an ill wind for turbines
"Prices for wind turbines have fallen by a third in the past four years, the US industry association has said, putting pressure on manufacturers' margins even while demand soared."
Solar panel makers aren't the only ones having money problems. Whether fossil fuels or renewables, if you want to dance, you've got to pay the fiddler. But that is bad news for industrial society, which runs on the Free Lunch Principle. -- RF
UK launches sale of uranium enrichment firm Urenco
Egypt says Russia to help revive nuclear programme
Shale Boom is Real Enough
There is no mention that shale drilling is unprofitable. Last I checked, unprofitable enterprises must be subsidized, and that means someone is losing money. The idea is perhaps that eventually those doing the subsidizing will make their money back, but recall that drillers are going for the sweet spots first. Not a good sign. -- RF
North America Seen Sending Record Wood to Europe for Use as Fuel
FPCCI concerned over water shortage in industrial zones (Pakistan)
Protracted impediments hold back power plant expansions (Indonesia)
Oil products: Shortage of gas, fuel hits Libreville (Gabon)
Sunshine Oilsands project cost forecast rises (Canada)
"Changes, inflation, delays add $28M to thermal oilsands project"
Venezuela declares 90-day electricity "emergency"
Slow is scary if France quits nuclear: state institute
"A long slow retreat from nuclear power in France or indecision over policy could be very risky as skilled staff retire and young people reject careers with an uncertain future, the state-funded atomic safety research institute said."
Renewables Investment Seen Tripling Amid Supply Glut
The Landscape of Energy

## Got food? ##
Grain handlers wary of toxin lingering in '12 U.S. corn harvest
Food price hikes raise concerns in Iran
Earth's pollinating insects face risks that threaten world food supply
North Korea Asks Mongolia for Food Aid
Prices of food increase 2.7% globally in 2012
Tanzania: 47 Districts Face Food Shortage
Agricultural Biodiversity in Trouble as Gene Giants Spread Their Reach

## Lifestyle Solutions ##
Want To Forage In Your City? There's A Map For That

## Environment/health ##
Plastic buildup becomes environmental nightmare
Tar Sands Is Worse Than You Can Imagine: Incredible Images You Have to See
Wildlife groups: Chemical killing seabirds in southwest England
Hong Kong virologists: Bird flu cases may be double that reported
Traffic pollution, noise linked to heart diseases: Study
For India's drought-hit states, on-track monsoon may be too late
Radiation from North Korea's Feb. nuke test detected in Japan
The global shortage in health workers is at crisis point
Bedbugs invade hospitals (US)

## Intelligence/propaganda/security/internet/cyberwar ##
State-backed data spies hunt industrial secrets
Boston Search Shines Spotlight On Surveillance Cameras
Seven New Tools That Can Stop a Bomb in a Backpack
Canada thwarts "al Qaeda-supported" passenger train plot
Chechen Terrorists and The Neocons
The 11 Most Mystifying Things the Tsarnaev Brothers Did
Boston Marathon Attacks, Chechnya and Oil – the Hidden U.S. Connection
The Boston Bombings in Context: How the FBI Fosters, Funds and Equips American Terrorists
Facebook to build data center near Des Moines, Iowa
AP Twitter feed hacked -- no attack at White House
Bloomberg Says Interpretation of Constitution Will 'Have to Change' After Boston Bombing
Schwab Website Hit by Cyberattack

## Systemic breakdown/collapse ##
The 10 Fastest Growing Megacities In The World
Many people mistakenly see megacities as vibrant centers of growth and innovation, which appears to be so as long as they are able to maintain the high energy throughput needed to stave off the buildup of entropy. As energy flows decline, however, the increase in entropy (wastes, failing infrastructure, disorder, etc.) will transform "vibrant centers of growth and innovation" into hell. Be seeing you on the other side. -- RF
America: #1 In Fear, Stress, Anger, Divorce, Obesity, Anti-Depressants, Etc.
'Pakistan State Oil near bankruptcy due to energy debt crisis'
Entering a Resource-Shock World: How Resource Scarcity and Climate Change Could Produce a Global Explosion
The Perennial Shortage Of Engineers
Big Pharma Exit: Who's Fighting the Superbugs?
"A looming shortage of antibiotic drugs threatens to derail efforts to fight the so called superbugs, according to a new report. The Infectious Diseases Society of America, (IDSA) released a study last week stating that with just four of the big pharma firms researching any kind of antibiotics and so few new drugs being developed, the dangers posed by normal bacteria and the superbugs resistant to medicines contribute to a major health hazard to the public."
C.B. infrastructure crumbling fast (Canada)

## Japan ##
Fukushima nuclear cooling system offline for 3rd time in 5 weeks
Claims against Tepco can run long
"The Cabinet endorsed a bill Tuesday that would allow people affected by the Fukushima nuclear crisis to seek damages from Tokyo Electric Power Co. after the statute of limitations runs out after three years."
Fukushima nuclear plant shutdown may take Japan longer than predicted 40 years, warns U.N. agency
Forty hears from now, Japan's economy will have long since been reduced to ruins, and there will be no money to spend on cleaning up this mess. Have a nice nuclear day! -- RF
IAEA: Japan nuclear site cleanup may take more than 40 years, plant needs more reliable system
Japan joins ugly contest with tsunami of money
Kawasaki Heavy, Mitsui Shipbuilding mull merger
S Korea, China blast Japan over Yasukuni visits
MMC to cut domestic capacity by 20%
Panasonic may cut up to 600 jobs
Shimane Prefecture to extend fishing rights around Takeshima
Japanese who work at level of developing nations will be paid similarly
A cool trick which could fuel the global "race to the bottom." -- RF

## China ##
China PMI barely Above Contraction; Chinese Stocks Slump as Manufacturing Slows
China manufacturing expansion slows
China bird flu death toll rises to 22
China Hasn't "Seen This Gold Rush In 20 Years"
China Continues To Pour Money Into Interior Infrastructure
No Tee Time for Japanese Shows Depth of Toyota China Slump: Cars

## UK ##
UK plans privatisation to help cut debt -report
Toddlers becoming so addicted to iPads they require therapy
Street light switch-off saves council £320,000 every year

## US ##
US manufacturing growth worst in six months
U.S. Flash PMI Signals Serious Growth Contraction
I've said again and again that there will be no recovery. Suck it up. -- RF
Emergency unemployment benefits cut after April 28
Arizona Set To Use Gold & Silver As Currency
US Mint Halts Sales, Depletes Inventory Of One-Tenth Ounce Gold Coins
Mississippi barge traffic snarled by floods, accidents
Floods to sideline Mississippi River barges at least another week
US hospitals send hundreds of immigrant patients back to home countries to curb cost of care
U.S. States Turn Against Renewable Energy as Gas Plunges
DoD Request Would Redirect $7.5B
"The Pentagon is preparing to ask Congress for permission to shift billions of dollars within its already reduced fiscal 2013 budget primarily to pay for increased war costs, but is still looking for ways to fill a $15 billion operating shortfall."
Oil Boom Raises Electric Rates in Parts of Texas
"Texas is often called the energy capital of America, so it might come as a surprise that the oil and gas boom has substantially driven electric prices up in some parts of the state. And in those same areas, prices are expected to spike again this summer."
U.S. Midwest grid expects to have enough power for summer
Neofeudalism marches on: A Rise in Wealth for the Wealthy; Declines for the Lower 93%
Silicon Valley Wealth Disparity Continues to Grow
Minn. school district gets bulletproof whiteboards
600 New Condo Units Unsold In Greater Downtown Miami As Of Q1 2013
Fitch Warns About Bank Earnings for the Rest of 2013

And finally…
Worst First Day Ever? TV Anchor Fired After Profane Debut
Home for high-fliers: ultimate bird house with own swimming pool

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