Friday, April 26, 2013

 

News Links, April 25-26, 2013

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
Ageing deepens debt-laden Europe's economic woes
Automakers are getting crushed in Europe
ECB says ditching austerity would not help euro zone
Unemployment misery deepens in Spain and Greece
Spain's GDP Contracts at 2% Annualized Rate in First Quarter
Spanish economy collapsing with unemployment rate topping 27%
Spain unemployment hits record high
French unemployment at new high
Former US Treasury Official - Fed Desperate To Stop Collapse
Canada Post 'staring down' billion dollar loss by 2020, report says
Santander bank profits fall 26% to 1.2bn euros
Electrolux 1Q performance hit by European crisis
SocGen Repeats $10,000 Target as Central Banks Buy Gold, ETFs Sell, Indian Dealers Run Out
Gold jumps the most in almost 10 months
Daimler profits down 60 percent as earnings sag in slow European economy
Report lays out plans to reorganize debt-plagued French rail system
The Worldwide Economy Is Fine, But The Sales Reps Are Lazy - Or Something
With the ECB Easing Inevitable, Periphery Yields Hit New Lows
Abu Dhabi ranked among top cities for new malls
"Abu Dhabi has more 800,000 sqm of shopping malls under development, placing the UAE capital among the world's top ten cities in terms of retail space pipeline."
Bangladesh building collapse reminds us of hidden cost of cheap clothes
Egypt's growing black market a sign of economic woes

## Airline Death Spiral ##
Oof! Airline Fees Rise Yet Again: At Least $200 to Change a Flight
Senate mulls competing bills to ease air-travel delays
Failure haunts Berlin ghost airport
Iranian airline SAHA halts operation due to outdated fleet
Cargolux loses out in 2012
"Luxembourg headquartered B747 freighter operator Cargolux International Airlines has reported a net loss of USD35.1 million for financial year 2012."
US Airways CEO Predicts Doomsday and Investors Shrug
"On the company's Q1 earnings call on Tuesday, US Airways CEO Doug Parker predicted massive dislocation for his company – and the industry as a whole – if FAA furloughs remain in place."
Aer Lingus to seek 100 redundancies
Hawaiian Airlines loses $17.1 million in first quarter and trims some routes
United Continental posts 1Q loss
Man kicked off plane for 'being too fat'

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
China Plans Next Generation of Carriers as Sea Disputes Broaden
"China unveiled plans to build more aircraft carriers after commissioning its first last year, as the country extends its influence amid territorial disputes with neighbors including Japan and Vietnam."
US and France Intervene in Mali To Protect Land and Resource Grabs, Not Because of Al Qeda
China calls Japan-U.S. island drill "provocative"
Japan, China to Hold Talks to Prevent Sea Conflict
Iraq on edge after raid fuels deadly Sunni unrest
How will China React to Gazprom Prospecting in Vietnamese Waters?
IDF shoots down drone off Haifa coast flying from Lebanon
Hezbollah denies sending drone shot by Israel
Israeli army to halt use of white phosphorous
US says Syrian government has twice used chemical weapons, 'red line' Assad told not to cross
U.N. Security Council approves creation of Mali peacekeeping force
Pipeline attack in northern Iraq halts oil exports
"Unknown gunmen bombed a major oil pipeline in northern Iraq, halting the country's oil exports to the port of Ceyhan, south-eastern Mediterranean coast of Turkey, a police source said Thursday."
The US Perpetrates a Boston Bombing Weekly in Pakistan, Yemen & Afghanistan

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Deadly clashes in China's Xinjiang
China 'terrorists' trapped police: state media
Tanzania riots over cashew nut payments
Teachers rampage against reforms in Guerrero state, Mexico

## Energy/resources ##
Saudi Arabia's Shale Gas Hopes Dashed Due to Lack of Water
Indonesian Police Warn Against Fuel Hoarding Ahead of Price Hike
Face It: Automakers Relegating EVs To Perpetual Niche Status
Sri Lanka utility to show $355 mln loss although tariffs up -govt
"Sri Lanka's state-run electricity board will show a roughly 45 billion rupee ($355 million) loss in 2013, a government spokesman said, although it has raised tariffs in response to International Monetary Fund (IMF) requests."
Grid battery storage remains elusive
How much are businesses losing due to brownouts (Philippines)
More Transparency Needed to End Kyrgyzstan Energy Crisis
'Peak Fossil Fuels' Is Closer Than You Think: BNEF
This mistaken, misleading, and feel-good Bloomberg article is saying that technology is liberating lots of oil and gas so peak oil won't happen, but renewables will replace them, and — everyone believes — the good times will continue to roll. But in fact, world oil production has hardly changed since 2005, despite vastly increased investment and drilling activity. Thus it's a safe bet that global net energy is declining, especially in view of the marginal profitability of some sources, such as oil sands, and the unprofitability of others, such as shale drilling. Additionally, the industrial infrastructure and fossil fuels are needed to make all that renewable energy equipment (not to mention just about everything else). Don't fall for the propaganda and hoopla. Everything is falling apart because of declining net energy. -- RF
Oil's Big Five Squeezed by Crude Drop as Spending Soars: Energy
Here, also from Bloomberg, is an article showing why peak oil is real. It's exactly as I have pointed out repeatedly: prices must rise to help drillers cover their increasing costs, but at the same time high energy prices are strangling the global economy. Additionally, because of declining net energy, even if more barrels of oil are produced, they don't necessarily translate into more energy for society to use. Savvy people can see where this is leading, and it ain't to a Glorious Technological Greenie Future. -- RF
Gazprom warns Europeans against selling gas to Ukraine
Chevron's Big Foot Deepwater Platform Arrives in Texas
Ice Gas: A Step Closer to Commercial Production
BP predicts growth in global demand for energy resources by a third
Egypt to issue schedule next month for gradual fuel subsidy cuts
Water shortage getting worse in capital (Pakistan)
Switzerland's Government Denies Natural Gas Agreement With Iran
India to get LNG from the U.S.

## Got food? ##
Diesel to Climb as Record Planting Eats at Inventories (US)
"Diesel prices are surging in the U.S. Midwest as farmers prepare to plant a record amount of crops this season, eating into below-average fuel supplies."
Possible diesel shortage could hurt Saskatchewan farmers (Canada)
Farmers warn hundreds will walk off the land (Australia)
"Farmers have warned that hundreds of Wheatbelt grain growers will be lost to the industry by this time next year unless the State Government reconsiders an emergency aid package announced yesterday."
Farmers facing feed shortage crisis (Northern Ireland)
"Farmers, who battled to save their stock during last month's Spring Blizzard, have been hit with a fresh crisis."
Romans cut down on bread as crisis hits
Argentine farming disarray seen to affect output
North Korean Soldiers Drop Weapons To Pick Up Farming Tools
Food shortage at Pretoria hospital
Experts: Zimbabwe Food Reserves Severely Depleted
Child Hunger Is Exploding In Greece – And 14 Signs That It Is Starting To Happen In America Too
Food poisoning on rise in US, survey finds
U.S. GMO food labeling drive has biotech industry biting back
If Climate Change and Population Growth Are Going to Push Food Prices Up by 50%, What Happens When you Add in Peak Oil?
Cucumber Salmonella Outbreak Sickens 73 People In 18 States
Blame the Weather for Rising Corn Prices

## Environment/health ##
Fracking Truck Sets Off Radiation Alarm At Landfill
"A truck carrying drill cuttings from a hydraulic fracturing pad in the Marcellus Shale was rejected by a Pennsylvania landfill Friday after it set off a radiation alarm, according to published reports. The truck was emitting gamma radiation from radium 226 at almost ten times the level permitted at the landfill."
Life in a Real Nuclear Wasteland
"Strange illnesses in one of the most contaminated towns in the world challenge what we think we know about the dangers of radioactivity."
Collapse of Chernobyl nuke plant building attributed to sloppy repair work, aging
Pictures: Extreme Algae Blooms Expanding Worldwide
Poorer nations face an unwanted European import: obesity
WHO: Bird-to-human infections easier with new flu
Taiwan reports first bird flu case outside China
Three Taipei hospital staff show symptoms after H7N9 contact
New bird flu strain 'one of most lethal' influenza viruses
How are humans going to become extinct?
England Prepares Mass-Vaccination for Measles
China's pollution blamed for Japan's dying trees
'Urgent need' to remove space debris
Australian Federal Government to Prevent Fracking Around the Great Barrier Reef

## Intelligence/propaganda/security/internet/cyberwar ##
Boston: Orwell does America
Boston Terror Narrative Starts Falling Apart
Another Boston Bombing Mystery: Who is @Al_FirdausiA?
U.S. had more tips on Boston suspect; Congress asks questions
Planning for Boston Marathon security included bombing scenario
Boston bombs: CIA placed Tamerlan Tsarnaev on main US terrorism watch list
"The main US counterterrorism agency added Tamerlan Tsarnaev to its watch list at the request of the CIA more than a year before the bombings in Boston, it has emerged."
Blaming US-Born Cleric Anwar Al-Awlaki for Inspiring Boston Bombing
NYPD chief: Bombing suspects may have been headed for NYC to party
White Chechens Open New Vistas of Repression in America
Russia warned US of bomber 'multiple times' after FBI interview
Ministry of Truth makes Boston bombing suspect disappear
Dzhokhar Tsarnaev Unarmed At Time Of Boat "Shootout"
`New York City was next': Police say Boston bomb suspects planned to attack Times Square
I'd take this story with a grain of BS. -- RF
Heavy police presence in NY's Times Square
Media Narrative: Witnessing Boston's Mass Casualty Event
FBI's fake website entrapping terrorist wannabe got critics
Australian police arrest senior member of LulzSec hacking group
Analysis: Iran's unlikely al Qaeda ties: fluid, murky and deteriorating
News Summary: Online privacy rules changing (US)
Mandiant: No Drop in Chinese Hacking Despite Talk
"More than two months after computer-security firm Mandiant Corp. accused the Chinese military of using cyberattacks to target U.S. companies, a company official said there has been no change in the large number of Chinese attacks on U.S. companies it has observed."
WikiLeaks wins Visa contractor case, Valitor must lift blockade
Google reports content takedown requests at a record high
Israel Airport Security 'Allowed to Read Tourists' Email'
"Israeli security officials at Ben Gurion airport are legally allowed to demand access to tourists' email accounts and deny them entry if they refuse, the country's top legal official said on Wednesday."
Canada train 'al-Qaeda plot' suspects challenge case

## Systemic breakdown/collapse ##
America The Fallen: 24 Signs That Our Once Proud Cities Are Turning Into Poverty-Stricken Hellholes
It's exactly as I have been saying. And the buildup of entropy is just getting started. -- RF
Ruing our rundown railways (New Zealand)
Making Room: Can Smaller Apartments Help New York City Grow?
Why Finding A TB Test Got Hard
Another chapter in the ongoing saga of drug shortages. -- RF
Greece's Economic Collapse led to Rise in Suicide, Murder Cases

## Japan ##
Fukushima nuclear plant struggling with rat problem
TEPCO shuts down cooling system for spent nuclear fuel pool at Fukushima plant
OECD says Japan should pay down debt
Repairing Japan's Highways To Cost Up To 10 trillion yen
Of course the money will never be found, and highways will just continue to deteriorate. And this is just talking about expressways. Imagine the bill for all other roads. -- RF
Japan to introduce countermeasures against H7N9
Japan court rejects demand to evacuate Fukushima children
Fukushima's 'contaminated' rice still in storage two years on
Japanese Seek Refuge in Bullion as Yen Slumps, Inflation Looms
Japan turns back to coal-fired power plants
Japan consumer prices fall for 5th month in a row
So far the BoJ has a lot of new yen floating around, but little inflation to show for its effort. -- RF

## China ##
Overcrowding on farms behind mystery of China's floating pigs
H7N9 Bird Flu Cases In China Rise To 108; Shandong Province Has First Illness
Too much Ritz: Luxury hotels outstrip demand in China

## UK ##
Britain defies triple-dip recession with 0.3% GDP growth
First Utility to increase price of dual fuel tariff by average of 18.6%
350,000 people now rely on food banks
Disabled face losing homes under benefit cutbacks
A matter of confidence: UK in low spirits as official data may put country back in recession
Number of pupils in private schools drops amid rising fees
Cash-strapped colleges 'axing courses to save money'

## US ##
$2 Trillion Underground Economy May Be Recovery's Savior
Investors Face Potential Municipal Bond Armageddon
"The Securities and Exchange Commission is worried that municipal bankruptcies, combined with an expected spike in interest rates, means that the muni bond market could face "Armageddon," according to a report last week by SEC commissioner Dan Gallagher."
Natural gas price more than doubles from 2012 low
Why Should I Care That No One's Reading Dzhokhar Tsarnaev His Miranda Rights?
Ohio's Roads, Bridges Get Grade of C-
Orders for US long-lasting factory goods fall sharply on drop in aircraft demand
Senate cracks down on social media 'flash mobs'
"After Chicago attacks, Ill. Senate OKs tougher penalties for 'flash mobs' using social media"
"The battlefield is the United States of America"
In Florida, a food-stamp recruiter deals with wrenching choices
As she weighs a presidential bid, Clinton set to cash in
'I'm living cheque by cheque': Chicago retail and fast food workers strike over wages
Waitresses Stuck at $2.13 Hourly Minimum for 22 Years
Fire shows modern cars burn different than old ones
Four years after financial crisis, more cautious banking sector cuts tens of thousands of jobs
Still In The Middle Class, But Standing On A Banana Peel
Fed balance sheet grows to record again in latest week
Urban warfare exercise in Tinley Park frightens some residents
How Ohio's Debtors' Prisons Are Ruining Lives and Costing Communities (PDF)
To Catch Up With E-tail, Tools to Track Shoppers in the Store
The return of the prodigal interest only loan: The appearance of safety is bringing back our favorite mortgages.
10 investing rules for the coming bond crash
Eight Retailers That Will Close the Most Stores
The Rise in Popularity of the AR-15 Among Women




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