Sunday, October 27, 2013


News Links, October 22-23, 2013

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
US rating must reflect creditor nations' view: Dagong
China Converting U.S. Dollar Debt Holdings Into Gold At Accelerating Rate
Down and out: the French flee a nation in despair
BIITS Replacing BRICs as Emerging Markets No Longer Blanket Buy
Business jet sales to top $18 billion as buyers seek bigger planes
Dysfunctional Global Economy; Can Things Get Worse? Rediscovering the Price of Money
Europe Breakup Forces Mount as Union Relevance Fades
Alasdair Macleod: Currency Crisis Dead Ahead
Peter Schiff: The Collapse Of The Dollar Is Unavoidable
Foreigners Sold U.S. Assets as China Reduces Treasuries
You won't believe what the French are taxing now…
Plunging Greek Wages Crater Q2 Disposable Income By 9.3%, Government Borrowing Rises To Record

## Airline Death Spiral ##
Redundancy pay pushes Cityjet's losses to €208.9m
Lufthansa 2013 profit outlook disappoints, shares hit
The End of the World's Longest Nonstop Flights
ANA to raise fuel surcharges
Japan Airlines announces international fare fuel surcharge
Delta profit soars as more pay higher fares
Airline Bundling: What You Need to Know

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Nigeria, UK, US in Joint Exercise Against Piracy, Crude Oil Theft
Number of Syrian refugees in Turkey exceeds 600,000-Turkish official
Iraq gets Russian arms shipments under landmark $4.4B deal
Iran sees nuclear talks with powers finishing within year: official
China makes global inroads on arms sale
Singh Attacked for Being Weak on China in Pre-Election Visit
Venezuela shoots down two 'hostile' planes
Malaysia to build naval base in disputed South China Sea
Iran Holds Talks With Russia To Boost Military Cooperation
This Lack Of Syrian Aggression Will Not Stand, Man: Saudi's Bandar Bin Sultan Furious At US

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Singapore's mid-life crisis as citizens find their voice

## Energy/resources ##
Must read: Metrics: Replace GDP with Disposable Energy
The first graph should shock anyone into perceiving the distorted view of the world afforded by gross domestic product. Leading up to the crash of 2008, GDP was rising and gives the impression that all is well. But at the same time disposable energy, defined as the amount of energy people can buy with their disposable income, was dropping precipitously. And the next-to-the-last graph indicates that it is still declining quickly. Not a good sign. Disposable energy is of course a function of net energy, whose ongoing decline I have noted often. As net energy declines, the cost of energy rises (keep in mind that some energy production is subsidized and therefore should be even more expensive), and disposable energy decreases. It's a pretty grim picture. In every respect, energy is the key. Cheap, high-net energy makes economic growth (and GDP growth) possible, but expensive, low-net energy is a drag. Rampant money printing and accumulating debt are currently propping up stock prices and GDP, but it's all smoke and mirrors. The dancing party is over, but we have yet to pay the fiddler, who is demanding his due. -- RF
Oil Majors Flock to Morocco, Excited by Offshore Potential
Is Deepwater the Next Oil Bonanza?
More and more oil is offshore. That means lower net energy ever higher prices on the horizon. -- RF
Sino-Indian Rivalry Intensifies over Petroleum Resources Overseas
China and India have actively scoured the planet in their quest to secure hydrocarbons to meet rising domestic energy demand. With few attractive upstream assets available around the world, it is perhaps inevitable that both countries would increasingly end up bidding for the same blocks. Such an outcome only serves to heighten the stakes for the two Asian giants as they attempt to ensure a steady flow of hydrocarbons for their respective countries.
Massive Spending Ahead As Industry Develops US Shale
Now that the land grab of U.S. shale oil and natural gas acreage has ended, the oil and gas industry faces a new question – how it will fund the commercialization of unconventional resources. Cash flow issues have already been seen among oil and gas companies seeking to develop shale, raising questions about financing and how companies will handle spending, according to a panel of industry experts at the Bloomberg Oil & Gas Conference Thursday in Houston.
BHP plans sale to trim down west Texas shale assets
BHP Billiton plans to sell roughly half its oil and gas acreage in the Permian Basin in Texas and New Mexico, an area revived by the shale boom, to focus on its most lucrative assets there.
Dump, dump, dump. The shale hype is starting to subside as reality intrudes. -- RF
BHP Billiton to back away from India exploration projects
A nuclear renaissance or 'totally bats'? (UK)
The high "strike price" means that the U.K. ratepayer is effectively subsidizing the foreign companies and investors which are building the new plant.
Kudankulam: India nuclear plant begins operating
Russia grabs China oil and gas export deals
Only One Consortium Bids for Libra Auction

## Got food? ##
Los Angeles Proposes Banning GMOs
New York's Looming Food Disaster

## Environment/health ##
Sailor's discovery: 'The ocean is dead'
Reef or Hazard? The Fate of Sunken Oil Rigs
To Fix Climate Change, Scientists Turn To Hacking The Earth
'Wind Turbine Syndrome' Blamed for Mysterious Symptoms in Cape Cod Town
Traffic-related air pollution a growing concern in Canada
In Russia's Vast Far East, Timber Thieves Thrive
The Days of Coke, Pepsi and Other Unhealthy [sic] Products Are Dwindling
Australia firefighters prepare for worst as hot weather returns

## Intelligence/propaganda/security/internet/cyberwar ##
Report: NSA swept up 70.3 million French phone records in 30 days
How stores use your phone's WiFi to track your shopping habits
NSA Spied on Mexican Government for Years
Fox News Reportedly Used Fake Commenter Accounts To Rebut Critical Blog Posts
First telematics product launched in Australia
Democracy Under Threat as Media Giants Gobble Up Local TV: Study
Yet Another Privacy Service Has Shut Down to Avoid the Feds
Google announces uProxy: internet censorship avoidance in a browser extension
Meet SIBIOS: Argentina's Massive, Orwellian Biometric Database
Fresh Leak on US Spying: NSA Accessed Mexican President's Email

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
12 Shocking Clues About What America Will Look Like When The Next Great Economic Crisis Strikes
After Westgate, Interpol Chief Ponders 'Armed Citizenry'
Interpol Secretary General Ronald Noble said today the U.S. and the rest of the democratic world is at a security crossroads in the wake of last month's deadly al-Shabab attack at a shopping mall in Nairobi, Kenya – and suggested an answer could be in arming civilians.
Don't Count On Your Cell Phone For Help After The Next Huge Hurricane
A Resource Superpower on the Verge of Total Failure

## Japan ##
Japan September trade deficit hits $9.5 billion
Toxic Overflow of Thousands of Fukushima Tanks Following Heavy Rains
Radioactive leaks top priority at Fukushima: IAEA
Radioactive cesium again detected off coast of Fukushima plant
Japan Mulls Plan for One Operator to Run All Reactors: Energy
Bidders shy away from public works projects
Here we can see signs that the "construction state" is beginning to crumble. Energy and materials cost more, while at the same time there are fewer workers. It's even affecting bidding for construction of Olympic game facilities. -- RF
Chubu Electric proposes 20% pay cut to pave way for rate hike
Japan ruling bloc OKs state secret protection bill

## China ##
Inside The 2013 Forbes China 400: A Record 168 Billionaires
China smog emergency shuts city of 11 million people
China Major Cities Home Prices Surge, Raising Bubble Concerns
Home prices in China's four major cities jumped the most since January 2011, heightening concerns a bubble is forming as the government refrains from introducing more property curbs that would hinder economic growth.
China says Tibet policy 'correct', no turning back
Sizing Up China's Debt Mountain
Hong Kong's Missing Workers Signal Danger for Aging City
China needs big cuts in Iran oil imports to meet 2013 target
China and other importers of Iranian oil have to keep reducing the shipments to win waivers to the U.S. sanctions, but China's intake of Iranian oil is running 1.4 percent higher than last year through the end of September, official customs data showed on Monday.
Hidden Debt Must Still Be Repaid
China central bank may tighten cash supply amid inflation fears

## UK ##
Scotland's Salmond warns future of shuttered refinery in jeopardy
Speaking to BBC Scotland Friday, [First Minister] Salmond said the longer the Ineos Group's Grangemouth refinery remains "idle and cold," the more likely it is the financially troubled plant -- which supplies 70 percent of Scotland's filling stations with fuel -- will be shuttered permanently.
Millions hit as npower raises energy bills by £137
A third major energy supplier, npower, has announced a price increase of around 10pc, affecting three million households.
New nuclear plant 'needed to keep the lights on'
A new nuclear power plant is needed to allow British people to keep watching television and making cups of tea, Ed Davey has insisted, amid claims that the new plant will force up energy prices
Nuclear power station will avoid 'blight' of 30,000 wind turbines, minister says
UK nuclear power enters new age with Hinkley deal - with householders footing the bill
Watch as the massive cost overruns start. -- RF
The Declining State of the UK Energy Sector
UK cyber defence unit 'may include convicted hackers'

## US ##
Study: Nearly 6M youth out of school or work, likely locked into limited prospects as adults
Rising child poverty pushes American dream out of reach for many
Economists see slower hiring, despite skilled-labor need
In the United States of Inequality, CEOs Get 'Astronomical' Pay
All on Top Ten List of Highest Paid CEOs made at least $100 million
S&P 500 logs fourth straight record close as hiring slowdown is seen as keeping stimulus going
Food stamp benefits going down before the holidays
Millions of American families could face a sparse holiday table when food stamps benefits get reduced in November, and that could be just the start of deeper cuts to the program to feed poor families.
Thieves pose as commercial truckers to steal huge cargo loads of food, beverages
To steal huge shipments of valuable cargo, thieves are turning to a deceptively simple tactic: They pose as truckers, load the freight onto their own tractor-trailers and drive away with it. It's an increasingly common form of commercial identity theft that has allowed con men to make off each year with millions of dollars in merchandise, often food and beverages. And experts say the practice is growing so rapidly that it will soon become the most common way to steal freight.
Absent Progressive Uproar, Social Security and Medicare Face Axe
Poll: Nearly half say replace everyone in Congress
Marc Faber Blasts "We Are The Bubble... There Is No Exit Strategy"
Neofeudalism: The Rise of an American Debtcropper System for the Young
JCPuking All The Way To Penneystock Status
Active-shooter incidents have tripled since 2009: Holder
New York has more homeless than it has in decades
For baseball games, Yankee Stadium seats 50,287. If all the homeless people who now live in New York City used the stadium for a gathering, several thousand of them would have to stand.
US Army Leadership Delivers Message of Frustration, Resignation
Why 65 is too young to retire
Treasury Secretary Pleads for Higher Taxes, More Government Spending, Big Farm Bill, No Cuts in Food Stamps
"Peak Bartenders" - After A Record 42 Consecutive Months, Waiters Suffer First Monthly Job Decline

And finally…
7 outrageous things people actually put on their resumes
Is this the stomach-turning truth about what the Neanderthals ate?
Cold Crime: Jell-O Stolen From Work Fridge Sparks Police Call
San Francisco Accidentally Directs Nike Marathon Noise Complaints To Phone Sex Hotline

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