Thursday, October 03, 2013


News Links, October 3-4, 2013

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
ADB slashes emerging Asia forecast on weakness in China, India and US stimulus jitters
Central European profit plunge hits Tesco's recovery drive
The True Size of the Shadow Banking System Revealed (Spoiler: Humongous)
Pensions, Unemployment, Interest on Public Debt, Consume 54% of Spain's Budget; Debt Hits 100% of GDP; Expect Plan "B" or Plan "C"
India's October gold imports seen picking up sharply
How China is taking over the world, one gold bar at a time (includes infographic)
Infant formula market to China virtually wiped out - exporter (NZ)
ADB cuts Asia-Pacific economies' growth forecast
Portugal passes latest eurozone bailout test
Don't play with fire on U.S. debt, say policymakers worldwide
Pimco's Gross: Low interest rates may persist for decades
Soros: European Union Remains at Risk of Collapse
Jim Rogers Warns US Stock Investors "Be Careful... You're In A Fool's Paradise"
Spain Blames Typo For Adding $13 Billion To Public Debt
The new, lower, revised figures drop Spain's public debt from 99.8 percent of its total economic output to 98.9 percent, the outlet notes.

## Airline Death Spiral ##
Lufthansa Sees Low-Cost Success as Main-Brand Revamp Costs Climb
Deutsche Lufthansa AG (LHA), Europe's second-largest airline, said losses at the Germanwings discount unit will shrink this year while costs for upgrading cabins and lounges will top 500 million euros ($682 million) through 2015.
Madrid Airport May Open Iberia-Exclusive Terminal to Other Carriers
Cutbacks at Iberia could force Madrid's Barajas airport to allow other airlines to use the terminal previously reserved for the exclusive use of the Spanish flag carrier and its Oneworld alliance partners, Spain's industry minister said on Thursday.

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Iranian cyber warfare commander shot dead in suspected assassination
The head of Iran's cyber warfare programme has been shot dead, triggering further accusations that outside powers are carrying out targeted assassinations of key figures in the country's security apparatus.
US dialogue with Iran neutralizes Israeli threat to take military action
President Barack Obama's decision to open a dialogue with Iran's new president appears to have robbed Israel of a key asset in its campaign to prevent the Islamic Republic from developing a nuclear weapon: the threat of unilaterally attacking Iranian nuclear facilities.
As Spoiler to US/Iran Talks, Israel's Netanyahu Doesn't Disappoint
Israel Forming New Gulf Alliance to Attack Iran
Russia charges Greenpeace activists with piracy
Obama Quietly Okays Military Aid to Countries That Use Child Soldiers
Russian Embassy in Libya comes under fire, attack repelled
Pentagon developing sub to launch air, underwater drones
Report: Egypt's army planning to attack targets in Gaza
U.S., Japan, S Korea to hold joint naval drills
U.S. Global Hawks to spy on North Korea from Japan

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Ukraine police fire tear gas to disperse protest in Kiev
Police use tear gas on a teachers' demo in Rio
Protests against government continue in Sudan

## Energy/resources ##
Libya's oil sector faces long-term decline amid anarchy
Oil Supplies: The Problem of Field Decline (Infographic)
Record Oil Outputs in Saudi Arabia Fail to Ease Shortage Anxiety
Saudi Arabia, along with OPEC neighbors Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates, exported a record high of crude oil this August. Despite pumping out 10.2 million barrels per day, the fastest rate in 32 years, Saudi Arabia was unable to offset OPEC's 0.8 percent decrease in oil production, attributed largely to instability in Libya and tough sanctions on Iran. As a number of OPEC countries face stagnant or falling production and oil prices creep steadily upwards, the question of whether Saudi Arabia can offset further shortages is more pressing than ever.
Alaska Hunts Oil as Arctic Damage Shows Most Change From Climate
Jellyfish Shutdown the World's Largest Nuclear Power Plant
Southeast Asia's net oil imports to more than double by 2035-IEA
Foreign investment in the oil sands have dropped off a cliff since Nexen takeover
Peak oil and unaffordable fuel subsidies in Sudan
Oil Extraction Tax Cut
Russia introduced new tax breaks this week, encouraging oil firms to explore hard-to-reach undersea fields, in the hope of unlocking new reserves as the country approaches full production capacity from its dwindling oil deposits in western Siberia.
Our Oil Problems are Not Over!
Now we are faced with what looks like an unsolvable problem. We need a cheap oil substitute, yesterday. The stories we heard saying, "Substitutes will work when the oil price rises high enough," were a bunch of nonsense.
Sweden Looks to Import Garbage for Energy
In addition to the major problem already pointed out (the system feeds on the detritus of petroleum civilization), there is the matter of disposing the toxic ash left after incineration. -- RF

## Got food? ##
UN: World failing to feed its people
Citrus disease takes hold of U.S. fruit trees
Several corn ear rots possible this year
Corn Rebounds From Three-Year Low as U.S. Rain to Delay Harvest

## Environment/health ##
Radioactivity found in fracking waste water in Pennsylvania
Pollution near high-volume roadways said risk in much of U.S.
Health of oceans 'declining fast'
Bees' foraging for flowers 'hampered by diesel exhaust'
Spain Suffers from Hundreds of Earthquakes Caused by Offshore Drilling; Largest Quake is Magnitude 4.2; Citizens Complain of Cracks and Tremors Whipping Their Homes

## Intelligence/propaganda/security/internet/cyberwar ##
NSA chief says agency does not track US social media, but did test tracking US cellphones
'The End of Global Privacy': Greenwald Talks NSA
BitCoin Plunges Following US Government Seizure Of Silk Road Website, "Dread Pirate Roberts" In Custody
US Cyber Command: Documents Reveal Pentagon Launching Covert Cyber Attacks
'Psychopaths': GOP Lawmaker, Former NSA Chief Joke About Putting Snowden on 'Kill List'
Silk Road collected 9.5 million bitcoin—and only 11.75 million exist
GCHQ faces legal challenge in European court over online privacy

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
Have We Reached Peak Government?
And there you have it. We have arrived at the point where dysfunction is the norm. Increasing or even maintaining the current level of energy throughput has become impossible. Skyrocketing debt is an attempt to compensate for too-expensive energy. It's all downhill from here. -- RF
Government Shutdowns Threaten To Become The New Normal
When Ephemeralization is Hard to Tell from Catabolic Collapse
While it's not my intent to negate all of this, I present it as a typical example of feel-good Green Bean thinking. It seems the writer doesn't realize that much of the legacy infrastructure makes the industrial/technological lifestyle possible. More important is that technology does not equal energy, which we have seen again with Shell's recent pullout from oil shale, and the increasingly grim prospects for shale gas: All that technology cannot beat geology. The relationship between technology and energy has always been the other way around: energy begets technology. That brings me to the remark about communication satellites replacing undersea cables. The much smaller weight of the satellites belies the huge amount of embodied energy they contain. It's the same reason that a small jet fighter costs so much: It's packed with high-tech parts that required much energy to develop and manufacture. Don't let Green Beans lull you into the false belief that technology will solve our problems and everything will be OK. -- RF

## Japan ##
More high carbon fuel burn to follow Japan nuclear closure
Japan's Fukushima nuclear plant operator says another tank leaked toxic water
Fukushima Watch: Stemming One Leak Causes Another
No decision yet on disposal sites for contaminated waste in 5 prefectures
Tens of thousands of tons of contaminated waste resulting from the Fukushima nuclear disaster still remain in fields and elsewhere in the affected region, with no final disposal sites found yet.
Households to take hit from tax hike
The consumption tax increase next April will hit every household in Japan hard, with many people's financial future hanging on whether their wages rise enough to offset the impact of the hike, experts say.
BOJ money supply hits new record high in September
U.S., Japan to deploy new radar, drones in next year
Japan, U.S. to revise defense guidelines by end of 2014
9 power companies plan stable electricity supplies for winter
Nine of the nation's 10 major electric companies are likely to ensure a stable power supply this winter by putting off regular inspections of thermal power generation plants to spring at the earliest and trading power with other suppliers, according to their reports submitted to the industry ministry.

## China ##
China's drive to clean up thriving but dirty recycling business jolts global industry

## UK ##
GP care in England 'faces funds catastrophe amid cuts'
It's a bug's life as expert warns council cutbacks will lead to 'pest plagues'
Britain faces a dramatic increases in "pest plagues" and rat infestations as councils axe their pest control teams to cope with Government cutbacks, experts warned today.
Post Office workers to strike in 12th walkout since Easter
British support for hydraulic fracking drops
David Cameron: Young people under 25 would not be able to claim employment or housing benefits under Tory government
Just trying to break this to you gently… in the future there will be no pensions, so healthcare, no other entitlements. You're on your own. -- RF
NHS faces unexpected £500m cuts, say hospitals
More workers are 'close to breaking point': Randstad

## US ##
Ron Paul: "The Country Is Bankrupt... The People Are Being Bamboozled"
US Banks Stuffing ATMs With 20-30% More Cash In Case Of Panicked Withdrawals
Bankruptcy Plans for Big Banks Released
One thing all these plans have in common is a sale of assets. But in the event of some kind of catastrophic meltdown, potential buyers could be very scarce.
United Technologies says it may furlough more than 5K employees due to government shutdown
Paramount layoff: Studio giant cuts 5 percent of workforce
Heidi Crebo-Rediker, Former State Department Chief Economist, Joins CFR as Senior Fellow
Social Security "Lock Box" Revisited (and Its Relation to the Government Shutdown)
In case you didn't know it, the money is gone. -- RF
CBO Recommends Taxes Raised "Immediately and Permanently" to Fund Social Security
You see? The situation is already getting desperate. -- RF
The Rise of a Semi-employed America
Student Loan Default Rates Skyrocket to the Highest Level in 18 Years
Gold And Silver Spike, Recover All Shutdown Losses As Stocks Tumble
Enabled By ZIRP and QE, Banksters Continue Looting Instead of Building Capital
'It's going to be really tough': Tales from the shutdown
New York City Opera Files for Bankruptcy
Government Shutdown Not Slowing Down Warmongers
These are America's disappearing jobs

And finally…
Man who desired to be eaten by a 'large, dominant woman' a baffling case for Toronto psychiatric hospital doctors
Chicago restaurant garnishes burger with communion wafer, red wine sauce

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