Tuesday, February 04, 2014


News Links, February 4-5, 2014

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
Europe on the hunt for 'zombie banks'
European Stocks Decline for Third Day Amid Global Plunge
Goldman Warns Global Slowdown Getting "More Serious"
Rubber Reaches 16-Month Low as China Manufacturing Growth Slows
Record S&P 500 Momentum Unwinding as China Quashes Euphoria
The Dow Has Already Fallen More Than 1000 Points From The Peak Of The Market
KPN to Cut Up to 2,000 Jobs as Profits Miss Estimates
Foreign exchange allegations 'as bad as Libor', says regulator
S&P downgrades Puerto Rico debt to junk status
Spain's 'black' economy worth 25 percent of GDP
Portuguese Debt About to Implode? What About Spain?
Asia betting big on 'casino-omics' for tourism growth
Currency crisis at Chinese banks 'could trigger global meltdown'
Prepare For A Shortage Of Physical Gold
Giant Sucking Sound? Emerging-Markets Fiasco To Topple European Banks
Bill Gross: 'Era of getting rich quickly is over'

## Airline Death Spiral ##
A guide to airline fees
Poland's LOT aborts Dreamliner flight after computer malfunction
American Airlines dropping Charlotte-Rio de Janeiro route
Airline-Pilot Shortage Arrives Ahead of Schedule
Airline drops flights to small cities in the region
Great Lakes Airlines is dropping air service to six smaller cities around the region, blaming the service cuts on an industry-wide pilot shortage.
Frigid January cost air passengers $2.5 billion

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Which countries are now spending most on defence?
Israel's defense industry boosts UAV sales, eyes unmanned subs
EU Ambassador Warns Israel of Isolation if Talks Fail
Yemen's capital hit by series of explosions, kidnappings
Japan questions whether it can still rely on U.S. alliance
Afghanistan's Karzai in secret talks with Taliban
Meet the U.S. Allies – Saudi Arabia Passes Draconian, Medieval Laws to Crush Dissent
Asia fuels rise in global defense spending

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Thai protesters move to downtown Bangkok in bid to topple PM
Brazil shopping malls become centers of controversy
Brazilian police challenge Rousseff and threaten to strike during the World Cup
Only four weeks away from the World Cup and in a climate of growing social unrest Brazil police unions are threatening the  government of President Dilma Rousseff with a national strike.

## Energy/resources ##
Brazil hit by sporadic power failures in record heat
Sao Paulo Biggest Water-Supply System May Run Dry Within 45 Days
Spain cuts 2014 power remuneration and raises tariffs
The Spanish government has cut disbursements for electricity distributors while raising the fixed tariffs that consumers pay for the amount of electricity contracted, in a move to reduce a large deficit in the power system.
Egypt forecasts gas shortage next fiscal year
Egypt's energy woes are likely to worsen in the next fiscal year as gas production fails to meet surging domestic demand, according to government estimates.
WA grid may become first big victim of "death spiral" (Australia)
Many Green Beans are going to be unpleasantly surprised when they realize that renewables won't run industrial society. And it's ironic that renewables are partly responsible for grid collapse. -- RF
Surcharge will cause 'total collapse' of German solar industry, AS Solar chief claims
An executive at AS Solar has strongly criticised the new Germany energy minister's plans to reform the country's Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG), warning that a "total collapse" of the German solar industry can be expected under the new legislation.
US trying to prevent oil deal between Russia and Iran
Solar energy progress comes at a price (UAE)
Concern grows over possibility of a massive power surge
Whether caused by solar flares or terrorists, a major electromagnetic pulse could fry the electric grid and cause massive disruption, an increasing number of observers say.
Wood-burning homes face fuel shortage (Canada)
Asians concerned about future of energy: study
Statoil 'to cut 100 staff'
Statoil is reportedly eliminating another 100 positions in further job cuts at the Norwegian state-owned oil giant as it is squeezed by rising costs.
Oil Boom Is Stock Bust for Petrobras as Capex Saps Cash
The investment burden coupled with inflation-fighting fuel subsidies is making Petrobras the most indebted oil producer, the biggest burner of net cash and a sell for investors including Banca Intermobiliare SpA.
Libya says bandits disrupt oil from Sharara field

## Infrastructure scavenging ##
L.A. Thieves Are Jacking up Your Car For an Easy Score
Football club's matches under threat after goalposts are stolen

## Got food? ##
Africa Sahel belt region faces 'desperate food crisis'
Total ban on GM food production mulled in Russia
How to Build and Stock a Pantry
Growing Insects: Farmers Can
Help to Bring Back Pollinators

## Environment/health ##
Swarms of Earthquakes Shake Up Shale Gas Fields
Cruise virus outbreak one of worst in 20 years, CDC says
China's Guangdong Province Reports H7N9 Avian Influenza Death
Egypt reports 16 swine flu deaths
California drought said putting groundwater supplies at risk
West Coast Is "On Track for Having the Worst Drought In 500 Years"
Starving hives: Pesticides cause bees to collect 57% less pollen, study says
14 Alkaline Foods and Drinks for Optimal Health
In Pollution Battle, Seoul Targets BBQs, Spas
Report: Tar Sands Mining Pollution Far Worse Than Industry Reports
Tens of Thousands of Tons of Coal Ash Spilling Into N.C. River
Duke Energy coal plant disaster sends arsenic, mercury, lead, boron and other toxic heavy metals pouring into Dan River
New cancer cases worldwide expected to skyrocket
New Evidence That Sugar Is Harming Our Hearts
Climate change could increase storm risk to world's coastal regions

## Intelligence/propaganda/security/internet/cyberwar ##
New York Times Wikipedia edits raise conflict of interest questions
Judges Poised to Hand U.S. Spies the Keys to the Internet
Former O'Hare TSA Agent Spills Secrets
Microsoft, Facebook, Google and Yahoo release US surveillance requests

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
You Can Buy A House For One Dollar Or Less In Economically Depressed Cities All Over America
Damaged rural roads could be abandoned, warn councils
Some small rural roads in bad disrepair could be abandoned without more funding, English councils have warned.

## Japan ##
Crazy Abenomics Orgy In Japan Is Ending Already – Pounding Hangover Next
Japanese Stocks In Freefall - TOPIX Plunges Almost 5% To 4-Month Lows; Nikkei Down 15% In 2014
Gov't seeks approval for dumping Fukushima plant groundwater into sea
Japan's 'Hollowing-Out' Means Weaker Yen Not Helping Much

## China ##
Giant pipeline brings unaffordable water to China's north
China's Secret Anti-Secrecy Act
Rich Chinese buy visas in US and Australia
China's missing data may signal rising unemployment

## UK ##
Osborne: Fracking 'won't slash' household energy bills
Rural roads could close over council cash shortfall

## US ##
Jack Lew: US could default on debt by 'end of month'
Manufacturing slows sharply in January, sends new orders reeling
U.S. manufacturing grew at a substantially slower pace in January as new order growth plunged by the most in 33 years, driving overall factory activity to an eight-month low, an industry report showed on Monday.
Olive Garden, JC Penney and the Death of the Middle Class
Business is booming for both Barney's and Bargain Basement, but as middle-income workers continue to get hit by recessionary pressures and wage stagnation, restaurants and retailers that once enjoyed the spending habits of the American middle class are dying off as their customer base falls back towards poverty.
Wall Street suffers worst drop since June after weak data
Propane Shortage Hits West Central Illinois
Propane shortage affecting Pa.
Drought cuts into state's hydro power supplies (California)
RadioShack to close about 500 stores: Report
The US Economy Is Growing Much Slower Than You Think …
Regional banks' weak performance is a warning

And finally...
Police: Reported scream was from copulating pig

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