Sunday, March 02, 2014


News Links, March 1-3, 2014

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
Euro zone lending contraction compounds ECB headache
Ukraine Limits Withdrawals to 15,000 Hryvnia per Day (about $1,500); Hryvnia Up 14%
Argentina Plans Measures Against Businesses Raising Prices
Emerging Economies - From Easy Money to Hard Landing?
Emerging Market Banking Crises Are Next
French gov't seeks pay cuts for CEOs of semi-public firms -paper
France's government has asked the chief executives of companies in which it owns a minority stake to accept pay cuts of up to 30 percent in upcoming pay rounds as the country tightens its belt, the daily Le Figaro reported on Sunday.
Gold Fix Study Shows Signs of Decade of Bank Manipulation
Mt Gox Files For Bankruptcy After $473 Million In Bitcoins "Disappeared"
The Relentless, Systematic Tear-Down Of The Dollar Hegemony
China's manufacturing slows to eight-month low
Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway sees record profit
For Europe's Car Makers, Stagnation Replaces Decline, As Geneva Show Beckons
Martenson: Years of money pumping will end in equity rout (video)
Rome spared bankruptcy as Italy approves €500m rescue
Ukraine's Currency in Free Fall

## Airline Death Spiral ##
With Pilot Shortage, Regional Airlines Search for Someone to Pay Rising Costs
The regional airline industry is being roiled by a pilot shortage that results from simple math: the cost to complete flight-training programs is high, and the entry-level pay at these carriers is low. How the problem gets fixed—which largely means how the bill will be divided and how much trickles down to passengers—is one of the big questions confronting the entire U.S. airline industry.
GAO report: Too few pilots or too little pay?
For some fliers, mileage programs come up short
Virgin swings to first-half loss (Australia)
Winter flight cancellations put United in 'huge hole'
Qantas Jumbo Jets Grounded for Days After Wings Clip
Military pilot outplacement service to resume amid shortage (Japan)
An outplacement service for Self-Defense Forces pilots will likely resume in fiscal 2014 to cope with the shortage of commercial airline pilots expected from the advent of low-cost carriers in the Asia-Pacific region, a government source said Sunday.

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Inside Ukraine: Mish Reader Who Speaks Ukrainian and Russian Challenges Western Media View of Events
Military airport in Ukraine's Crimea taken over by Russian soldiers-Interfax
Crimean leader claims control, asks Putin for help
The pro-Russian prime minister of Ukraine's restive Crimea claimed control of all military, police and other security services in the region Saturday and appealed to Russia's president for help in keeping peace there.
Ukraine Mobilizes After Pro-Russian Forces Seize Crimea 
Russia likely to get what Russia wants in showdown
Russian troops welcomed by rapturous crowds in Crimean port city Balaklava
US prepares tough response for Russia over Ukraine
Ukraine mobilizes after Putin's 'declaration of war'
The U.S. has Installed a Neo-Nazi Government in Ukraine
Look Who the US Is Siding With in Ukraine, Egypt, and Syria
US quietly partners with neo-Nazis in Ukraine, fascists in Egypt, and al-Qaeda in Syria
Russia warns Ukraine may lose gas discount
US Ships Approaching Sevastopol? Mapping US Naval Assets
US Official Claims 6,000 Russian Troops In Complete Control Of Crimea - Crisis Map Update
Tighter Capital Controls in Ukraine, Transaction Limit About $100; New Head of Ukraine's Navy Defects After 1 Day
Iraq: 'This is war,' say Kurds in oil fight with Baghdad
Main Israel lobby seeks to regain footing as Netanyahu visits U.S
Political Union In Europe: Governance Of, By, And For The Elite
US transit hub in Romania fully operational
Faced with declining ice cover, U.S. Navy eyes greater presence in Arctic
Emerging Oil Venues Attracting Pirates
Bomb kills at least 10 in northeast Nigerian city: witnesses
95 killed, 388 injured in 40 bomb attacks in Pakistan in February

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Knife-wielding group kills 34 people in China
More than 10 knife-wielding attackers slashed people at a train station in southwestern China late Saturday in what authorities called a terrorist attack by Uighur separatists, and police fatally shot five of the assailants, leaving 34 people dead and 130 others injured, state media said.
Anti-riot police called in to contain rowdy youth (Kenya)
Protesters Scuffle With Riot Police in Athens
Fresh Venezuela protests erupt in Caracas streets after violent clashes
Thousands march in Hong Kong to condemn attack on ex-newspaper editor
Thousands protest at Jerusalem anti-draft prayer rally

## Energy/resources ##
Shell's Troubles in Nigeria Continue
Egypt plans dam-busting diplomatic offensive against Ethiopia
Egypt may be in the throes of political turmoil, but the government has begun a diplomatic offensive aimed at stopping Ethiopia from building a huge hydroelectric dam on the Nile River that Cairo says will be a disaster for the Arab world's most populous nation.
Finnish nuclear plant delayed again as Areva, TVO bicker
Southern Philippines Continues To Reel From Power Outage
Myanmar Summer Electricity Shortage Poses Serious Threat To Production
Green Energy Expansion in Germany Comes at a Hefty Price
Fuel shortage to blame for electricity blackouts: Ministry of Electricity (Egypt)
Is Quebec's electricity business model broken?
Brazil's fuel self-sufficiency hinges on price hikes -Petrobras
Afghanistan Mineral Riches Won't Go Anywhere Without Rail
Bakken Oil Rail Slows, Regulators Deny Terminal Closures
Getting a charge from changes in humidity
There's no end to the possible ways to harvest solar energy. This sounds like the old refrain that technology will save the day, but we have to keep in mind the colossal amount of energy that must be expended in developing, manufacturing, and deploying the infrastructure needed to harvest a relatively small amount of energy. People almost always fail to see the huge difference between stored solar energy (fossil fuels) and real-time solar energy (renewables). -- RF
New Spy Technology to Spawn Oil Revolution

## Got food? ##
New threat to Brazil's breadbasket: a pesky caterpillar
Drought Threatens S.E. Asia Food Price Gains Amid Haze
The drought parching Singapore and swaths of Malaysia and Indonesia threatens to raise food prices, slow economic growth and disrupt water supply in the region, home to the world's oldest tropical rainforests.
Rampant food waste a barrier to cutting poverty: World Bank
The people who eat pizza every day
Farm Prices Rise, Consumers Paying More for Milk, Beef (US)

## Environment/health ##
Major Nuclear Dump Has Leaked, But Does US Gov't Have a Plan B?
Dramatic extent of Great Lakes freeze captured by NASA satellite
Monsanto's Roundup Found in 75% of Air and Rain Samples
Marine mining: Underwater gold rush sparks fears of ocean catastrophe
Burping and Farting Cows Release More Methane than You Think
Europe's flood losses to soar by 2050, research shows

## Intelligence/propaganda/security/internet/cyberwar ##
Brazil champions undersea cable to bypass US
Meet the Seven People Who Hold the Keys to Worldwide Internet Security
Secret Service Said To Be Investigating Security Breach At Sears
Industry Needs to Step Up to Protect the Power Grid From Cyber Attack
World's biggest cyberattack detected, 360 million accounts, 1.25 billion email addresses hacked
Forget the NSA, the LAPD Spies on Millions of Innocent Folks

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
Woes of Megacity Driving Signal Dawn of 'Peak Car' Era
In the globe's growing megacities, pollution and gridlock are putting a damper on driving. In India, some commuters are leaving their cars at home to avoid traffic snarls and long prowls for parking. More young Americans are forgoing the dream of auto ownership for public transport, bikes and vehicle-sharing. Cars on the road are lasting longer than ever.
Why the Periphery Is Crumbling: The Spoils System Is Cracking
Post peak countries: the collapse of Yemen
Darkness Descending on Venezuela
Home ownership in Greece 'a sick joke' as property market collapses

## Japan ##
Abenomics struggles to deliver public works boom
Farmland unproductive 3 years on
Hundreds rally in Tokyo against dropped Fukushima crisis charges
Locals fight plans for giant solar power plant in scenic area
Japan's US LNG imports to reach 10 million tonnes
Abe's Cabinet to pursue revision of 10 laws in collective defense push
The government plans to ask the Diet for approval this fall to revise more than 10 laws to enable Japan to exercise the right to collective self-defense, a government source said.
Majority of Tohoku mayors say recovery slow or nonexistent
More than half of the 42 mayors of northeastern cities, towns and villages damaged by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami describe Tohoku's reconstruction as slow or stalled, a Kyodo News survey said Sunday.
It is just as I said: What was destroyed will never be rebuilt. -- RF

## China ##
China Factory Index Decline Adds to Li Growth Challenges
Separatists blamed for China knife attack; 33 dead
People's Daily Arms Netizens to 'Kill the Devils'
An online platform for China's Communist Party is encouraging citizens to take out their hostility toward the Japanese in the virtual world. While Beijing flexes its muscles in a very real way in the East China Sea, ordinary Chinese can now play a game called "Kill the Devils" on the website of the People's Daily newspaper, the official mouthpiece of the party here.
China: A Falling Star
Despite its reputation as an economic powerhouse, Chinese economic and government data show inconsistencies in exports, colossal corporate and local debt, an imminent collapse in its shadow financial sector, and the Chinese government's misunderstanding of the Chinese citizens' desire to purchase gold.
China Expands Strategic Presence in Israel
Meanwhile, China Quietly Takes Over Zimbabwe
Crisis Gauge Rises to Record High as Swaps Avoided
Chinese Austerity Campaign Spreads Beyond Ferraris to Funerals

## UK ##
Numbers in Wales using food banks quadrupled in two years
Side-effects risk to rise as millions more take statins

## US ##
Frozen East Coast Pays as Law Blocks Cheaper Fuel Flows
The myth of real estate and economic mobility: Americans face lowest geographic mobility in over two generations. Is staying put the new American Dream?
Quiznos edges closer to bankruptcy
Chart of the Day: Fast food in America
Fitch drops Detroit water, sewer debt to junk
Propane production up, but U.S. shortage looms
State of Emergency extended for propane shortage
Wide range of wintry conditions affects half of US
Tenn. State University Requires Students to Wear Trackable IDs
Buffett Says Energy Future to Probably Seek Bankruptcy
Warren Buffett, the billionaire chairman of Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (BRK/A), said Energy Future Holdings Corp. will "almost certainly" file for bankruptcy this year unless natural gas prices soar.
Obama's dilemma: Fix roads, don't raise deficits
California governor signs $687 million drought relief legislation
The largest share of the drought relief package - $549 million - comes from accelerated spending of bond money voters previously approved in two ballot propositions.
Natural Gas Inventories Are Headed Toward Zero
The media hasn't spent much time covering this issue, but I expect it will garner some attention if we drop below 1 tcf next week since it hasn't happened in over a decade. This would put the US about one more cold snap from sending natural gas prices to the moon.
There's Not One Home for Sale in San Francisco That an Average Teacher Can Afford
Big Investors Snapping Up Delinquent Mortgages to Foreclose - and Rent
Will IBM Layoff 15,000 Americans?

And finally...
Mississippi man found alive in body bag at funeral home
Valeria Lukyanova -- the human Barbie -- says she can live on just air, light

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