Saturday, March 08, 2014


News Links, March 8-9, 2014

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
China Heralding $1.5 Trillion Emerging Debt Wall: Credit Markets
A surge in interest rates and the worst currency rout since 2008 in developing nations from Russia to Brazil are inflating corporate borrowing costs as $1.5 trillion of obligations come due by the end of 2015.
Tencent predicts the markets most likely to collapse in China
The markets slipping the fastest towards collapse in China include the mainland and Hong Kong property markets, the mainland's stock markets and the renminbi exchange rate, according to a report from Tencent's financial web portal.
Canada's economy sheds 7,000 jobs in second decline in 3 months
Emerging World Poses More Danger Than in 1990s: Cutting Research
IMF unveils investors behind emerging market debt boom
Copper Collapses Most Since Dec 2011 On China Credit Fears
The Top 1% of Artists Earn 77% of Recorded Music Income, Study Finds…

## Airline Death Spiral ##
American Record Profit Seen as Air Merger Buoys Industry
Less than three months after its creation, the world's largest airline is poised to add seats on some jets and has almost finished a technology fix to let fliers book trips on both its American and US Airways units. Also in the works: more fee-based services such as early boarding and extra legroom.
Boeing to Inspect Wings of Undelivered Dreamliners

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Philippines To Upgrade Navy Base Facing Disputed Waters
The Philippines is to upgrade a navy base facing disputed South China Sea waters to serve the extra ships being acquired to protect its territory, the military said Thursday.
Diplomatic Row Among Gulf Nations Complicates US Weapons Sales
China Sides With Russia On Sanctions; Ambassador Warns "Western Nations Would Be Hurting Themselves"
US Guided-Missile Destroyer Truxtun Has Entered The Black Sea
Russia Not Afraid to say 'Nuclear Weapons' over Ukraine
Warning shots fired to turn monitors back from Crimea
Ukraine's Military Mobilizes, Prepares For Combat: Trucks, APCs, SAMs, Tanks Rolling Out
U.S. military presence in Africa growing in small ways
USAF To Increase Military Presence in Lithuania, Poland
Saudi Arabia declares Muslim Brotherhood 'terrorist group'
Libya threatens to bomb North Korea-flagged tanker
China draws 'red line' on North Korea, says won't allow war on peninsula
Obama administration defends cuts on nuclear security
As money becomes scarcer and budgets are cut accordingly, both military and civilian nuclear facilities will become increasingly insecure. Nuclear materials will become more vulnerable to theft, nuclear wastes will be managed insufficiently (or not at all), and ultimately the decommissioning of nuclear power plants will consist in sealing their doors and hoping for the best. Welcome to your bright nuclear future. And have a nice day! -- RF
China says no room for compromise with Japan on history, territory
China's foreign minister to Japan: This is 2014, not 1894
China's Claims of Defense Spending Boost in Doubt
US Sends Special Forces Troops to Jordan for Iraq Training
US, China ready to each assert power in Pacific

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Greek Protesters, Riot Police Scuffle in Athens
Venezuela opposition holds anti-Maduro rally in Caracas
Three killed in Cairo clashes, 48 wounded across Egypt
Iraqi women protest against proposed Islamic law in Iraq

## Energy/resources ##
Nigeria opens reserves to ease crippling fuel shortage
Durban 'running out of water fast'
Power shortage in South Africa could affect mining sector on top of strike woes
Congo Freezes Mining Expansion Projects Amid Power Shortage
Energy round-up: fossil fuels at a tipping point?
Kazakhstan Sues Foreign Oil Majors Over Flailing Kashagan
French Utility Reports $13Billion Loss over Solar, Wind Subsidies
Amid crippling European declines in gas storage and thermal energy production, France's GDF Suez is reporting a net loss of over $13 billion for 2013 and may move to cut dividends.  
Russia says restarts nuclear fuel transit to Europe via Ukraine
Power outage cuts communications (Norway)
A massive power outage in the Møre og Romsdal region affected 132 base stations in the early hours of Thursday morning, cutting out fixed line, mobile, broadband and emergency networks to thousands of people. Emergency generators also failed, leaving many residents without any method of communications for most of the day.

## Infrastructure scavenging ##
Mid Ulster a major hotspot for copper thieves cutting down electic poles

## Got food? ##
U.N. world food price index jumps 2.6 pct in February
The World Is Getting Hungrier
Beef costs reach record amid persisting drought
Organic Farmers Suffering due to GMO Contamination
Grubs up! Why insects are the food of the future

## Environment/health ##
Over 95% of Chinese cities failed to meet environmental standards

## Intelligence/propaganda/security/internet/cyberwar ##
Cyber attacks escalate between Ukraine and Russia, as both sides struggle to control the media
Google 'pretty sure' your data is safe: Schmidt
Suspected Russian spyware Turla targets Europe, United States
US intelligence figures say Europe is acting 'mock surprised' at leaks on NSA
Julian Assange tells SXSW audience: 'NSA has grown to be a rogue agency'
Wikileaks's Assange Says Group Will Release New Data
Technology on your ear: Japanese researchers test wearable PC

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
Health cuts see new-born deaths jump 43% in Greece

## Japan ##
Japanese Officials Discuss Perceived Decline in U.S. Military Might
Japanese officials are growing more open about discussing a perceived decline in America's military might as they seek to justify easing restrictions on Japan's own military.
Japan's long-term LPG plans got a bit thrown off this winter
Two recent developments have led Japan to realize that US supplies of LPG may not always be cheaper than supplies from the Persian Gulf, or as available, throwing into some question a strategy to access more US-produced LPG in the future.
Japan sees future business in Fukushima cleanup
Eyeing dozens of aging reactors at home and hundreds of others worldwide that eventually need to be retired, Japanese industry sees a profitable market for decommissioning expertise.
Nuclear disaster waste storage continues to create tensions in Ibaraki Pref.
Illegal nuclear dumping in Shiga raises alarms
Japan says bitcoin not real currency, but should still be taxed

## China ##
China Sees 1st Corporate Bond Default
China Is Crashing … As Predicted
China Exports Decline Unexpectedly, Trade Balance Negative
China 'Concern' Over North Korea Rocket Fired Near Airliner
China's Air Pollution Heads West
China's plan for cleaning up the dirty air in Beijing means power plants are being built in the west in an area populated by ethnic minorities.
China rural mini-bank run exposes perils of deregulation

## UK ##
London, a city in thrall to money and greed

## US ##
Wood Pellet Shortage Across New England
California Beats U.S. in Millionaires, Food-Stamp Users
3 huge cities flirting with bankruptcy: NYC, Chicago, LA
Staggering under pension obligations and debt, any of these could follow Detroit into court.
February Payrolls 175K, Beat Expectations Of 149K, Unemployment Rate Rises To 6.7%
Crony-Capitalist Con Men Demand King's Ransom For Worthless Freddie and Fannie Preferred Stock (David Stockman)
Wealth rebounds — but mostly for the wealthy
Mutual funds gone down the drain
Forty-one percent of U.S. mutual funds operating 10 years ago, closed before 2014.
Drought Stokes California's Class War
Experts: Heroin use rising following prescription drug crackdown
U.S. consumer credit growth held back by credit card decline
Ice storm leaves 420,000 customers without power in Carolinas
College Grads Taking Low-Wage Jobs Displace Less Educated
High-tech investment collapsing, no longer driving the economy
Never leave home generation: Household formation goes negative year-over-year at steepest rate since recession ended in 2009.
A vast hidden surveillance network runs across America, powered by the repo industry

And finally...
Peru: Security upped at Machu Picchu over influx of streakers

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