Tuesday, April 15, 2014


News Links, April 15-16, 2014

** In memory of Michael C. Ruppert **

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
Baltic Dry Drops For 15th Day To Lowest In 9 Months (Back Below $1000)
Greece On The Dnieper: With The Ukrainian Currency & Economy Collapsing, IMF Set To Loot What's Left
What Happens When 'All Assets Have Become Too Expensive?'
Italy's Monte dei Paschi considers bigger cash call
CSIRO prepares to cut another 300 jobs (Australia)
Citigroup cuts 200 to 300 jobs
Cut, baby, cut! -- RF
High-Frequency Traders Get Curbs as EU Reins In Flash Boys
Capitalism simply isn't working and here are the reasons why
Economist Thomas Piketty's message is bleak: the gap between rich and poor threatens to destroy us
Giant Cement Companies Lafarge, Holcim Aim To Merge, Fuelling Antitrust Worries, Fears Of Global Cement Price Increases
Germany outlook sours on Ukraine concerns

## Airline Death Spiral ##
Facing firm oil prices, Asia airlines hedging big part of fuel use
Two of Canada's northern airlines plan merger
The rise of China's penny-pinching budget airlines
Tigerair Mandala Continues to Shrink and Cancel Routes
Tigerair Mandala Airline continues to strip-off more routes and flights from its domestic network in a measure to stem mounting financial losses. Meanwhile, the Indonesian Civil Aviation Authorities are undertaking an audit of the airline's finances to determine whether the airlines is financially able to continue to operate.
Airlines move away from bereavement fares

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Pro-Russian militias fill the vacuum as Kiev's control in eastern Ukraine slips
West approves $3.2 billion package for Ukraine
US Pays Half Of Gazprom's Overdue Invoice With $1 Billion Ukraine Loan Guarantee
White House Admits CIA Director Brennan Was "Secretly" In Kiev
Kiev's grip loosening on restive eastern Ukraine
Ukraine on the brink as troops take on rebels
Ukraine recaptures airfield from pro-Russia separatists
Specter of Civil War; Putin's Army Hiding – Not Even CNN Can Find It; Easy Solution
Fragile Europe Weakens U.S. Push for Russia Sanctions
Rouhani says Iran sanctions will unravel in months
Growing Muscle: China's Neighbors Gear Up for a Fight
French test fire new cruise missile
US Navy christens huge $3 billion destroyer ship USS Zumwalt that appears as a fishing boat on enemy radar
Blast at bus station in Nigerian capital kills 72
Russian Fighter Jet Buzzed U.S. Ship: Officials
Mafia port in Italy will host transfer of Syria's chemical weapons
Thirty Venezuelan Military Officials Allegedly Under Arrest for Coup Plotting
2,000 PLA troops could invade Diaoyutai in 5 hours: WSJ
PLA may use fishing boats to lead Diaoyutai assault: Japanese media
Paris police order 'systematic eviction' of Roma gypsies
Latvia bans Russian state television, plans new Russian-language channel
Rebel videos show first U.S.-made rockets in Syria
China Planning 'To Militarise Space' Against US Anti-Satellite Weapons
Prince Bandar bin Sultan, Head Of Saudi Intelligence, Has Been Sacked
The Future of Countries (secession and unification)
CIA's Pakistan drone strikes carried out by regular US air force personnel

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Anti-royal protesters march in Madrid
Student killed, 3 journalists injured in clashes in Egypt

## Energy/resources ##
Hats, Scarves & Blankets At Home: How The "Energy Poor" Go Green
Ireland scraps wind energy exports
Ukraine has gas in storage for Europe, minister says
Europe speeds up gas storage to prepare for Russian cut
Global Biofuels Output Drops For First Time Since 2000
Iran jockeys for position in gas supplies to Europe
Iran to Maintain Daily Oil Sales at 1 Million Barrels Into July
Kazakhstan looks to offset Kashagan oil field failure
Crimea: the Oil, Gas Story
The recent annexation of the Crimea region could land Russia with substantial Black Sea gas and oil resources off the peninsula's southwest and east coasts.
Kashagan – Back to the drawing board?
Musings: The Oil Industry's Era of Austerity - Part Two
BP Head Says Russian Business Unaffected by Sanctions

## Infrastructure scavenging ##
Copper thieves target Board of Water Supply (Hawaii)
After two copper theft incidents targeting the Board of Water Supply left customers without water and damaged its operating system, the company said it plans to increase security around its reservoirs.

## Got food? ##
Shortage of Farmers Creates 'Dangerous Situation' for U.S.
Drought Could Complicate Already Difficult Food Crisis In Syria
Profit Tastes Like Chicken in Hunt for Cheaper U.S. Meat
The final word on food banks?
Every week, in Britain and across the world, new food banks are opening their doors. Ballooning numbers of people in the US, one of the wealthiest nations on earth, inhabit tent cities and the OECD tells us that income disparity in industrialised nations has reached a thirty-year high.
Voodoo Dolls Prove It: Hunger Makes Couples Turn On Each Other
Where's The Whole Grain In Most Of Our Wheat Bread?
Shrimp Is Big. Now It's Sick. And Really Expensive
Prices for shrimp have jumped to a 14-year high in recent months, spurred by a disease that's ravaging the crustacean's population.
Soaring Food Inflation Full Frontal: Beef, Pork And Shrimp Prices Soar To Record Highs

## Environment/health ##
Mississippi Basin Water Quality Declining Despite Conservation
Super-rats immune to poison 'growing as big as cats' (UK)
How Harmless Bacteria Learned to Eat Human Flesh
Europe searches for nuclear waste storage sites
A new law is being drafted in Germany to regulate investigations aimed at finding suitable sites for permanent nuclear waste storage. The search can take many years - and Germany's neighbors are facing similar obstacles.
Vacuuming carbon from the atmosphere may be most realistic solution to climate change
That's going to cost a lot of money, and consume a lot of energy. -- RF
Dying in Defense of Earth: Eco-Activist Murders Skyrocket
As the need for preservation of the Earth's natural resources has grown, says the group, the rate of violence against those fighting to protect the planet has faced a "sharp" increase in recent years. In the last four years the death rate of activists has risen to an average of two people a week, according to the report, with 2012 marking the most deadly year with 147 killings. That's nearly three times more than in 2002.

## Intelligence/propaganda/security/internet/cyberwar ##
Guardian and Washington Post win Pulitzer prize for NSA revelations
10,000 Russians Rally Against 'Lies' of State-Run Media
Nearly A Fifth Of Americans Suffer Data Breach -- Many Risk ID Theft
FBI Plans to Have 52 Million Photos in its NGI Face Recognition Database by Next Year
Apple Upgrade Tracks Customers Even When Marketing Apps Are Off
The FBI's Facial Recognition Database Combines Lo-Res Photos With Zero Civil Liberties Considerations

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
America's Homegrown Terror
Plagued by poor infrastructure, climate denialism, and a patchwork of unregulated fracking wells and nuclear waste sites, the U.S. is poised to topple itself with self-inflicted wounds.
After Deaths, Renewed Focus On Leaky Gas Pipelines
Sears is dying: What the ubiquitous store's death says about America
The Approaching Infrastructure Train Wreck (US)

## Japan ##
This Chart Shows When the Smart Money Saw The Abenomics Fail
Japan Restricts Chicken Shipments After Bird Flu Outbreak
Gov't completes cull of 112,000 chickens after bird flu outbreak
Post-Fukushima Japan Chooses Coal Over Renewable Energy
Japan's Population Shrinks for Third Year as Ranks of Aged Grow
Massive BOJ-Buying Silences JGB Market
203 tons of tainted water pumped into wrong building at Fukushima N-plant
Japan Follows China's Coal Rush

## China ##
Chinese Checkers with Gold Prices
Is China already the world's largest 'owner' as opposed to 'holder' of gold? If so, China, with a mature financial center in Hong Kong, already is further along the path than most have predicted towards challenging the vital reserve currency status and international credibility of the U.S. dollar.
China Tightens Oversight of Trusts as Default Risk Increases
China to Face More Defaults: Asianomics' Walker (video)
Bottled-Water Frenzy in Lanzhou Fault of Oil Leak, Officials Say
This Chinese City's Property Market Is Even Chillier Than Its -22-Degree Weather
Chinese gold demand may rise 20% by 2017: industry body
China's Fractures Widen: Scramble To Sort Out Busted Debt In Massively Over-Built Steel Industry

## UK ##
Small Data: The way drugs and prostitution boost the economy
'Almost 85,000' workers on zero-hours contracts in Scotland
Mutant super rats invading Liverpool
E-cigarette poisoning figures soar as vaping habit spreads across UK
Childhood 'eroded' by 10-hour school day, teachers warn
Town halls using CCTV on 'industrial' scale to fine motorists, says minister

## US ##
How To Get a Job Despite the Economy (or, how much is a college degree really worth?)
About That "Strong" March Retail Sales "Bounce": Good Thing Summer's Coming!
What would we do without the Wall Street Journal? Do people actually pay for this lame-brained noise?
U.S. Crude Reserves Hit Highest Levels in nearly 40 Years
The Homeless in NYC Are Now Living in Tiny Spaces in the Frame of the Manhattan Bridge
Neofeudalism: We're Living in the Era of "Economic Elite Domination"
'The government doesn't listen to average citizens, just the rich and their lobbyists,' is probably the oldest criticism of any government, anywhere. But a new study has pretty much proven that this is precisely what's happening in Congress. According to the research, the meek voice of the public barely registers beneath the booming baritone of the wealthy—so much so that 'democracy' isn't a great descriptor of how we Americans are governing ourselves. The study's authors suggest "Economic Elite Domination" instead. And it's only going to get worse.
How the CEO of HFT Firm Virtu Financial is Demanding a Taxpayer Bailout in Florida
What the financial crisis, subsequent taxpayer bailouts, zero prosecutions of financial industry participants and further consolidation of the economy by oligarchs has taught us more than anything else is that the super rich and politically connected are not allowed to fail.
Inside the Private Prison Industry's Alarming Spread Across America
Small U.S. Colleges Battle Death Spiral as Enrollment Drops
Prisons are booming, colleges are failing. -- RF
GMO 7-Year Real Return Forecast: US Equities Negative For 7 Years
What goes up, must come down: The façade of the current stock market rally.
Infrastructure crisis building along U.S.-Mexico border
Obama Administration Rakes In Billions Off Student Debt
Eminent domain: Whose land is it anyway?
Dozens of top Nasdaq names in bear market territory
Rising food, housing costs push up U.S. inflation
US Postal Service Joins in Federal Ammo Purchases
Detroit Sells Homes for $1,000
J.C. Penney Down 20% in the Past Week
Luxury Apartments Push Out More Affordable Housing
The Rich Are Paying More Taxes: The Horror! The Horror! (another look at the data)

And finally...
So, the Dalai Lama walks into a convenience store in rural Japan…
North Korea sees no joke in Kim Jong-un's hairstyle

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