Sunday, May 18, 2014

 

News Links, May 17-19, 2014

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
Auto recalls on track to hit all-time record
GM to pay $35 million U.S. fine for delayed response
Hyundai recalling more than 140,000 Tucson crossover vehicles
Bernanke the Sophist: The Deception Behind QE
Plans to de-risk 'too-big-to-fail' banks face hurdles in Europe, Asia
Global plans to prevent taxpayers from having to pay for big bank failures are at risk because banking supervisors in Europe and Asia do not fully support some of the proposals aimed at drawing a line under the 2007-2008 financial crisis.
The "Recovery" Fizzle Is Global—Even Fed Doves Like Rosengren Are Doubting Their Handiwork
China-Russia discussing currency swaps package
Budget to cut 16,500 public service jobs (Australia)
Most French 'ready to sacrifice public services'
Traditionally the French place a high value on their public services but as the economic crisis takes hold it appears the mood might be changing, according to the results of new poll published this week that were described "taboo-breaking".
Climate change to hit sovereign debt ratings, S&P says
Portugal's bailout is over, but not the austerity
'Austerity' in Spain: Corrupt Corporations Behind Bankrupt Private Toll Roads Get Bailed Out
Swiss Reject World's Highest Minimum Wage, Jet Purchase

## Airline Death Spiral ##
Unrest cited as THAI struggles for air
Thai Airways International Plc (THAI) remains in the red, reporting a fourth successive loss in the year's first quarter as it singled out Thailand's prolonged political turmoil as the prime cause.
Qantas shake-up: Pilots offered redundancies as part of airline's $2b cost reduction program
Qantas is seeking voluntary redundancies from its pilots for the first time in history, as the struggling airline shrinks its fleet in a bid to cut costs.
Ryanair shock! More routes dropped this summer than added as focus shifts to major airports – bad news for secondary airports
Dire need for more airlines (Cyprus)
Spice Jet loss widens to Rs 321 cr
Malaysian Airlines posts worst loss in over 2 years after MH370 disappearance
Malaysia PM Najib: Malaysian Air Will Get No Bailout
Pilot shortage cuts services, puts brakes on LCC growth
Vanilla Air cancels 154 June flights due to pilot shortage
Europe's regional airports facing "tough trading conditions"

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Philippines releases photos of Chinese reclamation
Vietnam-China Shared Patrols Turn to South China Sea Standoff
China ratcheting up pressure on Vietnam following riots
China Blames Vietnam, Says Will Not Cede Inch of Disputed Territory
NATO DMs Mull New Bases Along Ukraine Frontier
One month on, Ukraine military fails to rout rebels
Who opposes Russian sanctions? German companies
German industry is ramping up efforts to dissuade Chancellor Angela Merkel from imposing tough new economic sanctions on Russia over Ukraine, warning of lasting damage to domestic firms and the broader economy if Moscow is hit hard.
Bill Clinton's Epic Double-Cross: How "Not An Inch" Brought NATO To Russia's Border
US demand may derail nuclear talks with Iran
As diplomats began drafting a comprehensive agreement on the Iranian nuclear program and Western sanctions in Vienna, US officials were poised to demand a drastic cut in Iran's enrichment capabilities that is widely expected to deadlock the negotiations.
Fearing militia control of Libya's airports, U.S. moves troops to Sicily in case evacuation needed
In Africa, Li Keqiang Refutes Charge of Chinese 'Neo-Colonialism'
Serbia and Bosnia Flooding Disturbs Land Mines From Region's 1990s War
Selling War: The World's Biggest Exporters Of Weapons
Rise of the Eurosceptics; Unholy Alliance Scorecard
Abe's Article 9 blitz alarms Asia

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Police clash with protesters near São Paulo airport
Rival Thai Political Groups Risk Violence by Escalating Protests
Vietnam clamps down on anti-China protests
Hundreds of protesters arrested in Brussels as business leaders debate 'maintaining citizen's trust'

## Energy/resources ##
Energy agency predicts oil shortage unless supply boosted
Industrialised countries could be facing the prospect of an oil supply squeeze and higher prices later this year unless production is lifted, according to a report just released by the International Energy Agency.
Egypt Sets Clocks Forward Amid Crippling Energy Crisis
Blackouts, water rationing in Metro (Philippines)
Blackouts and water supply interruptions have started in Metro Manila and outlying areas as major power plants conk out and sources of water for households and industries dry up.
Panama power restored after countrywide blackout
PLN to Speed Up Work on Power Plants to Ease Electricity Shortage (Indonesia)
The state electricity company, Perusahaan Listrik Negara, said it plans to accelerate the construction of new power plants in order to minimize the rolling blackouts in several provinces that have caused huge losses to the business sector.
Eskom issues severe power shortage alert
South Africa's power utility, Eskom today warned customers of a "severely constrained" power system due to the unavailability of some of its generating units and said it would implement a new round of load-shedding.
Power shortage in Balochistan exacerbates (Pakistan)
Yemen suffering from major fuel shortages
Bachelet announces emergency plan to tackle energy shortage with natural gas (Chile)
Russia's Lukoil to drill for tight gas deep beneath Saudi desert
In taking Crimea, Putin gains a sea of fuel reserves
China producing and burning most of the world's coal
Most of Europe's Running Out of Fossil Fuels
OPEC Questions Sustainability Of North American Oil Boom
IEA looks to OPEC to boost oil production as output growth elsewhere slows
Motor Mouth: 'Green' cars still a giant waste of money
Balkans flooding threatens Serbia power plants, 37 dead
Germany's Gabriel says state won't pay for nuclear decommissioning
Oh, but it will. Just wait and see. -- RF
Myanmar bans timber exports to stop smuggling
Norway May Force Oil Platforms to Use Expensive Onshore Electricity
Norway's parliament will try to force oil rigs in a large area of the North Sea to use electricity delivered from onshore, an environmentally friendly move but one that could push up costs and delay projects.

## Infrastructure scavenging ##
Detroit to Begin Salvaging Materials From Abandoned Buildings
Copper thieves damage lights along I-75

## Got food? ##
The Meat Crisis Is Here: Price Of Shrimp Up 61% – 7 Million Pigs Dead – Beef At All-Time High
Food prices rise but shoppers won't pay more
Food producers cut to pieces as prices plunge at checkout
How will climate change affect food security? Symposium searches for answers.
Today's insects to be tomorrow's grub - Food experts
Global wheat, corn yields seen suffering from El Nino: Study
Coffee fungus raising prices for high-end blends
More than 10,000 asparagus spears stolen from Niigata farm (Japan)

## Lifestyle Solutions ##
Giving it away now: The new minimalism of living with less
5 ways bicycling can make or save you money

## Environment/health ##
Tiny plastic timebomb - the pollutants in our cosmetics
You probably didn't know they were there, but millions of tons of microbeads are being washed into the sea, up the food chain, and heading for the tuna on your plate
100% of California now in 'severe' drought or worse
Thousands flee, 25 die in record Balkan floods
Illinois Man is Third U.S. MERS Infection, CDC Says
MERS Virus Appears To Have Jumped From Human To Human In U.S.
Even Tiny Amounts of Radioactive Food Made Caterpillars Become Abnormal Butterflies

## Intelligence/propaganda/security/internet/cyberwar ##
How the NSA & FBI made Facebook the perfect mass surveillance tool
Energy Companies See Email, Hacktivists as Major Cybersecurity Threats
The FCC Issues its Proposal on Net Neutrality as Protesters Are Tossed from Hearing
How The FCC's Proposed Fast Lanes Would Actually Work
Everyone should know just how much the government lied to defend the NSA
Iran's president says internet controls must go
Hassan Rouhani blasts censorship in social media blitz after freedom of speech address cut by state TV
Washington spends £200m creating intelligence hub in Britain
Germany Will Ban Tech Companies That Play Ball With NSA
Sony Pictures acquires film rights for Greenwald's book on Snowden
Cisco CEO Warns Obama To Rein In NSA Or Face Collapse Of Trust In US Technology (And Cisco Sales)
NSA row sparks rush for encrypted email
Money stolen via online transfers breaks record in Japan

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
America's Bubble Empire And The Echoes Of Imperial Rome
Ron Paul On Why They Hate Peace
Most teachers spend hundreds to pay for supplies, special projects, even field trips (US)
Our shadow, the Borg, and the ruthlessness of efficiency

## Japan ##
Re-Arming Japan: The Growth of Willing Recruits (video)
Record high radiation in seawater off Fukushima plant
Summer without N-plants means unstable power supply
LDP No. 2 suggests Japan may join multinational force in future
Two-thirds of Japanese fear going bust in retirement
Tokyo stocks continue descent as retail investors head to exit
Government sweetening the pot for storage of Fukushima radioactive waste
The central government is compiling a generous compensation plan to overcome the reluctance of two towns to host intermediate storage facilities for radioactive waste from the Fukushima nuclear disaster.

## China ##
China Bad Loans Rise Most Since 2005 as Economy Slows
China's Ghost Cities Are About to Get Spookier
At least 6 Chinese cities had to bail out their real estate markets last month
Beijing sends evacuation ships to Vietnam
China goes local to soften hit from property downturn

## UK ##
Street lights set to be switched off under Cumbria council plan
U.K. Will be facing serious shortage of Oil, Gas and Coal in Five Years
Are The London Gold Vaults Running Empty?
Public service cuts deepen as councils near financial tipping point
Three in five will have exhausted other ways of making savings by 2015, leaving local services bearing the brunt of cuts
Soaring energy and housing costs force poorest homes to turn to food banks
Rich list: 'The richest people in Britain have had an astonishing year'
Combined wealth of Britain's 1,000 richest people has risen 15.4% on last year's total, to £518.975bn
UK housing market has deep problems, says BoE's Carney

## US ##
The Canary In The Greeter's Aisle: No "Escape Velocity" At Wal-Mart
Greenspan: Taxpayers on the Hook to Rescue JPMorgan in Crisis
Blackout hits downtown during heat wave (California)
In Wake of Botched Execution, Lawmaker Says 'Bring Back Firing Squads'
Retired Military Leaders Fret Kids Will Be 'Too Fat To Fight'
Agriculture Department puts in request to buy body armor
Police Now "Armed For War" Against Returning Veterans
Climate change lawsuits filed against some 200 US communities
Climate change lawsuits: Farmers Insurance filed class action lawsuit last month against nearly 200 communities in the Chicago area for failing to prepare for flooding. The suits argue towns should have known climate change would produce more flooding.
PHOTOS: Abandoned east side Detroit houses filled with tires, piles reach from floor to ceiling
Detectives: Diesel fuel theft ring hits 3 counties
Net Worth Of College Grads With Student Debt Is 20% Less Than High School Grads With No Debt
10 ways Wall Street skims $100 billion of your money
Pentagon document lays out battle plan against zombies
Still Paying for the Civil War

And finally...
Michigan pastor pleads guilty to climbing ladder to spy on couple having sex




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