Sunday, November 02, 2014


News Links, November 1-3, 2014

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
Global Shadow Banking Assets Reached Record $75T In 2013: Financial Stability Board
Canada's economy unexpectedly shifts into reverse in August after months of gains
Japan's central bank shocks markets with more easing as inflation slows
Japan: QE As Morphine For A Terminal Patient
China's Industrial Growth Slows More Than Expected As Major Banks See Increase In Defaults
Election-year water crisis taking a toll on Brazil's economy
I see debt people: 10 scary economic charts for Halloween
Eurozone 'a problem' for the world economy
Hyundai Heavy Plummets to Worse Loss Ever
Who's Tripping up the Designs of the Global Corporatocracy?
"Globalization Is Turning In On Itself And It Is Each Man For Himself"
When Central Banks Destroy The Monetary System: The German Story After 1910
The story of the destruction of the German mark during the hyper-inflation of Weimar Germany from 1919 to its horrific peak in November 1923 is usually dismissed as a bizarre anomaly in the economic history of the twentieth century. But no episode better illustrates the dire consequences of unsound money or makes a more devastating, real-life case against fiat-currency: where there is no restraint, monetary death will follow.
Gulf economies edge towards reform as oil price slides
* Some Gulf states use oil price as political cover for reform
* May be biggest attempt to economise since 1990s
* Kuwait close to cutting diesel, kerosene subsidies
* Higher electricity, water costs in the pipeline
* Oman says may start subsidy cuts next year
Fifty one countries sign 'milestone' accord against tax evasion
Economic Collapse Scenario
In 2014, countries are still paying off debt from World War One

## Cut, baby, cut! ##
More job cuts for Lloyds staff
Lloyds Banking Group has announced it plans to cut a further 9,000 jobs, over the next three years.
Amgen, bowing to hedge fund pressure, to cut up to 1,100 more jobs
Time Warner takes ax to HBO with 150 job cuts looming
More than 6,000 public sector jobs in Northern Ireland could be lost as a result of budget cuts
World Bank Plans To Cut 500 Jobs Over Next Three Years In Restructuring Move
Axe falls on hundreds of health, education jobs in Tasmania

## Airline Death Spiral ##
Air Armenia suspends all passenger flights
Skinnier Seats on More Crowded Planes
'No more money for ailing airline'
Canadians see airline fees as 'money grab,' poll finds
Air France-KLM rebuffs report of bankruptcy
Wanted: 500,000 pilots for China aviation gold rush

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Buckle up and double down! Hagel: New World Order Means Endless War
Washington's Blinding Hypocrisy: A Tale Of Two Elections In The Ukraine
So here is the real message from the US government: elections overseas are only legitimate if we have pre-approved the parties allowed to stand and if we have pre-approved the outcome. The election must result in exactly the kind of "pro-West" government that we desire or we will begin destabilization and regime change, if completely ignoring the results does not do the trick.
Qatar And ISIS: Emirate Joins Anti-Islamic State Coalition, But Remains Haven For Anti-Western Groups
Qatar has joined the American-led coalition to fight Islamic State, yet the emirate is a haven for anti-Western groups and foreign diplomats have reported seeing cars with Islamic State logos in an affluent bay district.
US-backed forces in Syria suffer big setback
Al Qaida-backed militants Saturday stormed the base of the most prominent civilian commander in the U.S.-backed Syrian rebel force, forcing him and his fighters to flee into hiding in the Jebal al Zawiya mountains of northern Syria.
Islamic State group kills 50 Iraqis
Russian Naval Ship Reported By Latvian Military Raises Fresh Concerns In Baltic Sea
NATO Baltic Jets Intercept Russian Airplanes for Third Day
Iran Defends Human Rights: Top Official Says West Should 'Look Into' Merits Of Iranian Law
Meanwhile, the West remains silent about KSA beheadings. -- RF
Houthi Rebels In Sanaa Give Yemen's President 10 Days To Form New Government
Yemeni Opposition Leader Assassinated In Sanaa; 18 Government Troops Killed In Hudeida
Libya Update: Benghazi Descends Into Mayhem As Army-Backed Gen. Hifter Fights Militias
Burkina Faso President Ousted, Raising Possibility Of A 'West African Spring'
Two military leaders claim power in Burkina Faso
Burkina Faso Crisis Update: Shots Break Out At State Television Headquarters
Burkina Faso's military forcibly assumed control of state television and radio stations Sunday in the capital of Ouagadougou, forcing journalists to flee their offices. Witnesses said soldiers fired rifles into the air to break up a crowd near state TV headquarters shortly before the broadcaster went off the air.
Burkina Faso's military backs Zida for transitional leader
Pacific Air Force Chief Says Wary of Risky Flying by China Jets
Pakistan seeks coastal patrol cutters from U.S.
GRC43M cutters for protection of coastal waters are being sought by Pakistan through the U.S. Foreign Military Sales program.
France Is Slowly Reclaiming Its Old African Empire
$100 billion Nicaragua Canal 'not sustainable'
China's clandestine submarine caves extend Xi's naval reach
55 killed in suicide attack at Wagah in Pakistan

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Mass water protests put pressure on Irish government
Tens of thousands of people marched in towns across Ireland on Saturday in a second day of mass protests against water charges, the biggest display of opposition to government austerity measures since the country's banking crisis and bailout in 2010.
Mass Protests Push Hungary to Cancel Controversial Internet Tax
Nicaraguans rise up against Chinese canal
Bay Area Activists Declare Victory After Israeli Carrier Cancels All Ships
Riots, clashes in France after activist dies in police grenade blast

## Energy/resources ##
Must read: The Failure of Green Energy Policies
It transpires that since 1995 low carbon energy sources (nuclear, hydro and other renewables) share of global energy consumption has not changed at all (Figure 1). New renewables have not even replaced lost nuclear generating capacity since 1999 (Figure 2). ZERO CO2 has been abated and the world has done zilch to prepare itself for the expected declines (escalating costs) of fossil fuels in the decades ahead. If this is not total policy failure, what is?
Bangladesh Hit With Nationwide Power Blackout After Transmission Line From India Has 'Technical Glitch'
Bangladesh electricity restored after major blackout
South Africa Blackouts Seen Lasting All Week After Silo Collapse
Rolling power blackouts will probably continue across South Africa this week as Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd. struggles to recover capacity from its second-biggest plant after a coal silo cracked and collapsed, it said.
How Safe Are Turkey's Oil And Gas Pipelines?
Thai economy may be running out of energy
Telangana CM says power shortage to last for 2-3 years
About 60% thermal plants suffer acute coal shortage: CEA
Politics Dim Obama's Africa Power Plan as Lights Go Out
28 firms commit to use gensets to ease power shortage - Meralco
Twenty-eight companies in the Philippines have committed to use their diesel-fueled generators to help ease a looming power shortage that could cripple one of Asia's fast-growing economies, Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) said on Friday.
Energy crisis: Textile industry faces $1.2b loss in six months (Pakistan)
Is North Sea oil exploration nearing its expiry date?
Top U.S. oil companies see more pressure to clamp down on spending
Top U.S. oil producers, which already were reining in spending before crude prices started to slip in June, are now looking to trim more fat from their budgets while reminding investors they must spend to grow.
The Peak Oil Crisis: A Reality Check
French nuclear plants in new mystery drone overflights - source
Promise of 'Captain America' fading for Asia's LNG buyers
North American liquefied natural gas projects, once believed to be the panacea that would save Asia from paying top dollar for the super chilled fuel, are proving to be less of a gamechanger than originally expected.
Gazprom to resume gas supply once Ukraine pays $2.2 bln
EU unblocks 'unprecedented levels' of cash to secure gas for Ukraine
Ukraine will guarantee transit of Russian gas to Europe - PM
Cost of nuclear power too high
Gas shortage set to have major impact on economy and jobs (Australia)
Is there really an oil glut?

## Infrastructure scavenging ##
Copper thieves endanger lives on our highways
One of the big items thieves have been stealing is copper from highway lights. From Jan. 1 through Oct. 23, copper thieves have stripped the wires from 37 highway entrance or exit ramps, mostly around the Louisville and Lexington areas. The problem also exists in eastern and southeastern Kentucky for power lines, telephone lines and homes under construction. 

## Got food? ##
UN report: Climate change has permanently ruined farmland the size of France
Got Leaves? Put 'Em to Work
U.S. Meat Prices Rise Sharply in October
Home-Grown Potatoes and Lovage
Bye-bye, burgers: New fast-food chains bet on healthy [sic] eating

## Environment/health ##
Think young! New study claims age is a mental thing
Positive thinking could be more effective than some forms of exercise, the study found.
Canada Halts Visas for Ebola Countries in West Africa
UN worker flown to France for Ebola treatment
That Sinking Feeling: Rising Sea Level Isn't Cities' Only Water Worry
Some of the world's expanding coastal cities face a two-pronged threat involving water: Sticking giant straws into the ground to suck up freshwater can cause the ground below to sink at the same time that sea levels are rising.
Cambrian Genomics CEO: We'll design every human on a computer and make poop smell like bananas
"We want to make everything that is alive on the planet," he explained. "Everything that is alive is not optimal. It can be made  better." But he doesn't have plans for replication: "We want to make totally new organisms that have never existed," he said. "And replace every existing organism with a better one. It just seems obvious that eventually every human will be designed on a computer."
Pecking Order: Energy's Toll on Birds
Global Boom in Dams Could Mean Biodiversity Bust, Scientists Warn

## Intelligence/propaganda/security/internet/cyberwar ##
Amazon-CIA $600 Million Deal Facing Scrutiny: 'What's the CIA Doing on Amazon's Cloud?'
Secret Manuals Show the Spyware Sold to Despots and Cops Worldwide
Court Rules Police Can Force Users to Unlock iPhones With Fingerprints, But Not Passcodes
Ray McGovern, CIA Analyst for 27 Years, is Arrested and Roughed Up in NYC for Trying to Protest Retired General Petraeus
FBI Quietly Seeks Broader Hacking Powers
The WSJ's Pathetic Sunnyside Journalism—-Retracts Its Own GDP Narrative
Google's Secretive DeepMind Startup Unveils a "Neural Turing Machine"
AP, Leahy write to Holder over FBI's fake news ploy
Google CEO: Computers Are Going To Take Our Jobs, And 'There's No Way Around That'
Until the power outages come. And they will. -- RF
Ferguson no-fly zone aimed at media
The U.S. government agreed to a police request to restrict more than 37 square miles of airspace surrounding Ferguson, Missouri, for 12 days in August for safety, but audio recordings show that local authorities privately acknowledged the purpose was to keep away news helicopters during violent street protests.
I'm terrified of my new TV: Why I'm scared to turn this thing on — and you'd be, too
Brazil Builds Internet Cable To Portugal To Avoid NSA Surveillance
Eye-in-the-Sky Blimp Boosts Singapore's Spying Ability
Gary Webb and Media Manipulation
Many Americans still count on the mainstream media to define reality for them, but too often the MSM spins false narratives that protect the powerful and diminish democracy, as happened in the long-running denial of cocaine trafficking by President Reagan's beloved Nicaraguan Contra rebels.

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
Virgin Galactic spaceship accident kills 1 pilot
Can private space survive 2 explosions in 4 days?
Are We Hard-Wired to Think We Can Grow Forever?

## Japan ##
Bank of Japandemonium Resorts to "Monetary Shamanism," and all Heck Breaks Loose
QE Is Clearly Destroying Japan, So BoJ Panics Into More
Japan's Inflation Is 3.2%—-Yet Madman Kuroda Crushes Consumer Purchasing Power With Collapsing Yen
Nikkei Futures Up Limit, Yen Collapses, Dollar Up, Gold Down as BoJ Pledges "Unwavering Determination" to Get 2% Inflation
Careful What You Wish For: Plunging Yen Leads To 140% Surge In Bankruptcies
Wal-Mart's Japan unit Seiyu to close 30 stores
Sony's quarterly loss balloons on mobile woes
Japan's 3 megabanks to report combined 10% profit drop for April-September
Fujian poachers ravaging Japan's coral
Removal of melted fuel from Fukushima No. 1 reactor delayed until 2025
As Abenomics falters, problems fester
Tsunami evacuees caught in Y3 tril money trap
Cash-strapped nuclear power company secretly donates 1.54 billion yen to city
Tokyo Olympic stadium: Sports cathedral or white elephant?

## China ##
China Filling Strategic Reserve With Cheap Oil
China seeks to boost oil reserve holding capacity
Falling Chinese Bank Deposits Add to Warning Signs on Economy 
China's GDP Growth: Less Than Meets the Eye?
China's October factory growth unexpectedly hits five-month low: official PMI
China's Economy Goes From Bad To Worse, In Charts
China successfully develops drone defence system: Xinhua
Xiaomi moves customer data to servers outside China

## UK ##
Cuts to employment and support allowance 'considered'
Ministers are considering drastically cutting the main Employment and Support Allowance sickness benefit, internal documents seen by the BBC suggest.
Number of European Arrest Warrants reaches record high
New figures show 1,660 people arrested under the controversial European Union measures last year, up 57 per cent on the figure four years earlier
British savers are 'worst in Europe'
Without a plan, junk status looms for Britain's Tesco: Moody's
Energy round-up: losing power?
Should we be worried about the threat of a cold dark winter? The prospect of gas shortages looked less likely after Russia reached agreement with Ukraine over payments. Closer to home though, a National Grid report has shown that spare electricity generating capacity this winter is at a seven year low.
Great council house sell-off scandal: Right-to-buy council houses leave nowhere for poor to live
1000 Highland Council jobs could go under swingeing cut plans
SCHOOLS could close, school days could be shortened and 1000 council staff, including 50 secondary school teachers, could lose their jobs as Highland Council seeks to save millions from its budget.

## US ##
That Shrinking Slice of a Barely Growing Pie: Why that Glorious Economy of Ours Feels so Crummy
Florida Cop Rapes 20-Year Old Woman at Gunpoint While on Duty
The oxymoron of the labor force when labor means not working
92 million Americans are not in the labor force with 12 million of those being added only in the last 4 years.
How Long Can the Top 10% Households Prop Up the "Recovery"?
Feds Spent $20 Billion On Secret 'Micropurchases': Report
How many Frappuccinos can you buy with $30,000? Sounds like the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) might be able to help you with that answer, as its employees spent that much at Starbucks last year alone.
Suicide surpassed war as the military's leading cause of death
Flying Cash Stops Traffic on Highway as Drivers Chase Bills
History: The real Clinton story: 1983
History: The real Clinton story: 1985
QE Added $9 Trillion In "Equity Wealth" Or 32% Of The Current S&P500 Level, JPMorgan Finds
10 famed American franchises that faced financial ruin
WARNING: Avoid this corrupt, third-world country at all costs
Christmas Shopping Season Starts Today: Walmart Leads the Way with Price Cuts on 20,000 Items for the Holiday Season
Americans Need Fuel-Cost Rescue as Spending Falls: Economy
The drop in fuel prices couldn't have come at a better time for the U.S. economy.
One-Third of American Children Now Live in Poverty
Federal Agencies Just Doing Whatever They Want Now
Silver Coin Sales At US Mint Soar To Highest In Two Years

And finally...
Hello Kitty's 40 years of cuteness and cool

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