Wednesday, December 31, 2014


News Links, January 1, 2015

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
Saudi Facing Largest Deficit In Its History
Europe deflation fears back after weak Spain, Greece data
As Greek Default Risk Soars To 66%, Morgan Stanley Warns ECB May Be Unable To Launch QE
New law spells end for many small Spanish businesses
An estimated 55,000 businesses are expected to close down over the coming weeks and months, wiping out around 120,000 jobs in a country which already has a 24 percent unemployment rate, labor groups say.
If there were many businesses willing and able to pay the higher rent fees (and hire the resulting unemployed), this might make sense. But Spain's economy doesn't look that healthy. -- RF
Slowdown in Italian economy has ended - Econmin to Corriere
Oil prices a cause for Scottish concern
1000% Inflation in Venezuela?
Venezuela confirms recession, highest inflation in Americas
Ruble Slide Lets Russia Tap Power Export Market for Euros
Russia 24 network interviews GATA secretary and Paul Craig Roberts on gold and commodity market rigging
Ditching US dollar: China, Russia launch financial tools in local currencies
Waste is Waste: Hosting The Olympics Proves It, But Keynesians Still Don't Get It
Central Bankers At Work: Money Dies In Japan, Markets Chaotic In Europe
Ukraine economy shrank 7.5% in 'worst year since WWII'
"Peak Gold Production" Hits In 2015
Gold Beat All Other World Currencies in 2014
"Gold is money. Everything else is credit." ~J.P. Morgan in 1912
Diversify With "Physical Precious Metals Stored Outside The U.S." – Faber
Shipping industry to see more M&As in 2015
Worst Currency in 2014? (One You Might Actually Use)
Seven shocking events of 2014
Wall Street Heathens: How Their Greed And Gambling Became The Axe Of Statist Policy
Eurozone no longer obliged to save Greece, Merkel ally says

## Airline Death Spiral ##
AirAsia QZ8501 Search: How Do Airplanes Disappear In The Age Of Modern Technology?
Pilot's Final Request Was Met by Two-Minute Radio Delay
There were six planes at different altitudes passing in the area at the time, which contributed to the delayed response, according to AirNav.
Rapid growth leaves Asian airlines searching for pilots
Asian airspace becoming increasingly crowded amid growing safety concerns
Dubai International on track to be world's busiest airport
Flybe plane makes emergency landing in Belfast for second time this month

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Iran and Iraq Deepen Defense Ties, Sign Pact
Palestinians to press war-crimes case against Israel
Taiwan Announces Plans For New Submarines Week After Ship Launch
A week after launching its first domestically-built missile warship, Taiwan has announced a project to build its own submarines. The move comes after decades of failed attempts to procure submarines from the United States and reflects tensions between mainland China and South China Sea countries over territorial disputes.

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Moscow Police Squash Opposition Protest Over Navalny Verdict
A desperate bid to shore up shale drilling by selling oil abroad for higher prices. -- RF
Energy Crisis As Early As 2016
Low oil prices today may be setting the world up for an oil shortage as early as 2016. Today we have just 2% more crude oil supply than demand and the price of gasoline is under $2.00/gallon in Texas. If oil supply falls too far, we could see gasoline prices doubling within 18 months. For a commodity as critical to our standard of living as oil is, it only takes a small shortage to drive up the price.
Key Civeo shareholder jumps ship
It's been a tough week for Civeo, a company that rents dorm-style living quarters to oil field workers.
The fallout from underpriced oil is spreading far and wide. No doubt many unpleasant surprises are in the offing. -- RF

## Environment/health ##
IMF Austerity Helped Fuel Ebola Crisis: Researchers
Lending conditions contributed to under-prepared health systems in Ebola-hit countries, report states
Climate Change Threatens Quechua and Their Crops in Peru's Andes
Perception management: Murdoch, Scaife and CIA Propaganda
The rapid expansion of America's right-wing media began in the 1980s as the Reagan administration coordinated foreign policy initiatives with conservative media executives, including Rupert Murdoch, and then cleared away regulatory hurdles.

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
More evidence Mayan civilization collapsed because of drought
Sounds like a good idea, right? But here's just one of many examples of how, to deal with newly arising problems, we add new layers of complexity, in turn requiring greater energy throughput. -- RF
F-35 stealth jet 'will not be able to fire its guns until 2019'
Reported software glitch is the latest problem to dog state of the art fighter which is costing American taxpayers nearly $400 billion
The Prison State of America
States, in the name of austerity, have stopped providing prisoners with essential items including shoes, extra blankets and even toilet paper, while starting to charge them for electricity and room and board. Most prisoners and the families that struggle to support them are chronically short of money.

## Japan ##
Price hikes to put pressure on purses
Household budgets will likely be squeezed this year with price hikes on a variety of products — from food to commodities — because manufacturers are set to boost prices to cope with the yen's continuing depreciation and increasing prices for raw materials.

## China ##
The city's first post-Occupy New Year celebrations tomorrow are expected to be marked by a strong police deployment to observe and make "judgments" on distinguishing revellers from pro-democracy protesters.
The mainland's colonization of the Hong Kong economy
Number of evicted tenants is soaring, Ministry of Justice figures show
Countryside population to increase dramatically by 2025
Official figures show that the rural population will increase by 6 per cent over the next decade as people choose to leave cities and settle in the countryside
Third of listed UK oil and gas drillers face bankruptcy
Britain's oil and gas industry is running out of cash as low prices and high levels of debt threaten the sector, warns Company Watch
British Banks Need to be Strengthened-- Lord Mervyn King
Despite outward signs of stability, Britain's financial system is not on the pink of health and looks incapable of withstanding another global financial crisis. This concern about British banks was raised by former governor of Bank of England, Lord Mervyn King, who warned that the banks in U.K. were not yet "entirely safe".
The majority of older Americans rely on Social Security as primary source of retirement income.
Public Works officials said the collapse was caused by a sewage pipe that gave way. That pipe could date back all the way to the 1800s.
Welcome to the faceless future of banking
Peek into the future of bank branches and you won't see many bankers. In the years ahead—sooner rather than later—banks will continue to shutter their satellites and turn to other means to perform the services once done at the branches.

And finally...

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