Saturday, February 28, 2015


News Links, February 28, 2015

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
Gold Sovereigns Bought by Greeks in Volume as New Greek Drachmas Designed
German Parliament Approves Greek Bailout Extension
Greece runs out of funding options despite euro zone reprieve
Europe's Survival Depends on Debt Restructuring, Not Growth
How Much Will You Pay to Park Cash as Central Banks Go Negative?
Putin Scores Victory Over Ukraine Allies in Bond Market Collapse
Fighting eases in eastern Ukraine but economic collapse now looms
We've Just Received a Bunch of Disappointing News on U.S. Manufacturing
Paranoia And Purges For Venezuela As Oil Misery Continues Paranoia And Purges For Venezuela As Oil Misery Continues
Oil Burns A Hole; Malaysia's Billionaires Reel As Ringgit Slips
Things are looking up for the global gun market

## Airline Death Spiral ##
Airline passengers are paying the price so that investors can profit
Spirit Air Doesn't Care You Hate All Its Extra Fees
United Airlines warns pilots after errors lead to 'near misses'
AirAsia India posts Rs 21 crore loss
Man taken off Shanghai Airlines flight in handcuffs after refusing to leave window seat

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov shot dead in Moscow
How ISIS Pays Its Fighters——From Gulf State Bankrollers
U.S. Navy says it has been flying P-8 reconnaissance planes out of Philippines
The United States has been flying its most advanced surveillance aircraft, the P-8A Poseidon, out of the Philippines for patrols over the South China Sea, the U.S. Navy said on Thursday, acknowledging the flights for the first time.
Chinese diplomat tells West to consider Russia's security concerns over Ukraine
Western powers should take into consideration Russia's legitimate security concerns over Ukraine, a top Chinese diplomat has said in an unusually frank and open display of support for Moscow's position in the crisis.
Former NATO Intel Officer Blames US for Ukraine Crisis
A former NATO intelligence analyst has said that the crisis in Ukraine stems from as far back as 30 years when the United States "deliberately sabotaged" relations between Europe and Russia.
The "Snipers' Massacre" on the Maidan in Ukraine (PDF)
Three days ago, former U.S. diplomat William R. Polk, who served President John F. Kennedy during the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, warned that the West was risking a similar crisis in reverse by pressing NATO forces aggressively onto Russia's borders. He has now added this postscript about the need for wise leaders.

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Live, From Athens: Anti-Government Protest
Antinuclear activists ordered to remove tents from ministry premises (Japan)
The Tokyo District Court on Thursday ordered the removal of tents erected by antinuclear campaigners on the premises of the economy ministry, which oversees the country's nuclear power industry.

## Energy/resources ##
As Oil Prices Collapse, North Dakota Considers Weakening Standards on Radioactive Drilling Waste
As the collapse of oil prices threatens North Dakota's shale drilling rush, state regulators are considering a move they say could save the oil industry millions of dollars: weakening the state's laws on disposing of radioactive waste.
If in doubt, externalize! -- RF
Enerflex shuts oilsands facility and cuts jobs amid squeezed margins
Oilfield services company Enerflex Ltd. is the latest entity in the Canadian oil patch to report compressed margins and job cuts as the oil price downturn continues to reverberate across the industry.

## Got food? ##
Internet, RIP? (Ron Paul)
Uber Security Breach Affected Up To 50,000 Drivers
A security breach at car service Uber may have disclosed the names and driver's license numbers of about 50,000 drivers across multiple states, the company said in a statement on Friday.
Personal info of 2 mln Beijing citizens leaked and sold

I mean it just doesn't get much more pathetic than this. Jeb Bush has such little genuine support, he was forced to bus in supporters from ground zero of American cronyism, K Street in Washington D.C., in order to ensure phony applause at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC).

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
Road rage endangers everyone (US)
The National Highway Traffic Safety Commission reported that the number of fatal accidents in which law enforcement officers listed "road rage" as a contributing factor has increased tenfold since 2004.

## Japan ##
Japan's small firms hold out for Abenomics trickle down
Government proposes SDF rescue of Japanese
The government on Friday proposed that the Self-Defense Forces be allowed to rescue Japanese nationals embroiled in terrorist attacks overseas if a rescue by local police authorities cannot be expected.
Abe aims to formally authorize SDF ship inspections beyond Japanese waters
The Abe administration proposed Friday expanding the geographic range of ship inspections that can be conducted by the Self-Defense Forces beyond Japan.

## China ##
China and the Dragon Tail of Marx
The dragon tail of Marx's end-game of overcapacity and finance capital is about to shred China's fantasy that the state can micro-manage both capitalism and financialization with no contradictions or consequences.
China farming boom has left ecosystems in danger of total collapse
China's push for more intense farming has kept its city dwellers well-fed and helped lift millions of rural workers out of poverty. But it has come at a cost. Ecosystems in what should be one of the country's most fertile region have already been badly damaged – some beyond repair – and the consequences will be felt across the world.
Britain's social mobility 'cold spots'
Babies born since the credit crunch could become first generation to seen their chances of climbing the ladder decline, warns mobility tsar Alan Milburn

## US ##
The Recovery, Unemployment, and Earnings Are All Based on Fraud and Accounting Gimmicks
For six years, we've been told that the US economy is in recovery. This is a totally bogus narrative that was dreamt up by the Central Planners running the Fed. Remember the "green shoots" craze of 2009. It was BS. The US economy is a disaster and has been since 2009.
Too Big to Fail (infographic)
Prison-industrial complex: US sells prisoners to the highest bidders

Thursday, February 26, 2015


News Links, February 27, 2015

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
Their Big, Fat Greek Bank Run: Bank Deposits Plunge To 2005 Levels
Greece Warns It May Default On IMF Loan Next Week
Ex-Plunge Protection Team Whistleblower: "Governments Control Markets; There Is No Price Discovery Anymore"
Oil Price Crash: Top 5 At-Risk Countries
Canada's oil sands cash flows to decline by $23-billion over two years
Petrobras hires JPMorgan for $3 billion in asset sales - sources
Hyper-Luxury Cars Are Now Selling Faster Than Normal Ones
Welcome to a new gilded age of driving in which sales of Ferraris grow faster than Fords
Israel Seen Preparing More Shocks for Shekel After Surprise Cut
Young Spaniards moving to Germany get trapped in dismal jobs
Samsung Electronics to freeze salaries in Korea for first time since 2009
ECB's Nowotny opposes ejecting Russia from SWIFT system: report
GM's Indonesia closure highlights automakers' emerging markets woes
General Motors Co's (GM.N) decision to shutter a car factory in Indonesia comes as global automakers rethink the timing and scope of investments in emerging markets once touted as engines of growth.
Major Firms Are Saying the Stage Is Set for Another Crisis in the Bond Market

## Airline Death Spiral ##
Southwest Grounds 128 Jets Over Missed Inspections
Southwest Airlines on Tuesday announced it grounded 128 jets after it failed to inspect hydraulic systems designed to serve as a back-up in case of trouble with the aircraft's rudder system.
Southwest Airlines Maintenance Snafu Raises Safety Concerns
SAA mulls ways to cut extra kilogrammes on flights
USED blankets, magazines and left-over food are some of the items South African Airways (SAA) is considering leaving behind in return long-distance flights to make an aircraft lighter and save on fuel costs.
Malaysia's AirAsia X to cut costs, may defer plane deliveries: Acting CEO
Malaysia's AirAsia X Bhd (AIRX.KL) will cut flights on unprofitable routes, reorganize staff and defer some aircraft deliveries to turn around the loss-making long-haul budget carrier, the airline's acting chief executive said on Wednesday.
Aer Lingus blames earnings dive on pension row

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
US-Israel quarrel intensifies over Netanyahu speech
Saudis Said to Aid Israeli Plan to Bomb Iran
As the Obama administration is rushing to complete a nuclear agreement with Iran and reduce regional tensions, the Israeli media is reporting on a deal with Saudi Arabia to let Israeli warplanes transit Saudi airspace en route to bombing Iran.
U.S. casts doubt on secret Iran nuke facility
The State Department on Thursday cast doubt on claims by an Iranian dissident group that it has discovered a secret underground Iranian nuclear facility.
Middle East Countries Wary Of Iran Sanctions Easing, Not Possible Nuclear Weapons
While the U.S. and Israel focus on the implications of Iran developing its nuclear program, some of Iran's regional adversaries are concerned about something else: the power that Iran's economy, unshackled from sanctions by a nuclear deal with the international community, would exert in the Middle East.
Central American Migrant Crisis: US Could See Another Border Surge This Year
Wary of Russia, Lithuania brings back conscription
Poland to Send Troops to Help Train Ukrainian Army
Emails From Kiev: Free Speech Vanishes, Total Media Thought Control; US Radar System Falls Into Rebel Hands?
Ukraine Enters The Endgame
Ukraine Rations Food; Interbank Rate New Record Low; Monetization of Bonds; "Devaluation Kerosene"; Electronics a Store of Value
The Real Ukraine Aggressor: IMF Burying Bankrupt Country In Debt To Fight Civil War
U.S. military vehicles paraded 300 yards from the Russian border (Estonia)
Houthi militiamen storm two military bases in Yemen
Breedlove: No substitute for permanent US military presence in Europe
China submarines outnumber U.S. fleet: U.S. admiral
China is building some "fairly amazing submarines" and now has more diesel- and nuclear-powered vessels than the United States, a top U.S. Navy admiral told U.S. lawmakers on Wednesday, although he said their quality was inferior.
Cyprus Signs Military Deal to Let Russian Navy Ships Dock
India to purchase Japanese military aircraft
Myanmar conflict: Chinese mercenaries said to be fighting with rebels

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Thai bill to restrict protests sails through first reading
Greek protesters clash with police in first backlash against Syriza

## Energy/resources ##
Top Oil Drillers Face Years Of Pain, Get A Grip On Cost
The world's biggest offshore drillers reported plunging earnings and orders on Thursday but managed to get a grip on costs to improve their chances of riding out a sectoral crisis that could last several more years.
EU chiefs launch biggest energy shake-up in half century
Maersk Positions Self for 'New Oil Reality' as Profit Fall
Denmark-based Maersk Drilling is positioning itself for a "new oil reality" of reduced tendering activity for offshore rigs and lower dayrates across all rig market segments by introducing cost-cutting and efficiency enhancement programs to boost its competitiveness in the current market.
Could Iranian Gas Be The Solution For Europe?
Junk: With Downgrade, No One Excited About Petrobras' Oil Finds Anymore
Nigeria's Future Depends On Electricity
OPEC Considers Emergency Meeting On Oil Prices
Russia Is Not Bluffing With Turkish Stream Project
European oil majors cut capex, eye output growth
Repsol cuts exploration Capex despite profit boost
Exxon Says Spending To Fall 11% This Year To $34B
Exxon Mobil Corp said spending will decline about 11 percent this year to around $34 billion due to plunging oil prices, according to a regulatory filing this week.
Whiting to cut Bakken rig deployments
S.Korea's nuclear watchdog approves restart of second-oldest reactor
Is the US Overplaying Its Energy Hand?

## Got food? ##
US Addiction to Corn and Cars Is Fueling Global Hunger and Displacement
Study links common food additives to Crohn's disease, colitis
Common additives in ice cream, margarine, packaged bread and many processed foods may promote the inflammatory bowel diseases ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease as well as a group of obesity-related conditions, scientists said on Wednesday.
Three-quarters of supermarket chickens carry food poisoning bug (UK)

## Environment/health ##
Smoking 'worse than previously thought': two thirds expected to die early (Australia)
Global warming: Australian deserts to expand as tropical circulation changes
Resistance: The Movie That Will Make You Care About Antibiotic Misuse
Dangerous infections now spreading outside hospitals
Resistant strain of swine flu feared; virus killing thousands
Overfishing driving slavery on Thailand's seafood boats
A report released Wednesday by the British nonprofit Environmental Justice Foundation says Thai fishing boats are now catching about 85 percent less than what they brought in 50 years ago, making it one of the most overfished regions on the planet.
Great Barrier Reef corals eat plastic
"If microplastic pollution increases on the Great Barrier Reef, corals could be negatively affected as their tiny stomach-cavities become full of indigestible plastic."
Want muscles? Rice is the new meat
Alberta tar sands pollution suspected in rare cancer cases
Medical tourism: Asia leads industry worth billions
Climate Change And Economy: Food Waste Costs Global Consumers $400B A Year While Boosting CO2 Emissions, Study Finds
Agricultural insecticides pose a global risk to surface water bodies

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
Anthem Hack: Millions of Non-Anthem Customers Could Be Victims
Health insurer Anthem said Tuesday that the recent major cyberattack on its systems may have affected 8.8 million to 18.8 million non-Anthem customers -- people who are or were insured by other Blue Cross Blue Shield providers.
Spy Cables: Greenpeace among intelligence targets
Numerous politicised spy requests sent to Pretoria, seeking information on 'rogue NGOs', politicians and exile groups.
Al Jazeera Journalists Arrested in Connection With Drones Over Paris
Google network learns to play Space Invaders in breakthrough for artificial intelligence
Canadian Spies Collect Domestic Emails in Secret Security Sweep
Chinese spies responsible for break-ins at African nuclear site: leaked documents
Secret Service Is Testing Fleet Of Drones To Protect The White House
Official Reports on the Damage Caused by Edward Snowden's Leaks Are Totally Redacted

## Propaganda ##
Why Does the FBI Have to Manufacture its Own Plots if Terrorism and ISIS Are Such Grave Threats?
Top 10 Bogus ISIS Stories
Americans Catching a New War Fever
The U.S. media/political elites are again riling up the American people about threats abroad, whether it's the hysterical reporting about Russia or the sensationalistic coverage of Islamic State atrocities. The results are showing with more Americans favoring more war.
Planting False Evidence on Iran
Prior to the U.S. intelligence community's 2007 assessment that Iran was not working on a nuclear weapons program, there was a scramble among U.S. and Israeli officials to show that it was. The CIA's Operation Merlin also revealed that U.S. officials were not above planting false evidence.
Long March of the Yellow Jackets: How a One-Time Terrorist Group Prevailed on Capitol Hill

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
Must read: The Externality Trap, or, How Progress Commits Suicide
Buzz Aldrin Urges U.S. to Establish Colony on Mars
Aldrin is still living in the past, when energy was cheap. Ain't gonna be no Mars colony. -- RF
Why It's So Difficult to Repair Stuff: It's Made That Way
Overshoot: Population: Four Out of Five Scientists Agree...
Enlisted leaders tell Congress budget uncertainties hurt morale
Role of Wages of the Common Worker in Oil Prices, Collapse
U.S. Healthcare and the Tragedy of the Commons
When the system is set up to encourage maximizing self-interest, accountability for the whole is lost.

## Japan ##
Weak spending to show Japan consumers unconvinced by Bank of Japan's stimulus
Fisheries 'shocked' at silence over water leak at wrecked Fukushima No. 1 plant
Revamping security policy: Japan eyes support to foreign forces without Diet's OK
Shipments of PCs fall 51.3%
Trio of approvals in Fukushima seals deal for radioactive soil dump

## China ##
China's population tops 1.36 billion
According to the National Bureau of Statistics, 7.1 million people were added to the national population in the past year. The data takes into account the total number born, 16.87 million, and offsets it with the dead, 9.77 million.
China drops leading technology brands for state purchases
Housing Crash in China Steeper than in Pre-Lehman America
Microsoft to close 2 China factories, cutting 9,000 jobs

## UK ##
Almost 700,000 people in UK have zero-hours contract as main job
Japan's former Prime Minister will warn Wales to learn from Fukushima disaster and stay nuclear-free
UK oil production revenues fall by £24b in 2014
EU regulations on genetically modified crops prevent Britain's agricultural progress, say MPs
Scottish plans for central identity database spark privacy criticism
British lakes see huge rise in toxic algae linked to Alzheimer's
Britain's lakes have seen a huge increase in toxic algae which is linked to Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease, scientists have warned.

## US ##
Slap by Florida cop highlights need for homeless rights, say advocates
Depression taking a bigger economic toll on US
Only one-quarter of Americans plan to retire
FedEx And UPS Refuse to Ship a Digital Mill That Can Make Untraceable Guns
Wage Theft Runs Rampant In New York: Report
Forced Blood Draws, DNA Collection and Biometric Scans: What Country Is This?
This Is Why Hewlett-Packard Is Firing 58,000——To Fund Massive Share Buybacks
Oil Bust Empties Out Private-Jet Parking Lot in Texas
Citigroup unit probed by more authorities over money laundering
U.S. refinery strike continues with no steps toward settlement
Baddest Bug: C. Diff Hits Half a Million Americans
Obstruction of Justice – New York Governor Andrew Cuomo Begins Purge of State Employee Emails
Hillary Clinton Exposed Part 2 – Clinton Foundation Took Millions From Countries That Also Fund ISIS
Capital Goods Shipments Tumble, 6th Miss In A Row
What Happens If The Department Of Homeland Security Shuts Down
Stock-market crash of 2016: The countdown begins

And finally...
Owner of revenge porn site asks Google to remove links to his own photos

Tuesday, February 24, 2015


News Links, February 25, 2015

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
Global Cooling Alert: Brazil Headed For Worst Economy Since 1930-1931
Burlap, cattle hides and other modern omens of a shrinking global economy
Freight shipping prices sink on oversupply, China slowdown
Record Low Baltic Dry Casualties Emerge: Third Dry-Bulk Shipper Files For Bankruptcy In Past 3 Weeks
Debt Gone Wild! 23 Countries Have Leverage Ratios Above 200 Percent (Debt Growth Escalates At Low Central Bank Rates)
"The Golden Age Of Asking Exorbitant Prices Is Over"
Grexit Drama Greenlighted for a 5th Season--New Characters, New Plot Twists
This is a scream. Brilliantly written, and captures the situation beautifully. -- RF
This Is The Biggest Problem Facing The World Today: 9 Countries Have Debt-To-GDP Over 300%
Making Me Pay For My Crimes Would Send "Message of Uncertainty to the Markets": Bank President to Spanish Judge
France to sell 6,500 government cars in bid to save €150m
Federal Reserve Insider Alan Greenspan Warns: There Will Be a "Significant Market Event… Something Big Is Going To Happen"
Nobel economist Shiller sees Japan-like slow growth everywhere
Azerbaijan devalues currency by a third over falling oil price
Widespread trouble spots as demand growth shrinks for raw goods
Oil slump threatens easy life of affluent Norwegians
Banks face scrutiny over pricing of precious metals: WSJ
France ponders changing school holidays to 'save ski industry'
JPMorgan to close 5 percent of bank branches to cut costs
JPMorgan tops list of risky banks: government study
Iran smuggles in $1 billion of bank notes to skirt sanctions - sources
One in three Germans say capitalism to blame for poverty, hunger
Alberta to bleed 31,800 jobs by end of year in oil price carnage
Alberta, the Canadian province holding the world's third-largest oil reserves, expects 31,800 jobs to be lost for the remainder of the year as a crude price crash forces producers to cut costs.

## Airline Death Spiral ##
Southwest Airlines also curbing rewards
Southwest Airlines is the latest airline to reduce the value of loyalty rewards.
Air India set to miss revenue target for February
Thai Airways International losses: No dividend again from ailing flag-carrier
The board of directors of Thai Airways International decided on Monday not to pay a dividend to shareholders for a second year running. In a statement released on Tuesday, the airline said dividends will not be paid for 2014. Results have yet to be released, but the carrier is expected to announce net losses for a second consecutive year. An announcement is due on Friday.
New flight paths cause turbulence for Phoenix neighborhoods
Gate to hell: Airport horror as passengers go wild
Angry at Delay, Shenzhen Passenger Threatens to Blow Up Airplane
Flight Attendants Don't Get Paid Enough For This
Delta cuts back flights at Georgia Regional Airport
Airlines lose on airport prosperity
Aer Lingus falls to full-year loss as costs rise
Japan's third biggest airline is bankrupt, but it's getting a lifeline from other carriers
U.S. Airlines Clash Over Rivals From Persian Gulf

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Iran ends mission defending western border against Islamic State
France Deploys Nuclear-Powered Aircraft Carrier In Persian Gulf To Fight ISIS
New Zealand to send troops to Iraq to train local forces
Special Report: How Iran's military chiefs operate in Iraq
ISIS Burns 8000 Rare Books and Manuscripts in Mosul

Kalashnikov Targeting Middle East Market
Russia offers to sell anti-aircraft missiles to Iran
Saudis Detail Eastern Fleet for US
The long-sought-after deal to upgrade and replace Saudi Arabia's Eastern Fleet has taken a major step forward, sources said, with the January delivery of a letter of request (LoR) to the US detailing Saudi wishes.
Ukraine War: A Reverse Cuban Missile Crisis
Guided by an aggressive neocon "regime change" strategy, the United States has stumbled into a potential military confrontation with Russia over Ukraine, a dangerous predicament that could become a Cuban Missile Crisis in reverse.

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
'Don't Touch the Fruits': HK Vendor Tells Off Mainland Shoppers
Shell pulls plug on long-delayed Alberta oil sands mine
Royal Dutch Shell PLC has scrapped plans for a long-delayed oil sands mine, becoming the latest company to pull the plug on a major Alberta expansion as crude prices hover near multiyear lows.
US Shale Oil's Crash Diet Likely To Bring Forward Output Dip
Shale oil producers are throttling back so quickly on drilling that U.S. crude output could fall sooner than expected, within months, executives say as they slash costs to cope with tumbling crude prices and compete with Persian Gulf rivals.
Nuclear renaissance: Areva May Get Cash, Tie-Ups With EDF Amid $5.6 Billion Loss
The French government is considering a capital injection for Areva SA as well as financial and industrial tie ups with Electricite de France SA and nuclear researcher CEA after the reactor builder reported a loss of about 4.9 billion euros ($5.6 billion) for 2014.
French Nuclear Industry Faces Shake-Up Amid Areva Loss
SoCal Edison: Need More Storage Space For Nuclear Fuel
The agency said the San Onofre facility, which has been offline for three years, will reach its capacity for storing used fuel soon.
Energy Markets: Significant Volatility and Deleveraging May Lie Ahead
Energy companies slash $50 billion from their 2015 budgets
Cut, baby, cut! -- RF

## Infrastructure scavenging ##
Hybrid Battery Thefts On The Rise In New York
Cable thieves leave hundreds in dark

## Got food? ##
Rent walkouts point to strains in U.S. farm economy
Across the U.S. Midwest, the plunge in grain prices to near four-year lows is pitting landowners determined to sustain rental incomes against farmer tenants worried about making rent payments because their revenues are squeezed.
US Offering Its 'Assistance' to Push GMOs on Africa: Report
U.S. is 'assisting African nations to produce biosafety laws that promote agribusiness interests instead of protecting Africans'

## Environment/health ##
Hospital Infections: Pathogens, Diseases Long Shared On Unclean Scopes And Other Medical Instruments
"Filthy, dangerous medical implements have been showing up in hospitals and outpatient surgery centers with alarming regularity."

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
'The Spy Cables': Al-Jazeera Teases Massive Global Intelligence Leak
Al-Jazeera is reporting that it has come into the possession of "hundreds of secret intelligence documents from the world's spy agencies" which, in partnership with The Guardian newspaper, will be detailed in a series of in-depth exposés beginning on Monday.
Big Barbie is Watching You – Meet the WiFi Connected Barbie Doll that Talks to Your Children and Records Them
Leaked cables show Netanyahu's Iran bomb claim contradicted by Mossad
Gulf between Israeli secret service and PM revealed in documents shared with the Guardian along with other secrets including CIA bids to contact Hamas
Yahoo executive and NSA chief clash over online data privacy
A Yahoo executive clashed with the new head of the National Security Agency at a conference on Monday as tensions continued to simmer between the Obama administration and Silicon Valley over the privacy of online data and new security technologies.

## Propaganda ##
The State Department's 'Twilight Zone'
The gap between reality and what the U.S. government says is reality has widened into a chasm with the mainstream U.S. news media usually nodding at whatever absurdity is presented, but the AP's Matthew Lee is one of the few reporters who challenges the State Department's "Twilight Zone."
U.S. and Israel Busted Lying About Iran's Nuclear Program
The making of Hillary 5.0: Marketing wizards help re-imagine Clinton brand

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
Starting from scratch: How to reboot society after an apocalypse
When Life Gives You Yemens

## Japan ##
Heir to Japanese throne appeals for 'correct' Second World War history
The heir to Japan's Chrysanthemum Throne has called on the nation to relay "correctly" the misery of World War II to future generations, a comment that is being seen as a rebuke to the present nationalistic government.

Everyone's talking about "peak steel". Zhang Guangning, chairman of the China Iron & Steel Association, (CISA) started it, when he told the Association's annual conference in January that "China's steel sector has already entered a period of peaking and flattening out."
Green cars still far from taking off in China

## UK ##
Separate collections needed to solve London's food waste crisis
The three leading subprime categories are auto loans, credit cards, and student debt. $189 billion in subprime loans made in 2014.
If investment broker Peter Schiff was president, no one would go hungry and the "mentally retarded" would work all of society's worst jobs for $2 an hour. The multi-millionaire made the assertion in an interview with Samantha Bee from Jon Stewart's "Daily Show," during which he also argued that raising the minimum wage will have catastrophic consequences and that federal assistance programs are destroying the U.S. economy.

Sunday, February 22, 2015


News Links, February 23, 2015

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
IMF/EU At Work: Sinking Ukraine In Massive, Unrepayable Debts
Chart Of The Day: 90 Percent Of Industrialized Economies With Policy Rates Near Or Below Zero
Debtors' Prison: Global Debt Has Grown $57 TRILLION Since 2007 With 100 Percent Of Sovereign Debt Monetized
What the ECB Has to Do to "Prevent a Market Meltdown": French Megabank
The truth is out: money is just an IOU, and the banks are rolling in it
Alberta to close three diplomatic trade offices in spending cuts
The Alberta government is shuttering three of its diplomatic outposts and suspending plans to open two more in the latest sign that low oil prices are forcing the province to check its ambitions during a time of austerity.
Russia Cut to Junk by Moody's on Ukraine Crisis, Oil Price Fall
De-Dollarization: Russia Ratifies $100 Billion BRICS Bank
5 Reasons Brazil is Getting Close to the Brink
Australians are once again flocking to London to find work
Alarming report reveals rampant poverty across Europe
More than a third of the population in Bulgaria, Romania, Greece, Latvia and Hungary are at risk of poverty and social exclusion, according to a new report. In half of the EU's 28 member states, at least one in three children live in poverty.
West Coast port dispute costing Honda 25,000 vehicles
Greece gets four-month loan extension, averts bankruptcy
Greece Readies Reform Promises After Eurogroup Climbdown
Afghan central bank branch employees raid their own bank

## Airline Death Spiral ##
Virgin Australia Holdings Ltd posts $53 million loss
New Hawaiian Air terminal already delayed one year
Flight Staff Victim of Another Air Rage Incident
Why flying stinks, and you're still paying more
American Airlines Strands Luggage From Multiple Flights In Miami; Blames 'Technical Issue'
'They can't keep brushing this under the carpet', says victim of aerotoxic syndrome
What is aerotoxic syndrome?
Pilots' retirement age to be raised to 67 to cope with shortage
The Japanese transport ministry has decided to raise the retirement age for airline pilots to 67 from 64 to cope with a shortage in pilots.
Japan to get Asia's first jet biofuel refinery
This won't amount to a hill of beans. -- RF
Three Wyoming airports facing steep federal cuts

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Ukraine Crisis: UK, EU Made 'Catastrophic' Errors In Reading Russia's Mood, Report Says
The Draft Dodgers of Ukraine
One Year After Washington Installed "Yats": Ukraine's Economy Has Been Shattered
Kerry Says Further Sanctions on Russia Will Be Discussed Over Ukraine
Pro-Kiev militias are fighting Putin, but has Ukraine created a monster it can't control?
Prominent French Journalist Calls For France-Germany-Russia Alliance
Pro-Islamic State Militants Seize Libyan University: Residents
Libyan Islamic Militants Bomb Iranian Ambassador's Residence In Tripoli; No Injuries Reported
ISIS Chemical Weapons Libya: Military Warns Islamic State Might Have Mustard Gas, Sarin
U.S. Official: American Forces May Help Iraq Retake Mosul
US rhetoric collides with Iraqi reality in fight against Islamic State
An Iraqi military officer said Friday his nation's troops will need six months to get ready to retake the city of Mosul from Islamic State, undercutting a U.S. statement that the assault would begin as early as April.
ISIS Airstrikes: French Carrier To Bomb Islamic State In Iraq And Syria Soon, Defense Officials Say
New Defense Secretary hosts U.S. gathering on Islamic State strategy
Myanmar-China Border Conflict: Officials Call On Beijing To Stop Facilitating Rebel Groups
Unwelcome mat: White House tries to counter Netanyahu visit
Turkey Launches Military Operation Into Syria To Evacuate Troops Guarding Tomb, Says State TV
Sydney Siege Report Signals Tighter Immigration Curbs In Australia
Yemen's Hadi flees to Aden and says he is still president
Iran sends high-level negotiators to Geneva nuclear talks
New Silk Road taking shape with freight train from Yellow Sea to Kazakhstan
China on Wednesday will begin twice-weekly freight service along a 5,600km railway between Lianyungang, Jiangsu Province, and resource-rich Kazakhstan. The new transport corridor is part of Chinese President Xi Jinping's Silk Road Economic Belt scheme.
Beijing builds infrastructure and influence in Asia
Looking to up its influence in the region, China is using its growing financial clout to fund infrastructure development throughout Asia.
S. Korea publishes pamphlets to promote claim to isles disputed with Japan
Palestine threatens to cut security ties with Israel

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Saudi King unleashes a torrent of money as bonuses flow to the masses
Tens of thousands of Argentines march to demand answers about dead prosecutor
Industrial unrest hits West Bengal again
Rallies held as water crisis intensifies in Karachi
Hundreds Protest Police Shooting of Violent Illegal Immigrant (Graphic Video)
Anti-Israel Protest Shuts British Factory of Drone Producer
Brazilian Truckers Protest Fuel-Tax Increase

## Energy/resources ##
Fracking Bust Deepens, Sets Records
In the latest reporting week reported Friday, drillers idled an additional 34 oil rigs. Now only 1,019 rigs are still drilling for oil, down 590 rigs from the October peak, a 37% plunge in 19 weeks. The steepest rig-count plunge in the data series.
Nuclear renaissance: Is There Any Hope Left For Nuclear Energy?
Summer blackouts looming – DOE (Philippines)
2-hour rotating brownouts hit Metro Cebu homes, establishments (Philippines)
Shale Producers Postpone Oil Well Completions
U.S. refinery strike widens to include country's largest refinery
Taps Start to Run Dry in Brazil's Largest City
Water shortages a problem in cities across Iran
Sub-Saharan Africa's electricity demand to quadruple by 2040: McKinsey
The US proposes the first-ever federal regulations for Arctic oil and gas drilling
What is Saudi Arabia not telling us about its oil future?

## Infrastructure scavenging ##
Indianapolis sees surge of metal thefts

## Got food? ##
Inside the food industry: the surprising truth about what you eat
Organic farming continues to rise across the globe
For the First Time, USDA Approves Fruit Genetically Engineered for Aesthetic Reasons
Food shortage in the Sahel imminent – FAO
Modi bets on GM crops for India's second green revolution

## Environment/health ##
Drug-resistant malaria continues to spread
Superbug cases spur FDA warning on dirty medical scopes
Los Angeles hospital 'superbug' takes toll on infected
New Killer Virus Found in Kansas
Infections Of Deadly Superbug Reported In North Carolina
DailyDirt: Plastic Is Everywhere, Run For Your Lives
Evolution is making nature bigger and bigger
Feral cats, foxes driving Australia's mammals to extinction: study
Natural gas drilling is causing earthquakes in Europe too
USGS Confirms Oklahoma Quakes Are Due To Fracking
What Singapore Can Teach All Cities About Using Urban Green Infrastructure To Mitigate Megadroughts
In the final analysis, however, all big cities are unsustainable. -- RF
Cluster of fracking quakes in Alberta prompts tougher rules for shale drilling region
Balkan dam boom threatens Europe's last wild waterways
More is known about rivers in the Amazon than Europe's last wild waterways in the Balkans. But these unique ecosystems in southeast Europe could soon be gone, along with endangered species such as the Balkan lynx, if plans for over 2,000 dams go ahead, conservationists warn.
HIV strain found in Cuba could be the most aggressive ever studied in humans

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
"We Messed Up Badly" Lenovo Admits Putting Tracking Software On Your PC
Cars Are Delivering Tons Of Driving Data To Manufacturers With Minimal Security And Even Less Transparency
Hackers Still Camping Out In State Department's 'Secure' Email Server Three Months After Initial Break-In
Is the Web Destroying the Cultural Economy?

## Propaganda ##
The 1 reason Pope Francis is becoming the world's top capitalist
Pontiff's embrace of anti-birth-control dogma plays into the hands of perpetual-growth worshipers.
US Government Isn't Promoting Unrest In Venezuela: US State Department

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
Mass Immigration Proposed As Solution To Japan's Population Problem
States scramble as federal highway funding erodes (US)
As drivers travel aging roads and crumbling bridges, federal highway funding is failing to keep pace with inflation in nearly every state.

## Japan ##
As societies begin to crumble owing to net energy decline, this is the general direction they will head in order to quell unrest and maintain order. And keep watching for martial law. -- RF
Vast majority in Japan haven't felt improvement in economy
The recovery in Japan's economy has yet to reach the public, according to Nikkei Inc.'s latest opinion poll, with 81% of respondents saying they have not sensed any tangible improvement.
Govt aims to commercialize seafloor mining in 2020s
The government is aiming to commercialize the mining of rich seafloor deposits around Japan of such mineral resources as copper in the 2020s, according to officials.
Given the doubts about commercial viability, this is an indicator of increasing desperation. -- RF

## China ##
China Buys More Gold Than The World Produces
Youth unemployment rate is worst for 20 years, compared with overall figure
Britain cannot defend itself against Putin's military might, top brass warn
Former RAF chief says that Britain's defences have been 'decimated' and would not survive a Russian air attack

## US ##
The Bad Cop Database: A radical new idea for keeping tabs on police misconduct.
Auto loans, student debt, and credit card debt surge in latest report. Total non-housing debt now at $3.15 trillion.
Subprime Pump-and-Dump Frenzy Heats Up
Subprime auto loans become triple-A rated structured securities
US East Coast refineries seize up as deep freeze strikes
Sub-zero winter temperatures disrupted more than two-thirds of the U.S. East Coast's oil refining capacity on Friday, freezing rivers, upsetting cooling systems and hindering maintenance work.
Police seize property and cash in questionable raids
Police seized more than $24 million in assets from Michiganders in 2013, under asset forfeiture laws. In many cases the citizens were never charged with a crime but lost their property anyway.
Fuel-hauling trains could derail at 10 a year
The federal government predicts that trains hauling crude oil or ethanol will derail an average of 10 times a year over the next two decades, causing more than $4 billion in damage and possibly killing hundreds of people if an accident happens in a densely populated part of the U.S.

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