Sunday, December 20, 2015


News Links, December 21, 2015

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards/global cooling/deflationary collapse ##
Global Deflation Alert—-Mind The Slow Boats From China
Ukraine Defaults on $3 Billion Bond to Russia
Argentinians Are Now Poorer Than Citizens Of Equatorial Guinea After Massive Devaluation
For Caterpillar, The Depression Just Turned Three: CAT Hasn't Had A Sales Increase In 36 Consecutive Months
Greece's jobless rate drops to 24 pct in third quarter
Canadian Dollar Crashes To 12-Year Low After Collapse In Consumer Prices
Dollar-Debt Blows up in Mexico, Pushes Biggest Construction Firm toward Abyss
135 jobs in two-and-a-half years: the plight of Spain's new working poor
History of Junk Bond Meltdowns Points to Trouble
This is how much money exists in the entire world, in one chart
There is $1.2 quadrillion invested in derivatives alone.
The problem in Bangladesh's garment industry is three times bigger than anyone suspected
Banks will quintuple spending on blockchain by 2019
Brazil speeds leniency for corrupt firms to save jobs
These are the African countries that will be most affected by the Fed's rate hike
Hedge Fund Gold Positioning Has Never Been This Extreme

## Cut, baby, cut! ##
Citi to cut 2,000 jobs starting next month

## War on cash/cashless society ##
Apple partners with UnionPay to launch payment service in China
Target in initial development of own mobile wallet - sources

## Airline death spiral ##
Passengers removed from international flight departing IAH due to suspicious act
The suspicious act was talking in Arabic. But wait, was it Arabic? Probably any foreign language sounds like "Arabic" to Americans. -- RF
Jet2 bans 50 passengers for all times over unruly behaviour
Jetliner's Low-Fuel Landing Draws U.S. FAA Reprimand to Airline
Passengers scrambled for oxygen masks as London-bound plane descended 32,000 ft
'Fortunately we could still breathe in the cabin but if a window had gone out, people would have died'
Air France flight from Mauritius to Paris diverts over bomb scare
Coming to LAX: 13 'comfort dogs' for frazzled fliers

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
How United Is Saudi Arabia's New Anti-Terror Coalition?
But within days [of the coalition's launch announcement], officials in Pakistan, Malaysia and Indonesia — all listed as part of that coalition — denied that they had ever agreed to join the alliance.
ISIS stole sarin gas from Libya stores and has already used it, Gaddafi's cousin tells RT
U.S. coalition 'friendly fire' airstrike kills 10 Iraqi soldiers
Under US Pressure, Turkey Agrees to Pull Troops From Iraq
Neocons Object to Syrian Democracy
President Obama has infuriated Official Washington's neocons by accepting the Russian stance that the Syrian people should select their own future leaders through free elections, rather than the neocon insistence on a foreign-imposed "regime change."
Defense budgets swell as countries fight terror on every street
US Air Force to allow non-officers to fly drones for first time
America First – or World War III
China accuses U.S. of 'serious military provocation' for flying bomber near disputed islands
US says B52 flight over Spratly Islands 'may have strayed off course'
Iran ready to ship enriched uranium stockpile to Russia
"Secret" Norwegian Report Details ISIS-Turkey Oil Trade As UN Vows To "Cut Off" Terrorist "Funding Sources"
When All Else Fails, Erdogan Calls Israel
The restoration of relations with Israel is less a political reconciliation than an admission of the utter bankruptcy of Turkey's last five years of diplomatic endeavor.
Big Business, Big Guns and Big Lies in Africa
Putin Blasts Interventionist US Foreign Policy, Calls Forcible Regime Change "Intolerable"

## Migrants/refugees ##
Warming World of Chaos Fueling Global Refugee Crisis Never Before Seen
Surge in Children, Families at the U.S. Border May Be the 'New Normal'
Supplies low for refugees stuck on tiny Pacific island

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Road rage is fuelling China's SUV boom
Road rage spiking in Fox Cities
Hate Attacks on Muslims in U.S. Spike After Recent Acts of Terrorism
Workers Are Fighting Back as Economic Dream Fades

## Energy/resources ##
At these prices, 70% of oilsands is underwater and losing up to $3 on every barrel
Carnage in US Natural Gas as Price Falls off the Chart
2016 Commodity Collapse Winner—-Molybdenum Prices Down 49%
Statoil cancels Transocean rig contract
OPEC Members In Jeopardy, How Long Can They Hold Out?
Oil industry to lose 100,000 jobs by the end of 2015 as policy uncertainties, low prices decimate sector
Siberian Surprise: Russian Oil Patch Just Keeps Pumping
Oil supply from non OPEC members to decline sharply in 2016
International Energy Agency sees 'peak coal' as demand for fossil fuel crumbles in China
Drop in world coal consumption predicted
Disputes Freeze Hopes for South China Sea Oil, Gas Development

## Infrastructure scavenging ##
Barcelona Trains Disrupted Following Copper Cable Theft

## Got food? ##
Butter shortage forces Canada's dairy commission to import 8.8-million pounds of butter as cream supply dries up
Tomato-harvesting robots developed

## Environment/health ##
Why That Study About How Vegetarians Are Killing the Environment Is Ridiculously Wrong
US soda sales keep falling, and 2016 doesn't look any better
Groundwater depletion adding to global sea-level rise
Increasing amounts of water are being depleted from the world's aquifers, and scientists have estimated that a large portion of the water ends up flowing into the oceans.
California's Worst Gas Leak In 40 Years (And Crews Can't Stop It)
Iran closes capital's schools due to air pollution
Lifestyle gets blame for 70% to 90% of all cancers

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
Hacker group aims to take down Xbox Live and PlayStation Network for Christmas
Brazil's WhatsApp Ban Reveals A Big, Scary Problem For Everyone
A Secret Catalogue of Government Gear for Spying on Your Cellphone
Senators Want Social Media Firms to Hunt for Terrorists
Poland's New Government Raided a NATO Intel Facility in the Dark of Night
I gave my students iPads. They stopped talking to each other.
Paul Ryan Sneaks Massive Surveillance Bill Into $1.1 Trillion Must Pass Spending Legislation
Secret Code Found in Juniper's Firewalls Shows Risk of Government Backdoors
It Must Be Christmas Time, Because Target Is Losing People's Personal Information Again
97 Anonymous hacking cases in Japan since Sept
Combatting Cargo Theft
According to FreightWatch International, cargo thieves continue to adopt increasingly "professional and sophisticated" tactics.
Pentagon ponders cyberattacks on Islamic State

## Propaganda ##
Twisting the Facts on Iran Nukes
Part of the credibility crisis afflicting the world's officialdom is the tendency to issue reports that start with the politically desired conclusion and then twist words and facts accordingly, a problem apparent in a U.N. report on Iran's alleged nuclear program.
ISIS Takes to Airwaves, Transmits Fatwas in Jalalabad, Afghanistan
Al Jazeera Blocks Anti-Saudi Arabia Article
A Showcase of Tibetan Culture Serves Chinese Political Goals
Anti-Wikipedian Translation At China's Internet Conference

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
The Devil's Holiday Letter: 2015
10 Breakthrough Technologies 2015
I disagree. There is little here that could be called "breakthrough." Almost everything achieved in the last half century has consisted of improvements and remixes of basic technologies that were discovered in the period ending about 1970, when oil suddenly became substantially more expensive. Interested readers might review this essay, which was linked to several months ago. Although it is widely believed that new technologies bring us more energy (which may hold to a certain, limited extent), in reality it is the opposite: the pace of technological progress is determined by energy. -- RF
Report: Alabama's crumbling roads cost every driver $300/year in car maintenance & repairs
The Key to Human History: Ultrasociality?

## Japan ##
Japan's far-flung island defense plan seeks to turn tables on China
Tokyo Olympics budget six times more than original estimate
Loneliness grows as 3/11 evacuees vacate temporary housing
Even though the tens of thousands of evacuees from the March 2011 earthquake, tsunami and ensuing Fukushima nuclear disaster are still living in temporary housing, many others have moved on, making virtual ghost towns out of once busy communities.
Toshiba likely to suffer huge net loss in fiscal 2015
The Bank of Japan's $2.5 Billion Plan to Buy Non-Existent ETFs
Fukui governor to give consent for nuclear plant restart
Nuclear power plants feared vulnerable to terrorist groups
Only 16% of Fukushima residents knew of emergency declaration
The government's declaration of a nuclear emergency on March 11, 2011, reached only 16.5 percent of residents in Fukushima Prefecture by the following day, according to a Cabinet Office survey.
80% think East Asian security is getting tougher
China concerns, base relocation push defense budget to record 5 trillion yen in FY 2016
Youths take lead in protests against security laws 3 months after passage

## China ##
Red Ponzi Alert—-China's Beige Book Shows Deterioration On all Fronts
Beijing grinds to halt as second ever 'red alert' issued over severe smog
China's Renminbi Is Plunging At A Historic Rate, Raising Fears For Chinese Economy
China's Copper Cartel Braces For Further Production Cuts
Chinese Families Reluctant to Let Go of One-Child Model
State planners who scrapped China's notorious one-child policy are running into a major obstacle as they try to boost
the nation's birthrate: couples who say they can't afford a second child.

## UK ##
Number of London renters becoming homeless increases 700% in five years
Dark Christmas ahead for nearly 1,000 axed staff of solar panel company
One third of 'terrorist response vehicles' to be scrapped to save money
UK homebuyers must save for 24 years to afford first property, says new study

## US ##
Peter Schiff warns next Federal Reserve move will be return to QE amid 2016 recession
43 million households in rentals, up 9 million from 2005 creating largest 10-year increase in history.
Trump supporters are most likely to favor military intervention in Agrabah, with 41% advocating the destruction of the flat, immense, and entirely nonexistent desert regime.

## The candidates ##
Trump's Big, New, Stalinesque Idea: Collective Punishment
75 percent of Donald Trump's statements have been lies, fact-checkers prove
How Trump and ISIS Help Each Other
'Donald Trump Is A Jerk,' Says Jeb Bush At Town Hall Meeting On Saturday
The Myth of Consumer-Driven Growth
Bernie Sanders King Abdullah Democratic Debate Comment: A Brief History Of Socialist Vermont Senator Praising Jordan's Ruler
At Christmas Themed Rally, Donald Trump Calls Hillary Clinton a 'Snake'
AP FACT CHECK: Glossed-over realities in Democratic debate
AP FACT CHECK: Clinton's video claim doesn't hold up
GOP Candidate Hysteria About Terrorism Is Rank Political Demagoguery
Pants on fire! Donald Trump Calls Hillary Clinton A Liar, Bernie Sanders Calls Trump A Liar
Trump, Sanders say U.S. should not try to topple dictators

And finally...
'Star Wars' Fans Lose Their Minds When Theater Projector Breaks
The strange, imaginative excuses American college students try to use with their professors
Angry single men stage anti-Christmas rally in Tokyo, claim they are discriminated against

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