Tuesday, January 24, 2017


News Links, January 25, 2017

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards/global cooling/deflationary collapse ##
The shipping industry continues to take on water. -- RF
Three Theories Behind the Global Productivity Slowdown
It never ceases to amaze me how "the experts" can overlook the obvious: net energy decline. One reason cited here for the leaps in productivity of earlier years is that "today's innovations do not compare in scale or impact with the breakthroughs of the 1990s let alone the wave of earlier transformations bringing urban sanitation, electricity, the telephone, television and commercial flight." The real key here — and I've seen this observation made elsewhere — is the improvements in the daily lives of workers: indoor plumping, electricity, sewerage, heating, transportation, and all the other so-called "modern conveniences." And what, pray tell, made these improvements possible, and on such a vast scale? It was none other than the high net energy delivered by fossil fuels in those days. Instead of looking at money, which just stands for energy, the experts need to look at energy. And instead of looking at barrels of oil or tons of coal or the number of wind turbines, they need to look at the quality of the energy, i.e., the net energy of the system, to understand why industrial society is failing. -- RF
Although China discarded its one-child policy and allows people to have a second child, many people still don't have a second child. The reason is of course net energy decline. Especially in developed countries, it takes a lot of energy to raise and educate a child. It's all downhill from here. -- RF

## Cut, baby, cut! ##
Boeing To Start Trump Era With New Wave Of Downsizing

## Airline death spiral ##
United Airlines Domestic Flights Grounded for 2 Hours by Computer Outage
Like Singapore, Dubai has little other than too many mouths to feed. When Dubai falls — and it is going to fall hard — it will have a proportionate impact on the airline industry. -- RF

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
How Clinton Defeat Derailed Syrian War
Hawkish think tanks had laid plans for escalating the U.S. "regime change" war in Syria after Hillary Clinton's expected election, but a different result has forced them to repackage their scheme.
First Day of Syria Talks Show No Sign of Progress
Syrian rebels and government officials attended their first day of peace talks in Astana, which saw them meeting face to face for the first time in the entire war. The meeting was far from cause for celebration, however, as the two sides angrily traded barbs, and threatened to leave.
US Declines to Send a Delegation to Syria Peace Talks
US Ambassador Will Attend Astana Talks, However
Russia's Leery Reaction to President Trump
Russian leaders remain leery about prospects for improved U.S. relations despite the inauguration of President Trump, doubting that he can overcome the political pressures from Washington's "deep state."
Get Ready for the First Shocks of Trump's Disaster Capitalism

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Protesters Take Control of Mexican Border Crossing With US
Protesters took control of vehicle lanes at one of the busiest crossings on the U.S. border Sunday to oppose Mexican gasoline price hikes, waving through motorists into Mexico after Mexican authorities abandoned their posts.

## Energy/resources ##

## Got food? ##
The dark side of farming: Surface stoicism can mask struggles with mental illness
He wakes up each morning at 5 a.m. to chore. His teeth are clenched and they had been all night. He's wondering how he's going to make ends meet that day. Hog prices are down. And the crops haven't received enough moisture to mature. His farm, like most, depends on the use of borrowed money. And the bank wants a report.
The cost of your sumptuous shrimp-and-calamari meal: the migrating Indian fishermen's torturous lives

## Environment/health ##

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
This Company Has Built a Profile on Every American Adult
Every move you make. Every click you take. Every game you play. Every place you stay. They'll be watching you.
Protest in the Era of Trump
The best way to control the opposition is to lead it.
Need to Reorganize US Spy Agencies
On President Trump's first full day in office, he went to the CIA and promised to back the nation's spy agencies, but his time would be better spent downsizing the sprawling intelligence community.

## Propaganda/censorship/fake news/alternative facts ##
Cambridge scientists consider fake news 'vaccine'
America's Putin Derangement Syndrome
The mainstream U.S. media blames Russian President Putin for pretty much everything – from the Mideast mess to Europe's disorder to the U.S. elections – but the reality is quite different.

The Protected, Privileged Establishment vs. The Working Class
Meanwhile, back in reality, household income for the bottom 95% has declined while the owners of capital and their privileged, protected servants in the Establishment have gorged themselves on private wealth.
Researchers calculate economic cost of major solar storm, and it's big
An electricity blackout caused by a major solar storm could cost the United States tens of billions of dollars a day, according to new research.
The focus on economic cost gives the impression that such a blackout would be less disruptive than it would actually be. Because modern society needs electricity to do virtually everything, panic would be the order of the day, especially when the public experiences first-hand the fragility of industrial/technological society.

## US ##
Like his predecessors, Trump doesn't understand what enabled the building of all this infrastructure and an enormous industrialized military, or why this can't ever be done again. Like Obama, Trump will be blamed for America's downhill slide, when in fact there is little anyone can do because collapse is baked into the cake. -- RF
The Collapse of the Left
The Left is not just in disarray--it is in complete collapse because the working class has awakened to the Left's betrayal and abandonment of the working class in favor of building personal wealth and power.
If the objective is a truly democratic political/electoral system, the Democratic Party's plan is a loser from the get-go. They aren't interested in democracy, merely in winning. Again, the US needs to widen the political spectrum by allowing the meaningful participation of parties and candidates other than the War Party. -- RF
Financialization of Rents Gets Taxpayer Guarantees
Government buckles, guarantees rental-home mortgage-backed securities for first time ever. Wall Street wins again.
In reversing the Obama administration policy to disapprove the Keystone pipeline, Trump emphasized that the construction isn't a done deal.

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