Thursday, October 05, 2017


News Links, October 6, 2017

But the article does not take net energy decline into account. The new world order (for lack of a better term) will be on a much smaller scale than the old world order. -- RF
Across the country, tiny airports are at risk. Sixty-one per cent of small aerodromes ran at a loss in 2014-15.
Budget airlines 'poisoning' their own wells?
Europe's budget airlines may be 'poisoning their own wells' by focusing on keeping costs as low as possible and not 'nurturing' key staff including pilots, commentators say.
Russia's reasoning is simple: If the North Korean regime falls, more US troops could deploy near Russia's eastern border – an eventuality that Moscow would like to avoid, given the NATO buildup in Europe.
Russia Military Accuses U.S. Of Supporting ISIS
How Did Things Get So Bad in Catalonia? Will Spain trigger Article 155 of the Constitution?
Mattis reveals new rules of engagement
U.S. forces are no longer bound by requirements to be in contact with enemy forces in Afghanistan before opening fire, thanks to a change in rules of engagement orchestrated by Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis.
Israeli Prime Minister pledges new West Bank housing annexed to Israel
Israel's prime minister on Tuesday pledged to build thousands of new homes in one of the West Bank's biggest Jewish settlements and annex it to Israel.

Dirty Water in U.S. Shale Patch Drives Investment in Water Handlers
Huge volumes of dirty water produced by U.S. shale firms are driving up investment in water-handling specialists, as cash-conscious oil and gas companies try to trim costs.

## Environment/health ##
Vast animal-feed crops to satisfy our meat needs are destroying planet
WWF report finds 60% of global biodiversity loss is down to meat-based diets which put huge strain on Earth's resources
Obesity linked to 13 types of cancer
Puerto Rico's death toll from Hurricane Maria more than doubles to 34
Endocrine disruptors: Report exposes scale of contamination as Parliament vote looms
More than one-third of all fruit consumed in the EU is contaminated with residues of endocrine disrupting pesticides, according to a study published on Tuesday (3 October).
The bitter truth is that a sugar tax alone won't stop Asia's obesity epidemic
Central Indian floods have tripled: study
Violent floods in central India have tripled since 1950, according to researchers who warned Tuesday of worse to come  while offering hope for predicting them better in future.
Sydney, Melbourne warned to prepare for 50-degree days
UN chief: Scientists say extreme storms will be 'new normal'
Cats kill one million birds a day in Australia
25 species, including Pacific walrus, denied endangered protection by Trump administration
Not so sweet: 75 percent of honey samples had key pesticide
When researchers collected honey samples from around the world, they found that three-quarters of them had a common type of pesticide suspected of playing a role in the decline of bees. Even honey from the island paradise of Tahiti had the chemical.

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
No Airport Biometric Surveillance
Facial recognition, fingerprinting, and retina scans—all of these and more could be extracted from travelers by the government at checkpoints throughout domestic airports.
On Thursday, at a national security meeting in Canberra, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is expected to pressure states and territories to hand over the driver's license photos of every citizen, which would be added to the federal government's database of passport and citizenship application photos.
This Isn't A Joke! The IRS Just Hired Equifax To Safeguard Taxpayer Data
Reality increasingly threatens to put satirists out of work. You can't make this stuff up! And in case you were wondering why the USA is going down the tubes... -- RF
The theft included information on penetrating foreign computer networks and protecting against cyber attacks and is likely to be viewed as one of the most significant security breaches to date, the newspaper reported.

## Propaganda/censorship/fake news/alternative facts ##
Google CEO: 'I feel the pain' every time we publish fake news
Shameless Saudi Propaganda and the War on Yemen
The New York Times inexplicably gives the Saudi ambassador to the U.N. a platform to recite some propaganda.
Only the government's cockamamie conspiracy theories (e.g., "the Russians did it") are allowed. "Authoritative" news sources are those which hew to the approved line. In a free society, people should be allowed to present other theories, and argue the merits of their cases using evidence and logic. And citizens should likewise use logic and common sense to decide which theories they wish to subscribe to. What's evolving here is a China-style system in which the government and its allied mainstream media decide what is approved (i.e., the "truth"), and withhold their imprimatur from unapproved sources. -- RF
With both Facebook and Twitter being hauled up before a congressional committee "investigating" this alleged Russian conspiracy – Facebook subsequently purged hundreds of accounts in response to political pressure, while Twitter did likewise – the motives of the witch-hunters are transparently obvious. What the "investigators" and their allies want is government censorship of the internet, which will be rationalized by accusations of "foreign influence" on the US political scene.
The Mystery of the Russia-gate Puppies
The U.S. mainstream media is determined to prove Russia-gate despite the scandal's cracking foundation and its inexplicable anomalies, such as why Russia would set up a Facebook "puppies" page.

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
Thousands of Tales of Torment from the Nation's Worst Transit System

## Japan ##

## China ##

## UK ##
Theresa May urged to sack Boris Johnson over Libya 'dead bodies' remark
Boris Johnson's suggestion that a Libyan city could become the next Dubai once it had "cleared the dead bodies away" was "not appropriate", a spokesman for Theresa May has said. 
Patients died of heart failure and went blind after operation delays at failing hospital, report reveals
Backlash against social media as children would be 'happy' if it did not exist

## US ##
Which Automakers Got Crushed and Which Boomed?
Hurricane Harvey and highest discounts in history boost auto sales.
America's Hypocrisy on Democracy
U.S. politicians often lecture other nations about their flawed governance as if American democracy is the gold standard, but anti-democratic measures like gerrymandering belie that self-image.

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