Sunday, November 12, 2017


News Links, November 13, 2017

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards/global cooling/deflationary collapse ##
Retail Apocalypse? Deflationary Collapse? (US)
Global Banks, City of London Raise "Disorderly Brexit" Alarm
Shifting trillions of euros of derivatives positions could be hugely disruptive.
Alibaba's Singles' Day Goes Global With Record $25 Billion in Sales
"We want to make Singles' Day a more global event," said Zhang during an interview in Shanghai. "We could take the gala overseas very soon."
Global Gold Investment Demand To Overwhelm Supply During Next Market Crash
How Equifax Explained its Coming Nightmare
"It is not possible to estimate the amount of loss or range of possible loss."

State Department offering buyouts to reduce ranks
The U.S. State Department is offering buyouts of up to $25,000 in an effort to trim 641 employees from its ranks, department officials said Saturday.

## War on cash/cashless society ##
A year on, Indian demonetization costs outweigh the benefits
Withdrawal symptoms: cash is still king in India, Modi not so much
Instead of being usable currencies, cryptos – CoinMarketCap lists nearly 1,300 of them, with many of them already worthless – are a form of online betting based on a new technology, and they're subject to different dynamics than classic online betting, but not regulated or forbidden by governments, unlike classic online betting.

Last month, Flybe issued a profit warning, citing higher than expected aircraft maintenance costs, and said it aimed to improved the reliability of the Bombardier Q400 in particular.

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Pakistan Could Have as Many As 130 Nuclear Weapons 
How Saudi Arabia Sows Instability
U.S. propaganda claims Iran causes Mideast instability, but the truth is that Saudi Arabia – from backing Islamic extremists to blockading and bombing Yemen – is the real culprit.
The Saudi Hand in Lebanon's Crisis
Facing defeat in its proxy war for "regime change" in Syria, Saudi Arabia undertook some startling moves, including staging the resignation of Lebanon's prime minister.
Saudi Arabia's Desperate Gamble
Furious over defeat in Syria, Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince is gambling again, arresting rivals at home and provoking a political crisis in Lebanon, but he may lack the geopolitical chips to pull off his bet.
In Shifting ISIS War, US Scrambles to Build West Iraq Outposts
Officials are loudly trumpeting the idea that, with the fall of al-Qaim in Iraq and Abu Kamal in Syria, ISIS is "defeated," and has lost their "last" strongholds in both countries. In reality, ISIS fighters have been taking to the desert for weeks on end in both countries.

Although the article is couched in language that extols high tech, the need to drill miles-long horizontal wells is a sign of desperation. The low-hanging fruit is gone. -- RF
As Wind Power Sector Grows, Turbine Makers Feel the Squeeze
Vestas Wind Systems and Siemens Gamesa are giants of the wind-power industry, building mammoth turbines that rise high into the air and power more and more homes. But disappointing earnings reports from the two companies this week indicated that even they are struggling to adapt to a fast-changing sector.
In another sign of energy desperation we have a monster rig that can "tackle water depths of 12,000 feet and drill to a depth of 50,000 feet while extracting fossil fuels." And there is more on methane hydrate, another form of overhyped junk energy. -- RF
It's not clear to me how this is sustainable. Crop residue, termed "waste" to facilitate the argument, is actually a valuable component of healthy farmland. Its removal means that farmers must add still more fertilizer to compensate for the loss of highly beneficial organic material. How is that a win? Further, there is no mention of the energy balance. My guess is that the energy return is far lower than that needed to sustain industrial society. -- RF
CCTV to be made compulsory in all animal slaughterhouses, Government announces (UK)

## Environment/health ##
Ford, Ekso team up for 'bionic' auto workers
Robots have replaced many U.S. manufacturing workers, but new mechanical exoskeletons being tested by Ford Motor Co (F.N) may help factory workers to function like bionic people, reducing the physical damage of millions of repetitive tasks over many years.
Vehicle emissions per driver on the rise, study finds
The average emissions emitted per individual driver in the United States is getting worse, a report Friday from the University of Michigan found.

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
Did Al Qaeda Dupe Trump on Syrian Attack?
Special Report: Buried deep inside a new U.N. report is evidence that could exonerate the Syrian government in the April 4 sarin atrocity and make President Trump look like an Al Qaeda dupe.
Algorithmic Videos Are Making YouTube Unsuitable For Young Children, And Google's 'Revenue Architecture' Is To Blame
Seven Years Confined: How A Foia Litigation Is Shedding Light On The Case Of Julian Assange
Julian Assange is the only western publisher being arbitrarily detained in the heart of Europe without access to even an hour a day outdoors. Yet in the last seven years, no media has tried to access the full set of documents in his regard. Next Monday La Repubblica will appear before a London Tribunal to defend the right of the press to access these documents. Some of them have been already been deleted by the UK Authorities.

## Propaganda/censorship/fake news/alternative facts ##
Things Are Escalating Quickly
The three things I focused on today, war against Iran, the smearing of a celebrated NSA whistleblower, and attacks against RT are all related. The degenerates in power know that another war in the Middle East won't be popular. Dissent must be silenced ahead of a big war push, and narratives must get in line in order to successfully sell the public on another violent and disastrous adventure against our best interests.
Meet Clint Watts, a Dubious Russia Meddling 'Expert' Lobbying the U.S. Government to 'Quell Information Rebellions'
With a sketchy past in the counterterror swamp, Watts has suggested media censorship as a remedy to Russian interference.
According to Wilson, the Air Force has a deficit of about 2,000 pilots out of a total force of about 20,000 aviators. "That's one in 10 that we're short," she said, pointing out that last summer the pilot shortfall was only about 1,500 pilot.
To meet last year's goal of 69,000, the Army accepted more recruits who fared poorly on aptitude tests, increased the number of waivers granted for marijuana use and offered hundreds of millions of dollars in bonuses.
At the root of the overpopulation problem we can find, among other factors, (1) the maniacal endless-growth mindset and (2) the fossil-fuel energy bonanza that made it appear possible. -- RF

## Japan ##
Three Ways Radiation Has Changed The Monkeys Of Fukushima
Frightening. -- RF

But whatever happened to the traditional Chinese values I was raised on - thriftiness, frugality, and getting by with what you have? They have been shoved aside. At least by some well-to-do and increasingly wasteful middle-class urban dwellers. Some people have become so hooked on materialism that they have become credit card slaves, owing huge debts.

## UK ##
Rudd urges social media companies to block militant content
Britain's top internal security official is pressing social media companies to devise automatic systems to spot and block violent militant messaging before it is posted on their networks.
Hiding in Plain Sight: How UK companies are used to launder corrupt wealth
Hiding in Plain Sight: How UK companies are used to launder corrupt wealth" identified 52 global corruption and money laundering cases involving 766 UK companies. It found that the UK is home to a thriving company formation industry which gives money launderers access to UK firms. The UK's system to defend against this is failing to prevent the abuse of UK companies.
Long waits in A&E have increased by 557% in seven years, NHS data reveals
Demand for extra funding grows as figures reveal number of "trolley waits" longer than four hours now exceeds 45,000 per month

## US ##
One in five American households have 'zero or negative' wealth
Next Phase of Carmageddon: the Banks
Banks have started to tighten lending standards for prime and subprime borrowers, and it shows.
The Fetid Swamp of Tax Reform
The likelihood that either party will ever drain the fetid swamp of corruption that is our tax code is zero, because it's far too profitable for politicos to operate their auction for tax favors.

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