Sunday, March 04, 2018


News Links, March 5, 2018

Everybody likes free money. Unfortunately, it doesn't exist. -- RF

## War on cash/cashless society ##

## Airline death spiral ##
New flight pricing model 'personalises' airfares based on your wealth
A new method of flight ticket pricing is raising eyebrows. And it's actually a bit creepy.
Airlines aren't excited about the prospect of passengers being charged more in fees.
Siberian Airlines passenger punches, strangles and assaults passengers, calls baby a 'slut'

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Chinese state media makes war threat over US Taiwan bill
Missile-gate: U.S. Intel Misses Russia's Big Advances in Nuclear Parity
Russian President Vladimir Putin's announcement on Thursday of major technological advances in nuclear weapons delivery systems appears to have caught the U.S. intelligence community unawares.
Officials compare Russian journalists to segregated African Americans under Jim Crow
Iran calls on US, Europe to scrap nuclear arms, missiles
Iran will not negotiate over its ballistic missiles until the United States and Europe dismantle their nuclear weapons, a top Iranian military official said on Saturday.

## Migrants/refugees ##
Housing report says migration may need to be cut to preserve quality of life
One of Australia's most respected thinktanks has weighed into the population growth debate, saying the federal government needs to develop an explicit population policy that defines the "appropriate" level of migration, and it may need to reduce the migrant intake to improve wellbeing.
More refugees leave Nauru for America

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Police, protesters clash at Kiev tent camp; 100 detained

## Energy/resources ##
I am not singling out PEMEX or Mexico's oil production as what's going wrong in the global oil industry.  ALL public and state-run oil companies will go belly-up… it's just a matter of time.
The title really sounds exciting, but the article itself is much less so. -- RF
And what will US natural gas producers do when this cheap money they're drilling into the ground is no longer available as the Fed has set out to tighten financial conditions? Because the Fed is tightening precisely to turn off the cheap money spigot.
Hydropower supply dries up with climate change
Water power is the largest renewable energy source in the world, but some plants are running out of water due to severe droughts. Is climate change jeopardizing the future of hydropower plants?
Relying on renewables alone significantly inflates the cost of overhauling energy (MIT Technology Review)
The suggestion for a nuclear-power supplement is insane. -- RF

## Got food? ##
The Oligopolization of Food Supply Hits a Snag
Three companies to control 60% of world's seed and pesticide markets.
Drought Severely Stresses Argentina Corn, Soybeans
Drought inflicts mounting losses to crops in South Africa's Western Cape
A severe drought afflicting South Africa's Western Cape province is expected to cut agricultural output by 20 percent this year, decimating the wheat crop and reducing apple, grape and pear exports to Europe, officials said on Thursday.
Once I needed a new tire for my wheelbarrow. I took the old tire to a tire dealer and asked for a new one. "We'd have to order it. It would take a few days," said the 20-ish man. "I've got the time," I said. "Please order it." Then the young man made a suggestion: "Why not just junk the wheelbarrow and buy a new one?" -- RF

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
Pentagon's $1 Billion Cloud Deal May Signal New Era in Government Buying
In early February, a small Virginia-based company—REAN Cloud—that partners with Amazon Web Services announced a nearly $1 billion deal to provide cloud computing services for the Defense Department.
Australian Government Continues To Push Encryption Backdoors It Refuses To Call Encryption Backdoors
How 'Operation Merlin' Poisoned U.S. Intelligence on Iran
All Fire and Fury in Ukraine
The still decidedly volatile situation in Ukraine – resulting from another in a long line of U.S.-inspired regime changes that have destabilized the geopolitical landscape over the past few decades – is worth revisiting for a number of reasons.

## Propaganda/censorship/fake news/alternative facts ##
As Russian Bot Narrative Unravels, Even Liberals Say Enough Is Enough
America's News Media Foment Hate

## Japan ##
The hidden risks of China's war on debt
Those concerned about a "chilling effect" don't understand that much debt is needed to compensate for net energy decline, which has trapped the global economy. To wit, we have the choice of either overloading the economy with debt to keep it propped up (which will fail in the long run, anyway), or cutting back on debt and letting the economy wither. -- RF
No comment: uneasy silence as China's top political advisory body meets
Delegates arrive without their phones – and no one wants to speak to the media
China Is Single-Handedly Solving The Gas Glut

## US ##
Agency says it must spy on buses with Apple, Google workers
A transit agency in Silicon Valley set up six cameras to count how many buses carrying Apple and Google and other tech employees are using its roads after the companies refused to share that information.
Dangerous lunatic. -- RF

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