Tuesday, July 09, 2019


News Links, July 10, 2019

Weaponizing the Dollar
The Trump administration's incessant sanctions wars are curbing the dollar's global hegemony and speeding the demise of U.S. empire.
Deloitte, an accounting firm, estimates that the outstanding value of loans against art in America reached $17bn-20bn in 2017, up 13% from the previous year. Industry insiders say such lending has continued to grow at double-digit rates since then.

## Airline death spiral ##
Americans Shocked to Find Their Rights Literally Vanish at U.S. Airports
The number of people detained, their phones and laptops searched without warrants, is exploding.

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Nelson Mandela's Grandson: We have a Moral Duty to Boycott Israel over its Apartheid against Palestinians
South African MP and the grandson of Nelson Mandela, Nkosi Zwelivelile Mandela, addressed a sold out crowd at the Palestine Expo in London yesterday, saying "We have a moral duty to support the BDS and to support the Palestinian struggle".
Good luck with that. -- RF
So far, Iran's maximum-pressure strategy seems to be enjoying a modicum of success. -- RF
Turkey proceeds with deal for Russian missile system despite US and NATO warnings
Pompeo Launches Commission to Study Which Human Rights Deserve Respect
Pompeo said that the proliferation of human rights claims have required "one of the most profound reexaminations of the unalienable rights in the world." This being the US, and human rights, a lot of critics are expecting it to go poorly.

• War on Iran
UAE Withdraws from Yemen
The pullback suggests that the UAE is preparing for the possibility of a US military confrontation with Iran in which the UAE and Saudi Arabia could emerge as prime battlegrounds.

• War on Venezuela
United Nations slams US for detention facilities: 'This should never happen anywhere'

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##

## Energy/resources ##
Nuclear Power, Once Seen as Impervious to Climate Change, Threatened by Heat Waves
The nuclear power sector is often portrayed as resistant to unpredictable weather associated with climate change. Heat waves, however, are punching holes in that narrative.
Nothing in the article on the sizable power consumption of all this cold storage. -- RF

## Environment/health ##
Drug prices in 2019 are surging, with hikes at 5 times inflation (US)
Toxic algae bloom forces closure of 21 Mississippi beaches

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
Facebook Has Ignored Its Secret Hate Groups for Years
5 best ways to keep your Android apps from spying on you
Over 1,000 Android apps grab your data even if you tell them no.

## Propaganda/censorship/fake news/alternative facts ##
Netanyahu uses DNA claim to deny Palestinian right to homeland
UK bars RT, Sputnik from conference for 'disinformation'
Britain said Monday it had barred Russia's RT and Sputnik news organisations from a global conference on media freedom in London because of their "active role in spreading disinformation".
Meanwhile, the UK mainstream media shamelessly peddle the fabricated Skripal fairy tale. Chutzpah knows no bounds. -- RF

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
As Systems Collapse, People Rise: Seven Faces of an Emerging Global Movement
Very interesting, but I think we should prepare ourselves for a rising tide of global authoritarianism as a corollary of net energy decline. -- RF

## Japan ##
Nuclear safety costs in Japan surge to staggering heights
Japan's nuclear plant operators face ballooning costs for meeting safety requirements imposed six years ago, potentially throwing a wrench into the government's policy of promoting the atom as a low-cost, reliable energy source.
China struggling with slow progress on high-speed rail network expansion due to local financing problems
Beijing's policy moves to reduce debt and cut taxes are hampering local governments' ability to fund new projects

• War on Huawei
Secret plan to use charities to help deport rough sleepers
Home Office accused of turning 'outreach workers into border guards' as emails reveal new scheme targeting non-UK homeless
We can therefore be certain this was not a wikileaks style disclosure in the interests of freedom of information about public servants and their doings, but the agenda was much more specific.
Congratulations Debt Slaves! You Owe the Banks a New Record Amount of Money
Consumer credit hit another all-time high today of nearly $4.1 trillion.
Kamala Harris's Distinguished Career of Serving Injustice
The presidential hopeful's record in California undermines her claim to progressive credentials.

And finally...

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