Thursday, March 23, 2017


News Links, March 24, 2017

Emirates to Let Travelers Keep Laptops Until U.S. Boardings
For some airline passengers, new warnings bring new hurdles
It's yet another impediment in the name of security for already weary travelers, especially those from or passing through the 10 mostly Middle Eastern and North African countries covered by new U.S. and British policies.
Rex Airlines flight makes emergency landing at Dubbo, passenger saw 'flames coming from engine' (Australia)
Greece's Aegean Airlines profit drops, cuts dividend
Government, Air India mull steps to check unruly passengers

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Airborne troops, Mi-28s & fleet: Massive military drills kick off in Crimea

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
India must be careful: Jobless growth can lead to social unrest
About that shale drilling miracle... -- RF
GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy and Bechtel Form Decommissioning Alliance
GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy (GEH) and Bechtel today announced the formation of an alliance to offer decommissioning and dismantlement services for nuclear power plants in Germany and Sweden.
The War on Water Is a Very Real Crisis
One of the hidden costs of industrial agriculture is its intensive water usage. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), about 80 percent of U.S. consumptive water (and more than 90 percent in many Western states) is used for agricultural purposes.

## Solutions ##
Heat Storage Hypocausts: Air Heating in the Middle Ages

## Environment/health ##
Scientists Have Some Wild Ideas for Solving Our Big Bee Problem
The world's bees are in big trouble — even more than you might have realized. Last year the U.S. lost a mind-boggling 44 percent of its honeybee colonies.
Coal ash: 'Why in the world would we be importing it?'
Shipping containers full of coal ash from China, Poland and India have come into the U.S. through the Port of Virginia as foreign companies find a market for the same industrial waste that America's utilities are struggling to dispose of.

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
Credibility of Cyber Firm that Claimed Russia Hacked the DNC Comes Under Serious Question
A Breach in the Anti-Putin Groupthink
The mainstream U.S. media has virtually banned any commentary that doesn't treat Russian President Putin as the devil, but a surprising breach in the groupthink has occurred in Foreign Affairs magazine.
Top NSA official says telephone surveillance should have been disclosed
The U.S. government should have publicized the existence of a program that vacuumed up in bulk Americans' telephone call data before its existence was leaked by former contractor Edward Snowden, the National Security Agency's deputy director said on Tuesday.
The Conspiracy Against President Trump
Listening today to the broadcast of testimony by FBI Director Comey and National Security Agency Director Admiral Michael Rogers before the House Intelligence Committee (an oxymoron) made it clear that the Democrats, Comey, and Rogers intend conflict with Russia.

## Propaganda/censorship/fake news/alternative facts ##
I have a better explanation: Governments and their media mouthpieces are behind it. -- RF

## Systemic breakdown/collapse/unsustainability ##
Our Hopelessly Dysfunctional Democracy
When the system is rigged, "democracy" is just another public-relations screen to mask the unsavory reality of Oligarchy.
Japan's gas, electricity prices to rise again in May
Japan's 14 major electricity and gas companies are expected to raise rates in May for the fourth straight month, as the utilities pass on rising costs of imported fuels to consumers.
MSDF boosts overseas deployment capabilities with second big helicopter carrier
The American Dream increasingly involves a lease, not a mortgage.
Left and Right, US Lawmakers Unite Against Escalating War in Syria
While the Pentagon provides plans for the Trump Administration for a major escalation of the US involvement in the war in Syria, new bipartisan legislation is being pushed in both the House and the Senate aiming to oppose the escalation and put legal obstacles in the way of it.
More than 1,500 U.S. citizens were wrongly held in local jails or detention centers at the request of immigration officials between 2007 and 2015, according to a 2016 National Public Radio analysis of detainer requests. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers are prohibited from detaining U.S. citizens.
State Department to approve Keystone pipeline permit on Friday: sources
We're All Minorities Now
The one percent now effectively owns Washington: the making of our laws, the writing of Executive Orders, the running of Federal agencies with the power to put crooks among the one percent in prison – or not, and they are now the overseers of gutting Federal programs that benefit the 99 percent.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017


News Links, March 22, 2017

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards/global cooling/deflationary collapse ##
Central Bank Shell Game: What Sweden's Negative Interest Rates Do to Consumers

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Taiwan says China advanced ballistic missiles aimed at the island
Trump's Team Embraces Iranian Myths
Key players in the Trump administration have stuck to the neoconservative insistence on "regime change" in Iran rather than take a fresh look at the reality.
Europe, N.Africa ministers seek to curb Libya migrant flows
EU Official: We'll Force Members To Accept Refugees

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Eight 'suspect' packages found at Athens postal centre
Greek police said they found eight "suspect" packages on Monday addressed to global economic institutions, after a domestic militant group sent mail bombs to the IMF and German finance ministry last week.
Vandalism reported along Dakota Access Pipeline
Conservative students say they have been 'violently threatened' at Lutheran college

## Energy/resources ##
Consumers Would Be $3.9 Billion 'Losers' From Nuclear Subsidies
Expanding state aid to money-losing nuclear reactors across the Eastern U.S. may leave consumers on the hook for as much as $3.9 billion a year in higher power bills.
Adjusting the economy to the new energy realities of the second half of the age of oil
Communities are struggling to deal with the volume of waste, and even high-end hotels now pay staff to dig holes in the beaches where they tip in the mounds of plastic.

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
A simple command allows the CIA to commandeer 318 models of Cisco switches
Cisco Systems said that more than 300 models of switches it sells contain a critical vulnerability that allows the CIA to use a simple command to remotely execute malicious code that takes full control of the devices. There currently is no fix.
IoT: Don't Hide Your Gold Coins Where Your Thermostat Can See

## Propaganda/censorship/fake news/alternative facts ##
Don't You Hate Spammy, Sensationalist Click-Bait Like this?
NYT's 'Tinfoil Hat' Conspiracy Theory
There is a "tinfoil-hat" quality to The New York Times' pushing its "Donald Trump Is Russia's Manchurian Candidate" conspiracy theory as the newspaper sinks deeper into a New McCarthyism.
The Missing Logic of Russia-gate
Russia-bashing and innuendos about disloyal Americans were all the rage at Monday's House Intelligence Committee hearing on alleged Russian "hacking" of the presidential election, but logic is often missing.
Tepco to link up with Intel to manage power grids overseas
Tokyo utility looks abroad to cover staggering Fukushima cleanup costs
How China's overseas property dream turned into a nightmare
Capital controls mean people who signed up for flats in Malaysia cannot send money from mainland

## US ##
Well, thanks for these observations, but here again the implication is that we have the two arms of the War Party — Democrats and Republicans — and nothing else. The US is still stuck with its China-style one-party system. Why can't anyone see past that? -- RF
"People are target shooting at our rock carvings," said Yellowman, a Navajo elder. "They are cutting out our pictographs, our stories, and taking them away and selling them."
One wonders why poor US residents had to depend on Venezuela in the first place. What support has there been from US oil companies? -- RF

Sunday, March 19, 2017


News Links, March 20, 2017

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards/global cooling/deflationary collapse ##
In my opinion, it's long past time we be brutally honest about the banks. Their influence and reach has metastasized to the point where we now live under a captive system. From our retirement accounts, to our homes, to the laws we live under -- the banks control it all. And they run the system for their benefit, not ours.

## Airline death spiral ##
While Trump talks tough, US quietly cutting nuclear force
The Air Force is quietly shrinking its deployed force of land-based nuclear missiles as part of a holdover Obama administration plan to comply with an arms control treaty with Russia.

## Migrants/refugees ##

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Protesters march in Paris against police violence

## Energy/resources ##
Peak foiled
This Grist writer claims that — unfortunately for the climate — peak oil is no problem. Apparently the writer is not aware that the oil industry is in deep trouble because what's flowing is not only oil, but also lots of red ink. It doesn't matter how much energy a given energy system produces. What matters is the net energy left over for self-replication and for powering socioeconomic systems after all energy costs have been paid. Infrastructure is crumbling, economies are in the toilet, and governments are racking up titanic piles of debt because the net energy delivered by the fossil-fuel energy system has already fallen below the level needed to sustain industrial society. -- RF
Here's how California ended up with too much solar power
Increasing amounts of wind and solar energy are being wasted or "curtailed," because no one can use it.
It sounds almost too good to be true, and in a sense, it is. Depths of more than 3,000-4,000 meters, which is where deepwater offshore oil and gas projects are located, present engineers with a unique challenge. The challenge comes in the form of finding materials and components strong enough to withstand the water pressure.

## Solutions ##
How Rich Is Your Knowledge Capital?

## Environment/health ##
Skyscrapers may trigger motion-sickness, sleepiness and depression  because they sway slightly in the wind, experts believe.
These sick Vietnam vets blame exposure to Agent Orange, but VA won't pay

## Intelligence/security/internet/cyberwar ##
The Trump/Obama 'Leak War'
"Leaks" can be whistleblowers exposing government wrongdoing, but many actually are government agencies manipulating the public or punishing enemies, as is playing out in today's Trump/Obama "leak war."
Intel Chair: "No Collusion Between Trump and Russia... Leak Is The Only Crime"

## Propaganda/censorship/fake news/alternative facts ##
Contrasting Tales of Two Besieged Cities
The U.S.-backed offensive to retake Iraq's Mosul from the Islamic State is inflicting hardships on civilians, but the Western media treats this humanitarian crisis differently than the recent one in Aleppo.
School children 'should be taught to recognise fake news' (UK)
CNN: President Trump "Has Spent His Whole Life Bullsh*tting"
With the "Russians are to blame" narrative fading - due to lack of any evidence - it appears CNN has turned back to ad hominem attack 'reporting' on the Trump administration.
Half a million dollars for what is essentially a driver's license. -- RF
A "deluxe" edition for $49,000! -- RF
Like Hillary Clinton's "reset" of US-Russia relations? -- RF

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