Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Breaking News Tues. March 1, 2011

James Howard Kunstler
"Wake Me, Shake Me"
A quickening of events pulses through lands where for so long time stood still, and the oil - what's left of it - lies locked for the moment beneath hot sands - woe upon all ye soccer moms! - while Colonel Gadhafi ponders the Mussolini option - that is, to be hoisted up a lamp-post on a high-C piano wire until his head bursts like a rotten pomegranate. Then the good folk of Libya can fight amongst themselves for the swag, loot, and ka-chingling oil revenues he left behind. Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton scowls on the sidelines knowing how bad it would look if US marines actually hit the shores of Tripoli (and perhaps how fruitless it might turn out to be). And Italian grandmothers across the Mediterranean wonder why there's no gas to fire up the orecchiette con cime di rapa.

Just want to again thank our blogger friend rj, at Global Glass Onion for all his help and links!  He's drying out from all the rain storms today.

Protests and Rebellions
dailyKos: WI-Gov: Buyer's remorse for Scott Walker
aflcioBlog: Walker Welding Capitol Windows NOW to Keep Workers from Passing Food to Those Inside
BBC: Aid crisis on Libya's west border
The situation on Libya's border with Tunisia has reached crisis point, as tens of thousands of foreigners flee unrest in the country, the UN says.
TheTrench: US Blackout Over Yemen
WashingtonPost: Iran uses tear gas to disperse protesters chanting "death to the dictator"
WashingtonPost: UN: Libyan refugee 'crisis' tops 140,000

Financial News
Guardian: The awful truth: education won't stop the west getting poorer
Skilled jobs will go to the lowest bidder worldwide. A decline in middle class pay and job satisfaction is only just beginning
BlackListedNews: U.S. in for 'twenty years of rising interest rates': Loomis Sayles
Project-Syndicate: Need Versus Greed 
GlobalEconomicAnalysis: US Dollar About to Lose Reserve Currency Status - Fact or Fantasy?
A number of sites are commenting on a Bloomberg video in which El-Erian, PIMCO Co-CEO says "Dollar could lose its reserve currency status".
WSJ: China Owns a Lot More U.S. Debt Than Previously Thought
DemocracyNow: Labor Organizers Consider General Strike in Wisconsin As Gov. Scott Walker Refuses to Negotiate Over Anti-Union Bill
BusinessInsider: Why The Claim That Government Can't Create Wealth Is Provably Wrong
FinancialArmageddon: American FAIL
Here are six charts from USA Inc., a comprehensive (and absorbing) new report by former Morgan Stanley analyst and current Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers partner Mary Meeker that looks at the U.S. federal government (and its financials) as if it were a business, which seem to say one thing:

ibtimes: China's U.S. Treasuries holdings revised to $1.16 trillion
The U.S. government owes nearly a third more money to China than previously thought, the Treasury Department said on Monday as it revised Beijing's December holdings of U.S. Treasury debt sharply higher to $1.160 trillion.
LAT:Cash-only home sales rise in California
All-cash buyers grabbed a record 30.9% share of California house and condo sales in January. In Southern California's most expensive communities, cash deals now account for as much as two-thirds of home sales.
ZeroHedge: CNBC On The Case For $130 Silver
AngryBear: Wiggle Room
In a way, Americans do understand this. Otherwise, why would they have disdain for the model of the immigrant many Americans scorn? – living ten to a room, on rice and beans, sleeping in shifts to make use of scarce bedspace, and all for wages that a babysitter would refuse? Americans scorn these living arrangements, but that’s where they’re heading. 
macroadvisers: The GDP Effects of a (Brief) Government Shutdown (-0.2 in Q1)
Guardian: Changing the terms of economic debate
CenterForAmericanProgress: Dear President Obama and Members of Congress:
As economists, we believe it is short-sighted to make budget cuts that take away necessary investments in our human capital, our infrastructure, and the next generation of scientific and technological advances. These cuts threaten our economy’s long term economic competitiveness and the strength of our current economic recovery.
BusinessInsider: Silver!
WashingtonPost: GOP spending plan would cost 700,000 jobs, new report says
DailyCrux: Why the record amount of U.S. corporate cash isn't helping investors...

Gregor.us: Data Diving and the Federal Reserve: The Politics of Food and Energy Inflation
Bloomberg: House to Vote on Budget Measure Aimed At Preventing Shutdown
Bloomberg: Accidental Death Becomes Suicide When Insurers Don't Pay
Jane Pierce spent nine years struggling alongside her husband, Todd, as he fought cancer in his sinus cavity. The treatments were working. Then, in July 2009, Todd died in a fiery car crash. He was 46. That was the beginning of a whole new battle for Jane Pierce, this time with Todd’s life insurance company, MetLife Inc.
 NPR: Construction Drops For Second Month In a Row
ZeroHedge: Gold is Already Predicting the Next Fed Chairman
BusinessInsider: The 10 Fastest Growing Economies Of The Next 40 Years
WSJ: Spain Meets Deficit Target
LifeInc: The IRS may have a 2007 refund for you 
HuffingtonPost: The GOP Plan to Cut Social Security ... Starting Right Now
Call it a "general strike" ... from above. Republicans in Congress are trying to paralyze the government with their new budget bill, using a "disrupt and defeat" strategy to prevent it from delivering services promised to the the nation's citizens and required under current law. It's fiscal sabotage, plain and simple. Will people fight back?
 Bloomberg: U.S. House to Vote on Stopgap Budget Bill to Prevent Government Shutdown

Peak Oil and Energy News
TheGlobeandMail: Oil's next danger zones
BloombergBusinessWeek: Libyan chaos stirs global panic over oil supplies
OilPrice: Oil Supply Disruptions in The Middle East Now Becoming Evident 
Crash-Watcher: Survey of Oil Exports from the Middle East
CNNMoney: Gas prices up for 7 days in a row
WSJ: A Window Into the Nuclear Future
TerraPower—with the backing of Bill Gates—has a radical vision for the reactors of tomorrow
BusinessInsider: If You Think This Oil Spike Is Temporary, Check Out This Chart

Environmental News
Physorg: Greenland's glaciers double in speed
(with video) The contribution of Greenland to global sea level change and the mapping of previously unknown basins and mountains beneath the Antarctic Ice Sheet are highlighted in a new film released by Cambridge University this morning. The work of glaciologist Professor Julian Dowdeswell, Director of Cambridge University’s Scott Polar Research Institute, is the focus of This Icy World, the latest film in the University’s Cambridge Ideas series. A frequent visitor to both the Arctic and Antarctic, Dowdeswell’s research has found that the glaciers around Greenland are the fastest flowing in the world.
NYTimes: Regulation Lax as Gas Wells’ Tainted Water Hits Rivers
But the relatively new drilling method — known as high-volume horizontal hydraulic fracturing, or hydrofracking — carries significant environmental risks. It involves injecting huge amounts of water, mixed with sand and chemicals, at high pressures to break up rock formations and release the gas.

With hydrofracking, a well can produce over a million gallons of wastewater that is often laced with highly corrosive salts, carcinogens like benzene and radioactive elements like radium, all of which can occur naturally thousands of feet underground. Other carcinogenic materials can be added to the wastewater by the chemicals used in the hydrofracking itself.
Climatechangepsychology: Coal's hidden costs top $345 billion in U.S.
United States' reliance on coal to generate almost half of its electricity, costs the economy about $345 billion a year in hidden expenses not borne by miners or utilities, including health problems in mining communities and pollution around power plants
(you have to scroll down the page a good bit to find the article)
ClimateProgress: Energy and global warming news for March 1, 2011: China issues warning on climate and growth
Prime Minister Wen Jiabao: “We must not any longer sacrifice the environment for the sake of rapid growth and reckless roll-outs, as that would result in unsustainable growth featuring industrial overcapacity and intensive resource consumption,”

Food and Water
OilPrice: The Effects of Rising Global Food Prices 
SaltLakeTribune: Senate votes to hike food tax
Forbes: High Commodity Food-Price Decade Challenges All Global Managers
AGWeek: Too much ethanol could lead to food riots
CRYSTAL CITY, Va. — Former President Clinton seemed to join the food-vs.-fuel debate Feb. 24, saying that a balance should be struck in the use of corn for food and ethanol to avoid food riots, a statement that won quick retorts from the Renewable Fuels Association and the National Corn Growers Association.
ABCNews: Wheat disease a threat to global food security
Scientists believe stem rust, which looks like red dust on wheat, could threaten global food security.

War Conflict And Terrorism
AlterNet: DNC Pressures Obama to End Afghanistan War Faster
On Saturday, the DNC passed a resolution pushing President Obama for a quicker withdrawal from Afghanistan. The resolution cited a poll that said 72% of Americans support action that would bring the troops home faster and highlighted the war's mounting costs. Here's the full text of the resolution:
BIPolitix: American Held Hostage: Raymond Davis

Police State, Big Brother and Surveillance
BlackListedNews: Leaked documents show Army's bold plan to acquire 10,000 square miles of Colorado
AmericanDream: A National ID Card For American Citizens? Get Ready – The Real ID Act Goes Into Effect On May 11

Science and Technology News
BBC: Are humans still evolving by Darwin's natural selection?
Has technology brought human evolution to a juddering halt?
PCMag: The Creepiest Facebook Apps

Medical and Health
WiredDangerRoom: Darpa’s 5 Radical Plans for Military Medicine
Wired: How Doctors Can Monitor Fitness From Afar

Other News
CNNVideo: Finally, there’s a scholarship for white men only. Its creator says it’s about helping an overlooked group. Video:
ClimateProgress: Groucho Marxist Bill McKibben takes on Glenn Beck
BusinessPundit: What’s Really Inside Decaf :D
BusinessInsider: MILLION DOLLAR IDEA: Seats That Press Advertisements On Bare Thighs

News From the Forums
TinfoilPalace: halfpasthuman Feb 28th 2011
TinfoilPalace: MUST SEE: The Untold UFO War in Antarctica (Video)
TheOilAge: Boycott the 2012 Olympics
TheOilAge: Bleeding humanity dry
Hubberts-Arms: Letter From "Anonymous" To Us All
Hubberts-Arms: Imperialist hands off Libya!
SilentCountry: Agribiz is bloody indeed 
Video on SK outbreak of foot&mouth disease

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