Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Breaking News Tues. May 3, 2011

Hope everyone is doing well so far this week. We've got quite the spectacle going on right now and looks like it will be about as pervasive as the 'royal wedding' was! LOL
Had trouble this morning with the computer and lost a bunch of links so I've been hauling booty trying to catch up. I really want to thank rj at Global Glass Onion for his help.

NewsFlash. rj just sent me this and I was so floored by it I wanted to go ahead and post it. This is just unreal!
A $10.1 million aluminum skyscraper sold in under a minute on yesterday — for less than $2,000.

First Commonwealth Bank — which held the mortgage — was the lone bidder on the 31-story Regional Enterprise Tower and two adjoining Downtown properties, including the Allegheny-HYP Club, a historic set of buildings at William Penn Place and Strawberry Way.
The price: $1,706.46, or the amount it cost the Allegheny County Sheriff's Department to post and advertise the property sale.

James Kunstler
   Notice, by the way, the interesting and important news put out by the government on Friday (the time most favorable for "burying" news due to the TGIF syndrome), that the US Department of Energy's Energy Information Agency (EIA) has de-funded the office that collects data on oil production outside the USA - that is, in places like Saudi Arabia, Nigeria, Venezuela, Mexico, et. al., in short, the places where the USA gets more than two-thirds of the oil we use every single day. And the reason for this would be? (choose one): 1.) We don't want to know; 2.) We don't give a shit; 3.) There's four Saudi Arabia's worth of oil under Zap, North Dakota; 4.) We've "innovated" a new technique for making oil out of lawn clippings.

Bin Laden 
Not usually a big fan of Jones, but, this really is interesting.

ScientificAmerican: Security Experts: Prepare for Possible Bin Laden Reprisal
What is the increased threat in the wake of the elimination of the leader of al Qaeda and how can it be defended against?
TheAtlantic: Bin Laden's 'War of a Thousand Cuts' Will Live On
Time: Afghanistan: Where Even the Taliban Don't Care About Bin Laden 
BusinessInsider: OBAMA OFFICIAL: Bin Laden Intelligence NOT The Result Of WaterboardingDeputy National Security Advisor John Brennan appeared on Morning Joe this morning and countered the claim that has been widely spread since Osama Bin Laden's death on Sunday: namely that waterboarding resulted in intelligence that lead U.S. forces straight to Osama's door.
WashingtonPost: Osama bin Laden didn’t win, but he was ‘enormously successful’
WSJ: Secondary Sources: Bin Laden and Economy, Unemployment Crisis, Economic Facts 
WashingtonPost: Obama’s birth issue takes a hit, too, in Pakistan mission to kill bin Laden 
Spiegel: Justice, American Style Was Bin Laden's Killing Legal?Is this what justice looks like? Al-Qaida boss Osama bin Laden was killed on Sunday in a secret military operation in Pakistan. Americans are celebrating, but there are serious doubts about whether the targeted killing was legal under international law and the laws of war.
UPI: Experts warn global terror is not over
FDL: On Second Day After Bin Laden’s Death, No Massive Demonstrations or Reprisals in Pakistan 
ibtimes: Rubio to ‘deathers’: If Osama bin Laden isn’t dead, let him produce a video“What people need to know is that Osama bin Laden is dead. There is no doubt about it…If he’s not dead, let him produce another video,” said Florida Senator Marco Rubio on The Hugh Hewitt Show.
(I love how this is framed. LOL it completely overlooks the possibility that he didn't produce most of the other videos in the first place!)

ConservativeByte: CIA Panetta Breaks Silence: Admits ‘Impressive Amount’ Of Intelligence From Bin Laden CompoundIn his first interview since commanding the mission to kill Osama bin Laden, CIA Chief Leon Panetta tells TIME that U.S. officials feared that Pakistan could have undermined the operation by leaking word to its targets.

BLN: Japan: Kan, “Will Study the Possibility of Setting Up an Alternative Capital to Take Over Tokyo’s Role in an Emergency” 

MailandGuardian: Japan plans new tsunami wall at nuclear plant 
The operator of Japan's Fukushima nuclear plant will build a wall to defend it against future tsunamis, reports said on Monday, as public confidence slipped in the government's handling of the disaster.
PBS: Pakistani President Denies Sheltering Bin Laden  

Global Conflict

SOTT: Female Psychopath? Israeli Border Policewoman as Stone-Cold Killer

TruthOut: Time to Sever the Saudi Ties That Bind - Apparently, King Abdullah of the House of Saud (the man with the unseemly title "Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques") got his feelings hurt that America objected when the totalitarian theocracy whose despot he is sent troops into a neighboring country to massacre peacefully protesting civilians.
TheNation: With Osama Found, a Congresswoman Asks: Where's the Afghanistan Exit Strategy? 

Financial News
BusinessInsider: Ben Davies On Silver: "The Big Parabola Is Yet To Come"
CharlesHughSmith: When Does "Managed Perception" Become Reality?The Federal Reserve is quite open about the ultimate purpose of all its machinations: to "manage perceptions" so the citizenry believe the "recovery" is real. The Fed reckons that belief will cause people to start a new debt-consumption orgy that will fuel a self-reinforcing cycle of expansion.
MyBudget360: The covert bailing out of the commercial real estate industry by the Federal Reserve. How the Fed bails out ritzy hotels and empty shopping malls on the back of taxpayer dollars.
Cryptogon: Resisting the Rise of the Machines as Marketing Meme to Sell Cars?
YahooFinance: California's budget nightmare: Painful cuts or higher taxes 
WSJ: Two Beijing Economists Urge Yuan Free Float
BEIJING—Two prominent Beijing economists are urging the government to let the yuan float freely as a way to limit the country's immense foreign-exchange reserves, fight inflation and spur the remaking of the Chinese growth model.

"We should quickly stop buying foreign exchange in the market," said Huang Yiping, an economist at Peking University's China Macroeconomic Research Center, told The Wall Street Journal.

CNBC: US Debt Rating Should Be 'C': Independent Agency
There have been increasing concerns about the fate of United States' prized triple-A sovereign debt rating. While Standard and Poor's recently downgraded its U.S. debt outlook to negative from stable, implying that a ratings cut could happen in two years, one independent ratings agency has given the U.S. sovereign rating a "C".
ZeroHedge: From $6 To $1 In Milliseconds: AMBO Is First Flash Crash Du Jour
CNNMoney: Goodbye, $5 ATM fees
After unsuccessful testing earlier this year, Chase has discontinued its $4 and $5 ATM fees.
LifeInc: Bank overdraft fees: Your 5,000% APR loan
Short on cash? I know a quick and easy way you can get a short-term loan.
The catch: The interest rate is 5,000 percent.

Peak oil and Energy News
EnergyBulletin: The context of Hubbert’s Peak in world oil forecast

Recently when I was reading some of the papers M. King Hubbert wrote, one thing struck me was the context in which he made his forecast regarding how world oil supply would peak and decline. He made this forecast in the context of having plenty of other fuel supply from other sources already developed, to offset this decline.
RitHoltz: Chart of the Day: National Gasoline Prices 
After initially selling off on the bin Laden news, Oil prices have rallied back to new highs. Since we are about to enter the prime driving/gasoline consumption period fo the year, let’s have a closer looks at Gasoline Prices across the US:

Environmental News
ExtinctionProtocol: Tornado tears through New Zealand’s largest city

ClimateProgress: Tornado forecasting saved countless lives this week. 
Too bad Congress, including Alabama’s entire GOP delegation, voted against maintaining forecast quality
ClimateProgress: Romney on oil subsidies: “I haven’t looked at it,” but Big Oil’s taxes should be cut
ABCNews: New Report Confirms Arctic Melt AcceleratingA new assessment of climate change in the Arctic shows the ice in the region is melting faster than previously thought and sharply raises projections of global sea level rise this century.
NYT: Shell Tries to Calm Fears on Drilling in Alaska Shell Oil will present an ambitious proposal to the federal government this week, seeking permission to drill up to 10 exploratory oil wells beneath Alaska’s frigid Arctic waters.  The forbidding ice-clogged region is believed to hold vast reserves of oil, potentially enough to fuel 25 million cars for 35 years. And with production in Alaska’s North Slope in steep decline, the oil industry is eager to tap new offshore wells.
WJTV: Radioactive Substance Found In The Mississippi River

America in Decline
MotherJones: The GOP's Stealth Plan to Redefine Rape
Republicans pulled controversial "forcible rape" language from a pending bill, but they're trying a backdoor maneuver to ensure the legislation achieves the same effect.
AlterNet: Wal-Mart -- It's Alive! How the Company Is Terrorizing the Country With its Corporate 'Personhood' 
 "What is Wal-Mart -- in a strictly taxonomic sense, that is? Based on size alone, it would be easy to confuse it with a nation: In 2002, its annual revenue was equal to or exceeded that of all but 22 recognized nation-states. Or, if all its employees -- 1.4 million in the U.S. alone -- were to gather in one place, you might think you were looking at a major city. But there is also the possibility that Wal-Mart and other planet-spanning, centi-billion-dollar enterprises are not mere aggregations of people at all. They may be independent life-forms -- a species of super-organisms.

Food and Water
Thanks to rj for this and other links!

BusinessWeek: Wet spring creates anxiety in Midwest farm country - Experts say it's too early for farmers and backyard gardeners to worry about the wet spring that's drenched the Midwest, but anxiety seems to be growing among those frustrated by the muddy fields. "Yeah, there's a few people starting to sweat," said Kevin Baird, who grows corn, soybeans, tomatoes and other crops in southern Indiana and usually has been out in the fields for weeks by now. "Last year at this time they were almost wrapping up here."

Medical and Health

Science and Technology

ArchaeologyNewsNewtork: Princess sheds new light on early Celts
German experts are carefully taking apart a complete Celtic grave in the hope of finding out more about the Celts' way of life, 2,600 years ago, in their Danube heartland.
NewScientist: Sony admits 12,700 credit card details stolen
ArchaeologyNewsNetwork: Archaeologists discover stairway with Maya Hieroglyphs

Other News

Good: That Martin Luther King Quote Is Fake; Use These Instead

The Forums

TinfoilPalace: Bin Laden Dead, White House Reports 
TinfoilPalace: New Half Past Human out
TheOilAge: LATOC Archive
TheOilAge: IEA Declares Peak Oil
Hubberts-Arms: Six Planets Now Aligned in the Dawn Sky
Hubberts-Arms: The Internet: One big power suck
SilentCountry: Radioactive Substance Found In The Mississippi River
SilentCountry: How Goldman Sachs Created the Food Crisis


  1. that alcoa tower is a pittsburgh landmark...i wonder what it'd be worth just as scrap aluminum...

    did you notice they're also selling a 225 room holiday inn, also dirt cheap?

    we could throw one hellava party!

  2. I know really! I just couldn't hardly believe they would do that. sounds like a scam or something or some inside favor doesn't it?

  3. maybe they just want to have someone paying taxes...

    here's the story on it:


  4. what a neat building? I like that the windows rotate and can be washed from the inside. What a good idea. Do you think someone bought it to tear it down and put up something else?

  5. looks like it was a stategic default by a corporate "person", you know, the kind of thing you or i'd get dinged for:
    "Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission, which filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy on March 29, defaulted on a $10.4 million loan on the property"

    "First Commonwealth will continue to keep the Regional Enterprise Tower in downtown Pittsburgh open and operational," Susie Barbour, spokeswoman for First Commonwealth, wrote in an emailed statement. "Naturally, we hope the tenants will continue to be committed to staying in the building. And we will continue to look for a suitable buyer."

    SPC Board Chairman Charlie Camp said the sale frees the agency, the regional highway planning agency for a 10-county region around Pittsburgh, from owning and managing a Downtown skyscraper. He said SPC hopes to continue to lease space from the new owner."

    someone is out $10.4 million, it dont say who...

  6. thanks for all that rj. that story just blew me away! I guess that's how rich people stay rich. they never have to suffer any losses. Except for whoever lost the 10.4 million.

  7. probably the taxpayers...