Well, it's finally Friday, I hope everyone has a great day and great holiday weekend. Watch the video posted below if you have time though. It's a special kind of bravery and courage.
As always I want to thank RJ at Global Glass Onion and the Ozarker at Conflicted Doomer, for their friendship and help everyday finding links. Be sure to check out their blogs today and support their valuable work!
Bloomberg: Deflation Grip Returns in Japan as Production Declines - Japan’s rebound from the March earthquake and tsunami sputtered in November as production and retail sales tumbled, deepening the nation’s return to the deflation that first took hold a decade ago.
LegitGov: Gov't request for nuclear storage facility site sends shockwaves through Fukushima
TechReview: Blog - Best of 2011: Atmosphere Above Japan Heated Rapidly Before M9 Earthquake - In May, scientists revealed that infrared emissions above the epicenter increased dramatically in the days before the devastating earthquake in Japan
RawStory: U.S. warships cross Hormuz despite Iran threats
LAT: Ron Paul: Sanctions against Iran are 'acts of war'
TruthOut: Crackpot Anti-Islam Activists, "Serial Fabricators" and the Tale of Iran and 9/11Gareth Porter, - "Behind a mysterious December 22 Associated Press story about 'finding of fact' by a District judge in Manhattan Friday that Iran assisted al Qaeda in the planning of the 9/11 attacks is a tapestry of recycled fabrications and distortions of fact from a bizarre cast of characters.... The only real effect of the case is to promote right-wing political myths about Iran."
LegitGov: Iran Navy pinpoints US carrier in drills - 29 Dec 2011 A senior Iranian commander says Iran's naval forces have identified a US aircraft carrier in an area of the navy's ongoing military exercises.
WashingtonPost: Syrian opposition criticizes head of Arab League observers, citing ties to Sudanese military
BBC: Pakistan murder testimony doctor Baqir Shah shot dead
VOA: US Announces Saudi Arms Deal Amid Gulf Tensions
CNN: Airstrike on Turkey-Iraq border kills 35 people, official says
LAT: Dozens reported killed as Arab League observers tour Syria
WashingtonPost: Egypt forces storm offices of pro-democracy, human rights groups accused of fomenting protests
NYT: Egypt Raids Offices of Nonprofits, 3 Backed by US
WashingtonPost: US touts Saudi Arabia fighter jet deal as a foreign policy, security and economic boon
USAToday: Foreign business in Iraq quadruples in 2011
NYT: New North Korean leader; same old hostilities
BusinessInsider: Another Video Shows The Horrifying Extent Of Kazakhstan Oil Violence
BBC: Syria troops 'clash with Damascus activists' - Syrian forces and activists have clashed during after-prayer protests in Damascus, as Arab observers continue their mission in the country.
BBC: Syria troops 'clash with Damascus activists'
TheAtlantic: Unaccountable Killing Machines: The True Cost of U.S. Drones - Officials often portray the global expansion of deadly drone strikes as an unequivocal success. But are we really accounting for all the consequences?
MSNBC: Boot Hezbollah from Twitter or we sue, group says
CNN: Protesters in Syria 'Crawl to Freedom Square'
Telegraph: Syria: Arab League observers reportedly filmed caught in crossfire in Homs - Amateur video uploaded to the internet is purported to show an Arab League observer waving a white flag as gunfire rings out during an inspection in Homs.
Atlantic: Why Are We Selling Saudi Arabia $60 Billion in Arms?
CBSNews: Hundreds of thousands in Syria protest gov't
WashingtonPost: 5 Occupy protesters arrested outside of Ron Paul campaign headquarters in suburban Des Moines
WBIR: State Year in Review: Economy, protests occupied Capitol - 2011 will go down as the year fed-up Tennesseans fought back.
BlacklistedNews: The Puzzling Case of Stratfor and Anonymous
Reuters: Stuxnet weapon has at least 4 cousins: researchers - The Stuxnet virus that last year damaged Iran's nuclear program was likely one of at least five cyber weapons developed on a single platform whose roots trace back to 2007, according to new research from Russian computer security firm Kaspersky Lab.
WBIR: Man indicted for 'flipping' 235 homes
WashingtonTimes: MF Global chief missing $1.2B is financial adviser to EPA
DailyBeast: Greek Hospitals Have Turned Away Expectant Mothers Who Can't Pay
MSNBC: What Worries Us Most: Economic Collapse - Natural disasters, terrorist attacks, global disease – if you’re so inclined, there’s no shortage of major issues to fret about these days. Still, a new poll finds that the catastrophic event Americans are most likely to be worried about is economic collapse.
Zerohedge: Guest Post: A Run On The Global Banking System - How Close Are We? - Nine weeks after its bankruptcy, the general public still hasn’t quite realized the implications of the MF Global scandal.
Zerohedge: French CEO About Ratings Agencies: ‘We Have To Shoot All These Guys’
BusinessInsider: Almost $2 Billion Of Merchandise Is Shoplifted In The Weeks Leading Up To Christmas
BBC: Euro dips beneath 100 yen for first time in ten years. - Euro remains near its low for 2011 - The euro is near its low for the year following a tumultuous 12 months in which its existence has been questioned.
Krugman: Keynes Was Right: “The boom, not the slump, is the right time for austerity at the Treasury.” So declared John Maynard Keynes in 1937, even as FDR was about to prove him right by trying to balance the budget too soon, sending the United States economy — which had been steadily recovering up to that point — into a severe recession.
Yahoo: US job market ends year in better shape - Modest economic growth, fewer layoffs points to steady hiring gains next year
BBC: Recession 'to return' to Europe, say economists - The vast majority of leading economists polled by the BBC believe recession will return to Europe next year.
NYT: Young Women Go Back to School Instead of Work
BusinessInsider: Crooks That Hack Your Credit Card Numbers Are Selling Them For $3.50 Online
Bankrate.com: What do you really cost your bank?
CapitalGainsandGames: Most GOP Presidential Candidates Get An F On The Budget
WSJ China to Damp Foreign Investment in Auto Sector - China will withdraw its support for foreign capital in the country's auto-manufacturing sector in an effort to build up its domestic industry, state media reported late Thursday.
WSJ: Deepening Crisis Over Euro Pits Leader Against Leader
EuroObserver: France to hold jobs summit as unemployment hits 12-year high - A sharp rise in France's unemployment figures is putting pressure on President Nicolas Sarkozy to deliver, with over half the French population wanting the candidates for the spring presidential election to focus their energies on maintaining jobs.
Bloomberg: Jobless Claims in U.S. Hit Three-Year Low
SeattleTimes: Unemployment claims rise after steady declines - The number of people seeking unemployment benefits rose last week after three weeks of decline.
BusinessWeek: Slowing China Means Ore-Ship Rates at Lowest in Decade: Freight
SeattleTimes: Spain gears up for austerity under new government - Spain's new conservative government is set to unveil its first austerity measures later Friday as it tries to reassure markets that it has a plan to get a grip on its public finances at the same time as kickstarting an economy saddled with sky-high unemployment.
Bloombert: Poland's central bank intervenes to prop up zloty
Spiegel: Former Deutsche Bank CEO Hilmar Kopper - 'Money Needs Laws'
Peak oil and Energy News
NYT: In North Dakota, A Great Divide Over Oil Riches
CalculatedRisk: Gasoline Prices and Brent WTI Spread - The year is almost over and once again a key downside risk for the economy is high gasoline prices.
USAToday: How will light bulbs change? Here are some answers - The nation's new light bulb rules start taking effect Sunday. What exactly do they require, and what's their likely impact, since Congress barred funds to enforce the efficiency standards? Here are some answers:
DetroitNews: Congress ends corn ethanol subsidy - The United States has ended a 30-year tax subsidy for corn-based ethanol that cost taxpayers $6 billion annually, and ended a tariff on imported Brazilian ethanol.
BusinessInsider: US Gasoline Sales Show No Sign Of Economic Recovery
NYT: Oil Prices Predicted to Stay Above $100 a Barrel Through Next Year
SeattleTimes: US crude oil supplies grow by 3.9 million barrels
BlacklistedNews: Gold Bubble Seen by Soros on Brink of Bear Market: Commodities
Reuters: Monuments vanish, power cut as metal thieves stalk UK
Mineweb: Gold ends 2011 11% higher
Yahoo: Japanese whalers ask US courts to stop activists
Yahoo: Rare Asian Bird Takes “Wrong Turn”, Lands in Tennessee
Time: Why Warmer Water Leads to Male Offspring -- If You're a Fish - To a list that includes extreme weather patterns and disappearing polar bears, you can add another dispiriting effect of climate change: too many males.
USAToday: Several people killed as Cyclone Thane hits southeast India
SOTT: UK: Mystery foam engulfs northern seaside town
BBC: 2011 is UK's second warmest year on record
WeatherUnderground: Weather Extremes : South Pole Records Warmest Temperature on Record: On Christmas Day, December 25th, the temperature at the Amundsen-Scott South Pole site soared to an all-time record high of 9.9°F (-12.3°C) at 3:50 p.m. local time, eclipsing the former record of 7.5°F (-13.6°C) set on December 27, 1978.
CNN: Graves may be exhumed over Pennsylvania sinkhole - Officials in Pennsylvania may give the go-ahead Friday to begin the exhumation of graves as a large sinkhole encroaches on a historic Allentown cemetery.
MSNBC: Rhino poaching hits record as horns worth more than gold - Street value of rhinoceros horns soars to about $65,000 a kilogram
MSNBCPhotoBlog: 11 killed as Cyclone Thane hits southeast India
CNN: Alert raised around Alaska volcano after likely 'single explosion'
America in Decline
LegitGov: Russia scolds United States for human rights abuse
DesdemonaDespair: Copper thieves darken streetlights, create road hazards
BlacklistedNews: New Report: "Recording Everything" Details How Governments Can Shape the Dynamics of Dissent
ProPublica: Invasion of the Body Scanners: They’re Spreading, But Are They Safe and Effective?
NakedCapitalismL US Wars Far From Over - Yves Smith - This Real News Network interview with David Swanson, which focuses on Obama’s PR on the “end” of the war in Iraq, also underscores a theme in Matt Stoller’s post on Ron Paul yesterday: the deep commitment of both parties to a large and active military.
BlacklistedNews: How Your Privacy Will Be Invaded in 2012
DesdemonaDespair: The truth about the U.S. poverty crisis
TruthOut: Why Are American Citizens Getting Locked Up and Even Deported by Immigration Authorities? - Rania Khalek, AlterNet: "Although it's difficult to obtain an exact number of Americans illegally detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) … over 4,000 US citizens were detained or deported in 2010 alone…. The [New York] Times points out that 'Any case where an American is held, even briefly, for immigration investigation is a potential wrongful arrest because immigration agents lack legal authority to detain citizens.'"
DailyMail: Tweeting the word 'virus' could mean your Twitter account is read by U.S. government
NYT: Cities turn off their lights as budgets get slashed and revenues decline"When you come through at night, it's scary; you have to wonder if anyone is lurking around waiting to catch you off your guard"
Yahoo: Court OKs immunity for telecoms in wiretap case
Appeals court OKs law giving telecom companies immunity for government's surveillance program
MSNBC: CEO stock options give companies tax windfall - Quirk in tax law means CEOs benefit and companies benefit. Uncle Sam? Not so much
DailyBail: Ralph Nader, Ron Paul, Kucinich & Chomsky: "End The Left-Right Delusion, Corporatism Is The TRUE Enemy"
Food and Water
Opinionator: Bacteria 1, FDA 0 - Earlier this month, the Maine-based grocery chain Hannaford issued a ground beef recall after at least 14 people were infected with an antibiotic-resistant strain of salmonella. Chances are this is the first you’ve heard of it.
BlacklistedNews: The billion-dollar pest: U.S. beetle is developing resistance to one of the most widely used genetically modified crops, say scientists
Cryptogon: Rootworms Becoming Resistant to Monsanto’s Genetically Modified Corn
BangorDaily: Peanut prices jump as hot, dry weather reduces US production
SOTT: FLASHBACK: The New Frontier: Genetically Modified Oil Wars
KuwaitTimes: Global water shortage imminent, warn experts
MotherJones: The FDA's Christmas Present for Factory Farms - On Dec. 22, while even the nerdiest observers were thinking more about Christmas plans than food-safety policy, the FDA snuck a holiday gift to the meat industry into the Federal Register. The agency announced it had essentially given up any pretense of regulating antibiotic abuse on factory farms, at least for the time being.
MSNBC: NTMWD to Consider Stage 4 Water Restrictions
PopSci: Instant Kool-Aid is a Marvel of Technology
Science and Technology
LegitGov: MoD forced to update combat war games to cope with expectations of PlayStation generation
BBC: Model unlocks human impact on Africa's fire regimes - A model has helped shed light on how human-started fires shaped Africa's landscape, researchers report.
BlacklistedNews: NSTIC, Google & SEO: Google is now a credentialed provider of Trusted Identities for the federal government
BusinessInsider: Here's Verizon's Weak Statement For Why Its 4G Network Keeps Failing (VZ)
Cryptogon: The History of MIT’s Blatant Suppression of Cold Fusion
MSNBC: NASA probes may find remnants of moon's lost sibling - Grail mission to study lunar composition, look for buried evidence of 'Big Splat'
Medical and Health
Wired: Potential Neuropoison Could Be In Our Food - One of the most comprehensive analyses yet of human exposure to PBDEs, or polybrominated diphenyl ethers, shows that the chemical — long used in everything from computers to sleeping bags — enters humans through their diets, not just their household. “The more meat you eat, the more PBDEs you have in your serum,” said Alicia Fraser, who headed the new study, published this month in Environmental Health Perspectives.PBDEs are chemical cousins of polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs, which are known to cause birth defects and neurological impairments.
ScientificAmerican: Aging Brains Match Youth in Some Mental Tasks
BBC: Two wards at Wrexham Maelor Hospital hit by norovirus - Two wards at Wrexham Maelor Hospital have been closed to new admissions after an outbreak of norovirus, the winter vomiting bug.
Economix: Wyden-Ryan's Unrealistic Assumptions - Laura D’Andrea Tyson - In a surprising year-end act of bipartisanship, Representative Paul D. Ryan, Republican of Wisconsin, and Senator Ron Wyden, Democrat of Oregon, offered a proposal to reduce the growth of Medicare spending, envisioning a fundamental transformation of Medicare to a “managed competition” or “premium support” system.
CNNHealth: Protecting babies from neurotoxins
Time: Super-Duper Hydrocodone? An Open Letter to Big Pharma
TheChart: Studies suggest Avastin can help ovarian cancer patients
Vitals: Senior moment - or just mulling a response?
Doomsteading, Gardening, Urban Farming
CityFarmer: Booze for Free
ModernSurvivalBlog: Fukushima Nuclear Meltdown Update
WBIR: Tenn. tourist wanted to check gun at WTC
YahooNews: Russian ship heads to Alaska to help iced-in city
Grist: 10 bicycling myths debunked
Here at Grist, we are all about accuracy. So when it comes to bicycling, the pastime that can solve all of America's most pressing problems (well, most of them -- see, accuracy!), we're like heat-seeking missiles in search of myths and misinformation. Our goal is simple: to get you to trade in your four-wheeled gas guzzler for a lean, clean, calorie-burning machine. Here are the top 10 myths that we debunked this year, all linked up and annotated for your enjoyment. Read on, ride on -- and for god sake, put some clothes on!
BBC: Samoa PM: Losing a day feels great
GlobeandMail: Fire aboard Russian nuclear submarine injures 7
McClatchy: In central China, shadowy sex case ensnares local officials
RawStory: Supporter tells Gingrich: Media ‘accurate’ to ‘kill the Republican Party’
BlacklistedNews: 40 Hard Questions That The American People Should Be Asking Right Now
WashingtonPost: Virginia's ballot-access laws turn tables on GOP
MotherJones: Nullification Makes a Comeback
NYT: In G.O.P. Field, Broad View of Presidential Power Prevails
TinfoilPalace: Book reveals the story of cross-dressing boy emperor Elagabalus, whose savagery and sexual hedonism were unparallelled
TinfoilPalace: Record Temps @ South PoleTheOilAge: Sunni Iraqis call for US intervention
TheOilAge: China Wins $700M Afghan Oil/Gas Bid Why Didn’t US Bid
HubbertsArms: Better Get Your U.S. Passport Now
HubbertsArms: All hands on deck , prepare to repel boarders
SilentCountry: Guy McPherson at Nature Bats Last: Guest essay, "Occupy:
SilentCountry: Middle-aged borrowers piling on student debt