Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Breaking News Wed. March 28, 2012

 Happy "Hump Day" one and all. Looks like it's all over but the cryin' on the healthcare law. We'll hear what the court decides late June.

The Supreme Court on Wednesday ended more than six hours of oral arguments over three days about whether President Barack Obama's signature healthcare law would survive constitutional scrutiny, setting up to deliver a ruling on its fate by late June.

Over the past three days, the nine-member court delved into whether Congress exceeded its authority by requiring most Americans to obtain health insurance by 2014 or face a penalty, along with whether the entire wide-ranging law must be struck down if they found that critical provision to be invalid. 

Much thanks also to RJ at the Global Glass Onion and the Ozarker at Conflicted Doomer , and to Doug at 3Es News and David at ETF Daily! These good friends help make this blog what it is so do, go by and support their efforts and hard work.
And to everyone visiting the blog today,  drop by the forums linked at the bottom of the post and join in the fun and debate!

Peak Oil and Energy News
CNNMoney: Oil prices to take bite out of summer travel
UPI: Showdown looming over U.S. oil subsidies
FuelFix: Talks under way to release oil reserves - French energy minister signals possible co-ordinated action, as concerns mount that high crude prices risk derailing economic recovery
GlobeAndMail: Say goodbye to cheap oil
Reuters: Analysis: Libya's oil contracts to be unsure for months more - Uncertainty about oil and gas companies' contracts with Libya, soon to be scrutinized and potentially revised, will persist until new leaders take power after June elections, delaying the industry's return to normal in the post-Gaddafi era.
SFGate: Oil rigs in U.S. at highest count since 1987 
BusinessInsider: How Peak Oil Will Shatter Cities Like Merriam, Kansas
BBC: 'Top up' in case of strike - PM - Motorists should top up their tanks in case a strike by fuel tanker drivers goes ahead but there is no need to queue, the PM says.
TheGlobeAndMail: World oil import bill nears $2-trillion: IEA - Oil-importing nations are set to pay a record $2-trillion this year for oil imports if crude prices do not fall, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said on Tuesday, undermining economic recovery.Crude hit $128 (U.S.) a barrel this month, only $20 short of its 2008 peak, and is up more than 15 per cent since January, largely because of sanctions against oil producer Iran.
Reuters: UPDATE 2-Total dismisses blast risk as gas leaks near flare
BelfastTelegraph: Thousands riot over fuel prices - Thousands of Indonesians protesting at plans to push up fuel prices by more than 30% have clashed with riot police.  
ETFDaily: President Obama’s Devious Plan To Crush Gasoline Prices

Global Conflict
Reuters: Gunmen kidnap Saudi diplomat in Yemen
RawStory: U.S. acted to conceal evidence of intelligence failure before 9/11: UK 
The US government shut down a series of court cases arising from a multimillion pound business dispute in order to conceal evidence of a damning intelligence failure shortly before the 9/11 attacks, MPs were told. 
McClatchy: Mission to reclaim U.S. soldiers' remains shelved as Korean tensions rise
WSJ: Police Are Investigating Video of French Attacks
McClatchy: Big suicide bomb plot allegedly involving Afghan soldiers uncovered in Kabul  
NYT: Netanyahu and Barak Forge a Bond on Israel’s Iran Crisis - JERUSALEM — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak have turned into the odd couple of Israeli politics in whose hands sits the prospect of an attack on Iran. From opposite political traditions with distinct experiences and worldviews, the two have forged a tight bond, often excluding the rest of the Israeli leadership. 
BBC: Syria forces 'targeting children' - Syrian forces are detaining and torturing children in their crackdown on opposition activists, UN human rights chief Navi Pillay tells the BBC.
Alternet: Time to Get Out of Afghanistan
IBTimes: Skin Color Reason Enough For Police To Check ID: German Court
A German court's ruling that the police can check an individual's ID on the basis of skin color has drawn severe backlash from the black community, which likened the court decision to institutionalized racism.
BBC: Afghan women are 'wrongly jailed'
BlacklistedNews: Toulouse Gunman Probably Had Accomplice
Hosted: Arab ministers want Syria to halt crackdown 
VOA: US Lawmakers Call for 'Hard-Nosed' Approach With Iran  - Leading U.S. lawmakers are urging the Obama administration to take an even tougher stance with Iran over its nuclear program, questioning whether expanding economic sanctions are making a difference.
MSNBC: Turmoil builds in China's Tibetan regions 
IBTimes: Tibetan Man Dies from Self Immolation
The Tibetan protester, who set himself on fire earlier this week to protest the visit of Chinese President Hu Jintao to India later this week for BRICS Summit on March 29, died on Wednesday.
RawStory: U.S. could fly spy drones from Australian territory

StarsAndStripes: Leader of Mali coup received officer training from AFRICOM
Spiegel: Obama's Over-Hasty Withdrawal  - Iraq Is Neither Sovereign, Stable nor Self-Reliant
Reuters: Insight: In secret unit, clues to top Israeli duo's chemistry
WashingtonPost: US seeks papal intervention in case of detained American In Cuba

WashingtonPost: The rich are different; they get richer - Occupy Wall Street is not known for the precision of its economic analysis, but new research on income distribution in the United States shows that the group’s sloganeering provides a stunningly accurate picture of the economy.

Domestic Financial News
Zerohedge: WTF Bloomberg Chart Of The Day - That idiocy is job requirement for the bulk of sell-side "bankers" has long been known. That Bloomberg wishes to glorify it by making Wells Fargo's prediction of S&P 3700 by 2022 its "chart of the day", however, is absolutely ridiculous, and certainly qualifies for the WTF moment of the day.
AngryBear: As Goes Obamacare, So Goes Romneycare … and State Laws Requiring Auto Insurance? 
TaxPolicyCenter: Ryan Would Shift the Fiscal Burden to Low and Middle-Income Households
Bloomberg: San Jose’s Credit Rating Cut by Moody’s on Decline in Reserves
MyBudget360: The modern day Gilded Age - in 2010 top one percent captured over half of all income gains. From early 2009 the S&P 500 is up 109 percent but home prices are at new lows falling almost 34 percent.
McClatchy: Poll: Americans' optimism on economy is growing slowly, but gas prices pinch
CNN: Fight over transportation bills threatens highway projects
FDL: Democrats Realize Pro-Fraud Legislation Not in Their Interests - After both houses of Congress passed it, the White House is finally recognizing that the deregulatory bill they proposed and pushed is distasteful to liberals who have actually looked at it for longer than two seconds:
CBSNews: Is individual mandate in trouble?
WashingtonPost: On last day of health care hearing, Supreme Court considers severability ...
ArsTechnica: Cue KC & The Sunshine Band: RIAA celebrates a (small) sales increase - The Recording Industry Association of America announced their first overall sales increase since 2004.
TaxPolicyBlog: Thoughts on the Health Care Case Thus Far - I've just read through the transcript of the first two days of oral argument in the health care case. Below are my impressions of each justice's questions, followed by all references to the tax power argument so far.CuriousCapitalist: Housing Prices Fall to 2003 Levels, But Demand May Be Building - It’s now officially a lost decade for home prices. With the release of the January data for the Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller Home Price Indexes, prices in a national composite dropped 3.8% from a year before, rolling back to the levels of early 2003.
ETFDailyNews: Debt Bubble: Why “Too Big To Fail” Banks Still Face Much Trouble Ahead
CalculatedRisk: Housing: Toll Brothers "Orders up significantly", "Best Spring season in five years"
CapitalSpectator: Durable Goods Orders Rebound After January's Slump
CalculatedRisk: Refinance Applications Drop for Sixth Consecutive Week

FDL: Simpson-Bowles Resurrected for House Budget Vote - The House vote on the budget will not just include an up-or-down vote on the Paul Ryan version. As per custom, several budgets will get a vote that day. The Republican Study Group introduced their budget, which slashed spending even further and more quickly than Ryan’s and cut Medicaid more deeply, today. Hardline conservatives who support the RSG plan are in fact taking credit for making Ryan’s budget even tougher.
IBTimes: Bernanke: Fed Stopped Global Economic Catastrophe
LifeInc: Almost 2 out of 10 men in their prime are not working
Forbes: Peter Schiff: Market-Crushing Treasury Collapse To Hit Around 2013 - Peter Schiff, the divisive investor and commentator that predicted the subprime/real-estate bubble, is forecasting a U.S. dollar and bond crisis over the next couple of years.  Schiff blames intervened bond markets, where rates are artificially and excessively low, and expects the coming crisis to blow the 2008-9 financial crisis out of the water.
FinancialArmageddon: 'The American Economic Model Is Broken'
Bloomberg: Stockton Gets Ratings Cut by Moody’s as Bankruptcy Option Looms - Stockton, the California city on the brink of bankruptcy, had its pension-obligation and lease- revenue bond ratings cut by Moody’s Investors Service on about $341 million in debt.
Bloomberg: Providence Bankruptcy Seen as Unavoidable on Budget Gap - Providence, Rhode Island’s capital and biggest city, probably will seek bankruptcy court protection to deal with a budget deficit, Robert Flanders, the state- appointed receiver for nearby Central Falls, said today.CNNMoney: Under pressure, Goldman changes board leadership
AngryBearBlog: The Central Flaw in Krugman’s Argument Against Keen

Global Financial News
Zerohedge: This Is The World's Balance Sheet
BusinessInsider: A Man Has Set Himself On Fire Outside A Tax Office In Italy - A 58-year-old man has set himself on fire outside of a tax office in Bologna, Ansa
NYT: Europe Urged to Increase Firewall to a Trillion EurosCreditWritedowns: On Spain’s coming under the watchful eye of the Troika in 2012
BusinessInsider: Analyst Visits China And Comes Back With Some Bad News
TheGlobeAndMail: Why Europe is on a path to financial disaster  - With Greek Bailout 2, Europe has run out of options for supporting its failing states and, in doing so, has run out of room for its economies to grow. Domestic savings are stagnant; and given already hefty fiscal spending bills and rising tax burdens, availability of private capital will be a major problem for investment in the medium term. 

BBC: EU to end 'rip off' roaming fees
Zerohedge: Europe’s Bazooka Will Fire Blanks… Good Luck Killing the Crisis With That
MNINews: Fitch: Portuguese Banks Still On "Shaky Ground" - Fitch ratings said today that Portuguese banks are still on "shaky ground," with liquidity pressures that make them highly dependent on funding from the European Central Bank.
Bloomberg: Spanish Economy Enters Second Recession, Bank of Spain Says - Spain’s economy is suffering its second recession since 2009, the Bank of Spain said, a development that obstructs the government’s efforts to reorder public finances as it prepares the budget for this year
Zerohedge: Europe Leaks It Will Fix Crushing Debt Problem With €940 Billion Of More EFSFESM Debt
MJPerry: China: America's Third Largest and Fastest Growing (By Far) Export Market, 2000-2011 - Some highlights from the U.S.-China Business Council's recently released report "U.S. Exports to China: 2000-2011":

Mineweb: Gold slips below $1,680/oz as commodities retreat
ETFDaily: The Other Precious Metals: 4 Ways To Diversify With Palladium and Platinum

M 4.6, northern Sumatra, Indonesia
M 3.3, Southern CaliforniaNPR: Colo. Wildfire Could Be Linked To Controlled Burn Grim soundings from the northern deep - In Newfoundland, the cod have not come back and a way of life is gone. New England scientists and fishermen fear it's an omen.
PETTY HARBOUR, Newfoundland - For more than 500 years, the black waters off this craggy coast of rust-colored hills and ice-bound coves teemed with a seemingly endless supply of cod, so much that it sparked wars, drew immigrants from far away, and gave rise to a thriving fishing industry and a way of life passed across generations.
But after years of overfishing, changing sea temperatures, and mismanagement, the olive-backed, spotted fish known as the northern cod virtually vanished. In the summer of 1992, as boat after boat returned to this windswept land with empty nets, Canadian officials did something once unthinkable: They banned fishing cod.
CNN: Officials: No progress yet in containing deadly fire
WSJ: More 'Booms' Shake Wisconsin Town - Beginning Sunday, March 18, the town was hit by several nights of mysterious underground booms starting around 8 or 10 in the evening and continuing until around 6 a.m. The noises and rumblings were confined to one neighborhood in the city and disrupted sleep for many residents for two to three nights.
IBTimes: Earth Close to Tipping Point on Climate Change - Earth is close to reaching tipping point, and it will become impossible for us to reverse global warming, according to a report.
Scientists from the Australian National University's Climate Change Institute have discovered that global warming is very close to becoming irreversible if greenhouse gas emission is not controlled. They found that the earth's temperature is likely to rise by six degrees Celsius by 2100 if no action is taken.
CNN: Climate scientists and smear campaigns - Imagine you are sitting in your office simply doing your job and a nasty e-mail pops into your inbox accusing you of being a fraud. You go online and find that some bloggers have written virulent posts about you. That night, you're at home with your family watching the news and a talking head is lambasting you by name. Later, a powerful politician demands all your e-mails from your former employer.
It sounds surreal. But it all happened to me.
DesdemonaDespair: ‘Excessively and abnormally hot weather’ in Nigeria blamed on razing of rainforest
HuronDailyTribune: Very high radiation, little water in Japan reactor  - TOKYO (AP) -- One of Japan's crippled nuclear reactors still has fatally high radiation levels and much less water to cool it than officials had estimated, according to an internal examination that renews doubts about the plant's stability. 
BBC: Plant probe finds high radiation - The operator of Japan's crippled Fukushima nuclear plant has said damage to one of the reactors is much worse than previously thought.
A probe inserted into reactor two at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant revealed lethal doses of radiation and that the level of cooling water inside was far lower than expected.

DesdemonaDespair: Fukushima Prefecture deleted 5 days of radiation dispersion data just after meltdowns
In Israel, a battle to save the ancient Canaan dog
SHA’AR HAGAI, Israel — Pricked, pointy ears and almond-shaped brown eyes. A tan or black-and-white coat and a tail that curls upward. For many in Israel, this is the description of a pesky stray that feeds on garbage. But for a passionate few, it is a cultural treasure that should be preserved.
MotherJones: And You Thought That Heat Wave Was Bad? - Purdue University climatologist Matthew Huber gets plenty of death threats, but that hasn't stopped him from exploring the outer limits of just how much global warming human beings can tolerate.
DesdemonaDespair: Global poaching crisis: ‘We’re losing all of our wildlife, and people are just sitting back and letting it happen’
ScienceDaily: Viral disease -- particularly from herpes -- gaining interest as possible cause of coral decline
ThinkProgress: Connecting The Dots On Climate And Extreme Weather: Must-Watch PBS Story On Devastating Texas Drought - After releasing a fantastic piece last December on the link between climate change and “mind-boggling” extreme weather, PBS is taking its coverage of the issue one step further. The PBS NewsHour has just rolled out a new series, “Coping With Climate Change,” using multi-media reporting to explore the impact that our warming planet is having on American communities.

America in Decline
CharlesHughSmith: Welcome to the United States of Orwell, Part 3: We had to Destroy Democracy in Order to Save It
DenverPost: Denver targets illegal camping; critics call it a bid to criminalize homelessness - In an effort to deal with increasing numbers of the homeless on Denver's streets, the City Council is expected to consider an ordinance that would "ban unauthorized camping" throughout the city. That means people would be breaking the law by putting up tents or shelters or bedding down in sleeping bags anywhere that camping is unauthorized — meaning on the 16th Street Mall, on sidewalks, in alleys or by the South Platte River. Word of the proposed ordinance — which already has the support of Denver's mayor and many in the business community — has sparked the ire of advocates for the homeless, who call it a move to criminalize homelessness.
Alternet: Fired for a Short Skirt? The Realities of Anti-Worker Laws in Wisconsin and Ohio -  The bans on collective bargaining, enacted in Wisconsin and overturned in Ohio, have had effects not just on organizing, but on workers' daily lives.

Food and Water
Spiegel: 'Freegetarian' Feast: Berlin Group Declares War on Food Waste - A series of communal dinners in Berlin is bringing together like-minded food lovers to enjoy meals concocted using local merchants' leftover, unwanted produce. The events are aimed at raising awareness about massive consumer food waste in Germany and the West.  
DesdemonaDespair: U.S. intelligence report warns of global water tensions
Grist: The woman who took on Koch Industries to save her farm

TreeHugger: Startling New Research Suggests Popcorn is a Powerful Super Food - Although popcorn has taken a beating for its tendency to end up in compromising positions -- like slathered in “golden flavor” at the movie theater or harboring offensive chemicals courtesy of microwave-popping packaging -- new research is showing that it is a super-nutrient powerhouse.
DesdemonaDespair: Scientists warn phosphorus supplies could run out, leading to famine and war

Science and Technology
Wired: Computers in the Living Room: Xbox Has Never Been A Game System
IBTimes: First Foreign Excavation Mission in Southern Iraq Since 2003: Archaeologists Overcome Fear; Bronze Age ‘Royal’ Tomb Discovered - A team of Italian archaeologists have found a third millennium BC tomb in southern Iraq, which was the cradle of Sumerian civilization during the Bronze Age.
The tomb, excavated at a 42-hectare site at Abu Tbeirah, located around 12 miles from the city of Ur, may provide insight into the Sumerian civilization that flourished in southern Mesopotamia, modern-day Iraq, from 4000 to 3100 BC until the Akkadian Empire took over around 2270 BC.
Sumerians are considered as the region’s first civilized people, who were pioneers in agriculture, industries, trade, metalwork, weaving and pottery.
ScienceDaily: New process converts polyethylene into carbon fiber
IBTimes: Comets Deposited Building Blocks Of Life On Earth: Scientists
CANOE: 'Billions' of habitable worlds in Milky Way 
Astronomers hunting for rocky planets with the right temperature to support life estimate there may be tens of billions of them in our galaxy alone.  
ArsTechnica: The billion-dollar fight for control of mobile money 
ScientificAmerican: New Maps of Mercury Show Icy Looking Craters on the Solar System's Innermost Planet 
BBC: Fossils hint at mystery walker 

Medical and Health
DesdemonaDespair: Oil spill cleanup workers sought for long-term health study -GULF SHORES, Alabama -- State and federal health officials are asking anyone who worked on the BP oil spill cleanup to sign up for what has become the biggest study of its kind.
More than 16,000 people, including beach cleanup crews, Vessels of Opportunity operators, support personnel and others have signed up for the Gulf Long-term Followup, or GuLF, Study, said Dale Sandler, chief of the Epidemiology Branch of the National Institute of Environmental Health.
ScienceDaily: New gene therapy approach developed for red blood cell disorders
SkyNews: Medical Wonder: How Docs Did Face Transplant-The most complex and extensive face transplant ever attempted has been hailed a huge success and means surgeons can now tackle even more challenging reconstructions.
PopSci: Q&A: The Quest for a Male Contraceptive
CNN: 10 lesser known effects of health care reform law
RawStory: Idaho kills forced ultrasound bill - Idaho’s controversial forced ultrasound bill was killed Tuesday evening after a House committee chairman declined to hold a hearing on the bill, just days after its Senate passed the legislation. 

FiscalTimes: 7 Provisions in Obamacare You Haven’t Heard Of

Doomsteading, Gardening, Urban Farming
DetroitNews: Urban farming idea slowly sprouts in Detroit
City is close to signing deal with for-profit group to beautify neighborhoods, allow city to grow tax base
CanadianDoomer: An Alternative to Rising Gas Prices
ModernSurvival: A Good Foundation: Your Feet, Socks and Boots

ModernSurvival: You Are Being Followed
WaldenEffect: Saving kale seeds
CityFarmer: 100 Years Ago – New York City Farmers in 1912! 

Other News
Reuters: Judge acquits militia members of sedition, conspiracy

CommonDreams: New York Assembly Committee Approves Resolution Calling for a Constitutional Amendment to Overturn Citizens United - Albany, NY - March 27 - The New York Assembly’s Election Law Committee today approved a resolution calling for a constitutional amendment to overturn the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. Fed...
IBTimes:Lorax Statue Stolen From Home Of Dr. Seuss, Widow Audrey Geisel - The 3-foot, 300-pound bronze Lorax statue that sits outside of the San Diego home of Dr. Seuss, whose real name was Theodor Geisel, was stolen over the weekend.
LegitGov: George Zimmerman son of judge with sealed closed arrest record in Fla. 27 Mar 2012 'Now we know why George Zimmerman didn't get arrested... No Words... According to court records, George Zimmerman is the son of retired Supreme Court Magistrate Judge Robert J Zimmerman, his mother Gladys Zimmerman is a court clerk... He has three closed arrests: 7/18/05 for resisting arrest with violence and battery on a law enforcement officer div 10... 8/9/05 for domestic violence div 44... And again on 8/10/05, domestic violence div 46 ***'
IBTimes: Trayvon Martin Case: Elderly Couple Forced Out Of Home After Incorrect George Zimmerman Address Goes Viral On Twitter
IBTimes: Trayvon Martin Case: New Orleans Police Officer Resigns After Saying Teen ‘Acted Like A Thug’
MiamiHerald: Rep. Bobby Rush escorted from House floor for donning Trayvon-inspired hoodie

USAToday: Mega Millions lottery game at record $476 million jackpot 
NYDaily: Mega Millions soars to half a billion
CBSNews: Paralyzed woman held captive and beaten by NY couple, police say - (CBS) NEW YORK -A New York couple has been arrested for allegedly kidnapping a partially paralyzed woman and controlling her finances for more than a year, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said Tuesday.
CBS New York reports Brown said that 42-year-old Patrick Donovan and 63-year-old Mae Washington held the 58-year-old woman against her will, beating her repeatedly with their fists and a cane.
The woman said both Donovan and Washington would lock her in her room and on several occasions bound her hands, legs and mouth with tape.
"The defendants are accused into turning the victim's life into a living nightmare," Brown said.
UPI: Man returns overdue books from 1920s

JetBlue Pilot Story 
Hosted: JetBlue captain: 'They're going to take us down'
CSMonitor: Plastic restraints failed to hold pilot, JetBlue CEO vows review
Bloomberg: JetBlue Pilot in Rant Called 'Consummate Professional'
CNN: Passengers subdue pilot Passengers recount terror as JetBlue captain breaks down
CNN: JetBlue CEO: 'Medical situation' triggered captain's behavior, emergency landing
CBSNews: JetBlue captain could face charges
Reuters: Jet Blue pilot suspended after disturbance on US flight

WashingtonPost: Pro-Romney PAC spends big money to 'slash and burn' opponents
ChicagoSunTimes: Gingrich campaign lays off one-third staff, shifts focus to social media
RawStory: Romney: Uninsured with preexisting conditions should be denied coverage
CBSnews: George HW Bush to endorse Romney
FiscalTimes: Santorum's Lead Vanishes in Pa.

TinfoilPalace: The Case For Alien Control Of Earth
TinfoilPalace: Joyce Meyer's bodyguard murdered his family
TheOilAge: Richmond Fed misses, consumer confidence drops 
TheOilAge: Obama Supports DNA Sampling Upon Arrest 
HubbertsArms: Saudi Arabia May Be Tied to 9/11, 2 Ex-Senators Say 
HubbertsArms: Sucks when the driver starts acting like a crazed chimp 
SilentCountry: This had to be the flight from hell! w/video
SilentCountry: Gas cloud encircles Total's Elgin-Franklin platform- union
DestinyCalls: Britain, America, The Bank of England, The Fed and Two World Wars 
DestinyCalls: The dead scientist list  


  1. I thought so too La Curee. Looks smart too.
    Hope they can preserve them.
    hey, thanks for commenting too. :D