Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Breaking News Wed. Aug. 1, 2012

Halfway through yet another week! I hope it's going well for everyone so far.
Getting things pulled together here at the old doomstead and will be working on some new art pieces soon. Fingers crossed!

Much thanks to RJ at the Global Glass Onion and the Ozarker at Conflicted Doomer , and to Doug at 3Es News and David at ETF Daily.
Be sure to stop by their excellent blogs and sites and say hello! And don't forget to visit the forums linked at the bottom of this, and every post.

Peak Oil and Energy News
NYT: Power Is Restored Across India After Crippling Blackout
Zerohedge: Heat Wave Can't Get You $8 Natural Gas in 2012 
WorldCrunch: Oil-Rich Venezuela Joins Mercosur Trading Bloc

Reuters: UPDATE 1-US crude stocks plunge nearly 12 million barrels-API
SeattleTimes: Ailing Calif. nuke plant cost: $165 million so far
UPI: Libya's oil production below pre-war level
NBCNews: Shell scales back Arctic drilling this summer
The first drilling in Arctic waters off Alaska later this summer is being curtailed, Shell said Tuesday. The company focused on the ongoing presence of sea ice, while environmentalists pointed to the fact that Shell has yet to get certification for its spill containment system.
Reuters: UPDATE 1-BP Whiting crude unit to come offline as part of upgrade

Global Conflict
MSNBC: Video: Turning point? Syrian rebels obtain missiles 
CNN: Al-Assad to army: Restore order to Syria

WSJ: U.S. Sees Shift in Terrorist Threats - U.S. officials are increasingly concerned about what they call a growing terrorist threat from Iran as well as an emerging al Qaeda presence in Syria.
Atlantic: The Chances of War With Iran Rise to 38% 

VOA: UN General Assembly to Meet on Syria

NYT: Bahrain Criticized for ‘Torrent’ of Tear Gas Use
JPost: Panetta prepared to use 'other options' to stop Iran

DRONE WARFARE - video at MW666
JPost: PM: Time running out to resolve Iran standoff peacefully
WSJ: U.S. Orders New Sanctions Against Iran

Guardian: How Syria's video activists use camera phones to fight the revolution - video 
VOA: South Korea Rejects North's Terrorism Allegations 

SeattlePI: Bombs kill 21, underlining Iraq chaos

CNN: Pepper-spraying policeman departs UC-Davis

KnoxNews: More details of stunning Y-12 break-in; protesters offered bread to guards - Singing peace protesters offered bread to guards.
...Instead, three aging peaceniks were hanging banners in the dark, splashing blood, and painting messages on the plant's pride-and-joy storage facility, a $549 million fortress which contains the nation's primary supply of bomb-grade uranium.
LAT: Fans, protesters, PETA converge on Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day

Hacker News
Guardian: Murdoch's tablet The Daily lays off nearly a third of its staff

Domestic Financial News
Colorlines: How Our ‘Growth’ Obsession Drives Inequity, and May Kill Us All - Our growth-centrism is animated by misguided assumptions. Left unaltered, they will make life on this planet, particularly for the marginalized and less well off, ever more unbearable and unsustainable.

FDL: Tentative Deal Reached to Fund Government Through March 2013

CNNMoney: A guaranteed fix for the budget deficit
EconomyWatch: Economy may be permanently stuck in slow-growth mode
NYT: The Dinged-Up, Broken-Down, Fender-Bended Economic Recovery Plan
Forbes: 5 Reasons Wall Street Is Killing Retail
BusinessInsider: STEPHEN ROACH: America Can't Keep Relying On Spending To Drive The Economy

Businessweek: Hidden Chick-fil-A Billionaires Hatched as Value Soars
CalculatedRisk: Fannie, Freddie will not Participate in Principal Reduction Program
WSJ: Worried Consumers Save, Don't Spend 

Zerohedge: What Would Jesus Do with Bankers? 
CalculatedRisk: Prediction Contest: July Winners, August Questions 
WSJ: Gauging the Triggers to Fed Action 

Time: Why is Ed DeMarco Blocking a Win-Win Housing Program?
WSJ: Payroll Tax Cut on Track to Quietly Expire
WSJ: Amerigroup's Net Slips 28%

FT: Jobless generation puts brakes on US -- The share of American 18- to 24-year-olds who were employed fell to 54 per cent last year, the lowest since the labour department began tracking data in 1948, according to the Pew Research Center. The share who are in college has risen, but the researchers say this only partly explains the drop. The jobless rate for Americans age 16 to 24 is above 16 per cent, more than twice the national rate. Youth unemployment has reached crisis levels around the world, with almost 13 per cent of the global youth labour force out of work this year, according to the International Labour Organisation.
ProjectSyndicate: America’s Other 30% - The American consumer is but a shadow of its former almighty self. Personal consumption in the United States expanded at only a 1.5% annual rate in real (inflation-adjusted) terms in the second quarter of 2012 – and that was no aberration. Unfortunately, it continues a pattern of weakness that has been evident since early 2008.

CalculatedRisk: Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac Serious Delinquency rates declined in June 
MSNBC: 2 poker sites agree to forfeit $731 million

ATaxingMatter: Does the Tea Party support Tax Dodgers? - Andrew Leonard's July 27 article in Salon, Tea Party Shields Tax Dodgers, looks at the way Jim DeMint and Rand Paul are carrying water for the big banks--suggesting that Treasury shouldn't be implementing the "FATCA" legislation passed as part of the HIRE act because it might cost the big banks some paperwork they'd rather not do. Here's the issue with FATCA.

Bloomberg: Markit Final Index of U.S. Manufacturing Fell to 51.4 in July

Krugman; The Secret of Our Un-success - The Wall Street Journal — yes, the WSJ — explains: Government Cutbacks Separate This Expansion From Others. Over at Angry Bear, Spencer shows that private GDP — GDP not including government spending — has risen almost exactly as fast under Obama as during the “Bush Boom”; of course, if government spending hadn’t been falling despite a weak economy, there would have been more jobs, and private spending would have risen faster. It’s really amazing: between miscalculations on Obama’s part and scorched-earth Republican opposition, what we’ve had is insane austerity in the face of depression — yet we’re having an election centered on the claim that the weak economy shows that government spending doesn’t work.

WallStreetOnParade: Libor Scandal Claims Big Media: ABC and NBC


Global Financial News
MSNBC: Israeli army vet dies after fiery welfare protest - JERUSALEM - A second Israeli who set himself on fire in protest at economic difficulties has died of his injuries, the hospital treating him said on Wednesday.
ResilientCommunities: The Humble Origins of the NEXT Global Economy. Don’t Miss Out. 

NYT: Unemployment at Record High in Euro Zone

WSJ: Asia's Manufacturers Falter Amid Global Slowdown
ABCNews: FACT CHECK: Romney on Polish Economy, Gov't Role
BusinessInsider: Here Comes China's HSBC PMI... 

WSJ: Turkey Trumps Syria Fears 
Bloomberg: Singh Answers Sought as Worst Power Crisis May Hurt Growth
NYT: In China, Manufacturing Growth Still Slumps
SeattleTimes: Fiat earnings slump under poor European sales - Italian carmaker Fiat reported Tuesday that second-quarter net income plummeted by 92 percent as a slump in European sales offset a profit at its U.S. carmaker Chrysler.
SantaCruzSentinel: Deutsche Bank to cut 1,900 jobs as profits drop 
Spiegel: Spain Reports Record Capital Flight
BBC: UK manufacturing falls at fastest rate for three years
Reuters: U.S. raises pressure for euro zone crisis action

Mineweb: The ‘pink gold' rush for potash

M 4.6, 110km E of Madang, Papua New Guinea
M 2.6, 30km WSW of Cantwell, Alaska

Forbes: Is The Great Drought Here To Stay?
SHAWNEETOWN, IL - JULY 16:  A corn plant strug...
The worst drought in more than half a century is smothering America, and it could go on for years.
Guardian: Congress vote on EU carbon scheme may block US airlines from paying
Senate committee clears way for US airlines to be ordered to ignore Europe's carbon emissions trading scheme

ABCNews: Expert: Great White Likely Attacked Mass. Swimmer
CNN: Bird flu has jumped to baby seals, scientists discover 
BBC: Seal flu virus worries scientists 

Guardian: Arctic sea ice melting on par with 2007 record

Treehugger: A Glimpse of What We've Lost: 10 Extinct Animals in Photos

MotherJones: Maps: The Secrets Drillers Can Hide About the Fracking in Your Backyard - Are frackers in your state allowed to keep secrets? A new analysis by the Natural Resources Defense Council shows that most states where fracking occurs have no disclosure laws at all, and that those that do are woefully behind when it comes to revealing behind-the-scenes details of their operations.

Slate: Food as Fuel
This summer’s drought highlights the madness of the government’s ethanol mandates.SeattleTimes: US judge strikes down EPA water rules for mines - The Environmental Protection Agency overstepped its powers by setting up water-quality criteria for coal mining operations in Appalachia, a federal judge ruled Tuesday.

Treehugger: Paul Watson Sends Supporters His First Letter From Exile - We still don't know where Paul Watson is, now that he's skipped bail and left Germany, but the Sea Shepherd founder has issued his first communication to supporters. Watson gives no specific details as to his location, only saying he is "presently in a place on this planet where I feel comfortable, a safe place far away from the scheming nations who have turned a blind eye to the exploitation of our oceans."
KnowledgePromlem: CO2 emission reductions: fracking, recession, renewables? - Several people have pointed out the remarkable fact that carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel combustion have fallen almost to 1995 levels. As the Institute for Energy Research noted, The Energy information Administration reports that energy-related carbon dioxide emissions in the United States are 2.4 percent less in 2011 than they were in 2010, and 9.1 percent less than in 2007 when they hit their peak level. Why are carbon dioxide emissions on a downward trend? IER identifies the main hypotheses for this reduction: economic recession reduces energy use, high oil prices reduce petroleum consumption, switching from coal to natural gas for electricity generation, and some switching to renewables for electricity generation.

TechReview: Using Ozone to Clean Up Fracking 
Guardian: Humpback whale carcass washes up on Sydney beach - video 

The Nation: Feel the Burn: Making the 2012 Heat Wave Matter - There have been two, maybe three, landmark heat waves in the history of man-made global warming. The first was in 1988.

America in Decline
MSNBC: 'He served his country': WWII vet beat up, robbed

Special thanks to RJ for the following link.
Salon: Extremism normalized - Remember when, in the wake of the 9/11 attack, the Patriot Act was controversial, held up as the symbolic face of Bush/Cheney radicalism and widely lamented as a threat to core American liberties and restraints on federal surveillance and detention powers? Yet now, the Patriot Act is quietly renewed every four years by overwhelming majorities in both parties (despite substantial evidence of serious abuse), and almost nobody is bothered by it any longer. That’s how extremist powers become normalized: they just become such a fixture in our political culture that we are trained to take them for granted, to view the warped as normal. Here are several examples from the last couple of days illustrating that same dynamic;

ABCNews: Flight Diverted Over Unclaimed Camera
IBTimes: Shut Up And Pay: Secret Police Facility Costs Taxpayers $2 Million - It's like George Orwell meets the Mad Hatter. A local government board in Arizona finds nothing wrong with charging taxpayers nearly $2 million for a new police facility -- and then refusing to disclose the building's location.

Food and Water
MarginalRevolution: Have the French shown that water privatization is dead? - Some time ago, @ModeledBehavior has requested comment on this article.  Excerpt: Across the nation cash-strapped municipalities are considering the sale of their public-utility systems. These moves are intended to raise cash and rid the municipalities of expensive liabilities such as debt service and pension obligations. But officials considering this approach might do well to look to France and other nations that are rapidly moving in the opposite direction with a “remunicipalization” of their utility systems. In 2010, Paris, in the best known case of remunicipalization, ended contracts with the world’s two biggest water service companies, Suez and Veolia, bringing an end to their 100-year private duopoly. The reversal of a century-old practice in Paris was an acceleration of an international movement away from private control. So what’s up?

Guardian: Zimbabwe food shortages could leave 1.6 million in need of aid in 2013

FDL: House Leaders Drop Farm Bill Extension, Will Instead Push Disaster Relief -- Forget about the farm bill. The House GOP leadership has dropped their efforts to pass a one-year extension of farm programs under current policy, weeks after they dropped efforts to pass a Republican version of the farm bill which has passed the House Agriculture Committee. With substantial opposition on both sides to continuing a program that would deliver direct payments to farmers, something everyone wants to phase out, there was little chance that the one-year extension could pass. Instead, Republicans will try to pass a separate disaster relief bill dealing with livestock producers and their struggles with this summer’s historic drought: The substitute will restore livestock indemnity and forage programs that have expired in the current farm program, with some assistance also for specialty crops.To keep down costs, the aid will apply only to 2012, while offsets will come from imposing caps on two conservation programs much as the House Appropriations Committee has already proposed in its 2013 budget bill. Early estimates indicate the net savings would be about $256 million.

Privacy News

“Big Brother is watching you.” That’s a line from the dystopian classic 1984, but it’s also far closer to reality than most Americans realize. No, there’s not some totalitarian government spy in a trench coat following you, but you are being watched — not by a dictator, but by a handful of companies that make big bucks aggregating tiny scraps of information about you and putting the puzzle pieces together to build your digital profile. Eight lawmakers are demanding that these companies crack open their vaults so Congress can see what they’re compiling about us and what they’re doing with it.

Science and Technology
TechReview: A Computer Infection that Can Never Be Cured
Cosmiclog: Russian tycoon kicks off physics prize with $27 million in awards

FutureOfTech: Ambitious project aims to simulate a billion brain cells

CNN: Fake New York Times op-ed a WikiLeaks hoax
TechReview: Entangled Particles Break Classical Law of Thermodynamics, Say Physicists

Medical and Health
MainlyMacro: Why the National Health Service played a central part in the Olympic Ceremony - What is perhaps not understood outside the UK is that the British regard the NHS as an institution on an equal par to our monarchy. Not beyond criticism, but seen as absolutely essential to national life. While many aspects of the 1945 post-war social transformation have been swept aside (nationalization of utilities) or greatly modified, the idea that the health service should be free to all and paid for through taxation is sacrosanct. Is this attachment to the NHS national self delusion? ... The NHS embodies a principle that in critical matters involving health, all members of a society should be equal. Overall the UK is not a particularly equal society, and income and wealth inequalities have been growing, but this is one area where there is a strong national consensus that while additional income should mean that you contribute more to a health service, this does not entitle you to receive better treatment. Do the British pay dearly for this attachment to equality in health provision? If you look at measures of quality or efficiency, the UK does reasonably well (for example here or here), but what does appear consistent is how badly the US performs in terms of efficiency. ... So what seems more likely is that it is the US aversion to government involvement in health provision that is a little delusional.
InHealth: Primer on Cough/Cold Medicine Abuse 
NBCNews: We're getting sicker: More Americans have a chronic health condition

Bloomberg: Olympians Hanging Up Cleats Risk Drug Addict-Like Ills
TheChart: Some women get new benefits under Obamacare
CNN: 7 Coping Tips for Chronic Migraine Sufferers 

Doomsteading, Gardening, Urban Farming
WaldenEffect: Anna: Crayfish in the garden

Other News
SmokingGun: Kansas Couple Arrested For Walmart Sex - Cops: Pair swiped K-Y Jelly, got busy in front of fellow shoppers

USAToday: Gore Vidal, celebrated author, playwright, dies
CNN: Woman lifts car off dad, performs CPR
Reuters: Army sergeant faces 30-day confinement for abusing soldier

MSNBC: Zimmerman wife to skip arraignment after not guilty plea
CNN: Youths flood Mexican consular offices 

Alternet: The Top 5 Most Hypocritical Corporate Sponsors 
SFGate: Boston priest faces child pornography charges

BuzzFlash: Warning: Dick Cheney Can Constitutionally Be Vice President Again

RT: Romney spokesperson to reporters: ‘Kiss my ass - this is a holy site’ - Mitt Romney has spent nearly a week shaking hands abroad while conducting a foreign policy trip that has managed to somehow spark some of the most uncomfortable roadblocks of his campaign.
Politico: A rare display of bipartisanship before a deadline
IBTimes: Ted Cruz, Backed By Tea Party, Wins Texas GOP Senate Primary 
LAT: Questions about the qualifications of Ted Cruz, the GOP's newest star
CBSNews: Romney to announce VP pick by smartphone app

ABCNews: 28 Years for Ex-Official in Ohio Corruption...NewsOK: Chick-fil-A support, protests are planned in Oklahoma City area

SeattleTimes: Justice Dept: Fast and Furious report distorted - The Justice Department said Tuesday that Republican lawmakers are engaging in distortions by asserting that Operation Fast and Furious arose from a strategy created by the Obama administration. 
VanityFair: Did Romney Fail to Pay Taxes for 10 Years? Maybe, According to Harry Reid and Tenuous Logic

ThinkProgress: Scalia Suggests ‘Hand-Held Rocket Launchers’ Are Protected Under Second Amendment
FirstRead: Obama donates $5,000 to his own campaign

TinfoilPalace: Don't Read If You're Prone to Depression...
TinfoilPalace: Suey-c-i-i-i-i-de Rate by Country

OilAge: 4th night of rioting in Anaheim after police shootings
OilAge: Shale Oil & The Drought = Less water

HubbertsArms: Shocking Photos And Testimony From The Dawood Military Hospital Scandal
HubbertsArms: Queensland public servants, bar police and health workers,entitled to be fearful

SilentCountry: Blackout in India

SilentCountry: Doomer Poetry

DestinyCalls: Operation Mind Control Walter Bowart 1978 

DestinyCalls: Gordon Duff on timeline shift tech

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