Thursday, July 12, 2007

Russian Energy Pipeline Giants to Form Corporate Armies
Putin Announces Plan to Take North Pole
Dubai Eyes Mideast Carbon Trading Market
Iran Won't Allow Extra Gasoline Buying
US Sending New Aircraft Carrier to Mideast
Fed Says Sleight of Hand Works As Long As Everyone Continues Wishing Real Hard (though not in so many words)
Spain Offers Bonus for Babies
The policy of countries such as Russia, Poland and England of rewarding population growth epitomize the tension between the interests of parts versus the whole. J.O.

Files on Illegal Spying Show CIA Skeletons from Cold War
Cindy Sheehan May Run for Nancy Pelosi's Seat
Politics Scuttled US Anti-Al Qaeda Raid
Venezuela Likely to Nationalize Gas Industry This Year
How Roman Farmers Left Their Mark on Nature
Small House Society


bartonbythesea said...

U.S. Foreclosure Filings Jump to Record in First Half -

Has anyone noticed that the U.S. dollar is sliding off the table?

Rice Farmer said...

Naturally I read the Roman farmer item first! This parallels the spotlight that is trained on "terra preta." Recently I have been learning how to make charcoal, and have been dumping my product on the garden. Those interested in human-nature interaction that enriches nature are advised to read about the Japanese "satoyama."

Jacob said...

Barton, yes it surely is being noticed and the Danish corporate world is also taking notice. On of our most prominent business newspapers "Børsen" (translates to The Exchance) writes the following on the frontpage: "Dollar Dive effects vulnerable corporate world".

And on page 10-11 I find this picture.

Some of the headlines are: "The Dollar contines to slide", "Vulnerability to historically weak Dollar", "The US Housing-Lending-Crisis grows dramatically", "The Dollar and Oil lowers Maersk-results", "The falling Dollar adds pressure on the medical industry".

(These headlines are translated from Danish.)
Guess Denmark will have to figure out whether we are a European nation or an US outpost.

bartonbythesea said...


bartonbythesea said...

I just found this comment on the " site -

Ron Paul: U.S. In "Great Danger" Of Staged Terror
Presidential candidate Ron Paul says the U.S. is in "great danger" of a staged terror attack or a Gulf of Tonkin style provocation while also warning that a major collapse of the American economy is on the horizon and could be precipitated by the bombing of Iran and the closure of the Persian Gulf.
Posted Jul 13, 2007 09:22 AM PST

Nothing is more dangerous than a wounded and cornered animal, , which is precisely the way this administration is behaving, both in terms of domestic and foreign policy.

Iran just made it that much harder for administration officials to trump up reasons for invading by announcing cooperation with the IAEA for inspection of their nuclear plants.

The Iraq war is an absolute and complete catastrophe.

So what do we hear current and former government officials doing? Ratcheting up the "fear factor", from Santorum's remarks last week to Chertoff's "gut feeling" that the US is going to be attacked in some manner.

Ron Paul appears to be correct in his assessment that the US is, in fact, being set up from some kind of staged event.

bartonbythesea said...

Jacob - The graph link was great and is a clear indication of global sentiment -

If this continues the Fed's fiat paper might take the place of the old Sears catalog.

Isis said...

What are they up to now, I wonder!

Kissinger-led U.S. group attends closed debate at Putin home.

In addition to Kissinger, the U.S. team includes former Secretary of State George Schultz; former Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin; former Special Representative for Arms Control, Nonproliferation and Disarmament Ambassador Thomas Graham, Jr.; former Senator Sam Nunn; and Chevron Chairman and Chief Executive Officer David O'Reilly

Rice Farmer said...

We saw this coming for a long time.

Iran asks Japan to pay yen for oil

Rice Farmer said...

What happens when the lights go out?

Technological civilization is surprisingly fragile. Some important lessons should have been learned here.

Tyler Havlin said...

Yeah, the dollar is in serious trouble.

From the article:

"The market sentiment is still to sell the dollar," said Jeff Gladstein, global head of currency trading at AIG Financial Products in Wilton, Connecticut. "There is nothing fundamental to change that direction right now."

Jacob said...

White House Denies Request for Documents in Ex-NFL Player's Death

"The White House has refused to give Congress documents about the death of former NFL player Pat Tillman, with White House counsel Fred F. Fielding saying that certain papers relating to discussion of the friendly-fire shooting "implicate Executive Branch confidentiality interests.""

Pandabonium said...

Resource war front:
Air Force Quietly Building Iraq Presence

They expect to be there long after the Army pulls out in 2009.

They've brought in B-1B bombers, A-10s and F-16s and are bombing the hell out of Iraq every day. Also reinforcing runways and expanding air bases to "last another 5 to 7 years of hard use".

olauspetri said...

I found something quite interesting on the Pakistan-9/11-connection;

"What makes Musharraf an indispensable ally at this point in time? In a nutshell, in the Anglo-American global agenda, larger considerations overlap the day-to-day vicissitudes of the "war on terror". They relate to the "new cold war". Musharraf's stance as an ally can make a big difference. Pakistan, in other words, is regaining the status of a "frontline state" in Anglo-American regional policy. This centrality of Pakistan is comparable to the period under president Zia ul-Haq (1977-88). Militant Islam once again assumes potency in the geopolitics of Central Asia.
In recent months, the US media have reported on the role of Pakistani security agencies in enabling covert US operations aimed at destabilizing Iran. If US Vice President Dick Cheney has his way and a US-Iran military confrontation indeed takes place, Pakistan's role becomes of vital importance to Washington.

To quote prominent Pakistani journalist Ahmed Rashid in the Los Angeles Times recently, "Current and past US officials tell me that Pakistan policy is essentially being run from Cheney's office. The vice president, they say, is close to Musharraf and refuses to brook any criticism of him ... No one at Foggy Bottom [Department of State] seems willing to question Cheney's decisions."

Cheney's interests do not usually go beyond oil and the New American Century project. Even making allowance for Rashid's proximity to Karzai or his well-known antipathy toward Musharraf, it is extraordinary that Cheney has developed such a keen interest in Pakistan. Musharraf is well placed to take a leaf out of Zia's life and times. He can ask the White House for a quid pro quo for his role with regard to Iran and the "new cold war".


Rice Farmer said...

Organic farming could feed the world
Doing away with pesticides and artificial fertilisers would not reduce the world's food supply and could increase food security, say researchers

Chris XVX said...

Good post Barton regarding the next staged terror attack. With all this talk of "gut feelings" and new bin laden tapes, it sounded fishy when I heard them.

Pandabonium said...

Rice Farmer - good article on organic farming - thanks. Interesting how much more productive organic farms in developing countries are.

Rice Farmer said...

Kunstler has called suburbia one of the greatest-ever misallocations of resources, which is certainly correct as far as I can see. With that thought in mind, today I am translating materials describing how poor developing Asian countries are borrowing millions from the World Bank and other institutions to invest in infrastructure to accommodate more motor vehicle traffic! The implications are staggering, to say the least. Even as they take on huge debts to pave over more land for more cars, demand destruction is at work in those same countries. Such colossal waste boggles the mind. I'm wondering if even Kunstler has realized the total extent of misallocation on a global scale.

gaelicgirl said...

Here is a quite interesting article which seems to strongly support Miike's often stated: "It may not be profitable to slow the pace of decline". (I.e., that this is what the powers-that-be believe and will act on in the face of Peak Oil). The author, a Raymond Learsy, recommends gas-rationing as the alternative to that position.

Rice Farmer said...

Biofuel demand makes fried food expensive in Indonesia

Rice Farmer said...

The real price of gas is yet to be seen! Today I stopped at the ag coop to gas up the car (price of gas up 2 yen/liter this week!) and said, "I wonder what will happen when, for example, gas is 200 yen per liter?" And everybody there said, without hesitating, "We'll gas up our cars as we do now because we have no choice." They were just matter-of-factly stating a fundamental truth.

But think about what that means. People's incomes are static now, so paying increasingly high prices for fuel requires that they make cuts elsewhere. So what are they going to cut? Food? People can economize a little on food, but food itself is getting more expensive, so that's a loosing battle. And in fact as energy gets more expensive, EVERYTHING likewise gets more expensive. So at best, economizing just slows the rate at which we fall into a black hole. As I said at the beginning, the real price of gas is yet to be seen!

Enrico said...

Bet you that the USS Enterprise mysteriously sinks due to a "Hezbollah terrorist attack, with support from Iran."

After all, according to wikipedia, "As one of the oldest carriers in the fleet, she is scheduled for decommissioning in 2013-2015."

It sure would be a good way to get that war started with Iran.

Enrico said...

Someone should research this. It looks like the beginning stages of a Gulf of Tonken style attack and is a tad mysterious. It is in regard to the attack and abduction at the Karbala provincial headquarters. The US has already claimed that it was a "Hezbollah attack", but it looks more like CIA to me, I mean, come on...

The attack was perpetrated by "nine to 12 militants posing as an American security team ... [who] traveled in black GMC Suburban vehicles — the type used by U.S. government convoys — had American weapons, wore new U.S. military combat fatigues, and spoke English."[4] According to one Iraqi official, the militant team was led by a blond haired man. The attack occurred as the U.S. military convened a meeting to discuss security for Ashura. About a dozen U.S. troops were inside the compound at the time.[1]

After being waved through the last of three checkpoints manned by Iraqi securtiy forces at around 17:45, the militants parked their (at least) five SUVs[5] near the city's Provisional Joint Coordination Center (PJCC) main building.[1] The attackers' convoy divided upon arrival, with some vehicles parking at the back of the main building where the meeting was taking place and others parking in front. The commandos first used flash grenades to confuse the Americans. They then stormed into a room where Americans and Iraqis were making the security plans, capturing two U.S. soldiers.[6] They pulled two more soldiers out of an armored Humvee at the entrance. One soldier died and three were wounded when a grenade thrown by insurgents exploded in the local police chief's office on an upper floor of the building. Three U.S. Humvees were damaged by separate explosions in the raid.[5] No Iraqi police or soldiers were injured in the raid, as the insurgents specifically targeted the American soldiers in the compound.[6]

bartonbythesea said...

Isis - Good catch on Kissinger. It seems to me that anywhere he surfaces mayhem follows. I guess he is currently advising the Pope, George Bush and now with Putin. How he avoided crimes against humanity escapes me.

Rice Farmer are you anywhere near where the earthquakes hit in Jp?

Rice Farmer said...

No, I am far from the earthquake zone. Didn't feel a thing.

Thanks for your concern.

BTW, I wonder what MCR is up to these days. Working on some secret project?

FTW admin said...

no, no secret projects or missions unless they're secret from me as well. he has lots of details to take care of at the moment but when they're done, i imagine that an update on his status will be forthcoming. he's been v interested in some of the articles y'all have been sending in. thanks for asking, rice farmer.

btw we should also ask pandabonium how he's doing earthquakewise.

Pandabonium said...

Thanks for the concern. I too am far from the earthquake epicenter and didn't feel it either.

Two interesting developments in the UK. First, William Rees-Mogg - a major journalist there - acknowledged peak oil in a Times Online article titled Are These The Last Days of the Oil Age. That has been compared to Walter Cronkite's pronouncement that the Vietnam War was lost.

Another important event is the convening of the "All Party Parliamentary Group on Peak Oil and Gas". There is an interesting interview with MP John Hemming about it HERE>. He is very well informed on the topic.

It's coming rather late, but the looming disaster is at last getting some traction in mainstream media (at least outside the US).

Isis said...

Thanks Barton. I agree with your assessment of Mr. Kissinger's character.

Interesting article in the UK Independent: "If you're in a hole, merge. But is it too late for BP and Shell?"

"At 4.5 million barrels per day, the oil output of a combined Shell-BP would dwarf that of American behemoth ExxonMobil and even major oil-producing countries such as Iran. Some analysts make a positive case for such a merger on the basis of massive economies of scale, claiming it could save $5bn (£2.5bn). But if and when it happens, the real motivation will be far darker: desperation."
(emphasis added)

Rice Farmer said...

If memory serves, Pandabonium is also far from the earthquake zone.

FTW admin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
FTW admin said...


Hello Pandabonium I hadn't noticed that you were also in Jp, is all well? Any local news on the leak at the nuke plant?

Gosh, wouldn't this seem to appear under the heading of bribery?

bartonbythesea said...

U.S.: Afghan Opium Growth Nears Record
U.S. Ambassador Says Afghanistan’s Poppy Crop Is Highest Yet, Despite Eradication Efforts

Pandabonium said...

Japan's nuclear plans in disarray
"TOKYO - Reports of radiation leakages at a nuclear power plant after the Niigata earthquake on Monday have raised widespread public alarm and dealt a devastating blow to the Japanese government's plans to boost the nuclear-power industry, both domestically and abroad."

Read the full article linked above, for details of the damage.

Plan B? There is no Plan B.

trevbus said...

Hey Enrico,

I notice that the USS Kitty Hawk is on a world-wide farewell tour as it is due to be decommissioned, maybe it too could become a target for Iran's Sunburn missiles should the US need a pretext for War.

Enrico said...

trevbus, thanks.

I think this is only a possible scenario among many, but you do agree that it is at least a fairly likely target, given its recent deployment and the fact that the ship is being decommissioned soon. The Sunburn missile you mentioned had fairly recently been purchased by the US (2000), and would certainly make it look like the Iranians attacked.
Good find.

I still think that a major terrorist attack would also be needed, and some Hezbollah link necessary to get the public willing to fight the Iranians. That said, at this point I can see the US just moving forward with a war with Iran, without public support. It would only require a relatively small attack, such as even an unsuccessful attack on the Enterprise as mentioned.

The public doesn't matter to them anymore, nor do Congress. Just start the war, get a terrorist attack a few weeks to months later to get the patriotism ball rolling, and do whatever they damn well please after that.