The John James Newsletter 52
28 March 2015
From a friend:
Another excellent newsletter! Full of good things. You do the best newsletter in Australia, as far as I can see.
“For the first time in my long life the possibility of war with Russia is real,”
Talk summarised here
Washington’s War on Russia
The economic integration of Asia and Europe (including the New Silk Road) offer a clear and present danger for the US whose share of global GDP continues to shrink and whose significance in the world economy continues to decline. To ignore this would present the US with a persistent erosion of power and influence. No one in Washington is prepared to let that happen, which is one reason the US launched its proxy-war in Ukraine.
The big picture:
Nearly every major financial or commodity contract in the world is priced in US dollars. This requires that the entire world not only holds US dollars in order to engage in trade, but to also use the US banking system. This has put the US in a position of unparalleled privilege, and this has afforded the US the opportunity to indebt itself more than any other nation in the history of the world, quintuple its money supply, and wage endless wars overseas with relatively minor consequences.
Monsanto & Dow ‘Probable’ Source of Cancer for Humans
World’s most widely used herbicide ingredient shown to cause a variety of cancers. WHO declares glyphosate should be categorised as a “probable carcinogen”. Report in The Lancet Oncology after a meeting of 17 oncology experts from 11 countries.
A peer-reviewed paper linked glyphosate to a huge increase in 22 chronic diseases across the US, along with a marked decrease in life expectancy. On last decade figures the cost of diabetes and related treatment was $116 billion; obesity $147 billion; cardiovascular diseases and stroke were $475.3 billion while health care expenditures was $2.2 trillion. Serious illness is appearing in increasingly younger cohorts. The US leads the world in deaths from neurological diseases. There have been similar findings for asthma, behaviour and learning problems, and chronic disease in children. Type II diabetes in youth is being called an epidemic. The 25% increase of chronic disease is dramatic.
Lend Lease to pioneer large scale battery storage for new Perth suburb
The pilot project at Alkimos Beach, a sustainable community development north of Perth, will include 1.1MWh of lithium ion battery storage that will service more than 100 homes with rooftop solar panels. The trial will test different tariff options and retail models and services, energy efficiency devices, gas-boosted solar hot water is expected to start in 2016.
Solar plane crosses India
Solar Impulse, the solar-powered plane attempting to fly around the world, has completed the first leg in a two-hop journey from India to Myanmar.on its circumnavigation of the globe.
5 Surprising Facts About Nigeria’s Economy
After a decade of flat growth, new policies to promote manufacturing have lead to an increase in the last three years. Nigeria’s film industry produces more than 50 movies every week and employs more than a million people, making it the largest single employer in the country after agriculture.
Abbott’s breathtaking shift in economic management
Rather than build relationships and find compromises, the Government whinges and complains about the “feral” Senate.
Keep it in the ground
Join more than 140,000 to urge the world’s two biggest charitable funds to move their money out of fossil fuels
Washington Misses Bigger Picture of New Chinese Investment Bank
Many have decided to join the IB from frustration with Republicans who have refused to ratify a major reform package designed to give developing countries, including China, a little more voting power on the boards of the IMF and the World Bank. The G20 proposed this reform in 2010, and it doesn’t even reduce Washington’s voting power as it retains effective veto. The US is the only G20 member that has failed to ratify the reforms, effectively blocking their implementation. China’s move to create the new development bank is part of the price being paid for that obstruction.
Nearly every major financial or commodity contract in the world is priced in US dollars. This requires that the entire world not only holds US dollars in order to engage in trade, but to also use the US banking system. This has put the US in a position of unparalleled privilege, and has afforded the US the opportunity to indebt itself more than any other nation in the history of the world, quintuple its money supply, and wage endless wars overseas with relatively minor consequences.
Numbers Show China’s Coal Appetite Has Peaked
A structural slowdown that began last year when the average coal price received in 2014 dropped almost 10%.
US Shale Gas Exports Are ‘Dead in the Water’
Reserves of US shale gas have been “vastly overestimated” because an SEC rule enabled companies to expand their definition in order to borrow more money. Considerably money has been borrowed on shales on assets that don’t exist or will never be commercially viable. By comparison, the solar industry is on the rise creating more new jobs than oil and gas combined in the past three years. Solar stocks have been outperforming oil and gas stocks.
Is Ukraine a proxy First Strike?
Is US fear of projected Russian weaponry the real cause of Ukraine crisis?
Future Russian army could deploy anywhere in the world – in 7 hours
Russia’s new Armata tank on Army 2015 shopping list
Russian ‘ABM killer’ intercontinental missile to enter service in 2016
Russia’s stealth ‘black hole’ submarine prepares for 4,000km deep water trials
Russian expert: Saudi Arabia may suffer defeat in Yemen
“The military campaign will be absolutely unsuccessful for the Saudis. The Army of Saudi Arabia is emptiness behind beautiful gear. This army is inferior to the Yemenis in combat readiness, it has never fought anyone in its history.”
Saudi Arabia’s Big Gamble
With a new king and a young, untested defence minister, at stake is nothing less than the kingdom’s position of leadership in the Arab world. The events in Yemen are not peripheral. They are central to the balance of power within the Arab world, to tensions within Islam, and are at the core of fears in the global oil market.
Pentagon loses track of $500 million in weapons, equipment given to Yemen
With Yemen in turmoil the US is unable to monitor the whereabouts of small arms, ammunition, night-vision goggles, patrol boats, vehicles and other supplies donated by the US.
The Strategy Behind Israel’s Attack on Iran and Hizballah
Israel’s claims of an imminent threat of Hizballah attack are not credible, but wants to subdue the Lebanese militia so it has a free hand to manipulate the Syrian battlefield to its advantage
US Declassifies Document Revealing Israel’s Nuclear Program
For the first time the US has officially confirmed that Israel is a nuclear power.
Iran has signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and submits to international inspections as the treaty requires. Israel has never signed the NPT and therefore does not submit to inspections.
The melting of Antarctica was already bad. It just got worse
We may have irreversibly destabilized the great Totten Glacier. It is melting fast. As it holds back a vast catchment of ice when it goes and allows the more vulnerable portions to flow into the ocean, it could raise sea levels by more than 11 feet. Northern Hemisphere residents and Americans should take note — when the bottom of the world loses vast amounts of ice, those living closer to its top get more sea level rise than the rest of the planet, thanks to the law of gravity.
Are superfast trains speeding down the tracks?
In theory running trains through vacuum tubes, and raising them off the tracks using existing maglev technology, drag could be reduced to near zero. These trains could travel at over 1,000mph. Dr Deng Zigang has built such a system as a trial.
Listening to classical music modulates genes that are responsible for brain functions
New information about the molecular genetic background of music perception and evolution may give insights about the molecular mechanisms underlying music therapy.
In the city of Ferguson, nearly everyone is a wanted criminal.
In a city of 21,000, 16,000 have outstanding arrest warrants, meaning they are actively wanted by the police. Nearly everyone is wanted for something. This refers to individuals, rather than cases, so people with many cases are not counted multiple times. In 2013 there were 1.5 offences for every man, woman and child, meaning the city has more wanted criminals than people.
NATO Knew Its Intervention In Libya Would Create Chaos And Aid al-Qaeda
At the time, NATO military leader Admiral James Stavridis, denied that opposition to the secular leftist Libyan leader Muamar Gaddafi was dominated by rightwing Islamist theocrats, calling the bulk of the opposition forces “responsible men and women.” But Canadian intelligence was clear-eyed about the nature of the Libyan opposition.
Deadlock over Greek debt crisis could play into Russia’s hands
As Alexis Tsipras courts both Angela Merkel and Vladimir Putin, diplomats fear the country’s economic woes are spiralling into a potential geopolitical threat. As speculation over Athens’ ability to remain in the euro grows, there are rising fears that Moscow sees Greece as a potential Trojan horse.
Middle Income Nations Home to Half the World’s Hungry
In Bangladesh “reductions in open defecation contributed to large declines in the number of stunted children.Children living in places where open defecation had been reduced were taller than children in neighboring West Bengal, India, where open defecation is still common.”
Salaries of 13 major world leaders
Jerusalem at boiling point of polarisation and violence
The city is more divided than 1967. A leaked report describes the “vicious cycle of violence … increasingly threatening the viability of the two-state solution”, which has been stoked by the continuation of “systematic” settlement building in sensitive areas of Jerusalem, the tension over the Haram al-Sharif/Temple Mount complex and heavy-handed policing and home demolitions.
UN Warns World Could have 40% Water Shortfall by 2030
Many underground water reserves are already running low, while rainfall patterns are predicted to become more erratic with climate change. As the world’s population grows to an expected 9 billion by 2050, more groundwater will be needed for farming, industry and for personal consumption.
To Solve California’s Water Crisis, We Must Change the Nation’s Food System
Yellowstone Supervolcano the Most Dangerous In America Is Roaring To Life
In September, 130 earthquakes hit Yellowstone over the course of a single week. Professor Bob Smith says that he has never seen anything like this in the 53 years that he has been watching Yellowstone
Dancing With the Le Pens
According to polls, the Socialists will be lucky to win 20% of the vote on Sunday, with the FN poised to win 31 percent and the UMP about 29 percent. These two parties will face off in the second round a week later after the elimination of the Socialists.
China’s Weapons of Mass Consumption
China is now the world’s third-largest arms exporter, having overtaken France and Germany, which trail behind Russia and the US.
A map of all the underwater cables that connect the internet
Includes details of the Pacific and Indian Oceans as well.
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