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Showing posts from September 16, 2016

Climate change 'significant and direct' threat to U.S. military: reports

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[Don't worry! It's all a fiction created by the Chinese to hurt American business! Vote Trump! *RON*]
By Idrees Ali, Reuters, 14 September 2016
The effects of climate change endanger U.S. military operations and could increase the danger of international conflict, according to three new documents endorsed by retired top U.S. military officers and former national security officials.

"There are few easy answers, but one thing is clear: the current trajectory of climatic change presents a strategically-significant risk to U.S. national security, and inaction is not a viable option," said a statement published on Wednesday by the Center for Climate and Security, a Washington-based think tank.

It was signed by more than a dozen former senior military and national security officials, including retired General Anthony Zinni, former commander of the U.S. Central Command, and retired Admiral Samuel Locklear, head of the Pacific Command …

Trudeau Said to Plan Pipeline Approval, Favor Kinder Morgan

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[There's democracy, then there's pipeline democracy. Little Potato, Stephen Harper's mini-Me, strikes again. *RON*]

Josh Wingrove, Bloomberg, 13 September 2016

PM set to green-light at least one major project in first termCanada aims to balance economic and environmental concerns Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau plans to approve at least one new oil pipeline project in his first term, with Kinder Morgan Inc.’s Trans Mountain expansion to the Pacific Coast the most likely candidate, people familiar with his plans said.

The prime minister is seeking to strengthen environmental standards and build confidence in new regulatory rules while also stoking growth in Canada’s sluggish economy by backing a pipeline. Trudeau therefore plans to neither approve all the projects under consideration nor reject them all, according to the people who spoke on condition of anonymity because the discussions are private.

Trudeau faces a series of high-…

No surrender

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[The arrest of journalists by Erdogan in Turkey. And democratically elected mayors: Turkey removes 24 mayors over 'PKK links'. *RON*]
Can Dundar, Time Literary Supplement, 13 August 2016

A single letter separates cesaret (courage) and esaret (captivity) in Turkish – an eloquent kinship in a land where every courageous act risks imprisonment. Before the abolition of the death penalty, Turkish judges traditionally broke their pens after passing a capital sentence, a ritual that ostensibly prevented the pen from signing another such order. There is a sense in which the gesture might also be read as a deterrent to writers: do not wade into such perilous waters. Nevertheless, we may reasonably suggest that throughout history, more pens would have been broken by judges than writers.

Last November, I was accused of “espionage” and “divulging state secrets” over a story I had run earlier in the year in the newspaper of which I was then the Editor…

Hundreds of nations agree to domestic trade ban for ivory

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[Should we allow that there be a market for everything? The photo of that storage room is going to stick with me for a long while. The agreement is voluntary, but conservationists are hopeful. *RON*]

Natasha Geiling, ThinkProgress, 12 September 2016

After days of tense negotiations, nations and environmental groups called for an end to domestic ivory trading as the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) congress wrapped up in Hawaii on Saturday.

Nearly all of the 217 nation states that belong to the IUCN, as well as 1,000 environmental groups, backed a statement calling for countries to end ivory trading within their borders as “a matter of urgency,” according to the Guardian.

The move is an attempt by conservationists to staunch the killing of elephants for their tusks. A recent census of African elephant populations found that between 2007 and 2014, African elephant populations declined by 30 percent. Past estimates wager that Afri…

Savings for a rainy day, or upcoming election?

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[The right hand giveth, but the left hand taketh far more away. See also: Bus passes for disabled British Columbians went up by $579 and things will only get worse, and Groups rally to save Vancouver, Richmond schools as trustees consider closuresNew report shows 117 B.C. foster children were placed in hotels. What heartless vote-grubbing ideology guides a government to set a goal of having a billion dollar surplus instead of providing services to citizens? Then using an election to feed a small fraction of that back to the public to get re-elected? *RON*]
Vaughn Palmer, Vancouver Sun, 15 September 2016

VICTORIA — A beaming Finance Minister Mike de Jong released the most positive update on provincial finances in many years Thursday, just in time for the coming election.

Revenues up this year and the next two. Spending room increased by hundreds of millions of dollars. Bottom line pointing to big surpluses over the three years.

Oil Bankruptcies Leave Lenders With ‘Catastrophic’ Recovery Rate

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[Oh dear! How ever will the banksters make up for such a loss?! Hint: Hide your wallet and keep your cash in a mattress. *RON*]

Rebecca Penty, Bloomberg, 12 September 2016

Rate of 21% in 2015 compares to average of 59% previouslyBankruptcies so far this year are double last year’s total U.S. oil bankruptcies haven’t been this “catastrophic” for lenders in a long time, in what may be the worst bust of any industry this century, according to Moody’s Investors Service.

Creditors are recovering an average 21 percent of what they lent, compared with about 59 percent in past decades, the credit-rating agency said Monday in a report that looks into lending to 15 exploration and production companies that filed for bankruptcy protection in 2015. That may be on par with, or worse than, the telecommunications industry collapse in 2001 and 2002, the study led by David Keisman said. High-yield bonds recovered a mere 6 percent, compared to 30 percent in previous…