Daily Digest

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Daily Digest 7/16 - Global Auto Sales Collapse Approaching, Stepping Out Of The System

Monday, July 16, 2012, 10:29 AM


"Trade-Off": A Study In Global Systemic Collapse (Thomas C.)

Think of the attached 78-page paper as Nassim Taleb meets Edward Lorenz meets Malcom Gladwell meets Arthur Tansley meets Herman Muller meets Werner Heisenberg meets Hyman Minsky meets William Butler Yeats, and the resultant group spends all night drinking absinthe and smoking opium, while engaging in illegal debauchery in the 5th sub-basement of the Moulin Rouge circa 1890.

Global Collapse In Auto Sales Coming Up (Chris M.)

In response to my post Plunging New Orders Suggest Global Recession Has Arrived I received a couple of interesting emails from readers, one from the US, the other from an employee of the world's largest automotive parts manufacturer.

Stepping out of the system (Dave R.)

To be clear, there is no actual currency or scrip exchanged. Credits are tracked via an open-source community banking software system called Cyclos. Katarina, for example, banks her credits from selling jam to buy staple foods such as eggs and fresh vegetables that are offered through the network.

The barter idea is catching on in a number of cities in Greece during these lean economic times, returning communities to a centuries old system but with a digital twist. And it's not just in Greece. The global economic downturn has created renewed interest worldwide in alternative economic models.

David Brooks' Fantasyland: Corrupt Elites are just One Epiphany Away from Being Ideal Reformers (Jaime)

In any well-functioning system, the people who are put in charge of reform are never the people who were compromised enough to allow the system to be corrupted. Just as you do not send in the same elite surgeon to correct what he or she did to botch a surgery, you do not send in a corrupt CEO to correct what he or she did to drive the company into the ground. And you do not appoint advisors and central bankers who were architects of the system that failed. If you want real reform, you send in someone who has no need to protect his or her failed legacy.

Troubled New York Hospitals Forgo Coverage for Malpractice (VeganD)

Some have saved money to cover their liabilities, but others have used up their malpractice reserves, meaning that any future awards or settlements could come at the expense of patients’ care, and one hospital has closed its obstetric practice, in part out of fear of lawsuits.


U.S. Declares Drought-Stricken States to Be Largest Natural Disaster Ever (safewrite)

On Thursday the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) declared
over 1,000 counties across 26 states to be natural disaster areas. This year
has been the one of the worst years since the 1930s for drought in America.
Drought, along with extreme heat, has prompted the USDA to declare these
territories the largest natural disaster area in American history.

Using Bacteria to Increase Efficiency of Biofuel Production (OPA)

Similar microbial fuel cells have been investigated before. However, maximum energy recoveries from corn stover, a common feedstock for biofuels, hover around 3.5 percent. Reguera’s platform, despite the energy invested in chemical pretreatment of the corn stover, averaged 35 to 40 percent energy recovery just from the fermentation process, says Reguera, an AgBioResearch scientist who co-authored the paper with Allison Spears, a Michigan State graduate student.

Article suggestions for the Daily Digest can be sent to [email protected]. All suggestions are filtered by the Daily Digest team and preference is given to those that are in alignment with the message of the Crash Course and the "3 Es."


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Three by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard

Here's the Google news search link. Check out the last three, from July 11, 12 and 13.

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Largest Public Pension Fund Earns Dismal 1 Percent

"The nation's largest public pension fund reported a dismal 1 percent return on its investments, a figure far short of projections that will likely add pressure on California's state and local governments to contribute more, officials said Monday.

The California Public Employees' Retirement System reported its returns for the fiscal year that ended June 30. The 1 percent return is well below its projected annual return of 7.5 percent.

"The last 12 months were a challenging period for all investors as the ongoing European debt crisis and slowing global economic growth increased market volatility and reduced equity returns," said chief investment officer Joe Dear. "It's a clear reminder that we must remain focused on performance, risk and internal controls in today's financial environment."

Dear said the fund was most impacted by a minus-7 percent return on global equities. Half the pension's assets are in equities, he said.

CalPERS, which has yet to recover from the recession, runs a $234 billion pension system for more than 1.6 million state employees, school employees and local government workers.

The preliminary returns reported Monday were even lower than the state's teacher pension fund, which earned 1.8 percent from investments.

Dear said the returns would result in increased pension contributions from the state, school districts and municipalities, most of which are already financially stressed.

He said the fund's long term 7.5 percent target remains "realistic" but noted that recent returns have been the lowest in a generation. For the last five years, CalPERS earned just 0.1 percent. Over 20 years, the fund earned 7.73 percent."

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Moody's downgrades ratings on 13 Italian banks

Moody's downgrades ratings on 13 Italian banks (This headline just came up under Marketwatch)

As more info comes up the stories should show up here.


Here are the details.


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Further to Chris' story on Global Collapse In Auto Sales......

Ford Australia is preparing to lay off hundreds of workers in Victoria.


The company will shed 440 jobs from its plants at Broadmeadows at Geelong.

It is understood the job losses will be evenly split between the two sites and will take place between now and November.

The last few years have seen Ford and its competitor Holden struggle with falling sales, sparking serious concerns about the future viability of Australia's car manufacturing sector.

The decision to cut jobs comes after the State and Federal Governments gave the company a multi-million dollar bail-out in January to secure its presence in Australia until 2016.

The company will brief workers and union members at the two Victorian sites shortly.

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How Bernanke will cause the next crash before 2014

How Bernanke will cause the next crash before 2014 (Marc Faber)

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Climate Change - The Truth

What a pity that climate change is all a massive hoax invented by climate scientists simply to increase research funds. Were that not the case, then it might be worth listening to those same scientists when they tell us that the poles are warming two or three times faster than the rest of the globe. Forgetting, of course, two or three times zero is zero. (With maths like that, it is a good job they don't run the economy.) 

But, if we pretend that it not a hoax, then apparently droughts and floods etc. are only to be expected because the jet stream tends to meander and get stuck in some unusual locations. In the U.K. this has had the opposite effect to the drought and sizzling temperatures in America. They have had nothing but rain pissitively possing down and below average temperatures. But, of course, we have to face reality and not pretend. I guess that means we will have to look elsewhere for the cause of all this extreme weather. And it goes without saying that any action to try and stop global warming would be a complete waste of time. I mean, what is the point of fighting something that is simply pure invention on the part of a bunch of crooked scientists?

Heaven knows how climate scientists manage to look themselves in the mirror. They spend all their time studying the climate and its forcings. You would think that they of all people would know just how daft it is to expect the globe to warm simply because we treat it like a greenhouse plant. Obviously not, or they would not keep crying wolf about how bad it is going to get. No, we can forget the opinion of climate scientists. For a really authentic take on the subject of global warming (a.k.a. climate change) ask any Republican politician, they are obviously the ones who really understand global warming.

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