Daily Digest

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Daily Digest 7/15 - Good News Friday: Paying Farmers To Go Organic, Are Walkers Smarter Than Drivers?

Friday, July 15, 2016, 11:18 AM

This is Good News Friday, where we find some good economic, energy, and environmental news and share it with PP readers. Please send any positive news to [email protected] with subject header "Good News Friday." We will save and post weekly. Enjoy!

Economy

Are Walkers Smarter Than Drivers? (jdargis)

Christopher Leinberger, professor at the George Washington University School of Business and one of the study’s authors, says that walkable urban places "have a much higher propensity to have highly educated people — about one third higher than drivable metro areas, like Orlando, Tampa, and Phoenix."

NASA’s Solar System program is just about the greatest thing ever (jdargis)

Then there are the Martian landers. Eight of NASA's nine missions to the surface of Mars have been successful, with only its Mars Polar Lander failing to safely reach the surface. By contrast, four of five Soviet landers failed to reach Mars safely, and the one that did, Mars 3 in 1971, survived for only about 15 seconds. No other nation or agency has landed on Mars. Since NASA's last high-profile failure in Solar System exploration, the polar lander in 1999, Japan, China, Russia, and the United Kingdom have all lost various orbiters and landers sent to the Martian system. (In the meantime NASA put Spirit, Opportunity, Phoenix, and Curiosity on the Martian surface).

Brexit Means You Might Be Able to Afford a Scottish Castle (or Two) (jdargis)

The immediate aftermath of June’s shock Brexit result saw the pound crash to lows not seen in 30 years against the dollar, which means investing in prime pieces of Scotland's history just got that much more affordable (for Americans, at least). Although the prospect of a second Scottish referendum on independence may temper the future, here are seven castles to dream on now.

Sticking germy fingers in your mouth may give you the upper hand on health (jdargis)

Lynch and colleagues examined data from the Dunedin Multidisciplinary Health and Development Study, which had been tracking 1,037 kids born in Dunedin, New Zealand, between 1972 and 1973. In that study, parents were surveyed on their kids’ thumb-sucking and nail-biting ways when the kids were 5, 7, 9, and 11 years old. Most of the kids were also given skin-prick allergy tests at ages 13 and 32. Those tests looked for responses to common allergens, such as dust mites, grass pollen, cats, dogs, horses, wool, and mundane molds. The researchers also collected information on other factors that may influence allergy development, including breastfeeding, cat and dog ownership, parental smoking and allergies, crowded living conditions, and socioeconomic status.

Israel's Wildlife Hospital opens first-ever blood bank for birds (jdargis)

"We already have 16 samples in our blood bank," Smit said. "And now we're considering taking a blood sample from every bird we treat, to aid in the saving of the next bird that would come."

The blood bank has already helped save a common buzzard that was brought to the hospital in serious condition. The blood transfusion the bird received helped it recover, and it has already been released back to nature.

The EPA Once Said This Was The Dirtiest City In America. Now It’s One Of Our Greenest (jdargis)

Adding to the bikeshare, the city is launching an electric car-sharing program at the end of the summer. Twenty Nissan Leafs will be available for hourly rental, and the car-charging courts will also be available to any resident with an electric or hybrid vehicle to charge their own car for free. The cost of the electricity to run the cars will be offset by three solar power generation sites currently being installed. “This car share program touches on public health ideals,” says Stefanie deOlloqui, an environmental health specialist with Prova Group. “Zero emission vehicles promote clean air. Increased transportation choice allows people to access new parts of their community. Being part of this movement, makes people feel more connected. It is all about improving quality of life.”

Paying Farmers to Go Organic, Even Before the Crops Come In (jdargis)

But the consumer demand is accelerating the conversion process. Sales of organic products grew 11 percent last year to $43.3 billion, or roughly four times the growth in sales of food products over all, according to the Organic Trade Association. Sales would have been even higher had supply, particularly in organic dairy and grains, kept up with demand.

Meet a Woman Who Keeps 500 Plants in Her Brooklyn Apartment (jdargis)

Her apartment is an attempt to cram a country house into a Brooklyn apartment. None of that is really possible in the city, but Oakes does her best: a vermiculture kit beneath the kitchen sink, a compost bin, LED lighting systems, a sub-irrigation system for certain plants, and plants, plants everywhere. Succulents line the bathroom. An old sled on which her pots and pans are hung also include low-light-tolerant philodendrons.

Gold & Silver

Click to read the PM Daily Market Commentary: 7/14/16

Provided daily by the Peak Prosperity Gold & Silver Group

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."

18 Comments

saxplayer00o1's picture
saxplayer00o1
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Japan may be on route for a "soft" form of helicopter money

Japan may be on route for a "soft" form of helicopter money

Reuters-4 hours ago

In the past week, Japanese markets have seen hyped-up speculation that the government will resort to using what's called "helicopter money", where a central ..

Australia's Central Bank Would Mix Stimulus Tools in Extreme ...

Bloomberg-19 hours ago

Australia's central bank has studied the examples of unorthodox policy conducted by its peers, and would favor a multi-pronged stimulus if economic conditions ..

 

Massive Stimulus Keeps China GDP Steady in Second Quarter

Wall Street Journal - ‎13 hours ago‎
BEIJING—Chinese growth held steady at 6.7% in the second quarter after a flood of stimulus in the first quarter lent at least temporary stability to a slumping economy. The growth report beat forecasts after prior data showed weaker manufacturing ...

China's bad-loans ratio reaches 1.81 pct in Q2, highest ...

Reuters-5 hours ago
... which handle distressed debt from banks, to increase their ability to offload batches of ... Outstanding bank loans grew to 106.69 trillion yuan ($15.97 trillion) at ...

China Urges Banks to Step Up Risk Controls as Bad Loans Increase

Bloomberg-6 hours ago

... controls and safeguard financial stability as the nation's soured debt rose. ... China approved an initial quota of 50 billion yuan of NPL-backed securities for the .

'Take a sledgehammer' to Brexit risks with new stimulus, says Bank of England's chief economist

Telegraph.co.uk - ‎6 hours ago‎
Policymakers will need to deliver a “collective response” in the wake of the Brexit vote, including fresh central bank stimulus, the Bank of England's chief economist has warned, in his first public comments on the matter since last month's referendum.

It's not just Brexit, Abenomics is also driving gold sales in Japan

CNBC-14 hours ago

The surge in demand for gold comes as Japanese investors were already nervous about negative interest rates introduced by the Bank of Japan earlier this year ..

White House: 2016 budget deficit to register $600B, increase of $162B

Washington Times - ‎1 hour ago‎
From left: Sherillyn Ifill, president and director-counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, and Terry Cunningham, president of the International Association of Chiefs of Police, look to President Barack Obama as he speaks to media at ...

Treasury to Sell $102 Billion in Debt

Wall Street Journal-Jul 14, 2016
The Treasury Department will auction $102 billion in securities next week, comprising $65 billion in new debt and $37 billion in previously sold debt. Details (all ...

Borenstein: Bad CalPERS earnings worsen $93 billion taxpayer debt

The Mercury News-15 hours ago
... $93 billion, more than four times what it was a decade earlier. Since then there have been two consecutive fiscal years of poor earnings. The debt is more now ...

$8 billion dollars -- That's Illinois' expected debt this year

Quad-Cities Online - ‎17 hours ago‎
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — The state of Illinois' spending will outstrip what it brings in by nearly $8 billion this year despite a stopgap budget agreement last month, according to a government analysis first obtained Thursday by The Associated Press.

State Bills Could Hit $10-billion

Alton Daily News - ‎10 hours ago‎
... the year could exceed $10 billion. Comptroller Leslie Munger said today the recently passed stopgap budget is helping pay some bills, but it's not balanced and the state's cash flow is still extremely limited. Munger said her office is prioritizing ...

European banks face €30bn-€40bn capital bill after Brexit

Financial Times-11 hours ago
German banks alone would need an extra €10bn of UK capital and a similar amount of debt that can be bailed in, BCG said. The researchers put the capital bill ...

Metro Faces Yawning Deficit As Budget Is Squeezed From Both Sides

WAMU 88.5-4 hours ago

Metro's financial figures are going in the wrong direction. The transit authority will face an operating deficit of $1.1 billion in 2020 if expenses continue to outstrip .

'When your health insurance is bigger than the mortgage ...

Dallas Morning News-16 hours ago

In Texas, about 1.2 million people buy insurance on HealthCare.gov, and many will face steep increases in premiums for 2017. The reason: Blue Cross Blue ..

In post-Chavez Venezuela, health care ails, food is scarce and crime ...

PBS NewsHour-16 hours ago
Venezuela's hospitals are crumbling and health care system is in shambles. Kidnappers prey on citizens whose families are rich enough to pay ransom and the ...

Drought makes Lake Mead drop to lowest levels in history

WQAD.com - ‎5 hours ago‎
New imagery released by NASA shows the effect of extreme drought on Lake Mead. The lake is actually a reservoir, and is the largest in the United States. It was created with the construction of the Hoover Dam in the 1930s. 16 consecutive years of ...
Tall's picture
Tall
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What we can do

"...massive transformations in energy systems, government, and the economy ... are exceedingly unlikely to occur absent struggle and social action. Powerful interests invested in the extractive economy will not give up their advantages willingly. As Frederick Douglass eloquently said, “Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will.” "

http://www.resilience.org/stories/2016-07-14/what-we-as-a-people-can-do

 

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Gee Whiz Finding: Making bricks with bacteria

This is kind of cool. 

A chemist is making bricks by replicating the process that coral organisms use to enzymatically form calcium carbonate at room temperature.

Apparently, both making bricks and making cement are tremendously energy intensive requiring very high temperatures, around 1400 degrees, sustained for several days.  This gives both brick and cement manufacturing very high carbon foot prints.  It also limits production location to specific plants, which may be far from the construction site.

A chemist at a startup called BioMason, has found a procedure to use bacteria to catalyze the formation of calcium carbonate.  This process was inspired by the coral microorganisms that enzymatically make the calcium carbonate structures we know as coral reefs.  The major importance is that it is a room temperature process.  Because of this, bricks (and cement) could potentially be created at or near the construction site.

Gravel aggregate of any kind, is placed in a mold and a slurry of these "bugs" and nutrients is poured in:

5 days later, bricks.

This video is from the bioMason company home page and is the best summary.

http://biomason.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/BioMASONSeq7-Mobile.mp4

Another version.

Another similar type of effort, Futuris, to make cement enymatically at room temperature.

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Good/inspiring article on Chattanooga TN, JDargis

Thanks!

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Goodbye Rule of Law

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We're all in this together

As a UK subject, I can't say that the prospect of more of the country being sold off to people from overseas really brightened up my Friday.  What next for Good News Friday - "War in Syria makes holidays there cheaper"?

 

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We're all in this together

As a UK subject, I can't say that the prospect of more of the country being sold off to people from overseas really brightened up my day.  What next for Good News Friday - "War in Syria makes holidays there cheaper"?

I also want to add that this is a fabulous website, thank you for all the great content!

 

 

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Game Changing

T2H,

The arrogance and indifference of Lynch is stunning. An attorney general not caring if something is legal or illegal... wow! If this is the pattern going forward then you might say 'goodbye hope' as well. This is game changing stuff.

Thanks for sharing,

Luke

Edit: Just to extend the point, if Hillary rises to power and is not held accountable by the law then she is essentially a monarch for the period she is in office. As, hey, that is the privilege of kings and queens - you can't be tried under your own law. Although I'm guessing that won't be news to most here.

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Luke Moffat wrote: The
Luke Moffat wrote:

The arrogance and indifference of Lynch is stunning. An attorney general not caring if something is legal or illegal... wow! If this is the pattern going forward then you might say 'goodbye hope' as well.

You assume it's free will working there, but what if Lynch is a captive of the system. Lets assume that lynch decided to prosecute, what would have happened? Imagine the consequences for Lynch, assume the risk that Lynch would have faced, and then all the decisions made after that become obvious. If you said Lynch was broken in spirit, and is now complying that might be more apt, assume Lynch is just like Winston Smith in George Orwells 1984. Even if she is an active participant the outcome is the same, she either embraces the madness or is destroyed by it.

It's a bitter pill, and very sad either way.

 

 

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Capture or Contempt?
nigel wrote:

Imagine the consequences for Lynch, assume the risk that Lynch would have faced, and then all the decisions made after that become obvious. If you said Lynch was broken in spirit, and is now complying that might be more apt, assume Lynch is just like Winston Smith in George Orwells 1984. Even if she is an active participant the outcome is the same, she either embraces the madness or is destroyed by it.

Nigel,

My impression of Lynch's 'performance' was one of contempt rather than state capture.

To me, Lynch didn't appear to be broken, distressed or confused or fighting some internal moral demons. She just appeared not to care. Over something she should care a great deal about.

You could well be right, that she is indeed captured by the state. Or that certain issues were 'explained' to her, along with career implications. Bill might even have put it in those terms, "embrace the madness or be destroyed by it". But I don't think so. My guess is that a deal was struck, I don't think that you can just go and threaten the attorney general - perhaps I'm being naive. To me, a deal to ensure a handsome retirement policy seems the more likely scenario - much like those which bankers and incumbent Federal Reserve Chairpeople make. "Remember, just look the other way, we'll handle the rest."

All the same, these words no longer mean anything;

Loretta Lynch wrote:

I -- LORETTA LYNCH: I WILL SUPPORT AND DEFEND THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES AGAINST ALL ENEMIES FOREIGN AND DOMESTIC. I WILL BEAR TRUE FAITH AND ALLEGIANCE TO THE SAME. I TAKE THIS OBLIGATION FREELY WITHOUT ANY MENTAL RESERVATIONS OR PURPOSE OF EVASION. I WILL WELL AND FAITHFULLY DISCHARGE THE DUTIES OF THE OFFICE ON WHICH I'M ABOUT TO ENTER. SO HELP ME GOD. 

Video from 12:20

 

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Re: Goodbye Rule of Law

For some reason I kept thinking of Stalin.

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Goodbye Rule of Law

Lynch was just following orders.  Apparently Hillary is perfectly acceptable to the powers that be.  Many Neocons now openly support her candidacy, the bankers will also come around and before you know it nothing changes.  The Democratic platform cannot even reflect the wishes of the vast majority of Democrats and openly oppose the TPP and TTIP. Hillary will, of course, "see the light" and come to support the trade agreements quickly, if elected. 

Trump may have tripped on the truth when he claimed recently, "Everything is rigged."   George Carlin was a prophet, it turns out.

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New Oaths

As a bit of fun, and because I’m feeling a bit peeved this afternoon, I’ve re-written the oath;

“I – Loretta Lynch – will undermine and corrupt the constitution of the United States. I shall, where I am able, facilitate and encourage the capture of the state by known criminals, both foreign and domestic. I bear true faith and allegiance to the same. I take this obligation freely without any moral reservations or purpose of justice. I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I’m about to enter. So God help YOU.”

You might argue that it’s not my fight (being in the UK) but I worry about all the wars Hillary will embroil the West in.

Perhaps, I'm being unfair singling out Lynch, I suspect many more could faithfully recite the same verse.

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Loretta Lynch and the law.. Thanks T2H

Excellent video T2H.. in the first minute, you hear Lynch say the word, "reason, or intent".  That is the game... it's the weasel word that does not have a place in the law.  

My favorite lawyer and liberty commentator John Titus talks about this point in this recent piece that was picked up by Dave Kranzler;

  http://investmentresearchdynamics.com/hillary-clinton-could-get-away-wit...

.....2. Gross Negligence Is the Legal Standard for Ordinary People; for Hillary Clinton, the Legal Standard Is “Intent to Violate Laws”

By the express terms of 18 U.S.C. 793(f), criminal culpability exists where there is a finding of “gross negligence.” But James Comey informed us that the legal standard is different for Hillary Clinton and her coterie: “we did not find clear evidence that Secretary Clinton or her colleagues intended to violate laws governing the handling of classified information”

This is how you and I are being played.  Wake up. 

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A mess indeed

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Expect An October Surprise

I wrote this on another thread How To Prepare For War: Comment #2, but the link and content are still very relevant:

Martin Armstrong posted this a couple of days ago:

https://www.armstrongeconomics.com/international-news/north_america/americas-current-economy/russia-has-hillarys-emails-hacked-democrats-server/

Russia has reportedly hacked Hillary’s server. The energy magazine Oilprice.com reported that Russian intelligence informed Western intelligence agencies that the government in Moscow is now planning to publish the emails from Hillary Clinton. If this proves to be true, then this will confirm that she placed national security second to her personal self-interest.

If Russia releases e-mails that they hacked from Hillary's ""secure"" server, would that be considered a war crime? If it weren't so potentially devastating, it would be simply Hillaryous.

Grover

If I were advising Putin, I'd suggest releasing a quarter of the e-mails each week of October. I'd characterize the e-mails as least to most damaging to Hillary's chances to get elected. Release the least damaging e-mails the first week in October. The shock that she allowed her e-mails to be hacked will be priceless. Then release the next most damaging each of the next 2 weeks and finally release the ones that make her look like she's got her hands in the cookie jar the last week.

Perhaps enough of the dyed-in-the-wool voters who would normally vote for her will be disgusted and vote for an alternative party candidate. Of course, I may be placing too much faith in humanity.

Grover

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Yeah, but...

...the nice thing about being the elite's chosen one in rigged elections is that you don't have to worry about pesky concerns like what voters think, or how they vote.  You just win anyway!  Yay!!!

In the same way Hillary didn't have to be concerned about a pesky thing like being held accountable for breaking the laws associated with having classified e-mails on a private server, she doesn't have to worry about petty issues like what we plebeians think or how we vote.  Unlike the BREXIT vote, we have electronic voting systems ripe for manipulation, and producing non-verifiable [or at least non-verified] results.  My opinion is that Hillary is a done-deal; we the people just haven't quite completed the charade of a "free election" to get our fictional lives caught-up with that result. 

The only exception I can envision is that if Hillary somehow becomes such damaged goods in popular opinion that the elite think having her in office would hurt their agenda.  E.g., maybe her negative popularity starts to seriously impact their ability to sustain the fiction of free elections, which in turn could impair their ability to keep the masses pacified and easy to manipulate. In that case, one of the options I've read that might occur is for a quick switcheroo, replacing Hillary at the last minute with some other more palatable elite puppet who can more believably "win". 

Then there is always the tried-and-true option of a major disruptive event that distracts the populace, and allows the pre-chosen candidate to consolidate power. 

 

 

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Expect Surprises

pinecarr,

I actually feel sorry for whichever sot ends up being elected. There are too many chickens coming home to roost and there aren't any palatable solutions. Since the media likes to pin the tail on the scapegoat, whoever wins will become the modern day Herbert Hoover (as far as the blame game goes.)

Nothing would surprise me about the upcoming election. I believe that Putin has Hillary's e-mails and that he will be true to his word and release them. He doesn't want another neocon in that office if he can help it. I'm not sure how it will be perceived by the Hillary supporters. Will they think that Hillary lied to them, or will they think that Putin is against her so she must be good? Will enough abandon her to make a difference? Then again, as you noted, would it matter even if all of them abandoned her? I can see ballot box cheating over a couple of percentage points up to perhaps 10%, but if the gap is too much, those who supported the loser will lose more faith in the system. Without faith ... the system collapses. What good is a collapsed system to Hillary's Handlers?

The election wrangling is just entering its final phase. I'm expecting all sorts of surprises. It certainly will be fun to watch. ;-)

Grover

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