Archive for the ‘Weather’ Category

New nuclear talks with Iran may be possible in coming weeks, U.S. says

December 17, 2012

Washington Post
Joby Warrick

The United States and five other world powers are hastily preparing for possible new talks with Iran amid signs that the country’s leaders might be willing to meet as early as next week to discuss scaling back nuclear activities in return for future sanctions relief.

The six powers have agreed on a new package of inducements to be offered to Iran if it agrees to freeze key parts of its nuclear program, said U.S. and European officials briefed on the matter. Iran rejected a similar deal earlier this year, but U.S. officials said they were modestly hopeful that Tehran’s position had softened under the strain of international sanctions.

“Our assessment is that it is possible that they are ready to make a deal,” a senior administration official said Friday. “Certainly, the pressure is on.”

The talks would be the first high-level negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program since June, offering at least the prospect of a thaw in a standoff that has grown increasingly tense in recent months. The apparent movement on the diplomatic front came amid reports that Iran had agreed to concessions in a separate dispute with U.N. nuclear officials over access to an Iranian base allegedly used for nuclear weapons research.

There was no confirmation from Tehran about pending talks with world powers. On Friday, a member of Iran’s nuclear negotiating team expressed skepticism about a possible deal with the six-nation bloc known as the P5-plus-1. “Personally, I am not optimistic,” Mostafa Dolatyar told reporters during a visit to India. But he added: “Everything could be subject to negotiation.”

Three U.S. and European officials briefed on the preparations said Iranian negotiators were discussing a timetable for new talks, which might be held in Istanbul. Initial meetings could begin as early as next week, though they are more likely to start after the New Year’s holiday, said the officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss diplomatically sensitive negotiations.

U.S. officials said the purpose would be to test Iranian willingness to halt certain nuclear activities as an interim step, or a “confidence-building” measure, to ease international fears that Tehran is secretly developing nuclear weapons. In exchange, Iran would be offered technical help with its civilian nuclear program and a lifting of a ban on the purchase of aircraft parts, the officials said.

The interim measures, if accepted, could be the starting point for a future “grand bargain” that would set permanent limits on Iran’s nuclear activities in exchange for rolling back economic sanctions, the officials said.

The P5-plus-1 group — Britain, China, France, Germany, Russia and the United States — made similar demands during three fruitless rounds of talks with Iran in the spring. Iranian officials complained at the time that the group’s proposal did not contain sufficient sanctions relief and said they would await the outcome of the U.S. presidential election before resuming the effort. Since those talks, international sanctions on Iran have been tightened.

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DRY RUN? 18 Major Internet Hubs Down Across North America This Week

November 1, 2012

This week, 18 major internet hubs were downed across North America. Though several of them are in the areas hit by Hurricane Sandy, many others are not.

What’s really going on? Was Hurricane Sandy a dry run for something coming up…?

North America
Avg. Response Time: 364
Avg. Packet Loss: 32 %
Total Routers: 37
Network up: 51 %

View Graphs

Router

Location Currentt Index Response Time(ms) Time (ms) Packet Loss(%) Loss (%)
anhm7204.exo.com California (Anaheim) 0 0 100
mc-gateway.lansmart.com California (Fresno) 95 47 0
dnsauth1.sys.gtei.net California (Los Angeles) 98 13 0
rx0ar-technicare.ed.bigpipeinc.com Canada (Edmonton) 94 59 0
gw02.wlfdle.phub.net.cable.rogers.com Canada (Ontario) 0 0 100
anguhub14.net.ubc.ca Canada (Vancouver) 0 0 100
loopback0.gw2.den4.alter.net Colorado (Denver) 86 138 0
router.firstcls.com Georgia 0 0 100
atl-datacenter-gw2.capitalinternet.com Georgia (Atlanta) 0 0 100
loopback0.gw9.chi2.alter.net Illinois (Chicago) 93 60 0
cisco-gnarly.n-connect.net Iowa 93 65 0
crystal-cavern.ctcco.com Kansas (Lenexa) 94 57 0
cisco.syssrc.com Maryland 91 82 0
router-in.nemetschek.net Maryland (Columbia) 94 58 0
pos1-0-0-155m.ar1.bos1.gblx.net Massachusetts (Boston) 86 136 0
lan-d32-0606-0578.uninet-ide.com.mx Mexico (Chihuahua) 0 0 100
rr1.torixt.avantel.net.mx Mexico (Coahuila) 94 57 0
rr2.gdlmha.avantel.net.mx Mexico (Guadalajara) 94 57 0
rr1.reyixt.avantel.net.mx Mexico (Tamaulipas) 94 59 0
revenant.netservicesgroup.com Michigan (Saginaw) 91 81 0
border0-e0.oc48-ypsi.hdl.com Michigan (Ypsilanti) 0 0 100
wormhole.homeisp.com Missouri (Kansas City) 94 59 0
pwps-core01.powerpulse.cc Nevada (Las Vegas) 97 20 0
isp.state.nh.us New Hampshire 0 0 100
sugaree.arorapc.com New Jersey 0 0 100
ac-gw.dandy.net New Jersey (Atlantic City) 0 0 100
180.atm6-0.gw7.nyc9.alter.net New York (NYC) 0 0 100
wookie.core.3z.net Ohio (Cincinnati) 0 0 100
sl-bb21-pen-15-0.sprintlink.net Pennsylvania (Philadelphia) 0 0 100
gw-inet.ktc.com Texas 0 0 100
core-router.centramedia.net Texas (Pampa) 0 0 100
www.xmission.com Utah (Salt Lake City) 96 33 0
er01.asbn.eli.net Virginia (Ashburn) 0 0 100
core1-sttl.sitespecific.net Washington (Seattle) 95 47 0
gate.netwrx1.com Wisconsin 0 0 100
core-1601-bmia-elkwpop-1-3.mia.net Wisconsin (Elkhorn) 0 0 100
5dl-dst-rt2.5ninesdata.com Wisconsin (Madison) 93 64 0
This graph shows the North AmericaTraffic Index for the past 24 hours:  Source: Internet Traffic Report

Hurricane Sandy Takes Bite out of Big Apple

November 1, 2012

Significant damage was done to various locations of New York City this week, with estimates of property damage and loss of business totalling upwards of $3 billion.

Before and after photos of underground car park in Manhattan…

Hurricane Sandy shuts down New York City’s subway system as tunnels become flooded

October 30, 2012

*Manhattan residents effectively marooned on the island as bridges are closed and roads blocked

Louise Boyle
Mail Online

The New York subway could remain closed for up to four days until flood waters were pumped from tunnels, authorities said on Tuesday, but there was yet no timetable for when the system would reopen.

Seven subway tunnels under the East River were flooded and many stations submerged as the city was battered by the full force of Hurricane Sandy.

Metro Transit Authority chairman Joseph Lhota said: ‘The New York City subway system is 108 years old, but it has never faced a disaster as devastating as what we experienced last night.’

(…)Residents of Manhattan were effectively marooned on the island and those living in outlying boroughs had limited means of travel as almost all bridges were closed and many roads blocked by flood waters and fallen trees.

‘Future Tense’ – The Rising Expectation of Global Change in 2012

September 11, 2012

21st Century Wire
Sept 11, 2012

Here we are in September. The great sigh of relief the aware world breathed when the London Olympics drew to a safe close in mid August has finally been completely expelled and new inspiration drawn after the Paralympics closing ceremony on 9/9/12 passed quietly. The problem is the next suspicious date is today, 9/11/12.

Folks not in the mainstream ‘consensus reality’ are still wary, watching out for False Flag style evil shenanigans in London. A ‘9 11 event’ would be the third in a series of significant 911 events, starting with Bush Sr ‘announcing’ a new world order, followed a decade later by the collapse of the Towers, an ‘action,’ and now comes what? The three 11’s add up to 33, and that is the highest degree of freemasonry (at least that’s what they tell us). Since we had the announcement and then action, this ‘9 11’, according to the theory, should symbolize the actual beginning of the NWO, so watch out.

Next in line is the 17th of September. I want to point out that there will be a series of these dates and potential white knuckle anticipations going into the final Mayan day of this 5000 or so year age – 20th December – AKA the ‘End of Time’ (21st December is the first day of the incoming age of Aquarius).

Major events could unfold on any day leading up to this, and indeed any day after… while the secret of an elite controlling world affairs is pretty much out, the deeper conspiracies and depths of that control are still emerging. We don’t as yet know whether the predictions themselves are preventing possible False Flag events, or whether they may even help create one.

‘US AND THEM’

The lines between ‘them’ and ‘us’ are narrowing as the realization of shared co-creative reality seeps ever further into human awareness. Just as the likes of Newton and Copernicus laid the foundations of a material/scientific worldview, Quantum Physics is filtering into mainstream awareness and diluting, even dissolving the current paradigm before our very eyes. The process is enhanced by the digital communications potential and the resonance of Quantum concepts with ancient and esoteric schools of thought. Why are so many of us involved in this phenomenon, and is 2012 really a transition or is it becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy?

The interesting thing is, there are many unusual events unfolding which bear a remarkable resemblance to so-called ‘End Time’
prophecies. Lets make a little list of what’s going on right now:

Strange Sun Activity: includes fluctuating activity, previously unseen phenomena, strange giant objects and solar weather shocks.

Strange Weather: unprecedented weather, strange events and climate anomalies, records broken daily.

Strange Geological Activity: ring of fire burning bright and increased geo-event frequency and magnitude globally.

Strange Phenomena: weird lights and sounds, vibrations, mysterious substances, blood rain and rivers, zombie attacks.

Strange Animal Deaths: dead fish, birds frogs and crabs falling from sky, burned fish and dolphins.

Volatile Markets: no one has a clue what to do or what will happen next so all markets edgy and volatile.

Struggling Currencies: dollar and euro doomed, what is next?

Global Crop Failures: weather anomalies lead to crop failures worldwide.

Increasing Government Powers: reduced freedoms and rights and incitement to revolt by authorities.

Fake Wars and Stealth Invasions.

Nuclear posturing and jostling for position in the Middle East.

Now, looking at the list, it does seem a little apocalyptic. Let’s not be negatively selective here. The increase in awareness and
understanding in the general population is incredible right now. The end game is on between ‘those that would control’ and ‘those that would be free’, and it’s pretty racy stuff, especially if you try to sense the currents of energy flowing across and in between realities right now.

The very concept of what reality actually is – is falling apart, and the reality-based paradigm is struggling to maintain the essential
credibility and believability required to maintain a hold on the masses. It’s set to go anywhere and unfold rapidly. The much vaunted ‘shift’ is definitely underway, but where will it all end up?

NUCLEAR TENSION

We have the specter of nuclear war imminent, but the fear and tension felt during the Cold War is not apparent in the same way now. Along with Fukushima, the revelation that entire nuclear reactors and countless tons of toxic radioactive waste have been dumped into the sea by both former superpowers, along with factors like political and financial chaos worldwide, means that nuclear war may not hold the same the fear factor it once held. It’s almost like people are so overloaded they don’t care any more what happens. That’s likely exactly where the elite want the masses, but I am not sure they have calculated in the factors of ‘cohesiveness under duress,’ where hard times bring people together in cooperation. Sympathy and compassion rise as all suffer. Hard times are generally very healing for broken societies in the long run as the false and disposable factors of life are exposed by the deeper needs for survival and co-existence. So are they hard times or beautiful times coming? It’s a matter of perspective…

CHANGE IS AFOOT

I have always sensed that true change would be experienced as ecstatic by some and tragic by others – obviously so, if the balance of power is leveled – but there is more to this than mere vested interests and enforced poverty. The new paradigm suggests we are all in it together in a much more complete way than has been recognized thus far. It seems to be emerging that the poor needy and suppressed must change their perspective of programmed poverty consciousness to re-empower themselves, and it doesn’t look like they will get much help from the power brokers. We are all in the same position, if we can embrace the new paradigm perspective on life we can free ourselves of the mental shackles used to keep us under control.

This won’t be handed to us. We have to go get this, and it’s an internal process that leads to external changes.

NEW PARADIGM CONSCIOUSNESS

The gist seems to be to step out of being in a point between the opposites of duality. In other words, being able to encompass the range of possible states between opposites. Instead of being hot or cold, you can experience all states between hot and cold simultaneously, embracing the entire potential rather than being at a point in it. What if your arms are cold and you legs are hot? Can you experience both and embrace the difference as an experience? Can you be depressed and ecstatic simultaneously – well yes you can, if you can embrace the appropriate consciousness that allows this, and allow is a big word in this field.

‘ALLOW IT’

It seems you will not experience what you won’t allow yourself to experience, but who is doing the allowing? The subconscious mind filters out anything you have decided you don’t believe in, and a well programmed subconscious can be used to make people strictly adhere to a conditioned reality, ermm, look around you. There is more, much more to be perceived right now than you are seeing, but you won’t allow it…

We can’t perceive it all because it would be overload for the conscious mind, but we can learn to allow more to be perceived and learn to CHOOSE OUR PERSPECTIVE – a very, very scary thing for the elite, as they continue to rely on choosing our perspective for us – mwahahahaha.

MWAHAHAHAHA! Food for thought…?

– DXV

….

WORLD FOOD: A TRANSITION NEEDS TO BEGIN NOW

August 18, 2011

By Andrew McKillop
21st Century Wire
August 18, 2011

Media treatment of the major long-term issues of global food and energy does us all a big disfavour by sidetracking and diluting these issues, with wall-to-wall conspiracy theories. Oil and energy conspiracy theories are so thick on the ground they need no citation.

This also applies to the reality we face in world food and agriculture: the “conspiracy” of sure and certain global food shortage and the constantly rising threat of large scale ecosystem collapse.

NO CONSPIRACY

Beguiling undercover action is wheeled out to explain why food prices are rising, but the facts are simple: world food shortage already affects at least 900 million persons, more than 1-in-8 of the world’s present population.

The number of affected persons is growing much faster than either global economic growth or population growth. Another key fundamental is simple: the world’s current resource of arable farming land is about 1.4 billion hectares according to UN FAO. Annual gains from land development and farm expansion are countered by losses from a host of real world causes – not conspiracies. As of today, we have an average of about 0.2 hectares (2000 sq metres) per person of arable farmland for the world’s present 7 billion population, and this is much more likely to diminish than grow.

Q: How much food can any one person produce with a 50 x 40 metre patch of land?

Global food shortage already affects at least 900 million persons, more than 1-in-8 of the world's present population.

Food conspiracy theorists are forced to cobble theses of deliberate and planned food shortage for political and profit gains by conspiratorial players. While this certainly exists, the much bigger and more dangerous reality is that we have constantly rising food demand, but food supply only grows slowly: global food output growth for at least the past 15 years is characterized by uncertain and fragile, and above all slow growth.

There is no rational outlook for any repeat of the 1960s-1970s Green Revolution. Our present trajectory only leads to famine.

On the demand side, the drivers of growth are powerful: they include population growth, urban development, urban food habits, industrialized food production and sales, and emerging economy growth – raising world demand for grains, meat and fish protein, fruits and vegetable oils. On the supply side things are different. Growth of output is failing in sector after sector due to a huge range of often self-reinforcing factors. The biggest threat to future global food supply is however this: chain reaction collapse in oceanic and continent-sized land ecosystems, triggering huge falls in food supply.

This threat is now as large as the more predictable (and ‘normal or acceptable’), economic-related factors depressing food supply growth, or reducing food supply. These ‘conventional threats’ include water shortage, high prices for oil, pesticides and fertilizers, rising infrastructure costs, and land loss through urbanisation, roadbuilding, industrialisation, erosion, salination, and many other factors. The net result is simple: there is a progressive and incremental rise in agriculture’s capital intensity in all countries, and a constant drive for higher productivity on currently exploited farmland.

In a previous article I covered some aspects of the so-called Food War, and the real food crisis that exists.

COMFORTING CONSPIRACY

Conspiracy theories are above all reassuring because they allow us to cozily imagine that “everything is under control”: enough food exists, or could be produced, but wily minds and disreputable actions prevent this food arriving to hungry mouths, or prevent it being produced. Action by whistle blowing bloggers and all persons of good conscience, possibly including some politicians from minority or opposition parties and environmental NGOs, plus a few TV or film celebs, could transform the situation overnight or at least in almost no time. As they say, keep on dreaming.

Political motives for withholding or limiting food supply are usually attributed to the major food exporter countries, starting with the USA but this can also be applied to the small number of other large or medium rank food exporter countries. These include Brazil, Argentina, Ukraine, Australia, Thailand, Vietnam, the European Union considered as a bloc or group of countries, and a few other smaller exporter countries, in a global context very similar to world oil: no shortage of importers, but a real shortage of exporters. Also troubling by its similarity to fossil fuel depletion, agribusiness “farming” is heavily dependent on mining and the depletion of fixed resources – from fossil water to potash and other mineral fertilizers. 

Speculators and financiers are doing their part in distorting the prices of food worldwide.

The G-20 group of countries, which include all of the major net food surplus exporter countries and several leading food importers, has since 2008 repeatedly claimed it can or could intervene to reduce food supply shortage and rising food prices, but in each case was unable to do it. Reasons for this inability are conventionally restricted to dispute on trade and tariff issues, but basic supply/demand and food stock balances are at least as important:
http://www.bestgrowthstock.com/stock-market-news/2011/01/06/zoellick-g20-must-act-to-stabilize-food-prices/  

http://www.stuff.co.nz/world/4521451/G20-to-tackle-food-prices-as-countries-reassure

In each case of supposedly conspiratorial food exporting powers, we have to imagine these heavily urbanized and industrialized food exporter countries, or fast urbanizing and industrializing countries, have the capacity to quickly lever up their total food production but are deliberately not doing so. In fact, none of these food exporters have export surpluses covering all food crops and food products. In every case their annual growth in exportable food surpluses is either erratic or slowing, or their export volumes (if not value) are falling, relative to their own domestic food consumption. Even unpredictable but constantly varying natural factors, like seasonal weather change – related to climate change or not – now have a permanent high impact on commodity food prices, because the highly stressed supply/demand balance for major global foods does not allow sufficiently big and rapidly reconstituted stock builds to cushion increasingly rapid and frequent price shocks.

World food stocks are the focus of eagle-eyed hedge fund analysts, and their speculative zeal is well rewarded by the stock picture not only for the major grains (rice, wheat, maize, soy), but also vegetable oils and non-food bioresource products like rubber and jute. The basic picture is low or relatively low level stocks relative to demand, and for grains this is boosted by fast-growing global meat demand (multiplied by a factor of 5 since 1950), driving demand for animal feeds. Stocks of related and upstream basic inputs to food production and supply, spanning seeds, fertilizers and pesticides, and shipping storage infrastructures all create pinch points for growth of overall food supply. Over and above the chemical, biological and ecological threats to world food, the current system is overstretched and fragile, even by its own purely-for-profit terms.

Conspiracy theorists invite us to imagine the world’s few food exporter powers could change their practices and policies almost overnight, and “save the system”. This would be measured by global food commodity prices dropping for a while, before rising again, as in the 2008-2010 sequence but much more important is the higher goal of saving biodiversity and food web stability, worldwide.

TIME WASTING FANTASY

Tending to prove that Food War conspiracy theory is simple timewasting fantasy, almost no ways of permanently raising food exports are ever suggested by conspiracy theorists, and the reason is simple. When we look at the real ways for seriously increasing world food supply, we find they all need radical, very radical or extreme socioeconomic change. We have to backtrack and fast forward at the same time, with all components of the food production, processing, supply, use, waste disposal and recycling system. To be sure, piecemeal and incremental change is underway – for example organic food and traditional food production – but the global food crisis is a revolutionary paradigm changer.

Facing locked-on, unsustainable and dangerous global food production and supply systems, entrenched opposition by government and corporate players, and a basic refusal to change, it is unfortunately sure that disaster or near disaster will first be needed, to move things forward. Since it is arguable that we have never had any real modern famines, even in the immediate postwar periods of 1918-22 and 1945-49, we have no choice but to be pessimistic on how global society would react to “surprise famine”, despite this being far from a sci-fi fantasy, due to the recent, present and emerging global food context. 

A closer look at the supposed major food exporting powers shows they are in some cases basically ‘virtual’. In real terms and despite the massive food production subsidies paid by European governments to operate the Common Agricultural Policy of the Union, Europe is a large food importer bloc and has been for decades. On pure theoretical grounds (arable land per capita, water supply, climate, soil quality, biodiversity etc) Europe’s 500 million inhabitants could or might become food self sufficient – but this would need Pol Pot-type total decentralization and forced return to the soil, with radical long term remedial action to restore damaged biodiversity. The USA, always presented as the ultimate global food conspirator will likely become a net food importer in commercial terms, running a net trade deficit on food, by about 2017 on current trends. This could be changed, in theory, by a radical change in food crops – to economize on water, petroleum and cut pesticide dependence – and through a progressive return to the soil, to be sure implying heroic and revolutionary social change.

More simply, all food exporter countries and groups of countries are at present totally dependent on the “high tech mantra” of oil-pesticides-fertilizers-irrigation, and are increasingly dependent on GM (genetically modified) crops and GM livestock. Any short-term switch away from these props will inevitably reduce their total food production. Even with existing methods, their potential for reducing global food prices – and maintaining or raising their net food surpluses able to be exported – is practically zero and should be understood as that.

For livestock of all kinds (mammals, birds and fish) agribusiness farming depends on well-known, heavily described and analyzed ‘Belsen agriculture’ methods and practices for converting vegetable protein into meat patties for urban consumers. This ‘no alternative’ and currently profitable method of feeding the urban consumer mass converts crops like maize, soy, hay or rapeseed, into higher money value animal protein in the form of poultry meat, beef, pork or acquaculture-raised intensive fish, always needing massive and permanent use of antibiotics. 

Several generations of inundating animal livestock rearing with antibiotics has produced what might be expected, in antibiotic resistant pathogens – and new pathogens. This unsustainable food production is intrinsically unhealthy and dangerous, treating living animals like vegetable conversion machines and recklessly ignoring the genetic, prionic, epidemiological, biological, chemical and ecological collateral damage. The meat habits of urban consumers – always higher than rural and traditional diet consumers – face very sure and certain limits, not only to the growth of cheap meat and fish supply, but to the damage its production does to living systems and the environment.

The “real conspiracy” is therefore easy to describe. We have total dependence on depletable and depleting inputs for food production. We have increasing dependence on energy intensive, high risk food products, processes and methods which grossly interfere with and damage food webs, plant and animal genetics, and the general biology of living things. To a certain extent this is partly admitted, even by MSM (mainstream media) – but doing anything about it is out of the question!

ENVIRONMENT, BIOLOGY, ECOLOGY

Completely divorced from its basic linkage with and dependence on natural living systems, agribusiness food production systems at the global level have maintained their one-way drift to destructive and predatory methods, designed only to maximise production and profit. Starting with pesticides or biocides, a 2008 pesticide monitoring study by the US Dept of Agriculture found that around 75 percent of US food product samples tested positive for pesticides. This can then be compared with the simple, well known fact that of the 25 most commonly-used pesticides, 15 or more are known carcinogens, putting farmers themselves at risk, as shown by the depressing toll of cancers among farmers working in “high tech agribusiness”. For the USA alone, the US Environment Protection agency estimates there are 10 000 to 20 000 pesticide-related injuries and illnesses, especially including cancers, among US farm workers each year.. In other countries, especially the relative newcomers to “high tech agribusiness”, like Brazil and Argentina, China and India the rate of pesticide-related cancer among farmworkers is much higher than in the USA.

This of course “only” concerns human beings. Other living organisms are also collaterial damage victims of the pesticide onslaught, witnessed by the distressing, well-proven collapse of bee, bird,  frog and toad, and reptile populations in all or most countries with longstanding use of “modern agriculture” and therefore high cumulative levels of pesticides in their soils, waterbodies and food webs. Particularly toxic pesticides, like the organophosphates (originally developed as chemical and biological weapons) and the carbamates, in combination with no-till oil-saving “farming” where pesticides replace tractors, has especially grave impacts on soil arthropods. These vastly varied and numerous organisms are effectively the real agriculturalists, producing more soil than they consume – exactly the opposite of predatory, and destructive agribusiness “farming”.

In a word, we can easily do without so-called “farmers” spraying chemical weapons on food crops, compacting soils and destroying biodiversity – but we can never do without soil arthropods, bees, birds, amphibians and reptiles.

If the agribusiness onslaught on the basic ecological structure of the living environment stopped at the biocides this could or might be manageable, due in part to a confused, but growing understanding, even by middle class supermarket shoppers that they are buying carcinogenic poison along with their twinkies and golden nuggets, and their rigorously uniform-coloured and sized intensive-produced fruits and vegetables. However, the onslaught extends right through the food web or pyramid, firstly knocking out higher level predatory organisms and animals. high up the food web. In the world’s oceanic environment, which has no or few continental barriers and is ‘holistic’, the combination of overfishing and pollution is especially drastic, making the “recourse to aquaculture” not a profitable corporate business strategy – but a simple necessity. World fish catches of major traditional open ocean pelagic species like cod, shark, herring, whiting, mackerel, tuna and salmon, show a one-way trend: constant decline and more and more signs of outright stock collapse, despite hastily voted and enacted ‘blanket bans’ on fishing in some of the most-affected areas. 

We can go deeper and more basic with the agribusiness onslaught on the fabric of life and its support systems on this planet. Water. In countries using the most developed, that is the most intensively pernicious types of agribusiness, as much as 25 percent or one-quarter of total national water consumption can be used – that is often mined from depleting aquifers – for a single major irrigation dependent crop, like maize, soy, rapeseed, sunflower or wheat. The “sustainability” of that is laughably clear, but the collateral damage is both multiform and drastic and will depress future food production and crop yields, whatever system or process is used.

Acquifer mining for irrigation water is a proven cause of salination by seawater infill in coastal areas worldwide. Once salinated, the usually higher quality farmlands despoiled and wasted by this totally avoidable “farming” are necessarily replaced by lower quality land at higher altitude – or by another turn of the screw in the only thing that agribusiness knows: raising crop yields on shrinking good quality land by oil-pesticides-fertilizers-irrigation.

CHANGE NOW

Change requires economic restructuring, to be sure, but the first action needed is political acceptance of the need for change.

Due to our total dependence on unsustainable farming and food production systems – a lot more than simply “unhealthy” – we face constantly rising risks of wide-area biosystem breakdown and collapse through the present, constant attempt at gouging more food output from the Earth. The real conspiracy is blindly continuing on our present dead-end path – which only guarantees famine, riot and civil war.

Refusal to accept the need for change is the first crime.

Change starts with a public recognition of the no-win trajectory we are on. This is probably the biggest problem because – exactly like overpopulation – nobody wants to publicly admit that food shortage is a basic fact. The myth of “cheap food for the masses” is as pernicious and basic to the Growth Economy mantra as the cheap oil myth – which died more than 35 years ago.

The cheap food myth is next to go.

When the consumer masses can distinguish trash food – from real food – we will likely be very close to melt down: in other words you were what you ate, and now you don’t like it.

Rationalisations such as food shortage being “similar to joblessness and homelessness, and only affecting inferior people” likely have some remaining traction with the most basic-minded “middle class voters” in the Old Rich/New Poor countries of the OECD, quaffing famine video clips from Somalia on primetime before gobbling a takeout pizza just dripping with cheese, but reality is seriously eroding these supposed “comfort themes”. Even in the local agribusiness-supplied Wal-Mart or Tesco it costs a lot more the stay obese, fat and stupid that is, these days !

Cheap oil is now an almost forgotten aspiration of the car conscious middle classes, and cheap trash food will follow the same trajectory. Breakdown of the cheap  food system will most surely have a bigger impact than saying goodbye to cheap oil. The basic problem for Business As Usual is easy to state. The approximate 60% of society decreed as kleenex-throwaway by New Economy austerity programmes, still needs feeding.  As we know, before being either homeless or jobless, the sacrificed and excluded 60% of the total population outside the mould of “middle class voter” needs feeding, before being tossed in the gutter by the squeaky-clean economy, becoming “surprise rioters”.

Pretending that food is still cheap is increasingly difficult: about 45 million Americans, today in 2011, depend on food stamps to eat. This is the country which food conspiracy artists tell us has supposedly permanent and massive exportable food surpluses !  More than 1-in-7 of the USA’s population in 2011 needs food stamps to eat. The US food conspiracy is as much domestic and due to food shortage and high prices, as international and concerning the use of food supply as a geopolitical lever.

The political role of the jobless, homeless – and foodless – can only grow very fast in the Old Rich/New Poor countries, as both Mr Barack Obama and Mr David Cameron are finding out, ever day. With rising austerity programmes, needed to please bond traders and market analysts, the intensification of simple and straight food shortage as a stress factor in OECD country politics – as well as low income countries – can be very easily forecast. 

Both food and energy are unavoidable and basic needs for national populations: at times of crisis and austerity – basics count. Treating food and energy together is more productive than treating them apart, making it urgent these two themes are given the same political acknowledgement and treatment. On one hand this will be through the so-called price mechanism, deformed by the frenetic prism of commodity traders quaffing rumors, fact and fiction in equal doses. But on the other it can come literally anytime, when major continent-sized food webs and systems “surprisingly” collapse, leading to disastrously low annual crop sand food yields for major and basic food products.

*****

INTERVIEW: Globalist Threat More Dangerous Than Bin Laden

May 6, 2011

The Daily Bell
May 5, 2011

Anthony Wile, founder and Chief Editor of TheDailyBell.com, speaks with Russia Today‘s Kevin Owen (RT). Wile says that he does not think the death of Osama Bin Laden has brought any change to the safety of the world as long as “we have the fundamentalist-driven type of philosophy that is being implemented from within the chambers of the City of London and anchored under the cloak of Western style democracy.”

Wile believes that Bin Laden has not been the main threat to the world. Moreover, “people will be resistant to forceful intrusions into their backyards in order to make them believe any concepts or philosophy behind the assassination of Bin Laden. And this refers not only to people in those countries where the US military-industrial complex is busily going about spreading democracy, but also around the world and in the US itself. The retaliation will continue,” Wile says.

                  Watch Anthony Wile’s interview on RT.

The elimination of Al-Qaeda‘s leader will not facilitate the pull-out of US troops from Afghanistan, Wile believes. “The forces that are on the ground, these globalist forces that have the intent of bringing in line the various nations and states that need to be molded together in order to create a globalist government, they will continue their efforts, whatever it takes – force or propaganda through the mainstream Western media sources or the subversive movements of the CIA,” says Wile.

Wile believes that the US is using the conflicts in the Arab world to consolidate power and weaken those nation states that have been resistant “to globalist governance which will be administered by the UN and a global monetary structure that will be administered by IMF and the World Bank.”

“Americans should be more concerned with their own government and growing authoritarianism which is mounting within the US and the soft police state that is being imposed,” concludes Wile.

Radioactive Winds Head Towards Tokyo, US West Coast

March 16, 2011

Paul Joseph Watson
Infowars.com
March 16, 2011

With Japanese authorities confirming that the third blast at Fukushima’s stricken nuclear plant caused radioactive particles to be released directly into the atmosphere, localized winds are blowing the radiation towards Tokyo, causing many to flee the capital, but the longer term trajectory of upper atmosphere prevailing winds will still send any potential radiation cloud towards the U.S. west coast.

            Global Jet Stream Map for March 13-21, 2011

Following a third explosion at the plant as well as a fire in another reactor, radioactive material is now leaking directly into the atmosphere at a rate of 400 milliseverts per hour, according to The International Atomic Energy Agency. Anyone who is exposed to more than 100 milliseverts a year risks contracting cancer.

Higher than normal levels of radiation have already been detected in Tokyo, with readings up to ten times higher than normal measured in Chiba, which is 15 miles from the capital. Gamma radiation levels in the Ibaraki prefecture, which is just a hundred or so miles north of Tokyo, are 30 times higher than normal.

The French embassy, which already advised its citizens to leave Tokyo on Sunday, warns that low level radioactive winds could reach the capital within hours…

SEE FULL REPORT HERE

OIL PRICES AND THE JAPANESE DISASTER: THE HERD GOT IT WRONG

March 14, 2011

By Andrew McKillop
21st Century Wire
March 14, 2011

JAPAN’S OIL DEMAND WILL BOUNCE BACK

Friday 11th trading on the US Nymex and to lower extent on the London ICE was driven by a quick sentiment-driven response to breaking news of the Japanese disaster. Refineries were on fire, ports were closed and cars, buses and trucks were floating like jetsam, in the raging tsunami. Oil traders surmised that Japan’s oil demand and its import draw on world supply were both set to fall and prices were sharply marked down through the day. Analysis…

FRIDAY TRADERS MADE A WRONG WAY BET – BUY ON THE DIP

We can ask how the Herd got it wrong, and the answer is they made a mistake in all kinds of ways. Even in the short term, probably within at most a week, Japan’s oil demand and therefore its call on world export supply will be up. The reasons are multiple…

Japan is faced by a major catastrophe. Heavy transport, cranes and earthmoving equipment, diggers and dozers will be moving into action fast. Some of these machines use a couple of barrels per hour, and both helicopter and airplane movements will be up in the ongoing rescue effort. Electric power plants have been hit, and the energy shortfall will be made up in part with oil-powered gensets. Worried Japanese will be driving where they can, when they can, and filling up on oil at every station they can find with remaining supplies. While the weather stays unusually cold in Japan, oil heating demand will also be up.

NUCLEAR POWER

The next reason that will make oil prices bounce, and can speed Japan’s oil demand recovery is the massive damage to nuclear power plants and the image of nuclear power in Japan.

Both on fundamentals and on sentiment, when nuclear power takes a hit oil will gain. We do not yet exactly know how many nuclear plants are seriously damaged, and could explode like the 1986 Chernobyl disaster, but every reactor that is down will lever up oil demand.

Sentiment will translate that to an outsized rise for oil futures, with the rise getting bigger every day the Japanese government has to sidestep and parry questions on their ageing nuclear plants and how well, or how badly they resist earthquakes and tsunami.

Where markets are concerned, there is a risk that Japan is under such stress that they can’t even get their oil ports and refineries functioning again before 10 + days, making Japan’s draw on world oil supply slower to return. But it’s unlikely. Still, since Saturday, TV news from Japan has been depicting plenty scenes of totally empty filling stations and 800-metre lines of cars searching for their next 10 litre fill per car from any remaining stations that still stock fuel.

Worldwide concern about nuclear power’s safety and real ability to deliver cheap electricity, and its real ability to save oil will grow, as the Japanese disaster deepens and more information trickles out. Whenever more balanced truthful information about nuclear power emerges, oil will always gain.

COPYRIGHT ANDREW MCKILLOP  2011

Andrew McKillop is guest writer and energy markets analyst for 21st Century Wire. He has more than 30 years experience in the energy, economic and finance domains. Trained at London UK’s University College, he has extensive experience in energy policy, project administration, including the development and financing of alternate energy.

Scold’s Bridle: A practical solution to Egypt’s problems and our own

February 8, 2011

The Runnymede Institute
Feb 8, 2011

Victors write the history of the human experience. We normally tend to speak in terms that give conflict a special place in our psyche and expect there will always be a loser to pity or despise. It’s believed this is a natural condition, part of the brain’s basic software package we’re all born with but we humans are not so one-dimensional.

The question of Nature over Nurture has been debated in academia for decades and careers were built and destroyed on the notion of whether you could make a perfect man by design or if we’re born that way. If one were to ask, which attribute makes people good citizens, the natural modern answer is the same as anywhere in recorded time. It’s dependent on where you live, who you live with and under what conditions, making both sides of the argument redundant. Are Egyptians ogres, as TV News sez?

Intellectual impasse means every Perfesser Nozalot is itching to spew his theories at the drop of a hat, via television best of all. After billions of dollars, trillions of hours and forests of ‘papers’, they weren’t able to divine what makes us tick yet they’re perpetually primed and ready to clean our clocks. Salary and tenure require output!

We’ve seen publicly funded studies on every imaginable subject, some they made up out of thin air but there isn’t any social anthropolist’s guide to Middle Eastern people’s uniquesness setting them apart from the rest of us. That would require a good dose of politics to even come close to understanding the ‘radical’ behaviour stories we’re bombarded with ad nauseam, one and all enemies of Israel according to script.

Isn’t it fair to ask the question whether there’s a direct relationship between their wall building and the caging of their own people in the past? We’re guessing it’s not, some people’s feelings are more delicate than others’. Oddly enough, Egyptians are probably Israel’s best friend in the Islamic world and they take the peace accords as seriously as they should. Somewhere deep in their sub-conscious, the true goodness of that culture does allow for other people’s self-determination and right to exist.

Egyptian friends of Runnymede Institute tell us the troubles started with a perfectly peaceful protest and opportunists fomented the violence we’re faced with today. Our Israeli friends, tell us they’re very concerned, mirroring the man on the street in Cairo. One and all ask for nothing more than news, reality based missives but that’s not available on TV or in the print media as it’s replete with gossip and rumours.

The proverbial elephant of many names, misinformation, product placement and biased ‘stories’ galore is all we get from those who would have us believe they perform a public service that ‘informs’ us. Morsels of fact don’t always add up to a palatable, wholesome meal when the news-chef’s spoiled the broth by spicing it with ambiguities and deviant mind massage additives.

They’re talking to us like we’re children and that doesn’t bode well for ‘them’ in the near future. As any elementary school teacher will tell you, kids shouldn’t be pushed too far and watch out, they just might pull! Daring to question the validity of a news story has always been a good way to guarantee the donning of the modern day Scold’s Bridle. You know the name, RMI readers are smart ;-).

Brank

16th century Scottish brank or "scold's bridle", made of iron.

The major networks covering this ‘Egyptian Crisis’ of their own making don’t need any pesky inquisitors asking why the price of bread is suddenly so high in the region. That would mean bashing their own advertisers and in turn their suppliers in the Agro-biz. It would make their stock market reports less interesting to show how commodities brokers, from their perches in the financial ‘districts’ around the world successfully rig the lives of distant peoples everywhere.

Our ancestors had simple, pragmatic solutions for troublemakers whose thoughtless ravings did actual harm to others, they didn’t need political correctness to show them the way. The Bridle gagged and muzzled the offenders to spare society having to chop off their heads. Perhaps this solution can be applied to network news readers to make them think about what tumbles out of their mouths in lieu of their quasi-authoritative delivery and plausible presentation of unadulterated schlock.

‘Free Press’ like ‘Free Trade’ is a misnomer, it puts us in a comfort zone that always gets uncomfortable as a rule. The Internet’s put paid to that and noises of an off-switch from a scolding government are akin to the master gossip fitting ‘us’ with a muzzle. We suggest re-instituting the original, an iron contraption with a pointy in-mouth piece to puncture the tongue if they wag it. It’s a good way to reindustrialize a small segment of the American economy because there’s no way to quantify potential demand. Let’s start off slowly, detain all the weathermen and dominoes will fall.

  Weatherman Michael Fish keeping the public relaxed in the wake of a force ten hurricane