* COLLAPSE AT HAND
By Paul Craig Roberts
[…] It is difficult to imagine a more reckless and unstable position for a bank to place itself in, but Goldman Sachs takes the cake. That bank’s $44 trillion in derivative bets is covered by only $19 billion in risk-based capital, resulting in bets 2,295 times larger than the capital that covers them.
Bets on interest rates comprise 81% of all derivatives. These are the derivatives that support high US Treasury bond prices despite massive increases in US debt and its monetization.
US banks’ derivative bets of $230 trillion, concentrated in five banks, are 15.3 times larger than the US GDP. A failed political system that allows unregulated banks to place uncovered bets 15 times larger than the US economy is a system that is headed for catastrophic failure. As the word spreads of the fantastic lack of judgment in the American political and financial systems, the catastrophe in waiting will become a reality.
Everyone wants a solution, so I will provide one. The US government should simply cancel the $230 trillion in derivative bets, declaring them null and void. As no real assets are involved, merely gambling on notional values, the only major effect of closing out or netting all the swaps (mostly over-the-counter contracts between counter-parties) would be to take $230 trillion of leveraged risk out of the financial system. The financial gangsters who want to continue enjoying betting gains while the public underwrites their losses would scream and yell about the sanctity of contracts. However, a government that can murder its own citizens or throw them into dungeons without due process can abolish all the contracts it wants in the name of national security. And most certainly, unlike the war on terror, purging the financial system of the gambling derivatives would vastly improve national security. […]
* HOW TO START A REVOLUTION
Download the book here… http://watchlearnteach.com/Non-Violent-Revolution.zip
* WHAT WOULD BE THE FALLOUT FROM AN ACCIDENT AT FUKUSHIMA?
Source: Washington’s Blog
Dr. Paul Gailey sent me the following email:
Because so many claims were flying around with regard to Fukushima’s spent fuel pool number 4, we performed a technical analysis of the situation to gain some perspective on the parameters of the crisis. If you are interested, there is a link to our Special Report on Fukushima at www.holophi.ch/blog/ , along with some overview perspectives in our April newsletter also at that web address.
Our analysis is done in a way that is difficult to dispute because we based everything on published scientific reports and measurements and performed the analysis in a straightforward way. While the many anecdotal radiation measurements and reports by members of the public may very well be accurate and important, we felt there was a need for a scientifically defensible analysis that did not depend on public measurements, which are difficult to substantiate and can be easily criticized. […]
The report (original pdf version here).
* FOUR SITES WHERE YOU CAN MONITOR U.S. RADIATION LEVELS
By Jeff McMahon, Forbes
Radiation from Japan’s Fukushima nuclear disaster has been detected in the air in five Western states and in rainwater in at least two so far.
While federal officials continue to assure the public that no harmful levels have reached the United States, some Americans have not been content to take the government at its word. Geiger counters have been selling like popsicles in summer, and traffic has never been higher at websites that display data from radiation monitoring stations.
We list three such sites below. […]
* MAINE STUDY FINDS POTENTIALLY DISASTROUS THREAT TO SINGLE-CELLED PLANTS THAT SUPPORT ALL LIFE
By Christopher Cousins, BDN Staff
Phytoplankton. If the mention of the tiny plant organisms that permeate the world’s oceans isn’t enough to pique your interest, consider this: They produce the oxygen in every other breath you take.
Still not interested? This is where it’s hard not to take notice. In 2007, the reproduction rate of phytoplankton in the Gulf of Maine decreased suddenly by a factor of five — what used to take a day now takes five — and according to a recently released study by the Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences in Boothbay, it hasn’t bounced back.
So what does it mean? According to Barney Balch, the lab’s senior research scientist and lead author of the study, such a change in organisms at the bottom of the planetary food chain and at the top of planetary oxygen production could have disastrous consequences for virtually every species on Earth, from lobsters and fish that fuel Maine’s marine industries to your grandchildren. But the 12-year Bigelow study focused only on the Gulf of Maine, which leads to the question, will it spread? […]