Daily Digest 8/5 – Sharp Rise In Brazilian Deforestation Undeniable, The Metadata Trap


Hong Kong police fire tear gas as city is again roiled by protests (Sparky1)

On Saturday, protesters set fires in the streets, outside a police station and in rubbish bins, and blocked the entrance to the Cross-Harbour Tunnel, cutting a major artery linking Hong Kong island and the Kowloon peninsula.

Perfect summer storm brewing for stock correction as trade war simmers and more Fed action awaited (Adam)

Trump, in threatening new tariffs on $300 billion in Chinese goods on Thursday, said the tariffs would go into effect on Sept. 1 unless China acts, but no new talks are expected before September. Economists said if the tariffs are put in place, the risks of a U.S. recession rise, particularly if businesses step back from investment, and possibly even hiring. But that could also prompt the Fed to cut interest rates to rescue the economy when it meets in September.

Dow plunges 600 points after China devalues its currency (Thomas R.)

“Risks of Trump intervening in foreign exchange markets have increased with China letting the yuan go,” wrote Viraj Patel, FX and global macro strategist at Arkera, on Twitter. “If this was an all out currency war – the US would hands down lose. Beijing [is] far more advanced in playing the currency game [and has] bigger firepower.”

The superrich are selling stocks, buying properties and keeping cash ready (thc0655)

What has changed, however, is that these deep-pocketed investors, in the call of the day, are continuing to move away from equities and build up their positions in real estate. As Tiger 21 President Michael Sonnenfeldt previously told MarketWatch, the stock market is “‘priced to perfection’ and rising economic inequality leading to greater polarization in America and elsewhere.”

Jim Grant: The Trouble With Modern Monetary Theory (thc0655)

The second big idea in MMT concerns the nature of the public debt. There’s nothing to fear from it, said Lerner—at least, not if a government can borrow indefinitely in its own currency. “The greater the national debt,” the economist wrote, “the greater is the quantity of private wealth. The reason for this is simply that for every dollar of debt owed by the government, there is a private creditor who owns the government obligations…and who regards these obligations as part of his private fortune.”

Russian police detain over 800 in opposition crackdown in Moscow (Sparky1)

Police said they had detained 600 and that 1,500 had attended the protest, though footage of demonstrations which flared in different parts of Moscow suggested many more had taken part. Opposition activists later posted screen shots online of police reports suggesting around 10,000 had attended.

Every Step You Take (Sparky1)

Right away we were surrounded by sketchy looking people. They’re plain-clothes policemen and are a regular occurrence at sensitive stories. Their main aim is to prevent you from getting your story. They’ll step in front of me as I’m trying to get a shot. Sometimes they’ll put a hand in front of my camera.

Growing panic in Kashmir as India, Pakistan bicker over border clashes (Sparky1)

Pakistan denied the claims, describing them as “baseless” as it accused India of using cluster bombs against civilians, killing two people — including a four-year-old boy — and critically injuring 11 others. New Delhi has denied the charge.

Scientists unveil the first-ever image of quantum entanglement (newsbuoy)

They set up a super-sensitive camera capable of detecting single photons which would only take an image when it caught sight of both one photon and its entangled ‘twin’, creating a visible record of the entanglement of the photons.

The Metadata Trap (Sparky1)

Government workers with security clearance promise “never [to] divulge classified information to anyone” who is not authorized to receive it. But for many whistleblowers, the decision to go public results from troubling insights into government activity, coupled with the belief that as long as that activity remains secret, the system will not change. While there are some protections for whistleblowers who raise their concerns internally or complain to Congress, there is also a long history of those same people being punished for speaking out.

Third Mexican journalist killed in a week amid record murder rate (Sparky1)

Murders in Mexico jumped in the first half of the year to the highest on record, according to official data. The spiralling violence underscores the challenges President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has faced since taking office in December with a vow to reduce violence in the country ravaged by notorious drug cartels.

8chan: Another Mass Shooting, Another Internet Purge (thc0655)

If you don’t know what 8chan is, well it’s like 4chan but without the sense of decency. If you don’t know what 4chan is, it’s like Reddit went off its medication.

The Inslaw Octopus (newsbuoy)

A House Judiciary Committee report released last September found evidence raising “serious concerns” that high officials at the Department of Justice executed a pre-meditated plan to destroy Inslaw and co-opt the rights to its PROMIS software. The committee’s call for an independent counsel have fallen on deaf ears. One journalist, Danny Casolaro, died as he attempted to tell the story (see sidebar), and boxes of documents relating to the case have been destroyed, stolen, or conveniently “lost” by the Department of Justice.

But so far, not a single person has been held accountable.

Fears of ‘Chernobyl on ice’ as Russia prepares floating nuclear plant (Sparky1)

While plans have existed for generations and the US deployed a small nuclear reactor onboard a barge in the Panama Canal Zone in the 1960s and 70s, they have never been mass-produced. Rosatom, Russia’s state nuclear energy company, hopes to change that and sell customised floating nuclear power stations to countries around the world. Rosatom said it has signed a project development agreement to explore the possibility of building a floating nuclear power plant for Sudan, among others.

US Northwest towns ‘woefully unprepared’ as fire risk grows (Sparky1)

But global warming is changing the region’s seasons. A national climate assessment prepared by 13 federal agencies and released in 2018 said the Pacific Northwest had warmed nearly 2 degrees Fahrenheit since 1900 and that trend would continue into the century, leading to warmer winters and less mountain snowpack.

More homes evacuated as new storms threaten collapsing UK dam (Sparky1)

The Met Office weather agency has issued a thunderstorm warning for Sunday afternoon, and predicted there could be 30 to 40 millimetres of rain in just a couple of hours.

Residents who fled their homes on Thursday have been allowed back this weekend to collect any essential items, but limited to 15 minutes and warned they enter the town at their own risk.

Humanity’s next test: feed 10 billion without ruining Earth (Sparky1)

Stephen Cornelius, WWF’s chief advisor on climate change, said the world needed “an urgent transformation in how we use land in the future.

“This includes the type of farming we do, our food system and diets, and the conservation of areas such as forests and other natural ecosystems.”

Sharp rise in Brazilian deforestation undeniable, says sacked research chief (Sparky1)

Bolsonaro and his environment minister, Ricardo Salles, have taken issue with this interpretation of the numbers produced by a system known as DETER, saying they should not be used to measure month-by-month increases but only as indicative data to help enforcement teams target operations against illegal logging and burning in an area three times the size of Western Europe.

Gold & Silver

Click to read the PM Daily Market Commentary: 8/2/19

Provided daily by the Peak Prosperity Gold & Silver Group

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