Friday, 2 June 2017

Trumped, America First Again.

Baltic Dry Index. 850 -28    Brent Crude 50.36

"[M]any publications now claiming the world is on the brink of a global warming disaster said the same about an impending ice age – just 30 years ago. Several major ones, including The New York Times, Time magazine and Newsweek, have reported on three or even four different climate shifts since 1895."

We open with the big news of yesterday, the USA pulling out of the mistaken,  2015 global mania agreement to fight, rebranded and relaunched, “climate change.” I suspect it will just be the first of many in the decades ahead, as forecast “climate change” fails to live up to the flawed and imperfect computer models. But for now media, and socialist, snowflake outrage, are in full hue and cry at America dropping the 1990s socialist fad. 

Much ado about nothing, is likely to be the verdict of history, since the planet hasn’t been warming in almost two decades, though no one knows why. Last time I checked, the Himalayas still had its glaciers, and the Polar Bears were still eating unwary scientists and tourists. I’m old enough to remember the 1960s, when the media fad and mania back then was the coming new ice age, due to hit about now.

Below, the media mania frenzy after the President Trump action.

Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.

Mark Twain.

Thu Jun 1, 2017 | 11:12pm EDT

Trump abandons global climate pact; allies voice dismay

President Donald Trump said on Thursday he would withdraw the United States from the landmark 2015 global agreement to fight climate change, a move that fulfilled a major campaign pledge but drew condemnation from U.S. allies and business leaders.

Trump, tapping into the "America First" message he used when he was elected president last year, said the Paris accord would undermine the U.S. economy, cost U.S. jobs, weaken American national sovereignty and put the country at a permanent disadvantage to the other countries of the world.

"We don't want other leaders and other countries laughing at us any more. And they won't be," Trump said.
"The same nations asking us to stay in the agreement are the countries that have collectively cost America trillions of dollars through tough trade practices and in many cases lax contributions to our critical military alliance," Trump added.

Supporters of the accord, including some leading U.S. business figures, called Trump's move a blow to international efforts to curb the warming of the planet that threatens far-reaching consequences for this century and beyond. Former Democratic President Barack Obama expressed regret over the pullout from a deal he was instrumental in brokering.

Trump Cedes Climate Policy Leadership to Xi With Paris Accord Exit

by David Tweed
President Donald Trump’s decision to quit the Paris accord has just handed China’s President Xi Jinping a golden opportunity to burnish his country’s image as a clean-energy innovator and global leader in the drive to avoid possible future catastrophic climate change.

Trump’s move to pull the U.S. out of the almost 200-nation deal, which risks undermining the commitment of other countries to limit fossil-fuel emissions, has drawn sharp criticism from key American allies across Europe and Asia. But Trump, in a speech Thursday at the White House, said the accord undermined U.S. interests, sent taxpayer money abroad and didn’t require enough from other nations, singling out China and India.

“This agreement is less about the climate and more about other countries gaining a financial advantage over the U.S.,” Trump said, making good on a campaign pledge last year to “cancel” participation in the agreement. The landmark deal sealed in 2015 brought together the U.S. and European Union, as well as big developing nations like China, India and Brazil, in pledging limits on fossil-fuel pollution and funds to help poorer countries adapt to climate change.

With the decision, the U.S. is now deeply isolated on climate change policy. It joins Syria and Nicaragua outside the Paris consensus, which includes governments as divergent as Saudi Arabia and North Korea.

Thu Jun 1, 2017 | 8:34pm EDT

Trump misunderstood MIT climate research, university officials say

Massachusetts Institute of Technology officials said U.S. President Donald Trump badly misunderstood their research when he cited it on Thursday to justify withdrawing the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement.

Trump announced during a speech at the White House Rose Garden that he had decided to pull out of the landmark climate deal, in part because it would not reduce global temperatures fast enough to have a significant impact.

"Even if the Paris Agreement were implemented in full, with total compliance from all nations, it is estimated it would only produce a two-tenths of one degree Celsius reduction in global temperature by the year 2100," Trump said. 

"Tiny, tiny amount."

That claim was attributed to research conducted by MIT, according to White House documents seen by Reuters. The Cambridge, Massaschusetts-based research university published a study in April 2016 titled "How much of a difference will the Paris Agreement make?" showing that if countries abided by their pledges in the deal, global warming would slow by between 0.6 degree and 1.1 degrees Celsius by 2100.

"We certainly do not support the withdrawal of the U.S. from the Paris agreement," said Erwan Monier, a lead researcher at the MIT Joint Program on the Science and Policy of Global Change, and one of the study's authors.

"If we don't do anything, we might shoot over 5 degrees or more and that would be catastrophic," said John Reilly, the co-director of the program, adding that MIT's scientists had had no contact with the White House and were not offered a chance to explain their work.

Thu Jun 1, 2017 | 5:19pm EDT

France, Italy, Germany defend Paris Accord, say cannot be renegotiated

Italy, France and Germany said on Thursday they regretted U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw from the Paris climate accord and dismissed his suggestion that the global pact could be revised.

"We deem the momentum generated in Paris in December 2015 irreversible and we firmly believe that the Paris Agreement cannot be renegotiated since it is a vital instrument for our planet, societies and economies," the leaders of the three countries said in a rare joint statement.

Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron urged their allies to speed up efforts to combat climate change and said they would do more to help developing countries adapt.

The three leaders tried to convince Trump last week at a Group of Seven summit to stay in the pact and honor U.S. commitments undertaken by the previous administration.

In a speech at the White House, Trump said the U.S. would look to renegotiate the agreement and condemned what he called "draconian" financial and economic burdens imposed by the deal.

The unusual French-Italian-German statement, released barely an hour after Trump announced his decision, underscored the disappointment of the eurozone's three largest economies and their resolve to plow ahead without Washington's support.

We close for the day with typical EUSSR fudge. Who cares about the rules, we’ve got the power. Below, Italy gets half of a fig leaf cover, to bailout the world’s oldest and wonkiest bank. Everything that’s wrong with the unreformed, unreformable, wealth and jobs destroying EUSSR, exposed in a single back room fix.

Thu Jun 1, 2017 | 12:28pm EDT

EU, Rome seal preliminary rescue deal for Monte dei Paschi

The European Commission and Italy have reached a preliminary agreement on a state bailout for Monte dei Paschi di Siena (BMPS.MI) that includes heavy cost cuts, losses for some investors and a cap on pay for the bank's top executives.

The deal brings close to an end months of negotiations over the fate of the world's oldest bank and Italy's fourth biggest lender, the worst performer in European stress tests last year.

The Commission said it had agreed in principle on a restructuring plan for the bank so that it can be bailed out by the state under new European rules for dealing with bank crises.

"It would allow Italy to inject capital into MPS as a precaution, in line with EU rules, whilst limiting the burden on Italian taxpayers," Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said in a statement.

The bank would undergo deep restructuring to ensure its viability, including by cleaning its balance sheet of non-performing loans, she said.

Burdened by a bad loan pile and a mismanagement scandal, Monte dei Paschi has been for years at the forefront of Italy's slow-brewing banking crisis.

It was forced to request state aid in December to help cover a capital shortfall of 8.8 billion euros ($9.9 billion) after it failed to raise money on the market.

The accord with the European Commission exploits an exception in current EU rules allowing member states to bolster the capital buffers of a bank provided it is solvent and that shareholders and junior bondholders shoulder some of the losses.

The government could end up injecting some 6.6 billion euros into the bank, taking a stake of around 70 percent.

The agreement with Brussels is conditional on the European Central Bank confirming the lender meets capital requirements and on the sale of some 26 billion euros in soured debts to private investors.

Monte dei Paschi said on Monday it was in exclusive talks until June 28 with a domestic fund and a group of investors to shift the debts off its balance sheet and sell them repackaged as securities.

You can't depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.

Mark Twain.

Crooks and Scoundrels Corner

The bent, the seriously bent, and the totally doubled over.
It was Putin what done it, the hacking that is, until it wasn’t.
Russia will not soon become, if it ever becomes, a second copy of the United States or England - where liberal values have deep historic roots.

Vladimir Putin.

Wed May 31, 2017 | 12:03pm EDT

Blame game for cyber attacks grows murkier as spying, crime tools mix

Veteran espionage researcher Jon DiMaggio was hot on the trail three months ago of what on the face of it looked like a menacing new industrial espionage attack by Russian cyber spies.

All the hallmarks were there: targeted phishing emails common to government espionage, an advanced Trojan horse for stealing data from inside organizations, covert communication channels for grabbing documents and clues in the programming code indicating its authors were Russian speakers.

It took weeks before the lead cyber spying investigator at Symantec, a top U.S. computer security firm, figured out instead he was tracking a lone-wolf cyber criminal.

DiMaggio won't identify the name of the culprit, whom he has nicknamed Igor, saying the case is a run-of-the-mill example of increasing difficulties in separating national spy agency activity from cyber crime. The hacker comes from Transdniestria, a disputed, Russian-speaking region of Moldova, he said.

"The malware in question, Trojan.Bachosens, was so advanced that Symantec analysts initially thought they were looking at the work of nation-state actors," DiMaggio told Reuters in a phone interview on Wednesday. "Further investigation revealed a 2017 equivalent of the hobbyist hackers of the 1990s."

Reuters could not contact the alleged hacker.

The example highlights the dangers of jumping to conclusions in the murky world of cyber attack and defense, as tools once only available to government intelligence services find their way into the computer criminal underground.

Security experts refer to this as "the attribution problem", using technical evidence to assign blame for cyber attacks in order to take appropriate legal and political responses.

These questions echo through the debate over whether Russia used cyber attacks to influence last year's U.S. presidential elections and whether Moscow may be attempting to disrupt national elections taking place in coming months across Europe.

The topic is a big talking point for military officials and private security researchers at the International Conference on Cyber Conflict in Tallin this week. It has been held each year since Estonia was swamped in 2007 by cyber attacks that took down government, financial and media websites amid a dispute with Russia. Attribution for those attacks remains disputed.

"Attribution is almost never a clean, smoking-gun," said Paul Vixie, creator of the first commercial anti-spam service, whose latest firm, Farsight Security, helps firms track down cyber attackers to identify and block them.

Raising the stakes, a mystery group calling itself ShadowBrokers has taken credit for leaking cyber-spying tools that are now being turned to criminal use, including ones used in the recent WannaCry global ransomware attack, ratcheting up cyber security threats to a whole new level.

In recent weeks, ShadowBrokers has threatened to sell more such tools, believed to have been stolen from the U.S. National Security Agency, to enable hacking into the world's most used computers, software and phones. (

"The bar for what's considered advanced is lowered as time goes by," said Sean Sullivan, a security researcher with Finnish cyber firm F-Secure.
Nobody should pin their hopes on a miracle.

Vladimir Putin.
Technology Update.
With events happening fast in the development of solar power and graphene, I’ve added this section. Updates as they get reported. Is converting sunlight to usable cheap AC or DC energy mankind’s future from the 21st century onwards? DC? A quantum computer next?

Light-matter interaction detected in single layer of atoms

Discovery could lead to advances in 2-D materials, controlling light

Date: May 30, 2017

Source: University of Central Florida

Summary: Researchers have pioneered a way to detect the interaction of light and matter on a single layer of atoms. It's the first demonstration of an elastic scattering, near-field experiment performed on a single layer of atoms.

University of Central Florida researchers have developed a new and better way of detecting interactions between light and matter at the atomic level, a discovery that could lead to advances in the emerging field of two-dimensional materials and new ways of controlling light.

Scientists typically use spectrometry tools to study the way light interacts with a gas, liquid or solid. That method is described as "inelastic," meaning the light's energy is altered by its contact with matter.

A team led by Professor Aristide Dogariu of UCF's CREOL, The College of Optics & Photonics, has pioneered a way to detecting such interaction on a single layer of atoms -- an exceedingly hard task because of the atom's minute size -- using a method that's "elastic." That means the light's energy remains unchanged.

"Our experiment establishes that, even at atomic levels, a statistical optics-based measurement has practical capabilities unrivaled by conventional approaches," Dogariu said.

As reported this month in Optica, the academic journal of The Optical Society, it's the first demonstration of an elastic scattering, near-field experiment performed on a single layer of atoms.

The researchers demonstrate this novel and fundamental phenomenon using graphene, a two-dimensional, crystalline material. Their technique involved random illumination of the atomic monolayer from all possible directions and then analyzing how the statistical properties of the input light are influenced by miniscule defects in the atomic layer.

The method provided scientists not only with a simple and robust way to assess structural properties of 2D materials but also with new means for controlling the complex properties of optical radiation at subwavelength scales.

The team's finding that its method is superior to conventional ones is of broad interest to the physics community. Beyond that, it could lead to other advances.

Another weekend, and the last weekend before John Bull votes. Another weekend for Donald Trump tweets too. Another chance for Chancellor Merkel to show up in a beer tent chastising the United States. Another chance for yet more chaos in Spain, Italy, and France. What’s not to like about our new 21st century, dumbed down, Great Nixonian Error of fiat money world.

As fewer and fewer people remember real money, the great finely tuned machine of capitalism, gets ever more distorted by central bankster cronyism. What more could possibly go wrong? Lots, as unfortunately we seem doomed to discover. Have a great weekend everyone.

"If facts do not conform to theory, they must be disposed of."

N.R.F. Maier, Maier's Law.

The monthly Coppock Indicators finished May

DJIA: 21,009 +157 Up. NASDAQ:  6,199 +219 Up. SP500: 2,412 +161 Up.

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