News links for 8 Mar 2014
“Edward J. Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor who leaked a trove of documents revealing the agency’s surveillance operations, said he raised his concerns to more than 10 officials, “none of whom took any action to address them,” before he decided to give the documents to journalists.”
In 2013, GDP in the eurozone fell 0.5%, while it rose 0.1% in the EU as a whole.
Interesting article here that says 3 Green Party MPs released the EU free trade negotiation positioning with the EU because they felt people needed to know. This comes ahead of European Parliamentary elections. I would note that, as with these kinds of agreements, the documents give corporations equal status with countries allowing them to sue for breaching the agreement. In that sense they supercede national law for the benefit of industry.
Condoleezza Rice’s op-ed sees Putin correctly but is couched only in adversarial projection of American power terms. The projection of American power vision guiding Condoleezza Rice’s WaPo op-ed implicitly sees a hegemonic US protecting its status globally. The strategic benefits of this US-as-hegemon worldview are vastly outweighed by the economic and strategic costs
Very good historical and diplomatic perspective on Ukraine crisis from Henry Kissinger
“Based on their business operations, oil giant Gazprom (ticker: GAZP.Russia) is the most exposed, followed by Russian banks Sberbank (SBER.Russia) and VTB Bank (VTBR.Russia), and then telecom operators Mobile Telesystems (MBT) and VimpelCom (VIP). “
A very good Austrian analysis of the world views and policy choices of Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin in this Austrian paper
This article is on the viability of sanctions against Russia
“We’re now fully five years into the “global government finance Bubble.” I have argued that the emerging markets (EM) have been a major recipient of post-mortgage finance Bubble reflationary monetary stimulus. I have posited that EM is this global Bubble’s “subprime.” Moreover, it is my view that the EM Bubble is in the initial phase of deflating.”
In this article, it says that the Chinese export slump and import rise is not purely a statistical aberration. What I make of it is that there is some rebalancing going on, lunar new year or not.
This is a great article which points out how Venezuela’s oil subsidy program is ruinous economically. And note that were the state to pass through the cost of oil, it would make the social problems worse. They have nowhere to go strategically.