The game grinds on, the looting accelerates, those at the bottom suffer, and the agenda endures, with Greece the epitome of what’s in store for the rest of us — with the political murder count on the rise — unless. . .
CNBC invokes a specter:
For signs of bubble, look no further than LBOs
Leveraged buyouts for both big and midsize companies are approaching debt levels last experienced in 2007.
USA TODAY delivers the chop:
Financial firms cutting thousands of jobs
Financial firms are cutting tens of thousands of jobs because of a slowdown in the mortgage business, the sluggish economy, the growth of online banking and new regulations.
CNBC tests the water:
Fed sets tough tests in annual bank health war games
Banks in the United States will have to test whether they can survive a halving of the stock market during a severe U.S. recession, the Federal Reserve said on Friday, as it set the rules for next year’s model runs to gauge the health of the financial system.
And another kind of bank faces another kind of stress test, congressionally induced. Via USA TODAY:
Food stamp cuts create high demand for food bank supplies
The holiday season is approaching in November and December, the time of year when most food banks receive more than half of their donations for the year.
The flip side: More people turn to food banks for help during that time, too.
Food banks across the country, stretched thin in the aftermath of the recession, are bracing for more people coming through their doors in the wake of cuts to the federal food stamp program.
From Salon, unindicted co-conspirators:
How Democrats enable California’s pension slashing
New “bipartisan” initiative allows state and local governments to reduce retirement benefits for current employees
And AlterNet notes the bottom line:
America’s Greatest Shame: Child Poverty Rises and Food Stamps Cut While Billionaires Boom
Why do we put up with such injustices?
North of the border with CBC News and an unpleasant senior moment:
Job hunt posing big challenges for people over 50
Federal program aims to get older unemployed people through the dark days
Britain next, with a question from The Independent:
Is social deprivation to blame for 450 avoidable deaths from breast cancer each year?
Study reveals women from lower income groups are much more likely to be diagnosed later
More from BBC News:
Benefit delays ‘hit hundreds of terminally ill patients’
Hundreds of terminally ill cancer patients face waiting weeks and months for their income support because of a new payments system, a leading charity has warned.
If where the heart is is home, it’s in a metal box. From RT:
My home rocks, but it’s only a box: Soaring rents force Londoners to live in shipping containers
A London charity has imported steel containers from China and converted them into bargain basement homes, as part of a novel solution to try and solve homelessness amid soaring rents in the British capital.
And The Guardian has the ultimate in neoliberal desiderata: Paying lawyers to sell out their clients, [ideally, no doubt, to send them off to corporate owned-and-staffed prisons, preferably turning out products and services for profit]:
Lawyers to earn higher legal aid fees for early guilty pleas
Legal critics brand government moves to shave £220m off legal aid bill as perverse, unethical and counter-productive
The first of three items from the Irish Independent, first with a hint of things to come:
IMF: Lenders should set aside post-bailout funds for Ireland
Ireland’s lenders should set some money aside for when the country exits its bailout, which it should do step by step, a senior International Monetary Fund official said today.
The Irish Independent again, this time with a promise:
James Reilly pledges free GP care for every citizen by 2016
MINISTER for Health James Reilly has said that the government is ‘committed’ to providing free universal primary care for the entire nation within the next three years.
And the Irish Independent covers the Prime Minister’s underboss getting blown back by angry public protests after stuffing coal in Christmas stockings:
Now Tanaiste calls for Revenue U-turn on home ‘tax grab’
TANAISTE Eamon Gilmore has piled the pressure on the Revenue Commissioners to abandon their pre-Christmas tax grab on homeowners.
And from the Irish Times, legalizing Hollywood and the Top 40:
Blasphemy offence a ‘dead letter’, constitutional convention told
Law’s requirement on causing outrage makes it ‘very difficult’ to prosecute
Germany next, feeling the heat from New Europe:
IMF backs US criticism of German surplus
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Thursday echoed US criticism of Germany’s trade surpluses which the US Treasury said have been having an adverse impact on European economies during the crisis.
To Spain with an upbeat from the Global Times:
Fitch revises Spain’s outlook to stable
Fitch Ratings, a London-based credit rating company, Friday revised Spain’s sovereign credit rating outlook to stable from negative and affirmed long-term rating at BBB.
From thinkSPAIN, going for the gold in the ivory tower [just like UC]:
Spanish universities have 6,000 Chinese students on their books and aim to double the number
SPAIN’S education ministry is hoping to encourage more undergraduates from China to study in the Mediterranean country – but they are mostly put off by the fact that it takes so long for Spanish colleges to process qualifications.
The Toronto Globe and Mail takes us to Italy with a somber declaration:
Italy’s economic woes pose existential threat to euro zone
Xinhua casts a similarly sinister pall:
News Analysis: Italian youth mired in unemployment, analysts warn of lost generations
In times of economic recession, with the number of unemployed people increasing sharply, young Italians not only are the first targets of job cuts but are faced with the choice of building an uncertain future in their home country or seeking their fulfillment abroad.
After the jump, Greek meltdown continues, mixed Latin and Asian numbers, a Chinese neoliberal acceleration and the latest chapter of Fukushimapocalypse Now!. . . Continue reading