Aug 24


Aug 23, 2014

Mag. 6.6 Valparaiso, Chile and Mag. 5.3 Hofn, Iceland….

Website: sott.net
Source credit: USA Today, USGS
Map credit: USGS
Photography credit: belongs to their respective owner(s) and not to me..
Article Links:
http://www.sott.net/article/284340-6-…
http://www.sott.net/article/284341-US…

Original website, article link: USATODAY
http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/wo…

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Jun 25

GOT FOOD?


polar-bear

- “Megablizzard” forecast for eastern Australia (Ice Age Now, June 23, 2014):

“Best snowfalls in a decade.” Maybe the “storm of the century.”

- Aleutian volcanoes waking up (Ice Age Now, June 23, 2014):

Five volcanoes now simultaneously active, the most activity in 26 years.

- Record snowfall in Norway (Ice Age Now, June 23, 2014):

First time since records began that snow has been recorded in June.

- Surprise Snowstorm Clobbers Rockies (Ice Age Now, June 23, 2014):

June 20, 2014 – “A bizarre June snowstorm hit Glacier National Park in Montana and parts of Utah and Idaho this week,

- Confirmed – Earth’s protective magnetic shield is weakening (Ice Age Now, June 22, 2014):

The most dramatic declines are occurring over the Western Hemisphere, says European Space Agency. Continue reading »

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May 19

- Chilean Activist Burns $500 Million of Student Loan Documents in Protest Against Debt Serfdom (Liberty Blitzkrieg, May 19, 2014):

This story struck a particular chord with me considering my mother left Chile for the United States back in the early 70′s after Salvador Allende was elected President. She was able to instinctively see the writing on the wall, and got out ahead of the political chaos, military coup and dictatorship that followed.

Beyond my own person connection, I find this to be a very important story in that it further highlights the fact that the current war/civil unrest cycle is an interconnected global phenomenon. Since the parasitic Central Bank driven financial system is more or less entrenched in every country on earth, every country on earth is experiencing increased concentrations of wealth into the pockets of a handful of oligarchs. Meanwhile, those nations which heretofore had a middle class are finding that this entire socio-economic class is disappearing into the dustbin of history via a variety of methods, not the least of which is criminal quantities of student loans. These loans are pushing an entire generation into inescapable serfdom, while many university administrators are enriching themselves at their expense.

So it appears student loan based debt serfdom is also a major issue in Chile, and one activist, known as “Papas Fritas,” decided to take matters into his own hands. During a takeover at Universidad del Mar, he was able to get his hands on $500 million of student debt, which he subsequently torched. Continue reading »

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Apr 01

chile_earthquake

- 8.0-Magnitude Earthquake Hits Off Chile; Tsunami Strikes Coast (ABC News, April 1, 2014)

- Massive 8.0 Quake Hits Near Chile Coast, Tsunami Warning Issued; Residents Evacuating (Zerohedge, April 1, 2014)

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Mar 17

- Chile: coast evacuated after strong earthquake hits (Guardian, March 17, 2014):

Authorities say more than 100,000 people asked to vacate some coastal areas following 6.7 magnitude earthquake

A strong 6.7-magnitude earthquake shook Chile’s northern Pacific shore on Sunday, and authorities said more than 100,000 people were evacuated from some coastal areas as a precaution. Only minor damage was reported.

The US Geological Survey originally reported the quake at a 7.0 magnitude but later downgraded it. The tremor struck offshore at 4.16pm at a depth of 20km. Its epicentre was 60km northwest of the Chilean port of Iquique.

The USGS said that was followed by a 6.2-magnitude quake, one of 5.1 and three of 4.9.

Continue reading »

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Jan 27

Chilean Farmer Defeats Monsanto In Landmark Legal Victory
José Pizarro Montoya, a 38-year-old landless farmer from Melipilla (Santiago, Chile), and ex GMO producer (season 2009-2010) is the first and perhaps the only Latin American who has won a lawsuit against Monsanto/ANASAC for breach of contract.

- Destitute Chilean Farmer Defeats Monsanto in Landmark Legal Victory (Sustainable Pulse, Jan 23, 2014):

A landless Chilean farmer has won a landmark lawsuit against Monsanto and thus exposed the dangers posed by the transnational corporation to the whole country.

Chilean farmer wins lawsuit against Monsanto and exposes the company at Chilean Government’s GMO seminar 
By Lucía Sepúlveda Ruiz
Lucía Sepúlveda Ruiz: periodismo sanador, January 22 2014
periodismosanador.blogspot.com/2014/01/agricultor-chileno-gano-demanda.html
Translation: Ignacia Guzmán Zuloaga
Slightly edited by GMWatch

He tried and failed to break the news at a GMO Seminar which took place on January 22 and was organized by Chilean Agriculture Secretary, Luis Mayol. There, international and national speakers preached about the goodness of GMO crops. Pizarro only wanted to speak out to the audience and share that he did not recommend any farmer to work for Monsanto growing GMO seeds for export, because they could end up ruined as he did, besides damaging the soil. Continue reading »

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Dec 10

- Deep divisions over TPP as US pressures to close controversial deal – WikiLeaks (RT, Dec 9, 2013):

The US is ramping up pressure to secure a Trans-Pacific Trade Deal with conditions that could undermine the national interests of nations involved. WikiLeaks documents say talks are “paralyzed,” with the US refusing to compromise on disputed issues.

Anti-secrecy group WikiLeaks has released two documents revealing the state of negotiations for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). The deal in question includes 12 countries – the United States, Japan, Mexico, Canada, Australia, Malaysia, Chile, Singapore, Peru, Vietnam, New Zealand and Brunei – which represent more than 40 percent of the world’s gross domestic product.

Continue reading »

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Aug 20

Dr. Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury during President Reagan’s first term. He was Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal. He has held numerous academic appointments, including the William E. Simon Chair, Center for Strategic and International Studies, Georgetown University, and Senior Research Fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford University.

- Growing Up In America (Paul Craig Roberts, Aug 19, 2013):

Things Are Bad And Getting Worse

Terrible things are happening faster than we can keep up with them. Monsanto, widely regarded as a criminal enterprise, is expanding its monopoly over seeds and food production into Chile and Latin America. http://rt.com/news/chile-protest-monsanto-law-634/ Monsanto has given up for now on monopolizing Europe’s agriculture, but has brought the EU around to allowing it to market GMO food products. Money speaks, which perhaps is the reason that Chile’s former president, Michelle Bachelet, introduced the pro-Monsanto legislation that one of the legislative chambers has passed. There are mass demonstrations in Chile against the legislation that destroys Chile’s sovereignty over its food production, but just as Monsanto can purchase the US government it also can purchase the Chilean government. In our day and time, governments are just another commodity to be bought and sold by powerful corporations.

Continue reading »

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Jul 02

This is for all those who …

… still don’t know what has been reported here since the beginning of the Fukushima nuclear disaster.

… think that the Fukushima disaster is over.

… think that Fukushima is far away and doesn’t affect them.

… still trust our government & the mainstream media.

For my readers this is just a reminder to stay alert.


- Shocking Plane Radiation On Flight From Chile To US (Rense, July 1, 2013):

This is STAGGERINGLY bad news and shows, clearly and positively, that Fukushima Radiation is THICK in the atmosphere above even the Southern Hemisphere. It gets worse over North America and the U.S.

Note…and note carefully – a CPM (Counts Per Minute) reading of 100 is a mandatory HAZMAT Quarantine EMERGENCY in the State of California. Get that? The shocking readings shown in the photos below are what the passengers were breathing and fully-exposed to during the flights from Chile to Atlanta and then across the US to Portland, Oregon.

Continue reading »

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Mar 06

FYI. (And I certainly do NOT agree on those recommended countries being the ’5 best countries’, but it gives you ideas what you could do besides sitting and waiting for the hammer to fall.)


- 5 Best Countries to Move to Before Collapse of the West (Activist Post, March 5, 2013):

It’s been two-and-a-half years since we posted a similar article to this. In just that short time, the national average gas price has gone up from $2.86/gallon to $3.72/gallon, a 30% increase. This is our updated list of where to bug out to.

That which mathematically cannot continue will not continue. Western countries, led by the United States and Europe, are in deep economic trouble. Massive debt levels are strangling their economies, and once great nations like Greece and Spain have been reduced to third-world status with staggering unemployment levels and almost daily violent riots.

Continue reading »

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Nov 28

- The Giant Currency Superstorm That Is Coming To The Shores Of America When The Dollar Dies (Economic Collapse, Nov 27, 2012):

By recklessly printing, borrowing and spending money, our authorities are absolutely shredding confidence in the U.S. dollar.  The rest of the world is watching this nonsense, and at some point they are going to give up on the U.S. dollar and throw their hands up in the air.  When that happens, it is going to be absolutely catastrophic for the U.S. economy.  Right now, we export a lot of our inflation.  Each year, we buy far more from the rest of the world than they buy from us, and so the rest of the world ends up with giant piles of U.S. dollars.  This works out pretty well for them, because the U.S. dollar is the primary reserve currency of the world and is used in international trade far more than any other currency is.  Back in 1999, the percentage of foreign exchange reserves in U.S. dollars peaked at 71 percent, and since then it has slid back to 62.2 percent.  But that is still an overwhelming amount.  We can print, borrow and spend like crazy because the rest of the world is there to soak up our excess dollars because they need them to trade with one another.  But what will happen someday if the rest of the world decides to reject the U.S. dollar?  At that point we would see a tsunami of U.S. dollars come flooding back to this country.  Just take a moment and think of the worst superstorm that you can possibly imagine, and then replace every drop of rain with a dollar bill.  The giant currency superstorm that will eventually hit this nation will be far worse than that. Continue reading »

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Jul 18

- 11 International Agreements That Are Nails In The Coffin Of The Petrodollar (The Economic Collapse, July 18, 2012):

Is the petrodollar dead?  Well, not yet, but the nails are being hammered into the coffin even as you read this.  For decades, most of the nations of the world have used the U.S. dollar to buy oil and to trade with each other.  In essence, the U.S. dollar has been acting as a true global currency.  Virtually every country on the face of the earth has needed big piles of U.S. dollars for international trade.  This has ensured a huge demand for U.S. dollars and U.S. government debt.  This demand for dollars has kept prices and interest rates low, and it has given the U.S. government an incredible amount of power and leverage around the globe.  Right now, U.S. dollars make up more than 60 percent of all foreign currency reserves in the world.  But times are changing.  Over the past couple of years there has been a whole bunch of international agreements that have made the U.S. dollar less important in international trade.  The mainstream media in the United States has been strangely quiet about all of these agreements, but the truth is that they are setting the stage for a fundamental shift in the way that trade is conducted around the globe.  When the petrodollar dies, it is going to have an absolutely devastating impact on the U.S. economy.  Sadly, most Americans are totally clueless regarding what is about to happen to the dollar. Continue reading »

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Jul 16

- After Creating Dollar Exclusion Zones In Asia And South America, China Set To Corner Africa Next (ZeroHedge, July 15, 2012):

By now it really, really should be obvious. While the insolvent “developed world” is furiously fighting over who gets to pay the bill for 30 years of unsustainable debt accumulation and how to pretend that the modern ‘crony capitalist for some and communist for others‘ system isn’t one flap of a butterfly’s wings away from full on collapse mode, China is slowly taking over the world’s real assets. As a reminder: here is a smattering of our headlines on the topic from the last year: World’s Second (China) And Third Largest (Japan) Economies To Bypass Dollar, Engage In Direct Currency Trade“, “China, Russia Drop Dollar In Bilateral Trade“, “China And Iran To Bypass Dollar, Plan Oil Barter System“, “India and Japan sign new $15bn currency swap agreement“, “Iran, Russia Replace Dollar With Rial, Ruble in Trade, Fars Says“, “India Joins Asian Dollar Exclusion Zone, Will Transact With Iran In Rupees“, ‘The USD Trap Is Closing: Dollar Exclusion Zone Crosses The Pacific As Brazil Signs China Currency Swap“, and finally, Chile Is Latest Country To Launch Renminbi Swaps And Settlement“, we now get the inevitable: Central bank pledges financial push in Africa.” To summarize: first Asia, next Latin America, and now Africa.

Yep: the Yuan may not be the reserve currency by default, but at this rate China will have bilateral, read USD-bypassing relations, with all countries in Asia, South America and shortly Africa (where none other than Goldman Sachs has been pushing harder than anyone). Once the entire world is trading in CNY, it will be merely a matter of flipping the switch and all those fancy three-letter economic theories that explain why the uber-welfare state works just becayse the US can print an infinity+1 in debt, will all suddenly find themselves completely and totally bidless.

From China Daily:

China is to promote the yuan’s use in settling trade and investment with Africa, and encourage the more active development of Chinese financial institutions across the continent, a senior central bank official said on Friday.

Li Dongrong, assistant governor of the People’s Bank of China, said Africa has the capability of becoming a new hub of international capital flow, and the yuan’s use there should be further improved in accordance with rising demand for the currency there.

“We will continue to encourage domestic financial institutions to increase their presence and business across the continent,” Li told delegates at the Forum on China-Africa Financial Cooperation in Beijing, adding that the cooperation potential between the two sides is huge, as Africa’s economy continues to take off. Continue reading »

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Jun 19

See also:

- Egan-Jones Ratings Company Downgrades Spain’s Credit Rating To CCC+ (Uganda’s Credit Rating Is B!)


- Spain May Not Be Uganda, But Germany Is Chile (ZeroHedge, June 18, 2012):

While we discussed the definitive new world geography last week, it appears the CDS market has decided to add a new parallel for us, Germany is now Chile (in terms of 10Y restructuring and devaluation risk). As a reminder, Germany’s credit risk has risen by almost 50% in the last 3 months to record highs, and has converged higher towards Europe’s GDP-weighted average sovereign risk in the last 2-3 weeks.

and as a reminder – here is Germany’s 10Y CDS (interestingly we rallied modestly today – perhaps on the back of Merkel’s restatement that there will be no new aid package – or more risk transfer)… Continue reading »

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Jul 16

Related info:

- Global Earthquake And Volcano Overview: Phenomenal Worldwide UPTICK Continues (07/13/2011)



YouTube Added: 15.07.2011

http://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/recenteqsww/Quakes/usc0004ymd.php

Earthquake Details
This event has been reviewed by a seismologist.
Magnitude 6.0
Date-Time Saturday, July 16, 2011 at 00:26:13 UTC
Friday, July 15, 2011 at 08:26:13 PM at epicenter
Time of Earthquake in other Time Zones

Location 33.798°S, 72.074°W
Depth 22.9 km (14.2 miles)
Region OFFSHORE VALPARAISO, CHILE
Distances 47 km (29 miles) WSW of San Antonio, Valparaiso, Chile
94 km (58 miles) SSW of Valparaiso, Valparaiso, Chile
128 km (79 miles) WNW of Rancagua, Libertador O’Higgins, Chile
136 km (84 miles) WSW of SANTIAGO, Region Metropolitana, Chile

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Jul 12

See also:

- Argentina’s Economic Collapse (Documentary)


- Inflation, Hyperinflation and Real Estate (or, The Lessons of The Great Hernán P.) (Gonzalo Lira, February 12, 2011):

“Hyperinflation accompanied by a housing collapse is simply impossible—by definition.”
- None-too-clever financial blogger.

Most people in the advanced economies—including most economists—really don’t have any idea what inflation and hyperinflation is. They don’t have a clue because they haven’t lived through it, or were children when it happened in the States and in Europe during the Seventies.

Continue reading »

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Jun 15


Added: 15.06.2011

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Jun 05

- Puyehue volcano in Chile erupts, prompting mass evacuation (Guardian, June 5 2011):

Thousands of people have been evacuated from their homes after a volcano which has been dormant for decades started erupting in southern Chile.

Large columns of smoke reached more than six miles from the crater of the Puyehue volcano, which lies about 500 miles south of the capital, Santiago.

Continue reading »

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Jun 03

- Global Earthquake and Volcano Overview (05/30/2011)

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Mar 01

- Bahraini protesters move to parliament building (Reuters):

MANAMA (Reuters) – Bahrainis campaigning for democratic reforms in the Gulf Arab state staged a protest outside the U.S. ally’s parliament building on Monday, demanding that all its members resign over protester deaths.

Seven people were killed and hundreds wounded in protests earlier this month by Bahrainis mainly from the majority Shi’ite Muslim community who complain of repression by the Sunni monarchy and Sunni ruling elite.

“We came to this parliament to say that you represent the people and you represent us — take an honourable position over the killings by the army,” said Mirza al-Shihabi, one of around 500 protesters outside the building in central Manama.

- Oman protests spread, road to port blocked (Reuters):

(Reuters) – Demonstrators blocked roads to a main port in northern Oman and looted a nearby supermarket on Monday, part of protests to demand more jobs and political reform that have spread to the sultanate’s capital.

A doctor said six people had been killed in clashes between stone-throwing protesters and police on Sunday in the northern industrial town of Sohar. Oman’s health minister said one person had been killed and 20 wounded.

Hundreds of protesters blocked access to an industrial area that includes the port, a refinery and aluminium factory. A port spokeswoman said exports of refined oil products of about 160,000 barrels per day (bpd) from the port were unaffected.

“We want to see the benefit of our oil wealth distributed evenly,” one protester yelled over a loudhailer near the port. “We want to see a scale-down of expatriates in Oman so more jobs can be created for Omanis.”

- Congo coup attempt leaves six dead, say authorities (Guardian):

Six people were killed in the Democratic Republic of Congo in what authorities said was a coup attempt on the presidential palace in the capital Kinshasa.

“We have witnessed a coup attempt,” the information minister, Lambert Mende, said.

“A group of heavily armed people attacked the presidential palace. They were stopped at the first roadblock. Our soldiers fought with them, arrested some of them and six people were killed.”

- China’s jasmine revolution: police but no protesters line streets of Beijing (Guardian):

Police in Beijing and other cities mounted a major show of force following an anonymous call for protests inspired by the Middle East uprisings.

A US journalist was punched and kicked in the face and more than a dozen other journalists manhandled, detained or delayed as they covered the events which revealed official anxiety over similar protests against authoritarian rule in China.

- Bloomberg Journalist Assaulted as China Heightens Security (Blommberg):

A Bloomberg News journalist was assaulted yesterday in Beijing while covering the deployment of police in response to online calls for protests in the Chinese capital.

At least five men in plain clothes, who appeared to be security personnel, punched and kicked the reporter at Beijing’s Wangfujing shopping street at 2:45 p.m. local time yesterday. They also took the video camera he was carrying and detained him in a roadside store.

Uniformed police arrived after the attack and escorted the journalist to a nearby station where he filed a report of the attack before seeking treatment for his injuries at a local hospital. Police returned the video camera while the reporter was at the station, saying a passerby had found it.

- China’s working poor not yet ready to revolt (Guardian):

Like the Tunisian whose self-immolation sparked a revolt, Xu Mingao is a young street vendor. Fourteen-hour days selling flatbread in Zhongguancun – the capital’s Silicon Valley – earn him about 7,500 yuan (£709) a year.

Home is a tiny cubicle in a dusty, hastily constructed neighbourhood where adverts pasted to lampposts seek workers who can “eat bitterness” – endure the grind.

But the 30-year-old is “pretty happy” with his life: “The difference [from the old days] is huge. When I was small my family had to borrow money for my schooling and we wore hand-me-downs,” he said.

He and his wife have built a house back in their home town in Anhui with their earnings and hope for an office career for their boy.

- Chile President faces protests a year after quake (Guardian):

Associated Press= SANTIAGO, Chile (AP) — President Sebastian Pinera marked Sunday’s anniversary of one of the largest earthquakes in recorded history by praising his government’s progress on reconstruction and calling for national unity.

Instead, his political opponents staged protests and questioned his numbers.

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Jan 18


Added: 17. January 2011

Together with his good-old friend Agustin Edwards Eastman, Mr. Rockefeller takes a quick vacation almost every year in the south of Chile. Both are well known for working with the CIA during the 1973 coup against Salvador Allende and manipulating public opinion through a newspaper called “El Mercurio”. Edwards is also known for being a descendant of (chilean elitist) Agustín Edwards McClure, who served as President of the League of Nations from 1922-23.

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Jul 26

Don’t miss: Al Gore’s Enormous Carbon Footprint


Warmists may be winning the big grants, but they’re not winning the argument

chile_cattle
Herding cattle in Chile as South America suffers one of its coldest winters for years (Reuters)

Ever more risibly desperate become the efforts of the believers in global warming to hold the line for their religion, after the battering it was given last winter by all those scandals surrounding the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

One familiar technique they use is to attribute to global warming almost any unusual weather event anywhere in the world. Last week, for instance, it was reported that Russia has recently been experiencing its hottest temperatures and longest drought for 130 years. The head of the Russian branch of WWF, the environmental pressure group, was inevitably quick to cite this as evidence of climate change, claiming that in future “such climate abnormalities will only become more frequent”. He didn’t explain what might have caused the similar hot weather 130 years ago.

Meanwhile, notably little attention has been paid to the disastrous chill which has been sweeping South America thanks to an inrush of air from the Antarctic, killing hundreds in the continent’s coldest winter for years. Continue reading »

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Apr 12

WASHINGTON — As secretary of state, Henry Kissinger canceled a U.S. warning against carrying out international political assassinations that was to have gone to Chile and two neighboring nations just days before a former ambassador was killed by Chilean agents on Washington’s Embassy Row in 1976, a newly released State Department cable shows.

Whether Kissinger played a role in blocking the delivery of the warning against assassination to the governments of Chile, Argentina and Uruguay has long been a topic of controversy.

Discovered in recent weeks by the National Security Archive, a non-profit research organization, the Sept. 16, 1976 cable is among tens of thousands of declassified State Department documents recently made available to the public.

In 1976, the South American nations of Chile, Argentina and Uruguay were engaged in a program of repression code-named Operation Condor that targeted those governments’ political opponents throughout Latin America, Europe and even the United States.

Based on information from the CIA, the U.S. State Department became concerned that Condor included plans for political assassination around the world. The State Department drafted a plan to deliver a stern message to the three governments not to engage in such murders. Continue reading »

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Mar 28

‘Fascism is coming to America’


Added: 28th Mar 10

More from Gerald Celente:

- Gerald Celente: ‘It’s the greatest bank robbery in world history and the banks are doing the robbing.’

- Gerald Celente: ‘The Crash is Coming in 2010.’

- The No.1 Trend Forecaster Gerald Celente: Financial Mafia Controlling US and Wall Street

- Survivor, America: ‘It’s Only Going to Get Worse,’ Gerald Celente Says

- The No.1 Trend Forecaster Gerald Celente: The Terror And The Crash of 2010

If Nostradamus were alive today, he’d have a hard time keeping up with Gerald Celente.
– New York Post

When CNN wants to know about the Top Trends, we ask Gerald Celente.
– CNN Headline News

There’s not a better trend forecaster than Gerald Celente. The man knows what he’s talking about.
- CNBC

Those who take their predictions seriously … consider the Trends Research Institute.
– The Wall Street Journal

A network of 25 experts whose range of specialties would rival many university faculties.
– The Economist

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Mar 01

The earthquakes in Chile, Haiti and China were (probably) caused by H.A.A.R.P.



Added: 27. Februar 2010

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Feb 27

A milder earthquake hit Japan:

- Japan Earthquake: Tsunami Warnings Downgraded After 7.0 Quake Off Japan Coast (Huffington Post)


chile-earthquake-04
Rescuers searched for victims and survivors after an apartment complex collapsed in Concepcion.

chile-earthquake-05
A woman sat in front a quake-damaged house in Talca, Chile. Residents were also jolted by at least 20 aftershocks measuring over 5.0 on the magnitude scale, with one topping 6.9.

chile-earthquake-02
A photo of Santiago, Chile after the quake. Uploaded by Twitter user @Gonzalezcarcey.

UPDATE: 8:25 a.m. — 1,000 times more powerful than the Haiti earthquake– From the New York Times:

Phone lines were down in Concepcion as of 7:30 a.m. and no reports were coming out of that area. The quake in Chile was 1,000 times more powerful than the magnitude 7.0 earthquake that caused widespread damage in Haiti on Jan 12, killing at least 230,000, earthquake experts reported on CNN International.

UPDATE: 8:00 a.m. — 78 and rising – AP now reports that the death toll is at 78 and rising. Officials have no information yet on number of injured.

chile-earthquake-03
“Calm after #terremoto. Impressive to see Divine Church Providence without cupola.” Photo uploaded to Twitpic by Twitter user @HMartinez.

UPDATE: 6:43 a.m. — 47 dead – Reuters now reports that 47 people have died in the quake.

President Michele Bachelet has declared a “state of catastrophe,” according to the Associated Press:

SANTIAGO, Chile – A massive 8.8-magnitude earthquake struck Chile early Saturday, collapsing buildings, killing at least 16 people and downing phone lines. President Michele Bachelet declared a “state of catastrophe” in central Chile and said the death toll was rising.Tsunami warnings were issued over a wide area, including South America, Hawaii, Australia and New Zealand, Japan, the Philippines, Russia and many Pacific islands.

“We have had a huge earthquake, with some aftershocks,” Bachelet said, appealing from an emergency response center for Chileans to remain calm. “Despite this, the system is
functioning. People should remain calm. We’re doing everything we can with all the forces we have. Any information we will share immediately.”

Bachelet said early reports were that 16 people had been killed, and “without a doubt, with an earthquake of this magnitude, there will be more deaths.”

In the 2 1/2 hours following the 90-second quake, the U.S. Geological Survey reported 11 aftershocks, of which five measured 6.0 or above.

She urged people to avoid traveling in the dark, since traffic lights are down, to avoid causing more fatalities.

The quake hit 200 miles (325 kilometers) southwest of the capital, Santiago, at a depth of 22 miles (35 kilometers) at 3:34 a.m. (0634 GMT; 1:34 a.m. EST), the U.S. Geological Survey reported.

The epicenter was just 70 miles (115 kilometers) from Concepcion, Chile’s second-largest city, where more than 200,000 people live along the Bio Bio river, and 60 miles from the ski town of Chillan, a gateway to Andean ski resorts that was destroyed in a 1939 earthquake.

In Santiago, the capital, modern buildings are built to withstand earthquakes, but many older ones were heavily damaged, including the Nuestra Senora de la Providencia church, whose bell tower collapsed. An apartment building’s two-level parking lot also flattened onto the ground floor, smashing about 50 cars whose alarms and horns rang incessantly. A bridge just outside the capital also collapsed, and at least one car flipped upside down.

In the coastal city of Vina del Mar, the earthquake struck just as people were leaving a disco, Julio Alvarez told Radio Cooperativa in Santiago. “It was very bad, people were screaming, some people were running, others appeared paralyzed. I was one of them.”

Bachelet said she was declaring a “state of catastrophe” in 3 central regions of the country, and that while emergency responders were waiting for first light to get details, it was evident that damage was extensive.

UPDATE: 5:56 a.m. — 17 dead – At least 17 people have died in Chile’s earthquake, according to radio reports from Santiago. Reuters:

Local radio said 17 people were killed and President Michelle Bachelet confirmed six deaths, saying more were possible. Telephone and power lines were down, making a quick damage assessment difficult in the early morning darkness.”Never in my life have I experienced a quake like this, it’s like the end of the world,” one man told local television from the city of Temuco, where the quake damaged buildings and forced staff to evacuate the regional hospital.

UPDATE: 4:49 a.m. — Live broadcast – A USTREAM webcast of CNN’s live coverage of the Chile earthquake: Continue reading »

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Feb 15

“Global food Catastrophe”

“The world is heading for a drop in agricultural production of 20 to 40 percent, depending on the severity and length of the current global droughts. Food producing nations are imposing food export restrictions. Food prices will soar, and, in poor countries with food deficits, millions will starve.”

This article is a must-read.


After reading about the droughts in two major agricultural countries, China and Argentina, I decided to research the extent other food producing nations were also experiencing droughts. This project ended up taking a lot longer than I thought. 2009 looks to be a humanitarian disaster around much of the world

To understand the depth of the food Catastrophe that faces the world this year, consider the graphic below depicting countries by USD value of their agricultural output, as of 2006.

Now, consider the same graphic with the countries experiencing droughts highlighted.

The countries that make up two thirds of the world’s agricultural output are experiencing drought conditions. Whether you watch a video of the drought in China, Australia, Africa, South America, or the US, the scene will be the same: misery, ruined crop, and dying cattle.

China

The drought in Northern China, the worst in 50 years, is worsening, and summer harvest is now threatened. The area of affected crops has expanded to 161 million mu (was 141 million last week), and 4.37 million people and 2.1 million livestock are facing drinking water shortage. The scarcity of rain in some parts of the north and central provinces is the worst in recorded history.

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May 29

BRASILIA: South America is thinking of creating a common currency and a central bank along the lines of those in the European Union’s eurozone, Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva said yesterday.

The idea is a logical next step following the signing last Friday of a treaty creating a Union of South American States that aims to promote joint regional customs and defense policies, Lula said during his weekly radio broadcast.

“Many things still haven’t been realised. We are now going to create a Bank of South America. We are going to move forward so in the future we’ll have a single central bank, a common currency,” he said.

But, he added: “This is a process. It won’t be something that happens quickly.”
Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, Uruguay and Venezuela all signed up to the Unasur treaty creating the regional union during a ceremony in Brasilia last Friday. Continue reading »

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May 08

SANTIAGO, Chile (AP) — The long-dormant Chaiten volcano blasted ash some 20 miles (30 kilometers) into the Andean sky on Tuesday, forcing the last of thousands to evacuate and fouling a huge stretch of the South American continent.

A thick column of ash climbed into the stratosphere and blew eastward for hundreds of miles (kilometers) over Patagonia to the Atlantic Ocean, closing schools and a regional airport. Chilean and Argentine citizens were advised to wear masks to avoid breathing the dangerous fallout.

Chilean officials ordered the total evacuation of Chaiten, a small provincial capital in an area of lakes and glacier-carved fjords just six miles (10 kilometers) from the roiling cloud.

Interior Minister Edmundo Perez said anyone still in the area should “urgently head to ships in the bay to be evacuated.”

More than 4,000 people were evacuated over the weekend and 350 more headed out Tuesday.

Also emptied was the soot-coated border town of Futaleufu, about 75 miles (120 kilometers) from the volcano.

The five-day-old eruption is the first in 9,370 years, said Charles Stern, a volcanologist at the University of Colorado-Boulder who has studied Chaiten.

He said the nearby town could end up buried, much like the Roman city of Pompeii following Mount Vesuvius’ eruption in 79 A.D. Volcanic material from Chaiten’s last eruption measured up to 5 feet in places.

“What happens after today is anybody’s guess,” Stern said. Continue reading »

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