The number of jobs postings on LinkedIn could be a terrible sign for the economy (Source businessinsider.com) The jobs data in the US has recently taken a nasty spill. Last week it was an ugly jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. We’re confronted with a sharp and ongoing deterioration of a leading indicator of the labor market: temporary jobs. They rise and fall months ahead of the overall number of jobs. The sector peaked in December 2015 at 2.94 million. It shed 21,000 jobs in May, and 63,800 since December. This is also what happened in 2007 and 2000, at the eve of recessions. This week, it was the Fed’s very own Labor Market Conditions Index which dropped to the worst level since the Financial Crisis, a level to which it typically drops shortly before the onset of a recession – and shortly before employment gives way altogether. So now comes LinkedIn, or rather MKM Partners, an equity and economics research firm, with a report in HYPERLINK “http://www.barrons.com/articles/linkedins-online-job-postings-may-be-worst-since-2009-1465298237” \t “_blank” Barron’s about LinkedIn – “While we like LinkedIn’s long-term prospects and believe that sentiment on the company’s opportunity is overly negative, we remain at Neutral on the stock,” it says. Rather than disputing the deterioration in the labor market or throwing some uplifting tidbits into the mix, the report highlights yet another 2009-type super-ugly data point. LinkedIn has some, let’s say, issues. Its stock has gotten hammered, including a dizzying plunge in February. It’s now down over 50% from its high in February 2015. The company lost money in 2014, 2015, and in the first quarter 2016 despite soaring revenues. And that revenue growth may now be at risk. But we aren’t concerned about the stock or the company. We’re concerned about that 2009-type super-ugly employment data point. The online jobs data is getting “incrementally worse,” the report explained: After 73 consecutive months of year-over-year growth, online jobs postings have been in decline since February. May was by far the worst month since January 2009, down 285k from April and down 552k from a year ago. Online job postings are not a direct revenue driver for LinkedIn. We do however believe it is a reflection of overall hiring activity and should be considered a check on demand vibrancy
Jamaican attorney general: Flying rainbow flag at U.S. embassy disrespectful (Source upi.com)
Jamaica’s attorney general called the U.S. embassy’s flying of the rainbow flag following the shootings in Orlando, Fla., disrespectful of Jamaican law. The rainbow flag, symbolic of the LGBT community, was flown at U.S. missions around the world after a gunman killed 49 people at a gay nightclub in Orlando on Sunday. The pride flag jamaica-gleaner.com/article/lead-stories/20160615/flag-fuss-local-christian-groups-support-malahoo-forte-despite” was raised at the embassy in Kingston, though Jamaica law criminalizes gay sex but not homosexuality. Rights activists have noted a strong anti-gay culture in the country. A social media comment by Jamaican Attorney General Malahoo Forte, since deleted, read “I strongly condemn Orlando Night Club Shooting but find it disrespectful of Jamaica’s laws to have Rainbow Flag flown here.” The U.S. embassy replied: “We’re listening. Explain the legal reasoning? It was an attack of terror !!and!! hate, targeting the LGBT community.” Forte’s comments were condemned on social media, where she was accused of bigotry. Two Christian groups in Jamaica, the Lawyers’ Christian Fellowship and the Coalition for a Healthy Society, decried the shooting but defended her opinion.
Deep in Madagascar, converts arise from a cold river mikveh (Source thejc.com) June 3 marked the 76th anniversary of the Madagascar Plan. Conceived as an alternative means to achieving the Final Solution, the plan called for the mass-deportation of European Jewry to Vichy-controlled Madagascar, where those who did not die en route would be exterminated far from the prying eyes of the international community. Now, a just over three quarters of a century later, Madagascar is once more in the news for Jews, this time as a place of rebirth rather than extermination. Over the past five years, a novel Jewish community has taken root in Madagascar, the remote Indian Ocean Island better known for lemurs, chameleons, vanilla and a movie about escaped zoo animals. The community emerged five and half years ago when members of various Christian Messianic sects splintered off and began to study the Torah and follow its precepts. In relative isolation, they taught themselves to daven in Sephardic-accented Hebrew and keep strict observance of the Sabbath and Holidays. Most restrict their diet to fish, dairy and vegetables in an effort to keep kosher. On May 13, this nascent community literally took the plunge and immersed themselves in the mikveh as the final step of converting to Judaism. Ashrey Dayves was the first of 121 Malagasy men, women and children to emerge from the cold river and formally convert in a halachic ceremony. The conversions were facilitated by Kulanu, a small, US-based NGO which specialises in supporting emerging and returning Jewish communities, but were initiated by the Malagasies themselves. Twelve of the newly converted couples also chose to reaffirm their vows with Jewish weddings, and the 10-day process culminated in a symposium on the ancestral connections between Madagascar and the Israelites. The conference featured a keynote address by Dr Tudor Parfitt, a scholar on the lost tribes of Israel, as well as a talk by a member of the royal family of Madagascar, Prince Ndriana Raboaroelina.
NATO to send troops to deter Russia, Putin orders snap checks (Source Reuters) Britain, Germany and the United States advanced plans on Tuesday to spearhead a new NATO force on Russia’s border from next year, and Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered snap checks on combat readiness across his armed forces. Weeks before a critical NATO summit in Warsaw, three of NATO’s biggest military powers said they would each command a battalion across the eastern flank to help deter any show of force such as that deployed by Moscow in Crimea in 2014. “Britain will lead one of the battalions,” British Defense Secretary Michael Fallon said at a meeting of NATO defense ministers, adding London will send up to 700 troops to the Baltic and Poland. “That should send a very strong signal of our determination to defend the Baltic states and Poland in the face of continued Russian aggression,” he said. In a reminder of Russia’s efforts to bolster its military readiness, its armed forces started carrying out spot checks on its units, as well of weapon and equipment depots. Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said the goal of the June 14-22 drill was to ensure the ability of his military to “carry out planned activities, including mobilization.” NATO’s battalions are part of a wider deterrent to be approved at the Warsaw summit on July 8. It will involve troops on rotation, warehoused equipment and a highly mobile force backed by NATO’s 40,000-strong rapid reaction unit. NATO hopes the complex plan can discourage Russia from orchestrating the kind of campaign used to annex Ukraine’s Crimea peninsula in February 2014 and which has left eastern allies nervous of their former Soviet overlord. While eastern allies welcome the deployments in NATO’s biggest military build-up since the end of the Cold War, they want more support to defend against Russia’s powerful arsenal. With a warning last week from a senior U.S. commander that the alliance would have only 72 hours notice of a missile or ground attack, Baltic nations and Poland want a sophisticated anti-missile shield to deter Russia from gaining the upper hand. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said NATO was also considering a Romanian offer to command a multinational brigade which could coordinate alliance training and possibly play a deterrent role. Russia sees NATO’s deterrence plans as hostile. Moscow’s envoy to the alliance has warned they threaten peace in central Europe. The Kremlin also says a U.S. ballistic missile shield, which Washington says is directed at protecting the alliance from Iran, is also escalating tensions.
Bilderberg 2016: World’s top brass meets in Dresden to talk migrants, Brexit and US elections (Source rt.com) The world’s most intriguing gathering, the Bilderberg Group, held in Dresden June 9 through 12, with the West’s rich and powerful among other things set to meditate on the migrant crisis, the next US president and UK’s referendum on leaving the EU. Some 126 high-powered figures from 20 countries have made it to the guest list, which the Group made public, along with the agenda of this year’s event. Combined, the two documents give a rather detailed scope on what exactly the attendees of the 64th Bilderberg conference will be mulling over during the four days. The agenda item “European unity” indicates that the upcoming UK vote on leaving the EU is to be among the hot topics of the conference, with such possibility threatening the future of the European Union, which as some believe was actually invented by the Bilderberg Group. During last year’s conference, Bilderberg was rather Bilderberg backs Hillary for 2016 presidency supportive of Hillary Clinton in her presidential claim, which leads to the conclusion that Donald Trump’s success in the GOP primaries will come under the Bilderberg spotlight. Moreover, anti-Trump Senator Lindsey Graham’s name on the guest list hints that the Group is to brood over how to prevent Trump from defeating Clinton. The Bilderberg Group’s first meeting was held in 1954. It’s become an annual event ever since, with some 120-150 politicians, bankers, media heads, business moguls and royalty invited to take part in discussing the most vital global problems. Every meeting is held under the Chatham House Rule that allows participants to use the information they received, but bans them from disclosing the identity and the affiliation of the person the information came from. Also as a break from official international summits and councils, no record is kept of who attendees meet or what exactly is discussed and they’re not required to propose any resolutions, vote or issue policy statements, which allows them time and opportunity to discuss and gather insights freely.
FAST-SPREADING GENETIC MUTATIONS POSE ECOLOGICAL RISK (Source nature.com)
Gene drives could be used to combat mosquito-borne diseases such as malaria. A technique that allows particular genes to spread rapidly through populations is not ready to be set loose in the wild, warns a committee convened by the US National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. In a report released on 8 June, the committee argued that such ‘gene drives’ pose complex ecological risks that are not yet fully understood. “It is not ready — and we are not ready — for any kind of release,” says Elizabeth Heitman, co-chair of the committee and a research integrity educator at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in Nashville, Tennessee. “There is a lot of work that needs to be done.” A gene drive could have unintended effects on the environment if it is unleashed in wild populations: removing one species of insect, for example, could endanger the animals that feed on it. Given this risk, the report also stressed the importance of layering multiple HYPERLINK “http://www.nature.com/news/safety-upgrade-found-for-gene-editing-technique-1.18799” methods of containment to prevent accidental release of engineered species, and of consulting with the public even before gene drive experiments are undertaken in the laboratory. It’s a message that evolutionary engineer Kevin Esvelt worries may not come through strongly enough to individual researchers.
As hunger mounts, Venezuelans turn to trash for food (Source Associated Press) Until recently, Julio Noguera worked at a bakery. Now he spends his evenings searching through the garbage for food. “I come here looking for food because if I didn’t, I’d starve to death,” Noguera said as he sorted through a pile of moldy potatoes. “With things like they are, no one helps anyone and no one gives away meals.” Across town, unemployed people converge every dusk at a trash heap on a downtown Caracas sidewalk to pick through rotten fruit and vegetables tossed out by nearby shops. They are frequently joined by small business owners, college students and pensioners — people who consider themselves middle class even though their living standards have long ago been pulverized by triple-digit inflation, food shortages and a collapsing currency. Venezuela’s poverty had eased during the administration of the late President Hugo Chavez. But a study by three leading Caracas universities found that 76 percent of Venezuelans are now under the poverty line, compared with 52% in 2014. Staples such as corn flour and cooking oil are subsidized, costing pennies at the strongest of two official exchange rates. But fruit and vegetables have become an unaffordable luxury for many Venezuelan families.
THE US GOVERNMENT HAS RECENTLY ISSUED 2 ALARMING WARNINGS TO PREP…BUT IS ANYBODY LISTENING? (Source The Organic Prepper) President Obama stepped away from the golf course to address FEMA at the end of May. Here, HYPERLINK “https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2016/05/31/remarks-president-hurricane-preparedness-fema-national-response” \t “_blank” from the White House website, is an excerpt from his speech: One of the things that we have learned over the course of the last seven and a half years is that government plays a vital role, but it is every citizen’s responsibility to be prepared for a disaster. And that means taking proactive steps, like having an evacuation plan, having a fully stocked disaster supply kit. If your local authorities ask you to evacuate, you have to do it. Don’t wait. And so one of the biggest, most important messages that we’re going to be delivering throughout hurricane season is that you cannot judge the dangerousness of a hurricane based on the fact that in the past it dissipated or it missed you. If your local authorities say that you need to start evacuating, you need to start evacuating and get it done. And what we’ve been seeing is some public complacency slipping in; a large portion of people not having preparedness kits, not having evacuation plans… If you need information about how to put together an evacuation plan, how to put together a disaster preparedness kit, as Craig said, we’ve got an app for everything now. We have a FEMA app in English and in Spanish to help you prepare your family for a disaster. You can update the National Weather Service alerts. You can get safety tips for more than 20 kinds of hazards. It provides you directions to nearby shelters. DHS has followed with a warning about potential evacuations in DC. It’s no surprise that the nation’s capital is a prime target for terrorist attacks. The DC public transit system known as “the Metro” began it’s HYPERLINK “http://www.fox5dc.com/news/153696761-story” \t “_blank” year-long Safe Track program, performing repairs on the aging infrastructure. While the repairs are much needed, the commuter congestion wrought by the changes in service have brought to light the very real issues that would occur in the event of a rapid evacuation of the city. So although evacuation is always a nightmare, the limited Metro service could elevate that to crisis proportions. HYPERLINK “http://www.fox5dc.com/news/local-news/155471085-story” \t “_blank” DC Homeland Security Director Christopher Geldart has issued a warning to residents: Everyone needs to dust off their evacuation plans, understanding Metro isn’t a reliable option over the next year. “When we put more vehicles on the road– like an emergency happening in the middle of the day and everybody leaving at the same time– that’s going to cause backup and it’s going to take people a good time to get home,” Geldart said. “It will take longer– much longer– than they are used to. So what we’re telling folks is, you need to have a plan with your family.”
Provoking the Russian Bear: NATO Is “Cannon Fodder” for the American Empire (Source silentcrownews.com) Washington’s European vassal states are on the road to social, political and economic destruction. The European Union’s (EU) sanctions on Russia is one example on how farmers, working class people and various businesses are experiencing financial difficulties and even bankruptcy due to US-NATO’s reckless policies against Russia. Washington’s move to place a new ground-based missile defense system in Romania with Poland’s recruitment drive and the BALTOPS 16 exercise will surely raise tensions with Russia which are at an all time high since the Cold War. Russia views this move as a threat to its security with NATO’s encirclement of Russia is as reckless and as dangerous as you can get in terms of escalating the possibility of a disastrous war. If NATO were that foolish to start a war against Russia, European countries across Western Europe would be open to Russian missile strikes crippling Europe’s already fragile social and economic fabric. An attack on Russia would be the end of NATO, literally. Russia has capabilities that are far more advanced than what the U.S. and NATO forces have in their arsenal as independent geopolitical analyst and writer Pepe Escobar explains: If push comes to nuclear shove, the S-400 and especially the S-500 anti-missile missiles would block all incoming US ICBMs, cruise missiles and stealth aircraft. Offensive drones would be blocked by drone defenses. The S-500 practically consigns to the dustbin stealth warplanes such as the F-22, F-35 and the B-2. The bottom line is that Russia – in terms of hypersonic missile development – is about four generations ahead of the US, if we measure it by the development of the S-300, S-400 and S-500 systems. As a working hypothesis, we could describe the next system – already in the drawing boards – as the S-600. It would take the US military at least ten years to develop and roll out a new weapons system, which in military terms represents a generation. Every Pentagon planner worth his pension plan should know that.
Restoration work starts on Jesus’s tomb (Source BBC News) A team of experts has begun restoring the ancient tomb in Jerusalem where Christians believe Jesus was buried, in the first such works for 200 years. The renovation in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre aims to reinforce and conserve the structure. Rivalry between the three denominations that run the church has delayed work. But clerics from the Greek Orthodox, Roman Catholic and Armenian churches have put aside their differences, recognising the need to begin repairs. The work will focus on the Edicule, the ancient chamber housing Jesus’s tomb which Christians say stands above the spot where Jesus’s body was anointed, wrapped in cloth and buried. The last restoration work to take place there was in 1810 after a fire. The Greek Orthodox, Roman Catholic and Armenian authorities are responsible for running different parts of the church but share responsibility for the shrine. The scientific co-ordinator for the repairs, Antonia Moropoulou, said the tomb was stable but warped and needed attention after many years of exposure to water, humidity and candle smoke.