Evening Blues Weekend Edition Preview 08-30-15

Tonight's artist will be pianist Nicky Hopkins. Even if you don't know his name, you've heard his playing. Some examples:

Nicky Hopkins - Piano Shuffle

The Rolling Stones - She's a Rainbow from Their Satanic Majesties Request vinyl

THE KINKS - Mr. Pleasant 1967

The Steve Miller Band - Baby's House

Jerry Garcia Band - Friend Of The Devil (1975)

Some of the News items:

Welcome to the trade deal wars: Escobar

By Pepe Escobar on August 28, 2015 in AT Top Writers, China, Empire of Chaos, Pepe Escobar, Southeast Asia

BANGKOK -- China continues to grow at a not too shabby 7%. And yet, because of the yuan devaluation and the sharp drop in the stock market, in most Western capitals the narrative switched to Armageddon descended over an economic model that generated, over the years, six-fold growth in Chinese GDP.

Few are aware that Beijing, simultaneously, is engaged in a thrice titanic task; to shift its growth vector from exports and massive investment to services; to tackle the negative and/or self-satisfied role of state-owned enterprises; and to deflate at least three bubbles -- debt, real estate speculation and the stock market -- in the context of a virtual global economic stagnation.

All this while there is virtually no Western coverage of the China-led Eurasian trade integration push, which will help to eventually consolidate the Middle Kingdom as the largest economy in the world.

And that brings us to a crucial subplot in the Big Picture: Southeast Asia.

Russia's Middle East ship drops anchor in Suez Canal

By M.K. Bhadrakumar on August 28, 2015 in Asia Times News & Features

Anchoring is not so simple as it seems. Determining the location, dropping the anchor, settling the hook and, most important, assessing where the vessel is going to end up -- these involve complex maneuverings. The key is to ensure that the ship is sufficiently protected, has suitable holding ground, enough depth at low tide and enough room for the boat to swing.
After President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi's (R) recent visit to Moscow, Egypt has become a pivotal country for Russia's Middle East policies

To be sure, what emerges out of the two-day official visit by President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi to Moscow on August 25-26 is that Egypt has become a pivotal country for Russia's Middle East policies

There is much poignancy in what is unfolding insofar as it harks back to the halcyon days of Soviet-Egyptian relations that ended with the departure of Gamal Abdel Nasser 45 years ago.

Looking back, President Vladimir Putin made a smart decision to back Sisi to the hilt when the latter snatched power from the elected president Mohamed Morsi in July 2013. Sisi's coup, which was sponsored by Saudi Arabia, was viewed with distaste by most countries as a hopelessly reactionary development that might set the clock back in the democratic transformation of Egypt (and the Middle East as a whole). The brute use of force by Sisi to put down dissent and the popular opposition to the coup was found repugnant by the international community.

Japan reports inflation, household spending soften in July

Elaine Kurtenbach, Ap Business Writer Updated 11:19 pm, Thursday, August 27, 2015
TOKYO (AP) -- The backdrop to the wild drama in financial markets over the past few weeks is a less dramatic but more daunting reality: the deep-seated challenges for sustaining long-term growth, especially for aging economies like Japan's.

Japan released data Friday showing its economy has yet to escape the doldrums more than two years after Prime Minister Shinzo Abe launched an unprecedented effort to jolt the country out of its deflationary rut.

Core inflation excluding volatile food prices flat-lined at its lowest level in more than two years in July and household spending also slowed, the government reported.

Unemployment edged down to 3.3 percent and household incomes rose 5.4 percent in real terms, thanks largely to semi-annual bonus payments. Such trends are leading economists for forecast the economy will return to expansion after a 1.6 percent contraction in annual terms in April-June.

But the middling vital signs, and worries over China's ability to stoke its own growth, may raise pressure on the Bank of Japan to up its unprecedented barrage of monetary stimulus.


Buried among the Evening Greens is the non-surprise that creating a market in carbon credits isn't the answer:

Report: Carbon Credits Under Kyoto Protocol Actually Increased Emissions

by Gina-Marie Cheeseman on Thursday, Aug 27th, 2015

reforestation projectAt the end of November, governments will come together in Paris to hammer out agreements for a successor to the Kyoto Protocol. Under the KP, there are two greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions offsetting mechanisms: joint implementation (JI) and the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM).

JI allows countries with emissions-reduction commitments under the Kyoto Protocol to generate Emission Reduction Units (ERUs) from GHG reduction projects and transfer them to other countries. Almost 872 million ERUs had been issued under JI as of March 2015, about a third of all Kyoto offset credits. In a nutshell, JIs are carbon credits and include things like reforestation projects.

Perhaps government heads should read this recent report by the Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI), which found that the use of JI actually may have enabled GHG emissions to be about 600 million tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (tCO2e) more than if countries had met their emissions targets domestically.

5:02 pm at DailyKos, as usual

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enhydra lutris's picture

Thanks for the graph.

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --