Global News (03/24/09)

Magna Cum Lousy — Where Today’s Bad CEOs Went To School (The Business Insider):
No big surprise: Most of the bankers, politicians and regulators who got us into this mess went to a handful of elite universities and business schools. (Watch the slideshow.)

Scientists in possible cold fusion breakthrough (AFP):
The scientists on Monday described what they called the first clear visual evidence that low-energy nuclear reaction (LENR), or cold fusion devices can produce neutrons, subatomic particles that scientists say are indicative of nuclear reactions.

Veterans face HIV risk from hospital pumps (MiamiHerald):
Thousands of veterans who underwent certain routine medical procedures at Miami’s VA Medical Center are at risk of being infected with hepatitis or HIV, the hospital announced Monday.

‘IDF troops used 11-year-old boy as human shield in Gaza’ (Ha’aretz):
Israel Defense Forces soldiers used an 11-year-old Palestinian boy as a human shield during the war against Hamas in the Gaza Strip, a group of UN human rights experts said Monday. IDF troops ordered the boy to walk in front of soldiers being fired on in the Gaza neighborhood of Tel al-Hawa and enter buildings before them, said the UN secretary-general’s envoy for protecting children in armed conflict.

IDF soldiers ordered to shoot at Gaza rescuers, note says (Ha’aretz)

UN reports say Israel targeted civilians in Gaza (Reuters)

Fighting for life: American peace activist shot by Israelis (Independent):
The parents of an American peace activist publicly appealed yesterday for a full investigation into how their son was shot in the head with a high velocity tear gas canister by Israeli security forces.

Israel slams UN rights report on Gaza (AFP)

Thirteen die after C. diff outbreak at hospital (Telegraph):
Three died as a direct result of clostridium difficile while the bug was linked to a further 10 deaths at the hospital. A further 17 patients are still being treated for the fatal infection.

Sweden Says No to Saving Saab (New York Times)

HR 1207 Update (Campaign For Liberty)

Bond Market Bingo (Baltimore City Paper):
So this bailout is not about getting you a better mortgage, and it’s not even about getting banks out of trouble. It’s about making the counterparties like AIG whole …..
By my count, this is the third time Obama administration officials have floated a scheme that is essentially a rehash of the Paulson plan, each time adding a new set of bells and whistles and claiming that they’re doing something completely different.

Global markets buoyed by US $1tn bank bailout (Guardian):
(If the banksters can get rid of all their toxic worthless garbage and the U.S. taxpayer pays for it, then that should be enough reason for the banksters to celebrate.)

Timothy Geithner’s toxic plan (Guardian):
Treasury secretary Timothy Geithner’s latest bank bailout plan is another Rube Goldberg contraption intended to funnel taxpayer dollars to bankrupt banks, without being overly transparent about the process.

Financial Policy Despair (Paul Krugman -The New York Times):
If the reports are correct, Tim Geithner, the Treasury secretary, has persuaded President Obama to recycle Bush administration policy — specifically, the “cash for trash” plan proposed, then abandoned, six months ago by then-Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson. (More change!)

Fears of record hedge fund withdrawals (Financial Times):
A survey of investors by Deutsche Bank found a third expect more than $200bn to be withdrawn, after a net $155bn was taken out last year, according to calculations by Chicago consultancy Hedge Fund Research.

ING Seeks Return of Bonuses to Stem Taxpayer Anger (Bloomberg)

Nine of AIG’s top bonus earners agree to repay cash in full (Guardian)

Argentina Downgraded to Kazakhstan on Foreign Fund Restrictions (Bloomberg):
March 23 (Bloomberg) — In February, landslides tore through the northern Argentine town of Tartagal, leaving 10,000 people homeless.

Moody’s strips GE of triple-A rating (Financial Times):
General Electric’s financial health came under renewed focus on Monday as Moody’s stripped the conglomerate of the triple-A rating it had held for 42 years and challenged its executives’ pledge that its finance arm would be profitable this year.

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