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Features of the week

We've got a lot to cover in this Friday's edition of, "Features of the week".

Energy, food prices, environment, culture, liberty, protests, and emerging markets; It's all here, so pull up a chair and get acquainted with the following stories.

1. "Myanmar Forces Chase Down Protesters". Let me withdraw my earlier question and simply state the fact that the country's military has assaulted and killed civilian protesters.

Now make some of those protesters buddhist monks and you have some idea why this story is carrying such weight in the international press.

Even President Bush has condemned the acts of violence carried out by this "brutal" regime in their efforts to quell civilian protest, and if that's not irony, I don't know what is.

2. Meanwhile, I don't hear much objection to the rounding up and jailing of protesters when the acts are carried out by a "key ally" of the US, as is the case in Musharraf's Pakistan.

3. In Defense of Liberty. Very important, please read.

4. Freddie Mac chief warns of recession. Says US economy faces 40-45 percent chance of recession induced by housing market woes.

5. Cut the red tape. World Bank study ranks countries on ease of doing business.

6. A New Life in Panama? (Barron's). Bob Adams on America's wave of "silent emigration".

7. Bubble in emerging markets? FT's Joanna Chung handles the print story, while John Authers gives us the "Short View" via video at FT.com.

8. Flight to gold ETCs. Safe haven demand is not only apparent in spot gold, but in the new commodity ETFs (or, ETCs) as well.

9. Bullion rally unchecked by rising supplies. Gold continues its run despite increased selling from central banks.

10. Jim Rogers speaks to Bloomberg about oil, commodities, the Fed, and inflation.

11. Forget dog years, we are living in "China years", says Bloomberg's William Pesek.

12. The Financial Philosopher on, "Why The World Needs Philosophy".

13. Psych 101: Popular Culture - A YouTube Journey Through Time - Gary Tanashian.

14. Fed's rate cute does not help Americans - Axel Merk.

15. Rising food prices signal increased cost of living and inflation in China.

16. "Peak Everything" - an inteview with author Richard Heinberg.

17. Learning to live with Big Brother (Economist).

18. 13th century copy of the Magna Carta to be auctioned off at Sotheby's.

Thanks for reading Finance Trends Matter. Enjoy your weekend, everyone.

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