IN THIS WEATHER, HALF THE BRONX IS SELLING SNOWCONES

A weekly ezine of news, commentary, health, humor and general interest

A weekly ezine of news, commentary, health, humor and general interest

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Vol. 8 No. 22

pacem, libertatem, iustitiam

Rusty Miller – Editor

Denny Steussy – Associate Editor

Olha Bereza – European Associate Editor

 IN THIS WEATHER, HALF THE BRONX IS SELLING SNOWCONES

Hi again from the shores of the Salish Sea.  It has certainly been an interesting week, has it not?  The reason that I suspect this is that there are several online chatrooms we visit as virtual coffee houses to experience what people beyond the shores of the Salish Sea are going through.

After reading this headline, Record-breaking cold in US East we visited a chatroom heavily populated by those in the affected area.  When I commented on this Siberian weather, a New Yorker wrote:

“If it lasts much longer, one half of the Bronx will be selling snowcones to stranded tourists and the other half will be renting them dogsleds and German Shepherds.”

Our hearts go out to you folks east of the Mississippi and beyond.  Sometimes tough isn’t always about going to war and being brave.  Sometimes and mostly, it’s about taking the hits and carrying on.

We are sorry to hear about what you are going through.  But we are very proud of the way you are handling it.  Take care now.  You folks are very special and we can’t afford to lose any of you doing something dumb.

Have a good week, gang.  And thanks for the ear.

THE NEWS

This is good news but I thought ~ according to the Hippocratic Oath ~ that they were supposed to be doing this anyway. Doctors Strive to Do Less Harm by Inattentive Care

This is not particularly cheerful but it is informative.  12 Ways You And Everyone You Know Could Die

I happen to agree with this.  ISIS is no more representative of all Muslims than the Irish Republican Army is of all Catholics or the Ku Klux Klan, all Protestants.  Faulted for Avoiding ‘Islamic’ Labels to Describe Terrorism, White House Cites a Strategic Logic

WORLD

‘Cyber bank robbers’ steal $1bn

Are You in for Earth Hour?

AFRICA

Deadly Attack On Somalia Hotel

Make or Break Year Ahead for South Africa’s Rhinos

Mali Rebel Groups Sign Ceasefire

Egyptian Bronze Cat Sold For £52,000

Mauritanian Wants Chelsea Fans Punished

Libya Urges UN To Lift Arms Embargo

Qatar Recalls Envoy Over Egypt Row

ASIA

Japan’s Economy Exits Recession

How Nepal Got to Zero Poaching

Widodo Drops Police Chief After Row 

US Pays Philippines Over Reef Damage 

Japan Post To Buy Australia’s Toll 

Hong Kong Protests: In-Depth Features And Background On Hong Kong‘s Pro-Democracy Protests

Fresh Leak Detected At Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant

AUSTRALIA & OCEANA

Great Barrier Reef under Threat

Cyclone Marcia: Queensland Towns Reel As Help Is Directed At Population Centers

PM To Announce Anti-Extremism Measures In National Security Address

CHINA

China Home Prices Continue To Slump

Turkey Favors China Missile Deal

Lunar New Year Celebrations Begin

China Sacking For Salamander Scandal

The Latest Chinese Status Symbol

EUROPE

Terror Attacks By A Native Son Rock Denmark

Men Charged Over Copenhagen Attacks

Danish Officials Warned About Gunman

French Inflation Turns Negative

Eurozone Set For Vital Greece Talks

INDIA

As Rivals Falter, India’s Economy Is Surging Ahead

India Arrests Over Document ‘Leaks’ 

Drug-Resistant Malaria ‘Huge Threat’ 

Hanged Girls’ Families Dispute Probe 

LATIN AMERICA

Working In Shadow Of The Andes

‘Coup Plot’ Charge For Caracas Mayor

Funding Query Over Rio Carnival Win

Argentines Rally Over Nisman Death

Mexico Tackles Pipeline Fuel Thefts

Storms Hit 1,500 Argentine Homes

Haiti Mourns Carnival Float Victims

MIDDLE EAST

Iran’s Supreme Leader Says He Doubts Nuclear Talks Will End Sanctions

Turkey Enters Syria To Evacuate Tomb

Fire Rips Through Dubai Skyscraper

Islamic State Crisis:  Background, Features And Analysis On Turmoil Over Extremist Group In Syria And Iraq

Syria Conflict

Israel And The Palestinians

PM Concern For ‘Syria-Bound’ Girls

Iraq-Kurdish Force ‘To Retake Mosul’

A Secret World In Iran’s Desert, Where A Harsh Life Is Tempered By Beauty

RUSSIA

At The Time Warner Center, An Enclave Of Powerful Russians

Putin Critic Detained for 15 Days

Court Upholds Activist’s Suspended Sentence

UNITED KINGDOM

RAF Scrambles After Russia Jet Sighting

UK Finances Show £8.8bn Surplus

Northern Ireland

Celtic Sea God Statue Is Discovered

Man In Court Over Wedding Killing

Wales Or Cymru

Search For Boy, 11, Enters Sixth Day

Man, 72, Goes Missing From Hospital

Scotland Or Alba

Police Raid Over Poisoned Peregrine

Greens To Field Record Candidates

England

Immigration Film ‘Should Be Shelved’

Boy ‘Played Dead’ In Taliban Massacre

UNITED STATES

In New York City, Jobs Come Back Without Wall Street

Man Indicted For Us Muslim Murders

West Virginia Train Derailment Dumps Oil Into River

Ashton Carter Sworn In as Secretary of Defense

The U.S. Has Actually Been Having An Unusually Warm Winter

President Obama Names 3 New National Monuments

Record-Breaking Cold In US East

Steady Improvement Expected In US Housing Market

TOPICAL

CLIMATE CHANGE

Britain’s Most Powerful Politicians Agree Fighting Climate Change Is A Jolly Good Idea

Unprecedented Sea Lion Strandings Linked To Warmer Pacific

TERRORISM & ESPIONAGE

Egypt Bombs ISIS Targets In Libya

ISIS Bomb Attack ‘Kills 40′ In Libya

U.S. Embedded Spyware Overseas, Report Claims

The Men Who Smuggle The Loot That Funds IS

From a Private School in Cairo to ISIS Killing Fields in Syria (With Video)

Obama Urges Global United Front Against Extremist Groups Like ISIS

U.S. Muslims Take On ISIS’ Recruiting Machine

US And UK ‘Hacked Sim Card Firm’

UKRAINE

Ukraine Crisis: In-Depth Features And Background On Ukraine Conflict

OH CANADA

Sooner or later, this was bound to happen.  But it’s still disgusting and we need to make it stop.  Ocean Waste Hits Home: Plastic-Filled Fish Guts Ruins Chilliwack Man’s Catch

Our hearts to go out to all those impacted by this.  Target To Close All 133 Canada Stores

When two nations who have cooperated as well as these in war and peace, take up the sword together, we can only pity the enemy involved. Obama Makes Appeal To Muslims, As Ottawa Calls Out Radical Islam

GOOD EXAMPLES

We consider this a very good thing.  The Pacific Northwest has had excellent luck with female governors.  Kate Brown Sworn In as Oregon Governor, Replacing John Kitzhaber

This is a raise to ten dollars an hour at a time when the minimum wage is increasing to fifteen dollars an hour.  But ~ proverbially ~ I suppose a half a loaf is better than no bread at all.  Walmart To Raise Wages For Workers

For our American readers, do you live in the happiest or saddest state?  Note:  This is a list of the worst places and it is in reverse order.  In other words, the lower your state is on the list, the healthier it is.  (I agree.  This is a dumb way to rank stuff)

BAD EXAMPLES

This is NOT a good idea, guys.  TransCanada To Seek U.S. Approval For Another Pipeline

This just keeps getting better and better.  When Americans Lynched Mexicans

And these same people reclaimed much of their land from the Atlantic Ocean?  Earthquake Dangers in Dutch Gas Field Were Ignored for Years, Safety Board Says

EXPLORATION, HISTORY, SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

This should prove interesting.  Hotel With Robot Staff Set To Open In Japan

This is incredible.  The 14 Most Amazing Water Bodies

Just in case you did not already know this from personal experience.  This Cold Weather Pretty Much Freezes Everything

HERE ON EARTH

What Is A ‘Sky River,’ And Why Is Miss Piggy Flying In It?

The World’s Most Sensitive Eyes

Ka-boom.  Scientists Solve Mystery Of Earth’s Tectonic Plates

OUTER SPACE

Mars One Candidate Thinks She Has What It Takes

Space Elevators: A Lift Too Far?

ISS Spacewalk Prepares For Tourists

FROM JUST ABOUT ANYWHERE

Creating Cold

What A Man’s Hands Say About How He Treats Women

Constantly Checking Your Phone Could Be A Sign Of Depression

OTHER TECHNOLOGY

US Drone Rules Impact Amazon Plans

F.A.A. Rules Would Limit Commercial Drone Use

The Incredible True Tale Of “The Queen Of Neuroscience” And Her Nobel Prize

NASA EARTH OBSERVATORY IMAGES

The Earth Observatory’s mission is to share with the public the images, stories, and discoveries about climate and the environment that emerge from NASA research, including its satellite missions, in-the-field research, and climate models.

THE GREEN AGENDA

Oil Trains Are Blowing Up All Over The Place

Aerial Photos Show Just How Devastating An Oil Train Derailment Can Be

The Largest Chinese Bike Share Program Is 12 Times the Size of NYC’s

Local Food With a Big Twist: Oregon Super-Cooperative Takes Aim at the Corporate Food System

HEALTH

Eat Less Meat, More Plants And Drink in Moderation, New Diet Guidelines Suggest

US Panel Backs ‘Green’ Low-Meat Diet

UK Scientists Are Finding New Ways To ‘Starve’ Prostate Cancer Tumors To Death

How Smart Is Your Subconscious?

Will the Elder Boom Spur a Caring Revolution? Ai-jen Poo’s Inspiring Vision

Fifteen-Minute Ebola Test Approved

LIFESTYLE

What’s the definition of a hate crime?

Which books will cure loneliness?

Gay marriage around the world

NORTHSTAR COMICS

We’ve collected what we consider the most wholesome, family-oriented and genuinely humorous comic strips we could find on the Net.  They include:  Adam@Home, Calvin & Hobbes, Emmylou, For Better or For Worse, Foxtrot Classics, Garfield, Get Fuzzy, and Peanuts.  Either click the banner or this link.

BEST OF THE NET

Michelle Obama Thinks Carrots Are Better Than Ariana Grande

Video: 36 Hours In Beijing

Rare Video Of A Tiger And Her Playful Cubs

FROM NORTHSTAR

WRATH OF THE TESTAMENT

It is an America gone mad from the addiction to war and desperate for resources beyond her own borders.  A military dictatorship controls the country and life is grim. The Republic is fighting for its very survival and for decades, especially with Latin America.

This is the world of the United States Coast Guard cutter Testament, a cybernetic patrol boat, and her six-person crew.  Her mission, and those of her sister craft, is simple.

Quench the rebellion and stop the flow of Americans seeking refuge in Canada. Kill when expedient.  Deliver the survivors to the Bellingham Re-Education Center.

A simple operational order and one which has served America well.  Until Testament

For a preview:  Go Here

For the kindle book: ($3.99) at amazon.com

THE BACK COUNTRY GALLERY’S new monthly nature wallpaper is available here.  Steve Perry also has a newsletter offering a great deal of cool stuff for wildlife photographers, amateur and/or professional. 

NORTHSTAR MEDIA SERVICES

minstrel312@aol.com

Business Correspondence,  Communications Consulting, Classified And Other Advertising Copy Writing, Editing, Ghost Writing, Humor  Jokes & Monologues, Online Research, Online Writing Tutoring, Proofreading, Song Lyrics, Speeches, Special Projects

NORTHSTAR MEDIA SERVICES

minstrel312@aol.com

ALL CREATURES, GREAT AND SMALL

We’ve suspected this for a long time.  Dogs Know If You’re Untrustworthy

If this doesn’t include horses and the month of May, I am going to be just a tad disappointed.  Animals You Never Knew Could Fly

The World Wildlife Foundation’s latest newsletter is here and it is packed with stuff that will amuse, educate and ~ in some cases ~ strum the heartstrings of animal lovers from the amoeba to the zebra.  One of my favorite features is the contest for best caption of a cute or weird life form.  Yes, this is a Northstar Five Star Read.

RELATED LINKS:

Living With Wildlife

BBC’s wildlife finder

National Geographic Daily News – Animals

THE NORTHSTAR JOURNAL ENDORSES:

Amnesty International

Black Sea Agro: Agriculture In The Black Sea Region

Cream Magazine & Millennium Art Gallery

Grittv With Laura Flaunders

Help End World Hunger & Poverty | Heifer International® | Heifer.Org

No Camels – Weekly Israeli Innovation News

Outside Magazine

The SeaDoc Society: People & Science Healing The Sea

Sierra Club

Wildlife Extra magazine

World Wildlife Fund

Writing For Peace

YOU GUYS THINK I MAKE THIS STUFF UP

The Man Who Robbed A Bank For Love

Video: ScienceTake | The Physics of Popcorn

Boston Mayor Scolds Snow Jumpers

 ABOUT US

The Northstar Journal is a reader supported international non-profit news, commentary and general interest Internet magazine.  Founded as a monthly in 1999, it is the winner of two Hersh “Best Read on the Net Awards” for its coverage of Bosnia and of Washington State’s Nisqually Earthquake.  If you enjoyed this edition and would like to contribute to the next, please go here  For more information, contact Rusty Miller at minstrel312@aol.com

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

THE STUFF OF HOLLYWOOD

A weekly ezine of news, commentary, health, humor and general interest

A weekly ezine of news, commentary, health, humor and general interest

       Sunday, February 15, 2015                                   Vol. 8 No. 21

“If your two brothers were fighting with sticks, would you give one of them a knife?”  Olha Bereza

Rusty Miller – Editor

Denny Steussy – Associate Editor

Olha Bereza – European Associate Editor

Nina Gualinga, Sarayaku resident and international activist on indigenous rights, traveling on the Bobonaza River, Sarayaku, Ecuador. Photo by Caroline Bennett.  Our thanks to YES magazine

Nina Gualinga, Sarayaku resident and international activist on indigenous rights, traveling on the Bobonaza River, Sarayaku, Ecuador. Photo by Caroline Bennett. Our thanks to YES magazine

THE STUFF OF HOLLYWOOD

Hi again from the shores of the Salish Sea.  In bringing this modest weekly to you, we read headlines and summaries from over a dozen of the best media in the English-speaking world.

Every once in awhile, a story jumps out of this news panoply and grabs us, sometimes in a good way and sometimes, in a not so good way.  This is one of the former.

This story is about a small tribe of people on the Amazon River defeating attempts by an international fossil fuel company to drill for oil where they live.   And it is the stuff of Hollywood, this tale true.

It has all the essentials.  The hero ~ heroine in this case ~ is a small, beautiful, passionate international environmental and indigenous peoples activist who reminds me very much of someone very close to me who is no longer here.

The plot is as classic as America itself, for it is as much a struggle for the right of self-determination as the Revolutionary War.

The locale could not be more exotic for how many places are there, truly, with the lushness, ecological variety and sheer beauty of the Amazon?

This story is also journalism at its finest.  It takes you right there and weaves the action into a portrait of an unforgettable woman and her people.

Enjoy and experience  Deep in the Amazon, a Tiny Tribe Is Beating Big Oil

Have a good week, gang.  And thanks for the ear.

THE NEWS

This means your car could be hijacked by hackers and to me, that is scary.  Report Sees Weak Security in Cars’ Wireless Systems

They just might finally have gotten the wrong people really mad at them.  It is one thing, I expect, to be threatened by a sword.  And another entirely to be promised the blade of the scimitar.  Jordanian Interior Minister Says Country Aims To ‘Wipe Out’ ISIS Militants

This is awesome.  Science in 2015:  The BBC’s science team looks at what lies ahead in 2015

WORLD

Cheaper Oil ‘Will Not Boost Growth’

Oil Prices Up 3% On News Of Economic Growth In Europe, But Supplies Rise

AFRICA

Egypt Halts Football After Deaths

Chad Government Enters Agreement To Assess New Area Of The Sahara For Protection »

Technology Solves Disappearance Mystery Of One Of Africa’s Famous Birds

Niger Sending Troops to Fight Boko Haram

Egypt Restricts News Coverage of Slain Activist Shaimaa el-Sabbagh

ASIA

Indonesia Divers Recover More Bodies From AirAsia Crash, Raising Number Retrieved To 100

As Technology Entrepreneurs Multiply in Vietnam, So Do Regulations

S Korea ‘Nut Rage’ Executive Jailed

Taiwan Jail Siege Ends In Suicides 

Bali Executions Would Be ‘Unjust’ 

Transasia Pilots Fail Safety Tests 

AUSTRALIA & OCEANA

Australia In ‘Extinction Calamity’

3D-Printed Knuckle Dusters Seized

Hopes Are High’ To Save Remaining NZ Whales

CHINA

China Tells Schools to Suppress Western Ideas, With One Big Exception

Tesla Seeks a Stronger Foothold in China

China Hits Qualcomm With Fine

Sex, Bribes and Videotape: Scandal at China State TV

EUROPE

Strauss-Kahn Denies Pimping Charge

Germany, Greece Draw Battle Lines Ahead Of Meeting With Creditors

Migrant Sinking In Med Kills 200

Greece To Present Bailout Plan To EU

Captain Of Costa Concordia Is Convicted Of Manslaughter In Italy

Eurozone Economy Sees Growth Pick Up

Copenhagen Cafe Event Is Shattered By Gunfire

Gunman Believed To Be Behind Copenhagen Attacks Is Fatally Shot, Police Say

Portugal Cut Addiction Rates in Half by Connecting Drug Users With Communities Instead of Jailing Them

INDIA

India Anti-Corruption Party Routs BJP

India’s Aam Aadmi Party Sweeps Elections In Delhi

Amid Complaints In India, A Real Estate Deal In Manhattan

Indian Prime Minister Voices Concern About Targeting of Churches

Delhi Wakes Up to an Air Pollution Problem It Cannot Ignore

India Building Collapse Kills 13

Why People Live In Mumbai’s Dangerous Buildings

In Pictures: India Building Collapses

India Building Collapse Rescue Ends

LATIN AMERICA

The Case For Aid To Central America

Mexican Political Family Has Close PRI Ties, And Homes In The U.S.

MIDDLE EAST

In Yemen, Houthi Leader Pledges To Pursue Power-Sharing Accord

Western Powers Close Yemen Embassies

U.N. Envoy To Syria Says Assad Is Crucial To Hopes To End War

RUSSIA

Ruble’s Fall Tests Governor of Russia’s Central Bank

UNITED KINGDOM

Please Don’t Eat The Daffodils: UK Health Agency Asks Stores To Separate Flowers And Food

Ground-Breaking Agreement Keeps Scottish Prairie Dogs Under Control

UNITED STATES

Trial In Killing Of Chris Kyle, ‘American Sniper’ Model, Sets Town On Edge

The Muslims Of Early America

Chapel Hill Shooting Leaves 3 Muslim Students Dead; Neighbor Is Charged

U.S. Is Escalating a Secretive War in Afghanistan

Parts Of Louisiana’s Sunken Coast Are Resurfacing

Gov. John Kitzhaber of Oregon Resigns Amid Crisis

Federal Inquiry Begins Into Muslim Students’ Killings in North Carolina

Hundreds Protest Fatal Police Shooting in Washington

F.B.I. Director Speaks Out on Race and Police Bias

THE VATICAN

In Spanish Abuse Scandal, a More Open Vatican

Pope Appoints 20 New Cardinals

TOPICAL

CLIMATE CHANGE

Climate Change Is Of Growing Personal Concern To U.S. Hispanics, Poll Finds

We’ll Need More Vaccines In A Warming World

US ‘At Risk Of Mega-Drought Future’

EBOLA

16 Years Of Twists, Turns Lead To Ebola Vaccine Testing

Sierra Leone Loses Track of Millions in Ebola Funds

Red Cross Faces Attacks at Ebola Victims’ Funerals

Ebola Victims Still Infectious a Week After Death, Scientists Find

TERRORISM & ESPIONAGE

Drone ‘Kills Afghan IS Commander’

Obama, Meeting With Merkel On Ukraine Crisis, Keeps Military Aid Option Open

Death of Kayla Mueller, ISIS Hostage, Confirmed by Family and White House

Obama to Seek War Power Bill From Congress, to Fight ISIS

Belgium Jails Islamist Group Members

Islamic State Sprouting Limbs Beyond Its Base

UKRAINE

West Caused Ukraine Crisis – Putin

Ukraine ‘Quieter’ After Ceasefire

Poroshenko Orders Ceasefire To Begin

The Conflict In Maps

Why Is East Ukraine Hit By Conflict?

Who Benefits From Minsk?

OH CANADA

This is certainly not good news.  Toronto’s Measles Count Rises To Six With Report Of Infected Adult

This is a relief.  Halifax plot was not ‘culturally motivated’ and therefore not linked to terrorism, says Peter MacKay

These stories are not pretty but it is clearly time they were told.  Silent No More – the story of aboriginal women in Canada today

GOOD EXAMPLES

It’s about time.  Now BP And Shell Will Consider The Cost Of Climate Change When Doing Business

This, to me, is absolutely thrilling.  Apple Building Solar Farm to Power California Operations

This is really encouraging.  Israelis, Palestinians Join Forces To Explore Local Flowers To Combat Cancer, Diabetes

BAD EXAMPLES

Why does this somehow not surprise me?  Alabama State Chief Supreme Court Justice Defies Federal Gay Marriage Law  On the other hand, good show, Your Honors. U.S. Orders Alabama to License Gay Unions

This, I suspect, does not bode well.  Anti-oil sands activists in the U.S. are getting visits from the FBI

Lest America get just a little too self-righteous.  History of Lynchings in the South Documents Nearly 4,000 Names

SHORTS

Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s Defense: Lust Is No Crime

Jails Have Become Warehouses For The Poor, Ill And Addicted, A Report Says

B.C.’S Top Police Watchdog Faces Sex-Discrimination Suit In Denver

EXPLORATION, HISTORY, SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

In view of recent revelations about how easy it is for a hacker to take control of a motor vehicle, is this really such a good idea?  UK Kickstarts Driverless Car Changes

This looks like a fun group.  The Invention Mob, Brought to You by Quirky

And this was totally intriguing.  More Evidence That Mammals Coexisted With Dinosaurs

HERE ON EARTH

See The Unknown Side Of Kilimanjaro

Which Life Form Dominates Earth?

Seven Of The World’s Riskiest Roads

OUTER SPACE

Europe’s Mini-Space Shuttle Returns

Doomed Stars Found At Nebula’s Heart

Planck Puts New Date On First Stars

FROM JUST ABOUT ANYWHERE

Biggest Myth About Phone Privacy

Net Pioneer Warns Of Data Dark Age

Drone To Scan For Ancient Amazonia

OTHER TECHNOLOGY

The Network That Runs The World

An Incubator For Innovation

IBM’s Watson Turns Japanese And Moves Into Robots

NASA EARTH OBSERVATORY IMAGES

The Earth Observatory’s mission is to share with the public the images, stories, and discoveries about climate and the environment that emerge from NASA research, including its satellite missions, in-the-field research, and climate models.

THE GREEN AGENDA

Are there any eco-friendly credit card companies?

We did the math on clean coal, and it doesn’t add up

What’s In The Air You Breathe? BreezoMeter App Monitors Pollution Down To Your Specific Street

HEALTH

Can testosterone slow ageing?

Cancer and Chemotherapy

The Thought That Could Kill You

Doctor-Assisted Suicide: Who Does The Killing?

Alvio Treats Asthma The Natural Way With Kid-Friendly Mobile Games

Technion Discovery To Identify Cancerous Cells By Investigating Their Evolution

Smoking’s Toll on Health Is Even Worse Than Previously Thought, a Study Finds

PULSE:

By David B. Grinberg — Strategic Communications Advisor, Writer/Blogger/Editor, Former Journalist

Brian Williams: Did Digital Kill TV News Star?

What caused esteemed NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams to “conflate” and “misremember” his role in reporting and recounting lead national news stories ranging from the Iraq War to possibly Hurricane Katrina and others?

Perhaps NBC’s current investigation into the controversy will reveal the truth behind Williams’ personal and professional motives, or lack thereof. But regardless of whether Williams lied to millions of viewers inadvertently or intentionally, there’s a bigger issue at stake here than the veracity of one leading TV news star or the decline of broadcast news generally. That is:

The new rules of 21st century journalism are often plagued by unintended and detrimental consequences for reporters and news consumers alike.

To read the entire blog ~and we highly recommend it ~ please go here.

LIFESTYLE

Dar Williams: Why the Music of Protest Is Still Worth Defending

Dating Dos And Don’ts In The Social Media Age

Monopoly’s Inventor: The Progressive Who Didn’t Pass ‘Go’

NORTHSTAR COMICS

We’ve collected what we consider the most wholesome, family-oriented and genuinely humorous comic strips we could find on the Net.  They include:  Adam@Home, Calvin & Hobbes, Emmylou, For Better or For Worse, Foxtrot Classics, Garfield, Get Fuzzy, and Peanuts.  Either click the banner or this link.

BEST OF THE NET

Please Look At These Beautiful Waves, Because The Ocean Is Awesome

From Warrior Cops To Community Police: A Former Chief On How We Can Turn Back The Tide Of Militarization

In A Desert Valley Not So Far From Los Angeles, Tonya Littlewolf Has Built A Refuge For Wolves Born In Captivity — And For Herself.

Angels Watching Over Me – Amy Grant

FROM NORTHSTAR

WRATH OF THE TESTAMENT

It is an America gone mad from the addiction to war and desperate for resources beyond her own borders.  A military dictatorship controls the country and life is grim. The Republic is fighting for its very survival and for decades, especially with Latin America.

This is the world of the United States Coast Guard cutter Testament, a cybernetic patrol boat, and her six-person crew.  Her mission, and those of her sister craft, is simple.

Quench the rebellion and stop the flow of Americans seeking refuge in Canada. Kill when expedient.  Deliver the survivors to the Bellingham Re-Education Center.

A simple operational order and one which has served America well.  Until Testament

For a preview:  Go Here  For the kindle book: ($3.99) at amazon.com

THE BACK COUNTRY GALLERY’S new monthly nature wallpaper is available here.  Steve Perry also has a newsletter offering a great deal of cool stuff for wildlife photographers, amateur and/or professional. 

NORTHSTAR MEDIA SERVICES

minstrel312@aol.com

Business Correspondence,  Communications Consulting, Classified And Other Advertising Copy Writing, Editing, Ghost Writing, Humor  Jokes & Monologues, Online Research, Online Writing Tutoring, Proofreading, Song Lyrics, Speeches, Special Projects

NORTHSTAR MEDIA SERVICES

minstrel312@aol.com

ALL CREATURES, GREAT AND SMALL

Now that this is common knowledge, we can all sleep a lot better.  Weird giant fish reveals secrets

I imagine she got quite a welcome.  Sona, The Lucky White-Tailed Eagle, Turns Up Unexpectedly In South West Scotland

We are sure the hunter who did this would undo it if he could but it is still sad news.  First wolf spotted in Grand Canyon in 70 years shot by hunter who mistook her for a coyote

THE CORNELL LAB OF ORTHINOLOGY MONTHLY NEWSLETTER IS NOW AVAILABLE.  Features include Birds + Kids = Inspiration and Identify This Species.

SHORTS

New Yellow Frog Discovered In Peru

British Wildlife Photography Awards 2015 Is Now Open For Entries »

Urban Gulls Found To Favor Fast Food

Norwegian Lemmings Stand Out In A Crowd And Scream To Deter Predators

Global Marine Areas Receive £280,000 Boost From Birdfair 2014 Visitors »

Birdfair 2015 Funds Pledged To Reduce Illegal Killing Of Migrant Birds

RELATED LINKS:

Living With Wildlife

BBC’s wildlife finder

National Geographic Daily News – Animals

THE NORTHSTAR JOURNAL ENDORSES:

Amnesty International

Black Sea Agro: Agriculture In The Black Sea Region

Cream Magazine & Millennium Art Gallery

Grittv With Laura Flaunders

Help End World Hunger & Poverty | Heifer International® | Heifer.Org

No Camels – Weekly Israeli Innovation News

Outside Magazine

The SeaDoc Society: People & Science Healing The Sea

Sierra Club

Wildlife Extra magazine

World Wildlife Fund

Writing For Peace

YOU GUYS THINK I MAKE THIS STUFF UP

Watch: Car Tows Skier In Detroit

The Bull Whose Semen Is Worth $3,000 A Shot

One Woman, 17 British Accents

 111714ABOUT US

The Northstar Journal is a reader supported international non-profit news, commentary and general interest Internet magazine.  Founded as a monthly in 1999, it is the winner of two Hersh “Best Read on the Net Awards” for its coverage of Bosnia and of Washington State’s Nisqually Earthquake.  If you enjoyed this edition and would like to contribute to the next, please go here  For more information, contact Rusty Miller at minstrel312@aol.com

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

RAIN: A STORY OF LOVE AND WAR

A weekly ezine of news, commentary, health, humor and general interest

A weekly ezine of news, commentary, health, humor and general interest

Sunday, February 8, 2015                                                      Vol. 8 No. 19

“If your two brothers were fighting with sticks, would you give one of them a knife?”  Olha Bereza

Rusty Miller – Editor

Denny Steussy – Associate Editor

Olha Bereza – European Associate Editor

Looking across the Ship Canal

RAIN:  A Story of Love & War

They’d been married once.  Younger then, their lives had been a collage of rain dimpling a duck pond, wishing games in the high branches of the evergreens, intimate meals in the kitchen and nights that grew richer with familiarity.

Theirs was a strange, almost inarticulate love best captured in the mornings she’d fall asleep at her easel, exhausted over a night’s work, or the cold-coffee dawns he’d come home with a split lip and nothing to show for a week on the road with his combo.

“I like it.”

“You don’t think the trees are too green?”

“They’re beautiful.”

“I’m glad you’re home.”

“Me too.”

“How much do we owe the landlord?”

“I’m glad you’re home.  The landlord will keep.”

There were, as well, those funny/sad times when the edge cut so deep it blunted itself on midnight cornflake conversations.

“What are you doing still up?”

“Couldn’t sleep.  What’s your excuse?”

“I missed you.  Go for a walk?”

“Like this?”

“You look fine.”

“OK.”

And then they’d stroll the quiet streets, reaping a clear night star harvest, or stand alone on the levee, watching the moon play on the rolling glass river.  Sometimes it was back to the all-night coffee shop, where they would sit across from each other without talking, or needing to.  Theirs was the rule of no apology, and that gentle dictate blessed their lives for two years and a season.

Then time and an era caught up with them.

His best friend was killed in battle over Thanksgiving, and she sold two of her canvases, only to learn they’d been purchased for their frames.  She began her rage at one end of town, he his at the other, and they met in the heat of it all at the coffee shop.  She cursed him for something he said, and he slapped her.  In a moment of absolute terror, they told each other they were sorry.

He came back 18 months later with a limp and a double row of campaign ribbons.  They talked over coffee, and he whistled at the prices her paintings were bringing.  She reached out to touch the gaunt planes of his cheeks.  They dined together, then went walking.

Along dusty country lanes, they played in rainbow leaves, chased squirrels and waded in the Indian summer silt of bullfrog ponds.  They renamed the trees and called the southbound geese by the colors of the palette.  She memorized the gentle strength of his hands and heard the quiet joy of words a cordite-parched throat could barely speak.  Loves was theirs once more — and for an emerald instant — time and an era left them in peace.

When he returned to stay, she met him at the airport and saw him through the final mile home.  He never smiled or told her how glad he was to see her.  She never mentioned how much she had missed him.  When the final strains of epitaph faded into the eternal chill, she walked home and sat down on the living room couch.

Rain fell softly beyond her.

© 1990 Merritt Scott Miller

THE NEWS

I am not sure skepticism is appropriate at this point.  Russia Details Plans to Bolster Its Economy, but Experts Scoff

Whew.  Jordan Returns Ambassador to Israel as Tensions Ease at Holy Site

If you want to beat America, do not engage her with a force of arms.  Conquer her with cute.  Puppy Emerges a Winner in Viewers’ Taste for Super Bowl Commercials

WORLD

Slump in Oil Prices Brings Pressure, and Investment Opportunity

Naheed Nenshi Crowned World Mayor 2014

Your Winter Could Be A Lot Less Cold By The End Of The Century

AFRICA

South Africa Moves 100 Rhinos To Undisclosed Locations

Bassim Haidar On How Boko Haram Impacts Nigeria

Nigeria Postpones Elections, Saying Security Is a Concern

Illuminating a Central African Crisis, Photo by Photo

Five Reasons To Be ‘Cautiously Optimistic’ About Africa

ASIA

Japan Will Not Give In To Terror, Says Prime Minister Shinzo Abe

Pro-Democracy Protesters Return to Streets of Hong Kong

North Korea Launches 5 Short-Range Missiles

Taiwan: Pilots Begin Tests

Bangladesh: Bombings Extend Political Violence

East Timor’s Prime Minister, Xanana Gusmão, Resigns

Philippine President Accepts Police Chief’s Resignation After Deadly Raid

Open-Skies Agreements Challenged

Indonesian Economic Growth Falls to Its Lowest in 5 Years

TransAsia Airways Faces Scrutiny After 2nd Fatal Crash

Abe Is Said to Have Plans to Revise Pacifist Charter

South Korea Vows ‘Strong Crackdown’ on Uber

Arvind Kejriwal Aims to Reclaim the Poor in Delhi Vote

News Analysis: Sri Lanka’s New Government Hopes to Revisit Past on Its Own Terms

AUSTRALIA & OCEANA

Egypt Releases And Deports Al Jazeera Journalist Peter Greste Of Australia

Tony Abbott, Australian Leader, Pledges to Abandon Unpopular Policies

Australia’s Leader Expedites Vote Threatening His Job

Queensland Election Result To Be Decided By Courts

Sydney Siege Hostages Share Their Ordeal In Television Interviews

CHINA

2 Members of Sect Executed in China for Deadly Beating at McDonald’s

The Palace Of Shame That Makes China Angry

China to Crack Down on Tax Collection From Multinational Companies

China Moves to Free Up Money in Its Economy

Canadian Woman Detained In China On Spying Suspicions Released On Bail

Obama’s Public Encounter With the Dalai Lama Riles China

New Data Shows Apple’s Explosive Growth in China

China Purges a Party’s Rolls (and Tissues)

EUROPE

Court Rejects Balkan Genocide Claims

Suspect in Attack on French Soldiers Is Arrested

Man Who Stabbed 3 Near Jewish Center in France Had Been Held for Questioning

ECB Toughens Its Stance On Greece

NATO To Boost Eastern Europe Defense

Slovakia Vote On Gay Rights Fails

INDIA

India: Christians Protest Attacks

India’s Slum Children Force Government To Take Action

Police Rescue Hundreds Of Child Workers In Southern India

LATIN AMERICA

US Expands Venezuela Visa Bans

Petrobras Executives Leaving Amid Brazilian Graft Scandal

 

MIDDLE EAST

Coming to Mourn Tahrir Square’s Dead, and Joining Them Instead

Iraq PM Orders End To Baghdad Curfew

Bloody Day In Baghdad As Blasts Kill Dozens

Saudis Unswayed by Houthis’ Overture

In Gaza and the West Bank, Love Struggles to Bridge the Separation

RUSSIA

Russia’s New Army – In 90 Seconds

UNITED KINGDOM

Breeding Ground Sought Of Small Thames Fish That Smells Of Cucumber

Devon Beavers Are To Stay Natural England Rules

GCHQ Intelligence Sharing ‘Unlawful’

Charles Alarmed By Radicalization

Prince Charles Arrives In Jordan

Is It Extreme To Make Universities Combat Extremists?

UNITED STATES

Crash Kills 7 In Worst Accident In History Of Metro-North

Secondhand Smoke Exposure Drops, C.D.C. Reports

Job And Wage Gains As Americans Rejoin The Work Force

Brian Williams, Under Scrutiny, Will Take Leave From ‘NBC Nightly News’

THE VATICAN

Pope Francis and Climate Change: A Catholic Tradition 

TOPICAL

CLIMATE CHANGE

U.N. Weather Agency Confirms 2014 as Hottest Year

Carbon Intensity: The Foundation of Climate Diplomacy — New Delhi, India 

Obama’s National Security Strategy Lists Climate Change Among ‘Top Strategic Risks’ To U.S.

Global Climate Deal Shouldn’t Harm Economic Growth, France Says

EBOLA

Ebola Drug Aids Some in a Study in West Africa

A Photographer Documents Ebola’s Deadly Spread

Small Rise in New Cases Shows Ebola Hanging On

TERRORISM & ESPIONAGE

ISIS Video Shows Jordanian Pilot Being Burned To Death

Jordan Executes Convicted Jihadists

Arab World Unites in Anger After Burning of Jordanian Pilot

Jordan’s King Abdullah II Returns Home to Cheers After Swift Executions

Jordan’s ISIS Raids ‘Just The Start’

ISIS Claims U.S. Hostage, Kayla Mueller, Died in Jordanian Airstrikes

The Spreading Rage at ISIS

UKRAINE

On Front Lines in Ukraine, Rebels Are Upbeat and Eager to Advance

Ukraine Rebels Upbeat After an Infusion of Aid

Cultural Life Goes On in Donetsk, War Permitting

Europe Leaders In Ukraine Peace Bid

U.S. Joins Europe in Efforts to End Fighting in Ukraine

Western Nations Split on Arming Kiev

Ukraine Insists Any Pact With Russia Must Adhere to Terms of September Accord

Shivering, Hungry and Tearful in Rebel-Held Eastern Ukraine

Ukraine Crisis: In-Depth Features And Background On Ukraine Conflict

 OH CANADA

Sometimes there doesn’t need to be a good reason.  It just needs to be there.  Daredevil Duo Scales Niagara Falls

This had to take maximum chutzpah.  Undercover RCMP Informant Infiltrated Suspected ISIS Recruiting Network

Way to go!  Canadian CF-18s Destroy ISIS Bomb Factory And Staging Area

GOOD EXAMPLES

Our cities need more leadership like this.  Naheed Nenshi crowned World Mayor 2014

Vive le you guys.  France Announces Suspension Of All Raw Ivory Exports And No Importation Of Elephants

Good.  US Watchdog To Defend Net Neutrality

SHORTS

She Could’ve Had A Sweet 16 Party, But Did Something Incredible Instead

Pizza Shop, Customers Give Away 8,400 Slices To Philly’s Homeless

Teacher Who Saved 38 Students From Burning Bus Recalls Heartfelt Moment Every Student Thanked Her

BAD EXAMPLES

Henry Ford has to be rolling over in his grave now.  Cars With Faulty Airbags Are Recalled Second Time, but Fix May Take a Year

To me, this is NOT a good idea.  If you want to study wildlife, use the technology necessary to observe, rather than capture, test and analyze.  Video: How to Catch a Deer

I am not sure this is a good idea.  In Net Neutrality Plan, F.C.C. Chief Sees Internet Service Regulated as Public Utility

SHORTS

Silk Road Site’s Creator Found Guilty

The World’s Most-Trafficked Mammal – And The Scaliest

Defrocked Priest Sentenced For Sex Offenses Against Inuit Children

EXPLORATION, HISTORY, SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

This seems a little obvious.  Study Finds One Of The Most Effective Ways To Fight Hunger In Developing World Is To Build Better Roads

This is reassuring.  British Data Echoes U.S. Climate Report

It’s because creatures like this are down there that I do not go there with them.  Fishermen Overseas Haul Up Strange ‘Living Fossil’

HERE ON EARTH

The 15 Most Amazing Landforms

Morocco, From Coast to Desert

Can We Reverse-Engineer the Environment?

OUTER SPACE

Video: Out There | Raining Fire

A Sleepless Night’s Fancy Nears Space After 17 Years

28 Months On Mars

FROM JUST ABOUT ANYWHERE

Hotel With Robot Staff Set To Open In Japan

Drones Spotted, But Not Halted, Raise Concerns

WATCH: Travel Through Our Solar System At The Speed Of Light

OTHER TECHNOLOGY

Smart Sensors for Power Grid Could Ease Disruptions

Easy Ways to Get Your Movie Idea Out of Your Head

WATCH: How SpaceX Will Reuse Its Rockets Is Pretty Remarkable

NASA EARTH OBSERVATORY IMAGES

The Earth Observatory’s mission is to share with the public the images, stories, and discoveries about climate and the environment that emerge from NASA research, including its satellite missions, in-the-field research, and climate models.

THE GREEN AGENDA

Germans Protest That Modern Farming Methods Damage The Environment

Asking More of the Landscape

Helping An Island By Helping Hawks

HEALTH

What Causes Girls to Enter Puberty Early?

The Facts About Low Calorie Sweeteners

Bubonic Plague in the Subway System? Don’t Worry About It

New Study Suggests Marijuana May Be Effective Against Depression

6 Dangerous Anti-Vaccination Arguments That Need To Be Shut Down

PULSE:

By David B. Grinberg — Strategic Communications Advisor, Writer/Blogger/Editor, Former Journalist

NFL Fumbles on Patriots “Deflate-gate” Scandal

Did the New England Patriots cheat their way to the Super Bowl? This stubbornly persistent question remains unanswered despite their dramatic win over the Seattle Seahawks to claim the crown jewel of America’s National Football League (NFL).

The lingering doubts expressed by many sports fans and the media are due to serious allegations that the Patriots intentionally broke the rules to win the AFC championship game, the springboard to the Super Bowl.

To read the entire blog ~and we highly recommend it ~ please go here.

LIFESTYLE

For The Prickliest Patients, A Desert Doctor Makes House Calls

Is Your First Grader College Ready?

Designing Distraction: Executive Toys

Why Are Danish People So Happy?

Gay Marriage Around The World

Where Is It Illegal To Be Gay?

NORTHSTAR COMICS

We’ve collected what we consider the most wholesome, family-oriented and genuinely humorous comic strips we could find on the Net.  They include:  Adam@Home, Calvin & Hobbes, Emmylou, For Better or For Worse, Foxtrot Classics, Garfield, Get Fuzzy, and Peanuts.  Either click the banner or this link.

BEST OF THE NET

A Desert As You’ve Never Seen It

Rare African Golden Cat Captured On Film

This Woman Wants To Be First To Give Birth On Mars

FROM NORTHSTAR

Testament Ad Graphic

WRATH OF THE TESTAMENT

It is an America gone mad from the addiction to war and desperate for resources beyond her own borders.  A military dictatorship controls the country and life is grim. The Republic is fighting for its very survival and for decades, especially with Latin America.

This is the world of the United States Coast Guard cutter Testament, a cybernetic patrol boat, and her six-person crew.  Her mission, and those of her sister craft, is simple.

Quench the rebellion and stop the flow of Americans seeking refuge in Canada. Kill when expedient.  Deliver the survivors to the Bellingham Re-Education Center.

A simple operational order and one which has served America well.  Until Testament

For a preview:  Go Here

For the kindle book: ($3.99) at amazon.com

THE BACK COUNTRY GALLERY’S new monthly nature wallpaper is available here.  Steve Perry also has a newsletter offering a great deal of cool stuff for wildlife photographers, amateur and/or professional. 

NORTHSTAR MEDIA SERVICES

minstrel312@aol.com

Business Correspondence,  Communications Consulting, Classified And Other Advertising Copy Writing, Editing, Ghost Writing, Humor  Jokes & Monologues, Online Research, Online Writing Tutoring, Proofreading, Song Lyrics, Speeches, Special Projects

NORTHSTAR MEDIA SERVICES

minstrel312@aol.com

ALL CREATURES, GREAT AND SMALL

Here is a chance to succumb to cute.  Town Rabbits Downsize Homes

I totally loved this.  Sperm Whales Steal From Boats

And if they help us, will we do a better job of protecting them?  The Bee Solution to Winter

The SeaDoc Society’s February newsletter is now available.  Articles this month range from improving the welfare of individual animals such as the Steller sea lion we helped disentangle, to our work focused on animal populations like the tufted puffin.

SHORTS

Orphaned, Frost-Bitten Amur Tiger Cub Now Thriving In Russia’s Far East

The Bear, The Ant And The Yellow Flower – Scientist Discovers An Odd Relationship 

Marine Life At Risk As Number Of New Marine Conservation Zones Are Cut

New Research Could Help The Critically Endangered Saharan Cheetah Survive

RELATED LINKS:

Living With Wildlife

BBC’s wildlife finder

National Geographic Daily News – Animals

THE NORTHSTAR JOURNAL ENDORSES:

Amnesty International

Black Sea Agro: Agriculture In The Black Sea Region

Cream Magazine & Millennium Art Gallery

Grittv With Laura Flaunders

Help End World Hunger & Poverty | Heifer International® | Heifer.Org

No Camels – Weekly Israeli Innovation News

Outside Magazine

The SeaDoc Society: People & Science Healing The Sea

Sierra Club

Wildlife Extra magazine

World Wildlife Fund

Writing For Peace

YOU GUYS THINK I MAKE THIS STUFF UP

Wisconsin’s Treasurer Wants to Cut Needless Workers, Starting With Himself

The Greatest Mistranslations Ever

‘Bigfoot’ Caught On Camera — Again

111714 ABOUT US

The Northstar Journal is a reader supported international non-profit news, commentary and general interest Internet magazine.  Founded as a monthly in 1999, it is the winner of two Hersh “Best Read on the Net Awards” for its coverage of Bosnia and of Washington State’s Nisqually Earthquake.  If you enjoyed this edition and would like to contribute to the next, please go here  For more information, contact Rusty Miller at minstrel312@aol.com

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

AMERICA’S STORM OF THE CENTURY THAT WASN’T

A weekly ezine of news, commentary, health, humor and general interest

A weekly ezine of news, commentary, health, humor and general interest

Sunday, February 1, 2015                                                 Vol. 8 No. 18

“If your two brothers were fighting with sticks, would you give one of them a knife?”  Olha Bereza

Rusty Miller – Editor

Denny Steussy – Associate Editor

Olha Bereza – European Associate Editor

 Snoopy snow dance

AMERICA’S STORM OF THE CENTURY THAT WASN’T

Hi again from the shores of the Salish Sea.  Well, now that America’s “storm of the century” has passed and was not, except in Boston,(US Admits Snow Forecast Errors) I’m breathing a sigh of relief.  It’s been mostly monsoons, fog and cold sunshine in the Pacific Northwest.  But those of us who have lived here for any length of time at all remember when it has not been this relatively mild.

I believe this is climate change in action and I’m behind the scientific community’s assertion that our lifestyle has caused a great deal of it.  That aside, I think that one of the reasons it is easier for us up here to accept global warming ~ regardless the cause ~ is because in just Seattle’s King County alone, which is about the size of Delaware and Rhode Island combined ~ we have something like eight microclimates.

It’s like, if you don’t like the weather where you are, hop a cross town bus.  Everybody knows that and as a result, our media forecasters have a lot easier time of it because we don’t tend the burn the messenger if the news is bad.

We are young as cities go and somewhat parochial in our attitudes.  We have nonetheless found that the best way to find out what the weather is involves nothing more complicated than walking outside.  Especially in a place that has a different forecast for every zip code.

It’s the adaptability factor and it doesn’t involve complaining about it.  It involves being prepared for it.  More importantly, it means doing what we can ~ individual or corporate board ~ to stop contributing to it.

Sometimes I really do believe in comes right down to what so many human enterprises and interactions do and that is loving enough to make a difference.  I’m a family man and the happiness of my kin and future generations means a lot to me.  I expect it does to all of you as well.

Have a good week, gang.  And thanks for the ear.

THE NEWS

We so agree with this.  Humans keep pushing planet’s boundaries, Nine environmental factors keep Earth livable.  Scientists warn us that we need to be held within certain limits so that our species and other living organisms can continue to exist, and co-exist, on our relatively little blue-green marble.

When an organism like this can stay one step ahead of the most brilliant human medical minds on the planet, I really think we need to re-examine our definition of “intelligent life,” and accept that we may not be the epitome of it.  Ebola virus mutating, scientists say

Not to single one nation out for it because all are guilty of it to one degree or another, perhaps we can learn from What You Need To Know About Chronic Sexual Violence In India

WORLD

AFRICA

Key Nigerian City Under Fresh Attack

Why Is Boko Haram So Strong?

Mixing Religion And Politics

‘Raping Our Daughters’

Who Are Boko Haram?

AU Backs Anti-Boko Haram Troops Plan

Us Plotter Guilty Of Gambia Coup Bid

Kenya Bid To Beat Reading Record

Mugabe Takes Over As Au Chairman

Deadly Attacks Hit Egypt’s Sinai

Sudan Blocking Aid Work, Says MSF

Eugene De Kock, South African Death-Squad Leader, Is Granted Parole

ASIA

The Killer Haze Choking Asia

Scores Of Philippine Police Officers Killed In Firefight With Rebels

Malaysia Declares MH370 An Accident

Ruined And Restored In Cambodia

Indonesians Are Posting Selfies To Protest A Preacher’s Declaration That They Are Narcissistic

North Korean President to Visit Russia in May

Blast Kills Scores At Mosque In Southern Pakistan

AUSTRALIA & OCEANA

Tony Abbott Says He Will Not Resign In Wake Of LNP’s Queensland Rout

Palaszczuk Stops Short Of Declaring Victory In Queensland (Video)

Federal Government’s Relationship Counseling Program Axed

Three Dead, Boy Critical In NSW Central Coast Crash

Royal Commission To Examine Child Sexual Abuse Within Jewish Community

CHINA

China’s Super-Rich Communist Buddhists

New Rules in China Upset Western Tech Companies

Chinese Government Takes Aim at E-Commerce Giant Alibaba Over Fake Goods

President of China Minsheng Bank Steps Down

EUROPE

Greece Chooses Anti-Austerity Party In Major Shift

Greece Forms Anti-Bailout Coalition

After Winning Over Voters, Greece’s New Government Must Face Creditors

Tsipras’s Debt Plan Sends Athens Stock Market Sliding

Euro Recovers After Greek Vote Drop

Rare Duck Thrives In EU Protected Areas »

Dutch Shell To Cut Spending By $15 Billion

INDIA

Obama Attends India’s Republic Day

Obama, Modi Voice Optimism About Us-India Relations (With Video)

India Digs For $50 Billion Treasure After Dream Of Hindu Holy Man

Obama’s Honor Work Of 12-Year-Old Child Slave Turned Activist During India Trip

LATIN AMERICA

Journalist Who Reported On Argentine Prosecutor’s Death Flees To Israel

Oil Cash Waning, Venezuelan Shelves Lie Bare

With Oil Revenue Dropping, Mexico Announces Budget Cuts

Oil Cash Waning, Venezuelan Shelves Lie Bare 

Gas Explosion At Mexico City Hospital Kills 3 And Wounds Dozens

Group Of Senators Seeks To Lift Cuba Travel Limits

Plane Crashes Near Aruba After Pursuit By Military Jets

Brazil: Drastic Water Rationing May Be Put In Place In São Paulo

Former Top Venezuela Aide Said To Flee Amid Inquiry

Suspicion Is Cast On Aide In Death Of Argentine Prosecutor 

2 Sentenced In Murders In Chile Coup

MIDDLE EAST

Obama Meets With New King Of Saudi Arabia

Houthi Leader Blames Separatists In South Yemen For Political Stalemate

Hezbollah ‘Wants No Israel Conflict’

Forceful Show Of Support As Huge U.S. Delegation Pays Respects To Saudi King

RUSSIA

How Russia Outfoxes Its Enemies

Russia Makes Surprise Interest Rate Cut As Economy Slides

Blaze Wrecks Moscow Public Library

Putin Ally To Build Bridge To Crimea

UNITED KINGDOM

Pupils ‘Must Know Times Tables By 11′   

A‘We Have To Be Ambitious For Children’

Morgan: I’m In Charge, Not Gove

Fundraiser To Meet Mugging Victim

Falsely-Accused Sex Offender ‘Hell’ NEW

Climber Dies In Highlands Avalanche

Jesus Stickers Cause Insurance Row

Firms To Begin Inmate Rehabilitation 116

Labour Makes Cameron Billboard Vow

‘Missing Mum’ Body Had Head Injuries

New Jersey Governor Begins UK Visit

Oil Summit To Hear Pleas For Action

Mosque Open Days To Ease ‘Tensions’

UNITED STATES

As Oil Prices Fall, Alaska’s New Governor Faces a Novel Goal, Frugality

McDonald’s Boss Steps Down

U.S. Economy Slowed In 4th Quarter, But Consumer Spending Boomed

As Measles Cases Spread in U.S., So Does Anxiety

TOPICAL

CLIMATE CHANGE

Most Americans Support Government Action On Climate Change, Poll Finds

Climate Concern ‘Linked To Floods’

‘World Can Cut Carbon Emissions And Live Well’

EBOLA

As Ebola Ebbs In Africa, Focus Turns From Death To Life

Ebola Virus Mutating, Scientists Say

The Search For A Vaccine

Ebola: Mapping The Outbreak

TERRORISM & ESPIONAGE

C.I.A. Officer in Leak Case, Jeffrey Sterling, Is Convicted of Espionage

Group Linked To ISIS Says It’s Behind Assault On Libyan Hotel

French Police Question Boy, 8, Over Remarks On Paris Terror Attacks

CSIS (Canada’s Spy Agency) To Be Granted Massive Expansion Of Its Powers:

Islamic State Militants Say They Killed 2nd Japanese Hostage

Kurds Recapture Oil Facility In Northern Iraq From ISIS

UKRAINE

Cease-Fire In Shreds, Ukraine Sees Heaviest Fighting In Months

Save The New Ukraine

Reporting On Ukraine’s Refugees, At Home And Abroad
‘People Live Here. Don’t Shoot': The Atmosphere Darkens As Divisions Deepen In Eastern Ukraine

Mortar Attacks Kill 7 in Donetsk as Ukrainian Fighting Rages On

A Silver Lining Coated in Coal Dust in Eastern Ukraine

OH CANADA

This started when anti-Canadian sentiments were running high on the American northwest border.  But it has gone on entirely too long and it certainly is not a reflection of our national character.  Victoria’s Secret: Dumping Raw Sewage Like It’s 1915

Nice going, folks.  Toronto Cardiac Team Successfully Replaces Aortic Valve Through Neck Incision

This was a total trip.  All Hail Miss Canada, The Vengeful God Of Hockey

SHORTS

Replacing Fresh Milk With Powdered At Federal Prisons Expected To Save $3.1m A Year

Tim Hortons Cuts 350 Employees

Wrongly Accused, Metro Vancouver Man Collects Millions From Ottawa

FROM THE UKRAINE

IMG_20150128_140750

Rusty:

Here is a picture our readers might like. It was taken from the streets of Lviv, West Ukraine.  It means “We are all fish in one sea.”

Lord Wellington’s words, “The only thing more tragic than a battle lost is a battle won” remind me of the pale face of my co-student.  Her brother spent last winter at Maydan and afterwards, when insurgency started in the East, went there as a volunteer.  He never came back.

One of my journalist colleagues, regarding the Charlie tragedy, wrote, “The pen will always be mightier.”  I’m not sure if it can be mightier.  Money and power are mighty enough to buy enough pens.  But with freedom of speech some writers do provoke thoughts.

Quoting GG Byron:

“words are things, and a small drop of ink,

falling like dew, upon a thought, produces

that which makes thousands, perhaps millions, think. “

Stay warm, Mishka.

Olha Bereza – European Associate Editor

GOOD EXAMPLES

An American police detective named Joseph Wambaugh did this and it worked out real well for him and his fans, me included.  So good luck with this one.  From Undercover To Book Cover: Mountie Ditches Job To Write Thrillers

Good call, My President.  Obama: Protect Arctic Wildlife Refuge

Thomas Edison would be proud.  A Water Main In East Portland, Oregon Is Now Powering Light Bulbs

SHORTS

The North Carolina Way

States Move To Make Citizenship Exams A Classroom Aid

Six Ways the US Is Building a People-Powered Economy

BAD EXAMPLES

This is inevitable but still sad, especially considering there are other ways to move a ship than by screw.  Ship Propeller Killed Whale Found In Seattle

This was a major “ooops.”  Government Employee Crashes Small Drone at White House

There was a time when I would have horse-whipped those responsible for something like this.  201 Dogs In Distress Removed From Alberta Property

EXPLORATION, HISTORY, SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

This reminded me of those Japanese Giant Whatever Stomps All Over Big Cities movies of the Fifties, which thanks to RTV, are apparently coming back.  Come and have a go ~ Who would win fantasy fight between diplodocus and blue whale?

This to me is how our species will eventually reach the stars.  Hoping to Set Sail on Sunlight

This is for the inner child in all of us.  This Engineer Makes Amazing Model Trains

HERE ON EARTH

Ancient Skull Adds New Insight To Story Of Human Evolution

Giant Gap Between What Scientists, The Rest Of Us Think 

Balloon Flight Makes History

OUTER SPACE

Telescope Spies ‘God’s Hand’ In Space

Curiosity Rover Back In The Groove

Best Ever View Of Asteroid Ceres

FROM JUST ABOUT ANYWHERE

Scientists Create First-Ever 3-D Map Of Greenland’s Ice Layers

Millions Paid by X Prize Foundation for Progress Toward Trip to Moon

The Girls Who Never Age

OTHER TECHNOLOGY

Off the 3-D Printer, Practice Parts for the Surgeon

Coder Creates Smallest Chess Game

Space 2020: What Happens Next?

NASA EARTH OBSERVATORY IMAGES

The Earth Observatory’s mission is to share with the public the images, stories, and discoveries about climate and the environment that emerge from NASA research, including its satellite missions, in-the-field research, and climate models.

THE GREEN AGENDA

Food Bikes Combine Our Two Favorite Things

Meet Germany’s One-Seat Wonder

At The Ends Of The Earth… And In The Middle Of The Energy Wars

Beyond Cow Poop: Oregon Utility Rolls Out New Climate Program

Community-Owned Energy: How Nebraska Became the Only State to Bring Everyone Power From a Public Grid

HEALTH

BBC Health: A To Z Of Medical Conditions

Beating The ‘Blues’ And ‘Blahs’ Of Seasonal Affective Disorder

More Information: Seasonal Affective Disorder

Health Feature: Seasonal Affective Disorder

Depression Symptoms: Not Just Feeling Blue

The Benefits Of Treating Depression

PULSE:  By David B. Grinberg ~ Strategic Communications Advisor, Writer/Blogger/Editor, Former Journalist

IS YOUR COMPANY A SOCIAL MEDIA DINOSAUR?

How savvy is your employer on social media? Has it staked out a strong social presence in cyberspace, or is it more like a meandering social dinosaur in Jurassic times? Today’s modern companies should know by now that embracing social media contributes to business success in the 21st century Digital Age. Here’s why:

Strategically leveraging social media can lead to increased profits, customer loyalty and trust, among a range of other business benefits (listed below). In short, implementing a smart social strategy simply makes good business sense.

This is especially true when considering the change in labor force demographics with younger generations increasingly entering the workforce. Couple that with the hyper-paced changes in new and evolving mobile, digital and virtual technologies which are now part of everyday life.

To read the entire blog ~and we highly recommend it ~ please go here.

LIFESTYLE

The Woman Who Swapped Her Home For A Hut Near Chechnya

Gen Y Defies Its Stereotypes

Crossrail: Who Wants To Work In A Tunnel?

Mormons Seek Golden Mean Between Gay Rights And Religious Beliefs

Obama’s Honor Work Of 12-Year-Old Child Slave Turned Activist During India Trip

NORTHSTAR COMICS

We’ve collected what we consider the most wholesome, family-oriented and genuinely humorous comic strips we could find on the Net.  They include:  Adam@Home, Calvin & Hobbes, Emmylou, For Better or For Worse, Foxtrot Classics, Garfield, Get Fuzzy, and Peanuts.  Either click the banner or this link.

BEST OF THE NET

The Camera That Captured Readers’ Lives

Unexpected Guests: Mystery Family Of Beavers Allowed To Stay In English River

What If Humans Disappeared? – Youtube

FROM NORTHSTAR

Testament Ad Graphic

WRATH OF THE TESTAMENT

It is an America gone mad from the addiction to war and desperate for resources beyond her own borders.  A military dictatorship controls the country and life is grim. The Republic is fighting for its very survival and for decades, especially with Latin America.

This is the world of the United States Coast Guard cutter Testament, a cybernetic patrol boat, and her six-person crew.  Her mission, and those of her sister craft, is simple.

Quench the rebellion and stop the flow of Americans seeking refuge in Canada. Kill when expedient.  Deliver the survivors to the Bellingham Re-Education Center.

A simple operational order and one which has served America well.  Until Testament

For a preview:  Go Here 

For the kindle book: ($3.99) at amazon.com

THE BACK COUNTRY GALLERY’S new monthly nature wallpaper is available here.  Steve Perry also has a newsletter offering a great deal of cool stuff for wildlife photographers, amateur and/or professional.  

NORTHSTAR MEDIA SERVICES

minstrel312@aol.com

Business Correspondence,  Communications Consulting, Classified And Other Advertising Copy Writing, Editing, Ghost Writing, Humor  Jokes & Monologues, Online Research, Online Writing Tutoring, Proofreading, Song Lyrics, Speeches, Special Projects

NORTHSTAR MEDIA SERVICES

minstrel312@aol.com

ALL CREATURES, GREAT AND SMALL

We see a Disney film in this one, for sure.  Two Lionesses Born To Circus Life Get First Taste Of Freedom »

There is something incredibly endearing about these weird little dudes (and dudettes).

I thought this was a little amazing.  The Toughest Cocoon In The World

RELATED LINKS:

Living With Wildlife

BBC’s wildlife finder

National Geographic Daily News – Animals

THE NORTHSTAR JOURNAL ENDORSES:

Amnesty International

Black Sea Agro: Agriculture In The Black Sea Region

Cream Magazine & Millennium Art Gallery

Grittv With Laura Flaunders

Help End World Hunger & Poverty | Heifer International® | Heifer.Org

No Camels – Weekly Israeli Innovation News

Outside Magazine

The SeaDoc Society: People & Science Healing The Sea

Sierra Club

Wildlife Extra magazine

World Wildlife Fund

Writing For Peace

YOU GUYS THINK I MAKE THIS STUFF UP

Horse massage headlines our (Canada.com) videos of the week

Turkmenistan: Black Cars ‘Banned’ By Customs Officials

$400 Million For Public Skating, A Guinea Pig Refuge And A $140 Pizza

 111714 ABOUT US

The Northstar Journal is a reader supported international non-profit news, commentary and general interest Internet magazine.  Founded as a monthly in 1999, it is the winner of two Hersh “Best Read on the Net Awards” for its coverage of Bosnia and of Washington State’s Nisqually Earthquake.  If you enjoyed this edition and would like to contribute to the next, please go here  For more information, contact Rusty Miller at minstrel312@aol.com

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

THE ONLY THING MORE TRAGIC THAN A BATTLE LOST

A weekly ezine of news, commentary, health, humor and general interest

A weekly ezine of news, commentary, health, humor and general interest

Sunday, January 25, 2015                                     Vol. 8 No. 17

“If your two brothers were fighting with sticks, would you give one of them a knife?”  Olha Bereza

Rusty Miller – Editor

Denny Steussy – Associate Editor

Olha Bereza – European Associate Editor

Battle of Waterloo by William Sadler   Courtesy of History Today www.historytoday.com/andrew-roberts/woman-waterloo

Battle of Waterloo by William Sadler Courtesy of History Today http://www.historytoday.com/andrew-roberts/woman-waterloo

THE ONLY THING MORE TRAGIC THAN A BATTLE LOST

Hi again from the shores of the Salish Sea.  Well, it’s been another real interesting week and not a particularly good one for terrorists.  We’re learning who the real bad guys are and realizing that it’s not so much about faith as it is about behavior.

In other words, it’s not nearly as important who one prays to as it is how they conduct their lives and treat one another.  That means that certain things are just not done, among them, kidnapping, torture, exploitation, abuse or murder, private or on YouTube.

I think what rankles me most is that it seems to have started out so simply.

Do unto others as you would have done unto you.

Then, for some reason, we needed to quantify it with the Ten Commandments.  Since Moses brought those down, we have gone on to create a flood of legislation across almost three millennium, none of which seems to have made an incredible amount of difference in how we do unto others.

We go to war to kill people who are killing other people.  We slap economic sanctions on nations who can least afford them in order to stop them from invading neighboring countries for the resources they desperately need.  We attempt to impose our values on other cultures without the least understanding of either the cultures involved or the contemporary efficacy of those values.

And there is not one nation ~ large or small ~ which is not guilty of that to one degree or another.  And what, really are nations, if not the people who live in them?  Can those who cannot control themselves, their families and/or their neighborhoods really expect to influence the course of the biggest family to which they belong?

The Duke of Wellington, after his victory over Napoleon at Waterloo, contended two things that I have found true in my own experience with war.  The first was that the only thing more tragic than a battle lost is a battle won.  The second was that war will end when the toy soldiers are gone from the nursery.

Have a good week, gang.  And thanks for the ear.

THE NEWS

I am not sure this is necessarily good news for the rest of us.  Money may not buy happiness but it does pay for privilege.  Oxfam Study Finds Richest 1% Is Likely to Control Half of Global Wealth by 2016

This is good news, especially for the big cats involved.  India’s Tiger Population Up 30%

This bears reading.  Transcript of American President Barack Obama’s State Of The Union address

WORLD

Richest 1% To Own More Than The Rest

IMF Cuts Global Growth Forecast

Study: Ocean On Brink, But Wild Enough To Heal

Here Are The Most Expensive Countries In The World To Live In

AFRICA

Surrendered LRA Commander To Be Flown To The Hague Soon For War Crimes Trial

Libyan Fighters Seize Benghazi Branch of Central Bank

To Loosen Boko Haram’s Grip, Nigerian Voters Look to Ex-Leader Who Ruled With Iron Hand

Lungu Wins Zambia Presidential Poll

Five Things About The Zambian Election

Obituary: Michael Chilufya Sata

Zambia Profile

ASIA

Prominent North Korean Defector Recants Parts of His Story

Thai Ex-PM Banned From Politics

In Impeaching Ex-Premier, Junta Revives Thailand’s Divisions

Anger Over Pakistan Fuel Shortages 

Sri Lanka Rehabilitates Top General 

Bangladesh Arrests 7,000 Activists 

Japan PM Outrage At ‘Hostage Death’

Japanese PM’s Statement

AUSTRALIA & OCEANA

Australian-Built RV Sales Boom Despite Car Industry Gloom

Attempted Arson Of Toowoomba Mosque Could Have Been ‘Catastrophic’

Government Waits For US Lead On Hicks Terrorism Conviction

Fears Job Cuts Will Affect World Heritage Development Plans

Islamic State Recruiting More Australian Fighters, Brandis Warns

CHINA

Home Prices in China Decline for 4th Straight Month

To Calm Its Markets, China Helps Guide a Sell-Off

Meet The Steve Jobs Of China: Alibaba’s Jack Ma

Watching China From Cyberspace

China Stampede Families Compensated 

Chinese Manufacturing Growth Stalls 

China Tycoon In Atletico Madrid Deal 

EUROPE

Anti-Immigrant Rally Canceled in Germany After Leader Is Threatened

German Investor Confidence Rises

Five Chechens Arrested In France, One With Explosives

For Auschwitz Museum, and Survivors, a Moment of Passage

Here’s Why You Should Care About The Greek Election

Massive Boost For Eurozone Unveiled

INDIA

Obama And Modi See Mutual Benefit In Breaking More Ice

For Obama’s Visit, India Takes a Broom to Stray Monkeys and Cows

India Braces For Obama’s Delhi Visit

How Delhi Is Keeping Obama Safe

Issues To Watch

Obama And Modi In Joint Radio Speech

Why Obama’s India Visit Is Significant

LATIN AMERICA

Prosecutor In Argentina Bombing Inquiry Is Found Dead

Argentine President Now Says Prosecutor’s Death Was Not A Suicide

Cuba May Be Opening, But Business Travel Remains Limited

U.S. Outpost In Cuba To Step Out Of The Shadows

MIDDLE EAST

Hezbollah Says Israeli Helicopter Strike Killed 5 Fighters in Syria

Yemeni Government Collapses as President and Prime Minister Resign

Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah dies

Meet Saudi Arabia’s New King

For King Salman, New Saudi Ruler, A Region In Upheaval

New Saudi King and U.S. Face Crucial Point in the Relationship

New Saudi King Salman Names Heirs And Promises Stability

Egyptian President Sisi: Muslims Need To Reform Their Religious Discourse

RUSSIA

Top Official Says Russians Will ‘Eat Less’ For Putin

Is Russia Stoking War?

UNITED KINGDOM

England

‘Grave Concerns’ Over Missing Woman

Stephen Fry Signs ‘Save Soho’ Letter

Wales

Prop Jones Retires From Wales Dutybbc

Mansion Tax To Hit Just 87 In Wales

Scotland

Celtic Striker Griffiths Arrested

Man Arrested Over Woman’s Death

Northern Ireland

Man In Court Over School Threat

16-Year-Old Charged Over Stabbing

UNITED STATES

Sharp Slump In Oil Prices Pumping Up U.S. Economy

Prison Beard Ban Violates Muslim Religious Rights, Supreme Court Rules

In State Of The Union Speech, Obama Defiantly Sets Ambitious Agenda

Americans Like Stuff That Sounds Good, Polls Find

Leader Of German Anti-Immigrant Group Steps Down Over Hitler Photo

U.S. Says Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver Took Millions In Payoffs, Abusing Office

THE VATICAN

As Vatican Revisits Divorce, Many Catholics Long For Acceptance

TOPICAL

AIRASIA FLIGHT 8501

Rescuers Try To Lift Fuselage Of Crashed AirAsia Plane

Bid To Raise AirAsia Fuselage Begins

What We Know

Who Were The Victims?

Divers Race Time And Tide

CLIMATE CHANGE

Obama: Climate Change Is A Huge Threat

Watch 28 Years Of Old Arctic Ice Disappear In 1 Minute

Climate Change Moves Doomsday Clock

Scientists Warn We’re Closer Than Ever To The Apocalypse

A Year Of Opportunity To Combat Climate Change — And Transform Economies

EBOLA

Ebola Scientist Warns Business Elite

Ebola Infections Dropping in West Africa, World Health Organization Says

First Ebola Vaccine Heads To Liberia

UK Ebola Nurse ‘Happy To Be Alive’

‘I Lost A Week Of My Life’ Watch

Ebola: Mapping The Outbreak

Why Is Ebola So Dangerous?

FRENCH MAGAZINE OFFICE ATTACK

Four Face Charges Over Paris Attacks

Paris Attacker Coulibaly Is Buried

TERRORISM

European Police Try To Stop New Attacks, But EU Security Chief Calls It ‘Very Difficult’

Eight Israeli Arab Men Charged With Aiding ISIS

EU Urges Broad Alliance On Terrorism

European Leaders Urge Alliance With Muslim Nations To Fight Terrorism

Japan PM Abe In ‘ISIS Hostages’ Vow

Are Most Victims Of Terrorism Muslim?

France Boosts Anti-Terror Strategy

Anti-ISIS Coalition Meets In London

U.S. Suspends Some Counterterrorism Efforts Against Al Qaeda In Yemen

The Rise Of ISIS – And How To Beat It

Viewpoint: IS Hostages

UKRAINE

BBC SPECIAL REPORT — Ukraine Crisis:  In-Depth Features And Background On Ukraine Conflict

War Is Exploding Anew in Ukraine; Rebels Vow More

Rockets Kill 30 In Eastern Ukraine

‘A Significant Escalation’ Watch

Crisis Mapped

OH CANADA

We totally agree with this.  Crown Urges Indefinite Sentence For Martin Tremblay

I hope this is not as silly as it sounds.  Ottawa To Invoke Rarely Used Law In Buy America Feud

This is not good news.  Ocean floor off Vancouver Island will rip open like a zipper

SHORTS

Vancouver’s Housing Market Second Most Unaffordable In The World After Hong Kong:

Harper Says There’s More To The Canadian Economy Than Oil

Winnipeg Mayor Responds To Story Declaring City Most Racist In Canada

GOOD EXAMPLES

This is reassuring.  Preserved Under Fiberglass Domes, a Counterculture Spirit Thrives

This should certainly motivate and inspire.  How This Vancouver Entrepreneur Turned Her Hobby Into An International Business

I like it when someone takes the time and trouble to do this for us.  Myth Busting: The cost of food

BAD EXAMPLES

This is an outrage but I am not surprised.  Cancer-Causing Agent Found In Water After Pipeline Spill In Montana

Jeez, ya think?  C.I.A. Report Found Value of Brutal Interrogation Was Inflated

Please, Ronald, say it ain’t so.  McDonald’s Sued For Racial Bias

EXPLORATION, HISTORY, SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

I am a profound fan of anything airborne so I enjoyed this one a great deal.  Planes That Changed The World

Being an optimist, I thought this was really cool.  Science Finds Yet Another Reason To Look On The Bright Side

I kind of hope the answer to this question is no.  Could A Robot Write A Novel?

HERE ON EARTH

Is This A New Species Of Human?

Earth’s 25 Biggest Turning Points

What Languages The World Will Speak In 2115

OUTER SPACE

SpaceX Lands $1 Billion From Google and Fidelity

Mega Storms Sweep Uranus

These 14 Images Of The Sun May Be The Most Spectacular Ever Snapped

FROM JUST ABOUT ANYWHERE

Simon De Montfort: The Turning Point For Democracy That Gets Overlooked

Can A Film About An Attractive Robot Be Feminist Science Fiction?

Here’s Why You Shouldn’t Fear A Robot Apocalypse

OTHER TECHNOLOGY

Tech Toys: Giroptic, The World’s First 360° Camera

Toy Trains From The Past 200 Years

New Prosthetic Arm Set To Give Amputees More Freedom At An Affordable Price

NASA EARTH OBSERVATORY IMAGES

The Earth Observatory’s mission is to share with the public the images, stories, and discoveries about climate and the environment that emerge from NASA research, including its satellite missions, in-the-field research, and climate models.

THE GREEN AGENDA

Food Bikes Combine Our Two Favorite Things

A Water Main In East Portland, Oregon Is Now Powering Light Bulbs

At The Ends Of The Earth… And In The Middle Of The Energy Wars

HEALTH

What 4 Of The World’s Healthiest Diets Have In Common

Want To Be Calmer And More Creative? Look To Your Kitchen

9 Very Good Reasons To Let Go Of That Grudge

6 Cheap Winter Super Foods To Buy Now

5 Healthy Eating Habits To Adopt This Year

PULSE:

By David B. Grinberg ~ Strategic Communications Advisor, Writer/Blogger/Editor, Former Journalist

WHAT WOULD MLK SAY TODAY?

As America observes the annual federal holiday honoring the historic life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (MLK), let’s pause and ponder this question: What might MLK say today — if he were still alive — about the following civil rights and socio-economic justice issues of the 21st century…

Race & Law Enforcement. What would MLK say regarding recent racial tensions between law enforcement and citizens of color, especially young black men?

  • Would Dr. King castigate and rally against racial profiling and other alleged discriminatory police tactics which disproportionately affect citizens of color?
  • Would MLK condone or encourage rioting, looting and burning down community small businesses due to egregious racial incidents with police?

To read the entire blog ~and we highly recommend it ~ please go here.

LIFESTYLE

Nine Reasons Not To Abandon The Art Of The Handwritten Letter

Why Do Some People Dislike Hearing Foreign Languages In The Street?

The Team That Has To Cycle Hundreds Of Miles To Compete

Shakespeare Of Arabia

Writing Your Way To Happiness

One Couple’s Unanticipated Journey to Center of Landmark Gay Rights Case

NORTHSTAR COMICS

We’ve collected what we consider the most wholesome, family-oriented and genuinely humorous comic strips we could find on the Net.  They include:  Adam@Home, Calvin & Hobbes, Emmylou, For Better or For Worse, Foxtrot Classics, Garfield, Get Fuzzy, and Peanuts.  Either click the banner or this link.

BEST OF THE NET

Penguins, Igloos And Sponge Bob Headline Our Videos Of The Week

The Secret To Eternal Life — How Do You Want To Be Remembered?  If We Could Preserve Our Entire Minds For Generations To Come – Would You?

FROM NORTHSTAR

 Testament Ad Graphic

WRATH OF THE TESTAMENT

It is an America gone mad from the addiction to war and desperate for resources beyond her own borders.  A military dictatorship controls the country and life is grim. The Republic is fighting for its very survival and for decades, especially with Latin America.

This is the world of the United States Coast Guard cutter Testament, a cybernetic patrol boat, and her six-person crew.  Her mission, and those of her sister craft, is simple.

Quench the rebellion and stop the flow of Americans seeking refuge in Canada. Kill when expedient.  Deliver the survivors to the Bellingham Re-Education Center.

A simple operational order and one which has served America well.  Until Testament

For a preview:  Go Here

For the kindle book: ($3.99) at amazon.com

THE BACK COUNTRY GALLERY’S new monthly nature wallpaper is available here.  Steve Perry also has a newsletter offering a great deal of cool stuff for wildlife photographers, amateur and/or professional. 

NORTHSTAR MEDIA SERVICES

minstrel312@aol.com

Business Correspondence,  Communications Consulting, Classified And Other Advertising Copy Writing, Editing, Ghost Writing, Humor  Jokes & Monologues, Online Research, Online Writing Tutoring, Proofreading, Song Lyrics, Speeches, Special Projects

NORTHSTAR MEDIA SERVICES

minstrel312@aol.com

ALL CREATURES, GREAT AND SMALL

I know some people like this.  Video: Bats That Prey Together

This must have been real fun, for all involved.  Bulgaria Seizes Two Million Eels Hidden In Luggage

Why they would want to do this is a little beyond me but then this is Australia, after all.  Scientists Extract DNA From 40,000 Year Old Giant Kangaroos »

BIRD LOVERS ALERTThe Cornell (University) Lab of Ornithology’s January 2015 newsletter is now available.  Features this month include outstanding articles on the snowy owl, waterfowl in winter and a catalogue of webinars covering all facets of birds and bird watching.

SHORTS

Otters Around The World Are Threatened With Extinction Says New Report

Days Left To Save One Of The World’s Rarest Spiders From Developers

Landmark Jail Term For Gamekeeper George Mutch Convicted Of Killing Birds Of Prey

Baby White Rhino Born To Mother That Survived Horrific Poaching Attack

New Species Of Legless Amphibian For Cambodia

Study Indicates How Chilean Guanacos Can Live In Harmony With Farmers & Loggers

RELATED LINKS:

Living With Wildlife

BBC’s wildlife finder

National Geographic Daily News – Animals

THE NORTHSTAR JOURNAL ENDORSES:

Amnesty International

Black Sea Agro: Agriculture In The Black Sea Region

Cream Magazine & Millennium Art Gallery

Grittv With Laura Flaunders

Help End World Hunger & Poverty | Heifer International® | Heifer.Org

No Camels – Weekly Israeli Innovation News

Outside Magazine

The SeaDoc Society: People & Science Healing The Sea

Sierra Club

Wildlife Extra magazine

World Wildlife Fund

Writing For Peace

YOU GUYS THINK I MAKE THIS STUFF UP

University Of Alberta Students Build An Igloo

U.K. Parents Billed For Birthday Party No-Show

A Drone Operator Left His Job After He Started Dreaming In Infra-Red

German Men ‘Free To Pee Standing Up’

 111714ABOUT US

The Northstar Journal is a reader supported international non-profit news, commentary and general interest Internet magazine.  Founded as a monthly in 1999, it is the winner of two Hersh “Best Read on the Net Awards” for its coverage of Bosnia and of Washington State’s Nisqually Earthquake.  If you enjoyed this edition and would like to contribute to the next, please go here  For more information, contact Rusty Miller at minstrel312@aol.com

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

THIS ISN’T NOAH AND THE ARK

New Masthead

 

A weekly ezine of news, commentary, health, humor and general interest

Sunday, January 18, 2015                                                 Vol. 8 No. 16

“If your two brothers were fighting with sticks, would you give one of them a knife?”  Olha Bereza

Rusty Miller – Editor

Denny Steussy – Associate Editor

Olha Bereza – European Associate Editor

noah

 

THIS ISN’T NOAH AND THE ARK

Hi again from the shores of the Salish Sea.  In view of all the things that have been going on in the Wonderful World of Terror lately, it is easy to lose perspective and experience life as one under siege.

Ironically, ISIS and Al Qaeda have evolved from a culture which has experienced exactly that, for centuries, and mostly at the swords and guns of those who turned away from the very God in whose name they did their works.

We’ve spent almost a thousand years exploiting them and in the case of oil, transformed them into consumers as well as providers of this alleged “black gold.”

We’ve tried to tell them not only how to run their own countries but who should be in charge.  We have attempted to imprint western values on an eastern world and when we couldn’t sell it to them softly, we shoved it down their throats at the point of a bayonet.

So naturally, some of them have finally said, “This is camel dung.  Enough is enough.”

They also know a lot more about us than we do about them, including our profound colonial tendencies.  They are not going to let us to do them what we did to the people of those lands we “discovered”.

It would behoove us to reverse history a bit.  Perhaps it is time to “nation up.”  We don’t really need anything Islamic nations have to offer except their good will.  And whether we realize it or not, we need it desperately.  If we ~ as a species ~ are to survive this latest cycle of climate change, we can no longer afford to make war on one another.

This isn’t Noah and the Ark.  We are Noah and the planet is the Ark.

THE NEWS

As admittedly annoying and slightly unnerving as this is, at least no one lost their head over it.  ISIS Is Cited in Hacking of Central Command’s Twitter and YouTube Accounts

This is certainly long overdue.  In a Safer Age, U.S. Rethinks Its ‘Tough on Crime’ System

We agree with this.  To Respond To Terror, We Must Distinguish Its Three Varieties

WORLD

As Oil Prices Fall, Banks Serving the Energy Industry Brace for a Jolt

A Global Fight To Fortify Democracy And Security After Deadly French Attacks

Oil Prices Fall to Lowest Since 2009

World Bank Cuts Global Growth Forecast

AFRICA

Egyptian Authorities Release a Morsi Adviser

Cairo Bath House Men Acquitted

Mubarak Fraud Conviction Overturned

Images ‘Show Boko Haram Destruction’

Groups Document Boko Haram’s Swath of Destruction in Nigeria

Niger Charlie Protesters Burn Churches

ASIA

An Eternal Dilemma in the Golden Triangle

Groundswell Chooses Democracy in Sri Lanka

Reduced Japanese Whaling Fleet Departs To Conduct Scientific Studies

New Habitat Research Could Save Endangered Orangutans In Borneo

Pope Urges Postwar Reconciliation in Sri Lanka

Huge Crowds For Sri Lanka Papal Mass

AUSTRALIA & OCEANA

NZ Navy In Illegal Fishing Stand-Off

Australia Asylum: Why Is It Controversial?

Indonesia Jails Australian For Drugs

Australia ‘Must Pay’ Siege Victims

Phone Bug Wakes Australians Early

Paris Attacks Renew Australia Debate

Sydney Victim ‘Hit By Police Bullet’

Anderson ‘Doubts’ After Hughes Death

CHINA

In China, Projects to Make Great Wall Feel Small

China Trade Data Beats Expectations

Despite China’s Relaxed Single-Child Policy, One Child Enough For Most

Mourners grieve purged China leader

EUROPE

Fear on Rise, Jews in France Weigh an Exit

EU Lawyer Approves ECB Bond-Buying

Switzerland Scraps Ban On Franc Cap

Greece’s Rubber Glove Rebellion

Italian Aid Worker Hostages Freed

As Terrorism Suspects Are Detained in Europe, Scope of Challenge Is Highlighted

French Town Struggles Over Departures for Jihad

In Greece, Banks Ask E.C.B. for Access to Emergency Aid

Patriot Act Idea Rises In France, And Is Ridiculed

2 Suspected Of Arson Against German Paper Which Printed French Cartoons Detained

INDIA

John Kerry Arrives in India to Talk Trade and Prepare for Obama’s Visit

Bootleg Liquor Kills at Least 23 in India

India Uber Driver Rape Trial Begins

India In Surprise Interest Rate Cut

LATIN AMERICA

Cuba Frees 53 Prisoners in Deal to Restore U.S. Relations

Starting Friday, U.S. Will Ease Restrictions on Travel to Cuba

Brazil Angry At Indonesia Execution

Mexico Arrest Over Missing Students

Rio Announces Olympics Ticket Plan

Haiti Sees New Anti-Martelly Protest

Colombia ‘Ready For Ceasefire Talks’

US House Votes To Block Migrant Plan

Human Remains Found In Honduran Jail

MIDDLE EAST

Afghan Unity Government Announced

Grief and Defiance in Pakistan as Survivors of Taliban Massacre Return to School

Paris Attacks Drive New Wedge Between Turkey and Israel

U.N. to Resume Cease-Fire Talks With Syria

RUSSIA

Between Big Cities, A Road Passes The Russia Left Behind

Russia: Opposition Protesters Are Arrested After Clash

U.S. To Help Bulgaria Depend Less On Russians

Putin Won’t Attend Commemoration of Auschwitz Liberation

UNITED KINGDOM

British Prime Minister Suggests Banning Some Online Messaging Apps

UK Inflation Rate Falls To 0.5%

The End Of The CCTV Era?

Arrest in Britain in Hacking of Microsoft’s Xbox and Sony’s PlayStation Networks

Dramatic Swan Rescue On The Pevensey Levels

UNITED STATES

New Rules to Limit Tactics on Hospitals’ Fee Collections

New Golden Gate Bridge Barrier Draws Sighs of Relief

Huge Injection Of Publicly Raised Cash Given To Support US Wetlands

The Goats Fighting America’s Plant Invasion

John McCain, 78 and Untamed, Savors Senate Dream Job

Mayor Murray: ‘Give Seattle More Buses’

Study Finds Widespread Poverty Among U.S. Public School Children

Supreme Court to Decide Whether Gays Nationwide Can Marry

Three Ideas for Inclusive Cities: How Raleigh, Seattle, and Others Are Bringing Everyone Into the Fold

This Rust-Belt Town’s Survival Strategy Is All About Giving Workers Control

Vermonters Lobby for Public Bank—and Win Millions In Public Investment Instead

Green-Energy Inspiration Off the Coast of Denmark

THE VATICAN

Down-To-Earth Pope Scores Hit In Asia

Press Response To ‘The Punching Pope’

Pope Mania Builds In The Philippines

Catholicism And Me: Philippines

Philippines: Is Church Role Waning?

TOPICAL

AIRASIA FLIGHT 8501

Indonesian Divers Retrieve AirAsia Flight Data Recorder From Sea

AirAsia Plane ‘Fuselage Located’

CLIMATE CHANGE

Corals Under Threat From Rapidly Changing Ocean Conditions

Former PDX Mayor To Lead New Climate Initiative

Ocean Life Faces Mass Extinction, Broad Study Says

Low NW Snowfall Offers Preview Of Warmer Climate  

Scientists: Earth Is Beyond Four Of Nine ‘Planetary Boundaries’

2014 Was the Warmest Year Ever Recorded on Earth

EBOLA

BBC SPECIAL REPORT — Ebola Crisis

 VIDEO: A Nurse Deploys to Fight Ebola

Ebola Orphans Cast Out By Communities

Ebola Nurse No Longer Critically Ill

Ebola Cases Declining In West Africa

Possible Ebola Cases Flown To UK

FRENCH MAGAZINE OFFICE ATTACK

Huge Show of Solidarity in Paris Against Terrorism

Paris March Against Terror Draws Huge Crowds and 40 World Leaders

Terror Attacks in Paris: The Victims  

Video Shows Paris Gunman Pledging Allegiance to Islamic State

France To Deploy 10,000 Troops

Reprisals Feared as Charlie Hebdo Publishes New Muhammad Cartoon

France Mourns Attack Victims and Intensifies Hunt for Terrorists

Emotion Mixes With Politics as 4 Killed at Paris Market Are Buried in Jerusalem

Al-Qaeda In Yemen Claims Responsibility For Paris Attack In Video Message

Twelve Held Over Paris Attacks

Paris Gunman Buried In Secret Grave

TERRORISM

Jihadism Born in a Paris Park and Fueled in the Prison Yard

A Sleeper Cell, And A Nation’s Worst Fears

Obama Presents Proposals To Counter Cyberattacks

From Teenage Angst to Jihad

At Least 2 Killed In Antiterror Raid By The Belgian Police

After Attacks, France and Germany Seek to Avert Backlash Against Muslims and Jews

ISIS Release 350 Yazidis In Iraq

OH CANADA

Down the years, lots of people have threatened to do this.  ISIS cannot be as bright as we sometimes think if they seriously believe this will work for them when it failed for everyone else.  Video repeats ISIS calls for Canada attacks

Now that they have sounded the alert, it’s time to take out the sugar cans.  Bank of Canada warns economy could be in for a rough ride

This isn’t nearly enough.  Probation For Teen Who Plead Guilty In Rehtaeh Parsons Case

SHORTS

Third Man Arrested In Ottawa Terrorist Probe

Cybersecurity To Cost Ottawa As Much As $100-Million

Real Change For Aboriginal Women Begins With The End Of Prostitution

GOOD EXAMPLES

We thought this was really cool.  Croatians Elect Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic as Their First Female President

We agree with this totally.  Canadian Amanda Lindhout spent 460 harrowing days in captivity in Somalia. Her survival is extraordinary — even more so is what unfolded upon her return. This resilient woman has emerged as a role model for compassion, a true humanitarian.

Vive le France.  France ‘To Protect All Religions’

SHORTS

U.K. “Cyber Grannies” Use Skype To Teach People In India

France Awards Citizenship To Lassana Bathily, Man Who Hid Hostages From Paris Gunman

A Baltimore Public School Teacher Explains Why It Pays to Put Kids in Control

BAD EXAMPLES

We’re not so sure this is a good idea.  It’s like who is watching whom?  And when will they all start watching us?  F.B.I. Is Broadening Surveillance Role, Report Shows

We did not know this and the two of us who live here are not pleased.  Study: WA Has Most Regressive Tax System In US

I’m not sure I like what this says about his constituency.  Virginia Politician Serves 2 Terms: In Jail and in the State Legislature

SHORTS

Need Some Espionage Done? Hackers Are For Hire Online

Trophy Hunters Decimate Bears In BC Valley

Nine Wildlife Seizures In 2014 Highlight Lao Pdr’s Role In Trafficking

EXPLORATION, HISTORY, SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

This is absolutely fascinating.  The best singers in the ocean

Sounds like it is past time to get moving on this one. Shaky Ground: Few In B.C. Are Prepared For The Sleeping Monster That Could Awake At Any Time

I don’t think I have ever read anything quite like this.  People Used to Sleep Twice a Night, With a Break in Between: 7 Ways to Connect With Our Wild Human Roots

HERE ON EARTH

When Earth Was A Frozen Snowball

The Biggest Fruit In The World

Who, What, Why: What Is Thundersnow?

OUTER SPACE

The Man Who Can Send You To Mars

Space Station Crew Temporarily Moves to Russian Side Over Fears of Ammonia Leak

Lost Beagle2 Probe Found On Mars

FROM JUST ABOUT ANYWHERE

Eight Ideas That Changed Music

The Skinny on Moving Under Sand

The Tiniest Vampires In The World

OTHER TECHNOLOGY

Language Translation Tech Starts to Deliver on Its Promise

VIDEO: What If You Could Print Your Next Car?

How To Discover A New Lifeform

NASA EARTH OBSERVATORY IMAGES

The Earth Observatory’s mission is to share with the public the images, stories, and discoveries about climate and the environment that emerge from NASA research, including its satellite missions, in-the-field research, and climate models.

THE GREEN AGENDA

How Georgia Became The Biggest Electric Vehicle Market

Where Are The Green Cars?

Obama Administration to Unveil Plans to Cut Methane Emissions

2,000 Seattleites Have Given Up A Personal Car In Favor Of Car2Go

 Canada Finds New Oil Markets To Counter U.S. Keystone Rejection

In 10 Years, No One In Helsinki Will Even Want to Own a Car: 3 Simple Ideas That Are Making Cities Sustainable

HEALTH

How Smokers Metabolize Nicotine Could Predict Best Way To Quit: Study

Cancer and Chemotherapy

A Slimming Plan Just For You?

How Stress Kills Compassion

6 Challenges And 6 Rewards Of Being Young And Sobrer

12 Simple Food Swaps That Make Healthy Eating Easy

PULSE

By David B. Grinberg — Strategic Communications Advisor, Writer/Blogger/Editor, Former Journalist

Work Flexibility is #3 Business Priority in 2015

It’s hard to believe that some 21st century employers are still stuck in the Stone Age when it comes to adopting smart workplace flexibility programs (also known as “work flex”). Put simply, work flex saves time and money while increasing employee performance, business productivity and profits. Work flex lends itself to a more healthy work-life balance for employees, which increases morale, job satisfaction, engagement and productivity.

That’s why expanding work flex is my recommended #3 top business priority for the year ahead. However, embracing and implementing modern-day work flex policies and procedures are problematic for companies with an antiquated leadership and management mentality. Some old-school employers remain intransigent to offering work flex options to their employees, despite the obvious cost benefits explained below.

To read the entire blog ~and we highly recommend it ~ please go here.

LIFESTYLE

To Fall in Love With Anyone, Do This

Is There A Smarter Way To Fail?

What Workers Hate About TV Depictions Of Their Profession

Parcel for Sale: Plenty of Space. Very Quiet. Light? Well …

These traits will get you hired

NORTHSTAR COMICS

We’ve collected what we consider the most wholesome, family-oriented and genuinely humorous comic strips we could find on the Net.  They include:  Adam@Home, Calvin & Hobbes, Emmylou, For Better or For Worse, Foxtrot Classics, Garfield, Get Fuzzy, and Peanuts.  Either click the banner or this link.

BEST OF THE NET

Flying Penguins: Penguins are strong and graceful swimmers, using their wings as flippers to propel themselves to surprising bursts of speed. Check out a photographer’s labors to capture them.

How Bison Survive Winter in the Northern Great Plains:  A bison exhales and the frigid winter air condenses the moisture to a fog. He dips his head low—a burly, mussed mass of fur caked with snow—and sweeps his muzzle across the snow. Another snort, another sweep. The plains are cold and blanketed in snow, and he is hungry

Restoring and Protecting a Vital River:  Federal botanist Joe Sirotnak never seems to tire. Restoring and protecting the Rio Grande/Bravo in Big Bend National Park, Sirotnak is an inspiration to workers on both sides of the US-Mexico border.

Photos: Top images from around the globe

FROM NORTHSTAR

 Testament Ad Graphic

WRATH OF THE TESTAMENT

It is an America gone mad from the addiction to war and desperate for resources beyond her own borders.  A military dictatorship controls the country and life is grim. The Republic is fighting for its very survival and for decades, especially with Latin America.

This is the world of the United States Coast Guard cutter Testament, a cybernetic patrol boat, and her six-person crew.  Her mission, and those of her sister craft, is simple.

Quench the rebellion and stop the flow of Americans seeking refuge in Canada. Kill when expedient.  Deliver the survivors to the Bellingham Re-Education Center.

A simple operational order and one which has served America well.  Until Testament

For a preview:  Go Here

For the kindle book: ($3.99) at amazon.com

NORTHSTAR MEDIA SERVICES

minstrel312@Aol.com

Business Correspondence,  Communications Consulting, Classified And Other Advertising Copy Writing, Editing, Ghost Writing, Humor  Jokes & Monologues, Online Research, Proofreading, Song Lyrics, Speeches, Special Projects

NORTHSTAR MEDIA SERVICES

minstrel312@Aol.Com

ALL CREATURES, GREAT AND SMALL

This is not good news for one of nature’s most voracious pest controllers.  No Time for Bats to Rest Easy

We definitely applaud this decision.  Hong Kong Retailer Removes Ivory From Shelves

This is good news.  Looks like OR 7 has company.  New Wolf Confirmed In Southern Oregon

SHORTS

The Evolution Of Modern Bird Species Revised By Major New Study

Protection Sought For Hawaii’s Manta Rays

Historic Decision To Allow A Referendum About Hunting In Malta

RELATED LINKS:

Living With Wildlife

BBC’s wildlife finder

National Geographic Daily News – Animals

THE NORTHSTAR JOURNAL ENDORSES:

Amnesty International

Black Sea Agro: Agriculture In The Black Sea Region

Cream Magazine & Millennium Art Gallery

Grittv With Laura Flaunders

Help End World Hunger & Poverty | Heifer International® | Heifer.Org

No Camels – Weekly Israeli Innovation News

Outside Magazine

The SeaDoc Society: People & Science Healing The Sea

Sierra Club

Wildlife Extra magazine

World Wildlife Fund

Writing For Peace

YOU GUYS THINK I MAKE THIS STUFF UP

Would you be beautiful in the ancient world?

Can ‘whale testicle beer’ cheer up an Icelandic winter?

Why would anyone want an eyeball tattoo?

AboutUsjpgABOUT US

The Northstar Journal is a reader supported international non-profit news, commentary and general interest Internet magazine.  Founded as a monthly in 1999, it is the winner of two Hersh “Best Read on the Net Awards” for its coverage of Bosnia and of Washington State’s Nisqually Earthquake.  If you enjoyed this edition and would like to contribute to the next, please go here  For more information, contact Rusty Miller at minstrel312@aol.com

 

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MEDIA HOOLIGANISM IN THE GUISE OF FREEDOM OF SPEECH

New Masthead

A weekly ezine of news, commentary, health, humor and general interest

Sunday, January 11, 2015  

No. 431

“If your two brothers were fighting with sticks, would you give one of them a knife?”  Olha Bereza

Northstar Media Services

Merritt Scott “Rusty” Miller – Editor

Dennis W. Steussy – Associate Editor

Olya Bereza – European Associate

Tree ~ interfaith

MEDIA HOOLIGANISM IN THE GUISE OF FREEDOM OF SPEECH

Hi again from the shores of the Salish Sea.  In the wake of last week’s attack on the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, historian Tom Holland has written, for BBC magazine, an excellent article on both the precedents for and the ramifications of defending freedom of speech.

Despite the fact that I do not believe in violence and particularly not as a social sanction, I can understand what motivates it in this instance and how hard it is to resist, particularly when one believes passionately.

I am not a fan of the kind of humor which incites violence.  There’s an old adage about sticks and stones breaking bones but words never harming.  That has more horse manure in it than a paddock full of Clydesdales.  We’ve been using epithets and insults to hurt one another since the dawn of time.

I am also not an iconoclast.  I’m not mad at anyone and if my wit was likened to a weapon, it would certainly not be a rapier.  I have a Frank Capra/Jimmy Stewart perspective on life and I love good examples.

Near as I can tell by the studying I’ve done, Moses, Mohammed, Jesus, Buddha and Confucius were all genuine human beings who were certainly wise and dedicated to compassionate behavior.  God is a real person to me, someone I can talk to, joke with or simply ask for Her shoulder when tears fill to overflowing.

I think I’d be pretty angry if the media made fun of my beliefs and the things I value.  At the very least, in every respectable household I’ve ever been in, it is considered rude.  It is also cruel and in most cases, incredibly pointless.  It certainly does not engender tolerance, understanding or any of the other nobler values all religions seem to share.

Violence is an extreme reaction and I do not condone it.  But neither do I like media hooliganism practiced under the guise of freedom of speech.  That’s not how this magazine does things.

Okay, once again, gang, thanks for the ear and have a great week, eh?  And yep, if you enjoyed the last edition and would like to kick down a dollar or two for the this one, please go here

See also:  An Imam Explains Why Muslims Hate Seeing Depictions Of The Prophet Muhammad

THE NEWS

This is something all of us need to read.  The #1 reason people die early, in each country

I wonder if Starbucks knows about this.  The world’s top coffee cities

In the wake of the attack on French satirical magazine, our European associate said she hopes this will not provoke another wave of anti-Islamic violence.  We agree and so, apparently, does the Islamic community.  Raising Questions Within Islam After France Shooting:

WORLD

Why Oil Prices Are Still Dropping, In One Simple Chart

Coca-Cola To Cut Up To 1,800 Jobs Worldwide

Iran and Venezuela Push OPEC to Stabilize Falling Oil Prices

Is the War Crimes Court Still Relevant?

AFRICA

Two In U.S. Face Charges After Coup Attempt Fails In Gambia

20 Coptic Christians From Egypt Kidnapped By Gunmen In Libya

The People Pushed Out Of Ethiopia’s Fertile Farmland

Nobel Laureate Wole Soyinka On Africa’s Spirituality

Somali Militants Kill ‘CIA Spies’

US Forces Hold LRA Commander

Shell Agrees Nigeria Oil Spill Deal

Kenya ‘ICC Defense Witness Murdered’

Burundi Party Activists Shot Dead

Zulu Bible Translation Aid Welcomed

In Nigeria, New Boko Haram Suicide Bomber Tactic: ‘It’s a Little Girl’

The Backlash Against African Women

ASIA

Nikkei Sees Worst Day Since March

HK Consults On Political Reform 

Sri Lanka’s Rajapaksa In Poll Defeat

North Korea Seems to Be Closer to Missile-Launching Submarine

Uber Tests a Cargo Delivery Service in Hong Kong

Honda in Japan Distances Itself From U.S. Subsidiary After Record Fine

North Korea Offers U.S. Deal to Halt Nuclear Test

AUSTRALIA & OCEANA

Heat Blamed For Australian Net Fail

Thousands Mourn Cairns Children

South Australia Prepares For Storm

CHINA

Maoists in China, Given New Life, Attack Dissent

China Issues Complaint After North Korean Defector Is Said to Kill 4

China Wants Taxes Paid by Citizens Living Afar

China Pledges Action After Stampede 

Motorola Heads Back Into China 

China’s Inflation Near Five-Year Low

For China, a New Leader in Sri Lanka May Herald a Change in Ties

EUROPE

Ukraine Leader Was Defeated Even Before He Was Ousted

Ukraine Government Seizes Assets in Crimea, From Shipyard to Film Studio  

Prisons Overflowing, Switzerland Considers Exporting Inmates To France And Germany

Euro Countries Take Tough Line Toward Greece

Anti-Immigration Rallies in Germany Defy Calls to Desist

Falling Euro Fans Fears of a Regional Slowdown

French Leader Urges End to Sanctions Against Russia Over Ukraine

After Ban on Beef From Europe, U.S. Gives Green Light to Ireland

Eurozone Economy Slows Further

Merkel’s Visit to Britain Sets New Tone After E.U. Rift

German Government Websites Shut Down, and Ukraine Group Claims Responsibility

Attack In Paris Threatens Germany’s Levels Of Religious Tolerance

U.S. Consolidates Forces in Europe to Save Money

Dresden Protest Against Pegida

Croatia Votes For New President

Defeated SL Leader ‘Sought Army Help’

INDIA

3rd Night Of India-Pakistan Clashes Leave 4 Dead

Recovery Efforts Begin After Deadly Cyclone Slams Eastern India

Obama Could Encounter ‘Very Unhealthy’ Problem On Upcoming India Trip

LATIN AMERICA

Brazil Prepares Indictments in Oil Company Graft Case

McDonald’s running out of French fries in Venezuela

The São Paulo Stock Exchange Expansion Would Be a Good Move

MIDDLE EAST

Lebanon Restricts Syria Refugee Flow

Palestinians Seen Gaining Momentum In Quest For Statehood

Hezbollah Appears To Acknowledge A Spy At The Top

New Courts Offer Pakistan’s Generals The Power They Used To Seize

A Suicide Bomb Attack In The Northern Lebanese City Of Tripoli Has Killed At Least   

Snow Hits Syrian Refugees In Lebanon

Is Islamic State Heading For Lebanon?

Lebanon Profile

Saudi Arabian Blogger ‘Flogged’

Is Launches Assault On Iraqi City

Egypt Sets Parliamentary Poll Date

Winter Storm Hits Mid-East Refugees

Is Police ‘Kidnapped’ In Syria

Blast Kills Dozens In Yemen Capital

RUSSIA

Ukraine Blames Russia For German Hack

Russia Imposes Sex Rules For Drivers

Putin Is Bringing Darkness To The Edge Of Europe

UNITED KINGDOM

Britain’s Domestic Intelligence Chief Calls for Greater Authority for Spies

British Muslim Cleric Sentenced to Life in Prison in Terror Case

Unusual Number Of UK Flowers Bloom

UNITED STATES

Growing Seattle Wonders How To Keep It Real

Obama, in Bid to Ease Home Buying, Cuts Mortgage Insurance Rate

Abel: Youngest Congresswoman In U.S. History Elise Stefanik Takes Her Seat

December Caps a Strong Year for Jobs, but Wages Dip

LA Imports Nearly 85 Percent of Its Water—Can It Change That by Gathering Rain?

Land, Co-ops, Compost: A Local Food Economy Emerges in Boston’s Poorest Neighborhoods

F.B.I. and Justice Dept. Said to Seek Charges for Petraeus

THE VATICAN

Pope Names 15 New Cardinals Reflective of Diversity of the Faithful

TOPICAL

AIRASIA FLIGHT 8501

Indonesia Cracks Down on Aviation Sector After AirAsia Crash

Officials Confident AirAsia Wreckage Has Been Located

Hopes For AirAsia Breakthrough

CLIMATE CHANGE

Climatologists Balk as Brazil Picks Skeptic for Key Post

Climate Change This Week: Foul Fracking Fumes, Solar Sponge, and More!

“They’re driven by love. And they’re fierce.” Naomi Klein on the Climate Heroes Who Inspire Her

EBOLA

Woman Who Saved Family From Ebola Will Attend Nursing School In U.S.

Ebola Drug Trial Starts In Liberia

FRENCH MAGAZINE OFFICE ATTACK

Massacre At French Magazine Office

One Suspect Surrenders In Attack On French Newspaper; Two Others At Large 

In Paris, Solidarity Against Terrorism  

French Humor, Turned Into Tragedy

Paris Suspects ‘Rob Service Station’

Neighbor Says Suspects In Paris Shooting Had ‘Cache Of Arms’

Charlie Hebdo Shooters Killed, Hostage Freed: Police

Multiple Hostages Dead In Paris Kosher Supermarket Attack

All Hostage-Takers Dead: Reports

No Easy Or Obvious Solutions After Charlie Hebdo Attacks In Paris

French Police Seeking Widow Of Slain Terror Suspect, Considered Dangerous Herself

Newspaper Attack Rallies Islamic Extremists

TERRORISM

BBC Special Report:  Islamic State Crisis

Army Trials For Pakistan Insurgents

Paris Attack Reflects a ‘Dangerous Moment’ for Europe

Al Qaeda Trained Suspect In Paris Terror Attack, Official Says

Female Suicide Bomber in Istanbul Kills Officer at Police Station

Why Reams Of Intelligence Did Not Thwart The Paris Attacks

RCMP Charge Two Brothers With Terrorism Related Charges

French Premier Declares ‘War’ On Radical Islam As Paris Girds For Rally

French Police Say Suspect In Attack Evolved From Petty Criminal To Terrorist

In New Era Of Terrorism, Voice From Yemen Echoes As France Declares ‘War’

OH CANADA

My admiration for this young man is beyond words.   Delta Teen Heading To U.S. For Experimental Cancer Treatment

This should never have happened.  I hope the punishment meted out discourages others from doing it as well.  13 Dalhousie Students Suspended Over Sexist Facebook Page

It would be nice to finally know this.  Unlocking The Mystery Of Sir John A. Macdonald’s Birthplace

SHORTS

The Words That Built Canada ~ Canada’s First Prime Minister’s 200th Birthday Jan. 11

Public Safety Minister Steven Blaney Lays Wreath At Charlie Hebdo HQ In Paris

The Uphill Push To Save A Bike-Share Pioneer

GOOD EXAMPLES

We totally approve of this journalist’s behavior and hope it does not lead to a challenge to the American Bill of Rights.  Defiant on Witness Stand, Times Reporter Says Little

I have a feeling Allah, Moses and Jesus are all cheering this man on.  Teaching Islam’s ‘Forgotten’ Side as Germany Changes

I personally think this is a good idea and an appropriate use of some of my tax dollars.  Obama Plan Would Help Many Go to Community College Free

BAD EXAMPLES

This is outrageous.  Toronto-Born Woman Who Died After Exposing Indian MP Husband’s Alleged Affair Was Poisoned

This is the equivalent of a good spanking and a well-deserved one.  Honda Fined for Violations of Safety Law

This makes a lot of sense.  Sigh.  New Russian law includes transsexuals in long list of people with ‘disorders’ banned from driving

EXPLORATION, HISTORY, SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

This is comforting.  Apocalypse When?

This is a real good reason to go interstellar traveling.  Stars Go Missing In Black Void

Even though we’ve been doing this for years, it’s nice to learn it’s apparently okay.  A Green Light for Using Rain Barrel Water on Garden Edibles

HERE ON EARTH

‘Walking On Water’ In Slovakia

Seven Of The World’s Riskiest Roads

Can Empathy for Birds Make Us Happier? Ten Breakthroughs in the Science of a Meaningful Life

OUTER SPACE

‘Alien Earth’ Among Eight New Planets

So Many Earth-Like Planets, So Few Telescopes

In a Far-Off Galaxy, 2 Black Holes Dance Toward an Explosive Union

Interactive: How big is space?

Europe To Press Ahead On New Rocket

FROM JUST ABOUT ANYWHERE

Do Local Orcas Need A Room Of Their Own?

Unusual Number Of UK Flowers Bloom

Buildings That Make Themselves

OTHER TECHNOLOGY

Audi’s Brain? Check In The Boot

Obama To Announce Cybersecurity Plans In State Of The Union Preview

A Flying Car For Everyone

NASA EARTH OBSERVATORY IMAGES

The Earth Observatory’s mission is to share with the public the images, stories, and discoveries about climate and the environment that emerge from NASA research, including its satellite missions, in-the-field research, and climate models.

THE GREEN AGENDA

Vermont Yankee Nuclear Plant Begins Slow Process of Closing

Experts Say That Battle on Keystone Pipeline Is Over Politics, Not Facts

Man Convicted of Environmental Terrorism Is Freed

HEALTH

Harvard Ideas on Health Care Hit Home, Hard

The Super-Short Workout and Other Fitness Trends

From a Pile of Dirt, Hope for a Powerful New Antibiotic

Elastic Implant ‘Reverses Paralysis’

PULSE:

By David B. Grinberg, Strategic Communications Advisor, Writer/Blogger/Editor, Former Journalist

WORKFORCE DIVERSITY IS #2 BUSINESS PRIORITY IN NEW YEAR

Every New Year brings with it unique challenges and opportunities for individuals as well as employers. This post will examine fostering workforce diversity as the #2 business priority in the year ahead. My prior post addressed strengthening cybersecurity as the #1 business priority for 2015.

Forthcoming posts in this five-part series will focus on how companies can increase productivity, profits and create model workplaces by expanding work flexibility (#3), maximizing social media (#4) and firing malicious managers (#5).

To read the entire blog ~and we highly recommend it ~ please go here.

LIFESTYLE

How Should We React To The Charlie Hebdo Massacre?

Who first said ‘The pen is mightier than the sword’?

Study Finds More Reasons to Get and Stay Married

The Battle to Belong

NORTHSTAR COMICS

We’ve collected what we consider the most wholesome, family-oriented and genuinely humorous comic strips we could find on the Net.  They include:  Adam@Home, Calvin & Hobbes, Emmylou, For Better or For Worse, Foxtrot Classics, Garfield, Get Fuzzy, and Peanuts.  Either click the banner or this link.

BEST OF THE NET

Video: An African’s Message for America

Video: How It Happens | Volcanic Eruptions

Epic Hunt By Fastest Fish

Dwarf Elephant Beats Up Big Rival

The Truth About Free Will

FROM NORTHSTAR

Testament Ad Graphic

WRATH OF THE TESTAMENT

It is an America gone mad from the addiction to war and desperate for resources beyond her own borders.  A military dictatorship controls the country and life is grim. The Republic is fighting for its very survival and for decades, especially with Latin America.

This is the world of the United States Coast Guard cutter Testament, a cybernetic patrol boat, and her six-person crew.  Her mission, and those of her sister craft, is simple.

Quench the rebellion and stop the flow of Americans seeking refuge in Canada. Kill when expedient.  Deliver the survivors to the Bellingham Re-Education Center.

A simple operational order and one which has served America well.  Until Testament

For a preview:  Go Here 

For the kindle book: ($3.99) at amazon.com

 NORTHSTAR MEDIA SERVICES

minstrel312@Aol.Com

Business Correspondence,  Communications Consulting, Classified And Other Advertising Copy Writing, Editing, Ghost Writing, Humor  Jokes & Monologues, Online Research, Proofreading, Song Lyrics, Speeches, Special Projects

NORTHSTAR MEDIA SERVICES

minstrel312@Aol.Com

ALL CREATURES, GREAT AND SMALL

This is good news.  For the second year running record numbers of whales spotted off the coast of Southern California

This is fascinating.  An animal that herds its own meat

This sounds like a real fun place to live.  Where polar bears outnumber people

SHORTS

Bewick’s swans fly from Eastern Europe to Gloucestershire in great numbers 

Grey Seal found in a Merseyside field 20 miles from the sea is doing OK 

New species of gecko lizard has been found in Central India

RELATED LINKS:

Living With Wildlife

BBC’s wildlife finder

National Geographic Daily News – Animals

THE NORTHSTAR JOURNAL ENDORSES:

Amnesty International

Black Sea Agro: Agriculture In The Black Sea Region 

Cream Magazine & Millennium Art Gallery

Grittv With Laura Flaunders

Help End World Hunger & Poverty | Heifer International® | Heifer.Org

No Camels – Weekly Israeli Innovation News

Outside Magazine

The SeaDoc Society: People & Science Healing The Sea

Sierra Club

Wildlife Extra magazine

World Wildlife Fund

Writing For Peace

YOU GUYS THINK I MAKE THIS STUFF UP

India donkeys honored for hard work

Malaysian government gives homeless kitchenware

Shove it kittens, koalas need mittens

Rusty Oval May 2014ABOUT US

The Northstar Journal is a reader-supported weekly international non-profit news, commentary and general interest Internet magazine.  Founded as a monthly in 1999, it is the winner of two Hersh “Best Read on the Net Awards” for its coverage of Bosnia and of Washington State’s Nisqually Earthquake.  If you enjoyed this edition and would like to contribute to the next, please go here  For more information, contact Rusty Miller at minstrel312@aol.com

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment