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


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.


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


Cheaper Oil ‘Will Not Boost Growth’

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


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


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 In ‘Extinction Calamity’

3D-Printed Knuckle Dusters Seized

Hopes Are High’ To Save Remaining NZ Whales


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


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 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


The Case For Aid To Central America

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


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


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


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


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


In Spanish Abuse Scandal, a More Open Vatican

Pope Appoints 20 New Cardinals



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’


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


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


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?


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


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


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


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


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


See The Unknown Side Of Kilimanjaro

Which Life Form Dominates Earth?

Seven Of The World’s Riskiest Roads


Europe’s Mini-Space Shuttle Returns

Doomed Stars Found At Nebula’s Heart

Planck Puts New Date On First Stars


Biggest Myth About Phone Privacy

Net Pioneer Warns Of Data Dark Age

Drone To Scan For Ancient Amazonia


The Network That Runs The World

An Incubator For Innovation

IBM’s Watson Turns Japanese And Moves Into Robots


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.


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


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


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.


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’


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.


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



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

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. 


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



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.


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


Living With Wildlife

BBC’s wildlife finder

National Geographic Daily News – Animals


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


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



About minstrel312

MERRITT SCOTT MILLER Bio Wrath of the Testament Author and Northstar Journal editor Merritt Scott (Rusty) Miller is a former newspaper reporter who has published extensively in the Pacific Northwest and several times nationally. A U.S. Navy veteran of the Vietnam War, he began his career in the alternative media of the mid-Seventies. His own Sacramento-based monthly ~ Rapline ~ drew praise from Sacramento BEE metro columnist Herb Michelson in a column published that that newspaper; and from Berkeley Film Quarterly editor and author of the bestsellers Ecotopia and Ecotopia Emerging, Ernest Callenbach. A Northern California native with roots in British Columbia, Mr. Miller has written for several Northwest community newspapers, United Press International, the daily Portland Oregonian and for such Seattle publications as the Post-Intelligencer, The Seattle Press and the University Herald. As an investigative reporter for the McMinnville, Oregon News-Register ~ and in conjunction with CBS News in New York, Washington, DC and Flagstaff, Arizona ~ Mr. Miller localized a story of alleged Contra gun-running by an international air freight company headquartered in that Willamette Valley community. During the 1987 Angel Complex Fire in southern Oregon, Mr. Miller worked as the lead dispatcher for the U.S. Forest Service and covered the disaster for National Public Radio and as a special writer for the Portland, Oregonian. His 1988 series on child abuse for a rural weekly earned him praise from the Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association. In his career as a journalist, Mr. Miller has interviewed a Nobel peace laureate; an internationally renowned abstract artist; a popular folksinger and various Pacific Northwest elected officials, include a state treasurer and governor. An accomplished travel book writer, Mr. Miller has penned demographic and feature copy for the “Best Choices” series on Eastern Washington, British Columbia, Virginia, South Carolina and Atlanta. As either a contract or staff publicist, he has served a host of clients including the Olympia Music Festival, Umpqua Valley Community Hospital, the City of Canyonville, the Tiller Ranger District, The English School, the Yamhill County Board of Commissioners, Yamhill County Assessor Kim Worrell and Workers of Oregon Development. His freelance publications include: United Press International, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, the Portland Oregonian, Forest World, American Trucking, Trucks, Oregon Adventures, Oregon Education, Old Oregon, The Entertainer, the Seattle Press, the San Juan Island Sounder, Northwest Passage, Northwest Connection, Seattle Source, Seattle Forum, the University of Colorado’s Writers Forum, Clouds, The long Beach Literary Journal and the Pacific Media Group. He has worked since the age of 13 and has been a hop harvester, professional musician, civil servant, forester, convenience market clerk, lumber mill worker, temporary word processor, technical writer and editor. He has also led a social services research and development team and has six years of radio and telephone communications experience. His interests include astronomy, aviation, camping, Canada, communications, conversation, cooking, dancing, economic development, education, environmentalism, exploration, film/DVDs, fine dining, government, green technology, health. History, human rights, International community, Internet media, law, literature, marine engineering & design, medicine, music, nature, networking, outdoors, pets, photography, romance, science, sexuality, technology, travel, water, wildlife His honors and awards include: Letter of Appreciation - Amnesty International; US Senator Patti Murray Letter of Appreciation for The Northstar Journal Blog; Editors Choice, International Library of Poetry; Congressman Edward Murray Letter of Appreciation; Congressman Frank Chopp Letter of Appreciation; Hersch Best Read on the Net Award for The Northstar Journal; President Bill Clinton Letter of Appreciation; Workers Of Oregon Development Certificate of Appreciation; City of Canyonville Police Department Certificate of Appreciation; City of Canyonville Mayor’s Office Certificate of Appreciation; California Supreme Court Justice Rose Bird Letter of Appreciation; Northwest Magazine Editorial Board Letter of Appreciation for Rain; Editorial Award, Society of Professional Journalists; Sacramento Bee Metro Column; Honor Roll: California State University Long Beach; Deans List: Long Beach City; Mr. Miller currently resides in Seattle, Washington, where he continues to edit and publish The Northstar Journal. He is working on two novels concurrently and a sequel to Wrath of the Testament.
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