A weekly ezine of news, commentary, health, humor and general interest The Magazine With Heart

A weekly ezine of news, commentary, health, humor and general interest
The Magazine With Heart

News & Commentary, Our Window On Europe – France’s Green Roofs, Good Examples, Bad Examples, Our World & Beyond, The Green Agenda, Health, Lifestyle, Northstar Comics, Thought Of The Week, Best Of The Net, All Creatures Great & Small, Northstar Endorses, You Guys Think We Make This Stuff Up, About Us

Pacem, Libertatem, Justitiam

September 13, 2015  Vol. 8 No. 52

Rusty Miller – Editor

Olya Bereza – European Associate Editor

Dennis Steussy – American Associate Editor



Hi again from the shores of the Salish Sea.  Well, taking a break from the hard news this week, I ran across this on the same day I watched an amazon.com food delivery demonstration on an American national morning television news show.

Soon Enough, This Robot Could Be Delivering Your Packages

Why do I have this like, “Yeah, right,” attitude mystifies me a bit for perhaps the same reason self-driving transportation freaks me out more than a little.  It seems to put a lot of power into the wrong places.

If the mode is centrally governed and grid failure occurs because of a solar storm, sabotage, hacking or electronic attack, how many crash and burns will that involve?

And if they are autonomously controlled by what is packaged into them, are they any less vulnerable than anything else that has come off the assembly line and been subject to recall for everything from bad brakes to faulty airbags?

I am not at all opposed to technological evolution when it is appropriately applied and when it does not threaten life on this planet or diminish us as a species.  When I first reached this perspective about four decades ago, there didn’t seem to be a whole lot of people who felt the same way.

Now I live in a city and state and region where about 15 million people do.   To me, this is positive human evolution.  I am an optimist with bad days so it is not that hard to vault this into a prayer that what this might just also mean is that we will perhaps yet be worthy of the love of the gods we claim to worship and the planet we profess to love.

Thanks for the ear, then, gang.  Have a good week.  And remember this magazine is ~ in large part ~ supported by small contributions from folks like you.  To express your appreciation, please go here


These people manned the wall for us.  Now they need our help.  Ousted As Gay, Aging Veterans Are Battling Again For Honorable Discharges

Is it just me or is this not obvious?  Solution To Refugee Crisis Is To End Syria’s Civil War, UN Official Says

Since one of us lives there, this was very, very sad for all of us to read.  Nearly 8,000 Killed In Ukraine Conflict, U.N. Says


Snakebite Antidote Is Running Out

Global Stocks Surge, Led By Japan, As Investors Scent Fresh Stimulus


U.N., Facing Abuse Scandal, To Withhold Pay Of Peacekeepers Accused Of Misconduct

A Hunting Ban Saps a Village’s Livelihood

Blast Kills 7 At Nigerian Camp For People Fleeing Boko Haram


Massive Flooding Swamps Japan City

Japan Post To Raise $11.5bn By Listing

In Pakistan, U.S. Aid Agency’s Efforts Produce Dubious Results

Investigations Stymied in Malaysia, Critics of Najib Razak Take Their Case Global


China’s August Imports Fall 14.3%

Q. And A.: Tony Saich On What Chinese Want From Their Leaders

For Many Chinese, Scant Time For Holidays


Convictions In Mumbai Train Blasts

Explosion In India Town Kills Dozens

Indian Police Look for Man Blamed for Blast That Killed 90


Turkey ‘Bombs PKK’ After Fatal Attack

Scores Killed In Mecca As Crane Crashes Into Grand Mosque

Premier Quits With Cabinet, Roiling Egypt

Take A Walk Through Israel And Gaza, A Year After The War

Clashes, Militant Bombing, Kill Nine In Southeast Turkey


Eurozone Growth Revised Upwards

Germany Says ‘Significant Progress’ Made at Ukraine Meeting

Body Of U.S. Tourist In Spain Is Found, And Arrest Is Made

Berlin Airport Used In Cold War Airlift Gets A New Humanitarian Mission

The Political Crisis In Northern Ireland

Catalans Campaigning For Independence March In Barcelona

Ukraine: International Court’s Jurisdiction Is Accepted

Northern Ireland Must Resist Pull Of The Past


Russia Profile

Why Russians Hate America. Again.

Russia Defends the Presence of Its Military Advisers in Syria


Cuba to Release 3,522 Prisoners Before Pope Francis’ Visit

Pope Wants Poor Helped in Climate Debate

Pope Francis Announces Changes For Easier Marriage Annulments


The Queen Sets A Record Worthy Of Her

BA Plane Catches Fire In Las Vegas

Engine Breach Suspected In BA Fire

With Jeremy Corbyn Elected As New Leader, Britain’s Labour Party Takes A Hard Left Turn

10 Top Places To Spot Wildlife In And Around The Lake District »



Canadian Banks Helping Bend Rules To Move Money Out Of China

Junex Prepares To Kick-Start Quebec’s Oil Industry

NAFTA Auto Parts Makers Mount Drive To Sweeten TPP Deal

Government Red Tape A Barrier To Canadians’ Plans To Assist Refugees

Bombardier Rejects Chinese Offer For Railway Unit: Documents

Ontario First Nations To Begin Fundraising For Inquiry

The Queen Of Canada Marks A Special Anniversary


Threat To Arizona’s Salt River Horses Spurs New Battle Over Western Lands

Yazidis Settle In Nebraska, But Roots Run Deep In Iraq

Jailed Kentucky Clerk Released

California’s Valley Of Flowers

Police Officers Charged In Freddie Gray’s Death To Be Tried In Baltimore  


China’s Love Affair With Brazil

Mexico’s New Wave Of Mural Painters Are Updating An Old Tradition, Promoting Real And Virtual Artworks

A Venezuelan In Silicon Valley Finds A Niche In Finance


Abbott Likely To Face Leadership Spill Before End Of Year

Asylum Seekers Arrive On Lesbos Island To Begin Journey Through Europe (Video)

‘Bionic Model’, Aussie With Down Syndrome Star At NYFW

ACTU Backs Down From Taking Further Action Against Heydon

Police Reveal Details About William Tyrrell’s Suspected Kidnapper

Dutton Apologises For ‘Vulgar’ Climate Change Joke



Migrants Who Survived Shipwreck Are Grateful, But Disillusioned

Germany ‘Can Cope With More Migrants’

Thousands Seeking New Lives In Europe Enter Hungary As Country Works On 4-Metre High Border Fence

Germany And Sweden Press For EU Deal On Quotas For Migrants

EU Nations ‘Must Take Extra Refugees’

Hungarian Army In Migrant Action Drills

Religious Groups Make Leaps Of Faith To Support Syrian Refugees

Canada Announces Money for Refugees, but Not Taking More In

Hungarians Say Images Of Harshness Toward Migrants Are Unfair

Hungarian Camerawoman Apologizes, But Video Of Food Tossed At Penned Migrants Stirs Fresh Outrage

Migrants Receive Aid In Brussels Camp


U.S. Revamping Rebel Force Fighting Isis In Syria

UK ‘Would Repeat Syria Drone Strike’

A New Wave of Migrants Flees Iraq, Yearning for Europe

US Official: ‘IISS Making Chemical Arms’

U.S. Drops Charges That Professor Shared Technology With China

Islamic State Ordnance Shows Traces Of Chemical Agents, U.S. Says

Shiite Militia Releases Video Of Turkish Workers Kidnapped In Iraq


El Niño Shaping Up To Be One Of The Strongest Ever

For California, El Niño’s Dark Clouds Could Mean Rain but Also Trouble

Study Predicts Antarctica Ice Melt If All Fossil Fuels Are Burned

Ocean Warming Will Cause Marine Species To Relocate »

OUR WINDOW ON EUROPE by Olya Bereza – European Associate Editor

IMG_20150723_161622 Reduced


Hello Rusty:

Recently enjoying a meal in nice restaurant with an amazing view of the Carpathians evergreen mountain forests made me think how we are actually attached to Mother Nature.  And trying to deny it by all modern technologies, steel and glass buildings, boiling hot in summer, just leads to additional stress if not further.

In line with that, it was interesting learn that there is now a French law requiring new buildings with green roofs.  These specify partial roof coverage with gardens or solar panels.

According to the following article, it is still an amazing move forward on green agenda and great example to other polluted capitals and big cities all over the world. London Green and Solar Roof Conference 28th September 2015 (and the French Solar Green Roof Law that Is Not Yet a Law) 

Who knows?  Maybe a shift in consciousness is not far from us and we will see the day when each house will become sustainable with a solar energy panels and ~ to add more oxygen to polluted streets ~` greenery on rooftops.

In my personal experience, even stuffing a room with lots of plants makes it a much more comfortable place. That is what we strive for even more then food- good air.

Okay, that’s it for now.  Stay safe, Mishka.



This story is awesome.  Speer’s Daughter And The Syrian Refugees

This is definitely a step in the right direction.  OPP To Issue Report On Missing And Murdered Aboriginal Men, Women

This is progress.  At least they’re discussing this sitting down.  U.S., Chinese Officials Meet on Cyber Security Issues: White House


This is about as scurrilous an example of abuse of technology as we’ve run across in some while.  Porn App Took Secret Photos Of Users

I am sorry this happened.  I am glad they got caught.  Large Haul Of Illegal Wildlife Parts Seized In Malaysia And Three Arrested

How many must die like this before we get the idea that war is not just about what we want from it?  Airstrikes Take Toll on Civilians in Yemen War


I was certainly glad to read this.  European Court Rejects Final Appeal To Allow Seal Hunting

I sincerely hope this works out for her.  A Dying Young Woman’s Hope in Cryonics and a Future

I think this is an excellent application.  With Website to Research Colleges, Obama Abandons Ranking System


A 2,500-Year-Old Unsolved Mystery

Homo Naledi, New Species In Human Lineage, Is Found In South African Cave

The Oil-Rich City Betting On Drones


The Nuke That Blitzed Space

No Surf, But Maybe Dunes In NASA’s Latest Pluto Photos

3 Space Station Astronauts Safely Return to Earth


Internet Of Bees: Intel Tech Puts Backpacks On Bees To Track World Bee Collapse

The World’s Best Place To See Stars

Video: ScienceTake | The Hummingbird’s Tongue


Apple and Other Tech Companies Tangle With U.S. Over Data Access

Soon Enough, This Robot Could Be Delivering Your Packages

Answers To Questions About Apple’s New Products


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.


Melting Ice Isn’t Opening Arctic To Oil Bonanza

Can Canadian Oil Green-Clean Itself?

High-End Home Design For The Masses

Duke Energy To Pay Fine Over Power Plant Violations

Gene-based insecticide is protecting plants the natural way


Better Sleep for the New School Year 

What Are A Hospital’s Costs? Utah System Is Trying To Learn

Be A Rebel This Year, And Let Your Kids Walk To School

Thanks To 3D Printing, Prosthetics Can Now Be Built Faster And Way Cheaper Than Ever Before.


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.


tow earth children

Happy changes do happen to our beautiful Earth and its inhabitants:

How Wolves Change Rivers – YouTube http://www.youtube.com/embed/ysa5OBhXz-Q?feature=player

To subscribe and experience Thoughts in their original, please contact Ame at SpringggRain@aol.com


Fishing Cat Found In Coastal Cambodia For First Time In 12 Years »

First Glimpse Of 2015 Wildlife Photographer Of The Year Images »

The Story Behind BBC One’s Chester Zoo Drama, Our Zoo »


Small Testament Cover



A super power no longer, a resource hungry and repressive America faces a Latin American armada rampaging its west coast and a strong, silent and powerful Canada manning the North Wall.  The fires of rebellion burn in the Pacific Northwest and it is into this crucible and forge that the cybernetic patrol boat Testament and her crew of three men and three women are thrust.  Individuals of duty and conscience both, when they join the other side, all Hell breaks loose.  A rollicking adventure for anyone who loves the sea, a good yarn and characters which spring to life even as Testament herself leaps the waves.  Now available in both paperback and Kindle at amazon.com


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



Whatever your editing, writing, tutoring or consulting needs, chances are good I can handle them.  Negotiable rates, flexible payment plan, Paypal and from your email to me and back.  Simple, friendly, professional.  I also accept barter and trade.  If you need it done quickly, simply and for a price tailored to your budget, shoot me a brief project description at minstrel312@aol.com  I’ll get back to you one way or another within 24 hours. For a list of specific services provided, please go to http://nstarmed.wordpress.com  My name is Merritt Scott Miller and my friends and clients call me “Rusty”.  I look forward to hearing from you.



These are cute.  The Tardigrade: Practically Invisible, Indestructible ‘Water Bears’

Let’s hope this works.  A New Diet May Help Polar Bears Survive As Global Warming Intensifies »

If this doesn’t move you, yep, time to ask the Wiz for a heart, eh?  A Mother’s Long Distance Call Help Their Seal Pups Find Them


Good News For Tigers As Nepal Extends Parsa Wildlife

Melting Sea-Ice Driving Walruses On Land

In Focus: A Future For Cheetahs By Dr. Laurie Marker And Suzi Eszterhas

The Fight To Save A Prairie Chicken


Aging A Whale Or Dolphin

Animal Daily News – National Geographic

Attracting Wildlife To Your Garden

Creating A Wood

Discover Kielder: A Guide To This Magical Forest

Dive Sites In The World – 50 Best

Diving With Marine Wildlife

Identifying Birds And Mammals In The Field

Insider’s Guide To Treating An Injured Baboon

Koala Facts

Looking After An Orphaned Hippo

A Spotter’s Guide To Mustelids

Red Panda Facts

Rehabilitating An Ex-Circus Lion

Relocating Giraffes

Responsible Tiger Watching

Sumatran Rhinoceros

Whale Sharks – A Field Guide

White Rhino Facts

Wildlife Finder – BBC


Amnesty International


Grittv With Laura Flaunders

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

Mother Nature Network

No Camels – Weekly Israeli Innovation News

Outside Magazine

SeaDoc Society: People & Science Healing The Sea

Showcase Magazine:  Today’s Media For Artful Living

Sierra Club

Wildlife Extra magazine

World Wildlife Fund

Writing For Peace


Bizarrely British Office Behaviour

A Food That Forever Changed Macau

Wedding Crasher Tries To Run Over Bride, Guests In South-West Sydney


The Northstar Journal is an international news, commentary and general interest weekly Internet magazine reaching readers in North America, Europe, the Middle East, Asia, Africa and Oceana.  We also have a website linked to both Facebook and Linked-In.  While we occasionally accept classified advertising, we are otherwise entirely reader-supported. If you enjoyed this edition and would like to contribute to the next, please go here.  For more information and to receive us in your email, contact us at minstrel312@aol.com



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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