The Northstar Journal: The Magazine With Heart

The Northstar Journal: The Magazine With Heart

News & Commentary; From Olya ~ Blockchain – A Global Game Changer; Meade Fischer ~ Hawai;  Good Examples; Bad Examples; Our Science Section Abridged; The Green Agenda; Health; Lifestyle; Funzone; From Northstar; All Creatures Great & Small; Northstar Endorses; You Guys Think We Make This Stuff Up; About Us

Pacem, Libertatem, Justitiam

July 24, 2016  Vol. 8 No. 43

The headline is literally true, as explained in the story below.  Photo © 2016 Merritt Scott Miller

The headline is literally true, as explained in the story below. Photo © 2016 Merritt Scott Miller


Hi again, gang, from the shores of the Salish Sea.  Well, sometimes the pen might be mightier than the sword but the wasp generally triumphs over both, I have noticed.

The little dude in the photo decided to pay me a visit as I was decompressing after a morning with the teenager in the house to whom I am distantly related as cousin (same last name) and with whom I enjoy a grandson relationship.  God took his last grandfather a little early and because the boy’s father needed some extra income and I needed a change of environment from where I was living with some friends in North Seattle, viola.

It’s been a hard last couple of weeks for all of us in the international community and because we here at the magazine feel connected personally, it has been a difficult fortnight as a media person working at home and living with two other people, one of whom also has a home office, from which he runs a modestly successful business of his own, and the other, a student.

It works well most of the time because it’s a big house and we’re all responsible adults.  We work hours appropriate what we do and share basic household responsibilities. as a naturally shared responsibility.

The teenager in the house is special.  He’s extremely intelligent and has the awareness of an old soul in a young body.  He excels at most of the things to which he applies himself and handles his success with an equanimity more associated with continuing to push his own envelope than in showing other people how good he is.

He loves bikes, cars, music, books, sports, video games and now, I am finding out, photography.  He’s also curious and he’s got the mental equipment for the search.  He’s still a kid with a kid’s impetuousness, etc., and I pray God he never loses that.

The things he does with it sometimes make the hair on the back of my neck stand up but I’d be real hypercritical if I denied having been there and having done that.  It’s not done with malicious intent.

It’s just the envelope pushing part of being a kid, coming into new strengths and new insights.   I’m the adult and like his dad, a combat veteran, so it’s like, “Handle it, Rusty, and stop whining.”

He’s interested in what I do and likes the magazine so he’s in and out of the office whenever my door is open.  We’re on the second floor so it’s open most of the time, just like his dad’s office is downstairs.  So through the monitor, he gets a glimpse of a much larger world, as I experience it from the news/information gathering.

Sometimes what comes through that screen hits hard and I need to go off by myself and do whatever it takes, without letting my other two housemates, see me.  There’s nothing weird about it.  There’s a place out in the back yard at the end of the fishpond, where I have a director’s chair.

It’s private and it’s a place where I can pray, hit on the pipe, have a beer, talk to myself, write in my notebook and yes, sometimes, even shed some tears and stuff.  I always take the camera with me because something else generally happens to make me feel better.   Olya refers to them as “your new friends”.

This photo is the fourth of nine in which this “friend” landed on the table when I was taking a break from writing in the notebook.  I had the camera in my flannel shirt pocket and I just watched, even as the wind curled up the page like a big wave above this little Heavenly messenger with sting and an attitude to go with it.

It was a nice break from the concerns of the world and, I suspect, a necessary reminder that while nations are important, so are “friends” and “neighbors” like this.  When I shared those photos with the teenager in the house, yep, he got the message.  He’s working on spiders and he’s staying up late at night with his real expensive camera doing what a lot of his professional peers get paid big money for doing it.   The kid’s good.  And he’s still growing.

Have a great week, gang, and thanks for the ear.  And Zach, thank you for reminding me that you are also one of God’s creatures, great and small.  And a very special one at that.



This is certainly good news.  US Navy Banned From Using Sonar That Harms Dolphins And Walruses

I thought this was amazing.  They Found An 800-Year-Old Pot Filled With Old Seeds. See What Grew When They Planted Them

I think the answer to this question lies in the psyche of each and every one of us.  In the Age of ISIS, Who’s a Terrorist, and Who’s Simply Deranged?


Secrecy Reigns As U.N. Seeks A New Secretary General


Giant Quake May Lurk Under Bangladesh

Russia Offers Nuclear Aircraft Carrier To India

Move Over, India. Pakistan Is The Hottest Equity Market In South Asia

Singapore To Act In 1mdb Corruption Case

How Kabali Mania Swept India


In Africa, Birds And Humans Form A Unique Honey Hunting Party

Is There Any Hope For Peace In South Sudan?

Sentence For Oscar Pistorius Challenged By South African Prosecutors

Veterans Group In Zimbabwe Denounces Robert Mugabe

Mali Extends State Of Emergency After 17 Soldiers Are Killed


‘A Matter Of Pride’: Iran’s Foreign Minister Says The Country Looks Forward To Restoring Nuclear Program

Israeli Parliament Passes Law Enabling Ouster Of Legislators

Dozens Of Civilians Reported Dead In U.S.-Led Syria Airstrike

To France From Israel: Lessons On Living With Terror

In Egypt, Many Leaders Quietly Cheered Turkish Coup Plotters

Iran’s President Is Confronted By Scandal Over Inflated Government Wages


Britain Sailing Into Uncharted Waters After Brexit

Dion Replaces More Than Two Dozen Tory-Appointed Ambassadors

UK To Give Up Planned Eu Presidency

Russian Military Begins Baltic Fleet Reinspection After Officer Purge

Moscow Police Report 86% Rise In Online Hate Crime

Google, Trying To Endear Itself To Europe, Spreads $450 Million Around

‘There’s No More Money:’ Medvedev Faces Russia’s Economic Woes With Austerity Plan

One Way To Get Around Brexit: Become An E-Resident Of Estonia

VW Takes €2.2bn Diesel Emissions Charge

Olympic Ban Remains For Russia Athletes

Brexit Causes ‘Dramatic Drop In UK Economy’

Gunman In Munich Kills 9, Then Himself, The Police Say


Longest Post-War Recession Spawns ‘Lost Generation’ In Alberta As Energy Expertise Flees Province

Ontario First Nations Threaten To Disband Police Service Over Funding Issues

7 Teenage Deaths, But No Answers For Aboriginal Canadians


Videos Show Louisiana Gunman’s Anger

Sparkling and Blighted, Convention Cities Spotlight Ignored Urban Issues

Federal Court Rules Texas’ ID Law Violates Voting Rights Act


Brazil Arrests 10 In Terror Plot As Olympics Near, Officials Say

Mexican Journalist Who Exposed Scandal Says Lawsuit Is Meant As A Warning

Byron Lima Oliva, Bishop’s Killer, Dies In Attack At Guatemala Prison

Memo From Brazil: Leader’s Poems Grip Brazilians, But Not In A ‘Fiery Flames’ Way

Salvadoran Court Overturns Wartime Amnesty, Paving Way For Prosecutions


Australia’s Vast Kelp Forests Devastated By Marine Heatwave, Study Reveals

Australians Not Moving Into Olympic Village Due To ‘Blocked Toilets, Exposed Wiring’

Push For New Laws To Detain ‘Serious Risk’ Terrorists Indefinitely



How Are The Uk’s Butterflies And Birdlife Coping With Our Unpredictable Summer Weather?

Global Temperatures Are On Course For Another Record This Year

Fighting Obama’s Climate Plan, But Quietly Preparing To Comply

Climate change is making farm work more dangerous than it already is

The World Is Poised To Take Strongest Action This Year Against Climate Change

UN: Shorter Working Hours May Be Needed To Save Environment


German Train Axe Attacker ‘Had Is Flag’

Video: ‘You Killed My Sister, You’re Not A Muslim’

‘Islamist’ Gunman Caught After Deadly Shootings In Kazakhstan

Video: At The Gates Of ISIS Stronghold In Syria

Munich Killer Was Troubled, But Had No Terrorist Ties, Germany Says


Migrants And Smugglers Won’t Be Stopped By Donald Trump’s Wall, Ranchers Say


Thousands Of Turkish Police Suspended

Turkish Shares Slide 5.2% After Coup

Erdogan Says He Escaped Death On Night Of Failed Turkish Coup By ‘10, 15 Minutes’ After Plotters Stormed Resort Town

Turkey Bans Academics From Going Abroad




Hi Mishka:

This time I’d like to put attention to blockchain ‘public ledger’ technology that started to come to use in 2015. That is claimed to be a change of paradigm for global digital data storage. To put it simply, all that can be written on paper can be written on blockchain, with only difference being that-in blockchain, it is simply impossible to forge or post fraudulent entries.

All financial information, from credits, transfers, property rights, etc. will be available so in the future, there will be no need for an army of middlemen like notaries and lawyers.  That is also a way to defeat bureaucratic obstacles and government corruption.

Companies will become transparent as they make financial data open for a public and via blockchain technology they simply will not be able to deceive or defraud because what they claim can be verified by other sources whose databases  also include them.  That may also eliminate the need for an audit of the books.

Leading banks and other commercial enterprises already are interested in this technology as it saves recourses to check financial data.  JP Morgan is one who urges its asset managers to adopt blockchain technology.  IBM launches blockchain cloud service on high security server

A recent article in the Irish Times said that blockchain public ledger technology has the potential to be a global game changer not just for crypto-currencies but for information storage and sharing among all industries to whom reliable records are important.

That’s it for this week, Mishka.  Stay safe, my cousin.

Olya Bereza, European Editor


Where has one of North America’s foremost kayaking photojournalists and writers been lately and who or what has he been shooting?  Hawaii:  What Can I Say?


By the Sea Where the Sirens Called, an Italian Town Beckons Tourists With Art

10 Things To Do In And Around Seattle


I like that this is happening where I live.  New University of Washington Program Aims For Better Outcomes For Native American Students

Good for them!  ‘Whale-Harming Sonar’ Broke Marine Laws

Good for these guys.  Wal-Mart, America’s Largest Grocer, Is Now Selling Ugly Fruit


I sincerely hope this shames a nation.  India Gang Rape Victim Assaulted Again

What in the bloody world were THEY THINKING?  ‘Dinner Won’t Cut It’: Passengers Furious After Air Transat Pilots Held For Suspected Drinking Before Flight

This is not good but we can change it.  It Takes Way Too Long To Build New Housing In Expensive Cities


Remember Godzilla.  I hope this little dude doesn’t wake it up.  An underwater drone to explore the deep

Maybe it’s just the way my mind works but this reminds me of one of those Grade Zed 1950s science fiction movies,  Updated Brain Map Identifies Nearly 100 New Regions

Sorry, I’m still not buying into this technology.  Testing Sites For Self-Driving Cars Become A Priority


An Uncharted Underground World

Uncle Sam Wants You – Or At Least Your Genetic And Lifestyle Information

Healthy Forests Need Birds And Bees


An Umbrella To Explore Deep Space

Farewell, Rosetta Comet Mission

Total Eclipse Of Sun: August 21, 2017


Artificial Intelligence Swarms Silicon Valley On Wings And Wheels

Musk Reveals New Tesla ‘Masterplan’

New Glass Helps Prevent Phone Smashes


Electric Car Sales Up Despite Low Gas Prices  

BP Shells Out $61.2 Billion For 2010 Gulf Oil Spill  

Future Of Natural Gas Hinges On Stanching Methane Leaks  

Feds, Refineries Reach $425M Deal To Clean Up Air Throughout West  

US, Enbridge Reach $177 Million Oil Spill Settlement  

The Feds’ new plan to power low-income homes with solar installations

Just how green is car sharing?  


Mosquitoes Love Me! ~ See What Attracts Mosquitoes To Certain Kinds Of People, And How You Can Avoid Becoming Their Next Target.

Got The Munchies? 

18 Helpful Remedies To Relieve Headache Pain & Tension

I.V.F. Does Not Raise Breast Cancer Risk, Study Shows

Sexually Transmitted Diseases ~ Do You Really Know All You Need To Know To Be Safe?


Ten Reasons To Get Out And Enjoy The Great Outdoors

How To Build Safer Cities For Lgbtq Residents

Mom Reveals The Scary Cause Of Their Teen Daughter’s Shocking Death 


Children and love

To subscribe and experience Thoughts in their original, please contact Ame at


Sneaky Peek: Flight Of The Conchords Watch Forest-Dwelling Penguins

Toys that capture mid-century cool

A Field Of 50,000 Illuminated Flowers









 KIKORIKKI ~ a truly fun way to experience science



   testament kindle cover A superpower 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 who spring to life even as Testament herself leaps the waves.  For a $4.00 Kindle Book adventure you will remember for a lifetime, please go here.


Advertising Copy ~ Classified and Display

Comedy ~ jokes, monologues

Ghost writing


Editing ~ General and International

“Americanization” of International Websites

Online English Tutoring

Special Projects

Northstar Media Services



NOW ACCEPTING ADVERTISING ~ Small international news and general interest online magazine accepting classified ads of a maximum of 50 words for the introductory four-edition price of $5.00 US. The Northstar Journal, Email


Yep, the start of its journey.  Photo © 2016 Merritt Scott Miller

Yep, the start of its journey. Photo © 2016 Merritt Scott Miller

This is really cool.  7 Ways to Find Things to Do in Nature Near You (U.S. Edition)

Don’t read this too close to bed time.  Deep-Sea Animals Are Humming, and Nobody Is Sure Why

This from the nation which also gave us Godzilla.  Kraken Spotted Underwater In Japanese Harbor


Organisms Might Be Quantum Machines

Why Do Islands Give Rise To Such Unusual Creatures?

The Greatest Traveler In The World


The Nation That Hates To Be Late

Think A Spider Web In The Garage Is Bad? Try Having One On Your Whole Town!

The Darth Vader? Nine Beetles Named After Celebrities



Amnesty International, EarthSkyNews, Ecofinder-Kenya, GritTV With Laura Flaunders, Help End World Hunger & Poverty | Heifer International® | Heifer.Org, Mother Nature Network, Nature Conservancy in Washington, National Wildlife Federation, No Camels – Weekly Israeli Innovation News, Ocean Conservancy, Outside Magazine, The Rainforest Site, SeaDoc Society: People & Science Healing The Sea, Showcase Magazine:  Today’s Media For Artful Living, Sierra Club, Sightline Institute, The Sun Magazine, Wildlife Conservation Society, Wildlife Extra Magazine, World Wildlife Fund, Writing For Peace, YES magazine


Rusty Miller – Editor

Olya Bereza – European Editor

Dennis Steussy – Associate Editor

Meade Fischer – Contributing Editor

Shannon Patricia Goddard (1962 – 2001) – Editor Emeritus

We are a reader-supported international news, commentary and general interest Internet weekly magazine reaching readers in 22 countries.  They range in age from 12 – 93 and cross all demographics. If you like what you read and would like to contribute to the next edition, please go here.  International currencies accepted. For more information and to receive us in your email if you currently view us on our website, contact us 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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