December 17, 2017 Vol. 10 No.15
Pacem, Libertatem, Justitiam

INSIDE: The Will Of The People Will Prevail; Happy Holidays From The Northstar Journal gift page; Headline News At A Glance; Happy Holidays From The Northstar Journal; From Olya: Orphanages Are Not The Answer; For Your Consideration; Ways to Help; Our Science Section, Unabridged; Good Examples; Dalai Lama; Bad Examples; Travel; The Green Beat; Health; Home, Family & Lifestyle; Best of the Net; Masha & the Bear; Northstar Classifieds; All Creatures Great & Small; You Guys Think We Make This Stuff Up; About Us

Reader Supported:  All Contributions Appreciated and Accepted Here 

Norman Rockwell’s Freedom of Speech


Hi again, from the shores of the Salish Sea.  Well, it’s undeniably been an action-packed week, has it not, gang?  America’s Federal Communications Commission (FCC) decided to gag Net Neutrality.  While many are contemplating the impacts, where I live, we’re insuring the FCC’s decision won’t affect Washington state, where 200,000 people making a living in this venue of net neutrality.

Our governor and other state leaders are making sure that only net neutral vendors can be licensed and have access to the infrastructure.  Our attorney general has filed suit, just as he did to block several of Trump’s attempts to select who could come here and who could not.  This story from the Spokane Spokesman-Review provides the details.  Washington will keep net neutrality in state if FCC won’t for the nation

And it appears that other states are already doing the same as this story from TIME magazine explains.  What’s Next for Net Neutrality? Lawsuits Against the FCC.  This is another example of the same kind of states vs. the federal government that, some 156 years ago, initiated the bloodiest war in American history and one fought on its own soil.

Could this eventually lead to the balkanization of America?  I think we can look to the Soviet Union for an example of that.  Few people doubted that would happen especially after the failure of Hungary’s revolt in 1956.  But when Poland held free elections and voted Solidarity leader Lech Walensa its president in 1990, thus defying the Kremlin, the beginning of the end of the USSR began.

What seems to often elude leaders of nations like America, Russia and China is that they can enact all the legislation they want.  In the end, the will of the people will prevail, as it will in this case, as well.

Have a great week, gang.  Rusty

Merritt Scott “Rusty” Miller is a journalist, author, editor and photographer who lives in Seattle, Washington.  For comments, please go here.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS FROM THE NORTHSTAR JOURNAL is a page full of mostly free stuff and several unique gifts for under $5.00//4.5 EUROS.  It includes films, television episodes, gadgets and apps to make our work lives easier.  And it also has songs and videos for both Hanukah and Christmas.  So load up on the good stuff and if you have any spare change, drop it in the jar on your way out.  You can even try it now and use your back browser to come back to the rest of the magazine.




Hi Rusty:

Looking through shelves in a bookshop, I stumbled upon a J.K. Rowling book, ” The Tales of Beedle the Bard”.  I was struck by the note in the end of it by The Lumos Fund.  It said that money from the book’s sale will go to support children in crisis families and enable them to stay with their families instead of going to foster care or an institution.

Particularly in bad circumstances, there is nothing so important to a child as “family,” even if it’s not full, but instead, single parent or relatives taking care of them.  Rowling’s Lumos Fund has also literally transformed the orphans care system in Zhytomyr. Read more here :

This really moved me, especially after a recent talk with a lady who had worked for social services in the West Ukraine city of Ivano-Frankivsk.  She explained how difficult it was to provide all the children the care they need.  She also said that even the best of attention cannot replace that of a family member.  This woman also said that she left her job after a case that broke her heart.

In a village she preferred not to name, she found a little girl in a stroller.  No one knew her.  No one knew how she got there. This scared, crying child was not taken into loving arms of family.  She was sent to an orphanage.  That, this woman explained, was just too much suffering for her to take.

So, this woman stated firmly, whenever possible, kids should stay with someone who loves them.  If financial support is necessary, it should be provided.  Same with infrastructures like employment, housing and daycare.  The government has some of these resources but in 2018’s annual budget, 38.5 percent more was dedicated to housing for orphans, rather than to support poor families on whom a child is a significant financial challenge.

I totally agree then, with Ms. Rowling’s assertion that more needs to come from the private sector and from individuals who care about kids.  A dramatic result of what happens when this support is not forthcoming is Ukraine singer Ani Lorac, whose song “Shady Lady,” took second place at Eurovision in 2008.

Ani Lorac is her stage name.  Her real one is Carolina and she grew upin poverty. Her mother separated from her father even before Carolina was born.  Abandoned financially, as well, Carolina’s mom did not have enough money to feed her children so she gave up them up to a boarding school that was actually an orphanage, where they remained through seventh grade.

It is said that one of the things that draws people into the entertainment industry is the need for love from an audience that they did not receive as kids.  That, of course, is not possible.  When the truth of that hits, sometimes life is too much to bear.

Listen to Ani Lorac’s  song, “Smile” and you will understand.


Olya Bereza, who was born in the Soviet Union, now lives in Ukraine and is fluent in English, Russian and Ukrainian.  She is a degreed psychologist with a background in international marketing and personnel management.  For comments on this please go here.


Sandy Hook Mom: I Can’t Go Back In Time, But I Can Try To Change The Future

The Best (And Worst) Holiday Gifts, According To Science

Want To Invest In Bit coin? Here’s What You Need To Know


I Have A Feeling We’ll Be Grateful For This. Sentinel Tracks California Smoke Plume

This Should Leave Us All A Little Speechless.  Hurricane Harvey Rainfall ‘Weighed 127bn Tonnes’

And It’s A Cute One, Too.  The World’s Youngest Island

Our Planet

The Winter Solstice Is Next Week. Here Are 4 Things You Probably Didn’t Know

Rocket Rumbles Give Volcanic Insights

Prehistoric Skye Meteorite Impact Found

Outer Space

Visiting Vehicle Launches, Arrivals And Departures

Earth At Night

President Trump Is Sending NASA Back To The Moon

NASA TV To Broadcast Briefings Before Spacex Dragon Launch – Space Station

From Our Friends At Earth/Sky NewsSolstice Coming Up December 21: Everything You Need To Know

From Our Friends At the NASA Earth ObservatoryIncredible Images Of Our World And Far Beyond


Rooftop Solar Installations On Way To Record Year In Oregon

Seattle Tech Transplants Create Community For People Of Color

Will Humans Ever Pilot Giant Robots?


Another reason why I live here.  Seattle And King County Double Down On Sanctuary City Defiance

We knew this.  Infographic: How giving makes you much happier

This is awesome.  Gujarat’s Women Bikers On A Mission


New York State Wants To Take Guns Away From All Domestic Abusers

Eataly Drops Mario Batali’s Face From Its Products After Sexual Harassment Allegations

A New Mom Turned Her Frustrations Into A Luxury E-Comm Startup

EPA Identifies Two Pacific Northwest Superfund Sites For Expedited Cleanup


Everybody appreciates kindness, but unfortunately our modern education system, with its materialistic goals, doesn’t have much room for inner values. We need to make people more aware of such inner values on the basis of scientific findings, common sense and common experience.


This will be remembered and they will not be forgotten, Mr. Trump.  South Jersey Couple Deported to Mexico After 30 Years in US: In an emotional and religious goodbye Friday morning, the Campos parents said goodbye to their children, ages 24, 22, and 16, as they were forced onto a flight

This is absolutely horrific and I agree with the recommendations of this report. Report Details Gruesome Crimes Against Humanity At North Korean Prisons

When something like this lands in my backyard, I remind myself that being charged with a crime is not being convicted of one.  Still… Washington State GOP Lawmaker Put On Paid Leave At University Pending Sexual Misconduct Investigation

There is absolutely no excuse for this.  And this company is the last one I thought would do this.  But then again, before I started saving for an electric car, I almost bought a Toyota.  HP Laptops Found To Have Hidden Keylogger


These Are The Women Who Have Accused Trump Of Sexual Misconduct

There’s An ‘IRS’ Email Scam Going Around. Here’s How To Spot It

Utah Dog That Bit Girl Wins Reprieve, Won’t Be Put To Death


The Island Where 81 Is Considered Young

Kabul’s Peaceful Garden Refuges

Europe’s Strange Border Anomaly


Stopping Plastic Pollution With The Power Of Bubbles

Head Of Washington State Ferries Has Plans To Electrify The Fleet

5 Most Important Environmental Issues Of 2017

How Chief Seattle Mistakenly Inspired An Environmental Movement

Macron: Trump ‘Will Change His Mind’ On Climate Accord


9 Healthy Foods To Always Have In Your Pantry

Fracking Linked To Negative Health Effects In Infants

‘Man Flu’ Is Real, Scientists Say Men Experience Worse Symptoms

Exposed To Wildfire Smoke? 5 Questions Answered

Huntington’s Breakthrough May Stop Disease


Thieves Are Stealing Money Off Gift Cards. Here’s How To Protect Yourself

40 Easy And Elegant Recipes For The Holidays

7 Gadgets That Should Be In Your Emergency Kit

3 Myths About Your Teen’s Bad Attitude

The World’s First Modern Couple?

The Nordic Approach To Getting Outdoors


Kenny Rogers & Home Free: Children Go Where I Send Thee

National Geographic’s 57 Best Photos Of The Year

Hunting The Shipwrecks Of The Slave Trade

DAILY 10 QUESTION TRIVIA QUIZ:  This one is from Daily Email Trivia and delivered to me in mine.  There is also an opportunity, the site, to take more quizzes on a wide range of subjects and to engage interactively and competitively.


NEXTDOOR is a dynamic non-profit community networking association helping neighborhoods across America become friendlier and better organized.  They offer membership profiles, free classifieds and local social networks, all at no charge.  For more information, contact them at

A Christmas Story for Children. Mysterious disappearance of the Christmas Director at the Know-it-all school to be solved by self-appointed detective Mr. Peter Pointyfinger.. On sale here at the ridiculously low price of $2.99 US

Thought of the Week/Day:  For true inspiration delivered to your email every week, contact Amy at  It will be the nicest thing you’ll do for yourself today.

A kid friendly story about Little Queen Harmony and her best friend, Rocky the Rocket, as they head out to enter Rocky in the World Space Models Championship. A very cute Kindle Book, it is on sale here for just $0.99: 

NORTHSTAR MEDIA SERVICES is my online editing, writing and tutoring  service.  For a full list of my services, visit my website at To contact me directly,  Thanks and I look forward to hearing from you.  Rusty

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.

ADVERTISE WITH US:  10¢ a word  


This is awesome.  Bambi on ice: Deer rescued from frozen lake in Oregon

Absolutely absorbing.  Photos: Marvel At The Diversity Of Western Marine Life

Here’s another chance to die of cute.  This Adorable Bat Loves Bananas More Than Life Itself


This month’s Project FeederWatch eNews is now online.


An Airbus Drew A Giant Christmas Tree Over Germany

Who Invented Hummus?

Pentagon Ran Secret Multi-Million Dollar UFO Programme

ABOUT US: The Northstar Journal reaches strong, intelligent, proactively compassionate readers in 22 countries who are making our world a better place. We are proud to serve them as a resource in that regard. If you would like to help us help them, please go here.  If you would like to sponsor an edition or contribute in some other way, please contact me, Rusty Miller, at Thank you.  See you next week.  RM/OB



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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