September 2015

Stop the War !

Image: Tima Kurdi calls for an end to the war while speaking to reporters. Via CTV News.

A cry of sanity in a hurricane of emotion

Mulcair sounds call to end Middle East madness

By Carl Dow
Editor and Publisher
True North Perspective
True North Humanist Perspective

On Thursday 03 September, in the face of a rush of journalists anxious to play the emotional angle, urging her on about what should be done about the plight of refugees, Tima Kurdi looked directly into the camera and said more than once through bitter tears, "Stop the war. They know how to do it, but they won't."

Tima Kurdi, the aunt of Alan Kurdi, the three-year-old Syrian boy whose lifeless body washed up on a Turkish beach, said her brother's family had been forced to flee the civil war in Syria, paying smugglers for a dangerous and fatal boat trip.

"They didn't deserve to die, they didn't," said Tima Kurdi, the father's sister, who lives in Coquitlam, B.C. She was speaking of her nephew Alan, who drowned along with his brother, Galib, 5, and their mother, Rehamin, in the tragic attempted crossing of the Aegean Sea from Turkey to Greece. Their deaths drew worldwide attention to the Syrian war.

To his eternal discredit, Prime Minister Stephen Harper responded to journalist questions with an appropriate choke, then went on, in effect, to dismiss the tragedy as incidental because there are millions of war refugees in the Middle East. He said he had visited two refugee camps populated by tens of thousands.

Then, with total disregard of recent historical events, Harper blamed the death and destruction on the IS (ISIS). Harper said that is why it is necessary for Canada to continue in the U.S. led bombing in Syria and Iraq. It's difficult to know if Harper has the disturbed mind of a delusional pathological liar, or if he is simply dangerously uninformed

In stark contrast, demonstrating the clearest thinking of any leading Canadian politician in the immediate wake of the tragedy, New Democratic Party leader, Thomas Mulcair, to his eternal credit, said there is no military role for the Canadian Forces in the conflict in Syria and Iraq. (More)

Up to 27 Iraqi civilians may have been killed

in Canadian airstrike, Pentagon document reveals

Image: The Department of National Defence acknowledged last week that an investigation looked into allegations that a Canadian airstrike had killed civilians in northwestern Iraq in January of this year. (Canadian Forces Combat Camera)
Canadian military claims allegation was ‘non-credible'
By Timothy Sawa, Lynette Fortune and Ghalia Bdiwe
CBC News

03 September 2015 — An internal Pentagon document obtained by CBC's the fifth estate raises questions about the quality of the investigation conducted by coalition forces into an allegation that as many as 27 civilians were killed in Iraq by a Canadian airstrike.

The Department of National Defence acknowledged last week that an investigation looked into allegations that a Canadian airstrike had killed civilians in northwestern Iraq in January of this year. It was part of an important battle for a key highway near Mosul. (More)

Combination of strength and kind good humour is revealed

in artist Mercure's 25th solo show of watercolours and acrylics

Image: Detail of the artist at work, painting barn and horse, 2011. Provided by Genevieve Hone.
'Artisan' Julien Mercure reveals the secrets of his 'trade' in an interview with 10-year-old Sophie

Granny Witch, writing today as Geneviève Hone, welcomes True North Perspective readers to an exhibition of watercolours and acrylics by her favorite artist, Julien Mercure. But first, please read this story!

By Geneviève Hone

Hone, small image.

Image: Detail of 2011 self-portrait by Julien Mercure. Image provided by Genevieve Hone.1 September 2015 — A friend and neighbor gives me a call: “Sophie is attending a day camp for budding artists. They’ve visited galleries and museums, but now she needs to interview a living artist as a special project. Would Julien consent to be that artist? She’s already made up a list of questions.”

Sophie, ten years old, describes herself as an artist. Indeed she has been drawing and painting since she was two. Her first efforts (markers on wallpaper) were, alas, erased from the dining room wall by her parents who quickly provided her with pencils, crayons, finger paint, a large coverall, and a desk all her own. Sophie never looked back. (More)

The Old Man's Last Sauna
by Carl Dow
'Life is scary, frustrating and sometimes funny. All of these themes are explored in Carl Dow’s collection of short stories, told with the pristine elegance that we haven’t seen since the likes of Stephen Leacock or even Pierre Berton.'
— Award-winning author Emily-Jane Hills Orford
Image: Link to BumblePuppy Press Amazon store

Click here for True North Humanist Perspective

A Jew reports from Israel

On the Side of the Road is on the road in Ireland, UK


Why Russia shut down

U.S. National Endowment for Democracy


'The Old Jew' Bernie Sanders faces the challenge

of defending Muslims from race hatred and violence


‘Beijing military parade is a defensive move

in response to U.S. policy of encirclement of China’


The closer you get to where bullets fly in the Donbass

the more the Ukrainians are inclined to a pact of peace


'Washington is infected with an anti-Russia virus

and lives in a dream world divorced from reality'


TrueNorth Humanist Perspective

Stephen Harper's covert evangelism

Image: Detail of photo of Prime Minister Stephen Harper tours the Church of the Nativity in the West Bank during his visit to Israel in January 2014.

How an apocalyptic Christianity guides his policies and campaigning

By Andrew Nikiforuk

14 September 2015 — Prime Minister Stephen Harper's love-in with Israel's right-wing government provides more insight on the influence of his religious views on public policy - and the importance he places on pleasing evangelical Christian voters.

Most Canadians still don't even know that Harper has been a long-time member of the Christian and Missionary Alliance, an evangelical church established by a Canadian nearly 100 years ago. It has a wide following in Alberta.

Harper's church believes that Jesus Christ will return to Earth in an apocalypse that is "imminent." It does not support abortion and homosexuality and believes that those who aren't born-again are "lost." (More)

True North Perspective publishes in
the best traditions of Canadian journalism
If you think it's too radical, please rea
Wisdom is a result of a happy marriage between intelligence and experience.
© Carl Dow, Editor and Publisher, True North Perspective.
True North Perspective
Vol. 10, No. 7 (358)
September 2015

Editor's Notes

A few words on hypocrisy

Image: True North Perspective Editor and Publisher Carl Dow. Photo by the Phantom Phographer.

Donald Trump calls to mind Italian dictator Mussolini, so while Trump's blustering manner prompts some amusement in an unfortunate era when too many American politicians ooze hypocrisy whenever they speak, his seeming candor has been welcomed by millions of weary voters.

Trump really hit the proverbial nail on the  head when he justly scorned Senator John McCain as a war hero. McCain bombed schools and hospitals in North Vietnam. He was shot down bombing a light bulb factory and then spent about six years as a prisoner of war.

"I don't see how that makes him a war hero," said Trump.

Still speaking of hypocrisy we turn to Madonna. Please see below a story about Madonna and homosexuals. But first be advised that successful journalists learn a lot of tricks to ply their trade. (More)

Op Ed

Margaret Atwood aims the geezer vote

at Stephen Harper's 19 October elections

By Margaret Atwood
The National Post

Image: Photo of man dropping ballot in ballot box. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young04 September 2015 — Despite our differences, us geezers have beady eyes. We fix those beady eyes on politicians, every single one of which is — to us — a kid in short pants. The Canadian Press/Chris Young.

You’ve heard what they call us, we folks over 65. “The geezer vote.”

Yes, we golden oldies do vote, bless our knobbly knees. I remember my mother (born 1909) describing her excitement the first time she voted; she continued to vote as long as she could see. My spouse’s grandfather, who voted for John A. Macdonald, got himself carried to the polls in a chair when he was 99 to vote for John Diefenbaker. That’s dedication! (More)

The Binkley Report

Alex Binkley is a foremost political and economic analyst, whose website is He also recently published his first novel, Humanity's Saving Grace.

Harper's secrecy leaves TPP with a credibility gap

With ominous signs for Canada's freedom to trade

By Alex Binkley
True North Perspective

Image: Detail of Wikileaks' Trans-Pacific-Partnership logo.As details dribble out about the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal that foundered in Maui in early August, the more the Harper government’s fetish for secrecy is apt to come back to haunt it.

So far the government has been fortunate that the deal has not attracted any public attention in the October 19 election campaign other than NDP trade critic Don Davies’ sharp criticism of the tactic of keeping Canadians in the dark about what’s in the 29 chapters of the deal. The government gets away with vague promises of increased access to a market of 800 million and 40% of the world trade while being silent on the price tag for Canada. (More)


Northwest Passage holds little attraction for shipping lines

Image: Popular Northwest Passage routes via Wikipedia. Based on a NASA image at
By Alex Binkley
True North Perspective

Image: Cover of Humanity's Saving Grace, a novel by Alex Binkley. Click to purchase at Amazon.caWhile Russia is actively promoting Arctic shipping between Europe and Asia via its Northern Sea Route, the Northwest Passage through Canadian waters gets the cold shoulder from shipowners.

“The conditions aren’t there for what’s required for long-term planning of a voyage,” says Tim Keane, Senior Manager of Arctic Operations with FedNav of Montreal. The unpredictability of ice along the route, much higher insurance costs and incomplete charting of the region are among the factors that deter shipping lines from sailing the NWP.

Last year, FedNav’s Nunavik bulled its way through the passage to deliver a cargo to China. Two years before the Nordic Orion completed a voyage from Alaska to Europe. (More)

From the Desk of Dennis Carr, Sustainable Development Editor


Offering tobacco and bottled water for a sea of oil

Chevron gets angry boot from indigenous territory

By Sven Eberlein
Daily Kos
Image: Detail of map of proposed pipelines through Unist’ot’en lands in Alberta and British Columbia, via Unist’ot’en.25 August 2015 — No, this is not the 17th century: Chevron engineers, looking to frack billions of cubic feet of gas from indigenous Unist’ot’en territory in British Columbia, did indeed try to get past the tribe's roadblock a few weeks ago.
Trying to keep out oil and gas pipelines from deep within their unceded traditional territories, the Unist’ot’en's concerns about the wholesale destruction of their sacred lands were met with generous offerings of bottled water and industrial tobacco: But hey, who would care about clean river water when you can just drink water from bottles made with the oil that's going to be sucked out of your ground? Here, have a Camel! See story and video HERE.

The Canadian War on Science

A long, unexaggerated, devastating chronological indictment
By James O'Grady
UnPublished Ottawa

Image: Detail of photo of person holding placard reading "Stand up for science!" C/o BoomerWarrior.org20 May 2013 — This is a brief chronology of the current Conservative Canadian government’s long campaign to undermine evidence-based scientific, environmental and technical decision-making.

It is a government that is beholden to big business, particularly big oil, and that makes every attempt to shape public policy to that end. It is a government that fundamentally doesn’t believe in science. It is a government that is more interested in keeping its corporate masters happy than in protecting the environment. (More)

Bits and Bites of Everyday Life

Cherish democracy and honour it by voting

By Alberte Villeneuve-Sinclair
True North Perspective

Alberte Villeneuve-Sinclair is the author of The Neglected Garden and two French novels. Visit her website to learn more

Image: Detail of photo of Alberte Villeuneuve-Sinclair“Democracy must be built through open societies that share information. When there is information, there is enlightenment. When there is debate, there are solutions. When there is no sharing of power, no rule of law, no accountability, there is abuse, corruption, subjugation and indignation.” — Atifete Jahjaga

Image: Detail of cartoon by Guy Badeux, from Le Droit. Used by permission.I recently visited The Greeks exhibition at the Museum of Civilizations (Sorry, I hate the new name). The last section I viewed was about the birth of democracy in ancient Greece. As I crossed the Alexandra Bridge and glanced at Parliament Hill, “Democracy” stuck to my mind and hasn’t left since. Aristotle, the philosopher and scientist of ancient Greece, believed that liberty and equality is “best attained when all persons alike share in government to the utmost.”
As a Canadian citizen, I feel that right is ignored. This government does as it pleases, without consulting the electorate. (More)
Spirit Quest

Friendly fascist – Harper more than a pain in the butt

By The Rev. Dr. Hanns F. Skoutajan
True North Perspective

Image: Detail of photo of Steven Harper leaving the Netherlands on August 6, 2015, by THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick.September 2015 — “Sciatica” is a pain in the butt, one with which I have some familiarity. The pain originates at the “sciatic notch” which is located near the hip joint of the human anatomy. From there it fans down the leg all the way to the foot and makes life miserable along the way.

The condition does not seem to be related to age nor is there any known reason for it. It is treated more or less successfully by physiotherapy, chiropractic and acupuncture. Mostly the pain is suppressed by medications such as tylenol and other similar medications that suppress pain with the hope that the source will go away on its own, sometimes, unfortunately, to return.

This pain in the butt has some political affinity especially in times of electioneering when the citizenry is badgered endlessly for funds and votes. The party with the most funds, it is believed, has the best chance of winning most votes, we are told. (More)

'Thanks for giving me a great life'

These were the last words of Janis Annabella Ray to her husband, Randy Ray, as cancer took her 10 July 2015.

'Together forever, my love'

Image: Photo of Randy Ran and Janis Ray, taken in St. Lucia, 2015.
Randy Ray and Janis Annabella Ray in St. Lucia, January 2015. Photo provided by Randy Ray.

These were the last words of Randy Ray on 18 July at Our Lady of the Visitation Church as he concluded his summary of his life with Janis since they became high school sweethearts.
(Editor'sNote: I had planned to write in celebration of the Janis I had come to know but after reading the below, written by Randy Ray who, among other achievements is a contributing editor to True North Perspective, I concluded that the best one to talk about Janis was her long-time dancing partner, Randy. So Randy has the floor. — Carl Dow.)


Let me begin by thanking everyone for coming today to celebrate and pay tribute to Janis’s life.  Janis, I know, would be very pleased with the turnout.  I can say the same on behalf of our family, sons Chris, Andrew and Marcus, daughter-in-law, Elena, and Janis’s brothers Gary and Ken and sister-in-law, Madeleine.

Your presence means a lot to our family.

When delivering an address such as this, it is crucial in my view, that the life of the person being remembered be put into context.  I’ll do that by giving a brief history of Janis, followed by some deeper insight into what she was all about, and to close, I’ll say a few words about what my family and others have learned since she became sick in February 2014. (More)

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True North Perspective Public Service Notice

Voter ID rules have changed. You may have voted in federal elections before, but may not be able to do so in October. Make sure you are properly registered to vote.

Click below to visit Elections Canada's Online Voter Registration Service to confirm you have not lost your right to vote or, for first-time voters, to register!

Image: Banner linking to Elections Canada voter registration service.


Freed from constraints,
Elections Canada set to launch its own campaigns

Image: Detail of photo of Elections Canada 'Ordinary Poll Bag' with election worker in background. FRED CHARTRAND / THE CANADIAN PRESS
By Jason Fekete
Ottawa Citizen
13 September 2015 — After almost having its chief electoral officer “muzzled,” Elections Canada is launching a new advertising campaign this week, and will target youth, seniors and aboriginals, in a pilot project to help Canadians cast ballots Oct. 19.
Chief Electoral Officer Marc Mayrand was expected Monday to lay out what voters need to know to register and vote. The agency will also launch the first phase of its ad campaign.
The Conservatives have been criticized for changes to Canada’s election laws that some say will make it more difficult for students, seniors and indigenous people to vote – and also make it tougher for Elections Canada to communicate with Canadians. (More)

From the desk of Isabella Tandutella, Contributing Editor, Mexico City

‘El Chapo’ may be in Costa Rica, son accidentally reveals

Image: Detail of photo showing a police vehicle with a poster of drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman © Henry Romero / Reuters.

Some 77 per cent of Mexicans believe government complicit in escape

05 September 2015 — Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman may be in a hideout in Costa Rica following his daring escape from Mexico’s most secure prison. The drug lord’s son accidentally disclosed the alleged location on Twitter.
Jesus Alfredo Guzman Salazar, 29, has been regularly posting on social networks about his father, but this time he seems to have forgotten to remove the location tag.
The picture is from a restaurant in Costa Rica, and the local authorities are now checking if the notorious drug lord fled to the country.
"August here, you already know with whom," the caption reads. (More)

Mexico’s anti-poverty programs are losing the battle

Image: A mother eats lunch with her children in a rural Mexican school, as part of one of the programmes that fall under the umbrella of the Crusade Against Hunger. Credit: Government of Mexico.

By Emilio Godoy
Inter Press Service
5 August 2015, MEXICO CITY — While most of Latin America has been reducing poverty, Mexico is moving in the other direction: new official figures reflect an increase in the number of poor in the last two years, despite the billions of dollars channeled into a broad range of programmes aimed at combating the problem.
The negative impact of the 2014 fiscal reform, poorly-designed and mismanaged public policies, sluggish economic growth, and family incomes that have been frozen are all factors underlying the rise in the number of people living in poverty in the region’s second-most populous country, according to experts consulted by IPS. (More)

Thousands march demanding answers

over students’ kidnapping in Mexico

 27 August  2015

RT — Thousands took to the streets of Mexico City on Wednesday to commemorate 43 students from a college in Ayotzinapa, as 11 months has passed since their disappearance. The marchers demanded that authorities provide them with an explanation for the tragedy and details concerning the ongoing investigation. Many in the crowd held up pictures of the missing young people and chanted anti-government slogans. Forty-three students from Ayotzinapa disappeared on 26 September 2014 after being detained by police. A series of protests have been held since then, but the circumstances surrounding the students’ deaths are still unknown.


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From the Desk of Darren Jerome

A continuing update on the war against WikiLeaks transparency

Please be advised that the below is not just the same old thing. By clicking on it you'll find the petition in support of Julian Assange and discover fascinating on-going reports and videos related to one of the most important events in modern history, and the desperate attempts to put a lid on information that everyone should know. Don't miss this special opportunity to stay informed.

From the Desk of Darren Jerome, Contributing Editor

Federal scientist put on leave over Harperman protest song

Environment Canada staffer Tony Turner wrote and performed anti-Tory song

By Haydn Watters
CBC News
28 August 2015 — A scientist with Environment Canada has been put on administrative leave with pay pending an investigation for creating a politically charged protest song about ousting Conservative Leader Stephen Harper.

Tony Turner, a physical scientist at Environment Canada and longtime singer-songwriter in Ottawa's folk music scene, wrote the controversial tune Harperman. Turner was sent home in mid-August, according to his union, over concerns that his song breached Environment Canada's value and ethics code.

The song touches on the Duffy trial, Harper's spat with Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin and includes highly political lyrics like "Who muzzles the poor scientist?" and "Won't buy into climate change until it's sold on the stock exchange." Its chorus ends with the blunt line "Harperman, it's time for you to go."

Turner has been a public servant for nearly 20 years and was planning to retire in roughly one month. "[Environment Canada] is alleging … [Turner] has violated the departmental code of values and ethics in that the writing and performing of this song somehow impeded his ability to impartially study migratory birds," she said.

 (Much more here)

There can be no life without laughter

From the Desk of Nick Aplin, Contributing Editor

People in Crimewatch reconstructions

‘just actors’, program makers confirm

Image: Still from 'CrimeWatch' television programme.The BBC today issued a statement emphasising that the people shown apparently committing crimes in the “reconstructions” segment of its popular Crimewatch series are just actors, performing a prearranged series of words and actions they have committed to memory.
This follows reports that a number of people, whom the producers describe as ‘unbelievable f*ckwits’, regularly call in identifying the actors, sometimes even citing other programmes they have appeared in to help the authorities track them down. (More)

Charities launch “Save the Charities” charity

A new charity has been launched “to save British charities and especially the charity Chief Executives from extinction,” said an STC spokesman today. Many charities have come under increasing pressure to “ask nicely” for donations instead of targetting known dementia sufferers and holding them upside down by their ankles while fleecing their bank accounts. (More)

Classic Quiz

By Mark Kearney and Randy Ray

Mark Kearney of London, Ont. and Randy Ray of Ottawa are the authors of nine books about Canada, with best-seller sales of more than 50,000. Their Web site is:

Big Book of Canadian Trivia cover


1. When did the Toronto Blue Jays last win the World Series?
a) 1991 b) 1992  c) 1993  d) 1994
2. True or false. ? True or false.  Muskoxen are the only animals that don’t seek shelter during Arctic blizzards.
3. This province has the world’s largest population of red-sided garter snakes.  Is it

a) Ontario   b) Manitoba  c)  New Brunswick  d) Quebec

Randy Ray, publicist / speaker agent / author

 (613) 425-3873 - (613) 816-3873 (c)

O Canada! Getting to know you!

This is one of a series on the heartbeat of Canada

Isaac Brock and the Siege of Fort Detroit

Image: Painting depicting the surrender of Detroit to General Isaac Brock.


During the War of 1812, British General Isaac Brock and the Shawnee chief Tecumseh bluffed their way into capturing Detroit without a fight.

The ruse began in August 1812, when Brock besieged American General William Hull’s 2,000-strong army at Fort Detroit. Brock’s inferior force included just 300 regulars, 400 Canadian militiamen and 600 Indians, but he had cleverness on his side.

Knowing that Hull believed the Indians to be ruthless barbarians, Brock allowed Hull to intercept a false letter indicating the British had 5,000 natives at their disposal. He then wrote another letter to Hull in which he cautioned that the Indian war party was so large that he feared he would be unable to control its bloodlust once the battle began.

While Hull was mulling this over, Tecumseh marched the same group of whooping Indians past the fort multiple times to give the appearance of larger numbers. Brock also clothed his Canadian militiamen in discarded British uniforms to make the Americans think they were up against veterans. Faced with this well-acted bit of battlefield theater, Hull lost his nerve and surrendered.

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-- PBS journalist Bill Moyers.
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In her memoir Open Heart, Open Mind,

the renowned sports champion Clara Hughes

reveals the fears under which she laboured

even as she scored victory after victory

winning medals in multiple summer and

winter Olympic Games

Click HERE for moving video with CBC's Adrien Arsenault

Media Watch
From the Desk of Isabella Tandutella, Editor, Mexico City

More than 100 Journalists Killed in Mexico in 15 Years

Mexico is the second most dangerous country to be a journalist — even more so than Syria, which has experienced 79 journalist deaths. Iraq remains in first place, with about 179 journalists killed since 1992.

By teleSur

Image: Protests hold up pictures of Ruben Espinosa during a protest against his murder at the Angel of Independence monument in Mexico City, Mexico Aug. 2, 2015. | Photo: Reuters  This content was originally published by teleSUR at the following address: "".03 August 2015 — In the wake of the shocking homicide of photojournalist Ruben Espinosa, figures released in February by Mexico's attorney general's office are worth revisiting.

Ruben Espinosa is one of more than 100 journalists killed in Mexico in the last 15 years, according to official figures by the attorney general’s office, which show 25 more are missing.

The attorney general confirmed in February that 103 journalists had died since 2000, with the northern states of Chihuahua and Veracruz topping the list as the most deadly, with 16 journalist deaths each. (More)


Media rush helped Amanda Knox escape murder rap

High Court says shoddy police work led to her acquittal

Image: Detail of photo of Amanda Knox, found not guilty of murder by an Italian court.

By Barbie Latza Nadeau
The Daily Beast

07 September 2015 — Italy's high court pointed to bungled work by investigators and courts to explain its ultimate acquittal of Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito.After more than five months and two deadline extensions, Italy’s highest court on Monday finally explained why it ruled to throw out the convictions of Seattle native Amanda Knox and her former Italian boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito, for the 2007 murder of Meredith Kercher. (More)

Dutch Safety Board asks for RT’s assistance in MH17 probe
Image: Photo of MH17 crash site, via RT Twitter.


03 August 2015 — The Dutch agency heading the international probe into Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash in eastern Ukraine has contacted RT over the footage used in our recent documentary on the tragedy. RT’s documentary discovered fragments of the plane still in Donetsk.

The RT Documentary film, titled “MH17: A year without truth,” showed fragments of the crashed Boeing and pieces of luggage still scattered in the area at the time of filming. The RTD crew collected the parts of the plane’s exterior they spotted, bringing them to the administration of the nearby town of Petropavlovsk. (More)

Why has Putin spared Ekho Moskvy?

Four million daily listeners; three million monthly website viewers

Image: Detail of cartoon from The Moscow Times.
By Robert Orttung, Sufian Zhemukhov
The Moscow Times

09 August 2015 — Why hasn't President Vladimir Putin shut down Ekho Moskvy, often described as the "last bastion of free media in Russia?" And more importantly, will he do it?

The riddle of Ekho Moskvy is all the more interesting because the Kremlin has recently moved against other independent media. Last year, for example, it blocked access in Russia to four prominent websites: Yezhednevny Zhurnal (,,, and Alexei Navalny's blog. These sites were completely oppositional, never provided a platform for pro-Kremlin content and therefore were useless to the authorities.

In contrast, the Kremlin hopes to use Ekho Moskvy for its own purposes. (More)

New face of Russian foreign policy

First woman appointed Foreign Ministry info director

Image: Photo of Maria Zakharova, via RT.10 August 2015 — Russia’s Foreign Ministry appointed a new director for its Information and Press department on Monday. Maria Zakharova, the first woman to become the ministry’s public voice, spoke to RT about how her department will convey Moscow’s positions to the world.
“We will try to combine all ways of bringing information about Russia’s foreign policy. We will use – absolutely for sure – traditional ways, like interviews, press conferences, briefings, statements, official comments. And, of course, we will go on with developing social networking and we will be very active in internet, as well,” Zakharova told RT. “I think that this combination of traditional ways and some innovation is the most useful.”. (More)

While the 'Nazis' in Kiev want her arrest

Putin makes her a Crimea major general

Image: Screenshot of Criman Major General Natalia Poklonskaya, via RT.
Natalia Poklonskaya, 35, Crimea’s chief prosecutor, who came to prominence during the peninsula’s controversial partition from Ukraine, has been promoted. She is now a major general equivalent.

The promotion is one of 80 ordered in June by Russian President Vladimir Putin among officers of the military, the police, the prosecution, the investigative committee, customs and other law enforcement agencies. (More)

Canadian will pay top price of $3,000


Addicted to porn? That's unlikely, according to researchers


The joke is over for coward Donald Trump

Image: Screenshot of Donald Trump at rally, via AlterNet.

He's a liar and a criminal who works well with criminals

He's a racist and a union buster who doesn't pay his bills

By Amy Goodman and Juan Gonzalez
Democracy Now! via

15 August 2015 — On Democracy Now!, Pulitzer Prize winning journalist David Cay Johnston talks about Donald Trump, a subject whom Johnston has previously written about for almost the last 30 years.  His latest story about The Donald for National Memo is titled 21 Questions for Donald Trump.

"Donald Trump has been found in the past repeatedly to have not paid people he owed money to," Johnston told Juan Gonzalez and Amy Goodman. "It is a standard business practice of his. He has let people think that he fixed Wollman Rink in Central Park for free. He was paid $10 million, but some of his contractors were never paid, because he told them this was a public service project."

For an interview with Johnston, followed by a transcript, click HERE.

And yet ...

Trump & Sanders:

Front-runners reveal rot at heart of American democracy

Image: Photo-montage of Bernie Sanders, left, and Donald Trump, right.

By Markus Feldenkirchen
Spiegel Online International

10 September 2015 — The two candidates currently attracting the most attention in the American presidential primaries seem to be polar opposites. First, there's self-declared socialist Bernie Sanders, who can pack entire arenas with as many as 20,000 supporters. And then there's a man who claims to possess $10 billion, Donald Trump, who is leading in the broad field of Republicans. The two do, however, have one thing in common: They reject the US campaign finance system. One out of conviction; the other because he has the resources to finance his own campaign.

One, Bernie Sanders, takes pride in stating that he doesn't want rich people's money. Some 400,000 largely middle class Americans have contributed to his campaign so far, donating $31.20 on average. The other, Donald Trump, proudly announced recently that he had rejected a $5 million donation from a hedge fund manager. And that he is prepared to pump $1 billion of his own wealth into the campaign. One of Trump's most popular arguments so far is that his rival Jeb Bush has managed to raise over $150 million. "Jeb Bush is a puppet to his donors," Trump says disparagingly. Sooner or later, he argues, they will call in their favors. "I don't owe anyone any favors." It's a message that is proving popular with potential voters. But is it really any more democratic that a billionaire can buy his own election instead of allowing himself to be bought by others? (More)

"But when the powerful lose power, when what gave them power seems not to matter – money, position, education, logic – they are left sputtering. To them, it is simply beyond belief that Mr. Trump is a contender to be the Republican presidential candidate. So they trash him – and the more they trash him, the more they are saying that those who support him are stupid, and the more even more Americans like him even more."

I am Donald, hear me roar
Despite all, Trump still leads Republican race

By Ken Dryden
The Globe and Mail
14 September 2015 — Donald Trump has them flummoxed. The media, his Republican and Democratic opponents, they don’t know what to do with him. And because they don’t, more and more Americans like him.
In our Internet-fuelled world, where anything you say can be captured and dragged out by anyone, anywhere, any time, he is a perfect target. He has lived his life in public; he has insisted on attention. His record of outrageous doings and misdoings is outrageously lengthy, there to haunt him at every step. Yet to be embarrassed is to be weak, so Mr. Trump rejects embarrassment. He knows you can’t fight every argument with counterargument, every charge with countercharge. You can spin, create doubt, or not give a darn. He chooses the latter. Unhauntable, he is the post-Internet person. (More)

Image: Tom Tomorrow cartoon: Click for original at The Daily Kos.

Show me the money

Madonna’s staggering hypocrisy on gay rights

Image: Detail of photo of Madonna, via RT. © Carlo Allegri / Reuters

One assumes Madonna is aware that homosexuality

is completely legal in Russia and punishable by death in Abu Dhabi

By Bryan MacDonald
Madonna co-owns fitness clubs in Russia. She is also happy to appear in countries where homosexuality is illegal. Her refusal to play concerts in Russia is opportunistic hypocrisy.