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Friday, July 4, 2008 Vol 3 No 26 (140)
"True North is for opinion makers"
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It Was Oil, All Along
(As True North Perspective has said all along)

By Bill Moyers and Michael Winship
t r u t h o u t | Perspective

Oh, no, they told us, Iraq isn't a war about oil. That's cynical and simplistic, they said. It's about terror and al-Qaeda and toppling a dictator and spreading democracy and protecting ourselves from weapons of mass destruction. But one by one, these concocted rationales went up in smoke, fire and ashes. And now the bottom line turns out to be ... the bottom line. It is about oil. — 964 words.

"News is what (certain) people want to keep hidden. Everything else is just publicity."
PBS journalist Bill Moyers.

Your support makes it possible for True North to clear the fog of "publicity" and keep you informed on what's really happening in the world today. Please send your donation to:

Carl Dow, True North, Station E, P.O. Box 4814, Ottawa ON Canada K1S 5H9.

Or quick and easy and perfectly safe, via Pay Pal. No donation is too small.

True North No Gas Fridays
Don't be shy! Just don't buy!

Join True North No Gas Fridays and hit back at Big Oil price gouging. When enough drivers make the point that they're mad as hell and won't take it anymore Governments will act. You can count on it. Protect yourself with True North No Gas Fridays.

All the way to the bank and back                

hahhaha dont go here

Take care, beware, don't go near that thing on Friday . . . theres a gouger lurking, with a very greedy eye on your hard-earned money.

Editor’s Notes

Friday, July 4, 2008

Girls are as competitive as boys – just more subtle
Boys grab and chase while girls exclude and hide

Some years ago I had the opportunity to help out in the capacity of a daycare worker at a primary school. The students were about thirty of junior and senior kindergarten age. I did all the usual stuff. Supervising them at creative games, work, and play. Making sure they had their snacks and rest periods. Although I didn’t carry a certificate I’ve had plenty of experience — four younger sisters, four sons, and a lot of babysitting as both pre-teen and teenager. I love children if only for their natural curiosity and unaffected enthusiasm for life. I’m lucky because children always seem to trust and like me. — 439 words.

How My Husband Saved Me From Extortion

In response to "Everyone Pays, Few Want to Stop," a front-page article by Francesca Mereu on June 20, The Moscow Times.


I run a medium-size beauty salon in Moscow. When I bought the salon two years ago, I was faced with several extortion attempts by city fire inspectors. — 215 words

Time for some answers on 13th case
of mad cow disease found in five years

By Alex Binkley
True North Perspective

Originally written for Ontario Farmer

Now that the Canadian Food Inspection Agency has found the country’s 13thconfirmed case of BSE in five years, it’s time for some answers. — 455 words

Health Watch

Teens turning-on to flavoured cigarillos

With 35 per cent of Grade 10 to 12 students having tried cigar products,
the Canadian Cancer Society is calling for a ban

By Carly Weeks
The Globe and Mail

An alarming number of Canadian teens are smoking fruit-flavoured cigarillos, a new survey reveals, which should prompt governments across the country to ban the products immediately, the Canadian Cancer Society says. — 669 words.

From the Desk of Mike (the Hammer) Garvin

Volkswagen Tiguan HyMotion Concept


To bolster its position as a green automaker, Volkswagen developed a fuel-cell variant of its all-new Tiguan compact SUV.

The Tiguan HyMotion Concept runs solely on hydrogen. It produces no tailpipe emissions, as clean water vapor is the only byproduct of fuel cell vehicles. Volkswagen debuted the vehicle at the last Bidendum Challenge in Shanghai -- an international competition aiming to promote sustainable automotive development. — 191 words.

Real Journalists Don't Make $5 Million a Year

The millionaire courtiers who pass as journalists, ‘including the late Tim Russert, never gave a voice to credible critics in the buildup to the war against Iraq … These courtiers blindly accept the administration's current propaganda to justify an attack on Iran. They parrot this propaganda.’

By Chris Hedges

Chris Hedges, a Pulitzer prize-winning reporter, is a Senior Fellow at the Nation Institute. His latest book is Collateral Damage: America's War Against Iraqi Civilians.899 words.

F.A.A. Bans Antismoking Drug, Citing Side Effects

'… some Chantix users had developed a variety of serious psychiatric symptoms, and that some had committed suicide.'

By Stephanie Saul
The New York Times

The Federal Aviation Administration said Wednesday it would no longer permit pilots or air traffic controllers to use the smoking cessation drug Chantix, (formerly known aa Varenicline) citing potential side effects that could pose a threat to the safe operation of aircraft. — 612 words.

Top UN nuclear weapons expert exposes
nuclear weapons expert who never was

‘David Albright has a track record of making half-baked
analyses derived from questionable sources seem mainstream.’

By Scott Ritter

I am a former U.N. weapons inspector. I started my work with the United Nations in September 1991, and between that date and my resignation in August 1998, I participated in over 30 inspections, 14 as chief inspector. — 3,488 words.

Pillow talk lands China officials in jail
after mistresses tell all to graft busters

DONGGUAN (China Daily) — Anti-graft authorities in this industrial city are using the mistresses of officials to find out about their corrupt practices. — 315 words.

Dual personality of glass explained at last
opens door to new, stronger metallic-glass

By Colin Barras news service

Although glass feels like a solid, its molecules cannot quite settle into a regular 3D lattice, instead taking on the disordered arrangement of a liquid. Quite why glass behaves like this has been unclear. — 385 words.

Girls are as competitive as boys – just more subtle
Boys grab and chase while girls exclude and hide

By By Ed Yong news service

Girls are no less competitive than boys, they simply employ more subtle tactics, a study of pre-schoolers suggests. While boys use head-on aggression to get what they want, girls rely on the pain of social exclusion. — 298 words.

From Vancouver to Vladivostok

‘… a serious new model for the new era in global affairs.'

By Fyodor Lukyanov
The Moscow Times

President Dmitry Medvedev has made a number of foreign policy statements since taking office. His speech at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum has drawn the most attention, although it was lacking something new in content. But his June 5 speech in Berlin was remarkable, especially in the context of the rejection a week later of the Treaty of Lisbon, a document that represented a watered-down version of the failed European Constitution.— 298 words.

US drops Mandela and ANC from terror list

International Independent Online

WASHINGTON — President George Bush has removed former South African president Nelson Mandela and his African National Congress from the United States terror watch list, the White House said Tuesday. — 241 words.

Publisher appeals to Medvedev to grant
Russian status to investigative journalist

MOSCOW — The publisher of the muckraking weekly magazine The New Times has asked President Dmitry Medvedev to grant Russian citizenship to journalist Natalya Morar, a Moldovan national barred from entering Russia. — 191 words.

Now, the backlash

The sex industry is booming, the rape conviction rate is plummeting, women's bodies are picked over in the media, abortion rights are under serious threat and top business leaders say they don't want to employ women. It all adds up to one thing ... an all-out assault on feminism. But why? And what's to be done about it, asks Kira Cochrane3,298 words.

Gas Guzzlers Still Kings of Russia's Roads

Ford and GM sales boom in expanding Russian market
When in bad mood Russian drives his Hummer to work

By Maria Antonova
The Moscow Times

As American automakers ponder record losses due to the falling popularity of trucks and SUVs, larger cars are breaking sales records in Russia. — 1,020 words.

European Union won’t accept Zimbabwe election and
demands opposition leader Tsvangirai be given power

PARIS (Reuters) - The European Union will only accept a Zimbabwean government headed by opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai, French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner, whose country has taken over the EU presidency, said on Tuesday. — 88 words.

State orders military to attack 'rebels'

International Independent Online

JUBA, Sudan - Southern Sudan has ordered its military to attack anyone bearing arms outside Ugandan rebel assembly points in an attempt to clampdown on anti-civilian attacks, Vice-President Riek Machar said on Tuesday. — 186 words.

The Obama Agenda

‘Will he be a Ronald Reagan of the left and fundamentally change
the country’s direction, or will he be just another Bill Clinton?’

By Paul Krugman
The New York Times

It's feeling a lot like 1992 right now. It's also feeling a lot like 1980. But which parallel is closer? Is Barack Obama going to be a Ronald Reagan of the left, a president who fundamentally changes the country's direction? Or will he be just another Bill Clinton? Current polls - not horse-race polls, which are notoriously uninformative until later in the campaign, but polls gauging the public mood - are strikingly similar to those in both 1980 and 1992, years in which an overwhelming majority of Americans were dissatisfied with the country's direction. — 799 words.

Wounded Iraqi forces say they've been abandoned
as they learn of care given wounded U.S. veterans

By Michael Kamber
International Herald Tribune

BAGHDAD - Dawoud Ameen, a former Iraqi soldier, lay in bed, his shattered legs splayed before him, worrying about the rent for his family of five. — 1,587 words.

Mongolia enforces martial law in capital
amid political unrest over election results

By Jim Yardley
International Herald Tribune

ULAN BATOR — Armed soldiers enforced martial law on the streets of Mongolia's capital on Wednesday, a day after five people were killed as hundreds angered by election results rioted, Mongolian state news media reported. — 434 words.

China's anti-graft chief to tighten supervision
over use of quake relief resources

BEIJING (Xinhua) Discipline inspection departments at all levels should tighten supervision over use of quake relief fund and goods to ensure they were properly used for quake-affected people, a top Chinese discipline inspection official said Tuesday. — 140 words.

Advice for President Obama at start of 300 years of U.S.-Russia diplomacy
as two young presidents take the helm in January

By Richard Lourie
The Moscow Times

Richard Lourie is the author of A Hatred For Tulips and Sakharov: A Biography.

Hard as it will be for Barack Obama to bring change to Washington should he become president, it will be harder still to bring change to Washington's relations with Moscow. — 648 words.

U.S. forced to confront its Bolivian problem
as 20,000 protesters haze La Paz embassy

By Janine Zacharia
Bloomberg News

WASHINGTON — As U.S. diplomats huddled in their La Paz embassy on June 9, some 20,000 Bolivian protesters outside burned tires, threw dynamite and fired pepper spray at the police, who countered with tear gas and water cannons. &mdash869 words.

German Bertelsmann closes bookstores throughout China

BEIJING (China Daily) — Bertelsmann, the German media group, will close all its Chinese bookstores, underscoring the difficulties that booksellers are facing from fierce online competition and changing reading habits. — 869 words.

$2 Billion in US Aid to Pakistan Questioned

Overall, the US has paid more than $5 billion
to reimburse the country for counter-terrorism expenses

By Greg Miller
The Los Angeles Times

WASHINGTON - The United States has paid more than $5 billion to reimburse Pakistan for counter-terrorism expenses that have often been exaggerated, if not fabricated, according to a government audit released Tuesday that blasts the Pentagon for poor management of the program. — 752 words.

US economy on brink of recession, Greenspan says

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan warned on Tuesday the U.S. economy was on the brink of a recession, with the chances of that happening at more than 50 percent. — 325 words.

Big Brother Stoking China's Red-Hot Economy

The iron rice bowl may be just cracked, not broken

By Tony Sagami
Money and Markets

One of the first books I read as an economics major at the University of Washington was Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations. It was then that I first learned about what he called the 'invisible hand of capitalism.' Smith believed that an individual pursuing his or her own self-interest tends also to promote the good of their community as a whole. To paraphrase Gordon Gecko, it's the notion that "Greed is good." China of all places has actually embraced many of those same core capitalist principles. The controlling Communist Party also believes, however, in the not-so-invisible hand of Big Brother (government). — 1,174 words.

Something Old, Something New

‘ … former President Boris Yeltsin had the most progressive views on freedom of the press, although there were practically no transparent and honest media businesses during his presidency.’

By Alexei Pankin
The Moscow Times

We have no special controls on mass media that differ from those in other countries." These were the words of President Dmitry Medvedev in answer to a question from Reuters agency several days before the EU-Russia summit in Khanty-Mansiisk. — 571 words.

Random Acts of Poetry
By Mike Heenan, Literary Editor

In our second frenzied act of blatant self-promotion this year, we offer our own selected Urban Affairs & Country Matters (BizPoint, 2008) this week. Available at Connor’s Gaelic Pub (Bank & MacLaren), Gabriel’s Pizza (Bank & Somerset) and at 613-230-4640. — 1,130 words.

Spirit Quest

“Summertime and the livin' is easy,”  - so in Gershwin’s “Porgy and Bess.”

By The Rev. Dr. Hanns F. Skoutajan

Yes, it is that time of the year when we seek to relax in a tent or cottage on a beautiful lake or just take it easy at home.  The price of fuel nowadays may cause many to cut back on travel. Some people, myself included, are staying close to home. I have always thought of June 30th as the year’s end, a time to be free from the classroom and homework. And the day after Labour Day always seemed like the beginning of a new year. Those two months in between were a kind of blessed hiatus, a time to do as I please, within reason of course. — 793 words.

The Book End

A novel by Kevin Dooley

(Ottawa: Baico, 2006)

Every Friday in this spot True North will feature a book by a Canadian writer. The presentation will not be a review. It will include a profile of the author written by him/herself and about the product of the author’s literary labours. If a reader wants to file a review we’ll publish it. Today we offer The Hob, a novel by Kevin Dooley — Mike Heenan, Literary Editor. (For book cover, synopsis, and author profile please click here.) 

Michael Kevin Dooley, Irish born and bred, came to Canada in 1977 after 11 years at sea and living in Britain, Australia and South Africa. A work life as a Machinist and Marine Engineer followed, including service in the Coast Guard until a work injury ended it. Writing, long an avocation with many stories and novels written by hand, is now his vocation. — 316 words.

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Carl Dow, Editor and Publisher
Geoffrey Dow, Managing Editor
Yvette Pigeon, Associate Editor
Mike Heenan, Literary Editor
Benoit Jolicoeur, Art Director
Ian Covey, Director of Photography
Carl Hall, Technical Analyst and Web Editor
Contributing Editors
Rosaleen Dickson
Tom Dow
Randy Ray
Harold Wright