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Friday, June 6, 2008 Vol 3 No 22 (136)
"True North is for opinion makers"
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From the Desk of Joan Kuyek, National Coordinator, MiningWatch Canada

Newfoundland Labrador tells Innu to destroy homes
and lodges or face $1,000 fines and three months jail

ST. JOHNS — More than 100 Innu families who are now occupying and using their aboriginal homeland in Newfoundland Labrador recently received eviction notices from the provincial government of Newfoundland Labrador. The Removal Notices direct Innu families to "remove all structures from Crown land and restore the site to its original conditions within 60 days of notice." Failure to do so will result in the Crown Lands Division demolishing their homes and charging the costs of demolition to the Innu families. — 761 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:

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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, June 6, 2008

Of what stuff be these men made?

‘…all the Senate Committee on Intelligence can say is “Tsk-tsk. Naughty boy.”’ — 357 words

Judge Harold Wright studies case
of the universal hidden gas coupon

Like the Scarlet Pimpernel you see it here…you see it there… — 49 words.

Health Watch

A Superhighway to Bliss

By Leslie Kaufman
New York Times

JILL BOLTE TAYLOR was a neuroscientist working at Harvard’s brain research center when she experienced nirvana. But she did it by having a stroke. — 1,493 words.

When to skip that massage

Some doos and don’ts on that glorious feeling

Story Highlights


West Virginia, Incest Virginia?

How the Mountain State got a reputation for inbreeding

By Juliet Lapidos
Assistant Editor
Slate Magazine

At the National Press Club on Monday, U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney noted that his maternal grandmother is descended from someone named Cheney, then quipped, "So we had Cheneys on both sides of the family—and we don't even live in West Virginia." (Click here for a video.)  In response, Sen. Robert Byrd of West Virginia railed against the veep, accusing him of "astounding ignorance toward his own countrymen." — 487 words.

Corporate executives pressured journalists on Iraq

By Steve Benen
The Carpetbagger Report

The notion that corporate executives would lean on the executives at news networks was more than a little disconcerting. But it’s just as important to realize that journalists were also under pressure to deliberately sell the public a bill of goods. — 590 words.

Armed forces chief is bounced upstairs
as Russia struggles with military focus

‘…political leadership … needs to decide on what kind of armed forces it wants and what they should focus on …’ — 879 words.

Is Barack Obama too naive to be President?

By Fred Kaplan
Slate Magazine

The question of the moment: Is Barack Obama too naive to be commander in chief?

Now that Obama is the presumptive Democratic candidate, this is the line of attack that John McCain is aggressively pushing. In part, this is because he doesn't have much else to run on. In part, it's because there's video footage, from the Democratic primary contests, of Hillary Clinton making the same accusation. — 1,077 words.

Be Fruitful And Multiply

‘ … raising triplets is different from having twins — they learn at an early age that when two of them are fighting for a toy, the third one can come in and take it.’

Shocked but proud Russian parents
Andrei and Ludmilla Malik

By Svetlana Osadchuk
The Moscow Times

Andrei Malik, a logistics specialist from the Moscow suburb of Odintsovo, was shocked when he found out that he was going to become the father of three boys at once.  Doctors first insisted that his wife, Ludmila, was carrying twins, but an ultrasound at 22 weeks revealed that they were wrong.  — 1,311 words.

Doha Round Negotiations: Same old whipping boy

‘… two key matters that get far too little attention in all the talk about the food crisis. One is the need for more efficient aid programs to revitalize the agricultural sector in poorer countries and the other is to reform food aid in a way so that it doesn’t undercut local farmers.’

By Alex Binkley
Originally written for Ontario Farmer      

The state of the world’s food supply is getting a lot of attention in the news media these days. Soaring prices, food riots and a high profile FAO summit in early June gave it plenty to chew on. — 433 words.

From the Desk of Joan Kuyek, National Coordinator, MiningWatch Canada

Embarrassed Ontario government frees
seven native leaders after two months jail

‘We're absolutely thrilled the KI-6 and Lovelace have been released, but what needs to change is the Mining Act.’

‘Tragically Hip dedicate song to Lovelace’

By Chris Webb

Seven indigenous leaders from North West Ontario who were jailed for protecting their land were released on May 28. Their case caused national embarrassment for the Ontario provincial government and revealed just how easy it is for companies to mine on First Nation's land without permission. — 766 words.

On return from Beijing Premier Campbell announces
China will finance credit courses in B.C. high schools

By Lucy-Claire Saunders
The Asian Pacific Post

Returning from his fifth trip to Beijing since he became premier in 2005, Gordon Campbell has announced a string of British Columbia/China initiatives — some predictable and some quite out of the ordinary. — 325 words.

Bush blackmails Iraq to sign permanent occupation agreement
by holding control of $50 billion foreign reserves in military deal

By Patrick Cockburn
The Independent UK

The US is holding hostage some $50bn (¬£25bn) of Iraq's money in the Federal Reserve Bank of New York to pressure the Iraqi government into signing an agreement seen by many Iraqis as prolonging the US occupation indefinitely, according to information leaked to The Independent.— 776 words.

McDonough stuck to basics: caring society, better world
as she broke the all-male barrier in Nova Scotia legislature

‘The numbers don’t explain how her quiet competence put Nova Scotians at ease about the NDP and set the stage for the party’s rise to contend for government.’

The Cape Breton Post

Going strictly by numbers, one could make a case that Alexa McDonough’s political career has been a disappointment. One number would be hard to explain away: It’s 27 — the number of years, approximately, that the Halifax politician has held elected public office. — 504 words.

A ten-percent drop in military spending by NATO
would free $100 billion for the poor: Cuban leader 

Cuban leader José Ramon Machado Ventura said recently that if NATO were to reduce military spending by 10 per cent, it would free almost $100 billion to alleviate suffering by the poor. Mr. Ventura was speaking at the Conference on World Food Security: The Challenges of Climate Change and Bioenergy that was called to consider action required to win worldwide food security. — 792 words.

Death of a Saleswoman

How Hillary Clinton lost me—and a generation of young voters.

By Meghan O'Rourke
Literary Editor
Slate Magazine

In the coming days, as Hillary Clinton moves to the sidelines and Barack Obama takes the stage alone, many people will suggest that America just wasn't ready for a female president. This may be true. But we'll never entirely know, because Clinton did not invite us to spend much time contemplating the momentous fact that she was the first female presidential candidate with any chance of occupying that position.  — 1,694 words.

Room at the top with no loyalist left behind
as Putin-Medvedev take their seats of power

By Georgy Bovt
The Moscow Times

MOSCOW — I have heard some disparaging remarks about the recent government reshuffle. Some people had expected bigger changes. Although official announcements indicated that up to two-thirds of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin's staff were new, those changes were accomplished by simply reshuffling the same old people around. Of course, optimists say Putin is very energetic, so the White House will now work with greater vigor. They point to Putin's decision to create a presidium of 15 ministers as proof of his efforts to increase efficiency. — 640 words.

Venezuela’s Justice Minister Launches New ‘Humanist’ Prisons

‘…always following the principle that those who go to jail are human beings who may be rehabilitated…”

By James Suggett

Mérida — Venezuela’s new “socialist” penitentiary system will be inaugurated by the end of this year, according to the Venezuelan Interior and Justice Minister Ramón Rodríguez Chacín.  As a step in this direction, the construction of Venezuela’s first “humanist” prison, which is "one of the most modern facilities worldwide,” was finished recently in the city of Coro, the minister reported last week. — 550 words.

From the Desk of Jennifer Grant, M.Sc., Policy Analyst The Pembina Institute

Dene First Nation takes Alberta court action to challenge
arbitrary oil sands tenure and regulatory approval system

EDMONTON, Alberta — The Chipewyan Prairie Dene First Nation (CPDFN) filed legal action Wednesday, June 4, in the Alberta Court of Queen's Bench against the Alberta Government, alleging a breach of Alberta's constitutional duty to consult with the First Nation on MEG Energy Corp.'s Christina Lake Regional Project, Phase 3.  — 531 words.

Jumbo Jet for Sale

What happens to a plane when an airline retires it?

By Chris Wilson
Slate Magazine

United Airlines announced Wednesday that it will remove 100 jets from its fleet, including all 94 of its Boeing 737s, a popular single-aisle jet. What do airlines do with planes they don't need anymore? — 345 words.

Did you know?

Homes Quiz – by Mark Kearney and Randy Ray

For many Canadians, their home is their castle.  It’s where they spend the greatest portion of their time relaxing with friends and family, entertaining, tackling odd jobs, or sleeping.  They also spend a large chunk of their income on mortgage payments, property taxes, repairs and upgrades.

But how much do Canadians know about the homes they live in or are planning to buy?  As you tour open houses in search of your dream home this spring, or plan renovations at your existing abode, we invite you to test your knowledge of housing with our trivia quiz.. We’ll pose one question each issue here. You can find the answer at the bottom of the page. Good  luck!

Unscramble the following letters in each selection to spell the name of a common household object.
a)  ucatef   b)  eatrots  c)  nfaercu   d)  vetealos

Randy Ray of Ottawa and Mark Kearney of London, Ont. are the authors of seven books, including Pucks, Pablum & Pingos, a Canadian trivia book, published in April.  Visit their Web site at:

Senate panel rejects case for war but leaves
war-loser and treason president off the hook

By Greg Miller
The Los Angeles Times

The panel's reproach, the most pointed on pre-invasion intelligence, doesn't call for penalties or a follow-up inquiry.

WASHINGTON — In a long-delayed report, the Senate Intelligence Committee on Thursday rebuked President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney for making prewar claims — particularly that Iraq had close ties to Al Qaeda — that were not supported by available intelligence. — 1,372 words.

George Bush, at sea in the desert grinning foolishly
while stone-faced hosts barely hide their contempt

Only Bush was laughing – The others were just patiently polite.
US President George W. Bush (R) meets with Jordan's King Abdullah (L) in Sharm El Sheikh, May 18, 2008. [Agencies]

‘Bush seemed oblivious to the loss of respect for the United States that his Mideast misadventures have caused in the region.’ — 740 words.

First World Mind Sports Games to be held in Beijing in October

ATHENS - The Olympics and Paralympics won't be the only global multi-sports events in Beijing this year.

The Chinese capital will host the first World Mind Sports Games from Oct. 3-18, featuring five events and - yes - doping controls. — 278 words.

Relaxed policy on auto joint venture expected
as China opens door wider to foreign capital

By Shangguan Zhoudong

BEIJING — China's policy on automotive joint ventures is expected to be loosened and the ceiling for foreign capital investing in joint ventures raised, the Economic Observer quoted an insider as saying. "The shareholding structure for Sino-foreign automakers will likely be not that strictly restricted in the future as economic reform deepens," said Zhang Xiaoyu, executive vice chairman of the China Machinery Industry Federation, at a recent industry forum. — 265 words.

Medvedev halts censorship bid
by sinking new media libel law

By Staff Writer

MOSCOW — President Dmitry Medvedev has in effect sunk proposed changes to the law that would have given courts the power to close media outlets suspected of libel. — 169 words.

‘Sock puppets’ use Amazon to discredit authors

By Barbara Florio Graham
True North Perspective

A well-respected author has been attacked on Amazon by "sock puppets." — 156 words.

A Russian cinematic double take on WW II 
shines a softer light on ‘The Great Satan’

‘…his wife is going away with another man. He has nothing left. As he says, nothing left except for a huge bunch of Germans.’

By Peter Finn
Washington Post Foreign Service

VOISKOVITSY, Russia — In the 1994 Russian film Burnt by the Sun the idyllic life of a family at their country home outside Moscow is smashed on a single day by Stalinism. Fans of the movie, which won the Oscar for Best Foreign Film, are likely to be startled by a coming sequel. And not only because director Nikita Mikhalkov has reanimated characters who appeared to die in the original. — 1,351 words.

Interesting historical notes … by George Laidlaw

George Laidlaw is a novelist and President of the Ottawa Independent Writers.

The Clarity of Glass

Has anyone thought how important the production of glass has been in man's development?

Did you know that glass arrived in Britain in the 14th century and caused the British to change a law to protect their hardwood forests, forbidding the use of hardwood in klyns. This restriction served to promote the coal industry. — 114 words.

Spirit Quest

‘At the basis of most religions there is a mandate to help the stranger’

By The Rev. Dr. Hanns Skoutajan

An article in The Toronto Star (May 27) dealt with the tragedy of the SS St. Louis loaded with some 900 Jews who had left Germany in search of asylum. At that time, May 1939, the Nazis were still intent on cleansing their country of Jews. The Holocaust came later. — 703 words.

Random Acts of Poetry

By Mike Heenan, Literary Editor

Red Laquered Chopsticks by Betty Warrington-Kearsley is an astonishing and powerful volume of poetry. — 156 words.

The Book End

Make Your Imagination Rich

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 Make Your Imagination Rich by Shawn BentMike Heenan, Literary Editor. (For book cover, synopsis, and author profile please click here.) 

Link not working? Story not loading? Can't click on the links? Got another computer problem? Never fear! Carl is here!

If you have any problems with accessing the newsletter or problems with your computer, send an email to Carl Hall , and he will be more than happy to assist you.

Answer to Homes Quiz Did You Know?

a) faucet   b) toaster   c) furnace   d) loveseat


Carl Dow, Editor and Publisher
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
Geoffrey Dow
Tom Dow
Randy Ray
Harold Wright