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Friday, June 12, 2009, Vol. 4, No, 29 — 180
"True North is for opinion makers"
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What will new UN sanctions mean to North Korea?
Not much as military expands control over the economy

Value of North Korea sanctions disputed

International curbs after '06 explosion seen as ineffective

By Blaine Harden
Washington Post Foreign Service

UNITED NATIONS — Seven nations on Wednesday agreed on a package of expanded sanctions, including tougher cargo inspections and a tighter arms embargo, to punish the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) for its recent nuclear test and missile firings. — 866 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.

Editor's Notes

Friday, June 12, 2009
True North Perspective
Vol. 4, No. 29 (180)

CSIS holds the letter and spirit of Canadian democracy in contempt

The Canadian Security Intelligence Service is a rogue institution that is a menace to the peace and security of our country. Next week I’ll tell you why and how it happened. Meanwhile, following is a guest editorial from The Toronto Star. — 389 words.

Humour from the Court of Judge Harold Wright, Contributing Editor

Judge Wright, 88, on animal rescue: This time, it's personal!

As you probably already know, I love animals so I joined an animal rescue group last year and was assigned to protect the African Antelope.

Well, last week was my first real action, and fortunately my efforts were captured on the attached video.

I hope you enjoy it.

This type of work is rather tiring for a man of my age but it is most rewarding.

Even so, one rescue a day is all I can handle right now.



Picket line at Lord Lansdowne is the proverbial tip of the iceberg
as locals fight to rescue their neighbourood from noise pollution

By Carl Dow
Editor and Publisher
True North Perspective

Picket lines have been maintained twice a week and are being cut back to once a week while meetings are being held to develop a campaign that will consider community levels of peace and quiet, legal, and health related issues. — 166 words.

A Canadian hero

By Alex Binkley
True North Perspective

He's not a sports star, an emotive politician or a polished stage performer but Arnold Van Ginkel deserves to be known as a Canadian hero for simply doing the right thing at considerable cost to himself. — 525 words.

From the Desk of Catherine Coumans, Mining Watch

A walk through the valley of death

Violence surrounding a PNG mine raises questions about the company's responsibility

By Nick O'Malley
The Sydney Morning Herald

The convoy of LandCruisers halted at the base of the hill overlooking the mine pit. Police tumbled out of the trucks and worked their way up the hill, burning every structure they found. Homes, shanties, pig stys and market gardens were torched. Violence is not new to the Porgera Valley in Papua New Guinea's central highlands, but since the gold mine came it has changed. Now, rather than ritualised tribal warfare, there are reports of shootings by police, mine security and bandits, of rapes and beatings, of drug running and a lethal blackmarket in mercury, which is used to leach gold from stolen ore. There is prostitution and bootlegging, and an increase in domestic violence and sexually transmitted disease. — 2,547 words.

From the Desk of Regan Ray
Associate Editor
The Canadian Journalism Project

News? Not in our back yard ...

By Don Sellar

Don Sellar is a retired journalist whose career as a reporter and editor included 11 years as ombud at The Toronto Star. He lives in Port Hope, Ont.

It's a fact. Bedrock journalistic principles and news judgment can quickly fall by the wayside when media outlets or their corporate interests are in the news, especially in an unflattering way. Faced with the spectre of embarrassing their own nameplate, editors sometimes lose their customary zeal for tracking down a good story that just happened to break in their own building. — 854 words.

Drop your sense of entitlement, Ehrenreich tells a graduating class of media makers
Journalists are now "part of the working class"

Welcome to a dying industry, J-School grads

By Barbara Ehrenreich

Barbara Ehrenreich is the author of This Land is Their Land: Reports From a Divided Nation (Holt Paperbacks, April 2009). She delivered this commencement address on May 16 to the University of California, Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism Class of 2009.

The following is the text of Barbara Ehrenreich's commencement address on May 16 to the University of California, Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism Class of 2009.

The dean gave me some very strict instructions about what to say today. No whining and no crying at the podium. No wringing of hands or gnashing of teeth. Be upbeat, be optimistic, he said — adding that it wouldn't hurt to throw in a few tips about how to apply for food stamps. — 1,001 words.

Canadian hosts news program in Chechnya

By Anna Malpas
The Moscow Times

Dressed in a cream jacket and a patterned head scarf, the anchor turns to the camera and says in perfect English: "Good afternoon, this is Chrystal Callahan for Grozny TV." Callahan, a Canadian model and documentary director, began presenting an English-language news show on a Grozny television channel on Sunday. — 413 words.

Canadian space tourist starts training for ISS mission

By Staff Writers

MOSCOW — Guy Laliberte, the Canadian founder of entertainment company Cirque du Soleil, has started final preparations at Russia's Star City space training center for a 12-day trip to the International Space Station (ISS). — 300 words.

Canadian, U.S., U.K. life and health insurers investing heavily in tobacco companies

Canadian firm Sun Life has $1 billion in two companies

By Staff Writers
Agence France-Presse

Major U.S., Canadian and British life and health insurance companies have billions of dollars invested in tobacco companies, says a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine. Wesley Boyd, the study's lead author, found that at least $4.4 billion US in insurance company funds are invested in companies whose affiliates produce cigarettes, cigars and chewing tobacco. — 330 words.

Archeological evidence of human activity found beneath Lake Huron

By Staff Writers

More than 100 feet deep in Lake Huron, on a wide stoney ridge that 9,000 years ago was a land bridge, University of Michigan researchers have found the first archeological evidence of human activity preserved beneath the Great Lakes. — 670 words.

Geography and history shape genetic differences in humans

By Staff Writers

CHEVY CHASE, Mda. — New research indicates that natural selection may shape the human genome much more slowly than previously thought. Other factors — the movements of humans within and among continents, the expansions and contractions of populations, and the vagaries of genetic chance — have heavily influenced the distribution of genetic variations in populations around the world. — 525 words.

Nova Scotia beckons

By Alberte Villeneuve-Sinclair

Alberte Villeneuve-Sinclair is the author of "The Neglected Garden/Le jardin négligé" and "Une prière pour Hélène". Her website is

I love Nova Scotia's television advertisement. It beckons and I have wanted to go back to Nova Scotia ever since my dear friend and former teaching partner retired and moved to Beaver Harbour where her husband, Austin, was born and raised. — 1,125 words.

Mad or bad?
Mentally challenged must be rescued from institutional revolving door

By Sigrid Macdonald
True North Perspective

More by author and editor Sigrid Macdonald may be seen by clicking

OTTAWA, Canada — According to PBS Frontline, there are over one million mentally ill inmates who will be released from prison in the United States within the next 18 months; the majority of these will not be able to function outside of a supervised environment, and will therefore be rearrested, after either causing havoc or harm to themselves or others. — 668 words.

Size matters: little Mercury could destabilize our solar system

Earth-Venus smash-up possible in 3.5 billion years

By Staff Writers

A force known as orbital chaos may cause our Solar System to go haywire, leading to possible collision between Earth and Venus or Mars, according to a study released Wednesday. — 538 words.

Return of the Mars hoax

By Dr. Tony Phillips

HUNTSVILLE, Al. — Just when you thought it was safe to check your email...For the sixth year in a row, a message about the Red Planet is popping up in email boxes around the world. It instructs readers to go outside after dark on August 27th and behold the sky. "Mars will look as large as the full moon," it says. "No one alive today will ever see this again." — 502 words.

Blue Sky Network and Iridium equip northwest Open Passage voyage

By Staff Writers

LA JOLLA, Ca. — Blue Sky Network (BSN) and Iridium Satellite (Iridium) have announced that they have agreed to supply the Open Passage Expedition with voice communications and GPS mapping technology for its four month-long Arctic journey. — 499 words.

In case you missed it ...
The Old Man's Last Sauna, a collection of short stories by Carl Dow

The short story, The Old Man's Last Sauna, a groundbreaking love story, in the Friday, April 24 edition of True North Perspective, concludes the collection titled The Old Man's Last Sauna, written by Carl Dow. On Friday, April 17, you'll find O Ernie! ... What Have They Done To You! The series began Friday, February 20, with Deo Volente (God Willing). The second, The Quintessence of Mr. Flynn, Friday, February 27. The third, Sharing Lies, Friday, March 6. The fourth, Flying High, Friday, March 13. The fifth, The Richest Bitch in the Country or Ginny I Hardly Knows Ya, Friday, March 20. On Friday, March 27, One Lift Too Many, followed by The Model A Ford, Friday, April 3. The out-of-body chiller, Room For One Only, Friday, April 10. The series closed Friday, April 24, with the collection's namesake The Old Man's Last Sauna, a groundbreaking love story. All stories may be found in the True North Perspective Archives. — Mike Heenan, Literary Editor.

Defense Focus: The war that reshaped the world

Hitler’s lunatic master race fantasy of conquering the west and enslaving the Slavs for 1,000 years was drowned in a six-year bloodbath that saw up to 80 million killed

By Martin Sieff

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama celebrated the 65th anniversary of D-Day this weekend. D-Day marked the beginning of the end for Nazi Germany. Within three months, its conquests of France and Poland had been reversed by the Anglo-American armies driving from the west and the Soviet Red Army from the east. — 1,147 words.

Obama in Cairo: A New Face for Imperialism

By Patrick Martin|Perspective

The speech delivered by US President Barack Obama in Cairo yesterday was riddled with contradictions. He declared his opposition to the "killing of innocent men, women, and children," but defended the ongoing US wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the US proxy war in Pakistan, while remaining silent on the most recent Israeli slaughter of Palestinians in Gaza. These wars have killed at least one million Iraqis and tens of thousands in Afghanistan, Pakistan and the Palestinian territories. — 1,156 words.

A bottom-up democracy

By Boris Kagarlitsky
The Moscow Times

It had to happen sooner or later. The first bill on nationalization has been submitted to the State Duma. That such a bill would appear in Russia only after similar legislation was introduced in Britain and the United States might seem paradoxical, at least at first glance. After all, Moscow officials would rather die than be accused of an attempt to revive communism. This is especially true of senior government officials in the "economic bloc" whose job is to please investors. In recent years, the less liberal Moscow's political regime has become, the more effort officials have had to make to demonstrate Russia's supposed adherence to economic liberalism. — 686 words.

Billionaire Russian Senator can't get Canadian visa
because of suspected links to organized crime

By Nikolaus von Twickel
The Moscow Times

Canada has refused to give a visa to Russia Federation Council Senator Vitaly Malkin for more than a decade, claiming that the billionaire has links to organized crime, according to public records of the Canadian Federal Court. — 937 words.

The privatization of "Obama's War"

By Michael Winship|Perspective

The sudden reappearance of former Vice President Dick Cheney over the last few months — seeming to emerge from his famous undisclosed location more frequently now than he ever did when he was in office — does not mean six more weeks of winter. But it does bring to mind that classic country and western song, "How Can I Miss You When You Won't Go Away?" — 988 words and two videos.

Gazprom aims to supply 10 per cent of U.S. gas by 2020

By Staff Writers

Gazprom is seeking as much as 10 percent of the U.S. gas market by 2020, after two Arctic liquefied natural gas projects start producing, deputy CEO Alexander Medvedev told reporters Tuesday. — 297 words.

Georgia to leave Commonwealth of Independent States
as neighbours fear what the Russian bear will do next

By John C.K. Daly

WASHINGTON — Georgia hopes to continue its free-trade arrangements with members of the Commonwealth of Independent States after its withdrawal from the organization takes place on Aug. 18. Given the aftereffects of its ill-advised five-day military clash with Russia last August, that may prove to be a forlorn hope, as the confrontation reminded the other Caucasian former Soviet republics of Azerbaijan and Armenia that Moscow is determined to protect what Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has labeled its "privileged interests" in the former Soviet space. — 1,042 words.

'Going to the police never crossed my mind'

'Academic studies, for their part, have concluded that because of their social awareness Cuban women react "more forcefully" against gender violence than women in other countries, even though they are still not fully informed, especially with respect to their legal rights.'

By Patricia Grogg
Inter Press Service

HAVANA — Mercedes Toyo has finally started to smile again after many years of tears and violence. But the bad memories linger. "Now I’m being courted by a 50-year-old man who tells me I’m too wary, that I don’t let anyone get too close," she told IPS in the living room of her house. — 1,268 words.

'No means no' and 'Yes means yes'

Students draw the line on sexual violence

By Stephanie Gilmore
On the Issues Magazine

"Sexual violence is a problem on this campus!"

"Your silence will not protect you!"

"What do we want? Safety! When do we want it? Now!"

On the limestone steps of Old West, outside the admissions building where campus tours for new students and their parents begin and end, and in front of the Board of Trustees, hundreds of students shouted these chants throughout the day on April 24, 2009 at a protest against sexual assault and rape at Dickinson College, a selective liberal arts college in Carlisle, PA. This campus is not known historically as a hotbed of activism. But when it comes to sexual violence, feminists from all walks of life stormed the campus this day, building on continued work within and beyond administrative processes and conversations about campus culture. — 832 words.

Harold Wright, Doctor of Punology, sez:

"A grenade thrown into a kitchen in France would result in 'Linoleum Blownapart'."

True North Canuck Fact of the Day

What's bigger than a steamroller?

U.S.-based 1960’s rock band Buffalo Springfield featuring Canada’s Neil Young, took its name from a steamroller the band spotted at the side of the road. "Wouldn’t it be groovy if we ever got as big as that steamroller," a member of the band joked at the time.

Trivia compiled by Randy Ray and Mark Kearney, authors of nine books about Canada. For more fabulous facts, visit their Web site at:

China's Hu to attend first BRIC summit

By Staff Writers

BEIJING — Chinese President Hu Jintao is to visit Russia next week to take part in the first-ever summit of leaders of BRIC countries, the foreign ministry said Tuesday. — 191 words.

Russia may swap some U.S. treasuries for IMF debt

By Alex Nicholson

Russia’s central bank said it may cut investments in U.S. Treasuries, currently valued at as much as $140 billion, a week after China said it may reduce reliance on the dollar and American bonds. — 614 words.

China may buy up to $50 billion in IMF bonds

By Staff Writers

BEIJING — China said on June 5th, 2009 it could invest up to 50 billion dollars in the International Monetary Fund's first-ever bonds, state media reported, in yet another sign of the nation's growing financial muscle. — 765 words.

Spirit Quest

A nod to the Buddhist essence of civilization

By The Rev. Dr. Hanns F. Skoutajan

"Small is beautiful" so asserted E. F. Schumacher, a British economist of the 20th century. His dictum went against the grain of everything and everybody. The trend and the incentives after World War II was to grow, to compete, to elbow to the top, to become BIG. — 722 words.

Young Writers

With this issue, True North Perspective opens an international platform for young writers throughout the world. There will be no restrictions on what you write, except that you should limit the number of words to 800 or less. Your work will be read in growing numbers on all continents. Please feel free to express your experiences and opinions in fact or in fiction. Looking forward. — Mike Heenan, Literary Editor, True North Perspective.

The following short story was written by Benoit Jolicoeur, age 16. Benoit is a grade 10 student at the French-language École secondaire publique De La Salle, Ottawa, Canada. The story was written as part of his Enriched English class.

Face to Face

By Benoit Jolicoeur

I am afraid. I am traumatized. Finally, I have done it. I did it. I am wet with sweat. I have been like this for many months. My mother died a while ago, my father left shortly after. The government took care of me and my brothers. I have grown. Now I am strong. — 724 words.

The Explainer

Canada will convert August 31, 2011

Today throughout the United States there is taking place a massive conversion to digital from analog TV

Carl Hall, True North Perspective's Technical Analyst and Web Editor, tells us what the change means to the average viewer

By Carl Hall
Technical Analyst and Web Editor
True North Perspective

Today, Friday, June 12, 2009, all over the air analog TV stations in the United States shut down converting to a 100% digital signal. What does this mean to the average person? How does it affect the way we watch TV? What are the advantages? Disadvantages? Costs? — 480 words.


When things don't work

By Barbara Florio Graham
True North Perspective

Barbara Florio Graham is the author of Five Fast Steps to Better Writing, Five Fast Steps to Low-Cost Publicity, and Mewsings/Musings. Her website is

Raise your hand if you've wrestled with a malfunctioning piece of equipment in the past few months? Welcome to the club. — 837 words.

The Big Book of Canadian Trivia now in stores

Ottawa author Randy Ray and his co-author Mark Kearney of London, Ont. have published their ninth Canadian book, The Big Book of Canadian Trivia, which is now available in stores and on the authors' Web site at:

The latest Ray-Kearney effort is best described as a "greatest hits" book that contains the best Canadiana from their previous eight books, plus a considerable amount of new material.

In one big book readers will find all the trivia and facts about Canada they need to know: there are stories of important Canadian artifacts and history including what became of Canada's World War II spy camp.

All regions and provinces are covered, as well as important Canadian figures like John Molson, Elizabeth Arden and Russ Jackson.

If that isn't enough there will also be pieces explaining whatever happened to such Canadian icons as the last spike, labour leader Bob White, hockey tough guy Dave "The Hammer" Schultz, the first skidoo, swimmer Marilyn Bell and the first Tim Hortons donut shop.

Some items are "classics." Others are little known facts. Approximately 25% of the material has never before appeared in print.

This fascinating Big Book brings together for the first time in one package the most notable facts and trivia from the archives of the trivia guys' collection.

The Big Book of Canadian Trivia is published by The Dundurn Group of Toronto.

Website may be path to success
for authors, publishers, and companies

Prolific best-selling Ottawa author and publicist Randy Ray has developed a website to promote his publicity services, which he offers to authors, publishers and companies. Mr. Ray has helped many clients get their message out across Canada on CTV, CBC Radio, CH-TV, A-Channel and Global TV, and in the Globe and Mail, Toronto Star, Ottawa Citizen, Ottawa Sun, Halifax Herald and many Ottawa-area weekly newspapers. Mr. Ray's web site is: He can be contacted at: (613) 731-3873 or

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.


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
Anita Chan, Australia
Rosaleen Dickson
Tom Dow
Bob Kay
Randy Ray
David Ward
Harold Wright