Anthony Bourdain Still Dead After Six Months

Bourdain Still Dead After Six Months

by C. L. Cook - Pacific Free Press

December 12, 2018


"Anxiety and depression are normal reactions to circumstances that are profoundly disordered: when lies are promoted as truth, ugliness as beauty, and fear is your motivation. Do not medicalize your pain: fight back. You will die anyway, but give yourself a reason to live." ~ Werner Twertzog sez


Fishing through the head-side newspaper rack for a cryptic crossword to take into the bath, I came across an aged, single, yellowing page of the 'Life' section of a local rag.

The challenge puzzles long done, I settled into the tub anyway with the Jumble and a standard, ten-minute Grid-for-Dummies. Eleven minutes later I turned the page, hoping to see what I knew wasn't on the other side, another puzzle.

Instead, there below a large photograph of Anthony Bourdain, were a pair of articles, obituaries of the feted author, famous television show host/producer, and globe-trotting kitchen raconteur found hanged in his suite at the five star, Hotel Le Chambard in Kayserberg, France.

The subhead of the first, a syndicated piece from the Associated Press, informed,


"Chef whose whimsical sense of adventure won millions of fans is thought to have hanged himself at hotel".

A little more than six months from the day, that's how the story remains.


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  • Written by Christopher Black

Taking Huawei Hostage: The Canadian Angle on Meng Arrest

Canada's Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Take China Hostage in "Rules-Based Order" Plot

by Christopher Black - via Dances with Bears

December 9, 2018


“It is clear the US is pushing the battle line to our door… We can completely regard the US arrest of Meng Wanzhou as a declaration of war against China.”


Toronto - So read an editorial in the Global Times of China on December 6, the day after Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer of the Chinese company Huawei was taken hostage by the Canadian and American governments on December 1.

The daughter of the founder of China’s largest telecommunications company was arbitrarily arrested and detained by Canadian police in Vancouver in transit between planes on December 1 on the pretext of a US extradition request.

The arrest has shocked and angered China while in Canada the large Chinese population must wonder how safe they are.

The background to the arrest is fairly simple.



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  • Written by Bill Henderson

How Green Was My Energy Plan? Looking Critically at NDP's CleanBC Scheme

CleanBC: NDP/Green Magical Thinking 

by Bill Henderson

December 8, 2018

The NDP/Green government of BC has just released their new climate plan: CleanBC. The initial reviews are good.

The initiative's messaging has broad appeal; it looks to be a winner politically. Reps from BC ENGOs have welcomed the plan as needed climate leadership while pointing out that the emission reduction targets, though a cut above present emission reduction ambitions, are not nearly enough to stay under 2C let alone 1.5C.

There are lots of questions about the governments ability to craft policies to meet these targets, especially while planning to build an LNG export industry, but, in general, reaction has been positive because in reality the NDP/Green plan is less a climate plan than it is an optimistic, positive vision of a prosperous economy based on the growth of clean energy.

But climate change is getting worse fast with extreme weather already a potential economic and social threat multiplier and tipping points to Hothouse Earth close if not surpassed. And fossil fuel production and use and GHG emissions continue to rise with 'official' projections showing little decline until at least 2040.

In this context the new BC plan is another plan to fail. BC's plan to continue to try and reduce emissions while at the same time expanding fossil fuel production is now untenable; is not leadership considering what is at stake.

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  • Written by Robert Hunziker

Insect Armageddon: Saying Goodbye to Our Little Friends

The Deathly Insect Dilemma 

by Robert Hunziker - CounterPunch

December 7, 2018

Insect abundance is plummeting with wild abandon, worldwide!

Species evolve and go extinct as part of nature’s normal course over thousands and millions of years, but the current rate of devastation is off the charts and downright scary. Moreover, there is no quick and easy explanation for this sudden emergence of massive loss around the globe.

Something is dreadfully, horribly wrong. Beyond doubt, it is not normal for 50%-to-90% of a species to drop dead, but that is happening right now from Germany to Australia to Puerto Rico’s tropical rainforest. Scientists are rattled. The world is largely unaware of the implications because it is all so new. It goes without saying that the risk of loss of insects spells loss of ecosystems necessary for very important stuff, like food production.

Farmland birds that depend upon a diet of insects in Europe have disappeared by >50% in just three decades. French farmland partridge flocks have crashed by 80%. Nightingale abundance is down by almost 80%. Turtledoves are down nearly 80%.

In Denmark (1) owls, (2) Eurasian hobbies, and (3) Bee-eaters, which subsist on large insects like beetles and dragonflies, have abruptly disappeared. Poof, gone!



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Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, John Helmer, J.B. MacKinnon, Janine Bandcroft December 6th, 2018

This Week on GR

by C. L. Cook -

December 6, 2018

Little noticed in a Western press obsessed with personalizing geopolitics, last week that media's favourite bête noire, Vladimir Putin, the man who's bent over backwards conciliating NATO's relentless encirclement of and constant intriguing against his country, was superseded by Russia's military command.

And it is not in an accommodating mood; tersely stating,

"[A]nyone approaching Russian territory with hostile intent will be shot."

John Helmer is a long-time, Moscow-based journalist, author, and essayist whose website, Dances with Bears is the only Russian-based news bureau “independent of single national or commercial ties.”

Listen. Hear.

He’s also a former political science professor and his book titles include: ‘Uncovering Russia,’ ‘Urbanman: The Psychology of Urban Survival,’ ‘Bringing the War Home: The American Soldier in Vietnam and After,’ and ‘Drugs and Minority Oppression’, among others.

His latest article, ‘Force Talks - An Approach with Hostile Intent to the Russian Frontier, Aircraft, Ships at Sea, or Troops in the Field Will Be Shot' should serve as stark reminder of our precarious proximity to another global war.

John Helmer in the first half.

And Canadian journalist, author, and interactive documentarian J.B. MacKinnon's first book, 'The 100-Mile Diet', (co-written with Alisa Smith) was an international sensation and catalyst to a whole new "loca"-lexicon. The myriad award-winning, Vancouver-based UBC journalism prof's next, (national best-selling) book, 'The Once and Future World' examines Nature's past, parlous anthropocene present, and possible futures.

J.B. MacKinnon and The Once and Future World: Nature As It Was, As It Is, As It Could Be in the second half.

And; Victoria-based activist and CFUV Radio broadcaster at-large, Janine Bandcroft will be here at the bottom of the hour with the Left Coast Events Bulletin of some of the good things going on in and around our town in the coming week. But first, John Helmer and stalking Russia with hostile intent.


Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Thursday between 11-Noon Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, and on the internet at:  He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, Check out the GR blog at:
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  • Written by Press Release

World Class Demo at World Class Bridge: Extinction Rebellion Lands in Victoria

Sorry For The Delays Victoria -- We're Slowing Down Climate Change

by Howard Breen, Keith Cherry, Reuben Garbanzo - Rise n Resist!/Extinction Rebellion Vancouver Island

December 2, 2018

2018 has been a year of unprecedented wildfires, heat waves and accelerating polar melt; record hurricanes, mudslides and floods; mass marine life die-offs and the loss of biodiversity around the world.

Our day-to-day experience now confirms beyond any doubt that climate change is a full-blown global emergency.

All of this only demonstrates what the scientific community has been telling us for decades.

This year’s UN Report on Climate Change is the most dire yet, proclaiming that we have only a dozen years to avert runaway climate change. Since 1970, 60% of the planet’s non-human species have vanished.

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Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, James Steidle, Rick Habgood, Terry Dance-Bennink, Janine Bandcroft November 29th, 2018

This Week on GR

by C. L. Cook -

 November 29th, 2018

Climate change is often blamed for the record fire seasons experienced in BC, and across western North America these last few years, but is there more than climate causing the increasing devastation?

Stop the Spray BC has been warning about the effects of intense herbicide spraying throughout the province, and says the practice is dangerously exacerbating an already dire situation.

Listen. Hear.

James Steidle has worked in BC's forest industry as a treeplanter, millworker, and currently runs a woodworking company based in Prince George. Steidle and fellow forestry professional, Herb Martin started Stop the Spray BC to bring to an end wrong-headed government policies.

They ask, "As our planet continues to warm, biodiversity fades and forest fires grow worse, does it make sense to keep eliminating the trees with the highest biodiversity values, lowest probability of flammability, and best ability to sequester CO2 and reflect solar radiation from our forests?"

James Steidle and Herb Martin in the first half.

And; over the last month, Elections BC has administered the latest referendum on determining the future voting system for provincial elections. Ballots were mailed out, and the deadline was originally slated for tomorrow, November 30th. But, and it is a very big but; due to Canada Post labour actions, Elections BC has extended by one week the deadline to get ballots on electoral reform in.

Terry Dance-Bennink is an Eco and democracy activist, Pro Rep champion, defender of indigenous rights, United Church member, and Vice President of VotePRBC; and Rick Habgood is a democracy activist and producer of the ShawTV program, 'Voting for Change?'.

Rick Habgood and Terry Dance-Bennink on BC's chance for electoral change in the second half.

And; Victoria-based activist and CFUV Radio broadcaster at-large, Janine Bandcroft will be here at the bottom of the hour with the Left Coast Events Bulletin of some of the good things going on in and around our town in the coming week. But first, James Steidle and stopping the BC spray. 


Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Thursday between 11-Noon Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, and on the internet at:  He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, Check out the GR blog at:
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  • Written by Ingmar Lee

ATB: Scourge of the Salish Sea (and Inside Passage)

The Scourge of the American Petroleum Tankers That Prowl the British Columbia Coast

by Ingmar Lee - CounterPunch

November 27, 2018

November 26 marked a dreadful anniversary for the tanker-bedraggled British Columbia coast. One year ago in Hecate Strait, the American ATB “pusher tug” Jake Shearer broke apart from its fully loaded 10,000 deadweight-ton capacity petroleum barge and came within a stone’s throw of destroying the most magnificent, wild and precious region of the Pacific Ocean.

The Jake Shearer is a new-generation tugboat which is set up to lock into, and push its petroleum barge rather that towing it by cable in the conventional manner.

The bow of the tug is fitted with two giant hydraulic locking pins, while its tanker barge is fitted with a large notch cut out of its transom. Once mated together, these two vessels then become an “articulated tug/barge unit” or “ATB.” The tug pushes into the transom notch and the locking pins extend out sideways from the bow and engage into large racks fitted within the transom of the barge.

Then, mated together “doggy style” as it were, the tug/barge combo goes about its business.

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  • Written by James Petras

The Age of Plunder: US Wars and Mass Mobilizations

US Mass Mobilizations: Wars and Financial Plunder

by Prof. James Petras - Information Clearing House 

November 26, 2018


Over the past three decades, the US government has engaged in over a dozen wars, none of which have evoked popular celebrations either before, during or after.

Nor did the government succeed in securing popular support in its efforts to confront the economic crises of 2008–09.

This paper will begin by discussing the major wars of our time, namely the two US invasions of Iraq. We will proceed to analyze the nature of the popular response and the political consequences.

In the second section we will discuss the economic crises of 2008 -2009, the government bailout and popular response. We will conclude by focusing on the potential powerful changes inherent in mass popular movements.


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  • Written by Gary Leupp

Whiting Out Wrong: Cleansing the Murder of Jamal Khashoggi

Whitewashing Murder is Simply Wrong 

by Gary Leupp - CounterPunch

November 26, 2018  

Last Tuesday, within about an hour of his announcement on the murder of Jamal Khashoggi announcement, in the heat of the moment, I commented on the president’s acceptance of the Riyadh royals’ explanation of the Istanbul consulate incident. I called his statement “crude” and “buttheadedly amoral.”

I should have stated the obvious broader point: It was wrong.

Marxists have historically inveighed (appropriately) against capitalism, imperialism, semi-feudalism etc.—neutral moral categories—using such terms as “reactionary” and “opportunist” when desiring to add a moral edge. And certainly capitalist profit and imperialist hegemony factor into Trump’s response to the cold-blooded crime.

But sometimes it’s best to go back to the basics, and draw upon primordial human vocabulary. The murder of the dissident Saudi journalist was pure evil.

The prohibition on killing occurs in the earliest law codes and taboo lists. It’s understood to have limited application; rulers can use military force to maintain power and “preserve order.” But generally speaking humans concur that it’s wrong to kill someone. It’s wrong. This is basic. For those arriving from outer space it is Humanity 101. It is of course the Sixth Commandment in the Bible. It is fundamental to the contrat social of Rousseau.


Photo Source: POMED | CC BY 2.0


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  • Written by Tony Cartalucci

Poroshenko's "Remember the Maine" Moment?

Ukraine Provokes Russia to What End?

by Tony Cartalucci - NEO

November 26, 2018

Russia has seized three Ukrainian military vessels violating its territory near Russia’s newly completed Crimean Bridge. The incident is a clear provocation carried out by Kiev and possibly engineered by Kiev’s Western sponsors – particularly those in Washington and London.

Ukrainian military vessels are in fact permitted to pass from the Black Sea into the Sea of Azov provided they notify Russian authorities beforehand.

The Sea of Azov – according to a joint agreement signed by Kiev and Moscow in 2003 – is considered internal waters of both Ukraine and Russia.

With the completion of the Crimean Bridge connecting Russian Crimea to the rest of Russian territory across the Strait of Kerch, security measures have understandably increased.


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  • Written by Yves Engler

Canada Goes Both Ways on African Homophobia

The Canadian missionary connection to Tanzania’s homophobia

by Yves Engler 

November 21, 2018

Canadians should express their solidarity with Tanzanians facing politically inspired homophobia. But, we must also be suspicious of journalism that ignores Canadian complicity in the promotion of anti-gay ideology. Last weekend the Globe and Mail and CBC both reported on a Christian politician in Dar es Salaam who announced a scheme to track down and arrest gays. Titled “Tanzania’s homophobic crackdown casts a shadow on Canadian aid”, the Globe story insinuated that Ottawa should sever assistance to the country in protest while the CBC noted,


official anti-gay prejudice in Tanzania is causing Canadian officials to reassess this country’s relationship with one of Canada’s biggest aid recipients.”

While raising the subject of “Canadian aid”, the Globe and CBC both ignored how this country’s “assistance” to the region has, in fact, fostered the social conservatism that the stories bemoan.

For example, while the Stephen Harper Conservative government was in power international aid funding for religious NGOs increased substantially.


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