It is an interesting time for those in the U.S. who are searching for a ways to disempower Mr. Trump and his Republican sheep before the air and water are completely fouled, or we all go up in a mushroom cloud. We are fortunate that the ongoing morphing of journalism into entertainment had not quite […]



I thought I had taught my last class in basic criminal law some time ago. But public tolerance of the ongoing practice of police killing unarmed black men with impunity suggests that an explanation of self-defense in lay terms is badly needed. Self-defense is an important component of how civilized societies respond to […]

Now Where Did I Put That Fallout Shelter Blueprint?

Dear Virtual Editor,

It has been fun over the years to watch Doctor Strangelove, or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb. Still a great movie, but not fun anymore. Today, the danger of annihilation is more real than it has ever been. Scientists have moved the doomsday clock to two […]

Canada’s Declaration of Independence?


Dear Virtual Editor,

I am sure you have noticed that I have not continued my country-by-country explanation of why the West cannot “win” in the Middle East. The main reason is the completion of a bigger part of the effort to save civilians. My book, Canada: The Case For Staying Out of Other People’s […]

Saving Civilians: Why the West Cannot “Win” in the Middle East, Part II Afghanistan

Dear Virtual Editor,

The usual reminder that I seek to lower the number of dead and displaced civilians by urging western powers—the only ones purporting to act in my name— to cease military action and devote their massive resources to humanitarian work. Country by country, I am arguing the case that the West cannot […]

The Test for a Bigotry Exemption under State “Religious Freedom” Statutes

Dear Virtual Editor,

Recall that I promised, with only a few exceptions, to devote 2016 to an effort to reduce the toll of war on civilians. Today is one of those few exceptions. Fear not, the story of why the U.S. cannot “win” in the Middle East will continue anon. But the recent spate of […]

Saving Civilians:  Why the West Cannot “Win” in the Middle East, Part I Iraq

Dear Virtual Editor,

A reminder that the purpose of these posts is to advocate for reducing civilian casualties in war. An important means of achieving that is for Western nations to end military action in the Middle East and devote their considerable resources to humanitarian efforts. The US, of course, would not end civilian casualties. […]

Sons of….

Sons of the thief, sons of the saint Who is the child with no complaint Sons of the great or sons unknown All were children like your own The same sweet smiles, the same sad tears The cries at night, the nightmare fears Sons of the great or sons unknown All were […]

2016: Resolve to End the War on Civilians

Dear Virtual Editor,

Fair notice to readers: For the year 2016, with only occasional digressions, this space will be devoted to raising awareness about the generally accepted practice of killing and displacing civilians— particularly in war, particularly in the Middle East and Afghanistan, and particularly by western nations and their allies. Fake News Service (FNS) […]

Happy New Year News?

Dear Virtual Editor:

As we approach the New Year, an important story is developing. Fake New Service (FNS) has learned that secret negotiations are underway that could soon end the US division over guns. An intrepid FNS investigative reporter has incomplete but stunning information about the progress of the talks. Here is the very […]

Refugee Interview Leaked!

Dear Virtual Editor:

MORE BREAKING NEWS! Fake News Service (FNS) has come into possession of an audio recording that appears to be a portion of the vetting interview of a Syrian refugee claimant. The quality is poor and the only audible portion is the voice of the U.S. interrogator. FNS cannot verify its authenticity, […]

West to Consider Meeting ISIS Demands?

Dear Virtual Editor:

OK. I am back. I still know why Jon Stewart left the Daily Show and there is certainly not much good news lately. But we all have a duty to continue, in our own small way, the fake news legacy he bequeathed us.


(FNS Worldwide) West to Consider Meeting […]


Dear Virtual Editor,

I know now why Jon Stewart left the Daily Show. He came to the same place at which I have now arrived. Stewart was at the peak of a brilliant career. He was making big money. At a time when news had become entertainment, he turned entertainment into the most reliable source […]

Stephen Harper’s Canada IV: “Never Been Ready”

As Canadians begin to see that the Tory’s last line of defence—“Good Stewards of the Economy”— is coming apart, maybe it is time to examine another subject. It is one that should earn the government some sort of recognition for Most Laughable Exercise in Hypocrisy. The subject is the exercise of good judgment in appointing […]

Stephen Harper’s Canada III: “We Will Tell You What You Need to Know”

Dear Virtual Editor,

The hits just keep on coming in Stephen Harper’s Canada. In the continuing effort to destroy Canada’s international reputation, the government has just joined the U.S. to block a proposed UN conference on nuclear disarmament in the Middle East. This was done at the insistence of Israel and is yet another […]

Stephen Harper’s Canada II:  Contempt for International Law, Indifference to Civilian Deaths, and Destruction of a Peacekeeping Heritage

Dear Virtual Editor,

This is the second post in my plea to Canadians to oust the current government. I am aware that the state of Canada’s place in the world is not the primary concern of voters. But when the policies of one government are so destructive of what Canada was, and could be, it […]

Stephen Harper’s Vision for Canadians: Ignorant and Terrified

Dear Virtual Editor,

With apologies to American readers, the next few posts will deal with a crisis in Canada. I hope some Americans readers may find them interesting as well. Americans generally are not fountains of knowledge about their northern neighbour. In these posts, however, they will recognize, from painful experience, much of what is […]

Dean of Humanities

Dear Virtual Editor,

I don’t usually write to you about sports. I think the only post remotely related to sports so far mentions the Calgary chuckwagon races, and that is a bit of stretch. But when a giant humanitarian who happens to be a sports figure passes from the scene, attention should be paid.

Dean […]

Mother Earth, Native American Wisdom, and Our Grandchildren

Dear Virtual Editor,

I am writing on a very serious matter today, so I especially want to thank the Republican party for providing some much needed comic relief before I started. In the official response to the State of the Union Address, new Iowa Senator Joni Ernst was a hoot! After she […]

What Part of: “Violence Doesn’t Work”
Do You Not Understand?

Dear Virtual Editor:

I regret to inform you that I must restate many of the arguments made in to “How Not to Make a Country Safer” (See, December 7th, 2014) Delete Zehaf-Bibeau and Couture Rouleau. Add Cherif and Said Kouachi. Delete Ottawa. Add Paris. Add more civilian victims in Paris and Syria.

I recently watched […]