I did the Greg Beatty thing – do the post in advance, — and maybe that wasn’t the right idea because a lot of stuff happened overnight.

1 IF THE SECOND WORLD WAR WAS BEING FOUGHT TODAY AMERICA WOULD PROBABLY BE JOINING THE AXIS Bahrain: We’ll shoot anybody who doesn’t pledge allegiance to our King. The United States: Naughty, naughty. (The Independent)

2 SO THAT EXPLAINS SMALL DEAD ANIMALS’ COMMENTS SECTION The US military is developing software that will let it secretly manipulate social media using fake online personas designed to influence internet conversations and spread pro-American propaganda. (The Guardian)

3 WHAT? THEY COULD HAVE SAID THE CANADIANS DID IT Two years ago, MGM announced plans for a (totally unnecessary) remake of the American hard-right’s favourite movie, Red Dawn. Originally, the new bad guys invading the U.S. were supposed to be the Chinese. But since people in China go to movies, the new bad guys are North Koreans. I guess the Chinese have already won … (Globe and Mail)

4 WELL, CAMILLA GETS A GOVERNMENT JET, SO … 17 per cent of Britons think pigs can fly, or at least think there’s such a thing as pork wings (Daily Telegraphy via Vancouver Sun).

5 THE BIG HEAD SPEAKS A Japanese emperor addressed the nation for the first time since the atomic bomb attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. (NHK). It’s not as if he had any good news … (Al Jazeera) The United States has just expanded its evacuation zone around the stricken power plants from 50 miles to ‘just get on the first flight out if you value your life’ (USA Today via FARK)

6 THEY BELIEVE IN LAW AND ORDER WHEN IT’S ONLY THEIR LAWS IN ORDER A senior member of Prime Minister Harper’s staff faces allegations of influence peddling. (Globe and Mail) UPDATE So Harper hires as his right hand man in the PMO some guy who did time in jail and was stripped of his law society accreditation for a few years in the 1980s for defrauding his clients? (Calgary Herald) And it’s the same guy who’s at the center of this controversy? Harper must be scraping the bottom of the barrel for talent if he has to hire people to scuzzy for the lawyers …

MUSICAL INTERLUDE Usually I have little use for bands of the Dropkick Murphy’s ilk – running around with a celtic swagger seems little more than a market decision that at least some faux-Irish pub will book your band one day a year, and if you get the crowd really, really drunk, someone will mistake you for The Pogues. But there’s one redeeming factor in this video … BOBBY ORR!