E. coli, not explained
All those slick TV ads promoting the Harper government’s Economic Action Plan must have cost millions to tells us what a great job they’re doing with our economy and protecting our environment.
When it came to making Canadians aware of E. coli in beef products originating from a packing plant in Alberta, we didn’t get any such clarity as to what was going on (XL Takes Responsibility For Beef – Oct. 5). It took weeks to even make an announcement of the fact we had a problem; the Harper government seemed more concerned about making certain Canadians didn’t see them in a bad light on this matter.
Rather than spending tax money letting Canadians know our food supply was not safe, they probably will spend it telling us what a fantastic job the government is doing protecting us from tainted food.
It seems to be their style.
Paul Luoto, St. Thomas, Ont.
Although I understand the reasoning behind the Supreme Court ruling (HIV Disclosure Can Be Waived Under Certain Conditions: Top Court – online, Oct. 5), it troubles me that many people still share so little of themselves before sharing a bed.
Being HIV-positive strikes me as a rather important piece of information to withhold from one’s partner, as would be information about any other sexually transmissible disease.
David Lieber, Montreal
Wagner and Wagner
Your editorial Harper V. Harper (Oct. 4) criticized the Prime Minister for rushing the parliamentary committee hearing on Mr. Justice Richard Wagner.
Stephen Harper isn’t interested in a truly transparent and accountable appointments procedure. The list of candidates presented to the all-party committee of the House of Commons was prepared in the Justice Minister’s office with little, if any, input (much less decisional input) from outside constituents, such as the provincial ministers of justice, the legal profession or Canadian law schools.
Just as significant, the all-party committee that presented Mr. Harper with a short list of candidates had a majority of Conservative MPs. It’s safe to assume they knew who the government’s preferred candidate was.
It is surely also no accident that Judge Wagner was elevated to the Quebec Court of Appeal only about a year ago, presumably because the government saw him as a promising candidate for appointment to the Supreme Court.
Jacob S. Ziegel, professor of law emeritus, University of Toronto
Your articles often describe senator Claude Wagner, father of new Supreme Court justice Richard Wagner, as a “Conservative Party stalwart” (New Judge Pitches His Street Smarts – Oct. 5). That is accurate for his second political career. In his first career, he was minister of justice in the Lesage Liberal government in Quebec.
He is especially remembered for authorizing the police to forcibly attack demonstrators protesting against the royal visit to the Quebec Legislative Assembly: In Quebec, Oct. 10, 1964, is remembered as le samedi de la matraque – the Saturday of the truncheons. That day probably increased the ranks of both separatists and republicans, and is one reason why subsequent visits by the Queen to Quebec are infrequent and brief.
Ramsay Cook, historian, Toronto
No pipeline. Period
Stephen Harper and premiers Christy Clark and Alison Redford just don’t get it. Jeffrey Simpson does. The issue, for once, is not money, but simply that most of the B.C. public and the first nations do not want the increased risks to our incredible, irreplaceable land and marine environment that this project and its increased tanker traffic would bring.
Charles Simpson, Victoria
Arunachalam Muruganantham’s entrepreneurial spirit is admirable, to say the least (The Absorbing Tale Of One Man’s Quest For Better Feminine Hygiene – Oct. 4). Despite major setbacks (his wife left him, he was ridiculed by peers and many thought he was insane), he succeeded. Most admirable is that he eschewed personal profit for the greater good of his community by encouraging local women to start the Mother Care manufacturing facility in Tamil Nadu.
This story is a true testament to the model of social entrepreneurship.
Rachel Sixt, Waterloo, Ont.
What a terrific story by Stephanie Nolen about ingenuity and persistence. A man’s quest for a better sanitary napkin for his wife reminds us that necessity can be the father of invention.
Jayne Watson, Ottawa
While some will celebrate the 25-year-old free-trade agreement (Brian Mulroney’s Lasting Legacy – editorial, Oct. 4), others, like a local employee in one of our plants, tells the story of buying a $39.95 set of work boots at Wal-Mart in Massena, N.Y., that would have cost him $59.95 for an identical pair at Wal-Mart in Cornwall.
That’s free trade?
David Enns, Cornwall, Ont.
1962: plus ça change
Earlier this week I had occasion to listen to a speech given by president John F. Kennedy in 1962. The primary subjects of that speech? Health-care issues, education, deficit spending (budgets), and concerns for the middle class.
Justin Trudeau, speaking in Mississauga on Thursday, when asked about the primary concerns facing the nation, named middle-class improvements, health-care problems, deficit spending and, of course, education.
This week’s U.S. presidential debate, which focused on domestic issues, got into deficit spending and budgets, more assistance for the middle class, improving health care and education.
By my observation, the more things change, the more they stay the same! At least since 1962.
Leonard H. Goodman, Toronto
Name that … child
So Marissa Mayer, the CEO of Yahoo, is turning to crowdsourcing to come up with a name for her baby boy (Yahoo CEO’s Parenting Choices Under Fire (Again) – online, Oct. 5). That’s not so unusual; we’ve always been told it takes a village to raise a child. It’s too bad, however, that she didn’t have a girl. She could have called her Dorothy – nickname, Dot.com.
Teresa Snelgrove, Shanty Bay, Ont.