Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 30/12/2011 (2003 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
I would like to tell you about my child. She is a bright, kindhearted girl working as seasonal help at a large national home store to help pay her way through her first year at university. This is not her first job; she has worked since she was 16 years old.
These last couple of weeks have been hard on her. Not physically hard, but an emotional drain. She has been yelled at, bullied and demeaned by customers purchasing or returning items on what is supposed to be the holiday that epitomizes love, the spirit of giving and peace on earth.
As she handles the customers with smiles, patience, and kindness, some become rude and demanding. It is laughable what some of them feel is their right and how they act when their demands cannot be met.
The more she smiles and tries to help, the more emboldened some get. Is it any wonder that some salespeople come off as surly?
Can everyone just take a moment to reflect on what this season is really about?
There are some good people out there, working in positions serving the public, with patience, helpfulness, kindness and respect. They deserve the same back. I applaud them this holiday season and truly mean it when I wish them a Merry Christmas and a warm, happy New Year.
East St. Paul
Re: A talk with the premier (Dec. 28). I'm sure it's nice to talk with the premier, but your reporters did not ask a single question about the ongoing problems in Winnipeg and the capital region that result from over a decade of this government failing to legislate any reforms on land use, environmental concerns (e.g. sewage) or the taxation in these communities.
There were no questions about urban sprawl, the cancer of the city and a problem the provincial government has exacerbated with its pet project, Waverley West. There was not a question about the underfunding of the city or, for example, the hypocrisy of dumping the responsibility of Winnipeg's waste-water upgrade on city taxpayers after a decade of the province underfunding, and virtually ignoring, this provincial environmental responsibility.
But perhaps your reporters are so used to the bafflegab coming from politicians, e.g. the argument for Waverley West being an impending population boom, while at the same time dooming Winnipeg to diesel-powered buses under the guise of rapid transit because we do not have the population to warrant investing in LRT.
Your reporters are not the only ones who expect nothing of substance from a talk with the premier.
Greg Selinger has earned the right to govern Manitoba for another term. Winning gives him some stature and he can now get out from under the coattails of the former premier, Gary Doer. He should govern Manitoba for everyone, not for just a select few who cater to American environmental opinion. He should have the interest of all Manitobans in the forefront of his government's decisions with regard to cost and reliability.
This means he should not overrun the Manitoba Hydro Act and the board of that corporation. He should accept the recommendation of the Hydro board, based on the excellent judgment of the engineers who work for that organization. This will provide the lowest cost and most reliable transmission system for our northern power.
Isn't it time Selinger showed us that he can do what is best for the citizens of the province that he was elected to govern?
LEONARD A. BATEMAN
Former Manitoba Hydro CEO
Re: Liberal politicking, Letters, Dec. 26. Don Hermiston states that Bob Rae "was a Liberal MP in a government that had a majority for 13 years."
The current interim leader of the Liberal party has been an NDP MP, an NDP MPP and an NPD premier, but he was never a Liberal MP in a federal Liberal government, majority or minority.
Choosing caribou sides
In Chomiak invites public input on protecting caribou, (Dec. 21), Manitoba Conservation Minister Dave Chomiak expresses concern about woodland caribou populations in eastern Manitoba. He is quoted as saying that "the Owl-Flintstone and Atikaki-Berens populations are particularly vulnerable."
Manitoba Hydro's environmental impact statement for its Bipole III project reveals that the proposed west-side transmission line passes through more than 600 kilometres of the Boreal Woodland Caribou Management Zone created by Chomiak's department.
The impact statement acknowledges that west-side populations of this threatened species are found in the Wapisu range near Thompson, the Reed Lake range east of Flin Flon, the Wabowden range northeast of The Pas and the bog south of The Pas. A west-side Bipole III would pass through all four of these ranges.
The NDP claimed that an east-side Bipole III would disrupt the east-side habitat of the woodland caribou. Yet Chomiak conveniently ignores any mention of the same species on the west side because the NDP wants to build Bipole III through that area.
Why is Mia Rabson perpetuating the myth that Canada took a right turn in the last federal election (Our country took right turn in May 2 vote, Dec. 27).
Less than a quarter of eligible voters voted for the Conservatives, but they won because of Canada's old-fashioned and undemocratic electoral system.
When a party can get an absolute majority in the Commons with so few votes, it shows that most Canadians wasted their time voting, and more and more of them are realizing this with each successive election.
Canada needs a modern democratic electoral system, where every vote counts, not more propaganda from newspaper columnists justifying the current undemocratic one.