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Heart-stopping delay

Re: Waiting and waiting for surgery (July 8). On April 22 of this year, while travelling in Italy, I suffered a heart attack. Like James Gandolfini, I am 51 years old. Unlike him, I survived my ordeal.

The surgeon in Italy preformed an angioplasty and inserted a stent into one of my blocked arteries and I was in the hospital in Mestre for eight days. I was instructed to see a cardiologist as soon as possible on my return to Canada for followup, given I have a blockage in another artery that needs attention.

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My family GP referred me to a cardiologist on May 2. After not hearing from the cardiologist's office on May 17, I thought it wise to call them. Upon doing so I was informed that, yes, they had received my request for a consult but that they had only just received it on May 2 and that I would be notified by mail as to when my initial appointment would be scheduled.

On July 5 I finally received my letter in the mail. My appointment date is scheduled for Dec. 9. I was stunned. In bold letters in the letter it states that this is a "consultation appointment only."

Don't get me wrong. I am being medicated efficiently by my GP and my heart will only have to beat another 835,000 times before my initial appointment with a cardiologist in Canada. Somehow I think the surgeon in Italy had a little different timeline in mind when he stated "as soon as possible."




Catering to hysteria

Instead of a front-page photo (July 8) relating to malathion fogging, why not instead a picture of happy Winnipeggers rejoicing in their ability to enjoy their property free from the scourge of mosquitoes?

But your newspaper decides to cater to the anti-chemical hysteria that has so masterfully been prosecuted by the junk-science fuelled, multi-billion-dollar enviro-scare industry.

"Protect the children" is the most common refrain. Well, we have young children and we salute the City of Winnipeg fogging program, wishing on our children the benefits of the great outdoors rather than worrying about the over-hyped risks of malathion fogging.

Those who are concerned about fogging should learn some basic toxicology. Rule No. 1 is that the dose makes the poison. Just because the chemical is present doesn't mean it's a hazard.




We have a cottage at Grand Beach. We use an electronic mosquito trap, which catches at least 1,000 mosquitoes each day.

If most people in Winnipeg had a mosquito trap, there would be no need to spray the bugs and maybe save some good critters from dying.


Surrey, B.C.


Taking partisan swipe

Re: Our archival yearbooks should stay in our province (July 4). One could care less about Sinclair's reminiscences about his past and his wife's attachment to her high school yearbook.

Moreover, his comment that we should all feel ashamed bookseller Burton Lysecki has to go to another province to sell his back stock of Manitoba high school yearbooks sounds like a partisan swipe at the provincial government and its funding of the University of Winnipeg, University of Manitoba, the Winnipeg Public Library and the provincial archives.

If Lysecki is sincere about wanting these Manitoba high school yearbooks to stay in Winnipeg, why doesn't he simply donate them to a university or organization of his choice? Perhaps he might even get a tax receipt for his troubles.




Food-labelling clarity

The Free Press has done a great service to shoppers by publishing Shamona Harnett's July 8 article, Demystifying the dairy aisle.

Unfortunately, labels on some other products are equally confusing, since they don't list whether genetically modified grains or other GM ingredients are included.

Citizens of California found such GM labels banned when chemical companies figured out the product would not be sought if people knew GM items were included.

It would help shoppers in Manitoba if they knew GM items were or were not used in food products here. Labels should tell us about the nature of the items in our food, especially since, as with Thalidomide, we may not learn until years later of the potential for unhealthy outcomes.




Valuing the underdog

Re: Puppy love (July 9). No breed of dog can make you more attractive than a rescued mutt.

Owning a mutt demonstrates a lack of pretension, that you have a big heart, that you will stick up for the underdog and that you value what's on the inside.




Majority approves of pipeline

The July 5 article reprinted from the Chicago Tribune, It's time to approve Keystone pipeline, could also have mentioned the most recent surveys have revealed 74 per cent of Canadians and 68 per cent per cent of Americans favour the pipeline's construction.

Opponents continue to use the argument that it will increase carbon emissions, yet the International Energy Agency praises the U.S. for cutting such emissions more than any other country since 2006.

Environmentalists maintain Keystone will have nothing but deleterious effects on migratory wildfowl but don't seem particularly concerned by the fact the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service claims windmills kill 33,000 birds annually.

As for those who are supposedly so worried about the safety records of pipelines in general, they need to consider the July 6 explosions in Lac-Mégantic, Que., to remember that accidents involving petroleum-product transport by rail and road are three times as likely to occur as by pipeline.




Limp-wristed drivers

Regarding Ernie Peters' July 8 letter, I didn't realize Winnipeg car dealerships were selling vehicles without turn-signal lights.

I thought it was an epidemic of broken left wrists in the city.



Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition July 10, 2013 A8

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