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Feb. 5: Letters to the editor Add to ...

Quebec's climate strategy

I'd have more sympathy for Quebec Premier Jean Charest's noble position on climate change if his province weren't destroying the lungs and lives of so many people in developing countries by exporting asbestos to them ( As Charest Heats Up Battle Over Climate Change, Tories Stand To Lose In Quebec - Feb. 4).

Dan Turner, Ottawa

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Federal Environment Minister Jim Prentice is right; environmental regulations in Quebec are going to put Canada at a competitive disadvantage. Come to think of it, we should cut all our emissions regulations to gain a competitive advantage. Then we should gut our labour laws and get rid of minimum-wage controls.

Our model for success has been wrong all along. We shouldn't mimic the U.S., we should be trying to achieve England at the start of the Industrial Revolution. That would guarantee the competitive advantage the Conservatives have been seeking for us - for our own good, of course.

John Gzowski, Toronto

Yielding the rights of way

Re Ignoring Supreme Court Khadr's Ruling, Ottawa Won't Request Repatriation (Feb. 4): Good!

Claude Gannon, Markham, Ont.

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The Harper government's contempt for the Supreme Court's ruling in the Omar Khadr case is more proof the court was wrong to defer to the government. The rule of law requires that a government exercise its discretionary power in a way that complies with the Charter. When a prime minister abuses that power, Canadians deserve to have courts that will stop him, instead of meekly standing aside.

Derek Smith, Toronto

The March (break) of time

Twenty years ago, I abandoned a family vacation because my boss guilted me into it. From the moment my husband and daughters boarded the plane, to this day, I've regretted that decision. I never had to be reminded again that family comes first.

Now, shortly after our PM declared women and children first, he's putting our parliamentarians in the same position I was in - and for no other reason than political gamesmanship ( Harper Asks MPs To Give Up March Break - Feb. 4).

It reveals, yet again, his true nature.

Elizabeth Clarke, Toronto

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Anger over prorogation, which was done to avoid the detainee enquiry, cannot be assuaged by Stephen Harper's recalibration of the parliamentary calendar to suit his whim.

Jeannie Hayley, North Vancouver

Health care's many judges

Whether or not one believes Danny Williams should be going to the U.S. for medical treatment, we need to be careful not to take every case of this kind as a reflection on our health-care system ( Health Care And The Premier - letters, Feb. 4). A health-care system should be judged not on the basis of individual cases, but on the large body of research on mortality rates, recovery times and wait times for all members of a country's population. On these measures, the Canadian system does well.

Samuel Clark, London, Ont.

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Contrary to your views ( Health Care And The Public's Trust - editorial, Feb. 3), as a voter from Newfoundland and Labrador I don't recall placing any restrictions, as part of the electoral process, on Danny Williams in terms of where he can get medical services.

You report (Access To Angioplasty Is An Hour Away For Most Canadians - Life, Feb. 3) that 80 per cent of U.S. citizens can get primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) within an hour of a heart attack, while just 64 per cent of Canadians would get the same service; 15.8 per cent of New Brunswickers and 72.6 per cent of Ontarians can get a PCI within the 90-minute prescribed limit. Perhaps your editorial should focus on the real problem - the health-care system in Canada is not working as well as it should.

Ken Browne, Placentia, Nfld.

Life and joy with an autistic child

Along with hysteria around vaccines and other possible "causes" of autism, we need to address the general hysteria around what it means having a child with autism. Unfortunately, Margaret Wente's column ( Autism, Vaccines And Fear - Feb. 4) fuels that hysteria by stating, "Life with an autistic child is unrelentingly hard." As the mother of one autistic child and two "neuro-typical" (non-autistic) children, I can state that life with an autistic child is not unrelentingly hard. My autistic child is no more challenging than my other two children. Frankly, he's often the most easygoing of the three.

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