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Boeing: Looking back
Re Boeing Fires CEO Over 737 Max Jet Crisis (Report on Business, Dec. 24): Having Boeing’s CEO resign, presumably as the airplane maker’s proverbial sacrificial lamb nine months after its jets were grounded, seems insufficient.
When I read about such a seriously questionable case of business negligence, I picture, albeit a bit cynically, CEOs shrugging their shoulders and saying their job is to protect shareholders’ bottom-line interests. Meanwhile, the shareholders, also shrugging their shoulders, say they just collect the dividends – the CEOs are the ones to make the moral and ethical decisions.
Frank Sterle Jr. White Rock, B.C.
I am neither an aircraft engineer nor a pilot. But having followed the Boeing story this year, I would love to learn why it made sense in the first place to take a remarkably resilient airplane and add larger and heavier engines, which then produced a front-heavy airplane. Then Boeing tries to correct the imbalance through autopilot software, so that pilots qualified for older 737s can fly it safely. To this rank amateur, this seems like bad engineering and design from conception.
Rather, I would have thought that designing a new airframe for the more efficient engines would have been the responsible solution. If there was no good engineering rationale for the decision to retain the original design, then one has to conclude it was a purely expedient one to compete against the Airbus A320neo.
Expediency as a prime driver for airplane design does not serve the flying public, as this case seems to amply demonstrate.
Manuel Mertin Calgary
Re The Collective Bargaining Process Is Functioning Exactly As Intended (Report on Business, Dec. 24): As a retired union organizer, I applaud the labour movement’s gains noted by Canadian Labour Congress President Hassan Yussuff. No wonder Statistics Canada records about one million more workers covered by collective agreements compared to 20 years ago.
Tom Baker Burlington, Ont.
Living with Bill 21
Re For These Women, Quebec’s Bill 21 Changes Everything (Folio, Dec. 21): The Globe interviewed six Muslim women in Quebec who insist on wearing the hijab, but nothing from Muslim women who are more flexible. Nothing from the majority of Quebeckers who agree with Bill 21. And nothing from a cross-section of the rest of Canada, to see where they stand.
Jean-Marie Brideau Moncton
If it is not overturned, Bill 21 may have far-reaching consequences. Not the least of these is that Quebec may lose some of its best citizens – articulate, well-educated young people who reflect values that are truly Canadian.
Natalie Hryciuk Surrey, B.C.
As lawyer Nour Farhat says, “I used to see myself as a complete Québécoise.” As the saying goes, plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose. Roll back to 1977 and Bill 101 after the election of the Parti Québécois. Many of us, born and raised in Quebec, had the same experience back then.
For my peer group, being Jewish and anglophone in Quebec felt intolerable. Many of us left for other parts of Canada or the world. We left reluctantly and sadly, feeling, as Ms. Farhat says, that we had the mistaken impression that we were “complete Québécoise.” It was repeatedly pointed out in very cruel ways that we were not.
I am disheartened at Bill 21 and am grieving for what today’s Muslim women and others in Quebec are experiencing. How sad for Quebec. How sad for Canada. How sad for all of us.
Ellen Katz Toronto
The church of Trump
Re If Trump Loses The Christian Right, He’s Done (Dec. 23): From 2009 until 2017, I attended a church that many label “evangelical.” While the teaching was primarily traditional, it avoided LGBTQ issues and abortion, neither condemning nor supporting. It wasn’t until after his first year as President that I started to hear rumblings of the greatness of Donald Trump.
There was the discussion of his pro-life views and how refreshing they were. Then came the coffee conversations about how the LGBTQ community was influencing the lives of many and how gender conversion was on the rise.
As an avid reader, I had come to learn much about this man they so admired: that pro-life to him meant enjoying a golf game and not a stand on anti-abortion, that he had viciously condemned Muslims, that guns are an inherent right to be protected at any cost and that the wicked LGBTQ community was no better than Satan. I found myself alone in defending the causes that had always been part of my DNA, and was shaken by the reaction I received by the many well-educated people around me.
I left this church and with it the beliefs of much of its congregation. How could my fellow Christians be so blind to the immoral behaviour of the man who purports to be the leader of the free world? I cannot help but wonder how after following its teachings, they have missed the most important principles in the Bible – those of tolerance and love for one’s fellow man.
Carol Victor Burlington, Ont.
Re We Are Drowning In Art (Arts, Dec. 21): Every mode of culture has had its glory days and now its television’s turn. Let’s enjoy it while it’s here and while it lasts. Pining for the good old days of The Sopranos, Succession and Ozark will come soon enough.
Ken Grennan Vancouver
And I quote
Re Globe Arts 2019: Our Favourite Cultural Moments (Arts, Dec. 21): Inspiteoftheglowingreviewsofyourcriticsiwillnotbereadingnormalpeoplereproductionorlampedusabecauseforsomeunrevealedreasonlazinessperhapstheauthorseschewtheuseofquotationmarksalongestablishedconventionsofenglishliteraturethatallowreaderstofollowthenarrativewitheasesorry
Tim Schobert Ottawa
Re Is Winter An Endangered Season? Discuss (Opinion, Dec. 21): Yes, Virginia, you can hear snow falling.
Contributor Giles Whittell says he was "brought up short by the idea – scientifically supported? – that if you’re lucky, you can hear snow falling.” Much harder in a city with the constant drone of traffic. But away from highways, and when the wind has stopped, you can hear the flakes as they land on fence posts, bushes and gravestones. Remember poet Robert Frost’s line: “The only other sound’s the sweep/Of easy wind and downy flake.”
As a sound editor on more than 100 films and TV shows from Vikings to Cardinal to Alias Grace, the prettiest sound I have heard was past midnight during the ice storm in December, 2013. Every branch of the trees on our Toronto street was coated. As they bent with the weight of the ice, they creaked and tinkled like natural wind chimes.
Jane Tattersall Toronto
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