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Princess Anne, right, talks to NATO delegates Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson, during a reception at Buckingham Palace, in London, on Dec. 3, 2019.

Yui Mok/The Associated Press

Letters to the Editor should be exclusive to The Globe and Mail. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. Try to keep letters to fewer than 150 words. Letters may be edited for length and clarity. To submit a letter by e-mail, click here: letters@globeandmail.com

Carbon solutions

Re A Carbon Tax Isn’t The Only Tool In The Box (Editorial, Dec. 4): As an architect of Ontario’s coal phase-out, adviser to the Ecofiscal Commission and former director of the Ontario Power Authority through the gas-plant political scandals, I concur with The Globe and Mail’s assessment of how the electricity sector has handled climate change.

However, I found conclusions about the auto sector to be muddled. The problem of unregulated SUVs and pickup trucks should be a reinforcement of the importance of vehicle-emission regulations, not an argument against them. To me, the most egregious failure of North American government policy on climate change has been the exemption of these larger vehicles from fuel-efficiency standards.

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Bruce Lourie Toronto


Another solution for climate change is to make it easier for Canadians to lower their individual carbon footprint. I recently installed a solar-panel system using the net-metering plan available in Canada. The federal government made this possible, but seems to have done nothing to make it easy. Ditto for the provinces and municipalities.

I found little clarity on rules and implementation. The only practical solution was to hire a firm to complete the installation. Of course, this cost double what it would for a DIY project. If the rules could be more clear, it’s possible many more people would take on the challenge.

Bruce Henry Waterloo, Ont.

Pop quiz

Re Against All Odds, Trans Mountain’s Expansion Is Being Built (Dec. 4): So “Kinder Morgan first applied to twin the existing Trans Mountain line exactly six years ago.” Tell me again: Who was prime minister exactly six years ago?

Joy Ruttan Gatineau

Private vs. Public, Part 3

Re Private Vs. Public, Part 2 (Letters, Dec. 3): A letter writer paid thousands of dollars to avoid the public health-care queue and have his knee surgery done privately. There seems to be many other Canadians willing and able to do the same.

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Coincidentally, there are many orthopedic surgeons who seem to have a lot of idle time when they could be performing that same operation. Once the public system has performed its mandated number of procedures for a given period, why not let private payers pay the public system and have the profit benefit us all?

Louis Desjardins Belleville, Ont.


I, too, have paid for an operation of my spinal stenosis at a private B.C. clinic. It gave me my life back while the Alberta system would have put me through a two-year wait.

It seems the problem is not a lack of surgeons, but a lack of operating facilities. The end result I’ve seen is that many doctors in Alberta do their duty in those few available slots, then work the rest of the time in British Columbia. Why not open some clinics here?

John Cihal Calgary


I was diagnosed with spinal stenosis several months ago. My doctor tried to book a follow-up MRI and neurosurgical consultation for several months. The response was a wait between one and five years, and the wait for an MRI was four months.

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So we booked an appointment with a neurosurgeon in Buffalo, and I was seen within two weeks. The MRI was carried out within 48 hours. When I inquired if this facility provided MRIs for many Canadians, I was told that they served about 150 of us every week.

I am horrified and disappointed by the performance of our public health-care system.

Joy Rogers Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ont.

Sea to sea to sea

Re Premiers Need The Money Because They Run The Country (Dec. 3): Not many of his provincial counterparts looked very happy about Doug Ford’s dubious gift of Toronto Maple Leafs jerseys. His gesture might have been better received if he had instead given out Toronto Raptors jerseys – a symbol of a winning team with great spirit that united the country last spring.

However, this east-coaster felt downheartened by the sight of 12 men and one woman leading the provinces. Gender imbalance, indeed.

A. E. Campbell St. John’s

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Re It Grows On Trees? (Letters, Dec. 3): A letter writer asks: “So where is this magical money to come from?“ The short answer: the same place all other government borrowing comes from.

Canada’s national debt is nearly $700-billion, while Ontario’s debt is around $350-billion. Perhaps those who arrange these loans should be awarded the Order of Canada for services to their fellow Canadians.

Richard Seymour Brechin, Ont.

The view from Malta

Re How The Family Of A Murdered Maltese Journalist Fought For Justice (Dec. 2): After retirement, I lived in Malta for 13 years and witnessed the political tribalism and corruption in this small state. One of my neighbours, an old Labour politician, lost his daughter decades ago to a Christmas mail bomb meant for him.

Soon after the assassination of investigative reporter Daphne Caruana Galizia, it seemed like everyone in Malta knew who was behind the crime; that is the nature of a small country. But the police would not arrest the hit men until they were shamed into doing so.

In Canada, we live next to a much larger country that is also currently characterized by tribal politics, government corruption and pork barrelling and threats to the free press. Like many, I dread the prospect of political assassinations there.

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J. David Murphy Barrie, Ont.

Okay, okay

Re The ‘OK Boomer’ Revolution Will Not Be Televised (Nov. 30): When the younger generation picks a fight with the people who brought them world peace, socialized health care, eradication of numerous diseases, public education, space travel, civil rights and the rule of law, not to mention mobile phones and the Beatles – they ought to come up with something more creative than “OK boomer." On the language gauge, we seem to have failed miserably.

Barbara Stanley St. Andrews, N.B.

Knives out

Re Trump Calls Trudeau ‘Two-faced’ Over Candid Video At NATO Reception (Online, Dec. 4): Donald Trump unsurprisingly called out Justin Trudeau on his cocktail indiscretion with Emmanuel Macron and Boris Johnson.

Mackenzie King, Winston Churchill and Charles de Gaulle did not live in the age of social media, but they all seemed to grasp the much older maxim that when you’re chatting behind someone’s back, those same people entertaining your ripostes are just waiting to have a go at you when you leave the room.

Adam de Pencier Toronto

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Human nature seems no different even at high levels – they still talk among themselves and make fun of the bully. Obviously, what happens at NATO doesn’t stay at NATO. Perhaps they should move the talks to Vegas!

Douglas Cornish Ottawa


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