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Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada Jody Wilson-Raybould rises during Question Period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on April 19, 2018.

Justin Tang/The Canadian 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

Health survey

Re China Uses High-tech Surveillance In Battle Against Coronavirus (Feb. 13): Infrared imaging, drones, facial recognition, mapping and tracking: Perhaps these tools will help China identify people at risk of infection and monitor their quarantine. But this same technology could also be used to identify those who pose a risk to the Communist Party. Think of the Uyghurs.

Of course, clearances could be provided to those who pose no risk – or who never sat next to a dissident on the bus. It’s all very scary to me.

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Bruce Amos Ottawa

Crisis management

Re How The Wet’suwet’en Nation Hereditary System Works (Feb. 12): Had she remained in cabinet, and given her commitment to righting the wrongs of Canada’s relationship with its Indigenous people, maybe Jody Wilson-Raybould could have intervened to help in the current Wet’suwet’en situation. Maybe not. But is it too late to try?

Could Prime Minister Justin Trudeau ask, on bended knee if necessary, for her to get involved? I don’t know that she would, or should, since this is such a difficult situation. But I am certain the Wet’suwet’en would talk to her. And we, the Canadian people, would be so grateful if she tried to help.

Harvey Kolodny Orangeville, Ont.


I have no doubt that the pipeline crisis with the Wet’suwet’en will be solved quickly. Why? Because it is now directly affecting Toronto and Montreal.

Dan Petryk Calgary

East

Re Ottawa’s Role In The Muskrat Falls Fiasco (Editorial, Feb. 12): I trust that The Globe and Mail will keep digging into the Muskrat Falls debacle as Ottawa moves, I suspect, to bail out a profligate provincial government. At the same time, please keep on top of who pays Prince Harry and Meghan’s security costs while they are in Canada, and question why people airlifted from Wuhan, China, are likely contributing nothing to the cost of transportation.

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The apparent willingness of Ottawa to subsidize all and sundry, while running large budget deficits, seems a troubling example of a government putting its own political needs in a minority situation ahead of the longer-term interests of the country as a whole.

Rob Hawkins Oakville, Ont.


Re A Big Climate Choice In New Brunswick (Editorial, Feb. 10): If we block projects like Maritime Iron, the global economy isn’t going to produce or consume any less iron. It just means that companies like Maritime Iron will probably set up operations outside Canada to meet the global demand, thus having a net neutral impact on global emissions.

We shouldn’t pat ourselves on the back for meeting Paris Agreement targets if we do it by merely displacing our industrial emissions to other countries. My fellow environmentalists should worry less about how much greenhouse gas any given country is emitting, and focus instead on changes that will have a net benefit globally – for instance, transitioning to green technologies.

Rob Maxwell Toronto

West

Re Alberta At Odds With Ottawa Over Emissions Numbers (Feb. 12): It’s extremely frustrating to me that Environment Minister Johnathan Wilkinson seems to be playing politics in tying the approval of the Teck Frontier project to Alberta’s climate-change commitments. Maybe he should consider approving the project from a different perspective.

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Frontier could be looked at as Alberta’s commitment to Indigenous reconciliation, providing wealth and jobs to First Nation members, as well as giving them an opportunity to determine their own future. I believe the same can be said about pipelines. The courts have clearly ruled that Ottawa has been historically negligent in its duty to serve First Nations, so it seems incumbent on provinces such as Alberta to show the Trudeau Liberals what real reconciliation and self-determination could look like.

Paul Baumberg Dead Man’s Flats, Alta.


I have lived in Alberta for 48 years. I was here when Peter Lougheed and Pierre Trudeau had their shootout over the National Energy Policy. I am now watching Jason Kenney and Justin Trudeau do the same over a national climate policy. I see no point in approving the Teck Frontier project.

Because of the almost pathological animosity toward both Trudeaus and the Liberal Party among Alberta’s conservatives, I don’t believe that approval will win them over. In fact, it will alienate other Albertans who support a national climate policy. Why give Mr. Kenney and the oil industry a win and the climate a loss? The Trans Mountain pipeline should be enough.

George Melnyk Calgary


Re Province To Offload Oil-by-rail Contracts (Feb. 12): Alberta Premier Jason Kenney announced that his government has divested of its crude-by-rail contracts at a cost to taxpayers of $1.3-billion. Despite this cost, the government claims their decision to exit these contracts, entered into by the previous NDP government, will still save taxpayers $500-million. Under the NDP’s assumptions, this program was to net $2.2-billion, but by the UCP’s assumptions it was to be a $1.8-billion loss – a staggering difference of $4-billion. Alberta should make fully transparent all of the relevant documents of both the NDP and UCP governments regarding their respective crude-by-rail business cases.

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Albertans should be able to independently assess whether this divestment was made in the best interest of taxpayers, or rather to keep a flawed campaign promise. Until we have full transparency regarding these assumptions, we are left to speculate.

Mike Doma Calgary


Re All In Alberta (Letters, Feb. 10): A letter-writer got me thinking: In addition to the many cultural and sports venues in Alberta, there are more than two dozen universities, colleges and polytechnic institutes. With all that brain power, I wonder why the province has not figured out, and developed, more alternate industry – perhaps something really big and labour-intensive such as electric-vehicle manufacturing.

Alberta could become Canada’s poster province for innovative turnaround: Get rid of coal-fired electricity, and clean up and find uses for thousands of abandoned oil wells. An innovative government might even go so far as to allow Albertans to pay provincial sales tax, like the rest of us. Wouldn’t it be a fine alternative to the current blaming and begging I’ve seen from the Alberta government?

Mary Dixon Winnipeg

Raise a glass

Re ‘She Had A Magical Connection With Readers’ (Feb. 13): It was a pleasure to see Christie Blatchford on the front page, one last time, albeit sad news. She was a wonderful journalist and her columns were a joy to read and appreciate. She’ll be missed by all who know her or read her.

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I only wished we could have hung out together at a bar somewhere. Seems it would have been quite the experience.

Peter Hambly Hanover, Ont.

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