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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau rises during Question Period, in Ottawa on Nov. 29.Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press

And counting

Re “Pierre Poilievre’s lousy week of leadership” (Editorial, Nov. 27): I would caution Pierre Poilievre, for the good of Canadians, to remain focused on his mission to rescue and save Canada.

Recently I overheard a store clerk and letter carrier discussing how difficult it is to make ends meet on their salaries. That is what Mr. Poilievre should focus on.

By my count, Justin Trudeau, having been in power for little over eight years, has had about 420 bad weeks. I believe Canada is in desperate need of saving. Let us hope Mr. Poilievre is the man to do it.

Bob Erwin Ottawa

In too deep

Re “Past governments didn’t work out how to pay for boomers’ retirement” (Report on Business, Nov. 25): Canadian author David Foot wrote the bestseller Boom, Bust & Echo: How to Profit from the Coming Demographic Shift in 1996. It’s seems obvious that most politicians haven’t read it.

There are more retirees than there are workers now. Why are we implementing more social programs that we can’t afford, and hiring tens of thousands more civil servants while banks and accounting firms are cutting staff? Canada’s GDP is shrinking and government spending is putting our children and grandchildren at serious risk.

Our lifestyle will likely be unsustainable unless we start to make unpopular changes. The NDP-Liberal coalition, given two more years, may send us further into the abyss. We cannot spend our way out.

Peter Kaufmann Winnipeg

Other options

Re “Alberta’s sovereignty act looks increasingly like a sham” (Nov. 29): Were Danielle Smith not seemingly so intent on poking a stick in the eye of the federal government, she might merely sign on to the green-electricity deadline and proceed to do only as much as is convenient, until the deadline came and went.

This is usually the Canadian way. When has any jurisdiction in Canada met an environmental deadline? Well, at least once: Alberta is well ahead of targets to get off coal, an initiative of Rachel Notley’s NDP government.

Doug Wiens Edmonton

Re “Danielle Smith isn’t all wrong on the Liberals’ clean electricity regulations” (Nov. 29): I think anybody with reason, who looked at Canada’s efforts to decarbonize its electricity grid, would be totally puzzled as to why this is a national challenge.

Quebec and British Columbia produce enormous surpluses of hydropower which they sell to neighbouring U.S. states. Why are they not selling this green power to fellow Canadians in neighbouring provinces, who still burn coal and natural gas to generate electricity?

Greg Nevison Toronto

Worst case

Re “Hydrogen: A big piece of the clean-energy puzzle” (Online, Nov. 27): While hydrogen has a major role to play in decarbonizing the economy, I believe the World Energy GH2 project in Newfoundland is a step in the wrong direction.

Producing hydrogen from wind-generated electricity, converting it to ammonia, shipping ammonia to Europe and then using that to generate power seems extremely inefficient. It would probably be lucky to get 5 per cent as much energy compared with just building a wind turbine in Germany.

The only way I see building 20 windmills to yield the power of one making any sense is because land is relatively “free” in Newfoundland, whereas it is expensive in Germany. If the project fails, Newfoundland would be left with the derelict towers, access roads, falling-down power pylons, unused plant and torn-up wilderness.

I remember the Sprung greenhouse here in Mount Pearl. That was supposed to make a lot of money.

Peter Gammon St. John’s

Tales from crypto

Re “Crypto laid bare: What U.S. federal charges against Binance’s CEO expose about the industry’s deceit” (Report on Business, Nov. 23): Does Changpeng Zhao have no shame?

He is “proud” to not be alleged to have misappropriated funds or manipulated markets. He is merely alleged to have assisted others in the misappropriation of other people’s funds and financing of terrorist activity. He is proudly, then, the first derivative of a thief.

Is this the standard of acceptable online behaviour in the minds of those running platform businesses? Like so many things on the internet, crooks seem prepared to spend more time fleecing others than platform providers are prepared to spend preventing such malfeasance.

And we are being asked to believe that a world driven by artificial intelligence will somehow be better? Colour me skeptical.

James McSherry Clearview, Ont.

Money trail

Re “Toronto dropping Ontario Place opposition in exchange for province takeover of Gardiner and DVP costs” (Nov. 28): Bully for Toronto.

The city will “save” $6.5-billion and thereby sustain spending on some critical services and infrastructure. However, I fail to understand how transferring the cost of something from one jurisdiction to another can be deemed savings at all.

Now Ontario will have to come up with $6.5-billion from somewhere else in order to maintain the Gardiner Expressway and Don Valley Parkway. I ask Doug Ford this: What more can possibly be slashed from the province’s responsibilities for health, education, care homes and the general welfare of all Ontarians, in order to maintain his precious highways?

Steve Harker Kingston

I find it revealing that, even before ink was dry on the agreement between Ontario and Toronto, Mayor Olivia Chow is speaking of billions of dollars more for affordable housing, transit, communities, child care and parks.

The city has a $1.5-billion annual deficit. The new deal does not eliminate but reduces the shortfall. It will still have a substantial deficit even after the province takes the costs of expressway maintenance off its books.

Where are these new “billions” going to come from? Sounds like tax hikes to me.

Wouldn’t some degree of fiscal responsibility mandate that a budget gap be eliminated before more is spent, or taxes raised?

Andrew Suboch Toronto

In this era of constant political battles over who pays for what, I was pleased to see Toronto and Ontario reach agreement on something.

However, as a resident of the province but not the city, I am not sure how this benefits non-Toronto taxpayers. I might use the Gardiner Expressway and Don Valley Parkway a few times a year and would be more than happy to pay for the privilege on a per-use basis. Ditto for the new spa and parking garage at Ontario Place.

Wait, isn’t there public transit to Toronto’s lakeshore? Things that make one go hmmm.

Vicki Nash-Moore Collingwood, Ont.

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