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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:


Trade with China

Canada is getting disconcertingly closer to a free-trade deal with China (Trudeau Intends To Work Toward Free-Trade Deal With China, Despite Clause In USMCA – Nov. 15). Not only would this open the floodgates to a barrage of cheaply produced Chinese goods, but Canada would be doing business with a nation that violates intellectual property, environmental policy, and human rights.

America’s economy is more in line with Canada’s in terms of social development. With the Trump administration’s recent bi-partisan efforts on judicial reform and reducing emissions from commercial trucking, Canada needs to step back and realize that commonalities are what has forged the U.S.-Canada relationship – not just geographic convenience.

Marcel Beauchamp, Toronto


The Trudeau government is busy working on a free-trade deal with China. This is good for Canada.

What is not good is our carbon tax, or as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau puts it, price on pollution.

On one hand, we penalize hard-working Canadians who produce some of the most ethical energy in the world, and must use energy to keep warm, drive long distances and live a decent life.

On the other hand, we reward China, the world’s biggest polluter, by purchasing its products and services, bolstering its economy. Where is the carbon tax on China? Why are we paying for its failure to take meaningful action on pollution?

Chuck Bean, Calgary


China’s Belt and Road Initiative is a major component of its scheme to dominate world trade. While Canada and the United States quibble over the details of our trade relationship, China is busy gobbling up ports and airports, and funding major infrastructure projects in countries both agreeable and averse to what we consider proper conduct.

The thrust of the Belt and Road Initiative is to meld Asia and Europe into a supercontinent replete with resources for China’s exploitation, and consumers eager to purchase goods that find their way to market via Chinese controlled routes.

China’s deft application of economic statecraft is truly a wonder, and while we are awestruck by the accomplishments, and distracted by considerations of morality which China deems inconsequential, China is happy to sell us more.

It is a fantastic pantomime and we are being skillfully played.

Darcy Charles Lewis, Calgary


Half the effort the past two years spent wooing American states or executives should have been invested in boldly and loudly pursuing trade agreements with China and the Middle East.

Pressure America’s government and citizens to realize that Chinese-manufactured products in every field are attractive alternatives to the United States’ goods, particularly if China and the Middle East offer to use tariff-free steel, aluminum and wood resources, buy a miscellany of technical services and manufactured products, and make substantial capital investments in Canadian assembly or branch plants, airports, inter-Canada travel services etc.

If the United States wants isolation, make it clear that Canada does not.

Paul Bennett, Richmond Hill, Ont.

Warning: It’s plastic

We know that the Chinese will no longer recycle our plastic, that the plastic island in the Pacific Ocean is growing, that dead birds and fish are often found to have swallowed or become entangled in plastic waste. Now we know human beings are also literally contaminated with plastic (Perils Of Plastic – Nov. 15; Gut Check: The New Crisis Of Plastic In The Human Body – Opinion, Nov. 10).

Yet in the grocery line at almost any supermarket (Victoria is an exception) customers glibly chat with clerks as they stuff single-use plastic bag after plastic bag with items that are often also packaged in even more plastic.

As we did with images of diseased lungs printed on cigarette packages, let us mandate that the ugly side of plastic be represented in graphic images stamped on every plastic bag used in Canada as a reminder that they are not an innocuous receptacle, but a dirty habit that needs to be broken.

Diane Langston, Calgary

Pipelines and rescues

Re Only Pipelines Can Rescue The Oil Patch Now (editorial, Nov. 16): I agree with your editorial arguing for more pipelines to clear the massive backlog of bitumen in Alberta.

I would also argue that a large slice of blame for the current situation rests with former Alberta governments that allowed massive expansion of oil sand production without proper due diligence regarding the transport of this stuff, or the on-site and downstream environmental issues raised by many critics.

Like the mining, lumber, agriculture and fish industries, these people believed they could transport and sell all they could make. “Don’t tell me the horses are lame, just load the wagons” became the narrative.

The oil pipeline industry, in general, should share in this blame. There are spills in recent times associated with leaky pipelines; opponents can rightly point to them. Spills in Michigan, Saskatchewan, Northern Alberta, North Dakota and Burnaby, B.C., come to mind. Where were the safeguards? If they were there, why didn’t they work? In short, pipeline companies have shot themselves in the foot repeatedly – and they want our government to heal the wounds.

Now some oil executives are calling for government intervention to limit production (Oil Patch CEO Urges Alberta To Impose Production Quotas – Report on Business, Nov. 15). How ironic is that?

Andrew Baker, Burlington, Ont.


Canada’s national newspaper is advocating building and approving more pipelines to move Alberta oil. This, despite every indication that climate change is a very serious problem to which the burning of fossil fuels is a major contributor.

Alternative energy sources are in the early stages of development, comparable to aircraft at the start of the last century. There’s little inducement to improve them and develop new ones as long as we provide incentives for fossil fuel extraction.

Doug Brandy, Ottawa

Peas on toast

Re Goop Fan? Not So Much (Letters, Nov. 16): The letter writer who recounted the lines, “The Goops they lick their fingers,/ And the Goops they lick their knives” brought to mind another take on manners, this one about the guy at the head of the table who told his family:

I eat my peas with honey;

I’ve done it all my life.

It makes the peas taste funny,

But it keeps them on the knife.

And, of course, as everyone knows, Emily Post spread peas on her toast.

But blame the English for inventing bad food manners, as well as the good. After all, they’re the ones who came up with the cockamamie idea of dipping soldiers head-first into boiled eggs at breakfast.

David Greer, Victoria

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