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The federal election campaign English-language leaders' debate in Gatineau, Que., on Sept. 9.

Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press

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Debating the debate

Re As Trudeau Attempts Offensive Play, Moderators Keep Debate Civil, And Bland (Sept. 10): The debates were remarkable to me for their fundamental unfairness to the governing party.

When five leaders are put on stage, four of whom spend most of their time attacking the fifth, voters hear little of where each stands on the issues, or how they’d put policies into effect or pay for them.

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Perhaps the incumbent could face only two chief opposition leaders, not four (or five). The others could debate among themselves. The divisive debates of this election should never be repeated.

Ray Argyle Kingston, Ont.

Why is someone who only represents one province participating in a debate to become prime minister? If Canadians have climate change as their major concern, why doesn’t the Green Party have more MPs?

Debates concerning which party will be in charge should have only leaders who have a possibility of getting enough votes to run the country.

Barbara Cantlie Toronto

I enjoyed the debate and congratulate the media organizations involved for doing a first-class job.

The moderators were good at keeping things on track. But this is always a no-win situation for whoever hosts it, as viewers are always disgruntled afterward no matter what happens.

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I have watched various election debates for over 50 years and it is ever thus.

Barry Rolston Victoria

The debate was a genuine display of Canada’s diverse citizenry – likely foretelling another enviable minority government.

Joe Schwarz Penticton, B.C.

Re The Knitting Channel (Editorial Cartoon, Sept. 10): Who is The Globe and Mail calling boring? We knitters take offence that our craft was used as a foil for a perceived lack of interest in the debate. Perhaps if the leaders stuck to their knitting, we’d all be in a better place!

Ann Sullivan Peterborough, Ont.

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Armed and dealing

Re UN Panel Criticizes Canada For Fuelling War In Yemen (Sept. 9): This news is upsetting to peace-loving Canadians and others who oppose arms-dealing. It’s more than embarrassing. It’s outrageous that Canada is included in a United Nations panel list as arms dealers.

We’re named for the second year in a row as one of a few countries helping Saudi Arabia in the war in Yemen. Yet in Saudi Arabia, human rights are often lacking, especially for women and girls. Canada should condemn the country, not deal with it.

Let’s remember this outrageous wheeling and dealing on Sept. 20.

Helen Sinfield Hansen Guelph, Ont.

Must-see TV?

Re The CBC Should Be An Election Issue (Sept. 9): Why does columnist Konrad Yakabuski think that English CBC Television is irrelevant? Why is it that Conservative candidates always want to kill it?

I can see that CBC news broadcasts are similar to private stations. So what? I know how to switch channels. What is really unfair and disgusting to me are attempts to gag a public voice for the sake of private money.

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Private entertainment money brings painfully loud, bombastic ads to movie theatres with no alternative. Do we really want that on our TVs at home?

Brian Emes Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ont.

We should take a serious look at the CBC and its role in the broadcasting environment of 2021. Columnist Konrad Yakabuski’s point about CBC Television becoming at least a version of a PBS of the North is well taken, certainly “from a programming perspective.”

We should have a full debate in the remaining days of the election campaign about the future of the CBC. If not, whichever party that wins should launch, yet again, a complete review of the CBC and its mandate, and where such a broadcaster fits in the digital media age.

Michael Nolan London, Ont.

Don’t bank on it

Re Liberal Campaign Vow For Bank Tax Tempers Investor Expectations (Sept. 8): Why is Justin Trudeau limiting his tax to banks and insurance companies? If he were serious about raising money, he would also include all the other companies with profit over $1-billion in Canada: railways, telecoms, energy companies, Shopify.

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He is probably just playing on the age-old public dislike for banks and insurance companies.

Ted Steven Nanaimo, B.C.

Higher-income individuals, who are generally the innovators, investors, leaders and donors in our society, already contribute a disproportionate amount of tax.

When federal income tax, provincial tax and surtax, sales tax, excise tax and municipal taxes are taken into account, the tax rate can exceed 60 per cent. What incentive does additional taxation provide for these people, and what is the impact on private investment, job creation, charitable giving, etc.?

For corporations, profit is the result of selling goods and services in a competitive marketplace, and reflects the associated risks. Any Canadian who has a pension plan, RRSP, RRIF or TFSA benefits through corporate dividends and the increased value of investments. Diverting profit through increased taxation, however good the cause, affects the wellbeing of pensioners.

Perhaps our governments should manage more efficiently, enforce the Income Tax Act to collect taxes owed and deal with those who abuse the law.

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Frank Lochan Oakville, Ont.

Why does our Prime Minister dislike Canadian-owned businesses so much? He toyed with our airlines through 2020 while other countries stepped in to support theirs. Now he is targeting financial institutions for higher taxes.

Would he dare to tax sectors that include foreign-owned giants, many of whom have benefitted from the pandemic, such as Walmart, Costco, Amazon, Home Depot and others? I say not a chance.

Tony Hooper Toronto

Yet more debt

Re Canada Bet Big On Real Estate. Now, It’s A Drag On The Economy (Report on Business, Sept. 6): The first step to recovery is admitting to having a problem. Yet federal parties just keep saying, “Everyone gets a pony!’ Or in this case, a house. This likely won’t solve our housing woes and, in many cases, will make it worse.

We should recognize that Canada has relied on housing and debt for far too long. None of our politicians have admitted what may be ahead of us: an unsustainable situation that puts all of us, and future generations, at risk of becoming nothing but debt zombies.

The more money one spends on housing, the less can be spent elsewhere in the economy. High house prices ultimately hurt society as a whole – we’re nearly at the end of the line.

I pity any poor soul who gets elected as prime minister. We’ve gone so far and there’s no easy way out of this mess.

Elaine Tindall Vancouver

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