Letters Oct. 7: Green Party's new leader; where ICBC is heading

Not Black or Jewish, a human being

Congratulations to Annamie Paul for her leadership win of the Federal Green Party. I am certain she will lead with distinction.

I must object to her being described as “Black and Jewish”. I believe there is only one race — that being human. Paul certainly fits that description. Her colour and her religion have little to do with her being the leader of the Greens. I don’t recall either Justin Trudeau or Erin O’Toole being described as “white and Catholic” or “white and of Irish heritage.”

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Let’s stop all references to religion and skin colour ­— it is character and one’s feelings for humanity that really matters.

Don Richards
Courtenay

Greens lose their moral compass

Re: “Greens slam other parties for refusing to show Annamie Paul ‘leader’s courtesy,’ ” Oct. 6.

In Annamie Paul’s acceptance speech last Saturday as leader of the federal Green Party, she said she would be an ally for those fighting for justice.

Today, I read that the former leader of the same party wants all other federal party candidates to withdraw from a upcoming byelection so Paul can win her seat in the House of Commons.

What is this world coming to? One never knows where they stand any more, because it seems some people’s moral compass has been lost. And to think many Canadians laugh at the upcoming elections in the U.S.

Tim Ackerman
Courtenay

That’s condensation, not our spit

Re: “Instrument ‘masks,’ puppy pee pads keep music class alive in schools,” Oct. 4.

Condensate, not “spittle,” collects inside the instruments. Condensation (water) results from the difference in temperature of the air expelled by our bodies and the outside temperature, while spittle is produced by salivary glands.

Big difference! We don’t spit into our instruments!

Gerry Stuurop, flute
Cobble Hill

ICBC is finally taking the right road

It is fascinating to watch the B.C. Liberals attempt to avoid responsibility for their mismanagement of ICBC’s finances, as evidenced by the comments by their candidate for Oak Bay-Gordon Head.

Facing annual double-digit increases in claims costs during the last five years of its time in power, the Liberal government kept ICBC’s premium increases well below the increase in costs. This policy resulting in large annual operating losses at ICBC, and the destruction of some $3.6 billion in policyholders’ capital (equity) reserve.

Faced with ICBC’s unsustainable operating losses, the new NDP government announced in early 2018 the adoption of a hybrid-tort liability model, similar to the scheme used by Alberta and some other provinces.

This model capped the payment for pain and suffering for minor injuries and increased some of the key no-fault coverage limits to better reflect current costs. These changes came into effect in April 2019, and have stanched the red ink.

Then in February 2020, the government announced that ICBC would adopt a full no-fault model similar to that in use in Manitoba, effective in May 2021. Again, the savings from the elimination of payments for pain and suffering will enhance the coverage limits for items such as rehabilitation and wage loss, and will significantly reduce premiums beginning next year.

To claim that the no-fault model “totally guts” insurance coverage is wrong. Injured parties will have the highest coverage limits in the country, and not be forced to launch extended and expensive law suits to fund their recovery.

B.C. will join three other provinces where drivers are highly satisfied with the no-fault model, and have much lower premiums compared to the hybrid-tort jurisdictions.

How better coverage, higher coverage limits and lower premiums equates to “paying a tax to drive” in the Liberal party’s thinking reflects the disinformation that was a feature of the ICBC file during the last five years when that party formed government.

Richard McCandless
Saanich

B.C. Liberals forget their own history

The Andrew Wilkinson-led B.C. Liberal Party just announced they wish to end the ICBC monopoly for auto insurance while railing against the NDP for high premiums. Wilkinson has been a party member since 2013, and so was part of the group that literally stole $1.2 billion from B.C. drivers to prop up their balanced-budget falsehood.

I challenge Wilkinson to show any evidence he protested that this theft was unethical or wrong during the 2013-to-2016 period. Now that there is nothing to take from ICBC, he suddenly changes his tune. You cannot have it both ways.

Wayne Messer
Saanich

Sage advice for political novices

A provincial election campaign is now fully underway. Here is my advice to those newly running to be elected.

First, learn quickly how to smile and be constantly politically correct. This is regardless of the temptation on occasion to say what you really think.

Second, observe and follow closely the style, substance and system of those “political professionals” repeatedly returned to office.

Graeme Roberts
Brentwood Bay

Maybe Horgan had no choice in election call

Re: “Greens have only themselves to blame,” letter, Oct. 6.

I agree with the letter-writer that the Green party should have been better prepared for an election call, and would go a step further: John Horgan had a good working relationship with Andrew Weaver, one that was giving us good government.

However, since Sonia Furstenau has became the B.C. Green leader, she has had nothing good to say about Horgan. She says Horgan broke the agreement between the Greens and the NDP by not consulting her before calling the election.

Perhaps her apparent lack of co-operation also went against the agreement, and would be one reason for Horgan to feel that he really had no choice — this was his window of opportunity to move.

Stephen Pierrot
Saanich

PM is exporting Canada’s emissions

Re: “Invest in the future, not in the past,” letter, Oct 6.

The Trans Mountain pipeline is a cornerstone of Justin Trudeau’s environment policy to reduce Canada’s emissions. Export Alberta heavy oil to Asia, where it is refined and used to produce even more greenhouse gases and plastic crap. No longer Canada’s problem — the other guy did it.

Unfortunately, the Fukushima nuclear disaster taught us that pollutants travel from the eastern coasts of Asia, across and into the Pacific Ocean, to the western shores of North America, especially the coast of British Columbia. The Rockies and the Prairies largely minimized these effects on Bay Street and Ottawa.

An aside: More orcas will die from starvation due to warmer, more acidic oceans and plastic pollution than from the official line of “ship noise/strikes or oil spills,” or even from a legal AR-15.

Bob Calder
Cobble Hill

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