It’s only money

Section: 
Editorial

What’s the matter with this picture?

 

In Canada, we allow some railways to operate trains with one employee and we allow trains to sit unattended on a siding for hours at a time.

 

If that train accident in Quebec had happened in a Third World country, we would be lamenting the lack of regulations, just like when the garment factories collapsed in Bangladesh.

 

Canada all of a sudden doesn’t seem much different.

 

Canada and the U.S.A. spend billions of dollars annually to protect us from terrorists. Who is going to protect us from ourselves?

 

I was in Walkerton a week ago Sunday and dropped into the water park memorial to the victims of the e-coli disaster in that town a few years ago.

 

Seven people died and hundreds fell sick after the water supply was contaminated following a rain storm.

That disaster was, in part, caused by a cutback in provincial water inspectors.

 

Last year, a handful of people died following the sale of tainted beef by an Alberta meat packer, XL Foods.

The federal government believes meat packers can do most of their own inspections, allowing the government to cut back on food inspectors.

 

After the Quebec train accident and the death of 50 people, we learn that the federal government has the same philosophy about transportation safety as it does about food safety.

 

Canada is on a race to the bottom – cut expenses for everyone but politicians. We apparently can’t afford inspectors, or money for infrastructure, likely because the politicians, federal and provincial, are busy travelling the countryside giving out money to clubs, to restore old town halls, fix community centres, put up signs, you name it.

 

Politicians waste money and then proudly say, “We won’t raise taxes!”

 

Meanwhile, cities and towns flood and have blackouts, people needlessly die from tainted meat, contaminated water and horrific train accidents.

 

Now we’ll likely have another huge study to determine the cause of the train accident. More money wasted and no one will be found accountable.

 

When do Canadians get angry?

 

**

 

On the same theme, municipal politicians aren’t much better.

 

Kincardine, as you likely read, recently handed out the 2013 Community Grants. The municipality doled out $60,175 provided by Enbridge and $80,300 of taxpayers’ money.

 

Let’s just talk about the $80,300 of tax money. A civilized community helps those in need so I have no trouble with donations to Community Living Kincardine and District, Big Brothers and Big Sisters, Kincardine Guiding, the Women’s House, Minor Sports organizations, etc.

 

But I wonder why taxpayers are supporting organizations such as Artful Hands, Lighthouse Blues Festival, the Bluewater Summer Playhouse, Breast Cancer Society of Canada, the salmon derby, Grey Bruce Woodturners Guild, Kincardine Chamber of Commerce, Bruce County Rugby and on and on.

 

Adults should be able to look after themselves.

 

The Blues Festival, held this past weekend, did well when it comes to grants - $2,500 from taxpayers, $2,500 from Enbridge and another $2,000 from the BIA.

 

I can’t blame the organizations for applying for money if the municipality is passing it out.

 

I do believe the local politicians should look at their guidelines for the distribution of funds.