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LETTER: Forestry will always be here and survive

“These huge Canadian forests and wherever they are in North America will be there”

Dear Editor and Dear Reader,

One thing I can assure you: Forestry will always be here and survive. The same I would not make a bet for capitalism. These huge Canadian forests and wherever they are in North America will be there, clear-cutting (and then replanting) or selective logging as in my “job guaranteed for life” Bavarian Forests, which I left as a young man, — not knowing what I was really giving up — after a four year training period and a further three years as a fully trained “logger”/”Waldfacharbeiter” (part of your happiness in doing your job, the Germans like to give themselves respectable titles, and “Waldfacharbeiter” is a long way from being just called a “logger”, when in fact, logging here on the West Coast is a more serous business than in many places of those gentle slopes of the Bavarian forests, their Alpine regions the exception of course. But Bill, the old foolish man, feels he now is getting sidetracked. (For comic relief, if not the Christian Bible, clinging to a ray of hope, that maybe, just maybe, this life is not all there is, I am reading, re-reading Homer’s Odyssey, the theme and topic, in case the reader is not familiar with it: the way home (from the Trojan Wars/in my case from Canada) and the difficulties the hero finds himself confronted with again and again, finding himself at the mercy of the many of the Greek gods, the ancients came up with as an explanation of what happened to them. In the Christian religion, we ask the Big Why?! (If you, the Reader, or even some of our ministers of the church or priests want to read up further on it, read a book like Harold S. Kushner’s “When Bad Things Happen to Good People, leaving the field wide open for sceptics like Bertrand Russel with the views of an atheist, one of his many books, “Why I am not a Christian.”

If the climate situation is as serious as we can hardly doubt anymore it is from all the signs and evidences that confront us, “living our life as usual” will soon come to an end. Running our forests from Wall Street, looking at the bottom line for the share holders, buying and selling stocks like naughty children, will come to an end. And why don’t I come out and say it: Run the show the way the Bavarians do it: the government has a crown corporation, The Bavarian Forest Service, and if I maybe permitted here to get really personal: a phone call “home to my village”, the successor of my successor tells me, “He never had to go on strike,” except the bigger government employee union went on strike once in 34 years. The priority will be the environment –the effect on climate in everything we do and that includes, walking to the post office and not driving to it, or the mail man from house to house will have to return – and the effect on our climate! How painful to see the documentary on my German channel, children in Finland who live in the high north, their concern and education they get re what climate change is doing to their way of life. We can panic and run (do nothing) or we take up the challenge and throw out guys like that Brazilian president, who promotes gold mining and cow pastures to allowing their First Nations to live in these ancient tropical forests and bring “Lulu” back as president. Etc. Etc. Etc.

Wilhelm Waldstein,

Port Hardy

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