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LETTER: Loggers are standing guard at the entrances of the most vital access roads to their place of work

“Where was and is our NDP (which I voted for all my life as a Canadian) to intervene?”

Dear editor and dear reader,

It is of course shocking to see how these loggers are ‘standing guard’ at the entrances of the most vital access roads to their place of work, the West Coast forests! What would interest me first of all: who is behind this all on behalf of the companies in question, to be that hard-hearted! I do not think it is the lesser local managers for the companies, just my feeling. Anyone who was ever exposed to the hard facts of life, of making a living, getting your hands dirty, I am sure knows better. But let me not get lost in idle speculations.

When someone tells me that the companies rather leave 18 per cent of the lesser wood in the forest and rather pay the penalty, which is much less than bringing the wood out, then I realize the forest is managed with the bottom line in mind and not for what is good for the economy in general. In the Seventies and Eighties and beyond, we did Juvenile Spacing (tree thinning) but that has ended. Why?! Too much of an investment in the future and too much money up front? It is done still in “my” Bavarian Forests, and I do not have to discuss the pros and cons about this at this point.

Years ago our National Railway was privatized (or did I just dream that?). Why?! You would not find a private railway in Europe, or am I badly informed! In Finland I see schoolchildren are taking courses regarding global warming. And what is happening to the effort of that young Swedish teenager? Dr. E. Fritz Schumacher in his book Small is Beautiful and Good Work tells us: “People of good will must unite and act – there are 1.3 billion Catholics and about one billion of the other Christians combined, and surely a Christian must be a person of “good will”. God needs our hands and heads to get things done, or do we really just think prayer alone will do it, for those so inclined. There are 1.28 billion people in China and about the same number in India, India, which will outgrow China in numbers, and as they start suffocating in those Megacities, surely the message must sink in: we are in big trouble on our “fragile” (the aged, my age, 1930, astronaut, Michael Collins, repeated it on TV yesterday) planet.

Where was and is our NDP (which I voted for all my life as a Canadian) to intervene?

I had to visit Vancouver recently and what a job that is, although I wasn’t the driver this time and that is a humbling experience, getting old. At a plant with the letters, “L.B.S.” (Log Bundling Supply) I knocked on the locked door (I was killing time waiting for my relatives driving me) and a middle-aged man opened the door and we ended up in a lively conversation about our West Coast strike, as it affected him hugely. Did you know that the Russians are exporting lumber to the USA West Coast, and is that also one small reason why things have slowed down so much and the companies are not in a hurry. Are by chance those B.C. companies not only buying companies in Virginia (I mean the big companies) and Sweden, but even in Russia? Etc.

And what happened to the idea of a refinery on the West Coast, so we can benefit from that black stuff, if the stuff really has to come out of the ground. I hear the big Oil Companies, that is also, “read” the big money is positioning itself towards “Global Warming” technologies —-they wouldn’t want to be left behind, and remember: the USA has only one percent of solar power so far, if what I hear is correct. Happy New Year!

Wilhelm Waldstein,

Port Hardy

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