Send your letter to the editor via email to news@mapleridgenews.com and include your first and last name, address, and phone number. (Black Press Media files)

Send your letter to the editor via email to news@mapleridgenews.com and include your first and last name, address, and phone number. (Black Press Media files)

LETTER: Pitt Meadows resident generally pleased with government, considering COVID, floods and fires

Local letter writer likens current surreal situation to Alice in Wonderland

Dear Editor,

Re: [LETTER: Maple Ridge’s MLA isn’t working for struggling community, letter writer argues, mapleridgenews.com, Jan. 4]

I read Heather McCain’s letter to the editor, dated Jan. 4.

I read it with the eagerness of Alice looking through the looking glass in Wonderland. Heather mentions natural disasters like co-vid, flooding, and wildfires on one hand. Then, on the other hand, she decries that there is not enough funding for small businesses. She blames Bob D’Eith, John Horgan, and I gather by extension, the NDP government. Now, I’m assuming, given her mentioning of extraordinary natural disasters that she is aware that such calamities cost a lot of money to try to deal with. And when I say a lot, I surely mean a lot. And where exactly does that money come from, I wonder.

Wonderland?

Her only real suggestion is to mention the cost of constituency offices and MLA salaries. That might only provide an itsy bitsy way to solve the huge problems – rather like the Cheshire Cat blowing smoke in Alice in Wonderland.

Should everyone pay more taxes to deal with such dreadful natural disasters? Or is there plenty of money? I can’t even begin to think about what co-vid has done to the costs incurred in our health systems, plus all the other systems. And what about all the other government assistance payments? It’s easy to say dispense more, without saying from where — and from which services.

And when a government spends more and more, who gets criticized later for such escalated spending?

(Note: I personally feel that a government should circulate to every household, at the end of a financial cycle, all the key increased costs that have been incurred, in order that people, have a better idea of the spending pie, so to speak.)

Yes, the government has poured a lot of money into opening the flood-ravaged highways, but if they had not done so, what effect would that have had on the economy? Would people rather have the highways stay closed and more money go to small businesses? And what would the consequences be for small businesses if the highways weren’t immediately a spending focus. As in every home in B.C., we can’t always get everything we would like and/or when we would like it.

Heather relays that the government has had two years to find a solution to the problem of COVID overwhelming the hospitals. Well, I guess she can find some good examples from the wide world stage that have done better. Maybe she might mention some societies of singular purpose and admirable governance, dealing with the ever shifting tides of the pandemic. Perhaps if she is unhappy with the NDP in B.C., she can find some more Conservative provincial governments in Canada that have done better — even notwithstanding major flooding and fires, on top of everything else.

Heather mentioned Ontario’s lack of being overwhelmed by COVID. I don’t know where she is getting her information from. From a myriad of other sources, which I have been reading, it’s been just the complete opposite.

Heather mentioned phoning D’Eith’s offices during Dec. 20 to Jan.3 and getting a message that his office was closed for the holidays. No doubt, she also phoned Marc Dalton’s Conservative office and got a very different message.

I believe that the BC NDP is working very conscientiously during these exceedingly difficult times. They are not miracle workers. They cannot provide all that they would hope for small businesses, nor can they provide all the surgeries they would wish for, especially during the other considerable strains in our health care system.

If Heather is going to attach blame, maybe it should be aimed at those in our society who are being less than co-operative. That is, those persons who add additional burden on our already greatly diminished financial resources like health care.

I would like to state emphatically that I am not unempathetic with what many, many small businesses must be going through. No doubt, it is hellish. Still, a government can only do so much. I realize that the government subsidies are not going to be enough. Still, perhaps some help is better than nothing. And unless everyone is willing to pay more taxes, the well only hold so much water… Alas, Alice.

Brian Koven, Pitt Meadows

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• READ MORE: Provincial government eases rules for small business to get COVID relief

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