In other words
Re “There must now be a major broad investigation into Chinese election meddling” (March 17): David Johnston can save us a lot of time and money by borrowing from Rouleau’s report on the trucker protests.
At the very least: “Responding to threats and emergencies in the federal system requires governments at all levels, and those who lead them, to rise above politics and work together for the common good. Unfortunately… that didn’t always happen.
Bob Moore Guelph, Ont.
Any other name
Re “Canadian Pacific Railway gets US regulator approval to buy Kansas City Southern” (Business Report, March 16): Canadian Pacific Railway is to be congratulated on this acquisition and expanding its reach into Mexico. But the new name, Canadian Pacific Kansas City, seems like a sad choice for this iconic line.
The name of this mid-sized American city, which is not particularly interesting to Canadians, will now be displayed on stock tickers across Canada. “South Canadian Pacific” would be more descriptive and accurate.
What would Pierre Berton say?
John Edmond Ottawa
There is no choice
Re “Will Crackdown on Private Telemedicine Improve Access to Health Care? The Jury’s Out” (March 14): We’ve got better things to do in healthcare than fall down this private-telemedicine rabbit hole. Most people pay for private telemedicine not because they enjoy it, but because there is no alternative.
There should be no debate that publicly funded health care is better than telemedicine. But tell that to the millions of Canadians who have no primary care physician, with no immediate prospects for improvement.
Ravi Deshpande Toronto
Re “It doesn’t add up” (Letters, March 15): I remember another letter, to another newspaper, from 2016, expressing almost identical sentiments about returning to Old Age Security.
That correspondent suggested that the money saved by reducing the level of refunds should go towards improving the Guaranteed Income Supplement. Seven years later, unfortunately, there is no shortage of places where that money could be put to better use: deficits, health care, affordable housing, First Nations, the military—the list of needs is not short.
Normally I wouldn’t remember something like this, but as it happens, I wrote that letter.
Ira Greenblatt Ottawa
Most baby boomers were not yet born when Old Age Security became a universal federal program in 1952.
Most baby boomers were not old enough to vote when OAS eligibility dropped from age 70 to age 65 in 1965.
Increasing OAS for the over-75s was not in the Liberal platform for the 2021 election, so no one had a chance to vote yes or no.
How is it that “greedy” baby boomers are responsible for federal fiscal pressures due to OAS payments?
George Olsen Calgary
Re “The former director of St. Michael’s Vas Georgiou, John Aquino construction boss indicted in corruption probe” (March 10): I am reading with increasing concern about the ongoing saga of Bondfield Construction and St. Michael. My bigger issue is the role of Infrastructure Ontario.
The agency was to oversee the successful completion of this project on time and on budget, on behalf of the taxpayers of Ontario. It absolved itself of responsibility, based on its own internal audit.
My question: When will the leadership of Infrastructure Ontario be held accountable for their role in this fiasco? When will the Prime Minister take action on behalf of the taxpayers, who will ultimately foot the bill?
Anthony Graham CM, MD; Toronto
Re “Why is Toronto tearing down tall buildings? Ask City Planning” (February 27): I am a principal at Marani & Morris, which designed 505 University Ave. in Toronto. I find it outrageous that the city has not awarded the building a heritage designation.
The former headquarters of Shell Canada served for more than five decades as one of Canada’s most elegant mid-century modernist office buildings. For city planners to approve the demolition of this 20-story tower and the construction of a new 64-story building in its place feels like an unimaginable disrespect to our built cultural heritage, as well as an utter disregard for sustainability. The amount of carbon embedded in this building, relative to the net carbon cost of the renovation, is staggering.
What should be done with large buildings from the middle and late 20th century? Simple: Require them to be sustainably retrofitted and repurposed, similar to the Imperial Oil Building on St. Clair Avenue.
Toronto: Please stop this demolition before it’s too late.
bob goyeche Managing Director, RDH Architects; Toronto
Re “Toronto’s housing plan is short on specifics despite dire housing affordability crisis” (March 15): Our coy thinking, focused on “mid-rises” and “small apartment buildings,” should be replaced by bolder but simple ideas if they hope to reach the province’s “housing target of 285,000 new homes”. Here are two simple ideas for Toronto planners to consider.
Idea no. 1: Use a model of the Sheppard subway line, where multiple skyscrapers are built at each station. Apply this to the Bloor-Danforth subway line: Build five 60-story buildings (15 units per floor) at each of the 30 stations. This is equal to 135,000 units.
Idea no. 2: Map Toronto into 30 single-family home “areas”. Build five 60-story buildings with affordable housing (15 units per floor) in each of the 30 areas. That equates to another 135,000 units.
The final 15,000 units, needed to reach the target of a total of 285,000 over 10 years, could be the current proposed “mid-rise” and “small apartment buildings”.
Michael Tukatsch Toronto
The Royal Torment
Re “Canadians uninterested in King Charles coronation, British monarchy, poll shows” (March 15): Canadians are losing interest in the British monarchy, and King Charles in particular. Regardless, Canada will no doubt send a sizeable delegation to attend the May 6 coronation.
Can we have a list of participants and estimated costs for this? Anyone who has traveled to London knows how expensive it can be, and our various officials, representatives and envoys have been known to behave quite well.
Details on the cost of this adventure are likely to be leaked later – after the money is spent. If the government is forced to report now, perhaps an element of restraint could be applied?
Dave Kennedy Toronto
Re “I Am Fear: Learning to Bring the Light Back While It’s Still Dark” (Opinion, March 11): “Have you been feeling uneasy lately?” I advise what writer Susan Sontag advised: “Don’t suffer future pain .“
Those words helped me focus on the known and not worry so much about the unknown.
Philippa King Toronto
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