Letters to the Editor

Write: letters@pentictonherald.ca

Carbon tax won’t work

Dear Editor:

In theory, carbon tax is supposed to reduce the use of fossil fuels by increasing fuel prices, thus reducing carbon emissions.

In reality, that doesn’t happen because carbon fuels are essential for vehicles and home heating. The end result is that we suck it up and pay more for the same amount of fuel, while government collects more taxes from us.

The government claims that carbon taxes are revenue neutral, meaning that all taxes will be returned to those who pay them. If it’s all going to be returned to us, then why collect it in the first place? This is a deception.

We’ve paid carbon taxes for 12 years without reducing emissions at all. Most of it goes into government revenue, although people at the lower end of the income scale do receive a carbon tax rebate based on net income. It would be enlightening to see an annual summary of B.C. carbon tax rebates versus revenues. Half truths are still lies.

Giving rebates to low income voters creates another voting dependency, and is another form of wealth redistribution from those who pay more taxes to those who pay less or no taxes. If we’re making charitable donations, at least give us a tax credit.

We’re now confronted with a double whammy of Justin Trudeau’s new Clean Fuel Standard Tax and a big hike in his carbon tax. The combined impact of this will be huge, considering that carbon taxes are also embedded in transportation costs for everything. This will be anything but revenue neutral.

The Liberals are out of touch with reality by imposing this burden in the middle of COVID. We’ll inevitably be paying more taxes to get out of the COVID hole, while struggling to get our economy off its knees. Contrary to Trudeau’s breezy assurances, a $400 billion debt increase isn’t free because of COVID. More taxes are coming; it’s just a question of when.

The impact of increasing municipal and provincial debt falls on the same taxpayers who, unfortunately, have chosen to carry the world’s biggest personal debt loads. When you’ve got a school of piranhas feeding on your feet their names don’t matter.

Trudeau timed his big carbon announcement for the fifth anniversary of the Paris Climate Accords. It’s the usual glitzy virtue signalling and throwing more money at fuzzy, feel good ideas.

Our government is supposed to be helping Canadians, not impoverishing them.

John Thompson

Kaleden

Not convinced that restaurants are safe

Dear Editor:

Re: “Restaurant industry is getting a raw deal,” by Gregory Condonopoulos, owner of Theo’s (Herald letters, Dec. 15).

About 10 years ago, during flu and cold season, I went to a Chinese-food smorgasbord. Half of the people at the serving table were sneezing, the other half were blowing their noses.

I thought, why am I in this restaurant at this smorg table, touching the serving spoons and forks that have been handled by other people that were obviously ill. Do you know that I have never been back to a smorg, why would I intentionally infect myself with a cold or the flu?

COVID-19 transmission is also of a great concern to myself.

Some people shopping in London Drugs, Walmart and Super Store have probably worn the same mask for a month without ever washing it, but if I want to eat, I need to visit these establishments.

In a restaurant, customers can not eat with a mask on and fellow patrons are capable of infecting one another. No expert yet knows exactly how far the COVID-19 virus can travel.

Would restaurants take the temperature of every patrons entering your establishment? 

I doubt it.

I agree with Mr. Condonopoulos that this COVID – 19 virus is a bitch for all concerned, but we need to have the experts take all of the precautions needed to keep us safe and protect our fellow residents (and I am one of the more susceptible older residents).

COVID-19 experts, please protect us at all costs.

Ted Wiltse

Penticton

Welcome supportive housing facility

Dear Editor:

Re: “City getting new 54-unit supportive housing facility,” (Herald, Dec. 16).

Let me be one of the first to express my excitement about the new supportive housing going up in 2021 on Skaha Lake Road, a stone’s throw from where I live with my two kids.

This will help so many people after all we have been through this year. Hearing in the span of just mere days that two housing units are going up next year is the best Christmas gift ever.

Although I was disappointed, but not surprised that both Couns. Judy Sentes and Katie Robinson were opposed to the downtown Main Street unit, the voices of reason spoke out and in the end the project was approved.

Thank you to those who voted for helping people. I hope this Christmas spirit continues over the next two years of city council’s term.

Be the village.

Kristine Lee Shepherd

Penticton

Harm reduction at expense of treatment

Dear Editor:

I read the article “Overdose ambulance calls up 70% in city” (Herald, Dec. 9) with great interest — especially the drop in overdose deaths thus far in 2020.

I agree with the statements made by Jill Pascoe and Carl Meadows regarding harm reduction; however, my concern is that the Interior Health Authority is promoting harm reduction at the expense of treatment.

I have always believed in harm reduction, but as a gateway to treatment (as well as a way to reduce stigmatization). For example, Insite (a safe injection site) in East Vancouver works because the staff there can refer participants directly to Onsite detox as it is located right above Insite in the same building.

Without that direct path to readily available treatment, I believe that most harm reduction policies and practices are ultimately doomed to fail.

Sherry Ure, ND Chair

Pathways Addictions Resource Centre

Penticton