Going in style

Mayor John Vassilaki, right and Coun. Frank Regehr get a lift from Cycling Without Age volunteers at the official grand opening of the lake-to-lake bike lane in this Herald file photo from August 2021.

Bike lanes a done deal, now let the matter drop

Dear Editor:

There have been too many negative

comments about the bike lanes in Penticton.

They are very valuable additions to the city and will be used by many.

It is a done deal!

Let the matter drop!

Margarita Nodwell


Employees are the major drivers in successful health care

Dear Editor:

As someone who has worked in and studied our health care system, I am most disappointed on how the media is covering our health care challenges: both the nature and causes of the problem.

For one thing, our system is not crumbling. The vast majority of Canadians who seek care are properly diagnosed and treated by highly-committed and competent health professionals; ignoring that fact is highly irresponsible.

The system does have challenges but not for the reasons given by the media or by many of their experts. These people, although well intentioned, are missing a key issue. The major drivers of our health care system are employees. How this valuable resource is managed ultimately determines the effectiveness of our system.

Unfortunately it is not managed very well.

A key reason is the ever-growing bureaucracy which is diverting employee resources away from care delivery. Multiple levels of management means employees are far removed from decisions that affect them with little or no say about how care is organized and delivered.

This hierarchy leads to overly complex work procedures with unnecessary steps and forms where employees spend more and more time on administration and red tape. It is estimated that health professionals now spend as much time on paperwork as they do delivering care. Within this bureaucracy employees are also limited by restrictive job duties that prevent them from fully utilizing their skills and training. “There is a lot more we could be doing for our patients but can’t” say many of the health care professionals.

So the truth is that until we learn how to properly manage the most important resource in health care “the employees” we will never achieve the efficient quality care that the employees can provide and that the public deserves.

Why do I know this? I spent 35 years working in and researching health care. I have spoken to hundreds of employees and have heard their stories and frustrations in working in an ever expanding bureaucracy and top down management styles.

They have ideas on how to fix it if only we are willing to listen.

Richard Roy


Shattered glass floor of Western convictions

Dear Editor

No sooner did NATO send tanks, then Ukraine asked for F-16s and submarines. The “escalation-escalator” of war moves in one direction.

The great surprise that has so shaken U.S. expectations is, the completely unforeseen resilience displayed by the Russian economy, after the West committed the entire weight of its financial resources to crush Russia, the West bore down on Russia in every conceivable way, and yet Russia survived.

The American’s planners assured EU leaders “it’s was a slam dunk,” — Putin cannot survive financial and political collapse under the tsunami of Western sanctions. That theory has been upended, the West teeters under its own miscalculation that will collapse of its dollar-hegemony.

Joe Biden administration’s analysis, represents an intelligence-failure, on par with the non-existent Iraqi weapons of mass-destruction. And instead of critical re-examination, NATO leaders double-down, unable to exit the escalation-escalator, which deplete NATO military stock-piles, drives up prices, de-industrializes Europe and disregards the wishes of their own citizens.

Russia’s economic and military resilience has shattered the glass floor of Western-convictions about its ability to ‘manage-the-world.’ After several Western debacles, centered on regime-change by military shock and awe, even hardened U.S. neo-cons — by 2006 — had conceded that a weaponized financial system was the only means to secure empire.

However, the shock of miscalculation is great, because the West disdainfully thought Russia was a backwards economy, with a GDP on par to that of Spain.

But, unlike the Western financialized paper economies that have to borrow from foreigner investors to provide the financial-aid it now sends to Ukraine, Russia on the other hand is able to sustain a prolonged war of attrition without running out of munitions, because it has a real economy of production.

Unfortunately, war is the ultimate-leveler. A society’s well-being and overall long-term wealth is not determined by what the society can buy, but, by what it can make for itself.

Jon Peter Christoff

West Kelowna