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Opinion

Benns’ Belief: A Poverty of Time

in Opinion by

Last month I watched the fantastic BBC eight-part series of Les Misérables on CBC Gem.

The miniseries is not based on the celebrated musical but rather the darker offering of Victor Hugo’s novel on 19th century urban France as it was on the cusp of revolution. Observing the working-class characters’ brutal lives got me thinking about “free time.”

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Basic income is needed to underpin a fairer society

in Opinion/Social Issues by
Basic income is needed to underpin a fairer society

The year 2020 has demonstrated why the expression “May you live in interesting times” is seen as a curse. As the world reeled under the loss of life, economic impacts and the removal of opportunities many of us have taken for granted, the desire to move back to more stable times has appeared attractive.

Yet the chaos we continue to live through also offers us a chance to reimagine the world we live in — to challenge the dominant presumptions we entered the pandemic with, and to implement new policies to ensure we build forward better.

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Benns’ Belief: Labour’s fight is our fight

in Opinion by
Labour

The full-time factory job that paid you a living wage in the early 1980s is a relic now. A person of the working class today or — dare I say it — those looking to join the middle class — cannot pay rent, buy food, have a car, or pay for insurance, and still have a little left over to feel human. That’s because, when accounting for inflation, real wages haven’t increased in nearly 40 years. People lurch from one gig job to another — and our youngest working generations have never experienced any other reality.

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We need climate change accountability with new bill before Parliament, says reader

in Letters to the Editor by

Imagine you create a budget. You want to eliminate wasteful, unhealthy spending in 10 years.  Maybe it’s omitting the cigarettes, or the weekly case of beer, or the family-sized packs of candy and cookies.  Then you put the kids, the smokers, and the beer drinkers in charge of monitoring your progress toward your goal.

And they don’t have to report on that progress for, oh, say 10 years – the year by which you want to have reached the goal.  And if they miss the target?  They just have to say:  Yup, we missed it.

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Liberal’s bill on conversion therapy is flawed, says reader

in Letters to the Editor by

Conversion therapy is an abhorrent practice that should be banned in Canada. I’m glad that MP Jamie Schmale recognizes this. (Schmale under fire for seeking guidance from constituents on outlawing conversion therapy.)

I am also thankful that he is engaging his constituents as to their thoughts on Bill C-6 (conversion therapy).

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Benns’ Belief: Revamp of employment services needed

in Opinion by
Benns’ Belief: Revamp of employment services needed

If there’s one consistent message I’ve heard from employers — both as a journalist, and as president of the Lindsay + District Chamber of Commerce — it’s that they’re having trouble finding the right people to work.

I don’t think Kawartha Lakes is unique. There are all kinds of barriers to employment everywhere, whether daycare needs, mental health, transportation lack of skills, disabilities and more.

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Recognizing the person behind the outstretched hand

in Letters to the Editor by

I appreciated Nancy Payne’s article on panhandling and felt that it was thoughtful and fair.

But one point worth adding is that it’s helpful to imagine things from the point of view of the panhandler.

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Happiness is derived from community: Perspectives from a remote African village

in Opinion by
Happiness is derived from community: Perspectives from a remote African village

As a new immigrant to Canada, with little knowledge of domestic waste management realities, hearing of the introduction of a producer-pays model in Ontario by 2023 is worth commending.

It was interesting to read that only 9 per cent of plastic waste is recycled nationwide in Canada. Data here shows that incinerators burn just about 5 per cent of the waste, emitting carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, and just over 61 per cent of kitchen and yard waste is composted while our landfills suck up the greatest portion (72 per cent) and are filling up faster than we may have ever expected.

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Amalgamation: All for one, one for all

in Editorials by
Farm country, Canadian Shield…anything but “cottage country”

Twenty years ago this month, Victoria County ceased to exist. In its place the City of Kawartha Lakes was born, as vast and rural as the county ever was, dotted with a postcard town and attractive villages.

As our municipal affairs writer, Kirk Winter, soon found when he put together this month’s feature story, the imposed single-tier amalgamation of Victoria County was a watershed moment in local municipal affairs.

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Caribbean scandal: An apology is not enough when the premier knew all along

in Opinion by
Former finance minister Rod Phillips was vacationing here in St. Barts while Premier Doug Ford knew about it.

It doesn’t take a political genius to realize that what the public may remember from the Rod Phillips scandal is that Premier Doug Ford, by his own admission, knew much more about his minister’s Caribbean trip than he first let on.

While the rest of Ontario was facing COVID-19 inspired travel restrictions, the premier did nothing to right the public relations disaster before it damaged both he and his government irreparably.

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