THE NATIONAL SCENE

TALKBACK

The west: who needs the east? / Ottawa’s Arts Centre: ‘nothing to be proud about’ / ‘Anne’: just good friends

September 1 1969
THE NATIONAL SCENE

TALKBACK

The west: who needs the east? / Ottawa’s Arts Centre: ‘nothing to be proud about’ / ‘Anne’: just good friends

September 1 1969

TALKBACK

The west: who needs the east? / Ottawa’s Arts Centre: ‘nothing to be proud about’ / ‘Anne’: just good friends

WALTER STEWART may hail from eastern Canada, but he tuned in to the western winds of discontent in his article, The Coming Showdown With The West. It is true! true! true! All of it! Having lived my life in Manitoba, I can attest to the deepseated resentment toward eastern Canada. And why not? What little we in the west begin is devoured by large concerns from the east. We bloomed under Diefenbaker. He was not a wise leader for Canada, but, oh God!, did it feel good to have a piece of the action for once!

E. FRANCES HENNING, WINNIPEG

* One cannot stress enough the seriousness of the situation and the strong separatist trend prevalent everywhere in the west.

MRS. W. SUDOM, PENSE, SASK.

* Confederation must go. The west has nothing to lose. If you cannot sail in an old boat, it doesn’t do you much good to love it. — CHESTER S. WENTZELL, MILTON, NS

I heartily agree with Showdown. I, too, am interested in bilingualism — which in my book does not mean French-English exclusively. - E. A. HALL, PENTICTON, BC

* If the west has the economic means, it had better get out fast — that is, if it wants to live as it is used to living, with all its English and American traditions and ordered democracy, and if it wants to quit handing its paycheque over to its expensive and selfish wife, the east. The French have taken over Ottawa and, therefore, the whole country. The Quebecker could assimilate with the Arab or the South American more easily than with the English. I have lived in Quebec most of my life, am part French and know what I’m talking about.

MARGARET SMITH, SHERBROOKE, QUE.

* Every fellow farmer I’ve talked to agrees with your article. The name of our new country will be B-A-S-M — the first letter of each province from west to east. Our capital will be Calgary, because of its central location, moderate climate and size. Let’s get started.

LYNN C. HUDSON, RIVERHURST, SASK.

* In this article you quote Prime Minister Trudeau’s remark to a Winnipeg meeting: “Why should I sell your wheat?” The advertisement headline on the following page provides a most apt answer: “You can’t run a business without getting behind the counter once in a while.” The western farmers might well provide their own answer at the next election: “Why should we vote for

you?” - V. A. BUDACHS, TORONTO

* You eastern sharpies know that dynamite is relatively harmless by itself and requires a capped fuse and a spark to set it off. The

fuse we need is a dynamic and personable leader, which at present we do not have. The spark will undoubtedly be provided by the east. All that is needed is for the Supreme Court to declare the languages bill to be constitutional or an amendment to the British North America Act making it so.

DALE HOLTSLANDER, EDMONTON

* It is unfortunate that the languages bill

has become embroiled in our predicament, creating the impression that western reaction is a type of backlash and little else. Prejudice is not the underlying cause of western discontent, and Stewart does a commendable job of outlining the real causes. Perhaps a part of the answer lies in more decentralization of the federal government to a form of regional administration in which four or five regions of Canada run their own show and bargain with the other regions in areas affecting the economy. - RAY HOWARD, BIRTLE, MAN.

* A lot of rot. We in the west have the best of Canada and we are prepared to give to the rest of our countrymen — and that includes Quebec, which many of us consider to be the only real island of Canadianism in a sea of Americanism. So stop distorting our opinions. - T. R. PARSONS,

WELLINGTON, VANCOUVER ISLAND

Culture palace: deplorable waste

Your article on Ottawa’s National Arts Centre, To An Aristocrat Building You A Culture Palace, What’s $46 million?, only confirms the deplorable waste of taxpayers’ money, while inflation and cost of living soar higher and higher. But as C. D. Howe once said, “What’s a million?”

DEAN J. KELLEY, OSHAWA, ONT.

* The National Arts Centre is a blessing for all Canada. It is a shame that this country has until now cared so little about cul-

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ture. In Europe people do not complain about paying taxes for an arts centre.

IRMA GREBZDE, POINTE CLAIRE, QUE.

* Those responsible for this “monument” have nothing whatever to be proud about. This is another of Bow-Tie Pearson’s follies. - E. BELL, REGINA BEACH, SASK.

‘Anne, my godchild’

In your lively story on the popularity of Anne of Green Gables in Japan (Good-by, Green Gables — Hello, Expo 70!), you refer to “Mavor Moore’s musical version.” The musical Anne, now happily appearing for its fifth season at the Charlottetown Festival and also running merrily in London’s West End, is an enterprise to which my contribution was very modest. I had the good fortune to commission the stage version for the first Charlottetown Festival (1965) from writer Donald Harron and composer Norman Campbell, and the good sense to hire Alan Lund to stage it. They are the true and onlie begetters. In Harron’s absence I also contributed three or four of the song lyrics — but although I wish she were mine, Anne is only my godchild. MAVOR MOORE, TORONTO

* Moore makes this remark about the critics’ criticism of the musical, Anne of Green Gables: “The Toronto Star’s Urjo Kareda called it ‘mediocre blah,’ ” that it caused him, as a Canadian, embarrassment. I have heard of the Toronto Star; but tell me, who the hell is Urjo Kareda, that his opinions of a great Canadian classic should be given prominence and credence? L. M. Montgomery’s people were salt-of-the-earth kind, and there are still people like them in Canada — thank God.

K. F. DEMPSEY BECK, SASKATOON

* My congratulations to Mavor Moore for his article, That All-Canadian Vanity — The

TALKBACK from page 15

Fear Of Being Thought Square — Is Stunting Our Artistic Success Abroad (The Lively Arts). He is the first person in all my 19 years who has really given Canadians the kick in the pants they deserve. If we don’t have faith in our talent, we will lose our identity.

MISS JAN HALPIN, PINE FALLS, MAN.

Name game

Re that chart in Philip Sykes’ July Books column: If it’s all the same to you, I’ll make my selection from side to side, rather than up and down. The titles alone make lovely lateral reading:

COLONEL SUN/COCKSURE/THE GOLDEN ASS HADRIAN VII/BEHIND THE BEYOND/ULYSSES COUPLES/BAROMETER RISING/ROAD TO WIGAN PIER PSYCHOPATHIA SEXUALIS/JUDITH HEARNE/USA MARSHALL MCLUHAN/THE INVISIBLE MAN

MRS. JEAN STEWART HANNANT, TORONTO

Get tost, Zolf

Larry Zolf’s pseudo-review of Goodbye, Columbus (Films) was as vulgar and tasteless as he finds the film.

ROBERT D. FOSTER, TORONTO

* Zolf seems far more interested in getting off his feeble little funnies than in telling readers what the movies are about. Let’s have someone less smart-alecky, please.

PHYLLIS RIVERA, TORONTO

Need for dissent

Your Editorial on McGill’s Stanley Gray, The Disturbing Backlash From The Campus Revolt, was the best thing I have read in your magazine for many a year. You have most clearly shown the need for thoughtful, concerned dissent, and the individual’s obligation to our society to effect dissent and offer new alternatives.

MRS. THERESA PADGHAM, CAMPBELL RIVER. BC

>k How many cultural grants were given by the Russian cultural council to Daniel and Sinyavsky, the Russian intellectuals who criticized their system in much the same way Gray has criticized ours? In actual fact, they are now expanding their minds in a Siberian prison.-M. N. W. ROBERTSON, BURFORD, ONT.

>k Why should support be limited to the academic types? Why should not other antiSystem types receive the same consideration? For instance, bank robbers are avowed enemies of the System, and some are thwarted on all sides in their most modest endeavors. - H. FRANCIS, LONDON, ONT.

Ontario at Expo 70

In his article on Expo 70, Alan Edmonds says, “Apart from British Columbia’s vested interest in Japan, it’s hard to explain the extent of Canada’s involvement in Expo 70 beyond the fact that the commitments were made in the flush of world’s fair fervor around the opening of Expo 67.” It was in February 1968 that Ontario decided to participate at Osaka — almost 10 months after Expo 67's opening. Ontario is participating because it is not yet getting much of a

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TALKBACK from page 74

share of the Japanese investment and purchases from our country, although Japan is Canada’s third trading partner and well on the way to becoming the second. As for Ontario’s exhibits at Osaka, Edmonds bypassed the facts. The new Christopher Chapman film will show the peoples of Ontario and the environments in which they live. The other audio-visual presentation will be a revolutionary multi-screen slide presentation that will show aspects of Ontario and its potential progress to the year 2000. As for the Japanese food described by Edmonds, tempura is not “mainly shrimp and squid.” This type of deep-fried cooking involves shrimps, yes, other fish and seafood, yes, and many vegetables from eggplant to lotus - root. But squid is an unusual ingredient, not a basic one. And Edmonds’ statement that only Quebec has a deputy commissioner, Normand (not “Armand”) Bernier, who knows Japan and Japanese ways is incorrect. Ontario also has a Japanese-speaking deputy commissioner—myself. FRANK MORITSUGU, EXECUTIVE OFFICER, SPECIAL PROJECTS AND PLANNING BRANCH, ONTARIO DEPT. OF TRADE AND DEVELOPMENT

Alan Edmonds replies: “1 think Mr. Moritsugu will find Ontario promised to be at Expo 70 months before it committed itself. I hope he’s right and the slide-presentation will be ‘revolutionary’ but, having studied the subject, I am not optimistic, because the ingenuity of the entire world is now devoted to Expo audio-visual projects. I did not say that only Quebec had a man who knows Japanese ways. I said they had the advantage of Mr. Bernier’s experience while living in Japan for six recent years of bewildering social changes.”

* Sukiyaki is not “beef shaved thin and dipped in boiling fat, à la fondue.” A light coating of fat is put on the bottom of the dish to get things started, then soy sauce, water and sugar are added, and it is in to this that the beef slices, leeks, mushrooms, Chinese cabbage, yam noodles and bean cakes are cooked (not dipped, by the way).

F. FOSTER, CALGARY

How they do it in Digby

Re Canada’s Top 10 Eating Places: I have always understood Digby Chickens to be ordinary smoked herring, not salt herring as stated in your article.

GARFIELD B. HAYDEN, DIGBY, NS

Reader Hayden knows his Chickens: smoked they are.

Train now, fly later — maybe

After reading the article on air-traffic control (We’re Cracking Up Down Here!) I canceled a holiday flight across Canada and am going by train. The Department of Transport should be reorganized, with a new head who would appreciate he is dealing with lives. This isn’t an area for “making do.” — P. L. GUNDERSON, CALGARY

sk Air Canada categorically denies the allegation made by author Walter Stewart: “In February, an Air Canada jet flew from one

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end of the country to the other at the wrong altitude, an altitude at which it could have met other traffic, but fortunately did not.” A thorough investigation by the Air Canada Flight Operations Department, as well as a detailed check by the Department of Transport in Ottawa, has failed to reveal that any such incident took place. — B. R.

CORMIER, MANAGER, INFORMATION BUREAU, AIR CANADA, MONTREAL

No war in Oromocto?

In his story on reaction of Oromocto, NB, shop owners to competition being presented by a Canadian Forces store two miles away (The Oromocto Merchants’ War With The Canadian Army, Reports) Gary Bannerman writes: “‘We’re damn well going to do something about it!’ vows Peter Rouleau, a haberdasher who’s president of Oromocto’s Board of Trade.” Mr. Rouleau does not speak for me or my business, or, to the best of my knowledge, for any other business in Oromocto except his own. Also, to the best of my knowledge, the Oromocto Board of Trade is inactive and has been for quite some time. The only time I’m “at war with the army” or anyone else is during a curling match or round of golf.

T. R. (ROLY) MOCKLER, OROMOCTO, NB

Trouble in Elk Valley

Roland Wild’s That “Rape" of Elk Valley Is Between Consenting Adults In Public (Reports) is misleading. Had it not been for some hard-driving conservation work by the BC Wildlife Federation, the controls Premier Bennett’s government is bragging about would not likely exist, for it was on Federation insistence that these controls are being set up. While the prospect of a $ 107million in mining payroll over 15 years sounds like a lot of money, the loss of tourist dollars may well exceed that figure. The people in Elk Valley are taking money out of one pocket and putting it in the other. Somewhere in between they are getting short-changed. — ANDY RUSSELL, WATERTON

LAKES NATIONAL PARK, ALTA.

Divorce: the woman pays

A vote of thanks to Douglas Marshall for his article, There’s No Such Thing As Easy Divorce. Some additional facts: The money a man pays in support of his children is tax deductible for him, but his ex-wife must add this amount to her annual income, even though the money is for her children, not herself. Also, if she must go to work and must obtain care for her children, the amount paid for this service is not tax deductible. The divorcee may have the same legal status as a widow, but she has not the same social status: widows are not regarded as second-class citizens. - DIANE C. BALLARD,

NOVA SCOTIA ASSOCIATION FOR ONE-PARENT FAMILIES, DARTMOUTH, NS

Heroes? What heroes?

In your article, Your Heroes And What They Tell About You, there is a slight oversight. Suppose you do not admire any of the "heroes” in the picture, what do the psychiatrists say about you?

IVAN GROVES, KINGSTON, ONT. □