May 29 1989


May 29 1989



Regarding “A questionable affair” (People, May 8), I am getting fed up with turning to your People section and seeing beautiful, partially or loosely clad women sensually posing for your fantasizing male readership. Give yourselves credit for drawing an intelligent, fantasizing female audience and give equal time to pictures of good-looking men. The men get 18-year-old Mandy Smith in her underwear and we get 53-year-old Dabney Coleman in a gaudy tie. Give us a break!

Elizabeth Barlow, Victoria


Charles Gordon points out that we are different from the Americans in our handling of the bus hijacking incident of Parliament Hill (“No one called in the helicopters,” Another View, May 1). We didn’t call in the helicopters. Thank you for the opportunity to add this difference to my rapidly shrinking list. I wonder how long it will take before there are no differences left.

Anne Lofting, Prince George, B.C.


Regarding your story about the sad death of our dog, Tiger (“Farewell to a friend,” Opening Notes, May 15): although this is a private family matter, there are two errors I would like to correct. The driver for the South Korean Embassy was not speeding and was in no way responsible for the accident; nor was there an RCMP investigation.

John Turner, Ottawa


Diane Francis’s column “A spectacular hand in a high-stakes game” (May 15) afforded readers a good summary of the energy options advisory committee report “Energy and Canadians Into the 21st Century.” Further, she correctly reports that the committee was doubtful about governments extending subsidies to uneconomic megaprojects for energy policy, as opposed to regional development policy, reasons. However, she misattributed the following quotation to me: “American and European diplomacy will be aimed at destabilizing the Persian Gulf area in order to keep the prices of imports low.” That is neither my nor the committee’s view. We believe that the dynamics of the market economy, both on the supply and on the demand side

of the oil equation, would suffice to mitigate all but the most extraordinary developments. We also think that the costs of government intervention—in any form—outweigh the risks of a laissez-faire approach.

Thomas Kierans, Chairman,

Energy options advisory committee


The rape and savaging of a professional woman by a “wilding” gang of minors is shocking (“The wilding of the vanities,” Column, May 8). However, to most observers of today’s society this outrage is not new. Rather, Allan Fotheringham has taken us beyond this sad event and has seized upon our total failure to reconcile the “haves” and “have-nots.” Many other civilizations throughout history have collapsed for this very reason. Fotheringham has written what may well become an epitaph to the 20th century.

Peter Jacob, Vancouver

We might in some instances be willing to overlook an act of raw evil on the grounds that the perpetrators were the disadvantaged poor, reduced to rage and despair. But this recent act of horror in New York is not one of those instances. Fotheringham’s description of these boys’ rage was very moving, but the fact is, there was no rage. Nor any remorse. Nor did they know their victim was a “capitalist.” This wasn’t protest or politics; this was “fun.”

Murray Polushin, Calgary


When I was in school, I was taught that the circumference of the Earth was approximately 40,000 km, yet in “One of the world’s biggest railways” (Column, May 1), Diane Francis states that CN owns “32,000 km of main-line track—enough to circle the globe more than twice.” Has the world shrunk that much in 35 years?

Charles Crockford, Waterloo, Ont.

Canadian railways have not chugged for a generation. Signal lights mutely stare at humming locomotives, their trains singing along welded rail; hardly a whistle or clickety-clack to be heard. Sure, mountain trains roar up and whine down, but recent reductions in gradient have diminished both. And inside, new soundproofed “crew comfort” cabs have eliminated shouting. It’s a quiet evolution, and puffery is proper, but not chug.

Thomas Mcllwraith, Mississauga, Ont.


Federal Finance Minister Michael Wilson may be “a fundamentally decent, intelligent . . . hard-working man” (“The hot spot on the Hill,” Cover, May 1), but he does not serve the ordinary people of

Canada. He serves the organized wealthy of the world, whose current agenda is to lower the expectations of working people throughout the world so that the rich can become even richer.

Frank Hollins, Chilliwack, B.C.

You report that some people are troubled that Finance Minister Wilson “has little in common with the average Canadian.” You also report that this average Canadian may be brewing a backlash against the restraint of Wilson’s budget. None of your writers, however, seems worried that the average unrestrained Canadian with the backlash tendencies has little in common with intellectually superior Canadians— whom Wilson represents. Apparently, understanding ordinariness is more important than understanding economics. With ideas like those rampant, it is no wonder that the average Canadian has racked up $13,000 in national debt, payable to someone with more sense.

Jens Andersen, Edmonton


I was shocked to read the letter in your May 1 issue singing the praises of William Vander Zalm (“More ‘goofy’ government”). If people would look any further than a spread sheet, they would realize that the balanced budget was

achieved at a terrible expense to the people of British Columbia. Our forestry industry is in potential ruin because a ministry fails to follow up on provincial regulations on forest management and reforestation guidelines. Postsecondary education fees are among the highest in Canada. Brutal years of restraint stripped necessary sectors of our economy during the 1980s, leaving essential services crying for funding. A surplus economy does not, contrary to popular belief, denote a healthy province.

Lesli Boldt, North Vancouver


Regarding the article “Death in the stands” (World, April 24), I was amazed at the criticism of the stadium layout, the “faulty crowd control,” the reaction of the police and several other accusations directed toward the authorities. When the facts are laid out on the table, it is the reaction of the fans that caused the tragedy. These people are obsessed with causing havoc around, in and outside the playing stadium. They are to be blamed for the deaths. Thank goodness we Canadians are not out of control when we support our teams.

Leanna Thornton, Calgary

Letters are edited and may be condensed. Writers should supply name, address and telephone number. Mail correspondence to-. Letters to the Editor, Maclean’s magazine, Maclean Hunter Bldg., 777 Bay St., Toronto, Ont. M5W1A7.