Editorials

Early Morning Rumble

Wednesday, November 28, 2012   by: Bill WaltonAt first I thought it was one of those seismic events that rock the ground every once in a while. The earth shifting under some fault like the Denali or Queen Charlotte fault is more common than the Ottawa-Bonnechere Graben fault that rattles us on occasion. Usually right after another Omnibus Bill passes gas in Ottawa.

While my house actually vibrated with the rumble, it was nothing more than a city snowplow bouncing and banging along our smooth city street at 6:00 a.m. There is nothing like that rumble to encourage you to rise before dawn, have a leisurely breakfast and a couple of cups of coffee while you consider when you should shovel or blow the snow from the driveway. Of course one must gauge the wind direction, the temperature, cloud cover and consult the weather channel to make certain the snow has ended before venturing outdoors. There is little point on clearing the snow away if more is coming or that snowplow might return and dump another windrow across your driveway.

The encouraging thing about seeing (or hearing) a snowplow or sander at this time of year is that you get to see your municipal tax dollars at work. If you are fortunate enough to have missed the construction season on your street, watermain breaks, pot-hole patchers or the busy team that installs four-way stop signs during the summer, you might give a wave of the hand to the truck drivers. Wave even if they have put that fresh row of snow and ice chunks on your driveway – if you are wearing your heavy winter mittens they cannot see how many figures you are displaying.

However, back to those faults. Years ago I had occasion to venture down into the Bonnechere caves near Eganville. Had the web been around then, I would have Googled the place before I went underground over an earthquake prone area and likely reconsidered the venture. Then again, I was young and invincible and would have done it anyway. My reference to the Omnibus Bill causing rumbles does bear some consideration. Stacking all sorts of legislation onto a 443 page Budget Bill as a way to change the Fisheries Act, the Indian Act, the Canada labour Code, the Canada Shipping Act, the Customs Act as well as gutting the Navigable Waters Act, killing the tribunals that looked at such mundane things as the Hazardous Materials in the Workplace is enough to cause rumbles well outside the Ottawa area.

Omnibus Bills do have their place. For instance, if Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi had used one to make his sweeping changes all those protestors would still be at home trying to decipher the legislation instead of protesting in the square. It worked for Harper.

On another note, you might be interested in looking at the PhotoShow on my homepage entitled ‘Marina Closed for the Season’ – www.daisywheelpress.com

Gotta go shovel . . .
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