Fan Mail 2019
Posted December 20, 2019
Readers this year were again generous with comments.
Some, including Liberals, agreed with the article that discussed Trudeau’s mishandling of the SNC file. But some partisan Liberals differed.
“Well, there are those who have been saying pretty much the opposite. There are two sides to the story, and I’ll wait until I hear more, thanks anyway…I’ve also heard folks saying there was Conservative collusion, if not master minding, with Stephen Harper’s fingerprints all over the place. This kind of divisive, deceptive, and negative politicking is not for me, and I believe it to be disruptive to the democratic process.”
“Your PC/Conservative bias is on display again. Hostile tribalism eliminates all credibility.”
Most writers liked the article supporting expanded scope of practice for nurse practitioners and other health professionals.
“My mother was a top NS nurse for forty years. She would have been very pleased by your defense of nurses…She thought many doctors should in fact be reporting to head nurses, especially new ones.”
Some suggested additional possibilities for expanded roles. Others interpreted the government’s action as part of a comprehensive attack on doctors.
A detailed study of the efforts to reduce ambulance congestion at emergency departments confirmed what many already believed about the NSHA’s structure. This from a front-line health care leader: “Since the NSHA has been created I have no idea who is in charge of what. There are so many layers of management, and senior directors and VP’s, all of whom seem to have overlapping duties, none of whom seem to want to make a decision.”
The crisp observation that all of the federal parties were losers in the October election drew lots of agreement. “Thank you. I like straight and direct. This was a great summary!” and, “You highlighted most of the reasons I, for the first time ever, held my nose and voted. I yearned for a box that said, ‘None of the above’.” Thanks to the reader who pointed out an error; I wrongly asserted that the NDP had won no seats in Edmonton.
The analysis of the Yarmouth Ferry concluded by wondering when one of the party leaders would “propose more productive ways to support the economy of Yarmouth and neighbouring communities.”
Nevertheless, it was viewed as an attack on rural Nova Scotia: “I feel that you / many more from the metro area / the Dexter Government all feel that the only important part of N. S. is the metro area and that the remaining parts of rural N. S. are not important and don’t deserve any financial assistance to help grow our part of the province,” and, “I am extremely annoyed over the Nov. 23 column Bill Black penned about the Yarmouth ferry service… his comparison is anything but scientific.”
Writers of opinion columns hope to influence the way people look at an issue, to stimulate discussion, and to every so often see the opinion reflected in government action.
If subsequent developments are aligned, the columnist should be glad but hesitant to assume cause and effect.
That said, 2019 was a gratifying year.
The April article supporting the government’s empowerment of nurse practitioners and urging that thinking to be applied elsewhere has been followed by additional steps to broaden scopes of practice, most recently with pharmacists.
The article about the Health Authority structure argued for wholesale rework to put decision-making authority as close as possible to the front lines of health care. Since then, a major change has been made, even before the arrival of the new CEO, to move budgets and many decisions to the four zones.
The post-election article recommended that Andrew Scheer should step down or call a leadership race before the Conservative Party’s leadership review scheduled for April. He has now done so, revealing other baggage that was not publicly known in October.
The late November article urging tight regulation on vaping was barely ahead of an announcement, no doubt long in the works, doing just that.
Thanks to readers for comments both critical and supportive. We share a common goal of making our province and our country better.
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