Priorities and promises, insults and blame seems to be a shared commodity served up in the midst of an election. The truth is we don’t have time for a political verbal joust. In our area three major issues have our attention. Encroaching fire, Covid-19, the environment – all concerns.
They are all connected in consort with the other issues we have paid lip service to or outright ignored. The economy, the health and well being of the population education and training and the state of the environment. Add to the list the drug addiction crisis, homelessness, a lack of affordable housing and a problem that goes on virtually unnoticed. It’s the shortage of trained workers. There are and have been job vacancies that don’t get filled because Canadians aren’t trained to do them.
Canada’s labor market is changing, what with rapid automation and artificial intelligence, and in some sectors a declining skill set. This has been a problem for more than a decade.
The economy, the environment, and the social well being are the measure of the nations health. Successive governments at all levels have shuffled the priorities and tinkered with the surface problems. It reminds me of the old saying “A Jack of all trades and a master of none.” So what do we do first and where do we start? Lets accept no matter which priority we start with it is going to cost a lot of money we don’t have. The biggest problem is the environment. For more than two centuries the world has poisoned itself with entitled pollution. If we don’t fix it we can’t secure health or a stable economy. When one mentions cleaning up the environment society goes on a fossil fuel rant.
We have to change our habits and look at a bigger picture. A comprehensive cleanup must consider farming practices, manufacturing, mining, water management, transportation of goods and services not to mention people. Harvesting our natural resources is another set of solutions required. All these are environmental concerns and at the same time connected to the health of the overall economy.
There is about to be a collision between supply and demand and what is considered in the interest of the public good when it comes to housing and affordable housing.
Yes our political system is adversarial but at some point it will require a national consensus . Partizan politics won’t count for much in the wake of polluted air, a shortage of potable water and dwindling food supplies.
The larger problem is the world over these issues have been neglected. The proof is in changing weather patterns, the severity of droughts, floods and storms. The question of how much will no longer be the question. The new questions will be how do we change the value chain models and how do we address the issues that threaten our survival on the planet?
To me slogans and promises don’t mean very much. I am looking for positive action when it comes to dealing with the mess we’ve created by dealing with the root causes at home and around the world. I am not naive enough to believe this will happen anytime soon.