In defence of the government

Resident stands by the activities of the Conservative Party

Richard Rolke’s recent column, No decorum at the forum, is a sad reflection on what NDP, Liberal and Green party supporters consider a rational and open debate on the party policies being presented in the current federal election. Emotions, rather than critical thinking, seem to be the main contributor to what Rolke identifies as their childish behaviour.

Unfortunately, the emotions being so freely displayed are too often based on spin, half-truths, facts taken out of context and blatant misrepresentation of many of the Conservative government’s actions while they have been in power.

They have been far from perfect but in spite of the other parties’ claims to the contrary, they have enabled Canada to better withstand these turbulent times than most countries in a world beset by ever increasing economic and security problems.

As a veteran with 35 years of service in the Canadian army, I would like to dispel one of the current half-truths being spun by the opposition and media, the one where all veterans have been poorly served by the Conservative government.

Not only am I veteran but so is my brother and both my parents, and my wife’s parents are Second World War veterans. Not one of us would complain about the service provided by Veterans’ Affairs.

There have been some problems, particularly with giving disabled soldiers a lump sum of money rather than a pension, but these issues have been recognized and are being rectified through practical measures.

These measures should not include reopening under utilized Veterans’ Affairs centres to deal with a dwindling client base as the funds can be used much more efficiently in providing necessary services for those most in need of them.

During my service, I had the privilege of taking studies on geopolitical and economic matters in Canada, the U.K., Australia and the U.S.

This experience makes me realize that many of the NDP, Liberal and Green policies on these issues are at best wishful thinking and at worst will be detrimental to a prosperous and secure Canada in the future.

Stand firm Mr. Arnold and don’t buckle under the pressure of dealing with hostile audiences as Rolke suggests you might do. Overall, the Conservative Party’s policies are much more likely to successfully deal with future challenges our country will face than anything else on offer. The Canadian electorate would be wise to spurn unrealistic promises of getting something for nothing and realizing that bigger government never provides effective, long-term solutions.

Mike Newman