Editorial – Trudeau finally gets serious

Jeff Burgar

“A billion here, a billion there, and pretty soon you are talking real money.”

An American senator gets credit for saying that. Apparently he didn’t really, but said it sounded so good he never bothered to deny it.

It does indeed sound good. The truth is, we humble average citizens usually do not trouble ourselves with thinking about such things. A billion dollars? A billion trees? A billion gallons of water? A billion acres? A billion fish or cattle? Even a billion people! A billion people is a bit less than the number of people in India [1.38 billion] or China at 1.439 billion people. The third most populated country in the world is the United States with 331 million or so. Canada is way down the list with 37 million people.

Last week, before the huge announcement on 75 per cent wage subsidies, our Canadian government said they will pump perhaps $105 billion into our economy. To help understand that, $105 billion is about $2,800 per person. This money may never reach your pocket, even if you need it.

We only mention it so we can compare our federal government response to that of our southern neighbour. There, they put together a $2 trillion support package for their economy. Which works out to $6,250 per person. Converted to Canadian dollars, the help in America is about $8,600 per person. Got that? $2,800 per Canadian. $8,600 per American.

With the new business support package, government aid to citizens starts to come into focus. The new plan is big. Sort of like bringing a bazooka to a knife fight. No guarantee it will all do the job needed but it sure as heck is more than what government started out with.

It’s a good start. Now, how about something about that $4.50 per barrel price of WCS oil?

The News is open

We’ve been reaching out to community leaders asking them to share any stories of what they or their group might be doing in this time of very great distress.

Anybody, if you have any local news, please contact us through our websites at smokyriverexpress .com or southpeacenews.com. We will pass on your information to our many readers, which are of course, very interested in what is happening.

Even if you think it might be trivial, you should not be surprised to know the general public out there really wants to know everything happening.

Plus of course, they want accurate information! That’s a commodity too often in short supply most days, including now.

If you are in business in northern Alberta, let us know what you think of the federal government programs announced last week. Is it good enough? Need more help? Tell people what you think through our discussion boards.

If you need information, we may be able to help you find it. Let us know. Please remember your discussions and comments are moderated, which means basically, keep it clean and keep it honest.

Stay safe.

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