The Page – June 1, 2022

We remember former premier Jason Kenney back when he was federal immigration minister. CBC-TV did a story on temporary foreign workers living 10 to a house. The house being owned by a restaurant owner who employed them all.
“Slum landlord!” and “Disgraceful!” crowed the CBC.
As they kept rolling out stories like this, Kenney finally collapsed the federal program allowing Canadian businesses to hire foreign workers. Except for some national food chains, of course.
By the way, 10 to a house was true. And common. It allowed workers to save money on rent and send more home to their families.
The upshot was, struggling businesses in the north, right across Canada, struggled mightily with staffing issues. Thanks, Jason.

“Those are my principles. If you don’t like them, I have others.” – Groucho Marx

Former public works Supt. at Big Lakes County, David Lainchbury, is well-known for his comments on local affairs. Lately, he has much to say about the quality of water in Lesser Slave Lake, and by extension, all water in all streams and rivers in the Peace Country.
Like many communities, including raw sewage is pumped through what is called the sanitary sewer system, sewer pipes, to a lagoon located outside the community, town, hamlet, village or whatever.
There the sewage essentially gets eaten by microbes and transformed through natural oxidation until “bad” microbes are transformed into “good” bugs. Sewage is mostly water and generally, the water simply evaporates. Leftover sludge sinks to the bottom of the lagoon. Eventually it is dredged out, or the lagoon is simply closed and a new one dug. In a major city, sewage is actually “treated” through mechanical processes that speed up what happens in the lagoons.
Once in awhile, rainfall or flooding can overflow the banks of the lagoon and leach into creeks and rivers. In a city, as has happened recently in both Montreal and Winnipeg, the treatment systems were overwhelmed due to flooding and rainfall. A lot of untreated sewage was simply dumped in nearby rivers. This is always a concern of First Nations, and many small communities, of which there are many in Canada downstream from big cities.
Anyway, Lainchbury is proposing a “half cup challenge.” He thinks local politicians and environment watchdogs, paid or otherwise, should drink a half-cup of water from streams, rivers and lakes. You know, just to prove everything is on the up and up with septic fields, lagoons, mounds and all the ways bad bugs can get into the water supply.
After all, people swim in this water.
Hmmm. Food for thought eh?

You ever get this message on your phone?
“This is a message from Service Canada. Your Social Security number has been suspended due to suspicious activity in your account. To discuss this with a representative, press ‘1’ on your phone.”
Something like that anyway. We usually just hang up. But once in awhile press ‘1’. The last time a pleasant fellow came on the line and said, “May I help you?”
We are thinking that is some kind of “get out of jail” free phrase. So we said, “No. Can I help you?” Click. The other end hung up. Tsk!
The real question is still, how do phone companies keep letting this happen?

Last week’s court story about a fellow bringing a can of bear spray into a local courtroom brought back an old memory.
Conservation officers one winter seized a string of fishing nets that seemed to be abandoned. The nets were not checked regularly, among other things. The cops waited for someone to finally appear, just in case. A fellow eventually showed up. He hauled in the nets with quite a few fish, both dead and alive. The cops charged him.
In court, the fellow denied over and over again the nets were his. He was just a Good Samaritan who happened to come across the nets. A lucky find! And of course, it would be bad to leave them in the water.
The judge tossed the case over no proof of ownership. As everybody was packing up, the fellow approached the bench and asked the judge, “Excuse me, but how do I get my nets back?”
After a few more words, the judge said, “Get out of here before somebody charges you again. Count yourself very lucky.”
Anyway, we are wondering if the bear spray fellow thought he was going to be mugged. Or attacked. No telling these days from what you see on TV. Probably it would be the court clerk. Or a really mean tape recorder.

“Bless Grandpa. He is as confused as a baby in a topless bar.” – Grandma Smithers

“Listen officer. Yes, it was me who called 911. It’s because the neighbour’s 18-year-old son is constantly banging his balls against our fence.” – Grandpa Jonesy

Have a great week!

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