Postscript: On language, shifting platforms and truth in advertising
Published Sunday, February 12, 2012 6:47PM EST
Last Updated Wednesday, June 6, 2012 5:06PM EDT
One of best things about living here is we get to enjoy two main cultures.
Sure, there are irritants over language and sometimes the separatist "tongue troopers" try to make Anglos feel like second class citizens. Sometimes it feels we are under siege.
But on a daily basis, we do get along. So it bothered me this week when an online video appeared that spliced together clips to make fun of Francois Legault's ability to speak English.
Now the creators of this didn't have the courage to put their names to it. The CAQ leader suspects it may be dirty tricks from other parties. And he is probably right.
The fact is there is nothing wrong with the way Legault speaks English. It's not perfect. But so what? How many of us are flawless in the other tongue?
How many of us have struggled to learn and finally got the courage to throw caution to the wind and then dove in head first? We've all made mistakes in grammar, syntax and translation.
And we can all laugh about it. And there's no harm because trying is what it's all about.
So this mockery is totally out of line. And for me, an embarrassment as an English speaking Quebecer
There are plenty of targets to take aim at, such as an Education Minister who doesn't speak English, and the malcontents who treat English as if it were a pestiferous virus. But Mr. Legault is certainly not deserving of such an attack.
When the Harper Tories campaigned last spring, there was nary a mention of tinkering with retirement age and old age security. I couldn't find it anywhere in the Conservative platform.
But surprise. Tinker tinker.
And that's what makes people angry. Hidden agendas. Canadians didn't vote for that.
Should we have a national conversation about retirement and benefits and who will pay to support an increasing number of retirees? Absolutely. The real problem though is many Canadians still cannot be bothered to plan for retirement.
So yes, a debate is needed. Perhaps we could even include a look those gold plated
Pension plans of MPs. But I'm pretty sure that one will never be on the table.
Truth in advertising
Finally, this week, a victory for truth in advertising.
Air Canada is going to tell us up front how much it really costs to get from A to B.
"All in" airfares include taxes and fees and surcharges.
So no more sucking us in with 99 dollar flights to Florida which really ended up costing 400 dollars.
Not sure if Air Canada and West jet and the others are doing this out of some sense of higher purpose or because Ottawa will be forcing them to do it anyway.
An air Canada spokesman says "it's a response to our customers' increased desire for transparency and simplicity when shopping for airfares." Really?
All of a sudden? Not sure that explanation really flies.