Left behind in leafy Langford; State funeral for WWI vet still an option; Is Afghanistan our Vietnam? Clark lost all credibility to comment; Caring pet store

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It was certainly a disappointment to check out the “storm cleanup” information on the City of Langford’s website.
No branch pickup available for residents after the wicked storms that have littered yards all over our city?
Numerous other municipalities offered many drop-off days and pick-up services to recover from the mess left behind by the storms. Even though this would be considered an unplanned and obviously unbudgeted expense, one would think that some kind of contingency fund could be found to assist with the cleanup process after all the attention we have had for beautification and decoration.
Oh well, back out to the yard jungle I go, after cruising through the yellow pages for private tree services.
V. Campbell
Langford
As director of programs for the Dominion Institute, I wanted to clarify some details related to your editorial published in the Goldstream Gazette on Jan. 5, 2007 regarding the state funeral for the last Great War veteran in Canada and hope you would be able to print a correction to the piece.
 As you will see from a Jan. 5 cbc.ca article and the Globe and Mail piece published Jan. 4, by no means has the idea of a state funeral been ruled out either by the families of the veterans or the federal government.
 To date, the option of a state funeral has not been offered by the minister of veterans affairs or the prime minister. Once the state funeral is offered to the family by the PM, it then becomes the decision of the family whether they accept the offer of not. The institute, and Canadians, will of course respect the decision.
 Please also refer to the institute’s position posted on our website www.dominion.ca.
 Jeremy Diamond
Director of Programs
History and Citizenship
 The Dominion Institute
Most Canadians support our troops, but, are we creating another Vietnam by having troops in Afghanistan? One only has to look at the history of the United States’ involvement in Vietnam and Iraq to see similarities. The United States in both cases do not have a clearly defined enemy. The Canadian troops in Afghanistan are tasked with a similar and impossible job of trying to differentiate between regular Afghan citizens and the Taliban fighters. Sending our troops into a war where there is no clear way to tell who the enemy combatants are is unnecessarily risking Canadian lives.
Bring our troops home and use diplomatic means to help solve the centuries old conflicts that the citizens of Afghanistan have been having.
Gordon Greenhow
Victoria
I thought that I had seen everything, but then to my astonishment I see Glen Clark,  “the master of B.C. Ferries’ disaster” publicly commenting on the current state of affairs.  A lot of things can be said about Clark, good and bad, but a lack of nerve isn’t one of them.
 All kidding aside, former Premier Clark does not have a lot of credibility on the ferry issue, especially after politically interfering to assist in commissioning the design-flawed and massively over-budget fast ferries. I never knew that being premier of the province came with a degree in shipbuilding.
 Political interference for quick political gain and everlasting legacy did not benefit the actual people who use the ferry system. If the decision to build new ferries had been left to the people who actually are trained in that area, the fast ferries would never have seen the light of day.
 B.C. Ferries today is a much better public asset than it ever was under Glen Clark and the NDP, primarily because there is no meddling from politicians in the operation of our ferry service. In my opinion, that’s the way it should stay.
 David Field
Burnaby
Canada needs disability legislation that allows disabled persons to live with dignity. I need your help to get the federal government to change the following policies:
• Change the Guaranteed Income Supplement eligibility requirements to include disabled persons whose income, regardless of the province they live in, is way below the low income cutoff, the “poverty level”, as determined by Statistics Canada.
• Make the GIS monies exempt from being clawed back by the provincial governments.
• Make the Canada Pension Plan disability benefits that a person has paid premiums for all their working life exempt from being clawed back by provincial governments the way that they are now.
If you believe that disabled persons are vulnerable financially, please e-mail the prime minister at harper.s@parl.gc.ca or write to: Office of the Prime Minister, 80 Wellington Street, Ottawa, ON, K1A OA2.
S. Malott
Red Deer, Alta.
I would like to thank the municipal employees of both Langford and Colwood for their dedication and time ensuring our city streets are clear and safe.  The past few months have brought almost daily challenges, taxing resources to the limits.  These people have selflessly given their time far over and above, working days and nights, giving up their own family and personal time.  As this is no doubt an often thankless job filled with endless complaints, I for one would like to say thank you! Chins up!
 Jennifer Smith
Victoria
I want to publicly thank Mark, the manager of the Millstream Village PetsMart, for his generosity during the recent windstorms. We lost power for four days, and he set up a separate boarding tank for my tropical fish, when my tank at home had cooled too much. Without his help they all would have died. He and his store are shining examples of generosity, care and concern, they will always have my business.
Vida Cox
Langford

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