Today's date: Tuesday July 25, 2017 Vol 50 Issue 29
   
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The Wellington Advertiser encourages letters to the editor.
You may, if you wish, submit your letter online.

Not a trailer park

Dear Editor:

RE: Your front page article and page seven photo about the recent fire in the Mini Lakes Community.

Mini Lakes has not been a trailer park for over 20 years.  

We are a resident-owned community, with condominium common elements. The homes in Mini Lakes, are not trailers, but modular homes.  We are a completely self sufficient community with our own water treatment plant and sewage facility. We do not rely on the township for garbage disposal. We have worked hard to eliminate the word “trailer” from our name, but now find the Advertiser has reincarnated it.

We, as a community, are very thankful for the firefighters from Puslinch, Guelph and Rockwood, and all the help services that showed up to fight the fire on July 7, and support the individuals whose homes were destroyed and damaged. Without these dedicated people, we would truly be in a far worse place.

I have been enjoying the Wellington Advertiser for the 31 years I have been in the Mini Lakes Community.  It gives a wonderful update to the Wellington community. The Puslinch council updates help keep me informed of what is happening in my township. Keep up the good work, but please do not refer to us as a trailer park in the future.

Conny Budarick, PUSLINCH

OPINION: Rising interest rates will hurt young families especially

Over the past few months, the Bank of Canada has faced a terrible dilemma: keep interest rates low or raise them to combat potential inflation.

It seems the decision has been made - on July 12, the bank raised interest rates for the first time since the 2008 financial crisis.

If this is the start of a trend and not a temporary aberration, then Canadians can expect considerably higher borrowing costs in future.

You don’t have to be an economist to know that rising interest rates will hurt a lot of Canadians. And you don’t have to be a sociologist to know that, demographically, young families are going to be hurt the most.

Many economists believe the bank created the debt problem. Canadians have been on a debt binge since interest rates dropped to near zero after the financial crisis. The total debt-to-gross-domestic-product (GDP) ratio in Canada has increased to over 350 per cent. In other words, Canadians are up to their eyeballs in debt.

There’s also been a considerable rise in government-related debt.

And a lot of debt is being used for consumption - Canadians keep spending whether or not they have income to support their lifestyles.

However, the largest part of the debt is the result of the out-of-control housing market.

According to Deutsche Bank, the Canadian housing market is wildly out of sync with Canadians’ ability to pay. They put the housing market over-valuation at 63 per cent. The Economist has similar fears about Canada’s housing market, which it estimates is 75 per cent over-valued when compared to rents.

There are two main causes of this distortion in the housing market. Yes, ultra-low interest rates contribute to the problem. But foreign buyers (mostly Asian) are driving up prices in key urban centres. Foreign buyers have been particularly active in the Vancouver and Toronto real estate market.

Why are foreign buyers buying property in Canada?

Consider China. Many Chinese families have accumulated considerable wealth through the economic revolution that Chinese authorities call “market socialism.”

But China’s government remains stridently communist and authoritarian. Whatever the internal virtues of this one-party state, China is seen by many of its own citizens as a dangerous place to keep their money.

So sensible Chinese families are getting their money out by any means possible and investing in more stable economies like Canada’s.

What was a trickle of foreign investment a decade ago has become a flood. By some estimates, China will export more than $1 trillion of real estate-bound investment in the next decade. Roughly 10 per cent or $100 billion of this is earmarked for Canada.

Massive foreign investment distorts the domestic housing market, imposing double-digit inflation on housing in largely stagnant economies. And this forces buyers (young, first-time buyers in particular) to assume vastly greater debt than they otherwise would have to.

Up to 25 per cent of present mortgage holders would lose their homes if interest rates returned to historical norms. A majority of young, first-time homebuyers would be severely compromised by rate rises. And unlike U.S. property markets, a mortgage in Canada is recourse, which has to do has to do with which assets a lender can go after if a borrower fails to repay a loan; in other words, you can’t just walk away from an underwater mortgage.

How did such a dangerous situation come to pass?

There are some fundamental flaws in our economic thinking. Apart from seriously unbalanced international trade deals, the Bank of Canada is accepting the false logic that raising interest rates is the best way to head off inflation. This mistake could trigger a recessionary spiral that rapidly gets out of control.

Many young Canadians have bought into the homily that if they get a university education, they’ll be on their way to middle-class respectability.

They’re about to discover that respectability comes with massive student debts and, presuming they want to buy a house, an enormous (and potentially fatal) home mortgage.

The cycles of crisis in modern capitalism are as regular as clockwork. It’s a myth that we’ve solved them.

Regrettably, thanks to the Bank of Canada, the most highly educated generation of young people in our history is about to discover that truth the hard way.

Robert McGarvey is chief strategist for Troy Media Digital Solutions Ltd., an economic historian and former managing director of U.K.-based Merlin Consulting.

Robert McGarvey, EDMONTON

The Lord’s judgment?

Dear Editor:

RE: Devine retribution, July 7.

Mr. Ellis, I believe, has wisely stated a truth about our climate that has not been acknowledged by our politicians, scientists and weather forecasters. The God of Creation is in control of weather.

Jeremiah 10:10 states, “But the Lord is the true God, He is the living God and the everlasting King, at his wrath the Earth shall tremble and the nations shall not be able to abide his threatening.”

Jesus informed the apostles that before the great day of His return to Earth, “You shall hear of wars and rumors of wars ... Nation shall rise against nation and kingdom (Satan’s) against kingdom (God’s) and there shall be pestilences, famines and earthquakes in places” (St Mathew 24:6-7).

Jeremiah 10:13 says. “At his voice He giveth a multitude of waters in the heaven and lifteth up the clouds from the ends of the earth. He maketh the lightening for rain and bringeth forth the wind for his treasures.” Most people are familiar with Jesus calming the sea when the apostles feared for their lives. One command from God and the wind obeyed and there came a great calm (St. Mathew 8:26).

Jesus is the just judge. It states in Proverbs 29:2, “when the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice; Jesus will cause justice and righteousness to saturate the land.”

I ask you, Is it right to kill the most defenseless in your land, force citizens to accept laws contrary to God’s commandments yet remain silent or go to jail as Linda Gibbons and Mary Wagner have done for years?

The Ten Commandments apply today as they did in Moses’ time. As Jesus, himself said,  he did not come to destroy the law or the prophets, but to fulfill (St. Mathew 5:17).

Pestilences such as AIDS, cancer, lyme disease and others have become prevalent, famines have spread and earthquakes and turbulent weather are more common.

Is this part of the Lord’s judgment? It would seem so to me.

Pat Woode, FERGUS

‘Colossal stupidity’

Dear Editor:

RE: Dog and pony show, July 14.

 To be sure, “a cunning array of stunts” by Mr. Trudeau.

I fear that Canada, as is continuing to happen in Europe, is purposely orchestrating its own demise under his so-called leadership.

As we speak, votes are pouring over the Manitoba border, the RCMP, little more than bell hops carrying the luggage!

The Mississauga-Erin Mills MP of Doublespeak is attempting to stop free speech with M-103.

Our Minister of Immigration/Citizenship from York-South Weston hails from the failed anarchy that is Somalia.

Trudeau secretly meets with the Aga Khan in his luxurious private fiefdom.

Khadr’s bribe should bring in at least another 10.5 million votes!

Meanwhile, Khadr grins at our colossal stupidity and carries on with his studies to become a nurse, and Trudeau flips pancakes at the Stampede saying the payoff “was the right thing to do.” Yikes!

Doreen Henschel, ROCKWOOD

‘Sub-standard’ plan

Dear Editor:

RE: One more bed, July 14.

Patricia Fimio’s excellent letter about the one-bed increase in the new Groves hospital over the existing hospital (44 to 45 beds) is both timely and alarming.

The population of Fergus is above 20,000 and is expected to rise to 40,000 by 2040. The World Health Organization recommends five beds per 1,000 of population. Forty five beds is not even 50% of what is currently required and a mere 25% of what we will need in 2040.

Sadly, this sub-standard performance is nothing new. In 2011 Canada ranked a poor 30th on a list of OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development)countries with a mere 2.7 beds per 1,000 - just ahead of Turkey. Japan topped the list with 13.6.

The people of Fergus/Elora should be howling with outrage. We deserve better.

Harry Barrett, FERGUS

ReliableFord

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Wellington North Guide 2017-2018

BUZZ

Tenders approved for Colborne St. reconstruction and replacement of 27WG bridge
Next phase of Hanlon Expressway upgrades underway
Farewell open house held for Elora Gorge Cinema owners; new owners have local connection
Clarification on description of Mini Lakes community
Milton farmhouse added to growing suspicious fires list
Precaution urged at Conestogo Lake due to possible presence of blue-green algae
Fareed Haque and Goran Ivanovic heading to Guelph
Police issue warrant for clumsy Walmart shoplifter

COLUMNISTS

Olivia Rutt and Jaime Myslik
Stephen Thorning - 1949-2015
Kelly Waterhouse

EDITORIAL

Chris Daponte: Spare us the spin

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