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Jim Cumming - From the Publisher's Pen

Jim is the publisher of the Fort Frances Times Ltd. He writes a weekly column and can be contacted at jcumming@fortfrances.com

Give us a reason to vote

I am beginning to understand the U.S. Republican race to represent that party in the presidential election in 2016.

For the longest time, I could not understand how candidates like Donald Trump, Scott Walker, and Ted Cruz (a former Canadian) could develop a wide following supporting and funding their campaigns.

They all were saying things about people and immigrants that were politically incorrect. They all said they could not believe or support global warming because they were not scientists.

Do we elect a voiceless eunuch?

In Canada we are governed by the parliamentary system. Voters in each riding elect a person to represent them.

The Governor General of Canada offers the political party with the most elected members the opportunity to form the government.

Looking back in time, the local citizens of the riding paid far more attention to the candidates who were running, as well as to their abilities to represent the riding in Ottawa and respond to the needs of their constituency.

Another great ‘staycation’

This past week was our summer vacation.

Marnie and I had a “staycation” at our cottage on Rainy Lake. My eldest son, Brendan, arrived from Calgary on the Friday prior to Labour Day and joined us at the cottage with his cousin and new bride and aunt and uncle.

Jeff and his bride, Abby, returned to their home in Chicago on Wednesday morning. Then towards the end of the week, my brother-in-law and his son, both from Waterloo, joined us for a full three days of fishing.

Brendan enjoys fishing and was not disappointed fishing for multiple species around the cottage.

Icebreakers needed

What has happened to Stephen Harper’s commitment to build seven Arctic icebreakers back in 2007?

Why, in 2015, are we still waiting for just one Polar-class icebreaker to be ready for work in 2021?

The whole plan keeps being deferred as the need for more study in Ottawa continues to pile up meeting costs.

In the meantime, with global warming opening sea channels across Canada’s north, how will we maintain sovereignty over our northern area?

Indoor washroom long time coming

We have grown older. Our children have married beautiful women who do not appreciate the rustic cabin life, and now we are creating an indoor washroom at the cottage.

It probably has been long-imagined and began when my father purchased a Sun-Mar composting toilet in the early 1990s which he was going to install.

The toilet has been stored in original boxes under the cabin for almost 25 years. It will be used next year when the indoor facility is completed.

Electronic world fraught with peril

The saying goes something like this: what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.

What we are learning, however, is that what is written on the Internet has an infinite life span. It always can appear to be current. Whether it is texting, tweeting, or in an e-mail, the record lasts forever.

One might not have access to a full conversation that was being exchanged, but the words that are written often are taken out of context.

Reduce barriers

How difficult is it to do business across Canada?

If you are a corporation doing business across the country, you are faced with a variety of barriers with regards to provincial taxes, different provincial regulations regarding employment standards, different regulations regarding employment qualifications, and even problems moving parts between provinces for assembly.

Yet those same barriers with regard to manufactured goods or agricultural products are eliminated with 47 nations which Canada does business.

Be sure to take in fair

It is either the 115th or the 116th annual Rainy River Valley Agriculture Society fair. It is unclear if the fair began in 1900 or 1901.

The fair continues to be a tradition in the Rainy River District. Back then, Emo boomed at fair time as it does today.

When it began, farmers brought the very best of their animals to show and create future selling opportunities for breeding stock.

Homemakers put on display the very best of their needlework in dresses and quilts. The very best in baking was on display.

No place for negative ads

The federal election campaign for the Oct. 19 vote officially is underway.

Polls show the three major parties are in a neck-and-neck race, with 60 percent of eligible voter undecided and wavering between all three.

The electorate is volatile. Historic “safe” seats for the political parties may be up for grabs.

This election will prove interesting. And as recent provincial elections have shown, the decision of who voters actually will support will be made after the Thanksgiving weekend.

Enjoying nature’s tranquility

It was a hot weekend—and the heat is continuing this week.

Awakened by the roar of bass boats heading for their fishing haunts, I was enjoying the cooling small breeze that drifted through the windows of our cabin.

Rainy Lake and Turtle Island have been our family’s source for renewal on just about every weekend from ice-out through to late October. A weekend at the cottage often is better than a week-long vacation.