Steady as she goes, Captain. QB is on the right course

There's no need for dramatic change in Qualicum Beach

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. That axiom seems to me a good rule for living.

Municipal elections will be held on November 19. In the days leading up to this column, we have had a half-dozen well-meaning people dropping off campaign literature at our door containing all sorts of pledges.

I hate that word in a political context, it’s thrown around loosely and it means nothing when reality strikes.

In political parlance it’s called boilerplate, hackneyed phrases that have been used from the time of the ancient Greek democracy.

Enough already.

Like many townies, I’m immensely  proud of our picturesque oasis set amid a continent seemingly intent on destroying all things gracious and resident-friendly in the pressure to make everything bigger, more profitable, more sprawling with more roads and traffic and congestion.

And who are the beneficiaries of this new Valhalla?

Not you and me, brothers and sisters.

Am I advocating stagnation? Of course not. 

Although I have never heard Qualicum Beach described this way, it’s time to face the fact that our QB is a retirement area. All one has to do to confirm this fact is stroll through the centre of town.

Far from being lamented, we should celebrate that we are in good company. Throughout the world  there are other towns and even cities proud to call themselves retirement havens.

At this point in the t21st century, we are just beginning to feel the coming tidal wave of baby boomers looking for a place to settle down and begin enjoying leisure time with the money to indulge themselves. This fact alone should be enough to satisfy the chamber of commerce folks.

There is a lot of opportunities to service a comparatively well-off population with all the needs of a mature population. Please note I didn’t use the word elderly. Ahem.

The demographic profile of retirees is changing with the times. It’s no longer the rigid rule of age 65 you’re gone and good luck. Here’s a watch.

Freedom at 55 is the new slogan. Those vigorous retirees living in expensive homes on the mainland can sell up and move into comparable or better homes in more rural or less densely populated areas taking lots of extra money with them.

Welcome to the Island folks, where a call to Eden is not long distance and the Strait of Georgia is considered by some to be a defensive moat.

Coming back to boilerplate, we also hear words like transparency, leadership, listening, effective, cost and tax cutting.

All these words imply that the incumbent has none of these characteristics or achievements.

Look around you. Do you like what you see?

Look at your tax bill. Apart from our common dislike of paying taxes, can anyone honestly say that our taxes are the result of profligate and careless spending?

Under the wise stewardship of honest, far-seeing men like Art Skipsey, Jack Collins, Bill Luchtmeijer and Teunis Westbroek our town has evolved into the jewel admired by all.

Steady as she goes Captain Westbroek. You are right on course.

Having just marked Remembrance Day, I had thought of writing something fitting for the occasion but, on second thought, I felt reminding all of us that we have the privilege of voting because so many Canadians died in two world wars, Korea and Afghanistan.

They ensured we would have the right to vote.

Is there any more fitting way to honour their sacrifice than to use the legacy they left us by voting freely and without fear of retribution from tyrants?

 

 

 

 

— Harvey Dorval is a regular News columnist. He lives in Qualicum Beach.

 

 

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