FEBRUARY 28, 2013
A love-hate or a hate-hate?

I never tire hearing your comments about government. Whether or not you follow politics is one thing, but everybody’s got an opinion.

Many of you that write in seem to be like me: you’re tuned into what goes on but you’re not really involved until you have to actually deal with the government. That’s often when your opinion changes.

The other day I got an email with the subject: “Government screwed my mother royally.” Who wouldn’t want to read more after that tease?

The story was about a woman upset with the treatment her 83-year-old mother got at the passport office when trying to get ID to travel to the U.S. The senior citizen was reportedly given a tough time and snotty answers. When asked what year she retired, the great-grandmother said she couldn’t remember, only to be handed a calculator and told to figure it out.

The elderly woman was sent to get another passport photo because her head was slightly tilted and unacceptable, according to the writer’s complaint.

“That’s how the government treats someone so fragile?” wrote Cheryl. “I can’t believe someone paid by my tax dollars could treat another human being like that.”

So, while the situation was unpleasant, I disagree with the thought the government screwed over the woman.

The government also receives praise from people. Shocking, isn’t it?

Martin wrote to me telling of how he was grateful foreign affairs stepped in when he was in the Middle East during, well, let’s call it political turmoil. He said the government contacted him and ensured his family’s safety and security while they were overseas.

“Thankfully nothing was wrong,” wrote Martin. “It’s just comforting to know they were aware of us and were keeping an eye out.”

And back to the land of complaints: Greg lost his job and the money is running out while Service Canada doddles to file his employment insurance claim.

“I’ve been out of work for 2 months, almost out of money and it’s been a headache,” wrote Greg. “They don’t tell you how to file reports, or the other stuff expected and then blame you when things aren’t done right.”

Greg said he only hears about holdups when he calls and a telephone agent informs him of the notes in his file, but insists the onus is on him to followup nearly every day.

As much as we grumble when we hear the dreaded E word (election), seems like it might be something to look forward to.
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