JOHN TWIGG – That's a long way from a nine-year-old boy hearing a bridge collapse 62 years ago ... but the events ARE connected
collapse of the then-under-construction Second Narrows bridge in Vancouver in 1958, which killed 18 Ironworkers (a 19th victim was a diver seeking to recover bodies afterwards) and was an event I heard while playing outside my home in West Vancouver many miles away; I was only nine years old at the time and it was my first exposure to human-caused mass disasters but unfortunately it was not the last.
Eventually we learned the bridge collapse happened because a design engineer had underestimated the load-bearing capacity of a steel spar from which a crane was placing beams to connect the north and south sides of the major construction project, which was eventually completed and is now called the Ironworkers Memorial Bridge.
Since then I have become somewhat inured to such mass disasters, as have many people nowadays, because there seem to have been so many of them, notably the 9/11 attack on the Twin Towers, like numerous plane crashes around the world (some caused by terrorists, others by hostile forces and some by sheer accidents) and more e.g. the many shooting sprees by various deranged individuals, even several here in Canada in recent years.
And now we're all struggling to cope with what we call the COVID-19 crisis in which a new and deadly form of the Corona virus has become a global pandemic killing thousands of people, including 168 individuals here in British Columbia (which is a relatively low proportion compared with other jurisdictions).
To put that in some perspective, here's what the leftist news service Press Progress just reported about the COVID toll in the United States: "The U.S. coronavirus death toll - approximately 117,000 - just surpassed the number of American troops killed during World War I."
COVID crisis has triggered race wars
Furthermore the COVID crisis in the U.S. has morphed into a race war as the stresses of coping with the virus exacerbated racial tensions that probably contributed to an uptick in police-involved shootings of black and indigenous people and other police conflicts with them which led black and native activists to establish no-go territories in several locations, perhaps most notably one in Seattle covering several downtown blocks in which black people are walking around with openly-carried rifles, which is a de facto enclave of anarchy they first called CHAZ for Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone and now are calling CHOP for Capitol Hill Occupied Protest.
In fact racial tensions are nothing new in U.S. history but they are perhaps too easily exaggerated for political gain and the actual history is not as bad as many claim or assume, such as Abraham Lincoln as President fighting a war against slavery, and the British - also widely seen as racists - were also in the forefront of ending slavery even back in the era of sailing ships, which you can read about here. For example, several major food companies are withdrawing black-themed food products such as Aunt Jemima pancake syrup because its label features a black woman even though the product was actually created by a black woman.)
We're seeing evidence of such tensions here in Canada too with several Black Lives Matter and First Nations demonstrations having been held in response to some supposedly heightened responses by some RCMP in situations involving First Nations people which apparently caused federal NDP leader Jagmeet Singh to try to get an emergency motion about it onto the Order Paper in Parliament but then he got ejected from Parliament because he called a Bloc Quebec MP a racist after the BQ guy (the party's House Leader) refused to give unanimous assent for Singh to move the motion because the BQ MP felt it in effect tried to brand all RCMP members as racists.
B.C. govt launches economic policy process
So yes we ARE living in "interesting times" (as the old curse says) and there's little prospect of such race-based tensions going away, though here in B.C. the NDP provincial government of Premier John Horgan has been mindful to include First Nations wish-lists in their policy agenda - a new opus of which also was unveiled today inviting British Columbians to participate in a new policy-making process for the post-COVID recovery.
According to B.C. Finance Minister Carole James, the B.C. economy has lost 314,000 jobs since February, most of them due to COVID factors, with job losses especially deep in the services sector, so the government out of necessity is newly open to new and different approaches to job creation. (To learn more about B.C.'s economic recovery planning visit http://gov.bc.ca/recoveryideas and for B.C.'s Restart Plan, visit: http://gov.bc.ca/restartbc)
Meanwhile the news reports that China and India, the two largest nations in the world, are having another border feud in the Himalayas with troops throwing rocks and punches and even some bullets at each other, which is just one of several instances in which China is more and more playing the bully, such as today's news that some of B.C.'s raw-log exports to China have been penalized ostensibly because some bugs were found in the wood, but the real story (as many surmise) is that it's the Chinese communist government's reprisal for Canada having arrested Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou.
Canada fails to get UN Security Council seat
That sentiment by China towards Canada probably contributed to the Trudeau government's failure yesterday to win a seat on the United Nations Security Council, with the seats instead going to Norway and Ireland. (Some news reports suggested China had been persuading its client nations in Africa and elsewhere to vote against Canada getting such a seat, ostensibly because Canada is seen to be too much of an acolyte of the United States in general and of President Donald Trump in particular.)
In this realm the hypocrisies are huge but the realities behind them may be even worse and the challenges ahead of us probably even moreso such as widespread collapses of social order as governments around the world run out of money and then security, and as even prosperous democracies lose their will and power to act to maintain social order.
It thus is all the more timely that the Horgan regime, albeit out of necessity, is seeking policy input on what to do not only from the usual paid experts but also from the general public, actual voting and tax-paying citizens as well as business operators, and I for one will be sending in suggestions for things like food self-sufficiency, bulk water exports [B.C. has huge surpluses], restarting a B.C.-based currency and other seemingly radical changes needed (e.g. cracking down on the illegal drug trade, incarcerating the worst offenders, providing security for homeless camps) in what will surely become even more turbulent times.
Another useful perspective on B.C.'s challenges is provided in a profile of NDP MLA Bowinn Ma in an article yesterday from The Tyee news service - she's the youngest MLA in the B.C. Legislature (which resumes sitting next Monday, June 22) and one of the brightest: we're in an imperfect world striving to be perfect, she says.
I mention all this in some detail because we're all in this together and Bible prophecies are remarkably showing clearer and clearer that what we are facing now was predicted with stunning accuracy two and three thousand years ago, which to me suggests that such warnings should be taken all the more seriously now that we see more and more evidence of such prophecies coming true.
There IS good news, that the entity we call Jesus actually will return to prevent mankind from wiping itself out, but it's a shame that humanity can't understand it all and then take steps beforehand to avoid a global nuclear war that will decimate two-thirds of humanity and 90 per cent of the modern-day Anglophone Israelites - that latter group is us, the British and American peoples and not only the Jews as is widely and wrongly believed (see Isaiah 6:13, Amos 5:3, Ezekiel 5:12, Zechariah 13:8, Matthew 24, Luke 21, Revelation 6:8 and 9:13-18 ).
That's a long way from a nine-year-old boy hearing a bridge collapse 62 years ago but the events ARE connected: our societies are facing ever-greater challenges and disasters and the time we have left to avoid them is drawing shorter.
But here in B.C. we are very fortunate to have a new opportunity now to develop policies and strategies that could help the majority of British Columbians survive not only the present pandemic but also the even greater global cataclysms to come (and no "global warming" is NOT a real part of that scenario and if anything we will suffer from global cooling).
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John Twigg ... is a veteran independent journalist now based in Campbell River.