LtE bug

LETTER: A difference in oligarchs between B.C. and Russia

Oligarch — kind of a scary word and being used more and more frequently in news/press releases these days.

Correctly indicates the abuse of power and as is being evidenced by Russia currently, ‘absolute power corrupts absolutely.’ Under oligarch my dictionary shows “one of a small number of persons holding the ruling power.”

What a shameful travesty for any country to allow that to happen.

So here’s a little story of B.C. response to the oligarch system:

For many years my mother looked forwarded to her annual trip visiting with her B.C. family. This included 1986, so an excursion to Expo 86 had to be a priority. Off we go, tour all the amazing pavilions and save the B.C. building for last. Now my mum was a talker, friendly to all and never met a person she didn’t like. So on getting into the lift, mum ends up next to the elevator operator. A happy conversation takes place and as we reach the second floor the operator graciously wishes my mum – my mum – a happy day.

In return, “you’re a wee smasher, have a good day yourself.”

“Mum, do you know what that was?”

“No”

“Well his name is Jimmy Pattison and he is the person responsible for organizing Expo 86.”

Yes, there is our homegrown oligarch, operating the elevator, talking to all and sundry and working his buttinsky off for two years at a charged fee of one dollar per year. Tough but fair businessman, Mr. Pattison has donated huge amounts to worthy causes. And to quote Honest Ed Mirvish, “humbility is his style.”

Now 93 years old, I would back our compassionate oligarch anytime over Putin and his cronies.

Respectful thanks for all you do, Mr. Pattison. I hope you have enjoyed a life well-lived.

Wes Chaulk

Letter to the Editor