It seems strange, but I remember when “unemployment” was introduced into the fishing communities of the Bay of Fundy. At that time, the storekeepers and family processors kept folks going through the winter if they had a bad season. For some it eventually meant disaster as family lands were lost to store bills, but overall the community took care of itself. THEN, when large corporations moved in and bought up all of the local family businesses it became precarious indeed. In fact many, if not all, fishermen found themselves in a hard life of servitude to the corporations as these companies pushed for the government labour support that they required in order to keep exploiting the fishery. Throughout these changing times the system of unemployment insurance or EI, to use the current politically correct term, provided the only, if meager, tool for survival and all of the reluctant Fundy fishermen soon gave in and joined the ranks … because they had no other choice.
Throughout all of these decades, I am here to attest to the destruction wrought by the government bureaucrats and politicians. But now it has reached a new level of nastiness after a decade of leadership by mainland “prairie boys” … the ones whose reformist leader clearly stated from the beginning … “There is a dependence in the region that breeds a culture of defeatism.”
That has always been untrue and this is known by anyone who knows the history of this place and has watched the bureaucratic dismantling of our livelihood, our families, our villages, and our towns. And still it continues. Watch and weep … again … all my relatives!
And now the west will feel the sting.