Dear Editor:

Our Free Enterprise System is the source of Canadas prosperity. Unions ensured that prosperity was passed on to workers and the population at large. Both of these systems are still working, but they are sick.

Once upon a time, the role of the corporate entity was two-fold. Firstly, it was to produce needed or wanted goods and services at a cost that was less than the value of inputed capital and labor. That difference was profit. Multiple entities and products provided consumer choice and regulated quality. Secondly, the entitys role was to provide employment and remuneration to the employees who produced and, in the broader community, purchased the product. With mechanization and computerization, the corporate dependency and obligation to its workers has been substantially reduced. Financial firms, again with overcomputerization, have manipulated our investment system such that far too much profit comes from non-productive paper shuffling.

Locally, the union movement I think still plays a strong role in the valley community and forestry industry. Unfortunately, in the broader perspective, the union movement has been corrupted by a major shift to government organizations. These are certainly not the undervalued wage sector of our society. Indeed, their role in government policy is substantially weakening our democracy. Our colleges and universities, with their vastly increased size, should have been adjusting society to the mechanized-computerized world, but have done more to fortify protesters than producers. Some answers, in my opinion anyhow.

Businesses need to reinvent their role of supporting their employees and the community. They are, after all, also their consumers. Post-secondary institutions need to be more, although not exclusively, focused on the practical needs of society. Large-scale profits from non-productive paper shuffling somehow needs to be limited.The power of government unions needs to be reduced and limited to employee welfare as opposed to government policy.

In conclusion, perhaps we need a legislated significantly better minimum wage such the lower wage level not currently focused on by unionsis more included in our society.

Walter Benstead