Thursday, April 3, 2008

Response to: Why RHIOs Aren't Working

I just read Mr Garets' article "Why RHIOs Aren't Working: Views from an American Who Can See White Rock, British Columbia, from His Backyard".

I was fascinated and, I assume, reliably informed of the systemic problems of RHIOs clarified by his analysis. Having a direct participant report is an irreplaceable antidote to information sources distorted by distance and perspective. Thank you for publishing it.

I wonder whether the author selected the title. If so, I think he might have had second thoughts about his views of Canada, when considering the metaphor (looking into a neighbour's yard across the fence) -- the grass always looks greener on the other side. The optical reason for that is that a side view of grass sees only what is sticking up, the greenly displayed part of the grass blades. The owner of the grass looks down at his feet where he stands, deeper down to the roots. All the dead grass and bare patches are painfully seen and felt. Side views are predictably false.

People like Michael Moore and, more moderately, your author might take that more into account when tempted to describe our extremely dysfunctional Canadian system in glowing terms. Apparently, the Americans have not yet figured out how to fix their system. We surely have not settled how to fix ours either. But let's be reasonable on both sides of the fence.

Robert C. Gordon PhD MBA
London Ontario Canada

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