Thursday, October 27, 2005

They're just not that into us

Cherniak is right: the U.S. Ambassador to Canada doesn't "get" Canada. For over a month now, David Wilkins has been our there pushing the softwood-dispute-as-domestic-politics meme. As if! This isn't like the States, where they regularly hold paralyzing year+ election campaigns. Sure we're in an election-esque mode but that's just 'cause of the fragility of minority governments. The sad part: this "don't get so emotional baby" message is seeping into U.S. media coverage of our grievances. I could have screamed last night when I saw this on CNN. Lou Dobbs took a short break from his regularly scheduled xenophobia to indulge in some cartoonishly insulting discussion of our trade disputes (angry-bold-emphasis mine):

[click "Read on, MacDuff!" to continue reading]

DOBBS: The United States tonight is also locked in a bitter trade dispute with Canada. A dispute that is raising new questions about Canada's reliability as an American ally. This dispute, and we're not making light of it, is over the lumber trade. And it follows Canada's threat to divert oil away from the United States to China. It also comes after disagreements over the war in Iraq, border security and missile defense. Kitty Pilgrim has the story. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KITTY PILGRIM, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Protesters in Canada call Condoleezza Rice a war criminal. She was also under fire on the issue of trade. Canadians said the U.S. can't be trusted.
[Canadian] REPORTER: How are other countries around the world going to be able to trust the word of the United States on anything?
PILGRIM: She called for
a little perspective. [Grrrrr!!!!]
CONDOLEEZZA RICE, SECRETARY OF STATE: I think the word of the United States has been as good as gold in it's international dealings and it's agreements. I think it's extremely important not to speak in apocalyptical language about this issue.
PILGRIM: U.S.-Canada relations have deteriorated so badly that President Bush on his last trip to Canada quipped he was surprised Canadians were waving in a civilized way when his motorcade passed.
GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I want to thank the Canadian people who came out to wave, with all five fingers, for their hospitality.(LAUGHTER)
PILGRIM: Lumber is only four percent of trade. But meanwhile, the United States supports Canada's industries: 85 percent of Canadian exports are bought by U.S. customers; some $250 billion worth from machinery, furniture, building materials and farm products. The United States is also Canada's biggest customer for oil, but Canadian officials recently
gloated about the possibility of selling oil to China, clearly to aggravate the United States. [Grrrr!] Prime Minister Martin in a New York speech earlier this month said the United States has to pay back the $4 billion in duties it collected on Canadian lumber.
PAUL MARTIN, CANADIAN PRIME MINISTER: This is nonsense. More than that, it is a breach of faith. Countries must live up to their agreements. The duties must be refunded. Free trade must be fair trade.
PILGRIM:
It is fair -- the World Trade Organization ruled in favor of the United States. [Grrrr!!! no mention of NAFTA rulings!] (END VIDEOTAPE)
PILGRIM: Now, the Canadian prime minister is grandstanding for the public. He has said the U.S. is out to humiliate Canada, while Canadian elections are expected early next year, and with the Canadian voters it serves political purpose to push back on the United States about trade, so the climate will likely stay tense for a little while longer -- Lou? [Grrrrr!!!]
DOBBS: I am shocked and dismayed to learn that our neighbors to the north have government officials who play politics just like ours do down here in the barbarian south.
PILGRIM: And the thing they don't point out is that the lumber trade is subsidized, but they don't mention that. (LAUGHTER) [Kiss my ass, "Kitty"!!!]
DOBBS: It is -- I think that was pointed out pretty well at the WTO. But I think it's humorous that Paul Martin and company would get so excited over what is three percent of a trade deal and one in which the Canadians are doing very well, thank you. [What?! Lou, you hate the WTO. I guess it only deserves your wrath when China's involved, eh?]
We're good pals, good neighbors. We'll have politics in both countries, see how it all works out. I'm sure it will work out well for all.
Paging Frank McKenna: Yeearrrrrggghh!
Plan B: comedian Greg Behrendt's book, "He's just not that into you." Particularly Ch. 11: "He's just not that into you if he's a selfish jerk, a bully, or a really big freak."

1 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

For a piece of classic American redneck vitriol on US-Canada relations at its worst, check out blog: http://eitherorr.blogspot.com/2005/12/paul-martin-jr-bad-for-us-canada.html

The blog author (“bob” of honey brook : Pennsylvania/email: boborr4@earthlink.net) has a right to express his warped views of course. But under the guise of an open and free public discussion forum, this obnoxious blogger constantly spews out blatantly false, misleading, and scurrilous information, definitely crossing the line of decency befitting the appropriate use of the internet. Further, the author deliberately and arbitrarily filters out, removes and blocks commentary that challenges the validity of his vicious prejudicial rantings. “bob” is particularly onerous in his own commentary when taking pot-shots at noted Canadian personages such as Paul Martin and Maurice Strong, which plainly constitute defamation of character and border on personal libel. (note: commentary incidently that I notice he has just removed).

If you find the blog nauseatingly objectionable as I have, I encourage you (as I have done) to register a complaint with the internet service organizations being used by this blogger to broadcast his ugly contagion:

> Haloscan: http://www.haloscan.com/contact/
> Blogger: http://help.blogger.com/?page=wishlist&skiplogin=yes

More importantly, alerting the PM office in Ottawa may hopefully precipitate some action to deal with this vicious and indictable propaganda:

website: http://pm.gc.ca/eng/default.asp
email: pm@pm.gc.ca

Also alerting the Canadian media wouldn’t hurt:

> lettertoed@thestar.ca
> Letters@GlobeAndMail.ca

12/18/2005 7:10 PM  

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