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Invisiblecarbonhoots
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Registered: 09/11/01
Posts: 1,351
Loc: BC Canada
Canada's flip-flopping Prime Minister
    #3894044 - 03/09/05 08:01 PM (11 years, 10 months ago)

I respect a man who admits he was wrong.

George W Bush is frequently praised for being a man of resolve.

Martin's flip-flop

Despite errors PM is in step with Canadians.

Dateline: Sunday, March 06, 2005

by Linda McQuaig

George W Bush is frequently praised for being a man of resolve. Even though his plan for Iraq proved a disaster, based on a lie, at least he stuck to it.

I see little merit in this school of thought. Surely it's better to flip-flop than to doggedly keep on being wrong. Which is why I have no trouble with Paul Martin changing his mind about missile defence.

Nor do I see any evidence that his rejection will compromise our relations with the United States. Washington may be signaling irritation, but we have too much that it wants starting with our ample energy for it to let a serious rift develop.

Despite errors PM is in step with Canadians. So Washington was demanding more from Canada than it could expect from its own Republican Congress.



Meanwhile, US officials can sit back and relax, as Canada's own media commentators take up the American cause, berating Ottawa for daring to defy the US colossus.

All in one column, The Globe and Mail's Margaret Wente branded Martin "ridiculous," "incompetent," "self-righteous," and "a spineless wimp" with the "backbone of a jellyfish." What did Martin do to deserve this tirade? According to Wente, he "read the opinion polls and caved in."

In other words, he listened to the Canadian people, who strongly oppose the reckless missile defence scheme, rather than taking his orders from the US ambassador.

Such pandering to the masses clearly annoys our elite commentators, who seem surprisingly willing to trust George W Bush even more willing, it appears, than the US Congress.

Congress has provided only limited support for missile defence, compared to the blanket endorsement the Bush administration sought from Canada, according to Michael O'Hanlon, senior fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington.

"(T)he president asked Canada for something he probably could not get from the Republican-controlled legislature in his own country," O'Hanlon wrote in the Christian Science Monitor last week.

So Washington was demanding more from Canada than it could expect from its own Republican Congress.

By saying no, Ottawa showed some backbone. It showed that we won't automatically acquiesce to Washington's demands, that we have our own priorities.

That's a healthy signal to send, if we want to be treated as an equal.

None of this is meant to cast Martin as a hero. His first impulse was to support missile defence, for opportunistic reasons. His corporate backers wanted chummier ties with Washington and a shot at Pentagon contracts. It seemed like a cheap, painless way to suck up to the Bush administration.

But a strange thing happened. It turned out Canadians strongly opposed Bush's aggressive stance in the world and didn't want to endorse a scheme that seems sure to revive the arms race, and even put weapons in space.

Sensing the extent of the popular resistance just as he'd sensed the popular resistance to the bank mergers back in 1998 Martin realized this would likely be a deal-breaker for the Canadian people. So he decided not to deliver what his corporate friends and the Bush administration demanded.

Spineless wimp? Or a man caught in the crosshairs of democracy?

Score this one to a victory for democracy with a message sent to Washington that popular resistance is still alive up here


--------------------
  -I'd rather have a frontal lobotomy than a bottle in front of me

CANADIAN CENTER FOR POLICY ALTERNATIVES


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OfflineCatalysis
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Re: Canada's flip-flopping Prime Minister [Re: carbonhoots]
    #3894095 - 03/09/05 08:07 PM (11 years, 10 months ago)

I grow tired of editorials with all of this juvenile name-calling. You would think we are all still in 3rd grade. It only shows lack of class, intelligence, and ability to successfully convey a point or idea. There is less name calling and immaturity in the debates on these forums than in the professional publications where you find this stuff.


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OfflinePhluck
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Re: Canada's flip-flopping Prime Minister [Re: Catalysis]
    #3894102 - 03/09/05 08:09 PM (11 years, 10 months ago)

Yeah, if you read the Globe and Mail, you'd know that Margaret Wente is an annoying weasel.

I'm with the PM on this one.


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
http://phluck.is-after.us


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OfflineCatalysis
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Re: Canada's flip-flopping Prime Minister [Re: carbonhoots]
    #3894180 - 03/09/05 08:24 PM (11 years, 10 months ago)

I agree with most of the article and the PM's choice to do what the people want.

I found this line very funny though..

Quote:

Score this one to a victory for democracy with a message sent to Washington that popular resistance is still alive up here




Why do canadians make a huge drama whenever they do something not in favor of the US? This may come as a surprise but no one in the US really cares that much. This missle thing was water-cooler talk for like 1 day in the US...not even a day, more like half a day lol.

Its really funny to see this "oh my god, we can't do that" or "yeah, lets stand up to em and show them that we aren't their bitch" mentality when people here are pretty much ok with whatever canada does.


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Invisiblecarbonhoots
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Re: Canada's flip-flopping Prime Minister [Re: Catalysis]
    #3894270 - 03/09/05 08:36 PM (11 years, 10 months ago)

I wish.

Back in the early eighties, whem PM Trudeau attempted to bring Canada's oil reserves back to majority Canadian ownership, there was plenty of not-coolness in Washington.

His attempt ultimately failed, BTW.

America has a HUGE influence on Canada. And what might seem minor around the water cooler in the hallways of America is big news to us Canucks.

Strange but true.


--------------------
  -I'd rather have a frontal lobotomy than a bottle in front of me

CANADIAN CENTER FOR POLICY ALTERNATIVES


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OfflinePhluck
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Re: Canada's flip-flopping Prime Minister [Re: Catalysis]
    #3894331 - 03/09/05 08:42 PM (11 years, 10 months ago)

Considering the fact that american pressure is probably the biggest factor that's holding back Canadian marijuana reform, it's pretty foolish to say that our asserting our political independance doesn't matter.

Also, the people with whom you had your watercooler discussion about missile defence aren't the people who matter at all in this issue. Considering that Canadian cooperation in NORAD is strategically important, I'd say that this DOES matter to those in the US who are pushing for the missile defense system.


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
http://phluck.is-after.us


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OfflineCatalysis
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Re: Canada's flip-flopping Prime Minister [Re: Phluck]
    #3894577 - 03/09/05 09:29 PM (11 years, 10 months ago)

Quote:

Considering the fact that american pressure is probably the biggest factor that's holding back Canadian marijuana reform, it's pretty foolish to say that our asserting our political independance doesn't matter.




I'm not saying it doesn't matter, im saying do it and stop being afraid of the US. Canada has plenty of leverage and they are perfectly capable of running the country how they want.

Quote:

Also, the people with whom you had your watercooler discussion about missile defence aren't the people who matter at all in this issue. Considering that Canadian cooperation in NORAD is strategically important, I'd say that this DOES matter to those in the US who are pushing for the missile defense system.




If you want to participate, then participate. If you don't, then don't. Look, you chose not to participate and no one forced you. The US didn't kick Canada out of NORAD, they basically said "ok". This is exactly my point. You think all of these dire consequences will be imposed on your country if you legalize pot but you have never done it so how do you know? I bet, just like the missle system proposal, the US just really won't care. Time to stop blaming everyone else and take some initiative.


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Invisiblecarbonhoots
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Re: Canada's flip-flopping Prime Minister [Re: Catalysis]
    #3894611 - 03/09/05 09:34 PM (11 years, 10 months ago)

Just don't mess with the oil.


--------------------
  -I'd rather have a frontal lobotomy than a bottle in front of me

CANADIAN CENTER FOR POLICY ALTERNATIVES


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OfflinePhluck
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Re: Canada's flip-flopping Prime Minister [Re: Catalysis]
    #3894644 - 03/09/05 09:39 PM (11 years, 10 months ago)

I'm not saying it doesn't matter, im saying do it and stop being afraid of the US. Canada has plenty of leverage and they are perfectly capable of running the country how they want.

I'm sorry, but it's just not that simple.
http://www.medicalmarihuana.ca/meddling.html
http://www.cannabisnews.com/news/thread16313.shtml

Quote:


"A dramatic increase in the gross quantity of marijuana of high potency coming across the border," says Colonel Robert Maginnis, a U.S. government adviser on drug policy. He says the Bush administration is alarmed by a recent Senate study that says Canada's marijuana laws are ineffective.

The U.S. fears the next step could be looser regulations leading to more drugs crossing the border and its ready to play hardball with trade to make sure that doesn't happen.

"To antagonize government leaders and grass roots leader because you insist on having a radical drug policy that we will not ignore in the long term, then its going to have adverse consequences and I hope we would be able to rectify it before it comes to blows," explains Maginnis.

The U.S. is closely watching the Canadian marijuana debate and is working behind the scenes to influence the outcome. Next month the president's chief of drug policy attend a drug conference in Quebec and he'll make sure his counterparts understand the U.S. opposes liberalization.




Quote:

The war on drugs, nonetheless, is a U.S. fight, and government officials have not been shy about applying pressure to keep Canada and other nations on track, says Ottawa lawyer Eugene Oscapella, one of the founders of the Canadian Foundation for Drug Policy. In 1999, the United States considered (and then retreated from) the idea of adding Canada to its illicit-drug blacklist for being too soft. In its drug literature, the U.S. State Department has criticized the Supreme Court of Canada for restricting undercover operations.

Australian officials reported that in l996 the United States had suggested to Australia that if the country went ahead with plans to provide heroin as a last resort to addicts, it might put at risk UN permission for its opium poppy industry in Tasmania, where a healthy business is carried on supplying pharmaceutical companies. Australia eventually abandoned its heroin plans.





You think all of these dire consequences will be imposed on your country if you legalize pot but you have never done it so how do you know? I bet, just like the missle system proposal, the US just really won't care. Time to stop blaming everyone else and take some initiative.

People in Canada aren't just assuming that the US wouldn't like it if we legalized pot. This may suprise you, but our governments actually talk to one another, and these things are discussed. It's not all a bunch of guesswork.


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
http://phluck.is-after.us


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OfflineCatalysis
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Re: Canada's flip-flopping Prime Minister [Re: Phluck]
    #3894768 - 03/09/05 09:59 PM (11 years, 10 months ago)

Yeah, the US opposes legalization in Canada. That doesn't mean they are going to impose trade sanctions or whatever else is being suggested by Canadians in your articles. Obviously America would step up drug patrol on the border because weed is illegal here. Actually, last month my brother was not allowed into Canada by authorities there because he has long hair and "looks like a trouble maker" so this is hardly a new thing for either side of the border

I can tell you for a fact that Americans do not see Canada as being the pot haven of North America, most americans wouldn't even know what the hell you are talking about if you brought it up. You think America's business sectors would accept sanctions or whatever else for something so trivial? I think these articles just show an irrational state of fear in Canada instigated mostly by Canadians themselves. Im not trying to bash Canada, im just saying the US citizens and government will respect Canada's decisions for the most part despite what 1 or 2 US senators might say.


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OfflinePhluck
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Re: Canada's flip-flopping Prime Minister [Re: Catalysis]
    #3894789 - 03/09/05 10:04 PM (11 years, 10 months ago)

I can tell you for a fact that Americans do not see Canada as being the pot haven of North America, most americans wouldn't even know what the hell you are talking about if you brought it up.

But 'most americans' aren't what matters. What matters is DEA officials and the government.

I think these articles just show an irrational state of fear in Canada instigated mostly by Canadians themselves.

Well, the average Canadian citizen isn't that worried about the US government, and many would be in favor of legalization regardless of what the US thinks. It's the people in the government who raised the issue about US pressure, and they're the ones who continue to point out that this is a barrier.

Personally, I think Canada should go ahead and legalize, and I've never met a single Canadian who is in favor of legalization that thinks we should bow to US pressure.


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
http://phluck.is-after.us


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InvisibleCalifornia
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Re: Canada's flip-flopping Prime Minister [Re: Phluck]
    #3898135 - 03/10/05 04:33 PM (11 years, 10 months ago)

If Canada legalizes herb, there will be a large number of Americans immigrating to Canada.
What's Canadas' flip-flopping PM opinion on legalization?


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OfflinePhluck
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Re: Canada's flip-flopping Prime Minister [Re: California]
    #3898301 - 03/10/05 05:12 PM (11 years, 10 months ago)

They're pushing the new decrim bill, which is bullshit.

Basically, it will reduce penalties for users, but drastically increase penalties for growers and dealers. So it's not so bad to smoke marijuana, but making it available is evil.

Wow, that sure is progress.  :rolleyes:

I should note, I don't think there will be THAT many americans immigrating to Canada. You can't just move up here on a whim, there ARE immigration laws.


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
http://phluck.is-after.us


Edited by Phluck (03/10/05 05:14 PM)


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