Sunday, 3 June 2018

Are we the victims of extortion?


Are we the victims of extortion?

I can’t remember a time in which Canadians felt separate from our neighbors in the US. Canada and the US typically trade 63 Billion dollars worth of goods and services a year. We are different from our American kin next door, but we act like one family. You can’t tell the difference between a Canadian and an American unless they tell you. I had neighbors who were American and didn’t even know it for a long time. Now (sadly) I do. I feel like I been kicked by someone I trusted.

One does not expect family or neighbors to point a gun to their head and say, give me your money, but yet this is exactly what is happening now, and the gun is pointed at us. We remember all the times when we fought, and some of us died, to help the US, but they forgot. At least their self-proclaimed great businessman President did. Canada declared war on the US enemies after Pearl Harbor before the US did.

The ruling US elite just wants the money and don’t care where we get it from. If we must put thousands of Canadians out of work in order for Trump to create jobs, and win the next elections, he doesn’t care. It's our problem.  Our little Pass community here that mines metallurgical coal may be affected.

Last week our Prime Minister was scheduled to visit the White House to sign a newly negotiated trade deal (NAFTA) and found out that the good neighbors will only agree if we capitulate on one of the main points that we negotiated, the sunset close. We can play negotiating games with them all we want, but at the end, we either give them the money, or they will hurt us as much as they can. If we don’t give them the money, they will not let their “free” businesses buy from us, and we will have to look for other customers. They do the same to all their allies, the G7 countries and to their less friendly competitors, like China. Family, friends or neighbors doesn't count for much in the new game; it is only about money.

Deals signed and believed to be binding are only binding on one side, when the once again great America, become richer and the others, like us, become poorer. Other deals faired the same. The Paris accord, the sad co-existence in Korea, the deal with Iran, the unspoken agreement about Jerusalem, the status of transgender people in the army, the regulations on banks, consumer protection laws, safety of drinking water, wildlife sanctuaries, public lands, and parks, freedom of the press, rules about nepotism, all been assailed in short order.  I can go on just out of memory and it’s shocking.

The US is a very powerful country and everyone at one time wanted to be their friends. The only country that didn’t have to ask to be their friend was Canada. Both Canadians and Americans understood that Canada is the US friend. What we Canadians didn’t understand is that we are the house slaves. The Americans want us to supply all they need or want, for the price they wish to pay and not expect anything back. It's not all Americans; it's actually the few who make big money. They are used to taking whatever they want from their own population and they view us as a threat. Some kind of big labor union named Canada. Trump truly feels that we should be taught who is the boss.

I stayed in the US for a while and always have been around Americans. Calgary is home to many Americans and even a presidential candidate in the last elections was born in Calgary. Aside from him I never yet met an American I didn’t like and “lying Ted” I never really met. They are nice people if you keep in mind that they come from a different culture. Many of them are here because they can’t stand the constant stress of their culture. Some are here to make money and some moved here to be with Canadians since they have more in common with us.

I love and respect Americans that I know since all of them happen to be nice. I used to admire how they used competitive human nature to build and invent things, but I always had reservations about how they treated others like the African Americans, the native population and many of those who immigrated like the Chinese and Japanese. I can’t blame them since we as a nation are guilty of the same. However we Canadians are now living up to it and making attempts to make at least symbolic amends. In their case, they as a nation are going the other way.

The US today is crossing the line from being good business people to becoming plain pirates. They are at war against terrorists but do not even try to hide that terrorism is legitimate in their eyes if used to make gains. The America of this generation is keeping half of their own numbers in poverty, lack of medical and educational services or even in jail as well as complete future insecurity and now they turned their gaze on us.

We build up an industry and sale them some products, they develop one of their own and force us to close down. It could be anything, agricultural, technological, whatever one can imagine. I for one am tired of being the hewers of wood and drawers of water. In my humble opinion, we should push for an end to this unfair marriage.

A country like Canada can easily support itself without depending on big brother. There are plenty of nations that we can trade with, and I sooner become used to paying for transporting goods instead of getting used to giving Trump and his panel of robbers unfair tariffs.

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