I can only imagine how thrilled were our thick clutch of autophobes to watch Canadian soil puddled by John McCain's spew of platitudinous drivel at the pretentiously named Economic Club of Canada.
Canada-hating quasimodos never feel more alive than when some U.S. celebrity or politician, gliding northwards upon a prestige conferred by the infallible sagacity and impeccable taste of American trailer-parks, bowling-alleys and dumb-blonde soccer moms, is kind enough to provide Canada with a reason to exist, if only for a day, by stopping by to tell us what to think before revelling in the deafening applause of the millions of Canadians who seem convinced that members of the inveterately corrupt leadership class of a nation fully engaged in the process of failing on every significant quality-of-life level and taking a chainsaw to its own economy have anything of even purely rhetorical value to offer anyone.
To be fair, McCain, though speaking (as always) as if he'd just awakened from an eighteen-year coma, did try to break up his deadly dull oration with some quaint comic relief: he opined that "[Canada and the U.S.] are...both Arctic nations" without adding that the Arctic portion of America could fit comfortably into Saskatchewan.
Naturally, he felt compelled to mumble the usual American nonsense about the sanctity of open trade. He is reported to have said that Canada and the United States have a "shared destiny" in expanding free trade. I wonder if that "expansion" would include bringing down the massive walls of protection behind which U.S. agri-business cowers against the devastating competition which developing nations would otherwise deliver. I wonder, moreover, if McCain expects to be a Congressional champion of the kind of expansion that would give our lumber exports unrestricted access to the U.S. market, thus imposing upon American lumber producers the kind of "discipline" of which Americans are so fond when it can be used to justify the U.S.-driven disembowelment of other nations' economies. In short, I wonder if McCain really thinks he can do anything to counter the global perception that America's actual commitment to free trade suffers from perpetually undescended testicles.
McCain continued with the laughable observation that "the best American statesmen have always understood that Canada is not some adjunct to America". God knows which "statesmen" need be included in the category McCain invokes (most historians would include Bill Clinton), but, surely, each of its members most definitely has considered Canada to be "some adjunct to America", as such is the orthodox American view, codified by the mass American espousal of Manifest Destiny and coddled by our own craven indigenous corporate class and the Vichyite yeomen warders of Fortress America who pollute our politics and our media.
McCain's words are the bored, reflexive "Yeah, yeah, I know you people think you're "sovereign" and all" that American oligarchs and plutocrats always deliver with that uniquely American mix of bumptious self-satisfaction and unctuous condescension. It's as if a Canadian were to feel duty-bound to assure an American audience that the U.S. is more than just an amateurish outgrowth of the British imperial enterprise or more than just a dilapidated lazar house avoiding foreclosure only through the largesse of Chinese banks.
McCain can blow our dearly-won and fragile independence a creepy, thin-lipped kiss if he wants, but it reminds me uncomfortably of an abusive husband pathetically trying to woo back his wife as she lunges for the door by whining, "but haven't we had our good days, too?".
In an act that will do nothing to counter allegations of creeping senility, McCain oozed that "we in America have not forgotten your kindness" in the days following 9/11, forgetting that America immediately forgot our kindness (or, more accurately, never noticed it) and traded in slanderous and hysterically improbable accusations of a "Canadian connection" to the 9/11 plot and later greeted our decision to recuse ourselves from the disastrous Iraq invasion with veiled threats to shut down the border (for "security" reasons, of course) and cripple our economy.
Let's be clear: America's model of cross-border friendship is now what it always has been: simply imagine a friend called "Big Tony" who generously gives you ten thousand dollars and comes by your house a week later demanding the principal plus 80% interest, greeting your incredulity with the sweetly delivered observation that you have a nice family and that it would be a shame if anything unpleasant happened to it.
McCain seems to believe that part of our two nations' "shared destiny" is "maintaining security". This makes sense only if one forgets that America is Canada's prime national-security liability, for there is no other way to describe a nation that has provided the inspiration and organisational infrastructure for the most violent sectors of our own organised crime, that sends thousands of illegal firearms across the border, and that harbours millions of entirely undocumented illegal aliens whose movements are impossible to monitor.
Those who need to be reminded of America's menace to Canadian peace and order are directed to this news item announcing that the Toronto chapter of MS-13, a violent South American gang, has recently been smashed. Predictably, its leadership elements are American migrants who've been using the States as a base of operations. Just as predictably, we have yet to see this incident inspire imprecations against America's corrosive influence upon our nation from those who would not have hesitated to hurl invective at "Islamism" if the gang had been a bunch of jihadist second-generation Arabs led by illegally immigrated Saudis.
The Right's silence in this case and so many others reminds us of how eager they are to denounce the allegedly "evil" (and actually marginal) effects of "alien" cultures when it affords them occasions to spit on people with dark skin, strange headresses and funny accents and how delighted they are to watch our society riven by degenerating, corrosive Americanisms. The relish with which they chase phantom dangers and enable (and often celebrate) real ones is merely one of the many symptoms of the intellectual and moral worthlessness of Canada's Right.
Today, Canadian "Conservatism" is masochism delivered by sadists--the political equivalent of being abducted and forcibly confined by watersport enthusiasts. As people who want to see their nation wiped off the map, the Canadian Right could be compared to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, except that they perfect that clown's insanity by desiring the annihilation of not another nation but their own, thus illustrating a crucial axiom: America's friends are rarely morally different from her enemies.