2 min

Leadership in the face of protectionism

The issue of “Buy American” was raised today by Scott Brison in one of the Liberals’ many daily press releases. (Their press people certainly haven’t taken the summer off, even if people say they never see Ignatieff out and about). In the release, Brison talks about meeting with the management and workers of a company being forced to move operations to the States because of the growing mood of protectionism in the States. Brison says what is needed is a federal government who can work with the provinces on trade agreements – something which could go a long way to blunting these protectionist measures, as free trade doesn’t extent to the sub-national level.

The premiers are meeting this week – and yet Brison has a point. Where is the federal government in all of this? I don’t see Harper meeting with them, nor the minister of Intergovernmental Affairs. For those of you keeping score, that’s Josée Verner – she of the bad fake tans. (Seriously – half the time she looks positively orange). Nice to see that the federal government is trying to actually work with the provinces to overcome these economic challenges, rather than simply telling them to cough up their share of funds for infrastructure projects.

On a slightly related note, it looks like we might finally be getting a new American ambassador after what? Eight months? Isn’t it usually the practice of countries to pull their ambassadors as an act or protest? And yet, the two countries with the “largest trading relationship of any two countries in the history of the world” during a period where there are many challenges, from the aforementioned protectionist measures, to passport requirements at border crossings, to thickening borders – has been allowed to be without an American ambassador in Canada for over eight months? Really? Anyway, he had his brief Senate hearing, and it might hopefully get confirmed later today – before the Senate goes on a month-long break. About freaking time, I would say.

Harper’s “intensely loyal” gatekeeper is leaving her job. Rumour has it she may be considered for a Senate appointment, as there are currently eight vacancies, and will be one more before Parliament returns. But I’m sure that if that’s the case, she’d be totally willing to run for election when it becomes available (likely never), and she’d for sure limit her term to eight years. Totally.

Honorary drag queen Hedy Fry posted pictures of her appearance in the Vancouver Pride Parade, and I have to say, I love it!

Apparently the parade theme was “Educate, Liberate, Celebrate,” and the Hedy’s entry was “Spreading the Message Across the Galaxy.” And they did it totally in 1980s Buck Rogers style. Fantastic!

Up today: Jack Layton will board the HMCS Halifax to meet the ship’s crew and observe a demonstration of naval operations.