Guess who may be going to Canada? No, it isn’t me … and I’m not going to tell you who just yet … I will get to that in a moment …
Of all the world leaders today, I think I most respect Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada. He is wise, gracious, and most of all, he is a humanitarian. PM Trudeau and Donald Trump are as different as night and day:
- Trudeau is a self-described feminist who appointed his country’s first gender-balanced cabinet. Trump, currently married to his third wife, has cheated on the first two, and has been accused multiple times of sexual misconduct. There are very few women among Trump’s cabinet picks.
- Trudeau has sought to champion trade deals such as Ceta (Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement, with the EU). Trump withdrew from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal last month and has threatened to rip up the NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement) trade deal.
- Trudeau said, “To those fleeing persecution, terror & war, Canadians will welcome you, regardless of your faith. Diversity is our strength”. Trump signed an executive order to ban all immigrants from seven Middle Eastern nations that are primarily Muslim nations, for no apparent reason.
- Trudeau is well-educated and speaks intelligently. Trump can barely string a sentence together on his best days.
So it is understandable that as Justin Trudeau plans for a visit to the U.S. to meet with Trump next Monday, he is consulting with other world leaders for advice on how to proceed. In preparation for the upcoming meeting, PM Trudeau has contacted both British Prime Minister Theresa May and French President François Hollande to discuss how best to engage with Trump. Two of the key points that will likely be discussed are trade and the Keystone pipeline.
While other leaders have, understandably and justifiably, criticized Trump, Trudeau has notably refrained from doing so. In part this is because of his nature, but more importantly, the economies of Canada and the U.S. are closely tied, with some 73% of Canada’s exports going to the U.S. Trump has threatened to ‘rip up’ NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement) and re-negotiate to be in the best interest of the U.S., as well as impose border tariffs on imports from both Canada and Mexico. Trudeau, familiar by now with Trump’s inconsistent and irrational rhetoric, must be concerned for the future of Canadian-U.S. relations.
Earlier today, asked how he viewed his relationship with the United States, Trudeau said, “Canadians expect their government to have a constructive working relationship with the incoming American administration, and that’s exactly what we’re going to do. But there are things that we hold dear that the Americans haven’t prioritized. I’m never going to shy away from standing up for what I believe in — whether it’s proclaiming loudly to the world that I am a feminist, whether it’s understanding that immigration is a source of strength for us and Muslim Canadians are an essential part of the success of our country today and into the future.” I wonder if Canadians would be willing to trade leaders?
Now, as if that weren’t enough for PM Trudeau to have to worry about … word has it that Trump is seriously considering none other than America’s #1 Bimbo, Sarah Palin, as the U.S. Ambassador to Canada!!! Take a minute to savor that one!
Canadians are not exactly jumping for joy at this news. Democrat MP Charlie Angus tweeted, “Sarah Palin as ambassador? Well that would show how little Steve Bannon and his pal @realDonaldTrump think of Canada.” Some thought it was an early April Fool’s joke from the White House, while still others thought it must surely be fake news. But no, a White House spokesperson confirmed that she was being considered. Some reactions from Canadians:
- “Appointing Sarah Palin as the US ambassador to Canada is, like, ultimate trolling.”
- “If he makes Sarah Palin the US Ambassador to Canada. I say we keep our oil and hockey players. BTW … does she speak Canadian?”
- “This is entirely because Sarah Palin can see Canada from Alaska, isn’t it?”
- “Just cus @SarahPalinUSA ‘probably’ knows the difference between a moose & a beaver shouldn’t make her a Canadian ambassador option.”
- “Palin as ambassador is an insult. To any country.”
- “Dear Mr. Trump: Rather than appoint Sarah Palin as ambassador to Canada, please bomb us. Signed, all intelligent life in Canada.” (This was my personal favourite!)
- “Stop laughing, little known fact – she speaks almost fluent Canadian.”
- “I know #Trump is cruel and heartless but making #SarahPalin #US #Ambassador to #Canada would be going too far.”
Last week I wrote about Trump’s choice of Ted Malloch as ambassador to the EU, a poor choice, as Malloch has expressed disdain for the European Union. The appointment of Sarah Palin as ambassador to Canada would be an equally poor selection, not only because she is a brainless twit, but because her ideology, to the extent she can be said to have one, is quite the opposite of that of PM Trudeau. Andrew Cohen, a columnist for the Ottawa Citizen, summed it up best: “In Canada, Palin would have to learn to speak one of our official languages. She would have to live in a land of naïfs who favour immigrants, gay marriage, the United Nations and NATO.”
Ambassadors serve as a liaison in communications between the two countries, and Palin sorely lacks the intellect or the filter to be an ambassador to any country, let alone our nearest ally, an ally with whom we have historically had cordial relations and with whom we share a border. It seems to me rather a slap in the face to even consider her for the appointment. But then, it shouldn’t come as a surprise, given that Trump seems intent on destroying relationships with allies while cultivating relationships with contentious dictators such as Putin and Erdoğan.
Welcome to the new United States, Mr. Trudeau … enjoy your visit!