Friday, March 04, 2005

The Latest Shot in the War of the 49th Parallel

One of the lead stories we've been following this week is Dominatrix-of-State Condi Rice's snubbing of our hoser friends in the Great White North. Our prior reportage can be found here and here.

And now, in the spirit of "one-upsmanship", a former Canadian Foreign Minister lobs a verbal missile back south of the 49th (this one's been kicking around the web in the past 24 hours - it was first raised on Kos, but the article wasn't online). Looks like Winnipeg Free Press opened up their normally closed subscription area for this one:

Axworthy fires back at U.S.; Open Letter to U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. I particularly enjoyed this passage of Axworthy's letter:

...Coming to Ottawa might also expose you to a parliamentary system that has a thing called question period every day, where those in the executive are held accountable by an opposition for their actions, and where demands for public debate on important topics such a missile defence can be made openly.

You might also notice that it's a system in which the governing party's caucus members are not afraid to tell their leader that their constituents don't want to follow the ideological, perhaps teleological, fantasies of Canada's continental co-inhabitant. And that this leader actually listens to such representations.

Your boss did not avail himself of a similar opportunity to visit our House of Commons during his visit, fearing, it seems, that there might be some signs of dissent. He preferred to issue his diktat on missile defence in front of a highly controlled, pre-selected audience.

Such control-freak antics may work in the virtual one-party state that now prevails in Washington. But in Canada we have a residual belief that politicians should be subject to a few checks and balances, an idea that your country once espoused before the days of empire.

If you want to have us consider your proposals and positions, present them in a proper way, through serious discussion across the table in our cabinet room, as your previous president did when he visited Ottawa. And don't embarrass our prime minister by lobbing a verbal missile at him while he sits on a public stage, with no chance to respond...

Ooh, I get all warm and fuzzy just reading that passage again and again.

And, our Canuckistan bureau chief RossK of Gazetteer points to some audio from Axworthy that should be online shortly...