Skip to comments.Europe No Longer a Model for Us (A Canadian's plaintive cri de coeur)
Posted on 06/04/2005 8:12:55 PM PDT by quidnunc
During the past week The New York Times, which is far and away the most international-minded of American newspapers, has run not a single editorial on the rejection of the European Union constitution by voters in France and the Netherlands.
And, up to yesterday, only one among its large stable of columnists has bothered to offer comment on the topic. By contrast, all the major Canadian newspapers have run either editorials or commentaries on this topic, or both.
The explanation for this that comes most easily to mind is that while we, as medium-sized guys, pay assiduous attention to what others are doing, Americans pass their time admiring themselves in a mirror.
Except we, too, are looking at ourselves in a mirror. In practical matters, like trade, investment, immigration, military security, Europe has been of marginal importance to us for a long time.
Psychologically, though, and entirely aside from its beauty and command of the art of living, which make it a great place to visit, Europe still matters a lot to us.
We are bred in the bone multilateralists. Maybe because we're nice guys eager to make the world a better place; far more because unilateralism leaves us alone with the Americans.
Europe, in the form of the European Union, has long been the role model of multilateralism. A crowd of, now, 25 nation-states have figured out how to make their whole larger than the sum of their individual parts while yet each remaining distinctive and autonomous.
Had figured out, that's to say. The EU is in fundamental crisis these days. It's lost momentum, and self-confidence and a sense of direction. Its own people regard it increasingly as a threat to their way of life, to their distinctiveness, to their autonomy.
If Europeans can't make multilateralism work, how likely is it to work around the world where the cultural and economic and political differences are so much wider?
And if multilateralism, at the United Nations and elsewhere, loses its credibility and effectiveness, where do we Canadians go to find psychic, and real-life space in the American empire?
(Denny Crane: "Sometimes you can only look for answers from God and failing that... and Fox News".)
What a boob! The Conservatives are paying attention you idiot!
Deep. Very deep.
I especially like the turn of phrase: "unilateralism leaves us alone with the Americans."
Even the New York Times is silent on poor Canada's identity crisis. Sniff.
"...where do we Canadians go to find psychic, and real-life space in the American empire?"
Canadians can find "psychic" space by learning to think for themselves rather just repeating the currently fashionable liberal line.
They can find "real-life" space in any direction (though they might particularly enjoy a weekend at Peggy's Cove in Nova Scotia).
I know the "American empire" must be a bummer. Just last weekend, me and my imperial buddies drove north across the border to rape and pillage. Tough bounce.
Jeez, Canadians are getting as tiresome and gross as a Woody Allen movie. Get over your inferiority complex. You have a great country. I've always loved Canada and hope to again.
Tahnk you for saying that. I'm a canadian FReeper and was born in Vietnam and I love Canada. Can you guess? Native canadians, especially conservatives, make my blood boil sometime if you know what i mean.
Just because the NYT is ignoring something doesn't mean everyone else in the country is "looking in the mirror". Maybe if this guy got out of his little cocoon and read something other than the tripe from the Times he would know that.
Another temper tantrum from the north.
We are in fact Americans and what happens in America has much more impact on us than some Canucks care to admit. It is scarey for some up here to face the reality that 9/11 changed the world and thier little isolationist existence will come to an end very soon no matter how hard they try to resist it. Thus a revolution is underway in the "great conflicted North". Thank you GWB.
Sorry Richard, it's not because we're preening, it's because we don't much care.
If Europe decides on anti-Americanism, fine, we'll reply in kind. If France and Germany drag each other down, that's OK with us.
We are a bit concerned that the EU may pull down our true friends and allies in Europe.
Could it be that the NY Times is downplaying the EU's crushing defeat because it couldn't think of a way of blaming George Bush? Because it was a defeat for statism, bureaucracy, and rule by the elites? Those are the explanations that come to my mind tht evidently didn't occur to this Canadian.
The explanation for this [is] that...Americans pass their time admiring themselves in a mirror.
This writer chides America for its insularity, but doesn't have a clue about America. Obviously, The New York Times ignores the EU Constitution collapse because it is a democratic rejection of Socialism, and the NYT can't spin it against the Bush Administration. Freepers have been keenly interested in the EU debacle.
To determine what is going on in America by analyzing the NYT Op-Ed page is Canadian parochial stupidity of the first order.
"The explanation for this..is that while we, as medium-sized guys, pay assiduous attention to what others are doing, Americans pass their time admiring themselves in a mirror."
No, I think the explanation for this is the the NY Times has egg on its face and can't deal with the fact that the Euro-dream is disintegrating.
I would advise this author not to judge Americans based on the editorial staff of the NY Times. sheesh!
Tomorrow, the anniversary of D-Day, Canadians would do well to remember the brave boys of the Winipeg Rifles, Regina Rifles, the Canadian Scottish, the 1st Hussars, the Queen's Own Rifles, and the Régiment de la Chaudière who planted the Red Ensign on Juno Beach.
Canadians are second to none.
It's drivel like this that makes me shake my head. At least I have some comfort in that it comes from the Toronto Red Star.
I got quite a chuckle out of the self-flattery that permeates that
op-ed. Rather than "Whoa, our Continental model is proving to be a house of
cards, we better take this seriously," it veers into asides about how
superior Canada is, especially versus the U.S. "We aren't as
individualistic, as competitive, as ruthless as the U.S., but we've absorbed
with our mothers' milk all the unique qualities of this continent, from
confidence, to looking to the future rather than the past, to ease with
change, to acceptance of space." I mean, please-- they accuse *us* of
vainly admiring ourselves in the mirror...
This is a quirk I've noticed about Canada (especially Toronto) before. It's
a lovely place with great people and some remarkable industry, but Toronto
in particular is a town that somehow feels it necessary to constantly point
out how it's got the World's Tallest Restaurant Tower and the World's
Biggest Enclosed Stadium and the World's Longest Street and just this
unending list of superlatives. The pop-psychologist in me wryly regards
this as "compensation" for something, and this op-ed is festooned with it.
Being 'the newspaper of record' and all,
being as how news becomes history with the next day's headlines,
being as how it's an embarrassment to their friends and their ideology;
by ignoring it they think it will go away.
This is the monster under their collective (pun intended) bed.
if a tree falls in the Forest and the Times doesn't report it, did the tree really fall?
I didn't realize that Canuckistan is part of the American Empire. Isn't Canuckistan more like sunless and beachless form of Cuba?
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