No, he didn't actually use the word "crap".
He did one better : he explained why it *is* crap for Canada.
"I want people to remember that NAFTA is built on domestic laws," Emerson said. "You can win a legal victory today, and think you have established a legal precedent, only to have Congress change the laws affecting the industry and the way disputes are litigated in the future."
In other words - if no US law is broken, the US wins the dispute.
If a US law is broken causing the US to lose the dispute, Congress simply changes that law and mounts an appeal.
We would like to thank David Emerson for being the first member of Harper's cabinet to publicly admit that NAFTA is a crappy deal for Canada.
Of course, Emerson is only knocking NAFTA to sell his and Steve's 'Firesale! softwood diplomacy' as a better alternative. And we already know that Steve intends to blackmail the opposition into accepting it rather than risk having the government go down in a non-confidence vote this fall.
As Toronto Star's David Crane puts it :
"Because U.S. courts were finding for Canada, the Bush administration wanted an immediate settlement.The Harper government caved. Now we will have to see whether the opposition parties will do the same."
Bonus : Dave's Snarky (Northern) Canadian Blog explains Emerson's affinity for Firesale! diplomacy.