Sunday, August 6, 2006

Emerson : NAFTA is crap

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.

Thursday, August 3, 2006

Tread water and carry a big stick

Shorter David Emerson : If the lumber companies don't voluntarily sign off on giving $1 billion in illegal softwood bribe money to the US in order to keep the Cons in power here, then, as the government of Canada, we will let the US keep the whole damn $5 billion.

Emerson states that negotiations have ended and the White House has no more appetite left for further negotiations.

Hah! By "negotiations" he is presumably referring to the unamended version of the deal which Canadian lumber companies received only days before he signed off on it.
CathiefromCanada was right on the money when she pointed out that an agreement requires, you know, agreement.

He also has the unmitigated gall to slag the previous liberal government's strategy of winning all softwood disputes in both international and US courts - at a "cost of millions". Which last time I looked was still less than "billions".

Hey, asshole, weren't you a big part of that strategy when you were with the Libs? I mean, wasn't the big rationale for you defecting to the Cons that it would enable you to continue your valuable work despite a change in government? So who exactly is it you are actually working for again?