Saturday, February 21, 2009

Armed deteriorating old salesman with dementia

I think I am getting too old to get excited about Obama. Watching our political leaders cooing over the new president, even though it was for their own political purposes, seems utterly shallow and somewhat degrading. Obama is an amazing orator, one hell of a politician and probably the best salesperson I have ever seen, hawking a new version of America for the 21st century.

Somehow, though, I miss the old Canadian arrogance of a Trudeau grabbing the mike on parliament hill to ask the booing crowds to calm down and show some respect for the visiting President Reagan. Of course delivered with a grin. Maybe it is that their guy, is now better than our guy, but it was somewhat sickening to see both Harper and Ignatieff acting like infatuated school girls. It was almost worse than Mulroney singing Irish tunes.

Suddenly I have new found respect for Layton, about not making a bigger deal over the Obama visit (or possibly he did and it just was not widely reported, as most things NDP tend to be). Then again he could have been out in the parking lot, shooting hoops for all I know.

With the mess that Obama has inherited and the all over the map solutions that are being presented, complete with the right wing backlash to every proposal, the best he can do is be a cheer leader for the next four months, while trying to put the wheels back on. He is like a show bunny that you used to hire for your trade show booth. The cute, young girl placed out front to draw the unsuspecting and now enamored buyers inside so that you could work them over, on a deal.

Now that NAFTA is being placed back on the table and Harper is running around, trying to pass himself off as a born again, green, progressive, Canada as a country can end up loosing more of its independence and some of the stuff that make us Canadian, even though they cost us a lot. The last time the Americans wanted Education, Health and Media put on the table and opened up to alternative cross border offerings. I have no doubt that Harper would give away anything that he could politically package and get away with (and he has proven his success at that), if the Americans will continue to buy our black tar from Alberta.

During my increasing recessive workload this week (you know that inner panic, that you better work harder and not necessarily smarter), I ended talking to some of our American clients about the excitement their guys visit was causing up here. What struck me was that even though there was the expected, conflicting, opinions about Obama based on party affiliation and geographical colour scheme (Dallas versus Boston), there were similar doubts and apprehension about whether Obama could pull it off.

Their bottom-line regarding their businesses, their employees and their families, (and not surprisingly in that order) was hey, we’re on own here, its up to us, the big money is going to the big guys and rest us have to do the best we can. However it would be a good thing, if we were not as hated everywhere else in the world, just in case I can afford a vacation again. What is the weather like in Canada?

It is the same up here. Even though I want our government to wisely spend money with major industries if there is a job tag applied to the investment and I would like to see an increase and extension of unemployment benefits that reflects the gravity and expected duration of this recession, it doesn’t really help me sell more stuff next week.

Maybe if the Business Development Bank could provide money to small businesses at less than a 13% interest rate or if the banks were forced to lower the interest charges on credit cards, especially at time when we are all being asked to spend more money, more of us might get some benefit from the much heralded stimulus. However like the majority of Americans we are pretty much, on our own, up here too.

If all fails, I am heading to the woods with my unregistered, pump action, twelve gauge, and wait for my grandkids to visit every now and then. That was the armed part of the post.

As for the dementia I forgot to mark the 500th post, this is post 512. Well, maybe 593 if you include the videos posted here.

Thanks for dropping by every now and then.


JAWL

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