Thursday, 21 September 2006

Harper gives speech to Economic Club

Prime Minister Stephen Harper gave a speech before the Economic Club of New York last night, and it looks like he hit a lot of right notes, both with Canadians and with his audience, who applauded him roundly.

Some highlights:
  • He drew attention to the fact that Canada is the only stable and growing producer of oil, and the importance of this for continental security has been under-appreciated.
  • He reminded his audience of the great efforts Canada has made in fighting terrorism since 9/11.
  • Concerning border issues: "'Our border must not be seen as a fence where one country's national security stops and the other's begins. It's not like that in the real world,' he said in a prepared remarks released before the speech."
  • He appealed to the prominent businessmen he was addressing to help improve poorly thought out and poorly implemented border security measures. "'And you in the American business community, who know what border disruptions could mean for business and tourist travel or for closely integrated supply chains, will be crucial in ensuring that (the measures) are implemented only in a pragmatic manner and on a realistic timetable.'''
  • Canada is in Afghanistan for the right reasons and will remain until the mission is accomplished.
  • On Canadian sovereignty in the Arctic: "We will defend our sovereignty over all our territory — including over the islands, waterways and resources of the High Arctic — even if that conflicts with American claims."
  • Canada will continue to pay down its debt and cut taxes.

It is refreshing to see a Canadian prime minister address differences with the US without belligerence, and without giving these differences undue weight.

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Fern said...

Can we clone him and send his twin down here (the the US) to run for President? Of course this would mean that the twin would have to be born in the U.S. since you have to be a citizen-from-birth to run for president, but I'm sure all the details could be worked out...

Janet said...

Takes a while to grow them from scratch, Fern... You want to wait 40-odd years?


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