The tremors of Trump.

Each year at this time, we do a little introspection. While Canada Day 2017 is as joyous as ever, we feel it is the impact of the American President that causes those ground tremors we are feeling. The man seems to stomp a lot.

At first, we were under the impression that he might just ignore Canada. Oh well, so much for that hope! We sent our Prime Minister down to the White House with a welcoming casserole but President Trump was not that interested. It did not seem to matter that Justin thought he had made another friend.

And maybe not. That ignorant man in the White House soon brought up the old chestnut about softwood lumber and threw in milk for good measure. Mr. Trump has never learned how to be a good neighbour. All he accomplished was to drive up the price of new homes on the American west coast and embarrass Wisconsin dairy farmers. The happy lumber kings of Oregon and Washington are making a killing. It was President Trump’s way of saying he wants to renegotiate the North-American trade deal between The U.S., Mexico and Canada.

The only problem is that Mr. Trump’s version of negotiating is to bully, cheat, lie and steal. There is no honour in a Trump style deal. That is how he made his billions whereby he could buy his way to the American presidency.

But deals between sovereign nations are based on good faith. That is an essential component of trade agreements. The objective to be negotiated has to be fair to all parties. And fairness is not just a word on paper, it has to be the perception of all parties.

No doubt both Canadian and Mexican negotiators will also bring their lists of trade irritants to the treaty meetings. Mr. Trump will soon learn that he cannot bully his way to creating advantage from a deal entered in good faith.

While most Canadians appear to consider President Trump to be something of a horse’s ass, we can expect him to be around for a while. He will continue to be stomping on things he should not. He is our neighbour and we might as well get used to him.


Copyright 2017 © Peter Lowry

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