George Cobabe wrote:

> Marc, the issue about the statement made by the Canadian about Pres Bush was
> not the issue I was talking about.  It was your general and specific distain
> for American actions and motives in the international arena.

Fair enough. I *do* disdain US actions and motives in the international arena. Not
because I have something specific against the US (au contraire), but the US is
acting in am imperialistic way, and has not lived up to the "Covenant of Ether"
regarding Zion. Now, neither has any other part of Zion, including Canada, but we
don't have the power you do. If we did, we'd be just as bad, I can assure you. I
know it's hard to separate what I'm criticizing from seeming like personal
attacks, but I'm just as critical as past British actions, for instance. In fact,
even though the US is kind of the quasi-imperium of the day, its imperialism is
much more benign than past, true imperial powers have been. And as it happens, we
have a Latter-day Saint to thank, in part, for that fact (I always like to point
to the Clark Memorandum as a brake on "manifest destiny" and the Monroe Doctrine).

> The loop I was
> talking about is the issue you bring up, that Canada is unable to do much on
> their own - they are not often truly in the decision making loop.

True enough. Which means our mistakes are relatively minor, too. But we're not
perfect either. And that's the point: when you have great power and act in your
own self-interest, the damage you're capable of inflicting is all the much
greater.

>
> Especially right now when America has been attacked and will do something
> about it with or without others permission.  It is our right and our
> responsibility to do so.  However, you surely realize that your government
> has acted to support the US in this area.
>

True. We consider it our duty as an ally. But at the same time we think that war
is not the way to go on this one, and we are also a little upset at the hypocrisy
of the US in preaching free trade when it allows its own domestic politics to
drive that agenda, because we, like many other countries, have been the victim of
that dynamic.

>
> I apologize for presuming your motives - you are right, I was wrong to do
> so.  It is a lesson we could all learn about other individuals and other
> nations as well.  Perhaps this lesson could also be applied to judging the
> motives of the United States in the international arena.
>
> I am the new guy and perhaps I misunderstood when I read the rules, but I
> thought that politics was a taboo subject.  If not, then this list will be
> very much more interesting, but nowhere near as uplifting as I was hoping.
>

Oh, politics isn't taboo. Whenever things slow down, one of us always starts up a
political subject. It always wakes the list up!

>
> I really enjoy so many of your comments and appreciate your knowledge and
> insight into so many aspects of what I am interested in, that I would not
> want to make anything less than a friend of you.  I hope that you can accept
> and respond to that.  And that you might feel the same way about me and my
> posts, limited as I am in so much of what we discuss.
>

Thanks for the kind thoughts, and they're reciprocated. It's hard to convey the
nuances of one's meaning in email, and it's easy to misunderstand each other. But
as JWR said when he was here, when you get to know someone and you're friends with
them, you can feel freer to disagree with their opinions, knowing it won't be
taken personally. And John and I have "broken bread together" (as have Stephen
Beecroft and I, incidentally. I'm only sad I couldn't cement that relationship
better by accompanying my minister on the past two annual trips to Seattle we
usually try to arrange for him, to speak at Bill Gates' annual World Leaders
Conference.

>
> But please do not beat up on your neighbors to the south, because I, for
> one, will naturally react to your diatribes.
>

Periodically I need to remind people (and myself) why it is that I'm writing the
things I am. It's difficult to separate the culture from the religion and the
personality from the opinion. But I think you'll know what I mean if I were to say
that it could be "worse" -- we could have members from, say, Australia, Austria,
the Netherlands and Denmark on the list ;-)

[that's an in-joke between George and me regarding another list we're on]

--
Marc A. Schindler
Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada -- Gateway to the Boreal Parkland

“Man will occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of the time he will pick
himself up and continue on” – Winston Churchill

Note: This communication represents the informal personal views of the author
solely; its contents do not necessarily reflect those of the author’s employer,
nor those of any organization with which the author may be associated.

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