The State Department on Canada

The U.S. State Department maintains an online encyclopedia, if you will, of the countries of the world. The page for Canada was recently updated and, thought it seems to be an otherwise accurate and complete summary of political, economic and social conditons here, there are a a couple of oddities on it. First, the only photo on the page is a picture of the legislative buildings in Victoria, the seat of British Columbia's government. There is no explanation at the page that this is the legislative home of a province and I wonder if many Americans or others who visit would mistake this as the home of our national government. Would you put up a page with basic facts and figures about the U.S. government and throw up a picture of the Texas State Capitol? Of course, you wouldn't.

The page also notes Prime Minister Harper's meeting with U.S. President George Bush. It notes that their first meeting was at the so-called Three Amigos summit in Cancun, Mexico in March, 2006. True. The site says they met a few months later in Washington. True again. But then the State department skips forward saying they met again at the Three Amigos summit in Montebello, Que. this summer. They certainly did meet there, but they also ran into each other at two G8 meetings and two Asia-Pacific Partnership meeting in the meantime. Perhaps the State Department is referring to formal bi-lateral meetings.

Some other notes from the page — nothing wrong here, so far as I can tell, just interesting stuff. The quotes are lifted from the U.S. State Dept.:

  • We have a $1.25-trillion economy. (2006 numbers). The U.S., I believe, is a $13-trillion economy.
  • “Canada views good relations with the U.S. as crucial to a wide range of interests, and often looks to the U.S. as a common cause partner promoting democracy, transparency, and good government around the world. Nonetheless, it sometimes pursues policies at odds with our own. Canada decided in 2003 not to contribute troops to the U.S.-led military coalition in Iraq (although it later contributed financially to Iraq's reconstruction and provided electoral advice). Other recent examples are: Canada's leadership in the creation of the UN-created International Criminal Court (ICC) for war crimes, which the U.S. opposes due to fundamental flaws in the treaty that leave the ICC vulnerable to exploitation and politically motivated prosecutions; its decision in early 2005 not to participate directly in the U.S. missile defense program; and its strong support for the Ottawa Convention to ban anti-personnel mines. The U.S., while the world's leading supporter of demining initiatives, declined to sign the treaty due to unmet concerns regarding the protection of its forces and allies, particularly those serving on the Korean Peninsula, as well as the lack of exemptions for mixed munitions.”
  • “Canada is a significant source for the U.S. of marijuana and synthetic drugs (methamphetamines, ecstasy), as well as precursor chemicals and over-the-counter drugs used to produce illicit synthetic drugs. Implementation and strengthening of regulations in Canada and increased U.S.-Canadian law enforcement cooperation have had a substantial impact in reducing trafficking of precursor chemicals and synthetic drugs, but cannabis cultivation, because of its profitability and relatively low risk of penalty, remains a thriving industry. Canada increased maximum penalties for methamphetamine offenses in August 2005 and implemented new controls over various precursors in November 2005. Canada is active in international efforts to combat terrorist financing and money laundering.”
  • “The two nations share the world's largest and most comprehensive trading relationship, which supports millions of jobs in each country. In 2006, total trade between the two countries exceeded $500 billion. The two-way trade that crosses the Ambassador Bridge between Detroit, Michigan and Windsor, Ontario equals all U.S. exports to Japan. “

One thought on “The State Department on Canada”

  1. What about the “STATE DEPARTMENT” on this blog??
    When repeatedly asked to identify the CBC reporter who made up questions for the LIBS…..stone silence.
    Why will the media NOT report on themselves (other than to share the same CP story, briefly outlining the facts). Why no “investigative” reporting into Ms. Ericksons venture? Are you trying to protect one of your own David??

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *