– Who, to use the Donald’s words, will be the ‘Winner’, and who will be the ‘Loser’?
A Brief Commentary by Doug Draper
Posted February 13th, 2016 on Niagara At Large
Of all the email I found in my inbox over the past weekend, the one below was the scariest one – and believe me, in this mucked up world, there are more than a few scary ones.
The one I’m referring to at the moment though outlined the “itinerary” for this Monday, February 13th for Canada’s Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau – one that outlines his day at the White House with the orange-hair, ‘America First’, winner-take-all terminator now occupying the Oval Office.
Here is an abbreviated text of Trudeau’s Itinerary –
Itinerary for Monday, February 13, 2017
7:00 a.m. The Prime Minister will depart for Washington, D.C., United States of America.
9:00 a.m. The Prime Minister will arrive at Joint Base Andrews, near Washington, D.C., United States of America.
10:50 a.m. The Prime Minister will arrive at the White House and be greeted by the President of the United States of America, Donald J. Trump. West Wing White House
11:10 a.m. The Prime Minister and the President of the United States will hold a tête-a-tête meeting. Oval Office, West Wing White House
11:25 a.m. The Prime Minister will hold an expanded bilateral meeting with the President of the United States. Oval Office, West Wing White House
12:15 p.m. The Prime Minister and the President of the United States will participate in a roundtable discussion with women executives. Cabinet Room, West Wing White House
12:50 p.m. The Prime Minister will attend a luncheon given by the President of the United States. Cabinet Room, West Wing White House
2:00 p.m. The Prime Minister and the President of the United States will hold a joint media availability.
3:00 p.m. The Prime Minister will meet with the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, Paul Ryan.
3:40 p.m. The Prime Minister will meet with the Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell.
6:00 p.m. The Prime Minister will depart for Ottawa, Canada.
The question, at the end of the day, is how fairly Canada, as a historically friendly neighbour of the United States, be treated with a new U.S. president, who repeated as recently as a couple of weeks ago following his inauguration that, in his view, his country has been ripped off and taken advantage of by other nations around the world.
What will become of the flow of people and goods across a Canada/U.S. border that collectively contribute tens of billions of dollars to the economies of communities, including communities in the greater Niagara and Toronto areas, and in Buffalo and others across Western New York each year? Will Trump do anything through his infamous executive orders or through other things to create bottlenecks and other barriers that make these crossings dysfunctional?
And what will opening up for review or just plain getting rid of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) mean for Canadian auto workers employed at General Motors, Ford and Chrysler – three American-based corporations Trump has already told he wants to see bring their production lines back home?
What will it means for dairy and poultry farmers in Niagara and other regions of Ontario with Trump and U.S. Republican Party leader Paul Ryan recently saying they want to address market management systems in Canada that limit the importation of cheap dairy and poultry products from the U.S.?
And what about previously agreed to plans to address climate change and move away from carbon-emitting sources of energy like oil and coal? What does it mean for exporting raw crude from the tar sands of Alberta to oil refineries in the southern U.S. through a controversial Keystone pipeline that Trudeau recently pointed to as a renewed “opportunity” for Canada when Trump expressed his determination to brush aside all opposition and get that pipeline built?
I could go on listing concern after concern, and no doubt there will be many others that will be raised in the wake of this February 13th inaugural meeting between Trudeau and a Donald Trump with a long history of boasting that he won’t close a deal with anyone unless he comes out the big winner, and unless any and all those competing for a piece of the prize are castrated or decapitated.
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