The Vancouver Scrum

On the move!

Agh! You’re still here? My new site and weblog, is now up and running; new posts are building up over there, never to be mirrored here. Go! What are you waiting for? All the stuff worth keeping has been migrated over to the new server, and I don’t anticipate making any more posts here.

Bloggers and webmasters: Update your links! Simply replace with in your blogrolls or bookmarks to point to the new site. Old posts will remain on this server for as long as the people at Blogger/Google allow them to remain; unfortunately, I’m not going to bother to come up with any way of converting permalinks on this blog to their corresponding posts on the new site. Yes, I plead laziness. I also realize the irony of switching away from Blogger just it starts to add features that the demanding blog nerds insist upon.

Thanks for reading and linking, and see you over at!

—Ian King, December 13, 2004

Saturday, September 14, 2002

Marcus Gee doesn't get it (again.)

Not that I should expect much from the Globe and Mail's hawkish foreign-affairs columnist. However, he must be corrected about his rant against Jean Chrétien's comments about global inequity.

Gee claims that Chrétien is playing the "blame the victim" game. Rubbish. In no way did his comments place ANY of the blame for the outrages of September 11, 2001 upon the United States of America! The Prime Minister did surmise this:

"You cannot exercise your powers to the point of humiliation for the others. That is what the Western world -- not only the Americans, the Western world -- has to realize. Because they (those in the third world) are human beings, too. There are long-term consequences . . ."

And how can anyone say that this is blaming America for the terrorist attacks? It's not. As best I can tell, Jean Chrétien is saying that there are consequences to exercising power improperly. Like famine. Or disease. Or the unrealized potential of great swaths of humanity. Or difficulties in future negotiations with those countries who have been poorly treated in the past.

The Prime Minster was saying that Western leaders should look at the consequences of their dealings ten, twenty, or thirty years down the road.
He said that the occasion of September 11th, 2001 made him realize that the powerful must do a better job in their dealings with the rest of the world. Yes, it's perhaps not the most appropriate stimulus to make him conteplate the Western world's relations with the rest of the world. However, it was just that -- something that got him thinking; not to blame America for the outrages of 9-11, but about something different, but still important.

Chrétien was, if you look at the interview with Peter Mansbridge in context, describing the thing about which he thought in the aftermath of September 11. Is it unacceptable to think of other things that are not directly tied to the attack, but may have been pushed towards the front of mind in the aftermath of it?

Well, to one who sees any comments about how the Western world should do a better job in its dealings as "blaming the victim," maybe. But to many people, it's not. It is possible for the Prime Minister (even this one) to walk and chew gum at the same time. If you can't separate Chrétien's comments in his interview with Mansbridge from his reaction to 9-11, and the steps that the government has taken since that fateful day, then perhaps you should give your head a shake.

So should Marcus Gee.

Watch the Prime Minister's remarks on Real Video from
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