Friday, June 08, 2007

Dear Shelagh

Dear Shelagh:

I just heard about your wonderful contest called "The Seven Wonders of Canada." Is it too late to enter? I hope not because I’ve got some surefire entries that I just know you’re going to love:

The Senate
This has got to be one of the most amazing political wonders not just in Canada but in the entire world. It’s a big red chamber filled with unelected senators who draw big salaries and expense allowances until they’re 75 despite doing very little. And then they get a pension! Shelagh, it’s truly amazing.

The Notwithstanding Clause
Santa, subordinate, main. All great clauses to be sure. But the greatest one of all is our very own notwithstanding clause. What other country boldly proclaims a list of rights and freedoms and then allows legislatures to opt out? Only we have the courage to define contingent and temporary rights. It makes you proud to be a Canadian.

Don Cherry
Wasn’t he voted one of the top ten of your "Greatest Canadians" a few years ago? Well, rightly so. Don Cherry is a national treasure, a true institution or at least a candidate for one. The true wonder is that he gets paid with taxpayer dollars to tell us how stupid we are. And isn’t that what Canada is all about, Shelagh?

The Bloc Québécois
Speaking of things Canadian , the Bloc Québécois is perhaps the most amazing Canadian wonder of all. What other country would fully fund and recognize a political party whose sole aim is to break up the country? Shelagh, I couldn’t be more proud.

P. E. I.
The Americans take pride in their recognition of such minor states as Delaware, Rhode Island and the Dakotas. But they’ve got nothing on us. We give full provincial status to a little island that otherwise would barely qualify as a municipality. Where else could an entire economy survive on only potatoes and Anne of Green Gables? Only in Canada, eh Shelagh?

The RCMP
What would Canada be without the Mounties? Other countries have a national police force. We, on the other hand, have an amazing organization that, like Canada itself, is a mishmash of responsibilities and jurisdictions. And given its predilection for screw-ups and scandals, Shelagh, it’s truly a wonder that it still exists.

CBC-TV
And finally, Shelagh, CBC-TV itself has to qualify as one of Canada’s seven wonders. It’s a TV network both in French and English that’s publicly funded but hardly anyone watches. Except for hockey and American-made shows. Shelagh, it’s a video wonder that’s authentically Canadian.

1 comment:

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