Petros asked me to put this these quotes I posted elsewhere as an independent thread.
These quotes from various US Presidents show how the relationship between Canada and US has evolved.
Today’s IRS has completely lost the “nine parts good will and common sense” Harry Truman spoke about or Ronald Reagan’s “spirit of cooperation.” It seems IRS still harbors the attitude of John Adams (“Canada must be ours. Quebec must be taken.”) and Thomas Jefferson (“The acquisition of Canada this year, as far as the neighborhood of Quebec will be a mere matter of marching.”
Just as Adams and Jefferson failed in those attempts, so too will IRS fail in its attempts to pillage its former citizens and ex pats who are leading responsible lives in sovereign countries around the world.
Here are the quotes:
1. John Adams
The Unanimous Voice of the Continent is “Canada must be ours; Quebec must be taken.”
~1776. While serving as a delegate to the Continental Congress.
2. Thomas Jefferson
The acquisition of Canada this year, as far as the neighborhood of Quebec, will be a mere matter of marching, and will give us experience for the attack of Halifax the next, and the final expulsion of England from the American continent.
~1812. In a letter to Colonel William Duane.
3. Franklin Roosevelt
…when I have been in Canada, I have never heard a Canadian refer to an American as a “foreigner.” He is just an “American.” And, in the same way, in the United States, Canadians are not “foreigners,” they are “Canadians.” That simple little distinction illustrates to me better than anything else the relationship between our two countries.
~1936. During a visit to Quebec City.
4. Harry S. Truman
Canadian-American relations for many years did not develop spontaneously. The example of accord provided by our two countries did not come about merely through the happy circumstance of geography. It is compounded of one part proximity and nine parts good will and common sense.
~1947. Address to Canadian Parliament.
5. Dwight Eisenhower
Our forms of government – though both cast in the democratic pattern – are greatly different. Indeed, sometimes it appears that many of our misunderstandings spring from an imperfect knowledge on the part of both of us of the dissimilarities in our forms of government.
~1958. Address to Canadian Parliament.
6. John F. Kennedy
Geography has made us neighbors. History has made us friends. Economics has made us partners. And necessity has made us allies. Those whom nature hath so joined together, let no man put asunder. What unites us is far greater than what divides us.
~1961. Address to Canadian Parliament.
7. Ronald Reagan
We are happy to be your neighbor. We want to remain your friend. We are determined to be your partner and we are intent on working closely with you in a spirit of co-operation.
~1981. Address to Canadian Parliament.
8. Bill Clinton
Canada has shown the world how to balance freedom with compassion and tradition with innovation, in your efforts to provide health care to all your citizens, to treat your senior citizens with the dignity and respect they deserve, to take on tough issues like the move afoot to outlaw automatic weapons designed for killing and not for hunting….
~1995. Address to Canadian House of Commons.
9. George W. Bush
I view the relationship with Canada as a vital relationship for the United States. The relationship, of course, is defined government-to-government. It’s also defined people-to-people, and there’s a lot of people in my country who respect Canada and have great relations with Canadians, and we intend to keep it that way.
~2006. In Cancun, Mexico after meeting with Prime Minister Stephen Harper
“I came to Canada on my first trip as President to underscore the closeness and importance of the relationship between our two nations, and to reaffirm the commitment of the United States to work with friends and partners to meet the common challenges of our time. As neighbors, we are so closely linked that sometimes we may have a tendency to take our relationship for granted, but the very success of our friendship throughout history demands that we renew and deepen our cooperation here in the 21st century. We’re joined together by the world’s largest trading relationship and countless daily interactions that keep our borders open and secure. We share core democratic values and a commitment to work on behalf of peace, prosperity, and human rights around the world.”
– President Obama, Working Visit to Ottawa, 19 February 2009
I have to disagree with Obama on his last point. We are vastly different countries when in comes to democratic values, world peace, prosperity and human rights around the world. If they want to be a better country start following in OUR footsteps but don’t insult us by saying we share similar values!
Changing the perspective, what about conveying a sense of what foreign leaders should be saying to the American president about their view of the relationship? In defense of dual citizens in Canada and elsewhere, it would be timely if Stephen Harper spoke truth to power about the IRS. He could start by paraphrasing Reagan in his speech to Gorbachev at the Brandenburg Gate: “Mr. Obama, tear down this agency.” Continuing: “I have received thousands of letters from American-Canadian citizens–honest, hard-working people, from school teachers to elderly retired citizens–whose lives have been unfairly and criminally gutted by fear of the outrageous, unilaterial and invasive tactics of your tax collection agency–the IRS. This form of cross-border intimidation and bullying of our citizens is inhuman, undemocratic and unacceptable. And, according to your own traditions, unconstitutional. On behalf of our citizens, I demand that you put a stop to it now.” And, to paraphrase Edward R. Murrow: “Mr. President, have you and your Congress no decency, at long last?”
I love it Brash. We should suggest it to Harper–but I suspect he’ll still never say those words. Jack Layton would have!
I liked the Clinton quote the most – Too bad nobody will ever be able to introduce universal healthcare and get guns under control in the US..