We’re another year older. But are we the wiser for it?
It’s been quite the ride, much of it due in no small part to the unpredictability of the new “Le Grand Orange” south of the border.
The past 12 months are a great summary of our history, and indeed, our DNA. We came. We tried. Oh well, we tried. Sorry.
NAFTA is on life support. The on-again, off-again negotiations with constantly moving goalposts are making us all dizzy.
Tariffs go into effect today on both sides of the border that could send parts of both Canada and the US into a totally avoidable recession.
The ongoing uncertainty has Bay Street market-makers betting our collective pensions on the wind of the day. None of them are any smarter than the rest of us. Playing the market today’s political climate is informed guesswork, at best.
The reality is that as long as the current administration is in power south of the border, uncertainty in the US translates to uncertainty for Canada - and every other corner of the world.
So what’s a country to do?
If we play Trump’s game, we lose. We’re good, if not great, but let’s face it, the other guys have a stronger hand.
If we pander to Trump, we lose. Give him an inch, and he’ll take a mile. That’s been his track record in everything he’s ever done. It’s folly to believe otherwise.
Our reality is this. We have one thing on our side, and it’s not oil reserves, abundant natural resources or even poutine. Canada’s edge can be summed up in two words: term limits.
So don’t fret Canada.
We’ve been around for 151 years. Our neighbours to the South are dealing with a petulant child going through his terrible twos.
We’ll survive. We always do.
And we’ll be the stronger for it. We always are.
The strength of national character is being challenged. To date, the responses from both ends of the political spectrum demonstrate a unity of purpose and conviction that do not exist in today’s USA. We are one in defending our country, our brand, our values and our jobs.
Here’s hoping we keep it up; that we continue to stand together in our 152nd trip around the sun.
In the interim, remember that, for all we can find wrong with our world, we have a whole lot of things going right. Just ask any American about the soaring costs of healthcare and education.
And that’s not something to be sorry about.
——— Written by Rick Murray, former Managing Partner and Chief Digital Strategist at NATIONAL Public Relations, and now Managing Partner at SHIFT Communications, sister company of NATIONAL