They Were Our Friends
The US ambassador insists that the Canadian government has to return to negotiations
on the sale of softwoods. He makes this statement in spite of the fact that the US has again lost on this issue in arbitration, and hints that the US doesn't actually have to return the billions in fees it has collected since the beginning of this dispute.
The basic claim is that the Canadian government doesn't charge timber companies enough for the logs they cut in Canadian government forests, and the US has been collecting a fee to increase the price of Canadian wood products.
The Canadians referred the matter to a NAFTA panel, which keeps ruling in favor of Canada. What's to negotiate? The matter is settled. Apparently the US thinks it can bully the Canadians into accepting less than they're owed.
Meanwhile there's a shortage of plywood and the price is spiking, raising already outrageous building costs.
The US is also dumping water
out of Devil's Lake in North Dakota that will end up in Lake Winnipeg, an important Canadian fishery and water shed.
The Canadians wanted a review by the bi-lateral commission on US-Canadian water issues, but the US just started pumping. The Canadians are worried about pollution and invasive species ending up in their waters.
I could be wrong, but I thought that the US and Canada were friends, at least for the last century [no need to go into that little trek Benedict Arnold and some of my relatives took, or the Maine and Oregon problems]. Why is the US being such jerks? They sell us oil and timber that we don't have. If they get mad, they can sell those things to Asia.