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Looking at the bright side of a non-working cannon: it can’t blow you up.

Don Martin of the National Post takes Foreign Affairs Minister Lawrence Cannon heavily to task in his column today. The dispute with the UAE over airspace rights, and then the closing of our military base there, the botched UN Security Council seat, and the fact he was being two-faced over the Omar Khadr plea bargain are all listed – all examples of someone who appears to be out of his depth.

There is a second phase of criticism however that appears down the column – apparently Minister Cannon has been rather neglectful with meeting any of the foreign ambassadors here: he’s much too busy apparently:

..the Embassy newspaper has just published an interesting article which suggests Mr. Cannon can’t even deliver on the job’s most basic function — schmoozing with the diplomatic corps. The must-read Ottawa publication for ambassadors suggests Canada is snubbing them by denying access, or footdragging on meeting requests. “Many top envoys say they have requested meetings with Mr. Cannon in the last few years and failed to secure one,” the paper says. This envoy’s earlier appointment was to Washington where he’d wait a week or two for a meeting with the Secretary of State. In Canada, just getting a response to an appointment request can take three or four months.

My first immediate reaction to this was: what in the world is Cannon so busy doing? I thought Canada’s Economic Action Plan photo-ops were winding down. But, my second reaction was: after reading the litany of goof-ups that this guy has done of late, I’m not so sure not interacting with foreign emissaries is a bad thing for the country. It might save Canada further international embarrassment from another Cannon goofup, and the neglect of our relations with other countries might be the least of all possible negative outcomes.

3 comments to Looking at the bright side of a non-working cannon: it can’t blow you up.

  • Redrum

    So, the tab’s in: Cannon’s ineptness — and PMS’s hissy fit — on the UAE file has cost us a cool $300M.

    www + .theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/ottawa-notebook/cost-of-relocating-dubai-base-tops-300-million-source-says/article1786194/

  • GREAT TITLE… LOL

  • Redrum

    Well, the way the con-bot talking points have tried to spin it (and why they may have lost the UN vote over this fundamental failure of his to engage with the diplomats he’s supposed to be engaging) is:

    (Sniff) He’s got no choice: in the precarious minority gov’t environment, it’s gotta be all hands on deck all the time, ready to vote, lest the gov’t fall.

    Which is crap, since the actual confidence votes are, what, just the ‘money bills,’ which are few & far between, and I’ll bet we can find the attendance records of other MPs (and probably Cannon himself) are anything but 100%. Plus not all the diplomats & ambassadors he’s been blowing off are in NY: lots are here in Ottawa, as well. Plus it turns out (see the Embassy article: : http + ://embassymag.ca/page/view/diplomats-11-03-2010 ) that Peter Kent, who’s, um, the OTHER Foreign Affairs Minister (except just for South America), is doing just fine in meeting with the rep’s of the countries in HIS areas of responsibility.

    So, no, the TRUE reason is probably the one found in Lawrence Cannon’s book (excerpt at: www + .theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/a-day-in-the-life-of-stephen-harper/article1750492/singlepage/#articlecontent :

    The Harper gov’t is all about training the poodles up for Question Period, with extensive preps & rehearsals every single day for their BS non-responses & “Yo momma” (or, oh yeah? well you guys did such&such, 10 years ago) retorts.

    And maybe Cannon’s such a dim bulb he’s got to put ALL his energies & limited brain cells into memorizing his lines for that each day, such that, gosh darn it, he just doesn’t have TIME for anything else.

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