Tuesday, May 01, 2007

avast ye torturers and arts hounds

How could they do this to us? We've done everything right! First, we totally folded on softwood at a huge cost not only to us but to an entire industry that is ingrained in the historical bedrock of this continent. Then we slashed and burned arts funding including foreign office arts funding because obviously promoting canadian arts and culture, despite the program's long-term success, serves only to more fully and interestingly educate our neighbors and partners about us as well as providing exposure to Canadians of international audiences. Who needs that? We completely ignore the human rights nightmare that is the First Nations reservation system, for god's sake, we even included Indian protesters in a military anti-terror handbook! What more do they want? We never once mentioned the reconstruction or lack thereof after Katrina, why pressure our neighbors with things they already know? We all but eliminated the office of the Status of Women in Canada and Kyoto will not now or ever be upheld while this government is in power.

We have done everything we could possibly do short of privatizing healthcare and offering government issue military-surplus bombs to plant at abortion clinics to appease the burning-bush administration and how are we repaid for all of this shameless toadying? We narrowly avoid getting put on a watchlist for internet piracy. Now I know we seem like a huge behemoth, a great, threatening cultural giant with a frozen heart and teeth carved from the bedrock of the Canadian Shield. Long has it stood that Canada was poised to take over the US and time and again America barely escaped with it's identity. I can see where the historical precedent might incite the american government to arms against the electronic subverter of it's industry, having for the most part taken over one by one. Not to mention the creation of the CRTC and the CBC, ostensibly to promote Canadian culture within it's own borders given the influx of american television. But it's not like these offices actually work at all. I mean come on, they barely have enough funding to keep their acronyms!

I know internet communications can seem threatening. Disney needs some reassurance that it's government is willing to prevent copies of the Lion King being overtaken and redistributed like they did to the Asian white lion cub movie. Makers of The Ring and The Grudge need to know that their government will protect their intellectual property which they rightfully copied down and translated into English from Vietnamese. Not only that, it's important too to remember that even though downloaders are as a demographic the highest volume buyers, and that even though no artist has ever or will ever suffer from having an audience, people who work for sony marketing work really really hard. Their chairs deserve to be stuffed to the fullest capacity so their creative minds don't get distracted by an uncomfortable ass-ache. Remember people, we're not out to sell music and movies, we're selling round pieces of plastic with music and movies printed on them. It's a hot commodity, and it MUST be regulated.

We are in the middle of a torture debate. Afghan human rights workers and prisoners are being tortured and we are the people who knowingly handed them over. We are not rebuilding in their country or ours. The PM has been given reading material by local artists who wonder what type of country we will be without artists or art. I think there might be a book about that somewhere...

So how do we convince the priority-centred and clear-thinking american office of homeland security? Arts funding! Send our writers and actors and painters and singers and graphic designers and newscasters to america to better promote our culture and way of life into....oh, wait, oh yeah. Trebek and Dr. Evil and Celine are exports from up here. Alright well perhaps an apology is in order, but just this time.

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