'When you're powerful like you are, you guys, is the time to be nice.'

Paul Wells usually makes some sense, but not today. He's falling into the increasingly common bit of idiocy which holds that strong disagreement is a form of censorship. Raising your voice is apparently the new oppression.
At the risk of cutting and pasting from a wildly incomprehensible string of sentences, Jean Chrétien had told the CBC that "the rest of the world" -- "not only the Americans, the Western world" -- "is a bit too selfish, and that there is a lot of resentment." These thoughts occurred to him, he told Peter Mansbridge, at the end of the day on Sept. 11, 2001. "And I knew that it was the inspiration of it."

Wells then proceeds to 'cut and paste' a number of statements from a number of sources in an attempt to prove some point that even he can't articulate.
Perhaps you're wondering what my point is. Sometimes I wonder myself. I guess it's that one way to celebrate the democratic values that madmen attacked 367 days ago is to stop shouting at one another. Did American arrogance cause the Sept. 11 attacks? No. Shame on anyone who would suggest it did. But shame, too, on anyone who would shout down a fellow citizen for trying to find a deeper meaning and a broader resolution.
There it is... Wells is just engaged in some juvenile contrarian exercise. If everyone agrees that Chretien said something horrifying then he will rush to Chretien's defence even if he has to cobble together a ridiculous defence from threads picked up from the library and the movie theater.

From a speech by Bill Clinton: "We must get rid of our arrogant self-righteousness so that we don't claim for ourselves things that we deny for others."

From the Declaration of Independance; "a decent respect to the opinions of mankind"

From the movie Spiderman: "great power brings great responsibility"

Apparently even Wells doesn't have the stomach to defend what Chretien actually said so he's decided to swap in some quotes that have at least a surface similarity to Chretien's words and hope that no-one notices the difference. Wells simply discards context entirely and hopes that no-one notices.

We noticed Paul , a very poor effort indeed.

A good column by Margaret Wente about the Americans and their culpability for 9/11.
And the failure of America was not that it is rich and greedy, but that its leaders forgot one fact of life. You can't protect your freedom by making yourself inoffensive to your enemies.

I hope someone reads that aloud to Jean Chretien


The Liberals are doing damage control and this is how little they have to work with nowadays...

Somebody just posted this to a discussion group. It's the very freshest of Liberal spin on Chretien's comments regarding the "shared" responsibility for the terrorist attacks of a year ago.

Subject: PM interview / entrevue du PM
Date: Thu, 12 Sep 2002 16:07:32 -0400

September 12, 2002


It is being wrongly reported today that in an interview broadcast on CBC television last night Prime Minister Jean Chrétien singled out the United States for responsibility for the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.

In fact, in response to a question about how he thought the world had changed on September 11th, the Prime Minister took the opportunity to point to the need for all Western developed countries to reflect on the long-term consequences of the growing divide between rich and poor nations - a divide which has clearly been used by fanatics to fan resentment toward the developed world. It is a gross misconstruction of his remarks to suggest that he was blaming the United States for the attacks. Indeed, the forceful action Canada has taken, shoulder to shoulder with the United States, to track down and bring to justice those behind the attacks is unequivocal proof of the views of the Prime Minister, the government and the people of Canada as to who is responsible for September 11th .

In order for Canadians to come to an unfiltered judgement as to the intent and meaning of the Prime Minister’s remarks, a transcript of the relevant portion of the interview is enclosed. In this regard, we also encourage Canadians to view the interview as it was broadcast on the CBC. It was part of a documentary entitled “Untold Story” and can be viewed on the CBC website at cbc.ca.


Peter Mansbridge: By the end of the day, what were you thinking about in terms of how the world had changed?

Prime Minister Chrétien: But I’ve said that it is a division in the world that is building up. And I knew that it was the inspiration of it. For me, I think that the rest of the world is a bit too selfish, and that there is a lot of resentment. I felt it when I dealt with the African file for the Summit of the G8. You know, the poor, relatively, get poorer all the time. And the rich are getting richer all the time. You know, now we see the abuse of the system with problems in the United States at this moment with the corporate world, you know. When you think that, you know, you have to let go somebody in the Cabinet because perhaps relatively very minor things…of guidelines. And there was billions of dollars that were basically stolen from the shareholders. And we have to you know solving the problems when you read history. Everybody don’t know when to stop. There is a moment, you know, when you have to stop. There is a moment when you have very powerful (inaudible).

I said that in New York one day. I said, you know talking, it was Wall Street, and it was a crowd of capitalists, of course, and they were complaining because we have a normal relation with Cuba, and this and that, and, you know, we cannot do everything we want. And I said...if I recall, it was probably these words: ‘When you’re powerful like you are, you guys, is the time to be nice.’ And it is one of the problems. You know, you cannot exercise your powers to the point that of humiliation for the others. And that is what the Western world, not only the Americans, the Western world has to realize, because they are human beings too, and there are long term consequences if you don’t look hard at the reality in 10 or 20, or 30 years from now. And I do think that the Western world is going to be too rich in relation to the poor world. And necessarily, you know, we look upon us being arrogant, self satisfying, greedy and with no limits. And the 11th of September is an occasion for me to realize that it’s even more.”

There you have it. The Liberals are reduced to claiming "gibberish" as their defence.

The CBC is quickly falling inline with the new spin and is now claiming that Chretien was scolding the "Western World" rather than directing his comments at the USA.

I call Bullshit... Chretien was talking about the US from point A to point Z. His "western world" cover is nothing but a sham, a deliberately transparent euphemism meant to appeal to the smug superiority of those Canadians who profess their love of their neighbour but enjoy a secret thrill of affirmation when that neighbour suffers a tragedy. You can almost see the exaggerated wink that Chretien telegraphs as he takes on some of the burden of shame that has to be borne by the "western world". We, the noble Canadians will gently scold the US and temper that scolding by speaking in terms of "we" and "us" but it's hard to ignore the true message;

I think that the rest of the world is a bit too selfish (not us)
I felt it when I dealt with the African file (not us, me)
now we see the abuse of the system with problems in the United States at this moment with the corporate world (not us)
When you’re powerful like you are, you guys, is the time to be nice (not us, you)

Nice how Chretien also slips in another denial of his own govt's culpability for corruption in the middle of wagging his finger at "the west" isn't it? You'd almost think he wasn't serious about including Canada in 'the west.'