Vagabonding through Russia

I have no problem whatsoever with the Governor General taking an entourage through Russia and environs and spending $1 million of our money to do so. However I do take exception to her comment, quoted in the Globe and Mail:

“I think the visit is important to the people who are coming… to show Canada as it really is,” Ms. Clarkson said.

I have no idea what Canada as it really is actually is, if fact I’m not sure such a concept could be done justice to. However I’m fairly confident that the Governor General’s entourage of intelligensia is not Canada as it really is, at least not in any way approaching a broad, honest reflection.


Alan's picture
Alan on September 22, 2003 - 20:49 Permalink

I am sure Mr. GG will bring a selection of his famous wineceller we paid for to display Canadian drinking habits.

Lana's picture
Lana on September 22, 2003 - 21:24 Permalink

Well, she’s not going to take three hosers wearing plaid shirts with her.

Wayne's picture
Wayne on September 22, 2003 - 21:33 Permalink

What is wrong with plaid shirts? Are those who like plaid being preached to again by pretensious fashion experts? What a snob! Get off your high horse, lady. Sheesh…somebody get me a beer.

Ken's picture
Ken on September 22, 2003 - 21:41 Permalink

Send Lana & Wayne to Russia, to represent PEI.

AbuIskander's picture
AbuIskander on September 22, 2003 - 21:45 Permalink

Where are Doug and Bob when we really need them? I feel the need to dash out and buy some back bacon. A million bucks would fund a lot of backpackers for a gap year and I have picked up enough of them around Europe (hitching — get your mind out of the gutter, Willson) to recognise they are Canada’s best ambassadors.

Wayne's picture
Wayne on September 22, 2003 - 22:04 Permalink

Da, da Ka-na-da…Nyet, nyet So-vee-yet”..and “Shy-bou”.

Thats all the Russian I know, except for Vodka.

Lana's picture
Lana on September 22, 2003 - 22:54 Permalink

It wasn’t meant to be snooty.. it was meant as a reference to “Bob and Doug”… thanks for playing Ken.

Dougie's picture
Dougie on September 23, 2003 - 00:08 Permalink

I wd lkie to go. i haf lots to tell. i grwo goud tomattoes. i cood canjun. i go cheep.

Peter Rukavina's picture
Peter Rukavina on September 23, 2003 - 03:33 Permalink

I listened to Adrian Clarkson defend the trip to Don Newman on CBC Newsworld today. While my criticism stands, I do understand more about how, in the elite world of regal diplomacy, it’s possible to see how a bunch of experts and high culture figures is a “good cross-section of Canadians.” I suppose it would be unreasonable to expect the GG to travel with people she didn’t respect or admire, as she’s got to vouch for them.

Kevin's picture
Kevin on September 23, 2003 - 07:51 Permalink

This is a perfectly fine Canadian fuss. What would we have our head of state do instead? If we are to have a system with a GG then we ought to have the GG do stuff that no other Canadian can do.

However, JRS ought to have picked either the official “GG’s spouse” role, or continued with his career. To accept the title (Excellency or something…. it goes to the spouce) and then continue to operate his business from that office is inappropriate. It hasn’t been much, but he has been confusingly active in both worlds publicly. Raulston-Saul seems to care little about it. I would have thought that a career as well known as his would have triggered some appropriate distance so as to not conflict with the special duties his wife has been up to.

And so I give fairly good marks to Clarkson the GG but she needs a better behaved husband; in fact I don’t think there’d be a fuss at all right now if he wasn’t well connected to the folk she’s taking with her on this Russian rendesvous.

Wayne's picture
Wayne on September 23, 2003 - 13:56 Permalink

I guess she likes to travel with who she considers interesting people, eh?

Peter Rukavina's picture
Peter Rukavina on September 23, 2003 - 16:46 Permalink

I didn’t say the people weren’t interesting, I simply said they don’t represent Canada as she appears to suggest they do. That doesn’t mean that I wouldn’t want to have them all over to dinner sometime.

Oliver B's picture
Oliver B on September 23, 2003 - 17:12 Permalink

Do any of these representatives come from humble and/or diverse beginnings, Peter? It sounds like you’re looking at the lack of diversity in what they’ve done with their lives and not at possibile diversity in their backgrounds.

Ken's picture
Ken on September 23, 2003 - 17:48 Permalink

Consider a new concept for head-of-state: a first nations representative instead of the Queens representative which seems awkward for a sovereign nation like Canada.
Elevating the original inhabitants of this land to head of state seems fitting and uniquely Canadian.
Why not?

Wayne's picture
Wayne on September 23, 2003 - 17:55 Permalink

Better english would be…”I guess she likes to travel with those whom she considers interesting, eh?” After all, interesting,is in the eyes of the beholder, n’est pas? I’ll say this, there is a lot more acceptance of public dollars spent on rinks to subsidize millionaire hockey-player salaries then there was over this cultural crusade.

Wayne's picture
Wayne on September 23, 2003 - 17:56 Permalink

Bingo, Ken. Right on!

Humblebub's picture
Humblebub on September 23, 2003 - 19:20 Permalink

<chuckle>..Wayne, I am interested.

Cynthia's picture
Cynthia on September 24, 2003 - 02:49 Permalink

Haven’t seen a picture of Curtis in a while. It used to be a regular Guardian feature at one time.
He’s looking pretty dapper.

Ann's picture
Ann on September 24, 2003 - 13:54 Permalink

Another Island connection: Louise Flemming, former owner of Ragweed Press, is an aide to John Ralston Saul.

besi's picture
besi on February 1, 2004 - 14:13 Permalink