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iverglas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-04-04 02:53 PM
Response to Reply #37
41. indeed
I don't agree with your definition of blame. Blame is nothing more than censure and condemnation.

And if you think that "censure and condemnation" is an apt description of what Jack Layton said, you're going to have to present something to support that theory.

You've pretty much made my point right there.

Layton proposes to lobby the US to make changes in its policies and practices.

If my neighbour had no idea that his/her dandelions were infecting my lawn, it might be wise of me to explain the problem and seek a joint resolution for it. Censuring and condemning my neighbour might be both inappropriate (my neighbour might be blind, or his/her own lawn might be getting infected from somewhere else, or his/her landlord might have prohibited him/her from killing dandelions) and really counter-productive.

Clearly Mr. Layton (New Democratic Party prime ministerial candidate?) is laying fault on the U.S. To continue...
and an NDP government would lobby the Americans for better gun control south of the border to improve things in this country, Jack Layton said Thursday.
In other words, since the root of Canada's gun problems are in the U.S. the solution is likewise with the U.S.


Nope, I just don't see "laying fault". I know it's really hard for a lot of USAmericans to see the difference between blaming and problem-solving, as I've noted before, but there really is a difference.

Jack has identified a source of a problem. He proposes to attempt to do something about it. Asking the US to do something to address the elements of the problem that are caused by its action/inaction is *not* the same as blaming or laying fault on the US.

Here, Mr. Layton qualifies his statements somewhat. From reading this news article, it seems clear to me that blame is not an incorrect word in the least. It is entirely appropriate.

It would be appropriate IF you had identified somewhere where Jack said the US is doing something bad. He did NOT say that.

If my neighbour had sown a bag of wildflower seeds that turned out to be half dandelions, the neighbour's actions would be a cause of my dandelion problem. The neighbour would have done nothing bad, and I would not blame my neighbour for my problem. I would seek the neighbour's cooperation in solving it.

US policies, which may be in no way bad in themselves, are a cause of problems in Canada. There may be no fault at all in the US's actions and policies. Those actions and policies could still cause problems in Canada.

Let us not mince words, please. These are smuggled weapons bound for nefarious purposes. "Illegally imported" implies to me some duty was not paid or some error in paperwork is holding them at customs.

But I'm famous for mincing words. "Illegally imported" is the technically correct term, actually used to describe these firearms, by those whose work involves referring to them. I had no ulterior motive in using it, I simply used the term that is widely and correctly used.

The most likely buyer for a black market weapon is not a collector or sportsman, but a criminal. These weapons are going to equip drug smugglers, another problem the U.S. and Canada share along with a border, to further their criminal enterprises.

Yuppers. As I in fact said: "law-abiding gun owners" are not the market for these turkeys.

In my opinion, I do not see these statements by Mr. Layton are significantly different that some our officials make with regard to smuggling across the U.S. border with Mexico. Often our politicians will say "only if Mexico would enact such-and-such reform, our drug problem will be less" or "if Mexico held up its end of agreements" and things like that.

And you don't think so?

Surely the obvious difference, however, is that Mexico *can't* hold up its end of the agreement, etc. The huge economic disparity between Mexico and the US and the huge and insatiable market for drugs in the US make it inevitable that people in Mexico will want to supply that market. (Perhaps the people further south who I assume are the original source of that supply in many cases should be included in the equation.) Mexico just doesn't have the means to reduce the supply originating in Mexico, or passing through Mexico. There is no deterrent to desperation. The only real way to reduce the supply is to offer incentives for other activities, not to try to impose disincentives for that one.

There simply is no huge and insatiable market for illicit firearms in Canada, and there are no desperately poor people in the US who cannot be deterred from supplying it. The US does have the means to reduce the supply.

In the case of Mexico and drugs entering the US, it just isn't a matter of political will. In the case of the US and firearms entering Canada, it is.

I do not totally agree with this statement. The root of the problem does not lie wholly outside of Canada, just as the problems of drug abuse in the U.S. does not lie wholly outside the U.S.

The source of the illegally imported firearms lies entirely outside Canada, by definition. To try to solve the problem without acting on the source would be, as I said, an expensive finger in a porous dike.

The root cause of crime, and the demand for the firearms, is indeed complex. The root cause of the supply of firearms is a good deal simpler.

Whatever became of the US right wing's fondness for supply-side economics?? Surely the Bush administration and its friends should understand that what we have here is a trickle-down situation, and that in this case what's trickling down isn't actually something that the people at the bottom want.

Certianly, the problems of drug and gun smuggling is more complex than one facet of U.S. law.

And as you've acknowledged, nobody has said that they aren't!

I still don't know what earthly sense it makes to enable any criminal in Canada, in the non-utopian reality of the here and now, to get hold of a firearm simply by having somebody pick one up for him/her at a gun show in the US and drive it over the bridge. Demand will not be eliminated in our lifetimes; should we just throw up our hands and do nothing to reduce supply?

You do realize that if every car entering Canada were searched for illicit firearms, Florida's economy would crash.

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