Wednesday, July 20, 2005

The Age of Re-Innocence

I just love this! Love it! And I love that it’s not just a specified group of “ethnic” claimants asking for redress of past wrongs, but that we’ve bothered to draw-up a list of “expected” claimants too. A projection of potential victims.

I love the image this conjures: a group of profusely sweating and suited backroom Liberal toadies sitting around going: “What can we expect next? How much can we pay them? How do we keep these hands clean? Out, damned spot! Out!”

I love the prospect of “dark chapters in Canada’s past”; or the choice of words to describe the enterprise’s motivating force “to bring closure to the redress issue.” I love the list of requirements of the government above and beyond financial compensation: that it offer a ‘“fully [sic] and unqualified apology,”’ that it express ‘“profound regret”’ and ‘“deep sorrow.”’ Check, check, check. You wanna print that up and send it off to, uh, let’s see here, to claimant D file number 317 dash 6. Thanks, Marla. Next!

I love that—of the list of groups that “may file claims”—both Jews and Germans are covered. We’re going to compensate the Jews that we refused admittance to the country, many of whom returned to a death camp (we’ll work out the logistics later, Marla); and we’re going to compensate the German-Canadians that were incarcerated during both wars—both of which, incidentally, were fought against the Germans. The second one more specifically against the Nazis. You know: the guys that slaughtered 6 million Jews.

Signed, sealed, delivered.

I love it. I love it. I love it! I love that we are able to reduce apparently irreducible injustices from “dark chapters in Canada’s past” to a matter of litigation. We are, indeed, the measure of all nations. And here is our formula: throw a blanket of cash at a problem; spare no manner of (written) apology or appearance of self-flagellation; then, obviously, revise historical objectives to suit same. Yes, you too can be retroactively guilt-free!

Now, what are those bastard Americans up to? Shall we tell them?