kingston & the islands' NDP Blog

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Happy Winter Solstice

Happy Winter Solstice! Jack Layton celebrated the solstice in Yellowknife today. What a great place to celebrate the solstice. The farther North you are, the better news it is that the days are getting longer from here on out. Jack also took the opportunity to talk about Canada-US relations and Canadian sovereignty, which is particularly important in the North with the US and Denmark already eyeing the still-frozen Northwest Passage. He's spot on when he says we'll need a federal government ready to stand up for Canadian interests in the North. The US and Denmark don't recognize Canada's claim to sovereignty on our Arctic waters, and that's likely to become a major bone of contention as global warming makes it a viable shipping route. No one's sure when the Northwest Passage will come up as an international issue -- probably not in the next five years, but it's possible. It's a great example of an issue that's relatively obscure right now, but potentially a huge problem for our country in the future. A strong national leader has to keep his eye on literally hundreds of such considerations. And there are thousands more issues that make a big difference to some Canadians but that most haven't even heard of. Jack's decision to touch on the Northern sovereignty issue in the campaign is typical of him as a candidate. And it shows that he's got what it takes to be a strong leader. Paul Martin's the candidate who's actually been a Prime Minister, but Jack's the candidate who brings issues like these up. Time and again, Jack has shown a mastery of the thousands of different issues Canada faces and a real ability to balance all the considerations -- including fiscal -- to come up with sound policies and a balanced budget.

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