Mitchel Raphael on the Obama cookie and Trudeau’s thoughts on pot

One Ottawa bakery is celebrating the President’s reelection; and Liberal party hopefuls talk legalization


Mitchel Raphael

The issue that has Justin ‘evolving’

Liberal MP Joyce Murray was giving the thumbs up as the U.S. election unfolded, with Washington and Colorado approving propositions to legalize the recreational use of marijuana. Murray, a former B.C. cabinet minister likely to enter the Liberal leadership race, says that while the party’s official position on pot is legalization, many in her caucus are not supportive. (Young Liberals successfully pushed for approval at recent conventions.) Liberal leadership front-runner Justin Trudeau had been against legalization, but now says, “I’ve certainly evolved from conversations with supporters and Liberals. I am fully a supporter of decriminalization. I think the time has come for that. I am actually very open to legalization and specifically tax and regulation the way they are calling it in the States. It’s something I am looking forward to having a lot of serious discussion about.” Still, Trudeau says smoking marijuana is part of a larger problem: “As a society we are trying to convince people to live healthier lives. Not smoke so much. Not drink so much. I am worried about the message we are sending in that sense.”

Obama and the three cookies

A huge “phew” was heard in Ottawa’s ByWard Market after Barack Obama was re-elected President. Obama made his first international visit to Ottawa in February 2009. He famously stopped in at the historic market, where he purchased three maple-leaf-shaped shortbread cookies from bakery Le Moulin de Provence. Since then, the demand for the cookies has been incredible. Shop owner Claude Bonnet says before the visit he maybe sold 800 a month. At the post-Obama peak, he was turning out 20,000. It is now steady at 5,000 a month. The “Obama cookies,” as they are now called, are made from one custom-made copper cookie cutter and each one is hand-painted with red icing. Several government agencies buy the cookies in bulk to take to the U.S. to promote Canadian tourism. The cookies can also be purchased with a metal container, which includes a Barack Obama coaster and comes in a box that says “Ottawa.”

Back in 2009, that Obama visit was a blessing for the shop. A local bus strike had hurt business dramatically. Afterwards, Bonnet had to hire more staff to meet demand. Bonnet never thought he would sell this many cookies in his life. But even if Mitt Romney had won, he claims he still would have kept making the Obama cookies and maintaining his photo shrine to the U.S. President. Says Bonnet: “He made history by being the first black President. This situation is special. He is something unique. It’s the first time we saw a U.S. President on the street here.” The cookies sell for $2.45 each—the same price Obama paid for them in 2009.


Mitchel Raphael on the Obama cookie and Trudeau’s thoughts on pot

  1. Sorry, but not good enough.

    “I am worried about the message we are sending in that sense.”

    Really? And so because he’s afraid that it will sound like he is encouraging “something” ..he is willing to ENCARCERATE citizens of this country who (in his words) are guilty of indulging in something like alcohol?! Put people in jail because you are afraid to say that the least harmful drug on the planet shouldn’t be illegal?

    Complete and utter spineless drivel. Cannabis is illegal for one reason only: Industry lobbyists who know that it will decimate their monopolistic profits in several areas.

    Among them are: the alcohol lobby, the pulp and paper lobby, the cotton lobby, Big Pharma…these are only a few them. The list of people who’s fat bank accounts are threatened by this harmless plant is longer than my arm.

    And you want us to believe that you’re worried about people drinking (smoking) too much of something?

    Try again, Justin. You are losing credibility fast with statements like that. Until you can speak the WHOLE truth about this issue, I won’t be listening. By repeating the lies and half-truths of industry shills you are accomplishing nothing and showing zero resolve.

    • As compared to who?

      • As compared to an honest human being. I don’t belong to a political party if that’s what you’re fishing for.

        Still waiting for an actual rebuttal instead of the typical deflections and passing blame at others.

        • No, I meant who else is any better on this issue? Harper, Mulcair, Bob Rae? Justin is the most advanced one so far, unfortunately.

          Of course pot should be legal. In fact I don’t think any drug should be banned….that’s insane.

          • Again, if you are reading my comments as though I am saying another party is doing ti better, I’m not.

            I am criticizing the fact that he is not commiting fully on it because it is “dangerous”. It is NOT dangerous. Far less dangerous than alcohol as a recreational drug. Far less dangerous than almost ALL painkillers as a medicine. It’s safer than caffeine for god’s sake.

            It’s the “We have to be careful about it” attitude that’s the problem. THAT is the perpetuated lie that industry shills LOVE. I am glad he is ‘thinking about it”. But that time has gone and past. The facts are the facts, thinking about them any longer is justice denied. It’s as bad as being complicit at this point.

          • In case you haven’t noticed….I’m agreeing with you.

            However I don’t know of any possible leader more advanced on this question.

            I’m assuming Justin is trying to add ‘stodgy’ to his image….but I don’t know that people want ‘stodgy’ anymore.

            Certainly his remarks about students talking were just silly.

          • Are politicians embarrassed to admit they went drinking at Octoberfest? Would he refuse to do a photo op at the opening of a new brewery because of the dangers of alcohol? No? Then we have stop with the double standard on cannabis. The stigma is the problem.

            If he steps up to the plate and goes all in, he will have my ear. Because as long as there’s the qualifier to the argument, it is a weak argument. That’s all I’m saying.

    • That’s “INCARCERATE.”

      • That’s PATHETIC. Good rebuttal.

        Got anything else, Einstein?

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