John Baird versus The World

Tease the day: Did Canada’s foreign minister just get bored with the House of Commons?

by Nick Taylor-Vaisey

AP/Bebeto Matthews

John Baird is, whether he saw it coming or not, the face of Israeli solidarity in Canada. I wonder if, as he delivered his first victory speech upon being elected to Ontario’s legislature in 1995, Baird could ever have guessed that would happen. Would he ever have considered that, seventeen years after he was first elected, he’d be standing in front of the United Nations at all? And there he was, staking out lonely ground—alongside powerful friends from the United States, Israel, and the fearsome south Pacific—in advance of a cause destined to fail, urging a room full of people who disagree to change course. Ultimately, of course, he was unsuccessful. The UN General Assembly voted to recognize the Palestinian Authority as a non-member observer state. But this morning, Baird wasn’t embarrassed on Canada’s front pages. To the contrary, he’s simply cast as a stubborn, principled, and doggedly determined man whose top quote, that the UN’s vote was “utterly regrettable”, carried the day. There’s little mention of Baird’s boss, the prime minister, in any top coverage. Indeed, it’s Baird versus the World. Maybe he got bored in the House of Commons.


What’s above the fold this morning?

The Globe and Mail leads with Ontario’s desire to sell off government-owned shares in General Motors. The National Post fronts the United Nations vote to recognize the Palestinian Authority as a non-member observer state. The Toronto Star goes above the fold with the bus driver who rerouted her vehicle to transport Mayor Rob Ford’s football team. The Ottawa Citizen leads with the latest details in Elections Canada’s investigation of voter suppression during the last federal campaign. iPolitics fronts a loophole in the federal government’s integrity policy related to procurement. National Newswatch showcases the Citizen‘s story about the Elections Canada investigation into voter suppression.


Stories that will be (mostly) missed

1. Downsview Park. There was plenty of talk about new management at the Old Port of Montreal yesterday, but the future of Toronto’s former air base is also up in the air. 2. Border dispute. Canada and Denmark have reached a tentative agreement about disputed land in the Arctic, but several small disputes with the U.S. remain unresolved.
3. Government mould. The Privy Council Office is battling issues with mould that’s proving to endanger both the legibility of documents and the health of anyone nearby. 4. Eco-terrorist surrenders. A Canadian woman who’s wanted in connection with several terrorist acts in the United States turned herself over to authorities in Washington state.




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John Baird versus The World

  1. “And there he was, staking out lonely ground …. ”

    william douglas ~ free speech is not to be regulated like diseased cattle and impure butter. The audience … that hissed yesterday may applaud today, even for the same performance.

    • Ya, but it’s a slow,sarcastic clap.

  2. If John Baird wants to stand on his own, and believe me I think he mostly is, then he should leave office and go do that somewhere else. He is not speaking for the majority of Canadians.

    • I and many other Canadians completely stand with Baird and with Israel. You cannot determine right and wrong by popularity contests. It is Israel’s land, always will be Israel’s land, and those that know what is truth in this world will always stand by Israel and it’s absolute right to determine what happens inside it’s borders.

      I am grateful and saddened at the same time. Grateful that we are among the few countries to recognize the truth; saddened to see that there are so few remaining in the world today that recognize the truth.

      • It’s not even remotely a question of disputed territory. Even Israel doesn’t claim that “it’s their land.” I love the conviction of the clueless. “I haven’t the first clue what I’m talking about, but I know who’s right.”

        • It is their land and the only reason they don’t openly say it is because of so many that will scream about it. Israel has every right to entirely settle it’s country from one end to the other.

          But others, guised in falsehoods, threaten with violence to prevent it, and Israel maintains a level-headed approach in regards to this. Make no mistake, it is Israel’s land and it will always remain so, despite what corrupt institutions such as the UN try to claim. They do not have the universal authority of what is right or wrong, no matter how much their arrogance allows them to pretend to believe that they do.

          • Yeah, you’ll have to excuse me Ryan, I didn’t realize when I first responded to you that you have made a deliberate choice to substitute faith for reason. I won’t try to save you if you’ll return the favour. Enjoy your days til the end of days.

          • Both faith and reason are exactly the same here. It’s Israel’s land, and it will remain so. Their clearly evident convergence should be more alarming to you. It should no longer be possible to deny the truth that is before you, unless you are willingly choosing to be blind to it.

          • Exactly, you can’t change the facts. You are a moron and will remain so.

          • It is their land and the only reason they don’t openly say it is because of so many that will scream about it.

            So, every Israeli leader and every Israeli government has been lying to EVERYONE IN THE WORLD for DECADES??? I don’t buy it.

            You’re free to believe that the occupied territories are Israeli land but I doubt that’ll have much of an impact on anything, given that not even Benjamin Netanyahu agrees with your stance.

      • Certainly there are someCanadians who feel this way. Not very many, but most of them live in certain ridings the CPC would like to win from the Liberals.

      • Maybe you should move over there and feel what it’s like to lose your family due to map boundaries.

      • And Ryan I suppose that you have the historical evidence that land in question is all of Israel’s land, which enables you to confirm that your facts are the absolute facts. You sir are an idiot.

      • I am a Canadian and I do not stand with Baird. Stop bullying Palestine.

  3. Baird is not speaking for all Canadians.
    Many see his statement to the UN as Israeli/US
    Puppeteering. Harper’s bullying attempts
    to stop Palestinian UN bid failed. Baird is now left to do
    damage control. That’s why there’s no mention of
    Harper. He’a busy cleaning the egg off
    his face. I hear it’s good for your complexion though.

  4. John Baird, not an actual participant, but the loudest and proudest coat-holder in the schoolyard. It is an absurdity to suggest that the PA can be recognized as a nation only with the consent of Israel.

    I have always supported Israel, they have the right to exist and the right to defend themselves. But they do not have the right to define the status of another nation and it is the height of presumption to claim such a right. My God, are we Canadians being ruled by complete morons? We don’t have enough to deal with in our own backyard but have to inject ourselves into a fight that doesn’t concern us – not to make peace – but to cheer on one side and spit on the other. Worse than a mere bully, we have become a bully cheering section. Urging the participants to draw more blood, kill more children, ramp up the violence in a continuing spiral, and never once putting our own skin in the game.

    What a shameful farce.

    • What a shameful farce that the Palestinian people aren’t willing to choose tolerance over hatred. The Palestinian people will get all the leverage they need for securing a state of their own, once they accept the existence of a Jewish state called Israel, because once the Palestinian people have fully accepted such recognized Jewish state to exist, the rest of the world will put an enormous amount of pressure onto the Israelis to start negotiating in earnest about the boundaries, settlements and what have you.

      The Palestinian people keep playing the same top card, as if it’s their best, thinking that withholding the acceptance of a Jewish state is the best they can play. But really what they are doing is handing the Israelis the best card to be played. Much better to let Israel be, accept it and then find support from people all over the world when Israel tries to claim more than its fair share.

      • There is a debate at the moment about what good this vote will actually do to the Palestinians, but my question to you is this: exactly what harm does it do to Israel? None whatever as far as I can see. No blood, not even light bruising. It is mostly offensive to hysterical authoritarians offended as usual by those who chose any path but obedience.

    • ” My God, are we Canadians being ruled by complete morons?”

      Where have you been?

      • Hahaha

    • We’d be a lot better off if the Conservatives were merely morons.

  5. USA, Canada, Israel, Czech Republic, Panama,Palau, Marshall Islands,
    Nauru, and Micronesia !!
    We are the World … We are the children ….

    • Popularity contests do not determine who is right or wrong.

      • It wasn’t a “popularity contest”.

        • Every vote in the world is a “popularity contest”, by the fact that we’re human, this is simply inherent. Is doesn’t mean all votes are right, or all votes are wrong, it’s just the truth.

          We cannot “decide” what is right or wrong by voting on it. We only voice our opinion. 9 students could gang up on 1 student, and all 9′s claim that the 1 student did something wouldn’t change the fact that the 1 student may not have done anything at all.

          The point being, no matter what reason the countries voted against Israel doesn’t change the fact that they ultimately don’t have any jurisdiction in Israel. Israel ultimately has just been going along with the UN in hopes of peace but with acts like these that show the world to be against Israel, Israel will have no choice but to take matters into it’s own hands since clearly the rest of the world’s hands will be against her.

          This is simply another step towards war, not peace.

          • Your statements that “popularity contests do not determine who is right or wrong”, yet “every vote in the world is a popularity contest”, are logically inconsistent. Votes, by your own definition of them as “popularity contests”, very often, in fact, determine right or wrong including, for example, majority decisions from the bench in judicial rulings on matters of “right and wrong”.

            So, if every vote is a popularity contest, your first assertion is invalid.

          • This was not a vote against Israel. It was a vote for Palestine.

      • Ya mean I don’t have to tolerate an incompetent government
        because they won a “popularity” contest ? I like your “thinking”,
        young man….

      • Actually, when it comes to defining borders and other things which only exist in people’s heads? They kinda do.

  6. When this is done we’re going to need a mighty big apology tour.

  7. I would say that any cause not driven by principle will ultimately fail. Witness the UN, now weaker with principles in tatters. Witness the Palestinians searching for principles where none can ever be found: hatred does not allow for principles to exist.

    Take the above written article as an example: no principals involved whatsoever. Nothing provided for further digging into. Safe, predictable and boring and as such will not propel the writer onto stages set for the world to hear.

    Bravo John Baird! I admire your courage. One can never be ashamed by reminding the world, as many lone-standers have demonstrated before you, that reasonable conduct will always win out in the struggle for securing meaningful change in the world.

    • Hatred seeks justification for it’s actions. Truth merely is.

      Just as Israel’s enemies seek justification from one another in the form of legalese amongst a corrupt totalitarian institution, it of itself merely continues the theatrical dance in front of the truth-knowing audience.

      There is no dance, no words, no actions, no anything that can justify Israel’s enemies. But that will not stop her enemies from spending energy trying.

      The truth remains, as this: truth is anchored in the ground. Those that hang to it, know it, and fear nothing. Not condemnation, nor ridicule, nor mockery, nor death. Jesus, our King, knew of all these things and worse, yet even so, he walked that path knowing full well our salvation depends on Him. Those that do not anchor themselves in truth are left to the winds of the world, where they may flail and cry, attempting to drown out the truth with all manner of self-imposed distractions and blindness, in the false “hope” that they may unanchor those who hold to the truth.

      My only hope for now, is that anyone reads my comments with humility in their heart. Accept that I write what I write, not for my own benefit, but for the potential benefit that even 1 of 100 may read and be emboldened to seek this truth; not my truth, but thetruth. I certainly do expect ridicule, and I do not judge you if you do (not that I have the power to). So feel free to ridicule, if you feel you must.

      My advice is, allow for the potential of being wrong, and then re-read what I’ve written and if you see it in a different light whatsoever, seek out the truth, that Jesus is our Lord and Savior and only through Him may we enter heaven. God bless you all.

      • There is nothing more gag-inducing than the false humility of the self-righteous. Go celebrate your enlightenment in the privacy of your own home and remember what Jesus said about self-aggrandizement; “But you, when you pray, go into your inner room, close your door and pray to your Father who is in secret, and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you.”

        • This isn’t a prayer, it’s a statement. I am not self-aggrandizing, I am only speaking the truth, which is not my own. It doesn’t benefit me personally.

          I used to be self-righteous, when I was a liberal atheist who thought I knew the world. It was only when I had a moment of humility and truthfully asked if I could be wrong and as it’s said, seek and ye shall find. The things I speak aren’t for my benefit, but for others, if they choose to find value in them. If they choose, however, to be ignorant of it (which is expected, as it’s not easy to find humility), then that is all of our loss.

          Attempting to attack or judge me does nothing for you, though you may not know it yet.

          • Dude, you’re not listening to your God. You’re preaching from sinful pride. Just stop.

      • And people wonder why religious types all too often get labelled as crazies.

        • GFMD offers up a stale one-liner and thereby tries to convince us that a well-thought out post by Ryan is merely a sign of craziness? The world would be so lucky as to have more people like Ryan – being capable of going well beyond the one-liner approach.

          • I feel I gave the post about the number of characters it deserved. In your case, probably too many.

      • Thank you for your reply. Most interesting write-up.

        I only wish to comment in regards to your last paragraph.

        Personally I do not believe that Jesus is our Lord and Savior in believing that Jesus carries all of our sins. I do not read the Christian religion in that way. I believe that the Jesus aspect (the trials and tribulations, the inevitable connectedness to the beyond, and the search for truth to be innate for being) is to be found along the road towards discovery of the Jesus aspect existing within ourselves.

        Perhaps you meant it in the same way, and if so, my response here will be for naught.

        • Great question and yes there are definitely similarities. When Jesus says He is the way, the truth, he could definitely be interpreted as speaking that He is the actual path to walk. He spoke of picking up the cross and walking his path. When He says to follow Him, he may not mean to follow Him precisely, but rather, to walk on the exact same path that He showed us. By our heart and actions, we will inherently walk His path.

          His path is the light for us, the footprints in the sand that guide us. We needed Him to walk it to know it, and that was His gift to us.

          Thank you for your comment as I think I may have realized more there than I had before I wrote my response, and I hope that I have provided you any insight to your question.

          • I understand where you are placing the similarities. Perhaps the differences and similarities between his path and our own path are not that clearly laid out (in common terms as well as in religious terms).

            However, herein lurks the danger: by thinking that it is his path we should follow, we may be drawn into a much too literal understanding of what such path should be. And in that case, when taking the path of Jesus too literally, the Jesus aspect will become a hinder, not a help. In that case we will merely find a Jesus of old standing outside of ourselves and not a Jesus existing within ourselves – to be explored.

            I would rather say that we, as human beings, are on the path of following ourselves home.

            Home is where the heart is, of course, but more than that. The heart, our emotions, are the censors with which to reach towards. The joy, the delight, the happiness will be encountered when the reach is towards real unity and finding unity(truth?) thereby going forward, whereas our emotions of anger, frustration and sadness are as result of not being able to find a reach toward unity and therefore not being able to find unity, and therefore not being able to go forward.

            Reason itself cannot reach toward and reason itself can therefore not propel us forward; reason is as guide to our emotions. And so in tandem – emotions being guided by reason – will truth be able to reveal itself.

            The problem with truth is, of course, that the truth is always deeply hidden within. Within us and within all else. And so the path we walk is about removing layers ongoing so that we can catch a glimpse of the truth, never to be held onto for any duration of time. By being able to reach toward we go forward. By not being able to reach toward we will be standing still or, worse, will be going backwards.

            Something of this nature is going on within the middle east.

        • Uh-oh, dissension among the true believers. Stand by for a holy war.

          • On the contrary :)

      • Through him and and now you eh Ryan?

  8. Disgusted over here

  9. That the Harper Govt would take this stand at the UN is not surprising though still embarrassing. What is rather stunning is the move to recall our diplomats. That right there shows how incredibly amateurish this government STILL is when it comes to foreign relations.

    That said, we get the government we deserve. If Canadians took their civic duties more seriously, we wouldn’t have to suffer such humiliation on the world stage.

  10. Baird is related to Harper who’s related to Ford ….they’re all ignorant buffoons

  11. I don’t think that the vote will ultimately make a big difference to the “peace” process, but it’s embarrassing being on the wrong side of history.

  12. John Baird and the Harper cons are turning Canada into the US’ little poodle. How I miss the days of Chretien when we had the balls to tell US to f-off with their war on Iraq and all. Now we have childish and diplomatically biased and inefficient leaders. Remember what we did to Iran a month odd ago? We’re like 14 year old girls holding grudges. We are not the Canada we used to be in terms of foreign policy, anymore.

  13. Having worked for DFAIT I can say John Baird is beyond an embarrassment. He needs to quit embarrassing the Canadian government and it’s citizens.

  14. How can we get rid of John Baird ?

  15. .

    There is much to say, however I will keep it simple and to the point!

    John Baird, is a propaganda spewing Zionist, puppet.

    His lies bring nothing but shame to those of us who pay attention to the details.

    He,is not fit to run my bath water let alone promote a disturbing foreign
    policy that hurts far to many people, while enabling the spoiled rotten
    child of a country ISRAEL, to repeatedly commit crimes.

  16. Hey Ryan, you long winded, propaganda spewing, fairy tail believing,parasitic twin of John Baird.Your opinion is not nearly as fascinating as you seem to think it is! LOL STOP TRYING SO HARD TO BE CLEVER IT IS A SIGN OF INSECURITY !

  17. Dear Palestine,

    On behalf of the clear majority of my fellow Canadians, I congratulate you on your new non-member observer status in the UN, and would like to reiterate that this is one of many examples in which our government does not represent the views of Canadians whatsoever. Just for the record, the opposition was completely supportive and welcomes your new status. I hope we can both wait until 2015, when we elect these idiotic puppets out office.

  18. Poor Ryan seems to forget that it was the “corrupt” United Nations which created Israel in the first place.

    • Nonono.. you fail to understand.. “corruption” is when an organization does something he disagrees with. When it does something he likes, it’s “righteous”

  19. It’s sad when our government makes decisions about foreign policy based on economic gain and trade relations rather than supporting a legal, peaceful approach to solving a problem.

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