Also from the magazine: Harper, Obama; Obama, Harper

A team effort — Geddes, Wells, Kohler, Ch. Savage — exploring the likely relationship between the Obama White House and the Harper, er, Dingy Brown 19th-Century Office Building.

Let me warn, gently and I’m sure in a gesture of utter futility, against easy stereotyping of either side of this relationship. About 7 years ago — shortly after Bush was sworn in, but before 9/11 — I reported a long article along similar lines on Chrétien-Bush relations for Saturday Night. What struck me was how deadly serious Canadian officials are about getting off on the right foot with a new White House administration, regardless of party stripe; and how eager the Americans were to do right by Canada. Not as a transcendant foreign-policy objective before which other goals must be sacrificed, but as a strong druther deserving serious work on the Washington side. It’s too early to know for sure what the Obama side will do with regard to Canada, but already the impression we got is that the new U.S. administration is top-of-mind for just about everyone in the Harper government.

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