From the "I'm no expert" file
What I know about the softwood lumber dispute would fit on the back of a cocktail napkin. Buy me a drink and I'll show you what I mean. But having said that, I have an idea about what's going on that I'd like to run past you, Gentle Reader, in the hope that you might pat me patiently on the head and explain to me in short, simple words why I'm completely out to lunch. Deal?
Okay, here goes. If Canada is on the side of the angels in this little dispute, if we're kicking Yankee tail in court and in dispute-resolution panels and anywhere else this thing is being fought, then why is this compromise a good deal for Canada?
I wonder if it's a good deal because we know we're subsidizing our forestry industry with low stumpage fees, we know we're winning the NAFTA arguments on legal loopholes, and we know the Americans know it too? I wonder if we know the loophole is going to get closed one way or another, and we figure we might as well do it on the best terms we can? I wonder if the federal and affected provincial governments are in a bit of a spot from a communications standpoint because every politician of every stripe over the years has told Canadians we're trading fairly when we're actually pulling a bit of a fast one, and because the current crop of politicians now have to convince the electorate that this is a better deal than we really have any business demanding without saying any such thing out loud since that admission would bury the deal south of the border?
And if that's the case, I wonder if Canadians will realize it and be pissed off about having the wool pulled over their eyes for so long, or if we won't pick up on the signals and will instead be pissed off at our various governments - with the Conservatives in Ottawa being first in line - for caving to the bullying Yanks?
I'm just floating what is probably a very unoriginal and misinformed hypothesis, and hoping someone with a better grip on the topic than me can let me know if I'm close or if I'm in left field.