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    Quotes about Canada: Manifest Destiny, eh?

    After almost 240 years of failure, the American hankering to acquire Canada, known as Manifest Destiny, seems to still be beating in at least a few southern hearts.

    TAKE QUEBEC. The unanimous Voice of the Continent is Canada must be ours; Quebec must be taken. John Adams (1735-1826), second U.S. president, following the 1776 defeat of theinvasion of Canada by U.S. armies led by Richard Montgomery and Benedict Arnold.

    AN INVITATION. Canada, acceding to this confederation, and joining in the measures of the United States, shall be admitted into, and entitled to all the advantages of this Union:  but no other colony shall be admitted into the same unless such admission be agreed to by nine states. U.S. Articles of Confederation, November 15, 1777.

    SEDUCTION. The people of that country [Canada] are first to be seduced from their allegiance, and converted into traitors, as preparatory to the making them good citizens. John Randolph (1773-1833). U.S. politician and orator. U.S. Congress, December 10, 1811.

    A MATTER OF MARCHING. The annexation of Canada this year as far as the neighborhood of Quebec, will be a mere matter of marching, and will give us experience for the attack of Halifax the next, and the final expulsion of England from the American continent. Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), 3rd U.S. president. Letter August 4, 1812.

    SHIFT THE BORDER. Fifty-four forty, or fight. William Allen (1803-79). U.S. politician. The Ohio Senator’s slogan became the battle cry of expansionists who wanted to extend the U.S. border to latitude 54 degrees 40 minutes north, at the southern tip of Alaska. It was the campaign cry of James K. Polk who was elected president in 1845.

    RAILROAD.  The opening by us first of a North Pacific Railroad seals the destiny of British possessions west of the 91st meridian. Annexation will be but a question of time. U.S. Senate, Report on Pacific railroads, February 19,1869.

    ANNEXATION.  For the admission of the states of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Canada East and Canada West and for the organization of the territories of Selkirk, Saskatchewan and Columbia. U.S. Congress, July 2, 1886. Wording of a Bill proposing the annexation of Canada.

    A FEW BRIBES.  Nobody who has studied the peculiar methods by which elections are won in Canada will deny the fact that five or six million dollars, judiciously expended… would secure the return to Parliament of a majority pledged to the annexation of Canada to the United States. New York World, 1890.

    A RIPE APPLE. Canada is like an apple on a tree just beyond our reach. We may strive to grasp it, but the bough recedes from our hold just in proportion to our effort to catch it. Let it alone and in due time it will fall into our hands. James G. Blaine (1830-93), U.S. politician, secretary of state 1881 and 1889-93. Quoted by W. E. Harris in Canada’s Last Chance (1970).

    PEAS IN A POD. You know, it seems ridiculous. We both speak the same language. We think alike. We behave the same. Don’t you think you would be better off as the 49th state?. Dwight Eisenhower (1890-1969), U.S. general and 34th president of the United States. Said in 1965, to Lionel Chevrier, in Washington, D.C. Quoted by Chevrier in  “St. Lawrence Seaway” (1959).

    COMMERCIAL IMPERATIVE.  Sooner or later, commercial imperatives will bring about free movement of all goods back and forth across our long border; and when that occurs, or even before it does, it will become unmistakably clear that countries with economies so inextricably intertwined must also have free movement of the other vital factors of production— capital, services, labour. The result will inevitably be substantial economic integration, which will require for its full realization a progressively expanding area of common political decision. George Ball (1909-1994), U.S. diplomat. Discipline of Power (1968).

    NO MEANS YES. Well, it doesn’t take a Ph.D. in psychology to realize that Canadians’ mock horror at the thought of becoming part of the United States actually masks a deep desire to do precisely that. They protest too much. Their lips say “no, no” but their eyes say “yes, yes.” Michael Kinsley, editor of Slate, Microsoft Corporation’s on-line magazine. Toronto Star, December 11, 1988.

    KAPUT BORDER.  This business has become a continental game. That border is kaput. J.C. Anderson, U.S. oil man, CEO of Anderson Exploration Ltd., on Canada’s booming sales of oil and natural gas to the United States, which have made Canada the largest single source of U.S. energy imports. New York Times, June 12, 2000.

    One Response to “Quotes about Canada: Manifest Destiny, eh?”

    1. Munroe Scott says:

      By God Earle, that’s a great collection of pertinent quotes. Your script should be mounted vertically on twenty-foot high billboards and set up outside every town hall and legislative building in the country, just so none of our so-called leaders can plead ignorance.

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