Western Standard

The Shotgun Blog

« A uniqely Communist Olympiad | Main | Cease-fire? Yes. Cease-agitation? No. »

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Conservatives abandon White Man’s Burden and end funding for cultural imperialism

Wikipedia defines cultural imperialism as “the practice of promoting, distinguishing, separating, or artificially injecting the culture or language of one nation into another.”

Post-colonial theorist, Edward Said, argues that “the connection between imperial politics and culture in North America...is astonishingly direct.” The justification, according to Said, is based on the colonial idea of White Man's Burden.

Sounds pretty ugly, eh? And certainly not very Canadian.

If Canadian culture and cultural products spread naturally across the globe and become a small part of a foreign nation’s cultural mosaic, that’s great. The world needs more Canada, after all.

But “artificially injecting” our culture into another nation like an imperial poison? No way.

Using millions of dirty petro-dollars taken from Alberta to displace the indigenous culture of a struggling developing nation? No way.

That’s not Canada. That’s Amerika.

Yet, this is what Canada’s left wants to do.

The Liberals and Greens are mad as hell because the Conservatives scraped almost $15 million in funding for two programs that promote exporting Canadian cultural products overseas. Let’s call these programs White Man’s Burden. It’s a catchier name than PromArt and Trade Routes.

Green Party leader Elizabeth May said today that she thinks White Man’s Burden has “an important diplomatic and foreign affairs function.” Wow. Said was right. There is an “astonishingly direct” link between culture and imperial politics, at least on the left.

Bless her imperialist heart for wanting to “showcase Canadian culture for the rest of the world,” but May should know that bringing civilization to the savages is risky business these days. Didn’t our Prime Minister just apologise to Canada’s aboriginal community for an earlier version of a White Man’s Burden program called Residential Schools?

My advice is to let cultural ideas and products flow freely in an open market without the interference of government and political agendas. Let the best ideas win...ideas that advance the universal goals of freedom and human dignity.

We can even give this concept a name...like Freedom. Yeah, we'll call it Freedom.

Posted by Matthew Johnston on August 12, 2008 in Current Affairs | Permalink


TrackBack URL for this entry:

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Conservatives abandon White Man’s Burden and end funding for cultural imperialism:


Matthew, although I agree with you, the problem with your idea of freedom, is that it strips those in power of power. People who have power over others don't like giving it up.

Posted by: TM | 2008-08-12 12:22:07 PM

Relax guys. The Liebral/Dipper/Watermelon alliance is just trying to appease their voting base - struggling artists too lazy to get real jobs.

What they don't realize is that no one cares about "Canadian culture". If anything, Canadian culture has been artificially injected. Thank goodness for superior American culture. It keeps me entertained.

Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2008-08-12 1:02:38 PM

It makes more sense to stop importing the "White man's burden".

Montreal riot reveals ethnic divide

"People don't trust the police," Pierre said.

He also said there was a gang problem in Montreal North and said young people are susceptible to gangs because of poverty. Some officers call it the Bronx of Montreal, after area of New York City known for its rough reputation.

About 25 percent of the residents of Montreal North are immigrants. Almost 15 percent are black and 3.5 percent are Latino, according to census data.

On Sunday, men and women of all ages crawled through the smashed windows of a pawn shop, a convenience store and a butcher shop, grabbing anything they could. They could be seen running down the street clutching TVs, cigarette cartons and slabs of meat."

It's a good thing we don't "give a damn about "race replacement" or some other dumb aesthetic preference."

Posted by: DJ | 2008-08-12 1:38:29 PM

Thank goodness for superior American culture.
Posted by: Zebulon Punk | 12-Aug-08 1:02:38 PM

Yeah thank goodness. BWAHAHAHAHAHA See if you can spot the Punk in any of the scenes.


Posted by: The Stig | 2008-08-12 1:50:17 PM

Stig: that's still superior to "Canadian culture" like Red Green.

Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2008-08-12 2:08:22 PM

I just heard the quote of the day on CTV.

Rona Ambrose was commenting on the so-called racist comments of a liberal MP.

She said about Dion's reaction; "His silence is as bad as saying nothing at all"

PM Harper obviously needs a deeper hole to stuff Ms. Ambrose into. I thought we'd seen the last of her, but I guess good help is harder to find than I thought.

Posted by: dp | 2008-08-12 2:15:09 PM

PM Harper obviously needs a deeper hole to stuff Ms. Ambrose into. I thought we'd seen the last of her, but I guess good help is harder to find than I thought.
Posted by: dp | 12-Aug-08 2:15:09 PM

What ever happened to the Diana Blondie (I think that was her name) she was the Conservative immigration critic? She was a Harper stalwart and seemed cabinet material. Is she making coffee for the caucus now?

Posted by: The Stig | 2008-08-12 3:16:58 PM

I'm about as absent minded as Ms Ambrose. I meant to say "sexist comments".

Posted by: dp | 2008-08-12 3:33:37 PM

Montreal riot? What Montreal riot?

Well at least no report, to date, unlike New Orleans after Katrina, of the police looting.


It's a good thing we don't "give a damn about "race replacement" or some other dumb aesthetic preference."

Posted by: DJ | 2008-08-12 4:30:19 PM

Isn't the Edward Said you quote the same fellow (Egypptian) who started the Muslim Brotherhood that segued into the Islamist movement? Isn't that the bunch that promotes Islamist imperialism?Just asking.

Posted by: DML | 2008-08-12 8:23:13 PM

Here's a gem by Thibeault:
"... I noticed the Liberal candidate for Willowdale looking pissed as I strode by a television monitor in the lobby tonight. "Well," said Martha Hall-Finley to the Duffster, "I certainly will not be bringing testosterone to Ottawa." Her inference was crystal – guys fight, they don't. As my seatmate [Liberal MP] Robert Thibault confided to me as we sat waiting for a vote, "The thing I hate about women is that they generalize."


Posted by: Bocanut | 2008-08-12 8:40:33 PM

"She said about Dion's reaction; "His silence is as bad as saying nothing at all""

Now that is funny! hehehe

Posted by: Tom | 2008-08-12 9:00:37 PM

Do you guys actually follow the latest developments in topics you discuss or is it only the reverberating sounds of the echo chamber that make sense to you?
Cultural imperialism is not sending representatives to conferences to explain points of view in a forum in which lots of others do like wise.
Cultural imperialism is imposing your views on others because you think you are right and have a doctrine to back you up.
Residential schools - only good xtian white folks can raise children (sound familiar?)
Now that's cultural imperialism.
Insisting that the xtian faith is the only way to heaven, now that's cultural imperialism.


Posted by: harebell | 2008-08-13 12:04:04 AM

harebell: "Residential schools - only good xtian white folks can raise children (sound familiar?)"


Would it have been "kinder" to leave Native Canadians in their tribal enclaves in the great, big sea that is North America with only their traplines, sweat lodges, and Native dialects?

How do you think Native "leaders" (sic) like Phil Fontaine were able to become lawyers (and anti-white/Christian activists)? 'Not by staying on his reserve in Manitoba where his life of poverty began after his father died when he was five or six years old.

Phil would most certainly never have mastered English, let alone other academic subjects that helped him get into institutions of "higher learning," by staying on his reserve.

By the way you and Fontaine are talking, it's all the White Man's Fault that Phil is now making a six-figure salary and jets around the world to "human rights" conferences with his partner, Kathleen Mahoney, feminist activist par excellence, who, BTW, is on the Native gravy train herself.

There are many Native voices that aren't and haven't been heard: They've been deep-sixed. These are the men and women who know they BENEFITTED from the residential schools. Many years ago, on the CBC--before the days of strict censorship on anything positive being said about residential schools--many Native women who were interviewed said that they were treated much better at the school they attended than at home, where they were often hungry and frequently abused. They said they were grateful for the residential schools.

They're not the only ones, but we're not hearing from anyone who departs from the Phil Fontaine School of Propaganda (all the better to garner more money from the government for "healing").

Crawl back under your rock, harebell. You seem to be most comfortable in the dark.

Posted by: batb | 2008-08-13 7:25:33 AM

The Liberals and the media have done and continue to do a grave disservice to the Native people, portraying them as slaggarts who don't take care of their children. The complete and true facts just don't fit their agendas.

Anything positive would diminish their ability to use the Natives as another of their tools in the dependency file, enriching the Chiefs and starving their people then blaming it on the government.

Posted by: Liz J | 2008-08-13 7:58:09 AM

Well put, Liz.

Posted by: Matthew Johnston | 2008-08-13 11:20:35 AM

Very well put Liz,

The fact is the the injection of "Multi Culturalism" into the natural relationships between all peoples creates more problems than it could ever solve. We end up with people thinking they have "Group Rights" which is an oxymoron in itself. One group will feel that another group has "more" rights and demand the same for their group. And then it leads to racial or religious squabbling between "groups". It also gives our government what it needs to intevene and take control in order to restore order....Control in a Nutshell. The only way "rights" work is when they pertain to all individuals...not groups. But the government doesn't want us to see ourselves as individuals do they? Nope...they want us to develop an anthill mentality where we all work for (dare I say it?) Big Brother.

Posted by: JC | 2008-08-13 12:45:43 PM

You need to rewrite your story and insert the appropriate information at how the Conservative Government has misappropriated funds to send Gwyn Dyer to Cuba, rather than portray it as Gwyn Dyer getting a grant to play in the sun...

Incompetent idiots is too kind a phrase...

Posted by: Lost One | 2008-08-13 1:13:49 PM

The ironies of the latest dust-up about the use of "sexist" language by MPs are too delicious not to savour.

Recall a year or so ago when Peter MacKay told Alexa McDonough (sp?) to "stick to her knitting." On that occasion, Rona Ambrose rushed to the TV cameras to defend poor misunderstood Peter. What he said wasn't sexist at all, and the Liberals were just playing silly buggers over a canned phrase. Now she's in high dudgeon over what Robert Thibeault said about Marjorie LeBreton.

These politicians! My, oh my! How can all you statists -- whether Liberal, Conservative, or No Dads Party -- delude yourselves all your adult lives?

[Memo to self: write book called "The Government Delusion," become big academic / media star, get Chair at Oxford for the Public Understanding of Anarchy...]

Posted by: Grant Brown | 2008-08-13 2:09:05 PM

That was not really the point that was being discussed, but then that really is a true tory tactic, move goalposts and attack a new and different argument.
What ever the outcomes the process was "cultural imperialism" in action. (Similar to processes being put into place in Australia too.)
Attending a conference to put forward one of many views is not. The original point still stands.
Your attempt to point out a bright shiny object didn't deflect me from the original point, though your echoey chums seem to love it.

Posted by: harebell | 2008-08-13 3:01:40 PM

Artificially injecting, culture or language... promoting, distinguishing, seperating... Sounds like a Trudueavian manifesto for the destruction of English institutions in Canada. Poor Avi Lewis... how will he save the world now ?

Posted by: Sean | 2008-08-13 4:34:04 PM

nah nah nah,
This is strickly a definition of "imperialism".
If something like "cultural imperialism" could exist, French Québec would be an ugly and very boring province of Canada by now.

Culture is precisly what keeps the Powers in check and that's why Harper, with his neocon-wannabe immitation of a government, try to regulates it.
He's affraid.
And it shows.

Posted by: Marc | 2008-08-13 4:38:06 PM

If something like "cultural imperialism" could exist, French Québec would be an ugly and very boring province of Canada by now.
Posted by: Marc | 13-Aug-08 4:38:06 PM

Dat for sure. Ostie câlice tabarnak

Posted by: The Stig | 2008-08-13 4:52:00 PM

Aboriginal Adults (2004-2005)

* 3% of the total Canadian adult population - (2001 Census)
* 22% of admissions to provincial/territorial sentenced custody
* 17% of admissions to federal prisons
* 21% of male prisoner population
* 30% of female prisoner population

* In Saskatchewan, Aboriginal adults are incarcerated at 35 times the rate of non-aboriginals, where they make up 77% of the total prisoner population (10% of outside population)
* In the Yukon -- Aboriginal adults make up 74% of the total prisoner population (20% of outside population)
* In Manitoba -- Aboriginal adults make up 70% of the total prisoner population (11% of outside population)
* In Alberta -- Aboriginal adults make up 38% of the total prisoner population (4% of outside population)
* In Ontario -- Aboriginal adults make up 9% of the total prisoner population (1% of outside population)
* In British Columbia -- Aboriginal adults make up 20% of the total prisoner population (10% of outside population)

Aboriginal Women (2004-2005)

* Aboriginal women make up 30% of the female prisoner population
* In Saskatchewan, Aboriginal women account for 87% of all female admissions
* In Manitoba and the Yukon, Aboriginal women account for 83% of all female admissions
* In Alberta, Aboriginal women account for 54% of all female admissions
* In British Columbia, Aboriginal women account for 29% of all female admissions

These high rates of imprisonment remain despite changes made by parliament to the sentencing provisions of the criminal code. These changes to the criminal code were designed to address the issue of overrepresentation of First Nations within the sentenced prison population. s.718.2(e) of the criminal code provides that "all available sanctions other than imprisonment that are reasonable in the circumstances should be considered for all offenders, with particular attention to the circumstances of Aboriginal offenders."

(Otherwise the rates would be higher)

Aboriginal Youth (2001-2002)

* 5% of the total canadian adult population - (1996 Census).
* 25% of youth held on remand
* 22% of total youth prisoner population
* 17% of probation admissions

Female Aboriginal Youth

* 32% of remand prisoner population
* 25% of youth in prison

Male Aboriginal Youth

* 23% of remand prisoner population
* 21% of youth in prison

It's a simple story really.

IQ Will Put You In Your Place
By Charles Murray

From the Sunday Times, UK, May 25 1997.

"The research bears out what parents of children with unequal abilities already know - that try as they might to make Johnny as bright as Sarah, it is difficult, and even impossible, to close the gap between them."

It is the story of Marxist liberalism and the lies of racial egalitarians; try as they might closing the gap between the aboriginal mean IQ and the European mean IQ is probably impossible.

Posted by: DJ | 2008-08-13 5:34:29 PM

"IQ Will Put You In Your Place"

What's the point of all these statistics DJ ?
I mean, IQ is rarely a standard for anything.
If it does, how do you explain George W. Bush ?

Posted by: Marc | 2008-08-13 10:27:24 PM

By the way i'm not trying easy bashing here - I'm just really curious.

Posted by: Marc | 2008-08-13 10:54:39 PM

President Bush has an estimated IQ of 125, based on his known scores on tests like the SATs.

IQ is a reasonably good predictor of many things, as single measures go. Read "The Bell Curve."

Posted by: Grant Brown | 2008-08-13 11:39:43 PM

President Bush has an estimated IQ of 125, based on his known scores on tests like the SATs.

IQ is a reasonably good predictor of many things, as single measures go. Read "The Bell Curve."

Posted by: Grant Brown | 2008-08-13 11:41:34 PM

The Bell curve is not an agreed on text.(To say the least.)
Also for someone on this blog, normally inhabited by anti-intellectual rightists to try and claim the intellectual high ground is weird.
I thought that rightists despised the idea of an intellectual elite, because those poor dumb religionists had every right to their poor naive views. I mean FNC and the boys seem to think that if a majority think that humans ran with the dinosaurs then it was arrogant for professors at universities to try and say otherwise.
Maybe Grant, you are pro intellectual when it supports your racist views and anti-intellectual when it dumps your rightist views in the pooper.
Me I like evidence and reproducibility, so the bell curve is crap as is the idea that T-Rex boarded the ark.

Posted by: Harebell | 2008-08-14 1:11:27 AM


That's a pretty big leap from "controversial" to "crap;" and from "finding differnces" to "racist."

I'm not anti-intellectual. I'm anti-pseudo-intelectual. Yours is such a jumble of misattribution and over-reaction that I'll have to slot you into the pseudo-intellectual camp.

Posted by: Grant Brown | 2008-08-14 2:31:56 AM

OK Grant
big letters small words time.
Bell curve was written by Murray
Murray used IQ to show how some folk were not as smart as others. (Finding differences)
Murray then made a huge leap and tied that to some races. (Controversial.)
This was a a massive leap because this claim was unsupportable, but allowed the promulgation of some stereotypical views. (Racism)
You like the idea of IQ tests and advised reading the Bell Curve.(Indicating support of it's conclusions.)
Straight enough line for you to follow?
Being called a pseudo-intellectual by you is not really an insult is it now?
Nice touch with the name calling, what are you five?

Posted by: Harebell | 2008-08-14 1:18:00 PM

"This was a a massive leap because this claim was unsupportable..."

And yet their critics supported it, this "unsupportable" massive leap. The only questioned that remained was whether the racial gaps in mean IQ were ineluctable. Let's argue they're not. Let's argue that nature trumps nurture in IQ development. Let's asked Harebell to propose a unique means for closing the gap.

We're all ears.

Posted by: DJ | 2008-08-14 2:36:49 PM

Harebell -- calling Dr. Grant Brown a pseudo-intellectual makes you look silly. He got his D.Phil at Oxford University.

Posted by: Matthew Johnston | 2008-08-14 3:03:40 PM

Harebell -- calling Dr. Grant Brown a pseudo-intellectual makes you look silly. He got his D.Phil at Oxford University.
Posted by: Matthew Johnston | 14-Aug-08 3:03:40 PM

MJ - Harebell got his PhD from St. Cunnilingus College.

Posted by: The Stig | 2008-08-14 3:35:07 PM

Stig - what a small world! I did my undergrad there! "Go, Tongues, go!" Great school.

Posted by: ebt | 2008-08-14 3:50:02 PM

1% inspiration-99% perspiration-Edison. Real leadership also involves knowing when and how to delegate and when and how to ask for help. What does a test really measure? I once had a student who was well spoken and who wrote an excellent paper. It was obvious he was intelligent. When I looked up his test scores (intelligence, etc. it looked as if he was at the bottom- a dolt. His response was that he knew what the authorities wanted of him but he could not be bothered to play their games. He decided to play a few of his own. I know, I Know, a stastical example of one.
Scores don't necessarily indicate anything at all.

Posted by: DML | 2008-08-14 11:00:47 PM

When I talk about IQ scores correlating with a range of outcomes, I am talking about studies that often contain tens of thousands of data points spanning sometimes several decades. The results are quite robust, and hardly critiquable on the basis of anecdotes.

I don't know, frankly, whether IQ is significantly correlated with other *genetic* variables. It is certainly correlated with *developmental* and *cultural* variables, like Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and indoctrination into primitivist ideologies. In fact, the main reason it is difficult to determine whether IQ correlates with other genetic variables is that there is so much confounding by developmental and cultural differences.

But certainly nobody should be closed-minded to the possibility that IQ correlates (significantly but mildly) with genetic variables, given what we do know about genetic variability. I think there is some pretty convincing evidence that certain kinds of mental abilities are correlated with X and Y chromosomes -- more in the distribution at the tales than at the means. Canadian psychologist Doreen Kimura has won prestigious awards exploring this area. Check it out.

When I did a little bit of research on genetic variability some 15 years ago, I learned that about 300 characteristics had already been discovered that could be associated with genetic variations within populations, and the list was growing by about one per month at that time. The prevalence of lots of health problems are correlated with specific populations.

The allele that confers a certain kind of colour-blindness, for example, is more common among males than females, and its frequency varies significantly across populations.

I don't "like" IQ scores, in particular. I merely made the observation that they tend to predict certain kinds of outcome reasonably well "as far as single indicators go." Gender is a much better predictor, these days: as my previous opinion piece "The Curious Case of Country C" explained, females score better on almost every important social indicator or well-being.

P.S.: The Bell Curve was co-authored by Charles Murray. The other co-author was a Harvard psychologist who had made a career of studying IQ and its correlates. If you think you can shoot it down from the hip in a blog, that says more about your IQ than it says about the authors' "racism."

Posted by: Grant Brown | 2008-08-14 11:49:43 PM

The comments to this entry are closed.