Yes, Canada is a brand, and few people get it quite as cynically as #RealChange and his motley Synod of snot-nosed go-getters. And as with most branding efforts the goal is to have the consumer look at the shiny sticker and miss the obvious signs that the product you’re getting is actually a sockful of shit. Like wheat, which caker business is busy squandering Canada’s claimed reputation for quality by producing inferior shit. Don’t ask about Canada among lentil sellers abroad or you’ll hear tales of cheating and shit quality. But hey, it’s Brand Canada!
Brand Canada’s effects produce revision inside Canada, and that’s where we’re going today. Cakers love to think that Canada rolls up to the global trade party with the equivalent of an inoffensive potato salad. Harmless, right? Tee-hee, aren’t these Canadians just so silly and sorry! Never mind that Canada is actually the #2 supplier of arms to the Middle East. Profiting off of the misery of others is a Canadian speciality; after slaughtering and cruelly debasing the Indigenous Canada’s off to go ruin the lives of some more brown people! After all, if Canada doesn’t sell arms to barbarians someone else will! Or so says Stephane Dion, the Minister for Foreign Affairs. And why does Canada excuse itself for disproportionately contributing to misery and woe? Why, because that’s not in Canada’s brand!
The Canada Brand is of course obnoxious as shit, because it kind of has to be in order to drive out the truth about Canadian exports and business practices – namely, that they’re dirty, shitty for labor, and consequently kind of suck. But because Canadians can’t acknowledge the harm they cause and thus encourage some kind of filthy “improvement” or “humanity” in their ersatz-society, they pull out Brand Canada to make themselves feel better. What’s this about exporting a nad-radding medical scanner? Nah, man! Check out this beer! It says Canada on it so it must be good!
This is the kind of bait-and-switch that comes from a country that runs itself as a shitty, shitty corporation. Here’s Canada telling you that hockey is evidence that Canada has the most “heart” of any nation. I remind you that this is a country that uses poor peoples’ homes and countries as dumping grounds, a country that fairly uniquely opted against calling for a ban on the export of toxic waste. Speaking of dumping, did you know that four caker businesses actually seriously fucking invested in cluster bombs? The country whose capital shares a name with the global ban on anti-personnel mines is investing in other foul machinations of war.
But shit like this doesn’t look good in domestic markets! Canadians need to feel unduly special lest they actually look around and start demanding that Canada do things properly. I know – throw them a hockeymans commercial! That’ll baffle the semi-literate fucks.
The disparity between what Canadian believe about their country and what Canada actually does on a regular basis abroad is, I think, the result of Canadians getting pounded with caker-jingoism from the word go. Canadians are outwardly told what they should think about themselves, attitudes and ideas which are then confirmed or set aside as needed by way of branding Canada. We’ve talked about consumptive Canadiana a lot – this is consumptive Canadiana creating internally a national brand for which there is no evidence externally. Or for that matter internally – in a country that still can’t bring itself to see Indigenous voices as worth listening to here’s Tim Hortons telling you that Canadians are “brought together” by hockey:
But Canada can’t be arsed to act like a good neighbor, so it instead tells a pliant population that it’s totally cool you guys and implies that the rest of the world totally loves Canada because Canada acts like it does in caker commercials. A false image produced domestically prevents Canadians from meaningfully reacting to scenarios externally where Canadians are acting like their usual toady selves.