Andrew Coyne, rightly, despairs of the Canadian reaction:
This is Just. So. Embarrassing. If there is anything less attractive than the anti-American streak in our national character — a trait made worse, one suspects, for our neighbours’ sunny indifference to our seething — it is our tendency to prostrate ourselves before American celebrities. And they don’t get any more celebritous than Barack Obama. Okay, I get that he’s a likeable fellow. He avoids excessive partisanship, he comes across as thoughtful and decent, he connects with people — yes to all that.
But people, really: camping out at 4:30 in the morning on Parliament Hill for five seconds of waving from behind plexiglas two hundred yards away (and five seconds longer, at that, than scheduled)? Hours and hours of television coverage given over to a few brief clips of the President a) landing, b) walking with the Governor General, c) sitting with the Governor General, d) flashing by in his motorcade, and e) walking, sitting and standing with the Prime Minister?
Have we all taken leave of our senses? The CBC interviewed some lunatic woman who gravely informed us that, with the election of Barack Obama, she now knew that “everything was going to be okay.” A sign in the crowd read “First God, then Obama,” which was positively restrained compared to some of the comments one overheard. And I don’t just mean from the reporters.
This need for heroes, this cult of charisma — and we in the media are the worst offenders, though for more explicable motives — is not merely empty and shallow. It is dangerous. At the very least, it is a distraction. At the worst, it is a kind fascism. It appeals to all that is hollow within us, and — worse — within them. Was that not the least attractive thing about Trudeau: the glamour?…
Via Raphael Alexander, taking on Mickey I. By the way, a whole lot of people are calling the visit “historic“. Why?
Update: “We are such ouinies” (via Terry Glavin, via Andrew Potter). More ouinies.