Bing Blog

U.S. Acquires Canada, Pt. 4

Canadian Beaver

I know that in my prior posting, I promised to get to the How To on this matter. In the process of thinking through this crucial terminal issue, however, we come face-to-face with the fact that this is by no means the first investigation of this particular merger/acquisition. In fact, the question has been around for as long as this corporation has been in existence. Some backgrounding, then, is in order, lest we succumb to past failures or neglect the lessons of history.

When the new United States Corporation was formed in the late 18th Century, it turns out, there were significant efforts to include the entity to the north in the new enterprise. These efforts foundered because the Canadian organization was simply too protean, violent and amorphous, and our corporation too exhausted from its leveraged buyout from Great Britain. This did not stop the new United States from including Canada in its Articles of Confederation of 1777. Subsequent attempts at joint venture or straight acquisition continued through the unpleasantness of 1812, but were abandoned, as such projects are when other quotidian matters (like War) intrude. Projects of this scale need champions, individuals with the attention span, passion and political legerdemain to get them done. There was no such individual at hand in either company.

I want to thank a reader for acquainting me with the existence of the Annexation Bill of 1866, which was introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives during that year but never made it to the Senate. It was quite a well thought-out document, by no means the product of some crackpot, and I commend you to the website provided in the link. The kernel of the notion is not altogether dissimilar to the concepts discussed in this venue, to wit:

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the President of the United States is hereby authorized and directed, whenever notice shall be deposited in the Department of State that the governments of Great Britain and the provinces of New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland, Canada, British Columbia, and Vancouver's Island have accepted the proposition hereinafter made by the United States, to publish by proclamation that, from the date thereof, the States of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Canada East, and Canada West, and the Territories of Selkirk, Saskatchewan, and Columbia, with limits and rights as by the act defined, are constituted and admitted as States and Territories of the United States of America.

Again, events intruded, most particularly a number of extremely violent developments in the Canadian space that made the acquisition target more problematic for a corporate entity then recovering from its own Civil War. Nationalist incorporation efforts then developed in the north that produced another barrier to progress.

The idea has never quite died down, however. In 1971, a proposal was made for the United States to offer every Canadian citizen $1,000,000 and an employee ID to U.S. Inc. The suggestion was viewed as less than serious, perhaps, which may be why it never received the extensive investigation it might have deserved. We will look at something similar in our final posting on this subject. It would represent a peaceful means of resolving the question, certainly less expensive than other, more violent ways that corporate states have accomplished such strategic expansions in the past.

These days, according to Wikipedia, some 20% of Canadians and 40% of the residents of the United States support the annexation of Canada to the United States. Not a majority, or even a plurality, but a surprising base of support for a project that might, at first, be considered the realm of humorists and business bloggers. An interesting and comprehensive website "dedicated to the exploration of the potentialities for a democratic annexation of Canada to the United States of America" may be found at http://www.annexation.ca/.  I have just joined as a registered member of their Forum. And here I thought I was kidding.

Next: How to get it done -- the options.

14 Comments Add Comment

$1 million in 1971 is inflation adjusted to over $5.4 million today. If each citizen is going to receive that type of money; maybe instead we should sell ourselves to Canada or the EU.

Pledge of allegiance:

I plegde allegiance to the Flag and the North American Hemisphere----?

How would we fill in the blanks for the appropriate continuation of the proposed pledge?

You say: "Again, events intruded, most particularly a number of extremely violent developments in the Canadian space that made the acquisition target more problematic for a corporate entity then recovering from its own Civil War."

Extremely violent developments in the Canadian space? Weren't those developments in the US space instead? A civil war? All Canada did was conference itself together into a federation. The idea was to diminish a temptation for an army having just subjugated the south to subjugate the north too.

"Extremely violent developments in the Canadian space?" The country's symbol is a *beaver* which means Canadians just beaver away at their own dam business.

Ed, aside from the Fenian Raids, which were generated in the United States, there were other examples. Check out http://books.google.com/books?id=gXov4X_WUcgC&pg=PA243&lpg=PA243&dq=viol....

It may also be possible that you're taking me too seriously.

I will put a small suggestion in here, where few will notice it. Is it possible that the fact that such a potential acquisition may be seriously discussed cast a dim light on all such discussions? Aren't most strategic plans of this nature equally stupid? Could that be the reason I am spending so much time on this dumb idea?

At the same time... it would be nice to own Canada. They have cowboys. And gas prices would most definitely go down.

Your blog reminds me of that one board game Axis and Allies. Whoever gets the highest dice roll wins Canada.

Yo Bing,

I think you'll enjoy this column, comparing the election to interviewing executives, by Bob Lewis.

http://www.issurvivor.com/ArticlesDetail.asp?ID=685

Stanley, You're probably right that questioning "extremely violent developments" and trying to pun with "dam" can seem too serious. The serious thing is that borders are not all that admirable anyway. And if the U.S. and Canada absolutely must have one could we not at least pivot the thing 90 degrees at the middle so Canadians could have some of the warmer climate?

I would say at the rate the US owes money you might have to sell yourselves to us to avert outright bankruptcy.

I love how comparissons between the US and Canada elicit a consistent reaction from both sides. Inevitably, the Canadians become passive-defensive (a trait pattented by Canada Corp) with a bad case of Little Man Syndrome while the Americans become, as Bing puts it, "quite big, fat and at times obnoxious".

We have sharpened sticks and we’re not afraid to use them.

So back off.

http://tradingcrude.blogspot.com/

Thanks, TL. I appreciate your rare and discerning opinion. Wish I could be in Calgary right now, with the rest of the cowboys.

And I'd just like to ask: Did you guys all KNOW there was a bill in Congress for the annexation of Canada in 1866? I mean... that blew my mind!

Some say that the current push for 'deeper integration' (http://www.cfr.org/content/publications/attachments/NorthAmerica_TF_fina...) and the development of U.S. Northern Command (http://www.northcom.mil/ ) are getting the acquisition done quickly, effectively and bloodlessly.

It's been a long time in the planning. For an 1891 version of a similar topic, see 'Can We Coerce Canada':
http://cdl.library.cornell.edu/cgi-bin/moa/moa-cgi?notisid=ABQ7578-0152-11

And for the U.S.'s official military plan of attack on Canada (in effect until the late 1930s: http://www.glasnost.de/hist/usa/1935invasion.html

That there was a bill in Congress for the annexation of Canada in 1866, and that the USA in 1866 was still highly militarized following the end of the civil war in 1865, are two major reasons why the remaining British colonies protectively joined themselves into the nation of Canada by 1867.

I was taught that long ago in high school.

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