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Newfoundland Premier Danny Williams (no stranger to Metafilter) has travelled to an unspecified location in the United States to have heart surgery.
February 7, 2010 6:29 AM   Subscribe

Newfoundland Premier Danny Williams (no stranger to Metafilter) has travelled to an unspecified location in the United States to have heart surgery.

Canadians travelling to the United States to bypass wait times and to visit top-notch surgical facilities isn't something new, however the leader of a province doing so is. Some are calling for honesty when it comes to the state of the health care system. Others, like interim Premier Kathy Dunderale, are asking that people to butt out of his private life. Others are saying this is another example of a two-tier system masquerading as something else.

The controversy isn't limited to Canadian borders; skeptics of a Canadian-style, public health care argue this raises questions about single-payer options.
posted by Hiker (59 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

 
There's nothing wrong with a two-tier system where the lower tier gets affordable, decent healthcare. The U.S. has a many-tier system where the lowest tier gets nothing.
posted by Slothrup at 6:32 AM on February 7, 2010 [72 favorites]


His own dogfood, not eaten?
posted by orthogonality at 6:39 AM on February 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


He'd probably face more controversy within Newfoundland by going to Toronto.
posted by Chuckles McLaughy du Haha, the depressed clown at 6:39 AM on February 7, 2010 [3 favorites]


I don't think that anyone has ever doubted that America has the best health care in the world for the wealthy.

I'm not a fan of the single-payer model, but the Canadian system is attempting to give affordable, decent, if not world-class, care to the middle and lower classes. This is what the American system fails at.
posted by spaltavian at 6:41 AM on February 7, 2010 [8 favorites]


I understand consuming locally when one is able, but is there a surfeit of cardio-thoracic surgeons in Newfoundland?
posted by spacely_sprocket at 6:43 AM on February 7, 2010


I wish that here in America we had a single-payer option that we could raise questions about.
posted by twoleftfeet at 6:54 AM on February 7, 2010 [2 favorites]


Let's hope that the poor of America learn of this and rise up in self-righteous outrage so they can continue to keep themselves uninsured for years to come.
posted by mecran01 at 7:00 AM on February 7, 2010 [21 favorites]


Beck, Hannity, et.al. are gonna ride this one til the cows come home.
posted by Thorzdad at 7:03 AM on February 7, 2010 [2 favorites]


I don't understand the controversy. There are well known clinics & famous doctors/surgeons the world over that people travel to for various treatments. People should be able to seek treatment wherever they want. There are cancer treatments that can only be gotten at Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto - a republican who's an opponent of universal health care was cured here back in the early 90's. I wish I could give you his name, my ex-step father was his post op nurse but he's forgotten his name (says he was an asshole though), & google fails me - it was just a tiny article in the back of the Toronto Star at the time.
posted by zarah at 7:15 AM on February 7, 2010 [4 favorites]


I don't think that anyone has ever doubted that America has the best health care in the world for the wealthy.

Actually, I'm not sure about that. A serious medical problem without insurance can easily run a couple of million dollars. That's not just wealthy, that's super-rich. And if you're in that category you strongly consider going to another country for elective healthcare. "Wealthy", like being able to afford a house and send your kids to an expensive college and take vacations in Europe? Those folks are just as trapped by rising health care costs as anyone.

Both my partner and I have private medical insurance with Blue Cross / California. They raised our rates 30% this year. Not for any specific reason, just increasing costs. My recommended recourse is to switch to a policy with a higher deduction and significantly less coverage of prescription drugs. We can afford the extra expense, but at 20-30% increases a year that won't last long.
posted by Nelson at 7:17 AM on February 7, 2010


Every time I get a life-threatening illness I consider medical tourism. Not just for the sunny beaches, but also for the controversy!
posted by twoleftfeet at 7:23 AM on February 7, 2010


And since most MeFi readers are not Canadian, note that the word “Newfoundland” rhymes with and has the same stress pattern as “understand” in U.S. and Canadian English. (It isn’t NEWfindlind or newFAUNDlind.)
posted by joeclark at 7:26 AM on February 7, 2010 [2 favorites]


This is like saying we should shut down all the public schools in America because Obama sends his kids to private school. In other words, it's either completely stupid (unlikely) or completely disingenuous (likely). An argument only a troll could love...sorry....
posted by facetious at 7:28 AM on February 7, 2010 [3 favorites]


I wish I could give you his name, my ex-step father was his post op nurse but he's forgotten his name (says he was an asshole though), & google fails me - it was just a tiny article in the back of the Toronto Star at the time.

That should be discoverable for anyone in the area with access to a library that keeps newspaper archives.
posted by JHarris at 7:30 AM on February 7, 2010


Newfoundland isn't widely regarded as a go-to destination for critical cardiac care. Reporting on this is pretty much just political douchebaggery. May as well bitch about the head of tourism for Nunavut flying down to Cuba to stick his toes in some warm water... except that in the FPP situation, a life is on the line.
posted by seanmpuckett at 7:33 AM on February 7, 2010 [4 favorites]


I was under the impression that when the surgeons or facilities for a given procedure weren't available in Canada, it wasn't out of the ordinary for the Canadian healthcare system to foot the bill for the procedure elsewhere, often in America. Why is this out of the ordinary? Based on the articles this all seems to be based on speculation fueled by the fact that this guy is rich and kind of a dick.
posted by kableh at 7:35 AM on February 7, 2010


I know I'm echoing some of the above points, but the "conventional wisdom" on this topic drives me NUTS. How anyone can hold up the idea of wealthy foreigners traveling to this country to receive care millions of our own citizens have no access to as an endorsement of our current health care system just blows my mind (and yes, I'm thinking of traveling to Mexico to get that fixed...)
posted by jalexei at 7:37 AM on February 7, 2010


I was under the impression that when the surgeons or facilities for a given procedure weren't available in Canada, it wasn't out of the ordinary for the Canadian healthcare system to foot the bill for the procedure elsewhere, often in America.

That's the way it works in Europe too. You see it a lot more because nations are smaller and have fewer specialists. In north America it's the equivalent of going to another state or province because a doctor a few 100km away can treat your glitch more competently.

Also, I'd like to point out that when this argument is raised in Canada, it's a rallaying cry for improving the public health system to make it more egalitarian. In the US it's seen as proof that public health care doesn't work and we should never ever have it.
posted by clarknova at 7:43 AM on February 7, 2010 [5 favorites]


Canadians travelling to the United States to bypass wait times and to visit top-notch surgical facilities isn't something new, however the leader of a province doing so is.

And I still fail to see why this is anybody's business. Danny was a self-made man worth millions before he ever got into politics. He has better everything than most people, always has, and probably always will. The health care system is the problem here, not Danny Williams. Forget about the flaws in the systems, if I needed serious medical attention and had the cash, I'd be hightailing my ass to the best doctors money could buy. Who wouldn't?

Get well soon Danny! We need you.
posted by futureisunwritten at 7:47 AM on February 7, 2010


This is an outrage. I'm horrified. We must all band together to fight against this horrible misuse of the word "optics".
posted by norm at 7:50 AM on February 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


I also wouldn't be too quick to trust Eastern Health with my life.
posted by futureisunwritten at 7:50 AM on February 7, 2010


Although Newfoundland certainly doesn't have the expertise required to do this type of surgery (or rather, the numbers required to attract the expertise), it's not clear that Canada as a whole doesn't. Most likely there are hospitals in Ontario that could do what he needed.

However, "most likely" is just that, since Williams isn't giving details of his condition, which I don't think means anything beyond personal privacy.

The dude is loaded. Maybe he's just heading to the States to eke out that last .1% of care. Maybe he honestly believes that he will get substantial better treatment down south. Or maybe he just wants a luxuriously-appointed private recovery room1 which he wouldn't get at home.

As long as he works towards improving the public health care back home, especially with the scandals Newfoundland has been having over testing recently, this doesn't matter one bit.

1: You know, with silken surgical gowns, rich mahogany catheters...that kind of stuff.
posted by Lemurrhea at 7:55 AM on February 7, 2010 [4 favorites]


Beck, Hannity, et.al. are gonna ride this one til the cows come home.

Til the cows go home. These guys happen to be pretty far out.
posted by Anything at 8:22 AM on February 7, 2010


however the leader of a province doing so is

Not even true. I can't give you a reference, but when Quebec premier Robert Bourassa had skin cancer in the early 90s, he went to a U.S. clinic for it. It was generally known but did not, as far as I recall, provoke a scandal. (The illness eventually killed him in 1996.)
posted by zadcat at 8:31 AM on February 7, 2010


I have always believed that well-insured Americans surely got better care than your average run-of-the-mill Canadian; given the money changing hands, it has a logical truthiness to it. Imagine my surprise when my well-insured friend in California was diagnosed with the same cancer I had two years ago, and had a substantially worse experience in spite of her high-priced insurance. She was treated in urban California; I was treated at a suburban hospital in the Toronto area.

She woke up after surgery alone and in pain, trying to get the attention of a busy recovery room nurse. I woke up with a nurse at my side, who checked on me constantly and knew I was going to throw up before I did.

Her treatment was interrupted and lengthened because she couldn't get an appointment with her specialist in time post surgery; mine arranged to see me according to my schedule within 5 days of surgery.

While I spent 4 days in radioactive isolation at the hospital, she was sent home after a day and a half because her insurance would only cover a single night in hospital. That means she was sent home a danger to others because of the levels of radiation she was emitting. She ended up staying in a hotel room on her own dime to avoid exposing her young son. That means: the woman who cleaned her room afterward, without the usual precautions, was certainly exposed to unhealthy amounts of radiation. (Everything I left in my room at the hospital was incinerated or kept a safe location for several weeks afterwards.)

She got the scare of her life partway through her treatment when she got a letter saying she had lost her insurance. After a several days of worry, it turned out that a bit of paperwork was missing and a fax repaired it. I forgot my health card when I went in for my surgery, owing to my complete and utter terror at the time; then waved me in just the same.

I don't know why Danny Williams went to the US for treatment. I presume it has something to do with the idea that I have always had; best treatment comes with having to pay upfront. My own experience, and that of my friend in California, is an anecdote. But it reminds me what good treatment I got, and I'm grateful for it.

(Today is my 2nd year cancer-free anniversary!)
posted by Hildegarde at 8:56 AM on February 7, 2010 [33 favorites]


Beck: Rich and benefitting from the current system. Hannity: Rich and benefitting from the current system. Danny Williams: Rich and benefitting from the current system. Exclusive American cardiac surgeons: Rich and benefitting from the current system.

Anybody see a pattern here?
posted by Benny Andajetz at 9:00 AM on February 7, 2010 [3 favorites]


Unspecified?

It's likely Mayo
posted by edgeways at 9:22 AM on February 7, 2010


The great thing about Canadian healthcare is that when it is necessary, you're sent to where you can get the best treatment.

Actually, the most great thing is that in the Canadian system, healthcare ≠ insurance.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:26 AM on February 7, 2010 [2 favorites]


I'm not a fan of the single-payer model, but the Canadian system is attempting to give affordable, decent, if not world-class, care to the middle and lower classes. This is what the American system fails at.

Could you explain how you became an expert on the Canadian system?
posted by KokuRyu at 9:27 AM on February 7, 2010


And I must say this is less an issue about Canadian health care than it is how Danny Williams is an idiot.
posted by KokuRyu at 9:33 AM on February 7, 2010


Beck, Hannity, et.al. are gonna ride this one til the cows come home.
posted by Thorzdad at 10:03 AM on February 7


You know, I've been observing the debate down south for a while now, and I have to tell you, it's infuriating whenever one of these douchebags brings up the Canadian system. And this goes for either side of the issue; these clueless braying morons who insist that the Canadian system is absolutely horrid or absolutely perfect, without any idea of what they're talking about.

For the record, our system isn't perfect; our hospitals, particularly in urban centres, are running at the very limits of their capacity, and wait times can be unreasonably long for some procedures. Our health-care professionals are often overworked and underpaid. But somehow, it works; my own experiences have been positive thus far. Personally, I think a renewed focus on family doctors would solve about ninety percent of our issues, but that's for larger brains than mine to figure out.

In the meantime, my American brothers and sisters, I make this request: Leave us out of it. Unless you happen to carry a provincial health card, you really don't know how our system works, or doesn't work. So stop bringing up Canada's system when debating the state of your own.

Thanks, Yanks!
posted by Jughead at 9:38 AM on February 7, 2010 [6 favorites]


Canadians travelling to the United States to bypass wait times and to visit top-notch surgical facilities isn't something new, however the leader of a province doing so is.

This is just speculative editorializing and has no place in a FPP. Since Danny isn't talking, we have no idea if he would have had to wait at all. Implying that wait times had something to do with his decision is bullshit.
posted by ssg at 10:00 AM on February 7, 2010 [2 favorites]


Personally, I think a renewed focus on family doctors would solve about ninety percent of our issues, but that's for larger brains than mine to figure out.

Oddly enough, I think that's part of the problem down here, too.
posted by kableh at 10:01 AM on February 7, 2010


Cardiologists say Canada has cutting edge cardiac care, virtually no wait times

An interesting twist in the last two lines:
Feindel said the Munk's waiting time for non-emergency cases is within about two weeks. "Few patients really want to rush into a heart operation faster than that."

It's likely Williams's case was not considered urgent if his doctors agreed to let him travel for care.
And happy anniversary Hidegarde!
posted by hangashore at 10:16 AM on February 7, 2010


This is not controversial at all. Danny Williams is cuckoo bananas, don't get me wrong, but this move has nothing to do with it.

If anything, by going to the states, Williams is freeing up a bed in some Newfoundland hospital, which is a good thing.
posted by Sys Rq at 10:38 AM on February 7, 2010 [1 favorite]



This is just speculative editorializing and has no place in a FPP. Since Danny isn't talking, we have no idea if he would have had to wait at all. Implying that wait times had something to do with his decision is bullshit.


I apologize for editorializing; I have been here a little over a week and am learning the dynamics of the site.

I meant the latter with respect to Williams (top-notch) as I really do not believe a Premier would wait for a necessary surgery in Canada. The former is a more common phemenon with well-off Canadians. I apologize for the lack of clarity in saying that.
posted by Hiker at 10:50 AM on February 7, 2010


Unspecified? It's likely Mayo

For cardio, I'd bet it's Cleveland.

Bonus: The director of the Cleveland FREE Clinic is also named Danny Williams.
posted by Herodios at 11:18 AM on February 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


We must all band together to fight against this horrible misuse of the word "optics".

So right. About six months ago I had never heard it in this sense of "appearances, from a public-relations perspective". Now I encounter it three or four times a day.
posted by game warden to the events rhino at 11:49 AM on February 7, 2010


"And since most MeFi readers are not Canadian, note that the word “Newfoundland” rhymes with and has the same stress pattern as “understand” in U.S. and Canadian English. (It isn’t NEWfindlind or newFAUNDlind.)"

As a Newfoundlander living in Ohio, I can tell you that many of the people I meet have tried to correct me in my pronunciation of my home province, and even the people I've worked with for 9 years can still not pronounce it, despite how many times they've heard me say it. Dealing with owners of Newfoundland dogs is a trip, also, since they insist that the dog's name is pronounced differently.

That being said, and back on topic, I have health insurance from my job, but I can't count on it being around forever - each time our union contract is renegotiated, it seems as though we lose medical benefits. Even now, there are a lot of hoops to be jumped through to claim full benefits (ie. have to call the insurance company before going to an emergency room! Yeah, sure, let's make a quick call before we go to the EMERGENCY ROOM! Oh wait, I'm on hold...)
posted by newfers at 11:53 AM on February 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


The whole Danny Williams thing is an "issue" mostly for the way he's done it - literally disappearing. If he or his spokesperson had simply announced his illness and that he had decided to go to Dr 'X', or clinic 'Y', or whatever, there would be far less fuss.

You can just about any cardiac or cancer treatment somewhere in Canada.

For the record, between my wife's parents and my parents, we've witnessed the following medical processes:

- two knees, one hip - wait times were significant (6 - 9 months) but not unbearable
- prostate cancer, successful outcome
- breast cancer, successful outcome
- rectal cancer, treatment almost complete, successful outcome expected
- lung cancer, terminal
- quadruple bypass, prolonged and unsuccessful recuperation (terminal)

In all the above, access to specialists was fairly fast (immediate for heart issue, 1-3 weeks for cancer specialists). Treatment was thorough, competent and compassionate. (Especially the nurses. I heart our nurses).

Bills? There were some bills for incidentals, prostheses and consumables. Most Canadians have supplemental insurance through their employers that will cover drugs and many ancillary costs.

It's my experience that most Canadians, even most affluent ones, will go with the Canadian system. Most often, only the very rich will jet to the States as the first step. But the rich do that anywhere.

Most Americans don't know what they're missing.
posted by Artful Codger at 12:46 PM on February 7, 2010 [4 favorites]


Could you explain how you became an expert on the Canadian system?

Nothing I said would require any expertise whatsoever. Could you explain your point?
posted by spaltavian at 1:10 PM on February 7, 2010


You say "affordable, decent, if not world-class, care."

Care to explain why you say Canadian healthcare is not world-class? Why it is "decent" and not "excellent"? Why I shouldn't think you're full of shit and don't know the first thing about what you're talking about?
posted by five fresh fish at 2:54 PM on February 7, 2010


In Newfoundland he's known as Danny Millions.
posted by Flashman at 3:09 PM on February 7, 2010


So, you're saying that a "conservative" is undermining the idea of public healthcare in his country?!

Gee, that's surprising.
posted by markkraft at 3:14 PM on February 7, 2010 [2 favorites]


I'm not a fan of the single-payer model, but the Canadian system is attempting to give affordable, decent, if not world-class, care to the middle and lower classes.

I just wondered how you would be able to provide any sort of intelligent commentary on the Canadian system.
posted by KokuRyu at 3:25 PM on February 7, 2010


Care to explain why you say Canadian healthcare is not world-class? Why it is "decent" and not "excellent"? Why I shouldn't think you're full of shit and don't know the first thing about what you're talking about?

I didn't say it wasn't world-class. I said it was "decent, if not world-class". The two of you may not be familiar with that turn of phrase, but that's no reason for either of you to be dicks about it.

I'm not a fan of the single-payer model, but the Canadian system is attempting to give affordable, decent, if not world-class, care to the middle and lower classes.

I just wondered how you would be able to provide any sort of intelligent commentary on the Canadian system.


So, you disagree that the Canadian system attempts to give better care to those with money than the American system? Because that is clearly my point and is clearly not something that would require "expertise", which I do not claim to have. I'm not particularly interested in defending my right to make such a comment to you.
posted by spaltavian at 3:48 PM on February 7, 2010


*to those with less money
posted by spaltavian at 3:49 PM on February 7, 2010


I just wondered how you would be able to provide any sort of intelligent commentary on the Canadian system

What qualifications are you looking for, exactly? A subscription to the Walrus? MacLeans? High school current events?

Health Canada itself says this about our health care system: "...universal coverage for medically necessary health care services provided on the basis of need, rather than the ability to pay."

By bringing up "the ability to pay", it's pretty explicit that Health Canada feels providing health care to people that can't afford it is one of their core functions. Is that so different from what spaltavian said? How about if I re-iterated what he said for you and disclosed that we have 2 PhDs in nursing in the family that have been working in the Canadian health care system for 30 odd years?

Hey Canada: We have guests coming over. Let's drop the tired "chip on the shoulder" routine already.
posted by Kirk Grim at 3:52 PM on February 7, 2010 [4 favorites]


These days I begin to feel like I ought to be apologizing for some of my fellow Canadians' comments. It's an odd sensation.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 4:08 PM on February 7, 2010


apologizing for some of my fellow Canadians' comments

that is SO Canadian!
posted by Kirk Grim at 4:24 PM on February 7, 2010


Newfoundland isn't widely regarded as a go-to destination for critical cardiac care.

Citation please? My point here being is while it's true that NFLD has been a have not province for some time, that's a rather sweeping statement to make without proof.

Reporting on this is pretty much just political douchebaggery.

and...

And I still fail to see why this is anybody's business. Danny was a self-made man worth millions before he ever got into politics. He has better everything than most people, always has, and probably always will. The health care system is the problem here, not Danny Williams. Forget about the flaws in the systems, if I needed serious medical attention and had the cash, I'd be hightailing my ass to the best doctors money could buy. Who wouldn't?

It's not "douchebaggery" at all. It raises several legitimate questions.

The problem here is that Williams is the premier of the province, and as such, he's the guy who's in charge of how health care dollars are spent. So if there's a problem with the level of cardiac care in NFLD, it is technically his fault.

The other issue here is that Williams has been a rather vocal opponent of any two-tier health care system; so suddenly dashing off to the US for a procedure appears to be the height of hypocrisy. Williams has also been very good at playing the poor Newfoundland card, painting NFLD (and by extension, himself) as the poor boy on the Canadian block... so the fact that he personally has enough cash in hand to do something like this is rather jarring to the image he's tried to cultivate, to say the least.

There is also the question why he didn't go for the surgery in Canada. It's a big country. Surely there's at least one cardiac surgeon capable of what he needs?

I haven't seen it in the commentary on this yet, but one wonders how many people feel stung over this because of the big pro-seal hunt stand Canada has taken on behalf of Williams too - NFLDers being the real benefactors of commercial seal hunting, not the Inuit in the north.

What a private citizen does with his/her money is his/her business. When a sitting politician who's made lots of hay using health-care related issues does a bunk at the first sign of personal health issues, it's legitimate to question it.


NOT NEWFIEST
posted by Zinger at 5:29 PM on February 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


On a related note, see this article by a Canadian (well, Scottish-Canadian, I think) health researcher who believes that we're actually spending too much on the wrong health care items.
posted by greatgefilte at 6:22 PM on February 7, 2010


Thanks for that link, greatgefilte.

The author brings up valid points about the Canadian system. In my experience many of those are being addressed, and others are "growing pains" that will work themselves out. I don't think the system is badly out of whack... yet.

From dealing with my doctor, and with my parents and inlaw's doctors, I'm already seeing greater emphasis on serious discussions about options and outcomes. On occasion I've had to get a bit pushy about it, but once asked, the doctors have listened, and provided good answers that enabled us to make educated decisions.

The author bemoans the clamour for expensive treatments and early screenings. This can hardly be blamed on the patient, in most cases. We get screened in the way we do because we and our doctors are told to do so. Re expensive treatments, again we can only rely on the medical establishment to advise us on the appropriateness of a given treatment, based on research and trials.

The medical community must provide the advice, and the government health departments must make appropriate choices. That's what it comes down to.

Finally, the author criticizes fee-for-service. I don't think that's as serious a problem as he makes out. One solution, is to value the doctor's advice as highly as a test, so that either way, he's paid for seeing the patient and providing appropriate care.
posted by Artful Codger at 7:44 PM on February 7, 2010


the Dominion of Newfoundland? Don't even get me started on that Smallwood chap!
posted by blue_beetle at 8:21 PM on February 7, 2010


Artful Codger, I actually caught an interview with Dr. Wright and an American oncologist with opposing views on the CBC this morning. As can be expected, I imagine the best path lies somewhere in middle.
posted by greatgefilte at 8:38 PM on February 7, 2010


I just wondered how you would be able to provide any sort of intelligent commentary on the Canadian system.

Probably in the same manner that Canadians on Metafilter often comment with authority on the efficacy and outcomes of the American healthcare system. If we're interested in a subject, we learn about it from a variety of sources, regardless of nationality.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 8:44 PM on February 7, 2010 [2 favorites]


suddenly dashing off to the US for a procedure appears to be the height of hypocrisy

So did our medical system send him off to the US, or did he up and choose to do that on his own dime? There's a world of difference between the two. I'm all for us taking advantage of US facilities when it's cheaper and/or more effective. Flying the guy to a close-by state makes way more sense than flying him out to, say, Vancouver.

If he took off to the US on his own dime, well, no skin off my ass. But it sure makes him look like a douchebag, especially in light of his management of the province's healthcare system. And if he took off to the US on my dime, when he could have been served here: well, fuck him and I hope the Newfies kick his ass out of government.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:27 PM on February 7, 2010


Unless you happen to carry a provincial health card, you really don't know how our system works, or doesn't work.

It doesn't help anyone to pretend that this statement has even a shred of truth to it. Whether you have a health card or not has no bearing on your ability to inform yourself about Canadian health care. It's as silly as saying that you can't comment on the political system in the U.S. unless you have a voter registration card.
posted by one more dead town's last parade at 5:57 AM on February 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


Oh, and:

I haven't seen it in the commentary on this yet, but one wonders how many people feel stung over this because of the big pro-seal hunt stand Canada has taken on behalf of Williams too - NFLDers being the real benefactors of commercial seal hunting, not the Inuit in the north.

This is the same Danny Williams who actively (and successfully) worked to turf all the Conservative MPs in the last federal election, no? And yet everyone was shoving various seal parts in the G7 finance ministers' faces. Apparently Williams takes no prisoners and no damage.
posted by one more dead town's last parade at 6:04 AM on February 8, 2010


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