"Uneasy Neighbo(u)rs" by David Jones & David Kilgour

Uneasy Neighbo(u)rs:
Canada, the USA and the Dynamic of State, Industry and Culture

For Americans, the Canadian emphasis on their difference elicits only shrug-of-the-shoulder indifference. And, to be sure, it is just another facet of not paying attention to their northern neighbors. After all, what significant nation emphasizes that it is not another? But Canadians seem to need to rip up their social, political and emotional roots on a regular basis to examine them. Such an exercise isn’t conducive to growth.”

Despite sharing the world’s largest undefended border, the current relationship between the US and Canada is not quite as sanguine as our geographic proximity would suggest. We are related to one another through a number of factors – social, political, technological and economic – however, each country seems more preoccupied with counting grievances against the other than constructively working towards mutual understanding – or at least appreciation.
In Uneasy Neighbo(u)rs: Canada, the USA and the Dynamic of State, Industry and Culture (Wiley, September 2007; Cloth; $27.95) authors David T. Jones (an American) and David Kilgour (a Canadian) examine international issues from the front lines. Without resorting to blanket classification of our differences (whether they be “black and white” or “fire and ice”), Jones and Kilgour delve into the middle ground to explore the hot-button issues:

· National identity and Self -Image: “The United States has emphasized (and is willing to enforce) unity; Canada has tolerated an almost unprecedented level of disunity and has remained one country.”
· Democratic Culture and Practices: While Americans view government as a necessary evil, Canadians tend to view government as a good thing, trusted to act in the public interest.
· Economic and Resource Management: One of the greatest challenges the US and Canada face is the tension between energy use and conservation – the US is the world’s largest energy consumer while Canada could be the largest producer of petroleum in the world.
· Culture, Education and Religion: The US and Canada hold their respective cultures as a point of pride, but are both struggling as public education fails to meet the national standards and the standards of other industrialized countries.
· Health Care: No matter what side of the border you’re on, health care faces a systematic problem: “in the end, we all die.” Both countries face the same frustration as many worthy social programs are competing for limited funding – health care included.
· Military: The US outspends the world for defense/security – and still believes itself at risk; has Canada abdicated its security to the US?

By taking on the issues that bind our countries together, Jones and Kilgour are ultimately searching for productive avenues of discussion to move beyond the mudslinging that so often passes for discourse across our border.

About the Authors
David T. Jones, based in Arlington VA, is a retired US senior foreign-service officer, focusing on NATO and arms control issues. He served as the political minister counselor at the US Embassy in Ottawa from 1992-1996.
David Kilgour, based in Ottawa, is a former MP for both the Conservative and Liberal Parties. He has also served as the Secretary of State for Latin America and Africa, Secretary of State for Asia-Pacific and Deputy Speaker of the House.

Published by John Wiley & Sons Inc.
September 2007; Cloth; $27.95

ISBN 978-0-470-15306-2

4 Comments on ""Uneasy Neighbo(u)rs" by David Jones & David Kilgour"

  1. Diana Thébaud Nicholson August 24, 2007 at 3:05 pm ·

    From: Jonesdt@aol.com
    Sent: August 22, 2007
    Subject: The Press Release for “Uneasy Neighbo(u)rs”
    As we have talked about this effort for a year and you knew it was coming, we wanted you to have the information immediately. We’re told that it will be in the stores (Chapters and Indigo) in early September, so any circulation that you could give it to Wednesday Night members, we would appreciate.
    It was fun to research/write, and we hope that it will be engaging to read. It does arrive at a good time as Montebello raised more questions than it answered, and this is another stone tossed within the glass house.
    In any event, we appreciate the support you have given us, and hope to see you sooner rather than later.
    Enjoy. David and Terry

  2. Diana Thébaud Nicholson August 25, 2007 at 2:22 pm ·

    25 August 2007
    The Chapters Website carries a title “Alternative North Americas: Canada and the United States” by the same authors. This reference is left over from a relationship between the authors and the University of Alberta prior to the selection of John Wile & Sons to publish their work. To avoid confusion, it is suggested that interested purchasers of “Uneasy Neighbo(u)rs” should stick to Amazon.

  3. Diana Thébaud Nicholson January 3, 2008 at 9:28 am ·

    Vermont Public Radio
    Authors David Kilgour and David T. Jones on U.S./Canada relations
    Thursday January 3, 2008
    The relationship between the US and Canada is a long-standing friendship. But it’s not without occasional tension. There are times that tension is even felt in Vermont. David Kilgour and David T. Jones have just written a new book on the subject, called “Uneasy Neighbors: Canada, the USA, and the Dynamics of State, Industry, and Culture.” They spoke with VPR’s Jane Lindholm about the status of our relationship with Canada.

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