The deans of architecture at University of Michigan, University of California-Berkeley, and two architects from D.C. and Vermont presented lectures and descriptions of solutions and problems facing the world in the upcoming years of energy scarcity and global warming.

After the lectures in an enormous new auditorium, the Canadian attendees were engaged in informal questions and answers with the presenters. At one point a voice from the audience pointed out the interest in the U.S. bringing water from Canada to Los Angeles. He mentioned the interest in extracting the enormous oil reserves in the sands of Canada. Numerous comments focused on the U.S. interest in Canadian resources.
So, I thought it would be interesting to ask this question: "Raise your hand if you feel that the U.S. would invade Canada to secure these resources." Half in jest, to challenge the discussion, I sent the question out to the audience.  

To my amazement, nearly the entire audience raised their hand. All the presenters seemed in shock. Especially me. I rephrased the question and asked this: "Raise your hand if you feel that the U.S. would militarily invade Canada and occupy the country to insure the U.S. had access to water and oil." The audience, again, raised their hands in unison.
The remainder of the Q&A involved discussions on the invasion and occupation of Iraq, the fact that the U.S. press sanitizes the news to slant the news in favor of the administration, that the world news is quite different from the U.S. news, and that the U.S. populace is not aware of the issues facing Canada and Mexico as threats from the U.S.

This was hard to take as a believer in the U.S. system, democracy and freedom.
The last question from the audience hit hard. "How do you explain the intentions of two families, Clinton and Bush, to lead the U.S. for possibly 28 consecutive years?" None of us had an answer and we wrapped up the session, went out to a terrific French restaurant and went home.           

Dave Sellers lives in Warren.