In yesterday's Sun, deep integration fluffer Barbara Yaffe writes :
"Influential former federal minister and leading business executive David Emerson is calling on Canada to lead a new charge on continental integration.
He calls his idea Project North America."
Gosh what a snappy name. A bit too similar perhaps to University of Arizona's North America Project or North American Future Project from the Center for Strategic and International Studies, but as rebranding the SPP goes, it beats the hell out of Yaffe's choice a year ago - North American Standards and Regulations Area - which somehow never really caught on.
But who better to relaunch The Big Idea than David Emerson? As VP of the Canadian Council of Chief Executives, he signed their North American Security and Prosperity Initiative in 2003, and then two years later as Canada's Minister of Trade he signed its government-sponsored successor : the Security and Prosperity Partnership.
Mind you he's gone right off variations on that name :
"The SPP "has become code for some kind of conspiracy to destroy the sovereignty of the participating countries. Hokum for the most part but [the notion] has received a fair amount of media play."
In February Emerson called once again for a North American security perimeter and greater integration on regulations.
Now if we can just get over our unfortunate tendency to see government and industry collaborating behind closed doors to deregulate and militarize the country without any public input or scrutiny as some kind of a conspiracy...