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You read it here first: Martin reinvents himself

by Judi Mcleod

March 1, 2004

Don’t bother "Mr. Prime Minister" Paul Martin with petty details of the Quebec sponsorship scandal, or for that matter, anything else Canadian. as of March 1, Prime Minister Paul Martin’s stage is not the Land of the Maple Leaf, it’s the international arena.

Thanks to a panel of 18 experts, including U.S. former treasury secretary Robert Rubin and Martin’s longtime mentor Canadian international expert Maurice Strong, Canada’s prime minister co-chairs the Private Sector and Development Commission with the likes of former Mexican president Ernesto Zedillo and senior United Nations official Mark Malloch Brown.

The impossible mission of this latest UN group is to convince the governments of poor countries to make bureaucracies less threatening for unregistered workers. The group will also exert influence on the rogue governments to cut back on punitive taxes and flush out these countries’ "corrupt officials" who have been known to frighten illegals away from legitimate economies by forcing them to pay unaffordable bribes.

There are some that feel some Commission members have first hand experience in this league.

Martin claims expertise in the economics of Third World countries and knowledge of their governments.

Leaders of these countries could be forgiven for asking: "Who is this guy?"

Back home where he’s been on the Canadian stage for a matter of just a few months, Paul Martin, the Prime Minister became the bad guy in act 1. a scathing report from auditor-General Sheila Fraser revealed that a half dozen government-owned companies are implicated in $100 million worth of questionable sponsorship transactions–with no paper work backing them up.

But Martin strategy to make a fast exit Stage Left precedes the nagging sponsorship scandal.

and, you read it here first. In our Feb. 2, 2004 cover story, wrote that Paul Martin would "morph" from Canadian Prime Minister into international leader, courtesy of UN Secretary-General Kofi annan, Maurice Strong et al.

The morphing of Martin from a domestic to an international figure began just one month after his December 12, 2003 swearing in ceremony.

Canada’s Liberal government has a somewhat jingoistic attitude regarding the world’s largest bureaucracy headquartered in Manhattan. Indeed, the government seems to prefer Kofi Company to their next-door american cousins.

Even though editors hoped to flag american attention through outlets like and, media silence followed CFP’s February 2 prediction, The Morphing of Martin.

Then on Feb. 24 came word from Toronto Star Ottawa bureau chief Susan Delacourt that "Martin (was to) share (the) UN stage with annan.

"Prime Minister Paul Martin will be trading his road warrior gear for the mantle of international statesman within the week, with plans to land at the United Nations next Monday at the side of UN Secretary-General Kofi annan," wrote Delacourt.

With the sponsorship scandal still hanging over his head, Martin was to leave off crisscrossing the country explaining his part in the affair to go to New York.

a closer look behind the spin doctor hype indicates that Martin will be at the UN to table his report on improving the economies of developing nations. Days after that, annan will be in Ottawa for an official state visit.

Leaders of developing countries may ponder how Martin made it so quickly to the top rung of the UN ladder.

Both Martin and annan maintain close ties to international expert Maurice Strong, whose claims to fame include being the shadowy architect of Kyoto.

Strong, a senior advisor to beleaguered Paul Martin seems to be spending a lot of time away from Ottawa these days, having lately returned to Korea on yet another UN mission. That Strong is dodging Ottawa because of the Quebec sponsorship affair is only a rumour.

Meanwhile, Martin may have the look of damaged goods in the Land of the Maple Leaf. But how long will that matter when he’s become an international statesman on the world stage?

Canada Free Press founding editor Most recent by Judi McLeod is an award-winning journalist with 30 years experience in the print media. Her work has appeared on, Drudge Report,, Glenn Beck. Judi can be reached at: [email protected]

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