The party with Barack Obama!

February 24, 2009

The city of Ottawa has lived at the time of the party and especially at the time of Barack Obama. All those who know the area know that the people of this city are very welcoming and in despite of a false reputation for austerity. Ottawa is a city of celebration !
The recent visit of U.S. President looked disappointing for the people of the place as no public demonstration was planned. It took the initiative of the President himself to change the situation and add a historic moment to his visit. Barack Obama is a man who likes to discover and he could not come to Ottawa without walking down the street if only briefly.
But contrary to what many may believe, it was not his first visit to the country. Barack had come in 2004 to attend the wedding of his sister whose family spouse lives in Burlington Ontario. It seems that he loved Toronto. Unfortunately for Quebecers, Obama does not speak French …
He promised to return but he would like the temperature a little warmer.
And this is a strong possibility especially since he made friend with our Governor General Michaëlle Jean who he invited to the White House with his family. Obviously the two share the same culture of black people and one had to expect a friendship between the two.
A great summer into perspective!
Bernard Bujold
Photo 1: The Hill in Ottawa
Photo 2: Fans in the ByWard Market
Photo 3: Barack Obama and his family – His sister Maya Soetoro-Ng
Photo 4: Barack Obama and Michaëlle Jean

Barack Obama in Canada

February 17, 2009

Canada welcomes the star of the hour on the planet, President Barack Obama, who is more popular than Celine Dion and Paul McCartney, perhaps even the Pope! Unfortunately our welcome is not very spectacular and it is questionable whether we should have made the things a little bigger! The working meeting between the Prime Minister of Canada Stephen Harper and U.S. President Barack Obama make no place for ceremony as it was the case with its predecessors. We should recall the visit of Ronald Reagan, while Brian Mulroney had sung on stage his old Irish songs. Obviously we cannot ask Stephen Harper to sing rap and one can even wonder whether the two men will eat the same sandwiches. It seems that Barack loves hamburgers with pineapple …
It would have been appropriate, even necessary, to organize at least one public event related to the presidential visit to allow Canadians to welcome the most admired men in the world: President Obama. Why not planning a ceremony on the Parliamentary Hill ? This event would have been a historic moment for the country and would not need a long trip from the main event. If we had offered a more elaborate program to the President, he would have probably invited Michelle to join him. I am convinced that Laureen and Michelle would have liked each other very much. Already, Barack has become the friend of our Governor General and his gataway in the Byward Market to buy maple biscuits (my favorites cookies) proves that he love discovering place where he visits.
Ottawa is a city that offers many attractions including the most beautiful museums in the country. We could have organized a trip to the Natinal Gallery of Canada located a few blocks from Parliament.
I hope that the second meeting will be a bit more festive that this first one and foremost, that there will be less pressure to bring back the visitor to the airport…
Link story on the organization of the visit.
Photos du haut: Barack Obama – Air Force One (Photo Pete Souza)
Photo du centre: Stephen et Laureen Harper
Photo du bas: Barack Obama – Air Force One(Photo Pete Souza – The White House)

A Great Photographer – Peter Souza

February 17, 2009

Pete Souza is the new official photographer at the White House. He was professor of communications at the University of Ohio and a former press photographer by trade but also ex-official photographer of Ronald Reagan. He accepted the invitation by Barack Obama to record with images the History of the Presidency. Souza is well respected and he promotes the use of digital. He uses Canon D5 and he recently published a beautiful book of pictures “The Rise of Barack Obama.” offers him a mention in The Best 2009. Good luck to you!

Bernard Bujold
Story about the Official Nomination of Pete Souza
Link to the book: The Raise of Barack Obama
Interview with Pete Souza
Personal WebSite of Pete Souza
Site The White House Washington

The French President and Quebec

February 17, 2009

The boiling President of France, Nicolas Sarkozy, is not a relaxing man! He never hesitates to invite protesters a little too garish (scum) to take the streets and have a physical fight! He even made his name when he convinced the kidnappers to release the children in a school in France. After that event, he was considered a brave man who is not afraid to take risks. It does not avoid to show his displeasure against journalists when he found them a little insulting and the interview with 60 Minutes (CBS) is the best example! (See You Tube video interview below) It is therefore not surprising that he sided with his friend Paul Desmarais in the Quebec sovereignty debate. Sarko may be living in France but his best friend is Quebecers. In a sense, his position is very commendable because it demonstrates that this man is faithful to his friends. The opposite would be demoralizing! Of course for Quebec nationalists, this position is a kind of provocation, insulting, but basically, these are just opinions of a president elected for a few years. No laws have been passed and no regulatory action was taken against Quebec. Since we have a Liberal government in Quebec, for the next 4 years, the PQ leader Pauline Marois can rest easy and especially to prepare herself for the future. If she was Prime Minister and that a referendum had been won, the situation would be different and Sarko would probably have thought longer before speaking. But he knew that for the moment, he did not have to take any decision. In fact, this statement from Sarko is very good for the PQ because it revives sovereignists troops. One could say that Sarko acted in “provocation”, but hey, he likes to provoke. It’s his style and we must accept it as it is! Nicolas Sarkozy shows his positions. Worse is the politician who says something and does the opposite. At least we know where Nicolas Sarkozy stands in his thinking. And let us not forget that Sarko is the head of the French. Let them manage their own family squabbles and focus on our own. Each garden and enjoy the spring approche.
Viva family and friends!
Bernard Bujold