Katrina and softwood lumber

I can’t believe what I’m seeing in the southern USA after Katrina. Devastation. My heartfelt sympathy to all those involved, both those affected, and those that are offering immediate aid. I’ve been involved with search and rescue for many years, and I’ve seen some of the pain.
How about a crazy suggestion? The people in the south are in need of help: both volunteer time and money. As usual, I expect that Canada will chime in through the Feds – and so we should.
But what about this:
We have a ‘trade war’ going on with the US over softwood lumber duties with a 5 billion dollar bounty tied up in an account somewhere. That bounty is slated for either Canadian lumber companies (if we win) or US lumber companies (if the US wins). That seems like a real stumbling block to negotiations.
What say we just arrange to donate the bucks to the disaster, perhaps through FEMA or the Red Cross.
That does the following:
  • It helps those down south who’ve really got nothing left.
  • It helps both Canadians and Americans work together in crisis.
  • It takes the trade war prize away, and might lead everyone back to the table for a constructive conclusion.
I doubt the companies will lose. They will all gain from the rebuilding effort.
Everyone wins.
I know, kinda simplistic, but…the thought crossed my mind and I thought I’d mention it.

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