For one thing, it was tacky. It was too much like that famous beer commercial of several years ago. Also, it was ignorant and insular, with lines like "We say zed not zee" (only the US says zee - many other countries around the world say zed, and it's not even original to us). But mostly, what Olympic host has ever been so blatant about trumpeting themselves? We are the HOST for Pete's sake. We are supposed to be welcoming other countries, not thumbing our noses at them.
Apparently Koyczan was a last-minute addition to the show. I'd like to know who put him in and why. I just forced myself to watch him again: "Some say what defines us is something as simple as "please" and "thank you"... but we are more than genteel and civilized... we dream so big there are those who would call our ambition an industry... we reforest what we clear because we believe in generations beyond our own... we are the abandoned hesitation of all those who can't wait... we are the surprise the world has in store for you... Canada is the "what" in "what's new"... we are the true north strong and free. And what's more is that we didn't just say it; we made it be."
Ick. What is it in our national psyche that leads us to trumpet our insecurity? We seem to have some deep-seated need to yell at the US: "We're better than you!" while muttering to ourselves, "We know we're not! We're not worthy!"
We see ourselves as the eternal underdog, but we're one of the richest and most powerful countries on earth. With a population less than California's, we're a member of the G8. We're at or near the top of all the quality indexes: wealth, health, quality of life.
Do we feel unworthy because we lucked into vast natural resources that are the backbone of our economy? Or because we are such poor guardians of our great luck: clear-cutting forests, spewing pollution from the tar sands, selling our steel companies to the Chinese, paving our farmland, embroiling first nations in endless land claim settlements, and tearing down our heritage buildings?
That beer commercial was just a stupid campaign to sell crappy beer. If it has become our model for displaying national pride, we're in trouble.