1 = 1 (not valid between 1976 and 2007)

All of Canada celebrated today as the Canadian dollar achieved parity with the U.S. dollar. Well, except for in Saskatchewan, where they instead looked up the word "parity".

Gee golly FACLC, even you're celebrating this?

Yes I am, and unlike the people dancing and celebrating at work today, it has nothing to do with reflexive anti-Americanism, or boosterish (and boorish) Canadian pride.

Well then why are you so happy?

Because of intense personal benefit. Next year I am planning a trip to the United States. Plane tickets just got a lot more affordable. For example, say on June 11th 2008 you want a one-way ticket from Seattle to Boston: Travelocity.ca says that'll be $194 (Canadian dollars). Meanwhile, Travelocity.com can get you there for $185 (American dollars, which as of today are the same as Canadian dollars for my Saskatchewan readers). On longer flights, this disparity grows... disparagingly. More importantly, this is already adjusted: a month ago such a flight cost about $225 Canadian, and a year ago would have been closer to $300.

Who do we have to thank for this? Paul Martin. For one thing, as some will remember, the dollar was a relatively strong high 70s performer when he took power in 1993. By his departure in 2003 the dollar had dropped to historic lows. (This, incidently, is a major reason why 1995-2003 was also the drought of Canadian teams appearing in the Stanley Cup Finals). Martin's coup suddenly caused the dollar to shoot up in value, as Canadian currency was no longer under the control of a dangerous lunatic. Additionally, Martin's politiking skills were so poor that Stephen Harper was able to become Prime Minister, and I don't need to tell you how confident the world markets are in his leadership abilities. (Unless you're from Saskatchewan. I'll summarize. Tory good. Liberal bad).

So citizens of Canada, dance. Unless you're from Ontario, already whining how the high dollar will hurt your exports. Boo hoo.