BMO doesn’t get it

Every weekday morning, it’s my job to check the Canadian business news to post on the company website. We upload about four stories each day-an easy task if you have a RSS feed, but difficult when you can only post good news. I can’t, for instance, link to a story about layoffs and falling profits (READ: every article in the business section).  While posting only positive (or at least neutral) articles is a misrepresentation of reality, I understand why they want me to do it. Bad news is a downer.

It’s no secret that the global economy sucks, and Canada is no different. Sure, we’re doing better than Japan, Europe and the United States, but we’re in no way out of the forest. Just ask the thousands of Canadians without jobs. It’s rough out there. A lot of us are concerned, and with good reason.

This all being said, the majority of us still have access to food, shelter and clothing-the bare necessities that keep us alive. When you think about it, those are the things that we actually need. There are millions of people in the world who have never been able to take those things for granted.

It was in watching the BMO commercial that I was reminded of just how good we have it. (Sometimes the truth shows up in the most unexpected places).

Watch it here:

Here is an old woman who, in the West, should have retired a decade ago. She’s on her feet and in the sun, working to pay the bills. Enter the white, slightly overweight North Americans, complaining about their investments. They are worried that their *surplus* money isn’t as valuable as it used to be. Forgetting that they have enough money to travel in the first place, they stumble around with broken and frankly embarrassing Spanish, declaring that the old woman’s worry dolls aren’t big enough for their problems.

As a Canadian, I’m ashamed every time I see this commercial, but admittedly not surprised. Without being too stereotypical, it’s not hard to conceive how this ad was approved by some navel-gazing multimillionaire. It’s funny because Canadians are guilty of accusing Americans of their egocentrism. It makes us feel good to differentiate ourselves from their greed. Maybe we’re not so different after all.

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5 thoughts on “BMO doesn’t get it

  1. I think it should be noted that there is a very good chance that the navel-gazing multimillionaire that approved this as well as a significan portion of the people running BMO are probably Americans. Granted i have no hard evidence to back this up other than personal knolage of other BIG Canadian companies who’s CEO’s and High up management people are American. Anyway i’m just not too happy about being compaired to Americans.

    • Yeah it’s not a great comparison, but if the shoe fits…
      That said, Canadians, as a rule, are lovely individuals:)

  2. you really are a dick alex.

    you’ve been showing your true colours a lot lately.

    and to comment on your post jen (because doing this just to call alex a dick would be weird)I think it’s important to note that this type phenomenon isn’t restricted to westerners in foreign countries.

    Everyday, even in canada, there are people working (usually in the service industry) well past the “normal” retirement-age to, like you said, pay the bills. And nowadays people on tv talk more about how to fix your savings then how to keep people off the streets. sad.

    at least the woman in the commercial lived in a warmer climate.

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