It’s Great Up North

I was going to write this in french and put in some of my thoughts on the Boisclair victory and the renewed promises of a referendum if the PQ wins the next election. But I don’t feel like it so I’ll just quote from this Guardian article written going from the US to Canada.

And that, in short, explains why leaving America for Canada is done with no enormous regret. Behind you lies the weight of American touchiness and hysteria, the radio shock jocks, the twerpish, bow-tied TV pundits, the religious nuts who deny evolution with the phrase ‘intelligent design’ and the madness that descants on the ills of passive smoking, yet allows a tax break on SUVs that consume one gallon every 12 miles. This is to say little of a President who seems only confident when he is standing at a podium as commander-in-chief with bristling military types behind him talking about ‘Amraaaaka’.

If only on the grounds of Canada’s economic success, Americans should take more notice. Last week, the Liberal government announced that it would cut C$30 billion out of the budget because of the enormous fiscal surplus, currently running at about C$13.4bn a year. Just over C$5bn is to be given back to Canadians on taxes collected this year. And in the future, some of the the surplus will be spent on training, the settling of new immigrants and student grants.

The main point, which you never hear in Britain or America, is that Canada alone among G7 countries is balancing its budget. When you compare its performance with the Bush administration’s (the US trade deficit is $706bn; the budget deficit is predicted to be $521bn this year), it’s a wonder Canadians aren’t a bit more cocky. But during a week in Toronto, I didn’t hear the tiniest bit of chauvinism, economic or otherwise.


martin November 20, 2005

Wow! Intéressant. Mais si les finances du fédéral se porte aussi bien, on ne peut pas en dire autant de toutes les provinces…

Mr. Moral November 23, 2005

Intéressant comme son interprétation du Canada semble seulement être l’ontario … et les provinces de l’ouest .

Frank November 23, 2005

Although my family and I came here solely for personal reasons, the points quoted in the article have made the transition that much easier.

That’s not to say it wasn’t fun being young and living in the big crazy city.

Patrick November 23, 2005

Mr. Moral. Euhhh, tu vois-ça ou au juste? Parce qu’il parle pas du français et ne mentionne pas le Québec spécifiquement? Il ne mentionne pas l’Ontario non plus…

aj November 23, 2005

Hey, the States might have Tucker Carlson, but we have Daniel Turp, his PQ clone ;) And they might have Rush Limbaugh and Howard Stern, but we have Jeff Fillion and Gilles Proulx…and loads of conservative columnist-pundits in every paper, English and French…every society has its types, I guess. As for SUVs – I think ours are less noticeable because they’re not covered in flags and ribbons.

Mr. Moral November 24, 2005

Non, c’est plus que ca.
Eg. Il ne parle pas des 2 langues officielles. Il parle des conservateurs et des liberaux, mais pas du bloc ou des NPD. C’est une impression que j’ai qu’il resume le Canada à la lutte de l’Ontario pour les prochaines élections.

En passant Ontario et provinces de l’ouest ca élimine bien du monde, les maritimes, le Québec et idéologiquement la Colombie-Britanique.

julie November 29, 2005

Seems to me that if The Guardian is writing a general comparison between the States and Canada, it’s to be expected that the journalist stick with generalities (not to mention the latest news from Canada) than go into the specifics of Quebec language and identity, or that of other “distinct” regions of Canada. Indeed, it’s hard to find one voice to speak for the whole of Canada, but surely one little general article can be forgiven its silence on the matter.

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