To Our North...............
blueoval at 1SMARTISP.NET
Mon Feb 14 16:38:43 MST 2005
What will Alec Baldwin find in Canada?
February 14, 2005
Some 10,000 to 20,000 Americans, unable to come to terms with the
re-election of President Bush, are believed poised to leave the
United States and become Canadians. Many, of course, will remain
permanently in the poised position, just like Alec Baldwin, who
has apparently been on the tarmac for four years awaiting a plane
to some other country.
But suppose the disaffected 10,000 to 20,000 actually depart. Will
they find happiness? Will they achieve peace of mind north of the
border? No, they won't. Instead they will find the following:
Strange and maddening football games.
For reasons nobody can fathom, Canadian football is played on an
enormous field, with 12 players on a side and only three downs, so
every third play tends to be a punt. Canadian football alone is
said to have driven an estimated 2 million Canadians across the
border to become U.S. citizens. Many believe Bush could not have
won without the disaffected Canadian football vote.
More Canadian music than you can imagine.
Radio stations must play Canadian music at least 35 percent of the
time. Strict rules determine what music is Canadian enough to fill
the quota. Though Celine Dion is Canadian, her hit "My Heart Will
Go On" was insufficiently Canadian, since the lyricist, the
songwriter, and the recording were non-Canadian. As a result,
thoroughly Canadian pop music stays on the radio long enough to
drive many Canadians to distraction, drink, and even Canadian
Except for murder, a rate of violent crime as disgraceful as that
of the United States.
Many U.S. newspapers salute Canada for its low crime rate. But
according to the International Crime Victimization Survey, the
rate of certain "contact" crimes (robbery, sexual assault, and
assault with force) is over 1.5 times higher in Canada than in the
A national political leader every bit as hard to look at as George
People who detest President Bush's syntax or cocky gait must
consider Prime Minister Paul Martin's disastrous smile. Martin's
speechwriter said the PM's "fake smile leads one to assume that
Martin's foot is being stepped on by an antelope."
Perplexing food decisions.
Never ask a grocer in Canada for "American" cheese or "Canadian"
bacon. Un-Canadian anger may ensue. Also, approach the famous
national dessert, the Canadian butter tart, with extreme caution.
It is made with brown sugar, eggs, flour, vanilla, and lead.
Strong men have been known to eat two at a single sitting, though,
because of the lead content, they are usually unable to move for
several days afterward.
The customary problems of socialized medicine.
A 2000 report from the Heritage Foundation
long waiting lists, government rationing, and substandard care in
Canada's system. Drug spending is controlled, according to the
report, by limiting the number of approved drugs and slowing down
the approval process. In one four-year period, Canada approved
only 24 of 400 new drugs. Keep coming down here for healthcare,
A national infatuation with censorship.
Canadians tend to be a benign people who value niceness. So they
have a strong tendency to suppress speech that they see as lacking
in niceness. Un-nice books and videos are seized at the border or
banned from libraries. Any material cited for "undue exploitation
of sex" or for being "degrading or dehumanizing" can be banned.
Speech is illegal if it "promotes hatred" or spreads "false news."
Advertising "directed at children" can be ruled illegal. If the
recorded message on your answering machine is deemed
discriminatory, you can be prosecuted for it. In Saskatchewan, a
newspaper ad listing four biblical citations against homosexuality
(just the listing, no text), accompanied by two hand-holding male
stick figures with a line drawn across them, was ruled a
human-rights offense, and the man who placed the ad was directed
to pay $1,800 each to three gay men who were offended by the ad.
"Canadians put up with an insane amount of crap that Americans
might not," said David Sutherland, former director of the British
Columbia Civil Liberties Association.
Canada's trying to be European.
Canada has been aping trends in Europe, from the obsession with
multiculturalism, the rising contempt for religion, greater
censorship, and even a declining birthrate. Canada's birthrate is
1.49 children per woman, well below the replacement level of 2.1.
Canada's elites behave much like those of the United States,
favoring judicially imposed decisions over democratic and
legislative ones. In Canada, a smaller and less varied nation than
the United States, the elites meet less resistance. But there are
signs of a pushback. Though the Canadian and American press
consistently give the impression that gay marriage is
overwhelmingly favored in Canada, a February 2 National
Post/Global National poll found that two thirds of Canadians
oppose gay marriage and would likely vote against it in a national
plebiscite. The polls suggest that Canadians are close to
Americans on this issue. It's elite opinion and judges that make
Canada look different.
©2005 Universal Press Syndicate
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