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It's Like a Bad Meme...

weather: cloudy
outside: 7°C
mood: ...
Some random observations about the US Election from a Canadian:

  1. I've been seeing pro-Kerry and pro-Bush posts side-by-side in my Friends view... which is amusing in and of itself. I also can't click two links on the internet without running face first into elections talk.

    What I find most fascinating though is that the reasonable to above-average intelligent people are most likely Kerry supporters. The very stupidest people are Bush supporters (sit down and have a cup of not-surprise).

    But I've noticed that the very smartest people I know are also Bush supporters. There are exceptions to this, of course, but I thought this was an interesting trend.

  2. I'm not understanding something. I've seen people writing about immigrating to Canada if [whoever] wins.

    1. That means that the party you're supporting gets even less support in the next election and the ones you _didn't_ want in the White House have a higher likelihood of actually being there if you leave. Yes? No?

    2. Canadian politics, economy, etc., etc. are so closely tied to the Americans that whoever comes into power does affect us. And yet, we, Canadians, don't get a vote in the US elections. I'm not frustrated or upset that I couldn't vote today. I'm just noting that, as a matter of fact, I don't get a say in something that could affect me.

      Given the chance, why would you volunteer to walk away and sit idly by to watch whoever it is fuck it all up for everyone (including Canada)? Because, y'know, if WMD are let loose around here, we share the same air and general threespace.

More here.


( 44 comments — Leave a comment )
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Nov. 2nd, 2004 11:46 pm (UTC)
I've never understood the whole 'emigrating to Canada' thing. Especially when people talk about health care- I rather like not having to wait 6 months for a check-up ;). Not that I hate on Canadia, or anything, I just don't think it's the paradise super-liberal Americans make it out to be. The grass is always greener...

I have hope that it'll get better. It still doesn't change the fact I'm going to live abroad for most of my life, but that's for cultural reasons, not political ones. If I ever end up marrying a foreigner, I don't think I could give up my citizenship, it would be a very long, hard decision for me to have to make.
Nov. 2nd, 2004 11:57 pm (UTC)
6 months? Who told you that? I don't wait 6 months for a regular check up... not even PAPs, the Asthma specialist, my Neurologist or anyone else.

My experience is if there's something truly wrong with you and you need something done ASAP, you'll get scheduled in for surgery or whatever procedure the following day.
(no subject) - katie_ah - Nov. 3rd, 2004 12:02 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - johnbot - Nov. 3rd, 2004 11:02 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - bride - Nov. 3rd, 2004 12:20 pm (UTC) - Expand
Nov. 3rd, 2004 12:06 am (UTC)
Sounds like someone's been listening to propaganda about state run health care. I can walk in to a clinic and see a doctor for nothing at any time should it be needed (keeping in mind a "clinic" in Canada is like a 7-11 of health care, not necessarily an overworked doctor in a shabby office in a slum like you might think of them in the US) or I can call up my family doctor and make an appointment for later in the day or week depending on how desperate I am to see them. Often they will have a couple floating spots for emergency dropins, and if they're taken, they'll advise you to pop into a walk-in clinic.

Universal health care isn't the communist style care system - the Canadian model covers the very basics. Without added coverage, you need to pay for your meds (though that's cheaper than in the US for the same drugs thanks to better drug laws) and you need to pay for things like dental work (though rates there are pretty low too comparatively). It's nice to not have to do a credit check in order to have your finger stitched up, etc.

Nov. 3rd, 2004 08:42 am (UTC)
Yeah, someone's spewing shit about our healthcare system. I've had to explain this a few times now.
(no subject) - xinit - Nov. 3rd, 2004 09:20 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - johnbot - Nov. 3rd, 2004 11:03 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - katie_ah - Nov. 3rd, 2004 10:25 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - bride - Nov. 3rd, 2004 10:46 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - spooke - Nov. 7th, 2004 10:14 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - bride - Nov. 8th, 2004 08:50 am (UTC) - Expand
(Deleted comment)
Nov. 3rd, 2004 11:42 am (UTC)
But the very intelligent also take a macroscopic view of the history, the enemy that is Islamic extremism, and have a keen understanding of the fragility of the infrastructure upon which American civilization rests, and the calculus of freedom vs. security.

Yes, that's exactly it.
Nov. 3rd, 2004 12:12 am (UTC)
This is why I've been trying to be so careful, honestly listening to the reasons that educated people give for choosing to vote for Bush. There are a lot of well-educated, intelligent people whom I respect, who supported Bush over Kerry. And I have heard a number of persuasive reasons.

I like to believe that on the whole, human beings are pretty intelligent and rational, and that any time you get a very large number of people to agree on something, there is some kernel of important truth within the belief. The question is how the logic builds around that truth, and then understanding that becomes the key to figuring out where reconciliation between the two ideas can come about.
Nov. 3rd, 2004 12:18 am (UTC)
Who the hell am I kidding, though? While I understand the intelligent reasons to favor Bush over Kerry, I do still favor Kerry, for my own reasons, which I'd like to believe were also intelligent and rational.
(no subject) - tinyflamingo - Nov. 4th, 2004 12:37 pm (UTC) - Expand
Nov. 3rd, 2004 12:17 am (UTC)
Let me take a stab at #2, as we've been toying with the emigration meme ourselves tonight.

It seems pretty clear that the decisive factor in this election was "values," or, as it's sometimes expressed, "God, Guns & Gays." Aside from New England and the Pacific Coast, this country is very socially conservative and getting more so.

A Bush victory under these circumstances makes it likely that the *next* Republican candidate will be deeply tied to the religious right, as it's a winning formula.

It's likely that the bulk of the country will be getting more conservative, and with conservatives in control of all three branches of the government, things will get pretty chilly for the rest of us, and that control gives them the ability to consolidate their power for a long time to come.

So what's a dissident to do? Move to the coasts and fight a rearguard action, or move to someplace congenial that won't be under Federal and national-majority pressure. Those are the chocies... Pick according to temperament.
(Deleted comment)
(no subject) - johnbot - Nov. 3rd, 2004 11:08 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - leora - Nov. 3rd, 2004 02:11 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - bride - Nov. 3rd, 2004 12:07 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - kaseido - Nov. 3rd, 2004 12:37 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - bride - Nov. 3rd, 2004 12:39 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - kaseido - Nov. 3rd, 2004 12:57 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - bride - Nov. 3rd, 2004 01:04 pm (UTC) - Expand
Nov. 3rd, 2004 12:25 am (UTC)
Which is why, despite China being a communist country, it's better to be here right now =D
I think Bush is going to win. It really would take a miracle for Kerry to pull this one out right now. But... oh well. Clinton '08? *waves flag*

Thing is, I've been debating going back to the U.S. to study law... and right now, I don't know if it's safer there (where, if Bush declares war on the world, at least we have the 'best' on our side), or whether we'd just be sitting ducks because everyone will soon want a piece of us. =(

America USED to have a reputation of being loud... rather overbearing, but generally well-meaning. Nowadays, the international community seems to be wondering when the U.S. will turn on them, and whether it's possible to invent a leash that could contain 'em.
(Deleted comment)
Nov. 3rd, 2004 01:27 am (UTC)
Well, strictly speaking...
... I'm in Hong Kong, so it's still safe to do that ;)

9/11 proved that it doesn't matter how big a budget the U.S. has, there's still plenty of holes in which terrorists (or otherwise) can get through. This belligerent "get them before they get us" behavior is only going to make more people want to take the U.S. down a peg.
Nov. 3rd, 2004 02:05 am (UTC)
Whichever party wins, the other will likely change drastically. The party that loses may effectively die. The platforms will change. They will give up on several key issues because they will see it doesn't work.

If we get enough brain power in Canada, maybe we can make it more powerful than the US. Maybe we can whip the US into shape with external forces, because internal ones aren't working.

I like having civil liberties. I'd like to live somewhere that has some.

If you pay taxes in the US, you support US policies. You give the US power. You are complicit with US actions. Only by moving, becoming a citizen elsewhere, and supporting their economy can you boycott the evil that the US is doing.

If enough do this, the US loses the power to mess up the world.
Nov. 3rd, 2004 08:44 am (UTC)
Very well put! For some, the actions they'll take in staying and fighting will counterbalance the support they give by staying and paying. For others, not.

We're not going anywhere soon - though fleeing back to a blue state has *definitely* moved up the timetable.

But we'll be joining a bunch of civil-rights organizations even before the dust clears. We can't count on leaders anymore; it's down to us.
Nov. 3rd, 2004 04:58 am (UTC)
If I move to Canada because of this shameful election, I will not give up my U.S. citizenship and will still vote in 2008.

I don't know if I can move to Canada and get a job though. So I might just have to stay here and suffer.
Nov. 3rd, 2004 11:12 am (UTC)
The US doesn't like its citizens holding citizenship elsewhere, so if you moved you may not be able to keep it.

That said, if you think you can just fly over and become a Canadian citizen, or even get into the country that easily, you're probably in for a shock. It's not a walk in the park by any stretch.
(no subject) - jidabug - Nov. 4th, 2004 10:47 am (UTC) - Expand
Nov. 3rd, 2004 05:55 am (UTC)
I've chuckled at the moving to Canada joke myself. And I thought a little about it during the weeks before this election, as I have been fairly sure that Bush would win, and still think he will win. But I know I couldn't do it, for the exact reasons you list above.

I really do believe Bush will take things in the wrong direction, and that affects more than the US. Running away doesn't solve anything, it just means you are affected in a different way.

Of course, it's sort of easy for me to stay put as I live in a very liberal area where it's easy to get involved in things that will amplify my voice.
Nov. 3rd, 2004 06:13 am (UTC)
oh, hey.
haha, I guess that means yu don't think I'm among the very smartest. Now I know what you think! ;)
Nov. 3rd, 2004 08:30 am (UTC)
Re: oh, hey.
Hey, I said "there are exceptions" =D
Nov. 3rd, 2004 08:04 am (UTC)
Screw Canada. I'm moving to Australia!

Nov. 3rd, 2004 10:52 am (UTC)
About moving to Canada, I woul consider applying to UBC, Simon Fraser, and maybe a few other BC schools while still retaining my American citizenship (unless we re-instate the draft…). That way I would be able to vote absintee in the 2008 election, and other local elections (we can still win back Congress!) while not actually living in the same country as George Bush.
Nov. 3rd, 2004 07:30 pm (UTC)
David and I have sincerely looked into moving to Canada - either Vancouver or Toronto. And this was way before Bush was elected in 2000. . .

Nov. 4th, 2004 07:04 pm (UTC)
"That means that the party you're supporting gets even less support in the next election and the ones you _didn't_ want in the White House have a higher likelihood of actually being there if you leave. Yes? No?"

Yes - I've tried to point this out to people who don't seem to remember that artists, academics and other progressive people FLED countries like Iran and that often all that's left is a conservative society. I've told people before that the only reason California/Seattle is so progressive/liberal compared to places like Texas is because everybody who was progressive or liberal MOVED there and AWAY from otehr areas.

But then, I can't blame them. People flee a sinking ship. Country or city. Small town or village. It doesn't matter. Refuees come from places where they see no hope, and no future. Places where they've felt that they've long been sliding down a slope towards the bottom.

Many Americans feel like we're in the midst of a social war, with religious conservatives on one end and progressive/iberal on the other. The religious conservatives are winning, and that's a big deal to people whose lives are affected by that social atmosphere. There are also those Americans who feel that we're just taking the slow train behind the Soviet Union in our fall from grace at the top of the world. Who wants to stick around if you know it's hopeless, and the future awaits elsewhere?

"Given the chance, why would you volunteer to walk away and sit idly by to watch whoever it is fuck it all up for everyone (including Canada)?"

Well, I don't think we're at this point yet - but I would walk away (and everybody else be damned) before the Iron curtain came down, the Ayatolah came to power, or Shariah law was instituted, had it been another time or place. There are Americans (particularly GLBT americans whose lives are the stuff of negative legislation despite years of social change and the devestation of AIDS during the 80's) who feel they *are* at that point already. I can't blame them.
Nov. 4th, 2004 11:07 pm (UTC)
but I would walk away (and everybody else be damned) before the Iron curtain came down, the Ayatolah came to power, or Shariah law was instituted, had it been another time or place.

I hear ya. My parents (and I think your parents) did just that.
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