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Feryk
16th July 12, 11:35 AM
An interesting article today about Canada on Bloomberg….

Wire: Bloomberg View (BV) Date: Jul 15 2012 16:30:38
Ruthless Socialism Makes Canada Richer Than U.S.: Stephen Marche


By Stephen Marche
July 16 (Bloomberg) -- On July 1, Canada Day, Canadians
awoke to a startling, if pleasant, piece of news: For the first
time in recent history, the average Canadian is richer than the
average American.
According to data from Environics Analytics WealthScapes
published in the Globe and Mail, the net worth of the average
Canadian household in 2011 was $363,202, while the average
American household’s net worth was $319,970.
A few days later, Canada and the U.S. both released the
latest job figures. Canada’s unemployment rate fell, again, to
7.2 percent, and America’s was a stagnant 8.2 percent. Canada
continues to thrive while the U.S. struggles to find its way out
of an intractable economic crisis and a political sine curve of
hope and despair.
The difference grows starker by the month: The Canadian
system is working; the American system is not. And it’s not just
Canadians who are noticing. As Iceland considers switching to a
currency other than the krona, its leaders’ primary focus of
interest is the loonie -- the Canadian dollar.
As a study recently published in the New York University
Law Review pointed out, national constitutions based on the
American model are quickly disappearing. Justice Ruth Bader
Ginsburg, in an interview on Egyptian television, admitted, “I
would not look to the United States Constitution if I were
drafting a constitution in the year 2012.” The natural
replacement? The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms,
achieving the status of legal superstar as it reaches its 30th
birthday.

Canadian Luck

Good politics do not account entirely for recent economic
triumphs. Luck has played a major part. The Alberta tar sands --
an environmental catastrophe in waiting -- are the third-largest
oil reserves in the world, and if America is too squeamish to
buy our filthy energy, there’s always China. We also have
softwood lumber, potash and other natural resources in
abundance.
Policy has played a significant part as well, though. Both
liberals and conservatives in the U.S. have tried to use the
Canadian example to promote their arguments: The left says
Canada shows the rewards of financial regulation and socialism,
while the right likes to vaunt the brutal cuts made to Canadian
social programs in the 1990s, which set the stage for economic
recovery.
The truth is that both sides are right. Since the 1990s,
Canada has pursued a hardheaded (even ruthless), fiscally
conservative form of socialism. Its originator was Paul Martin,
who was finance minister for most of the ’90s, and served a
stint as prime minister from 2003 to 2006. Alone among finance
ministers in the Group of Eight nations, he “resisted the siren
call of deregulation,” in his words, and insisted that the banks
tighten their loan-loss and reserve requirements. He also made a
courageous decision not to allow Canadian banks to merge, even
though their chief executives claimed they would never be
globally competitive unless they did. The stability of Canadian
banks and the concomitant stability in the housing market
provide the clearest explanation for why Canadians are richer
than Americans today.
Martin also slashed funding to social programs. He foresaw
that crippling deficits imperiled Canada’s education and health-
care systems, which even his Conservative predecessor, Brian
Mulroney, described as a “sacred trust.” He cut corporate taxes,
too. Growth is required to pay for social programs, and social
programs that increase opportunity and social integration are
the best way to ensure growth over the long term. Social
programs and robust capitalism are not, as so many would have
you believe, inherently opposed propositions. Both are required
for meaningful national prosperity.

Orderly Fairness

Martin’s balanced policies emerged organically out of
Canadian culture, which is fair-minded and rule-following to a
fault. The Canadian obsession with order can make for strange
politics, at least in an American context. For example, of all
the world’s societies, Canada’s is one of the most open to
immigrants, as anyone who has been to Toronto or Vancouver will
have seen. Yet Canada also imposes a mandatory one-year prison
sentence on illegal immigrants, and the majority of Canadians
favor deportation. Canadians insist that their compassion be
orderly, too.
This immigration policy is neither “liberal” nor
“conservative” in the American political sense. It just works.
You could say exactly the same thing about Canada’s economic
policies.
Canada has been, and always will be, overshadowed by its
neighbor, by America’s vastness and its incredible versatility
and capacity for reinvention. But occasionally, at key moments,
the northern wasteland can surprise. Two hundred years ago last
month, the War of 1812 began. Thomas Jefferson declared, “The
acquisition of Canada, this year, as far as the neighborhood of
Quebec, will be a mere matter of marching.” The U.S. was
comparatively enormous -- with almost 8 million people, compared
with Canada’s 300,000. The Canadians nonetheless turned back the
assault.
Through good luck, excellent policy and even some heroism,
Canada survived the war. But it has taken 200 years for Canada
to become winners.

(Stephen Marche is a novelist and columnist for Esquire
Magazine. His most recent book is “How Shakespeare Changed
Everything.” The opinions expressed are his own.)

For Related News and Information:
For more Bloomberg View: VIEW <GO>
For more on the Canadian economy: NI CAECO <GO>

--Editors: Mary Duenwald, David Henry

Dr. Socially Liberal Fiscally Conservative Vermin
16th July 12, 12:26 PM
Errr it was the British who saved your arses in the 1812 war.

Feryk
17th July 12, 12:08 PM
Yes it was. The important bit was the first couple of paragraphs. The rest is just ranting. Canadians love to claim credit for what was essentially a British/French victory.


Oh, and NoB? Good show, you have 8.5x more GDP than us --- with 10x the people. Awesome considering that Canadians have awful worker productivity.

Spade: The Real Snake
17th July 12, 12:39 PM
quit sending you fucking old pensioners here driving down our net worth average and sucking up all our social services.

Feryk
17th July 12, 12:44 PM
You mean the social services they pay for?

Hell, if we did as you asked, Florida would declare bankruptcy tomorrow.

Arizona too, btw.

You need our monopoly money right now, Snake. Admit it.

Spade: The Real Snake
17th July 12, 12:46 PM
what social services do they "pay for"?

they don't register their vehicles here, they don't pay property tax and they don't pay income tax.

other than sales tax, they take more than they give.

Feryk
17th July 12, 02:01 PM
You are comparing yourself to emerging economies and you think this makes you awesome?!?

America is BY FAR the largest developed economy. And the largest population base amongst developed nations.

And you are not productive enough. By far. If you want to 'stay on top' you will have to face reality NoB.

Feryk
17th July 12, 02:50 PM
what social services do they "pay for"?

they don't register their vehicles here, they don't pay property tax and they don't pay income tax.

other than sales tax, they take more than they give.

Apparently you are taking something hallucingenic. Expats pay MORE property tax (though it's called something different) than locals. If they are dumb enough to finance through aUS bank, they pay a far higher interest rate as well. If they drive the vehicle they use/own in Canada OF COURSE they wouldn't register their vehicle in Arizona.

Most, however, buy something to drive down there. They get US drivers licenses and they register those second vehicles in the state they live. Not uncommon, especially if they declare Non Residency in Canada.

Oh, and btw, there is a tax treaty between our two countries. It means someone claiming dual residency has to file in both countries. They only pay tax once, but that revenue is split between the two jurisdictions. This sometimes leads to problems as not every state recognizes the tax exempt status of our RRSPs (like your 401K plans), so they sometimes want income taxes they are not entitled to.

Sorry to burst your bubble, xenophobe. You got it wrong.

Spade: The Real Snake
17th July 12, 03:25 PM
They squat in the desert in their RVs paying NO rent or property taxes

Feryk
17th July 12, 03:39 PM
Oh. THOSE people.

I thought you meant the ones with enough money to buy a house. Hell, these days it's not like they are expensive where you are.

resolve
17th July 12, 03:54 PM
Oh. THOSE people.

I thought you meant the ones with enough money to buy a house. Hell, these days it's not like they are expensive where you are.

Ouch. Truth hurts bro.

Spade: The Real Snake
17th July 12, 03:57 PM
Oh. THOSE people.

I thought you meant the ones with enough money to buy a house. Hell, these days it's not like they are expensive where you are.
Too expensive for your garden-variety Canucklestanian pensioner......

Feryk
17th July 12, 04:43 PM
True story time:

I work in an industry where some of our people make truly obscene amounts of money. One of our highest producers in 2007 bought himself a retirement property in some 'burb in Phoenix (Scottsdale?). This guy has income in the $500K+ range.

He passes around photos of his new baby and gives a presentation on the value of hard work and how, one day, if we worked hard and were lucky, we might be able to have one of these for our very own.

At the time, our dollar was .68 USD. He paid $500K US for his house, so after everything, he spent about $800K CDN on this place (it's an adult 3 bedroom condo).

Flash forward three years. We are having another meeting. A bunch of us were discussing the folly of Larry's condo. OOC, we pulled up real estate listings in the area he bought it in, and sure enough, there were a ton in the same complex for sale. At the time, the same thing he bought was going for $250USD, and the Canadian dollar hit parity.

A certain someone (me) printed copies of the multiple real estate listings and passed them around before the meeting. Larry arrived a few minutes later and asked what we were talking about.

We showed him the listings. "A few of us were looking at these. At these prices, we could afford to be your neighbor!"

Larry started to turn purple, but said nothing. I asked for a show of hands, who was interested in buying condos in the same complex. We had a dozen hands.

Larry, continuing to look like a heart attack in progress, blustered 'You cannot buy unless you have a referral from a current tenant!'

The next day, we all emailed him asking for a recommendation to the condo board.

He told us all to fuck off. It was gold. And yes, we are assholes.

Feryk
17th July 12, 05:07 PM
Nah. The funniest bit is that he retired last year, had a heart attack, and is now too sick to travel.

He'll never see that place in Phoenix again.

Or maybe that's the saddest bit.

Spade: The Real Snake
17th July 12, 05:41 PM
Jesus saves.

Adouglasmhor
17th July 12, 05:42 PM
Jesus saves.

But Daglish gets the rebound.

Spade: The Real Snake
17th July 12, 05:44 PM
then I guess Scotland can have all the Canuckles.

Spade: The Real Snake
18th July 12, 10:52 AM
Mexico is #10 on that first list.

More tourists would rather visit a country in which they might be decapitated than visit Canucklestan.

Feryk
18th July 12, 03:48 PM
That's because their dollars don't go as far up here anymore.

Well, and that we are cold as fuck for 8 months of the year.

Spade: The Real Snake
18th July 12, 03:49 PM
"So whattya wanna go do, today? Go watch moose fuck, go watch beavers fuck or go watch Canada geese fuck?"

Feryk
18th July 12, 03:51 PM
The beavers are kinky little fuckers, but they don't like an audience. It's why they build the big dams.

Vieux Normand
18th July 12, 03:57 PM
The beavers are kinky little fuckers, but they don't like an audience. It's why they build the big dams...

...with their teeth. Canadians (bless their little rodent souls) refer to these as "dental dams".

Feryk
19th July 12, 04:35 PM
Be afraid of what we call 'diaphragms'.