Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Radicalism and Canada

I am not a radical Canadian.  I’m pro Canada.  I was born here. I know Canada intimately. I’ve lived in various provinces and cities in Canada. I’ve lived and worked in wilderness, rural, suburban,  urban and inner urban areas of Canada.  I find more and more Canadians are urbanites whose knowledge of other areas of Canada are less than tourists.  Especially talking to activists and doom sayers I am astonished at their ignorance of the resources and wilderness of Canada.  When people talk of reservations I’m mostly aware that they’ve never been on one let alone the dozens I’ve been to.  When someone from Quebec talks about western Canada commonly their knowledge is less than Germans or Americans.  I’ve been to Quebec often. I’ve not worked there but I’ve spent weeks at a time in their cities and province.  Most Torontonians know nothing of Ontario let alone Manitoba.  Yet we all talk with ‘authority’ as Canadians.
I can honestly say that I don’t know any ‘radical’ Canadians.  The most radical Canadianism I know is the fellow who insists he’s not American.  I’ve lived in America as well as Canada and Britain so I’m not so sure I’d quickly judge these other countries in this way. Usually Canadians who speak like this are referring to the propaganda media representation of other countries. Canada is a country of misinformation and propaganda but I'm not so sure it isn't better than most countries where the governments are even more ignorant than Canada's is arrogant.
An American, in Colorado, on seeing my Harley Davidson license commented, “Canada, that’s north of us. Mexico is south, right?”  I answered yes, knowing that many people in Richmond wouldn’t know where Nanaimo or Squamish were or if Saskatchewan or Manitoba was further than Alberta.  We’re an ignorant people collectively in Canada.  There are always smart and stupid people but education beyond college isn’t rated as important as it is in Europe. I was astonished at travelling in Europe how admired education was for the knowledge not the money. Here a degree is equated in how much it can pay for a job.
I liked that in the US in a lot of places people who weren’t certified for a particular position simply weren’t allowed to do that. Here in British Columbia it’s attractiveness is that it’s the last place for the rise of the generalist.  The handy man can get the top specialist position.  Generalists and specialists are only differentiated by finance.  Standards aren’t that important.  Our construction industry is only better than Quebec's which is considered one of the worst and most corrupt in the world.
 Our education system charges a fortune for degrees but does little politically to ensure that those who don’t have a degree aren’t able to have the position because of what they know sexually or whose son or brother they are. One gets a degree in Canada only to find that the best jobs are already taken by those without degrees who knew someone or had some sexual or financial pull.
Corruption is a universal problem and while I’m critical of corruption here  in Canada ,my immigrant and refugee friends tell me that their countries make Canada look pristine by comparison.  By world standards the corruption of Quebec is probably mediocre.  My political science friend says that Canada as a country has ‘institutionalized baksheesh”.  Baksheesh is a bribe or a personal tax.  Canada is collectively taxed to dying while in other countries there are hands that need to be greased to get from one room to the next till you’re actually at the person who does the matter you have enquired about having done.Business is personal. It's more likely to get you killed in Mexico than it is in Canada for sure.
Increasingly Canada makes rules for companies and individuals behaviour overseas.  I can only believe these people are ‘wanting some of the action’ without actually knowing anything about other countries. Usually they have lived their lives a yuppies in some big Canadian city, usually Toronto or Montreal.
I’ve never been to Newfoundland.  I regret that.  The day I was to go, the ferry was cancelled because of storms so I never got there and travelled south to Boston instead.  One of the cross country road trips I took enjoying visiting the amazing variety that is Canada.  I truly love the geography and vegetation of Canada, the people, despite the homogenization of the people.  While the cities increasingly lack diversity, the land will never lose its appeal.  Tundras of the north, the Atlantic and Pacific, the great lakes, the Laurentians, the Rockies, the beaches of Vancouver, the wheat fields, and all the other cliches of Canada.  I love the land.
That’s what so many others want. They want our land and resources. They don’t want our culture. They don’t want our government. They don’t want our history. They’re like the first white men who came to Canada in the 1500’s. They wanted fish and furs.  Now the yellow men come and they want our Vancouver land for their houses.  The brown men want the place for their businesses only because our police have historically kept our businesses safe.  The blacks like to come here to get away from the violence where they were and to get into the trade we have here. No one wants Canadian Culture.
They do want ‘free health care’.
I’m a doctor and I have had ‘wage controls’ on my income for 30 years.  Doctors can't afford to buy houses in Canada because the "creepy" real estate moguls won't accept 'controls' except on doctor income. Everyone knows that health care , with the doctor and nurse wage slaves and rich fact administration, is what makes Canada most desirable.
I do a considerable amount of actual ‘pro bono’ work.  It’s had me condemned in the media, especially the pro dope trade Vancouver Sun yellow journalists,  because I’ve taken on those rejected marginal people who the courts and media  scandalize and shame along with me. I’ve defended these underdogs in my belief in ‘fairness’ and ‘justice’  and  “universal health care’.  I am shocked that in Bahrain doctors are jailed for treated patients.  In Muslim countries doctors are told they are only to treat the ‘right sort of people’.  This is tyranny.  In Canada may be a two tier system of care.  The rich often get what the poor cannot access.  Hence the rich go to Edgewood Treatment Centre like Betty Ford Clinic for addiction whereas the poor are given needle exchange and told to inject in the Insite drug pub where nurse waitresses will ensure they are cut off before they overdose.  Thanks to doctors and nurses accepting low hourly incomes and long hours and poor support the system works despite the increasing burden of interfering administration.
But I’m not a radical Canadian.  I’m just a Canadian.  We don’t really believe in radical anything here except maybe radical hockey, radical ideas, like love and quantum physics, string theory and multiverse.  We have heros who are scientists like Colonel Hadfield and also love our singers like Bruce Coburn and Laura McLaughland.  We give the Order of Canada to Dr. Jack Hildes for his work establishing Circumpolar Health Care as well as to Burton Cummings for his many hit records with the Guess Who.
I’m anxious around radical religion and radical politics and radical feminists and radical abortionist and anyone really who is radical enough to want to kill anyone, especially those who say ‘kill infidels’.  But the fact is I don’t know any radical Canadians.  I am not a radical Canadian and I don’t know radical Canadians.
 I do know the most amazing creative and ingenious Canadians.  I know Canadians who are loving and kind and yet would kill you in a second in self defence. I hate that the courts are so biased to the politically correct and serve primarily the rich and elite but otherwise they're not particularly onerous.  I have so many Canadian friends in the sciences, arts, military, politics, health care, law,  industry and resources and government and I truly admire them all individually in their work and home lives.  There’s incredible diversity in my friendship network and that concerns me because so many of my friends many of whom are elderly , young, Christian, Jewish, anti abortion, LGBT, writers, artists, performers, physicians, lawyers would be persecuted, arrested or killed living in so many of the nations of the world.  Half my friends would likely be arrested in Communist countries though I have several card carrying Communist friends.  Half my sexually diverse friends would be killed in most Muslim countries and almost all of Africa.  My Jewish friends would be persecuted in half the world. My Christian friends would be persecuted in China and countless other countries.  I am certain most of my writer friends, especially the poets would be arrested in most countries. The scientists would be made to work directly for the governments because they’re that good.  My business friends would likely do okay in their work but not be able to share what they think and feel socially. My political friends would generally be in trouble somewhere.
Canada is a land in which I’ve known freedom.  Increasingly I see this government and the policies of the world attempting to harmonize Canada to a reductionist 'world order'.  They want to reduce it to something radically un Canadian, something politically correct and 'safe'. Too few Canadians realize that 'buzz words' get their 'buzz' from the 'spin'.  What they sound like is the opposite of what they are.  Hence 'politically correct '  is truly politically incorrect.  And 'safe places' are the most unsafe places in the world.  At least 'carbon tax' is true since its just one more tax on a mountain of tax.  Sometimes these things concern me.
I’m not a Radical Canadian.  I don’t want to become one.

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