Saturday, August 19, 2006

Go North, Young Man

I wrote this before the United States went crazy. I don't believe it's true any longer that USAyans are freer than Canadians. Still, I thought I'd put this back on the Web.

Go North, Young Man

A few years ago, professional historians were asked to rank the various U. S. Presidents. The relatively high rank of James Polk surprised me. I figured that his advocacy of territorial expansion and his war with Mexico would have doomed him in the eyes of the liberal academy, but a significant number of historians must think like I do. I believe that the taking of California and New Mexico by conquest was a correct action for the United States: It helped ensure that no continental power would ever arise to challenge it. It increased the wealth of the nation. And it improved the lives of the people living in the conquered territories. In the spirit of the great Polk; therefore, I propose that the United States conquer Canada.

In a liberal democracy, the temptation to spend public money on social welfare rather than on national defense is always present--a temptation to which Canada yielded. During the 1970s, it mostly disarmed. Pierre Trudeau, then Prime Minister, correctly reasoned that the United States would never allow a foreign power to invade Canada. He never considered, however, that the occupying power might be the United States itself. Spending a pitiful two- percent of its gross domestic product on national defense, Canada is a fat plum ripe for the picking.

A surprise invasion using the National Guard units from the bordering states backed by the Air Force and Navy would probably result in a nearly bloodless conquest. The border between the nations is undefended, and Canada has gone a long way toward disarming her populace as well as her military. Handguns, for all practical purposes, have been made illegal, and the bureaucratic hoop jumping needed for the possession of long guns has made many citizens give them up. A coordinated attack would leave the U. S. in charge of every major city and most means of communication within twenty-four hours.

But why would the United States want Canada? (Its vast natural resources are obvious and boring. I will mention them in passing and move on.) One, Canadian women are, on average, better looking than U. S. women. Admittedly, this is subjective, but having been to Canada many times, I assure my brethren this is true. Two, Canadians, again on average, are better educated, although the gap has been closing in recent years as the quality of Canadian education declines. Since its unemployment rate is considerably higher than that of the U. S., an immediate supply of educated workers would be made available.

Three, most important of all, Canadians have superior snack food. Until the last two decades or so, the Canadian idea of cooking was to throw something in a pan and fry it, but Canadian snacks put those of the U. S. to shame. I doubt that the average American even knows what a butter tart is. It’s a diabetic coma and myocardial infarction cradled in a miniature piecrust. My mouth is watering just thinking about it. And summer sausage, Americans think a summer sausage is a tube of mushy meat. We are clueless. Properly aged, summer sausage if one of the great carnivorous delights of all time.

Have you ever had a salt and vinegar potato chip? I’ve started seeing them in the U. S., but the Canadians were way ahead of us on these. And let me tell you, Canadian chocolate makes American chocolate look pitiful. Give yourself a Pepsi-style challenge between a Smartie and an M & M; you will understand. Then eat a Coffee Crisp bar. Aero bars are another delight.

So it is apparent that the U. S. would benefit from an annexation of Canada, but to make the invasion moral, it needs to be a net benefit to Canada as well. Understand that I love Canada. Most of my family was born there. Until my siblings started having children, my brother and I were the only ones in our extended family who weren’t. But I’m sad to report that Canadians have been turning themselves into serfs more rapidly that even Americans. I’ve already mentioned that they have disarmed the citizenry. They also control the press to an extent that would be intolerable in the U. S. John Minnery’s remarkable How to Kill series is banned there, for example.

Furthermore, in the name of ending wage inequality between the sexes, Canada instituted a complex system of wage controls wherein the government sets the pay rates for various jobs. I’m not qualified to estimate the damage this has done to their economy, but common sense tells one that it must be immense. Their welfare state is in danger of destroying them. Their unemployment insurance is too generous. Their health care system is on the verge of collapse. Canadians have to wait weeks for tests, such as CAT scans, that Americans get immediately. They need our help.

It is apparent that an immediate conquest of Canada by the United States could easily be done and would benefit both nations, but would a Canadian resistance trouble the U. S.? I’m inclined to doubt it. Culturally, though they don’t want to admit it, non-French Canadians are ninety-five-percent identical to Americans. Whenever I hear a Canadian official ranting about the “unique Canadian culture,” I smile. Assimilation will be simple. This is a country that considers a beer commercial to be an act of defiance. I believe that the average Canadian will just shrug and go on with his life. My only concern would be that they might all head for Florida or Southern California.

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