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Canada: An introduction for American conservatives

The American Conservative: Mark Wegierski: 'Canadians appear to be characterized both today and in their earlier history by an unusual deference to governmental authority. Before 1965, Canada probably was a substantively more conservative society than the United States (in the better sense of conservatism), but now, when the paradigm at the top has been fundamentally altered—in the wake of the Pierre “Trudeau revolution”—most Canadians are manifestly willing to follow the new, politically correct line from Ottawa. There is virtually no heritage of independence, self-reliance, or belief in rambunctious free speech in Canada. Indeed, many Canadian officials and citizens point proudly to their aggressive and sweeping laws restricting freedom of expression under often too broadly defined “hate speech” laws as being highly necessary. They often say they do not have “the American hang-ups” about restricting freedom of speech.

'What may be said in Canada’s favor is that it is still a comparatively law-abiding and peaceful society, with a far more pleasant quality of life in Canadian large cities than is so in America’s cities. The medical system, however imperfect, helps Canadians avoid the catastrophic personal medical costs frequently incurred in the U.S. However, Canada is changing in certain ways. For example, the laws are enforced in increasingly asymmetrical ways, especially as regards protests, based on the “victim status” of the perpetrators.

'It could be concluded from the combination of points above that right-of-center positions are rarely seen or heard in Canada (except perhaps in the Western Canadian provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan, as well as in the ambiguous case of the now mostly secular, French-speaking, Quebec nationalism, which, after the 1960s, has been frequently characterized by a powerful separatist movement). Left-liberals predominate in the Canadian media (especially in the taxpayer-funded CBC—the “BBC of Canada”—yet better described as a TV and radio version of NPR/PBS with the reach of America’s mainstream news networks). Left-liberals also predominate in the education system (from daycare to universities), in the judiciary and justice system, in the government bureaucracies, in so-called high culture (typified by government-subsidized “CanLit”), in North American pop-culture and “youth culture,” in the big Canadian banks and corporations, and (on most issues) in the leaderships of the main churches in Canada. The result is that any existing remaining right-of-center tendencies are being continually ground down. There is also the panoply of special-interest groups, who receive extensive government and corporate funding. The social, political, and cultural situation of conservatives in Canada is desperate indeed...

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1 Comment

Mar 01

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