On departing the U.S. (simulcast at contentgoeshere.com)

Since a lot of my Internet-linked friends and acquaintances are either liberals, libertarians, or leftists I have heard a lot lately about leaving the U.S. because of disgust with or fear of the current government and their policies.

Let’s talk sense about this.

  1. You can’t just “move to Canada” or Sweden or France or the U.K. or anywhere, really. Unless you’re independently wealthy and/or retired it just doesn’t work that way. You have to go through an immigration process and it’s long and painful. It can easily take years for even an experienced professional with a job offer to get through the thicket of bureaucracy that any well-run country erects for immigrants.
  2. You can’t run from Imperial America. Canada is an especially laughable choice here; when we sneeze, they get a cold. The long arm of U.S. power extends to every place in the world, certainly to every place you could stand living. Go up there and watch things get worse here if you want. At some point an apologetic Mountie will arrive to explain that you’re being deported back because of a joint security agreement.
  3. Foreign countries, surprisingly, are different. The peculiar luxuries, freedoms, and opportunities of our country will not be present there. Things cost a lot more, the weather is different, and the justice system may shock you. If you’re not already an experienced traveler who enjoys surprises and strangeness, it’s entirely possible you’ll hate everywhere but home.
  4. Cowardice is not rewarded, either in respect or in results. Stay and fight for what you believe. Whether you are a libertarian who despises Ashcroft’s new police state, a liberal who rejects warmongering and theocracy, or a core leftist despairing at corporate America, there is work to be done here. Defeatism is a self-fulfilling apocalypse.

In sum, don’t leave unless you have another good reason to do so and a plan for achieving it. The wealth and privilege and freedoms you have as your birthright carry with them the obligation to serve your country in its time of need. Be a citizen first for a change. If you leave here, your new home will demand no less of you.

83 thoughts on “On departing the U.S. (simulcast at contentgoeshere.com)

  1. This is so great. I totally understand fear, but you can’t run away from it. I mean, for fear, how about living in Canada, next to insanity, where you are pretty much powerless to do anything about what’s up? At least you in the US can try to effect change.
    You can’t seek asylum unless the country you are running to says “hey, we think you might need asylum, have some”. Otherwise, you’re just trying to become a permanent resident of a real country with its own government, paperwork, and interesting bureaucracies. Remember, it took over 2 years for fimmtiu to just get his permanent resident status, and he could not go to school or work during that whole time. Go check out the Canadian Immigration web page, and try the self-test. If you can get more than 70 points, then think about it. Otherwise, think again. It’s a long expensive process, and unless you have a very compelling reason to do it, it’s just not really practical. We all helped support each other, because we’re a family. I don’t know how one would do it without financial aid.
    I am never averse to people moving here, I wish you all lived near me. I just don’t want you to come here expecting one thing and ending up being deported or broke and destitute instead.

  2. “The peculiar luxuries, freedoms, and opportunities of our country will not be present there. Things cost a lot more, the weather is different, and the justice system may shock you.”
    haha, are you serious here?
    yeah you might be shocked to find out that not only can you cuss on tv, there is no censorship, no death penalty, free healthcare, free education and four seasons.
    not but seriously, of course running away from the problem isn’t the answer. get involved, evolve the democrats, prepare for the next election and learn from mistakes.

    1. Don’t personalize this!
      I wasn’t saying that every country in the world — including yours — has a worse system than ours, don’t be silly!
      But it is true that Americans are often shocked when they discover our justice system isn’t worldwide and that they are presumed guilty rather than innocent in France, for example, or don’t have to be let out of jail within 48 hours if not charged.
      I’m not sure what Americans would hate about Sweden most likely because I haven’t been there. I’m making a general point.

      1. oh i know, i was just generalizing. i think it’s a common american thought to think that their system is so much more ‘free’ and better than the rest of the world. while actually europeans see it directly the other way around; we shake our heads at yours.
        i agree with you completely buddy. look at me, i am leaving the great land of sweden that even bin laden praises, for that doomed land you call home.

    2. “Free” in the sense of “the government sucks fifty or sixty cents of every dollar out of your paycheck before you even see it in order to pay for this,” right…?

      1. Did you intend to actually say something here? I think you must have omitted it.
        Are you claiming that the services (paid for by confiscatory taxes) are in fact “free”, or that they don’t actually tax people in any of those places?
        By the bye, I majored in math. And I’d prefer to be responsible for my own living standard than to buy it back from the government.

      2. well please inform me which countries have a 50-60% tax?
        since you are so against taxes and paying your own bills, enjoy bush.

      3. I expect I’ll enjoy him as little as I’d have enjoyed Kerry. I voted for Badnarik.
        Marginal tax rates, overall, go as high as 70% in places like Belgium and Finland.

  3. OTOH, if you stay in America, your taxes, creativity and economic activity go to feed the BushCo machine. And if you stay to change things, you’ll still be outnumbered by the stupids who have more children.
    Not to mention the very real possibility that, soon enough, Bush’s America may decide that it needs you after all… as cannon fodder.

    1. sure
      I just don’t see the virtue in abandoning my countrymen to that fate and making it worse.
      I can also give my money and creative activity to the opposition.

      1. Re: sure
        You don’t have to abandon anyone; when you’re abroad, you can still vote in the US, keep abreast of the issues, and can still donate money to campaigns. (In fact, if the US$ declines further, your donations from abroad will be worth more.)

      2. Re: sure
        Still have to pay taxes back home. My only win there would be better food, assuming I went to Italy or France.

      3. Re: sure
        Let me get this straight: if you’re a US citizen abroad, even if all your income comes from the country you are in, you have to pay two sets of income tax (local and US) on it, just because you’re a US citizen?
        That doesn’t happen to any other nationality; I’m an Australian citizen in the UK, and won’t have to pay Australian taxes on my UK income.

      4. Re: sure
        apparently not, according to what Elaine is saying.
        I still personally feel it’s my duty to stay. This is the most powerful country in the world, and leaving the worst in charge of it and walking away seems both suicidal and immoral.

      5. Walking away
        Is it absolutely immoral, or does it depend on the circumstances? In some conditions, if one’s country was too far gone, would fleeing for abroad become morally justifiable?
        I imagine that a lot of Jews in 1930s Germany made similar arguments against abandoning their cosmopolitan, vibrant homeland to Hitler and his thugs, and paid grieviously for it. I’m not saying that America is at this stage, though if things get too bad to stay on, will you know sufficiently well in advance to get out while you still can?

      6. Re: Walking away
        I don’t know yet. It’s not 1933 yet, though. I don’t see the President’s private army roughing up opposition politicians, much less building concentration camps.
        And if we must ring the Godwin gong (it was inevitable), all those people who keep talking about moving to Canada should remember how happy and relieved people were to get out of Germany into a nice safe Czech or Polish town. Whew! He’ll never find us here! DING DONG PANZERS.
        Really, though, I think it’s an insult to the terrible suffering of those times to compare the current election’s result to 1930s Germany.

      7. Re: Walking away
        Firstly, Godwin’s law doesn’t mean “thou shalt not refer to the Third Reich as a metaphor”. And comparing the polarised, intolerant, anti-liberal, post-Patriot Act mood in Bush’s America to Germany around the rise of Hitler is not the same as comparing it to the Holocaust.
        Secondly, those Jews who fled to America, or Argentina or Britain or South Africa, lived. (Those who fled to Poland or Czechoslovakia early on would have had a chance of moving to higher ground from there, which was more than those who stayed behind did.)
        Though to keep the metaphor valid, it’s not just the Jews we should be talking about here, but liberal-minded Germans; the numerous artists and architects and playwrights and intellectuals and homosexuals and freethinkers and cosmopolitanists, or in short the liberals, to whom Hitler’s new, monoculturally primitivist Germany said “you do not belong here”. (Which, incidentally, is why America got such an influx of talented film directors and such around that time.) The Bush team has not singled out any group for extermination (though they do like to whale on the gays a bit), though it has sent an unambiguous message to America’s liberals: “you do not belong in our America”. And it looks like, in today’s polarised America, this message has majority support.

      8. Re: Walking away
        I think we should probably stop this thread, since it’s getting dangerously close to a fight between people who agree on almost everything, which is dumb.
        I still maintain that it’s not too late, that things change, and that there is a lot of hope for a better America. And I will still stay. I think it’s important to do so and that things have not gotten anywhere near 1933, with the possible exception of GLBT folks whom I would not blame at all for leaving.
        You’ve made a lot of damned good points but at this point I think I’ll have to agree to disagree.

      9. Re: sure
        What do you mean when you say that America is “the most powerful country in the world”? I’m sorry if this question is tedious. But what standards for “power” do you use when asserting that America is the most powerful?
        America has the strongest military, but what does this mean? If there are potentially several countries that could destroy the whole world, America is definitely one of them. However, is America more powerful because it can hypothetically destroy the same area several more times than its next-most powerful competitor, or with more sophisticated weapons than this competitor?
        Do you use diplomatic power as a metric? Diplomacy is unquestionably a powerful tool in the modern world climate. However America fails consistently to create and maintain healthy diplomatic relationships with even countries that have been our allies traditionally.
        There are other countries with lower unemployment rates, longer life expectancies, and shorter work weeks. What does it mean to say that America is more powerful than they are?
        I’m sorry. I’m not sure how I stumbled over this entry, and if I’m not welcome, I’ll leave. But the statement that America is the “most powerful in the world” seems to be taken for granted by a large amount of people. What reasons do you have personally for invoking this statement?

      10. Re: sure
        When I said “most powerful” I was referring to the military and economic reach of the United States, and particularly to my country’s capacity for causing harm worldwide.
        You seem to have interpreted it as a generic superlative meaning “best”, which isn’t what was intended at all.
        In context, the point is that I feel responsible for my country’s actions and obligated to participate in politics for the good of the entire world because of our often disastrous strength.

      11. Re: sure
        I’m not sure about the rules between Commonwealth countries, but I am pretty sure they differ from others. There are lots of crazy exceptions for people who permanently reside in one Commonwealth country and work in another. I don’t think you can compare it to trying to move to a non-Commonwealth country.

      12. Re: sure
        we pay about the same taxes here as we did in the US…difference being that people here get healthcare and education….but not militia going around the world spending several billion per month. You don’t have to pay taxes back to the US….save maybe social security…depends on the country. Taxes are not a good enough reason not to escape Conrad.

      13. Re: sure
        I was making a different point actually; my reply was to the problem of enriching the evil empire with my labors, not to the question of avoiding taxes in order to keep my money.

      14. Re: sure
        This is interesting, I did not know about this rule. I thought you would have to pay US taxes regardless of where you lived.
        “If you meet certain requirements, you may qualify for the foreign earned income and foreign housing exclusions and the foreign housing deduction.
        If you are a U.S. citizen or a resident alien of the United States and you live abroad, you are taxed on your worldwide income. However, you may qualify to exclude from income up to $80,000 of your foreign earnings. In addition, you can exclude or deduct certain foreign housing amounts. See Foreign Earned Income Exclusion and Foreign Housing Exclusion and Deduction, later.”

      15. Re: sure
        Coming from someone who saw the fundy republic coming and who has, in fact, marginally survived moving to another county…Do it, do it now if you can. The first thing to fall will be Roe v. Wade and everything after that will just be icing on the cake. Barring a civil war, liberals will have no home in the US, over the next four years and possibly ever. Get a grip and get the fuck out. I know I won’t be flying home anytime soon as Osama got just what he wanted. Bail. While you still can. Shit ain’t that hard to get outside the US and you won’t really miss it…save maybe for cheese-its and corn dogs. There is no honor in sticking with a losing team.

      16. Re: sure
        We’ve had this conversation before. I think we just need to agree to disagree. Besides, you had other reasons; you married someone from there!
        There is honor in sticking with a losing team that might still win. It isn’t 1933 yet and it probably will not be.
        I survived Reagan; we’ll survive this.

      17. Re: sure
        True…but Reagan wasn’t a religious born again freak and I wouldn’t have moved here without knowing that America is/was fucked. Going down with the ship is a romantic notion…the rest of us know that jumping ship is a good way to survive. Once he gets 2 surpremes, it’s all over. Look at the rest of the elections. It’s too late……

      18. Reagan not a born-again freak?
        I believe Reagan was a born-again Christian Fundamentalist. For one, he did have his street renumbered because his house had the number 666.

      19. Re: Reagan not a born-again freak?
        He was and he wasn’t. He promised those nuts everything but basically ripped them off. All he really wanted to do was get his friends rich while waging war on the left. The moral conservatives got very little out of him.
        Bush is far scarier; he appears to be a true believer and makes decisions based on religious intuition. He’s what Reagan pretended to be, I think.

      20. Re: sure
        All you need is the third term. Once the almighty W gets to run for a third term, we’re fux0red. And once he wins, I don’t think there’ll be much more than a couple years before the cleansing.

      21. Re: sure
        Might still win how? Jesus Christ, I was scared enough by the thought that the present Supreme Court is considered “moderate”. Rehnquist* is about to kick off, and the odds of one of the others dying in the next 4 years are pretty good. If they get the next presidential election as well, they’ll certainly get to pick another seat or two. The thought of what they’ll be able to accomplish with the entire government, the plutocracy, and the media in the hands of far-right fundamentalist conservatives makes me piss myself in fear. Oh, right, and the companies that manufacture voting machines.
        I’m not sure exactly what kind of “fighting” I’d be able to do in the States, had I stayed. There’s no tangible enemy to fight. The enemies are greed and ignorance, and those are time-honoured traditions in human behaviour that haven’t changed at all in the past 5,000 years. I mean, look at Iraq. It’s been over a year now, and it’s been conclusively proven that Iraq didn’t actually have any weapons of mass destruction. Even El Presidente eventually admitted that publicly. Yet here’s a poll from last week which found that half of all Americans still believe that Iraq was building nukes and supporting al-Qaeda. There’s no demonstration or public debate that can change these people’s minds, because they stopped thinking a long time ago and are just sucking their opinions from Fox News’ foul teat. The fruits of the Republicans’ gutting of the public education system are a generation of apathetic drones, and it’s not like that’s getting any better. What kind of “fight” can any given person put up that will force people who are comfortable with not thinking to think?
        I’m not a hero. I’m tired to the core of waking up every morning and cursing mankind when I read the news. The sheer frustration of watching people mindlessly fall in line behind this shit despite everyone else’s efforts is making me a more bitter and hateful person every day. I just can’t keep it up and keep my will to live at the same time. So yes, I’m being a coward and a defeatist. But it beats battering my head against the wall of human stupidity until the social and political pendulum eventually swings back left, or jumping off a bridge. At this rate I doubt, however, that we’ll see things swing back in our lifetimes.
        (* Another fellow Milwaukeeite, incidentally. I didn’t know that.)

      1. Re: And there is the issue of taxes…
        Well, if they ever ram though that constitutional amendment that lets Arnold – uh, I mean any foreign-born person run for president, I’m nominating my dad because I know that More Hungarian Restaurants will be a big part of his platform.

    1. Re: And there is the issue of taxes…
      they say we pay more taxes here in Canada than in the states… but i get just about the same amount taken out of my paycheck each week as when i lived in the states. true we pay 15% sales tax here in Quebec, but that’s not true in the rest of Canada. it’s only 7% in Ontario…. that’s less than i paid living in California.
      also, like the taxes in countries like Sweden, sure it’s much higher, but it goes to pay things like socialized child care and provide one of the highest standards of living in the world. (last i checked, at least) in the States it seems you pay out the ass in taxes, then you pay out the ass some more for everything else.

      1. Re: And there is the issue of taxes…
        hmm… well not in restaurants, because when i visit my family there, i’m constantly figuring the tip wrong based on the taxes. *shrugs*

      2. Re: And there is the issue of taxes…
        Yes, in restaurants too, although you’ll occasionally find separate entries for taxable food and liquor.

      3. Re: And there is the issue of taxes…
        FWIW, this covers the Ontario sales tax basics. (Not to harp on it or anything, but I found it right after I posted my last reply.)

  4. Indeed
    But the most compelling reason not to leave the US is that if you do, you’ll leave it to the rest of them.
    It’s not the first time in your history that reason and justice have been the minority view. It’s disgusting and disheartening, yes. But if you disagree with the situation, it’s your civic duty to oppose it.
    The ballot box is only one means to achieve this. If it fails you, there are any number of other means to ensure that your voice is not lost. In fact, it’s more important now than ever that you find those means.
    Those of us who aren’t citizens of the US have our work cut out for us too. The country that I’m currently living in just signed a reciprocal agreement not to allow their respective citizens to be indicted by the International Criminal Court. This was one of the conditions of its receiving aid money from the Bush regime. Convincing people of the folly of this action is exceedingly difficult, because the ones who stand to suffer most from its reversal are those in power.
    As many have said before, something worth dying for is worth living for. Americans claim to be proud of the sacrifices their forebears made in order to achieve freedom and equality. Maybe now is the time to consider what your descendants will say about you.

    1. Re: Indeed
      I’d willingly die for my country in a civil war…sadly, i don’t thin anyone gives a fuck anymore. The fundys have taken control and all we can do is wait. Personally, I hope that Canada annexes the northeast. There are dark times ahead, may history have mercy on us all.

      1. Re: Indeed
        You might have misconstrued what I was saying. It’s easy to die for a cause. It doesn’t take but a moment or two, and then your worries are over. It’s much harder to live for one. That implies ceaseless worry, complications, conflict between the real and the ideal, and probably a lot of suffering.
        One of the items of US popular rhetoric I like least is the ease with which people will summon up the things worth dying for. There *are* things worth dying for, but they are very few.
        Leave the things worth dying for to the Republicans, and concentrate on life. It’s harder than the alternative, but heck, you’re smarter than they are; you can do it. 8^)

      2. Re: Indeed
        I have no problem singing Oh Canada, and I live in Massachusetts. I’d be happy if New England went north, and the border moved a bit from where it is now.
        Of course, its only a dream, I don’t think it would really happen. Be nice though, it’d be a hell of a lot easier to go and visit my cousins if we did go Canadian.

  5. My ego took a bruising last night when I saw the returns showing 80% “yes” votes on state initiatives to bar me from having the same priviledges as hetero folks when it comes to my choice of partner. I suffered a “how stupid can these people really be?” moment when I saw the election returns this morning.
    I have to balance that out with that America did not vote for the “most popular” candidate from either party. That was decided for us by small pods of voters in the state of Iowa a long time ago (they actually didn’t even cast a ballot–merely huddled in different corners of a room). I heard no calls last night or today that the electoral college should be changed, as I did four years ago. Not surprising. The morning-after pundits tell me this election was decided by Karl Rove delivering the vote from the WWJD crowd, forgetting Terry MacAuliffe allowed the candidates to destroy each other in a rather small arena to deliver a candidate for the Democratic Party without a protracted campaign, and we were left with one decided by the “What Would Marian the Librarian Do?” crowd from the bloody carcasses.
    Nothing has much changed in America since last night, or in the past century, even. We still have to bow to the rules of the Old Dominion and their spawn who settled the midwest, regardless if we call them Southern Democrats, Neo-Cons, etc. That was the consequence of keeping the Republic together and fighting the Civil War.
    Maybe we should have let them have the South after all.

      1. Its a way of releasing anger and stress, cause some don’t know what else to say.
        Myself, this election just gives me more motivation to go to UofT for my PhD, a 4 year program, and I could come back when the nightmare is over. Now just got to convince the fiancee…

  6. I have a friend who went to Canada within 2 monthes after finding out he had a job, so it obviously isn’t that difficult. He is not wealthy, but he is a liberal who had skills that Canada was looking for. He will be there for the next few years at the least.
    I’ll be in Canada where civil liberties are better than here and where they are looking for anthropologists. Or Holland, I have connections there and I know the culture almost as well as I know the culture here, plus the EU is looking for people for ESA. Either way my skills are in demand and they do not care that I am queer.
    I hope you can affect some change. I have fought. I am tired. I don’t want to fight anymore. Perhaps in a few years I will be able to fight again, but for now I want to move somewhere to take a nice long vacation with no neocons for miles.

    1. He will also only be allowed to stay legally until he loses that job. If he quits, he has to change countries again or do the immigration dance or re-do the work visa dance. And he has to go home until he solves it. A work visa is not immigration and immigration is not citizenship. Trust me; we’ve danced or started to dance all three.
      Also watch those wacky income tax laws — it kinda looks like you keep funding the regime you run from which is bizarre.
      I’m not actually trying to dissuade you here, but you should make sure you know what you’re getting into before you bolt. I wonder if the Immigration Canada web site has been slashdotted yet?

      1. His employer (McGill U) can easily cut through the red tape and contradicts what you say.
        Holland, I can get citizenship within 6 monthes according to my Dutch cousins.
        My husband was told by the New Zealand government that it would take only a year to become a citizen. Even less if the company wants to cut through the red tape.
        My husband and I have been through this dance as well a few years ago.

      2. Well, I’m glad that your friend had such useful connections, but that’s not particularly useful for the large majority of immigrants who don’t. Saying that his case implies that it’s “obviously not that difficult” is setting yourself up for a serious ulcer later, believe me.
        Also note that, unlike Holland, you have to have lived as a permanent resident in Canada for at least 3 years before you can even apply for citizenship. The application process takes another 1 or 2 years. It’s not for people in a hurry.

      3. well, again this is a somewhat special case, but i have Canadian family, and very shortly after 9/11 (coincidentally) i applied for my Canadian citizenship (i was born and raised in California). i was told at the time it could take up to a year to process, and with the crackdwon on everything in the states after the attacks, and everyone looking to the north to blame them for giving terrorists easy citizenship, i assumed it would take even longer.
        i had my papers in a month.
        i also have a number of friends who have moved here without the benefit of any family ties, or special jobs with McGill university, and have had little, if any, trouble with permanent resident/immigration issues. so while the system certainly sets you up to expect huge hassles, i can’t say i’ve personally seen any evidence of that.

      4. Having family in Canada who can support you makes all the difference in the world. If I had 100 000, I could basically say “this guy is my fiance, we’re getting married on x date, and I can support him until he gets his papers”, it would take no time at all. You need either relatives or cash, or a very very highly sought after job skillset.
        As far as the other person saying that McGill will go to bat for whoever… well, that’s fine, and that’s what they say now. Unfortunately McGill is an institution that relies on government funding as much as any educational institution. They have to balance the needs of their students and employees with the requirements of the government, and they’re going to pick on the government’s side if anything about someone’s case looks difficult. I would (personally) rather be more pessimistic about how long things would take than optimistic, so as not to delude myself. A pleasant surprise if it works out faster, though. =)
        It took fimm’s papers 2 years to come through, that’s largely because he had no relatives here and not a large amount of cash. Fortunately he’s a geek. =)

      5. see, that’s what i’ve always heard too… though i have a small handful of friends who came up here with no family, no large amounts of cash, and no special skills (that i know of), and they seemed to get through the process pretty quick. then again those i know that married or have fancy schmancy jobs did make it through quicker. dunno, maybe it’s just a fluke, or it just depends on who happens to get your paperwork on their desk?

      6. Yeah, could be, or could be that they just needed a work permit (which isn’t very hard) vs. full blown permanent resident status. I know a lot is definitely based on who you end up talking to, just like at customs. These guys seem to have a lot of bad days…

      7. The CIC is quite inscrutable. All I know is that it was a long and aggravating process in my case, and the cases of a couple friends who were immigrating and/or studying in the country. The best thing to do, I’d say, is to plan for the worst case scenario. It’s nice if you get in quickly, but you can’t count on it.

      8. yup, lord knows that’s what i did… i fully expected it to take forever, and i about got whiplash from the double-take i did when i got my papers. but i guess having family (‘specially in the military) greases the wheels a bit.

      9. Actually, I did have a pretty significant amount of cash at the time. I think that might have played a rather large role, frankly. Less so now after a few years of college and economic recession, of course…

  7. First off, great post.
    I have always valued your opinions on many number of subjects, however… As a citizen who’s concerned about the future of America and what appears to be a social regression on the horizon, what am I to do? I am not going all Baldwin and fleeing the country because of the election.
    However, that said… This truly is going to be a landmark election, with anywhere from 2-4 new conservative Supreme Court Justices being appointed, and only nobody knows how many other crazy policy changes on the table, such as changing the requirements for presidency, constitutional amendments BANNING things (the first since prohibition.) This could change social policy in America for anywhere from 15-20 years minimum, and could have a ripple effect until long after we’re dead.
    So, as someone who doesn’t believe in the system (the electoral system, the political beauracracy system, and most importantly the the system of government where there are no checks and balances (a system we are about to enter into, as all three branches will be politically aligned)… What am I supposed to do? Just sit back and suck it up?
    I sat in my 14×14 cubicle today, knowing that over the next 6 days I’m going to work 14 hour days without overtime, or any form of compensation for working so hard. I just got home… and I know that each night as I get home I’ll have at least 2 to 3 hours of studying for a meaningless degree that I’ve been asked to get by employer. And I’ve been going at it like this for ages, working and working and working for what? nothing. No hope for a better life. I can get more money, sure, but my vote still counts the same. And all the taxes I pay on my paycheck supports a country and programs that I don’t agree with and don’t support. Granted there are SOME programs I probably DO support with this administration, and in a perfect administration, I probably wouldn’t support them all. But now some of my money is going to go to supporting children learning about Jesus in private schools, and in a year or so, my tax money will be supporting all sorts of other god over science intiatives like the fighting of stem cell research.
    Man, and I dont even want to get into all the issues about how this administration will actually PROMOTE bigotry toward race, gender, sexual orientation and religious affiliation.
    I didn’t think this loss would actually affect me as much as it did, but it profoundly has. I firmly believe we’re moving toward another 4 years living in a Kingdom of Fear and Hatred. And I dont mean Fear and Hatred of Bush. I mean Fear and Hatred of that which is not Us. Xenophobia will reach all time highs and Americans (particularly those who voted for Bush and buy into the Kingdom of Fear and Hatred) will continue to shun and push away that which we do not understand, assuming we have all the answers.
    It’s a vicious cycle that will unfortunately never end in our lifetime. For some, the idea of an alternative culture to our regressive one, such as moving to Canada or Europe where progressive values are more prevalent is appealing. Sure, there are downsides to these foreign lands, just like there are downsides to OUR land…
    One thing you say in your post…
    You say Defeatism is a self-fulfilling apocalypse. Well, that may be the case, but, by all accounts, the sanity of America hs been defeated for some time now. The apocalypse is just around the corner.
    But it’s a good statement, it shouldn’t just be applied to politics.

    1. Re: …
      Thanks for the praise.
      If anything can fix these problems, it’s middle-class rage like yours. If we use that power before they take away the middle class, we might get the country back.

  8. Canada is an especially laughable choice here; when we sneeze, they get a cold.
    Your answer is equally laughable. Drop on by…I’m sure as fuck that we can arrange to give you more than a damned cold.

    1. I think you misunderstood
      I think you misunderstood. That saying refers to the fact that troubles in the States soon arrive in Canada also.

  9. Very well done
    Your friends list is long and varied, so I could easily be wrong about this, but something makes me think I’m the only one (or at least one of the few) who lives in the US and has what is basically an open invitation from another country to come on over at any time. The problem is that country happens to be in a very similar situation of having a leadership I cannot and will not follow.
    Though I’ve done plenty of thinking about moving, the idea has always been just to get out of Houston, out of Texas, and to another city that suits me better. It hasn’t been to flee the country. There are plenty of things wrong with this country, but it’s not entirely bad. It’s even somewhat good, wouldn’t you say? And I’m not an experienced traveler who enjoys surprises and strangeness. This is what I’m used to, and handling something else isn’t going to be all that simple even if they do let me in without too much of a hassle.
    What bothers me is not what will happen during this upcoming term, but what will be started and continue to affect the entire populace for decades to come. What bothers me is the intolerance masquerading as conservatism, as moderation? It’s ridiculous, and I think some of the best things said here are not in the main post itself, but in some of the comments and threads, especially your response to and the thread with .
    A citizen’s duty isn’t contained entirely within one day every four years. It makes me sick, but there’s plenty of work to do.

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