Poll confirms Canadians are total bores

From VICE:

“Most of you are probably planning to get wasted off your face (or take drugs) and watch fireworks to celebrate tomorrow’s midsummer stat holiday. But to really amp up the patriotic fervour, there’s really no better way to celebrate our great nation than some neurotic hand-wringing about what it means to be Canadian. Navel-gazing made this country great, and don’t you forget it.

Thankfully, just in time for your day off, Historica Canada commissioned an Ipsos-Reid poll to see how some classic Canadian clichés hold up in the harsh light of social science. These folks are the descendants of the organization whose Heritage Minutes convinced an entire generation of Canadian children that smelling burnt toast meant they were about to have a brain seizure, so you know that they’re legit.


They surveyed just over 1,000 people online and weighted the results by age, region, gender, income, education, and family size to make it as representative as possible. Most of what they found was about what you’d expect.


It turns out that almost 60 percent of Canadians are pretty big on hockey, and a full 18 percent believe it’s the greatest sport on earth. We can only assume that the 13 percent who said they’re “sick to death of hearing about it all the time” work for ISIS (and will be soon featured in a Conservative attack ad targeting Justin Trudeau) and have already been removed by the Mounties to an undocumented black site. Even the Soviets had the decency to enjoy hockey.

About 65 percent of people have seen Canada’s mascot—the noble beaver—in the wild, and more than half have also seen either a moose, a loon, or a bear somewhere in the great outdoors. However, people in Atlantic Canada or the West were slightly more likely to have gone outside (likely for nature in the West, or getting fucked up in the East). Those pulling in upwards of six-figure incomes were also marginally more likely than us plebs to have either seen one of our fine national animals in their natural habitat, or gone canoeing (88 percent) or dogsledding (16 percent). Indulging yourself in rustic Canadian authenticity takes a lot of money, I guess.


Speaking of national symbols, other surveys have shown that Tim Hortons is neck-and-neck with the Monarchy as a venerable Canadian institution. But I guess the pollsters figured that asking anyone what they thought about the great (mostly US-owned) Canadian doughnut shoppe this year risked triggering a flurry of racist threats on Twitter.

Celine Dion (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) was the artist 38 percent of those surveyed were proudest to call Canadian, and it spiked to 63 percent in la belle province. It’s tempting to read the fact that only six percent wanted to give the throne to Drizzy as a another damning indictment of the country’s whiteness, although then again, they didn’t ask about Rush at all, so maybe it’s just bad polling. I mean, how in the fuck you run a respectable survey about the Most Canadian Musicians without bringing up Geddy, Neil, and Alex is totally beyond me. Lord tunderin Jesus, indeed.

Close to 30 percent of people nationwide aren’t planning on doing anything to mark Canada Day, although this goes up to 49 percent in Quebec. Vive les patriotes!, and Moving Day and all that. Only 14 percent of East Coasters plan to skip the day’s festivities—proper thing given there’s shit all to do and the Holy Canadian Trinity (The Tragically Hip, Our Lady Peace, and City and Colour) are usually in town for the region’s One Big Show for the Year. Even in Newfoundand and Labrador, where we spend the morning in sombre reflection on the grotesquerie of war and the tragic folly of Man, we still manage to get the barbecues and beers going by the early afternoon. It may be less a celebration of Confederation’s birthday than giving the Rock’s lost generation an eternal Irish wake, but hey: a party’s a party.

A full 81 percent of Canadians have “eh” as part of their regular linguistic rotation, although only about a quarter drop it in everyday conversation. Half of us only blurt it out occasionally, and another six percent only use it when they want to play themselves up as a hyper-hoser dancing bear for Americans. This is actually the only question in the survey that even comes close to broaching the subject of anti-Americanism,
which is weird, because kneejerk hate for the USA is actually the most defining feature of Canadian identity. Aside from constantly over-analyzing Canadian identity, anyway. Sorry.

Confederation was built on “not being American.” The Revolution in 1776 was a civil war and the British loyalists who carved a country out of northern North America never got over the loss. We chafe at these kitschy stereotypes of Canada as a nation of poutine-munching liberal lumberjacks, even while we wrap ourselves up in them. One of the highest watermarks in patriotism during the past 20 years was the Joe Canadian commercial, and that was just a dude disputing the same tropes Historica polled for in an effort to one-up the States. We need to neurotically preen ourselves for Uncle Sam because otherwise we have to get down to the brass tacks of working out exactly what this country stands for. Stuff like rectifying the fact that the country was built on genocide and stolen land, figuring out how the fuck we’re supposed to get along with Quebec, assembling a society that actually welcomes refugees and immigrants instead of cutting them adrift, or settling the cultural Cold War that’s been simmering between Calgary and Toronto for the last 60 years. You know, the fun stuff.”



*** Comment:

What a lame country. When you hear “Canada” it always comes back to: hockey, beavers, maple syrup, being “nice”, not being American, and maybe Natives and the French (oh and throw in the Queen).


It just doesn’t get more lame. A country whose citizens pay more per capita for the upkeep of the royal family than the British do. The Queen doesn’t even live in Canada and she’s not unique to it (see: commonwealth). At least the Queen lives in England and Britain has a rich history of monarchy.

Beavers, maple syrup … really? A whole country’s identity is based on that? As for being “nice” – the only ones who say that are Canadians themselves! Hockey … a game Canadian teams can’t even win at. It’s always Americans taking home the Stanley cup, although I’ll concede the Canadian Olympic teams occasionally win gold.


Then there are the Natives … most Canadians consider them a nuisance or are outright disdainful; racism is rampant. The only time they come in handy is when we need some “culture” to feed the press or tourists from abroad. Many Natives live in third-world conditions. Canadians like to brag about their superiority over Americans when genocide was practiced against Natives here also, but is glossed over and white-washed even more than ‘American history’.


The Quebecois: the bastard child of England and France: not truly French, not ‘truly Canadian’, attempting to live in self-imposed exile and holding the entire country hostage (via referendum/separation threats), while forcing their language on the 90% English-country to the cost of BILLIONS per year.


Canada … not quite British, not quite French; decimated the Natives. No real culture to call its own minus a sad little coffee chain, production of maple syrup, and slavishly following ‘hackey’. Bitterly jealous of its brother down south who has sent man to the moon, created the internet, created an unparalleled republic and is known the world over. To make up for its lack of culture or interesting people, it calls itself superior to other countries because the people are “nicer”, “less racist”, and so on – none of which is true.


Possibly the only redeeming factor is that the country has natural beauty, which is no different from down south (USA) or Russia; most of it is a cold north (forcing nearly the entire population of the country to live along the American border). Only a developed nation thanks to the wealth and protection of the USA!


Canada or .. as should be better known: CA-NADA!

No surprise here: Canada a turn-off for some refugees

Globe & Mail article:

“Did it feel like a slap in the face? When the federal government revealed this week that
only 6.3 per cent of Syrian refugees living in Jordanian and Lebanese camps, when offered the chance, wanted to come to Canada, did we feel just a bit spurned? Like we had cooked a three-course dinner and vacuumed the house, only to learn that our friends would rather go out for pizza?

… Which is why this should be sadly familiar. Contrary to our self-image, Canada is not good at attracting newcomers. We have, for most of our history, been better at deterring them – and we’ve done little lately to improve this record.


In the century after the War of 1812, Canada’s stifling Anglican culture and colonial bureaucratic-mindedness were a powerful deterrent to arrivals. From the 1850s to the 20th century, a Statistics Canada historical analysis concluded, “many immigrants entered Canada. However, more people, especially those living in Eastern Canada, left the country primarily to settle in the United States.” The United Empire Loyalists who settled north of the border never numbered more than a few tens of thousands; the number of Canadians, and immigrants to Canada, who moved southward was an order of magnitude larger.


For the first half-century of Confederation, Canada endured “migratory losses – more people left Canada than entered the country,” Statscan said. As our southern neighbour built a powerful economy on the ambitions of entrepreneurial newcomers, we missed the chance, settling for wood-hewing and water-drawing.

It was only in the early 20th century, under Wilfrid Laurier’s leadership, that Canada learned to attract and keep people – by spending serious money on agencies and campaigns abroad, and giving people land and cash to come. No period has come close to the Laurier decade for keeping immigrants.


We soon fell back to our exclusionary patterns. With the exception of the 1910s and the 1950s, immigration in the 20th century contributed little to Canada’s population growth:
In many decades people didn’t want to come; in others, people arriving barely outnumbered those departing. We spent much of that century turning away refugees and warning each other about the civilizational threats posed by southern and eastern Europeans and Asians. Only after 1999 did immigration, for the first time, overtake childbirth as the main source of population growth.

… Even in Britain, Canada has become a turnoff: We are currently the fourth-most-popular country for British emigration, far behind Australia (which receives twice as many people), the United States and Spain. In fact, it’s a net loss: During the past decade, an average of 5,200 British emigrants came here each year, while 8,500 moved the other way. Worse, the British Post Office surveyed British emigrants, and the happiest were those in France, Spain, the United States, Australia and Thailand – Canada didn’t make the list.


We should heed the lesson we learned a few years ago in Ireland: After the country’s economy collapsed in 2008, Ottawa hoped for a migration boom of skilled workers. But only about 1,000 a year came, and they complained about unfriendly conditions and unaffordable cities. Only after paying for a big advertising and outreach campaign did that rise to 5,000 – for a year, until things got better in Ireland.


Next time we have a months-long national debate about migrants, maybe it shouldn’t be about them, but about us – why we still seem so cold and unwelcoming, even to those we want.”