Ross Mackenzie

You have to love those crazy Canadians.

As it used to be with all things Scandinavian, so now with much in the realm of social policy that emanates from north of the border.

Welfarism was the Scandinavian - northern European - cry. Government health care - government "care" of just about everything, because government knows what's best for people better than do the people themselves. Correspondingly lofty taxes to pay for diminished service. Flight from God. Illegitimacy, easy divorce, family collapse. Diluted drug laws. Pacifism. Sloth.

Lots of license without much responsibility. Government enhancement of the self-centered self - an abundance of the things that make your everyday sociologist's heart beat pit-a-pat: humming, finding your karma at the convergence of forces, and doing your own thing. Don't worry, be happy.

You know.

And you know, the United States should emulate the northern European countries, as all the right people urged it to do, because Scandinavia had cracked the code on how to be - you know - socially good.

Scandinavia found in Canada a similar sister. Early on - remember, during Vietnam? - Canada proved particularly hospitable to peacenik refugees from the American draft selective in their opposition to the U.S. effort to stanch the flow of communism there. Maybe it's something in northern waters, or perhaps it's what all that cold weather can do to the brain.

Anyway, comes now in Canada a flight from right reason, a "gadarene" rush over the edge of normalcy. Your correspondent long has owned a log cabin well north, just shy of the Canadian border - so, from demographic spillage, he well understands attitudes in northern latitudes. Canadians are marvelous people, but recent pronouncements are revealing their country as Haight-Ashbury north, with black flies...

- Who can ever forget Canada's single-payer health-care system, which hillaries everywhere ballyhoo as the worldwide paradigm despite (a) its ineluctable downward spiral and (b) its determination to drive physicians and patients south? Hear The New York Times: "A recent (Canadian) government study indicated that 4.3 million Canadian adults - or 18 percent of those who saw a doctor in 2001- reported they had difficulty seeing a doctor or getting a test or surgery done in a timely fashion. Three million Canadians are unable to find a family physician, according to several private studies, producing a situation all the more serious since it is the family doctor who refers patients to specialists and medical testing."

Ross Mackenzie

Ross Mackenzie lives with his wife and Labrador retriever in the woods west of Richmond, Virginia. They have two grown sons, both Naval officers.

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