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superdave 06-15-2004 08:53 AM

ER for Canadians
 
Hi:

I have been lurking on the forum for some time. I live in Canada, am 45, and have been part time ERd for a while. I like being ERd in summer rather than winter here, as we still have 2 in the nest. The IT boom was good to us, so ER was within reach early. Never got too deep in the markets, so was not hurt as much as most by the crashing noises.

Anyway, it would seem that Canadian residents would have a much easier go of Er with our social safety net. I always thought the financial planning storys requiring 2-4 million in the bank to retire were a bit silly.

Any other ERd Canadians out there?

superdave 06-16-2004 11:40 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
No Canadians on the forum???

unclemick 06-16-2004 12:21 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Welcome Superdave

We've had a few - But we have a bad habit of ribbing them - cold country, cost of living, etc, etc. Don't take it serious. So I'll - heh, heh - start. Where in Canada do you find a low cost of living?

cute fuzzy bunny 06-16-2004 01:10 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Just so everyone knows I DO have limits, I was going to tell the joke about whores and hockey players, but I restrained myself. :-X

John Galt 06-16-2004 02:00 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Thanks for holding yourself TH :)

Hey, no one has sent me this one yet, so I offer it up
to all of you.

A blonde is pulled over by a cop. The cop turns out to
be a blonde also, and she says "Let me see your license!" The blonde in the car fumbles in her purse and says, "What does it look like?" Cop says, "It's
rectangular and has your picture on it." The blonde
driver fumbles some more and finds her square
compact mirror, which she hands to the cop. Cop looks in the mirror, hands it back and says "Sorry! You can go.
I didn't know you were police." :)

John Galt

cute fuzzy bunny 06-16-2004 03:27 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Ruh Roh. We're in extreme danger of going non-linear. Ayy?

GDER, for a while there i thought you might be doing your best Arthur Fonzarelli.

cute fuzzy bunny 06-16-2004 03:54 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
I played a lot of hockey, have never seen a mountie, but my hair did turn blonde one summer from the sun...

BigMoneyJim 06-16-2004 04:47 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Just so everyone knows I DO have limits, I was going to tell the joke about whores and hockey players, but I restrained myself. :-X
I think I ran gummy off with that one. I still feel bad about that. :'(

Zipper 06-16-2004 05:18 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
superdave, they can rib all they want, but you and I know different. We have the cheapest and best food in the world. These guys all freak about health costs, but to a Canadian.........just show your Health Card. :P We live longer, don't shoot each other, and our cities and highways are not litter lined. The beer is good. ;) I live 2 hours from Toronto or Detroit, and an hour from Port Huron MI. The standard of living of a middleclass Canadian is about equal to an American. We tax the sh*t out of the super rich, so Americans win hands down there. It gets cold and gloomy here in Southern ON in the winter :'(. Just like MI, NY, OH, IL, WI etc. That's why we flock to Florida in the winter.......just like our stateside cousins. I expect the border to disappear sometime this century.

Zipper 06-16-2004 06:30 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
My son lives in Vancouver Cut-Throat, and it doesn't sound like he'll be coming back except for visits. Mrs. Zipper and I and his brother miss him dearly. I guess it's California north for Canadians. Victoria has been known to have a snowless winter. Contrast that to Minnesota or Ontario! :o Climate wise it would equate with Seattle I suppose. Ever tried whitefish from Lake Huron? m-m-m-m :-*

cute fuzzy bunny 06-16-2004 08:00 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Maybe we need a special forum for canadian ER's so they dont feel persecuted?

nfs 06-16-2004 10:37 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Anyway, it would seem that Canadian residents would have a much easier go of Er with our social safety net. I always thought the financial planning storys requiring 2-4 million in the bank to retire were a bit silly.

Any other ERd Canadians out there?
There are a few hanging around, including me. You have to give ERs some time to respond, though - it was a grand day for sailing!

Canadian ER isn't remarkably different than any other ER. Medical care paid for through the tax system keeps away one of the USian ER banes, the high cost of health insurance (or the cost of ill health if you have no insurance) but the tradeoff is slightly higher taxes.

The key, just as it is in the US, is controlling expenditures, not having an enormous portfolio.

nfs 06-16-2004 10:40 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
As for the rest of you jokers ...

Why do Canadians associate American beer with making love in a canoe?

John Galt 06-17-2004 01:23 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Because if you tip over then next time you'd be
wiser, Bud?

John Galt

Cut-Throat 06-17-2004 03:46 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

As for the rest of you jokers ...

Why do Canadians associate American beer with making love in a canoe?
Because it's F**king close to water!

unclemick 06-17-2004 05:21 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Man! --- I should of keep my mouth shut --- I need to go back and reread some of those --old,old posts -- maybe the cost of living and climate in Canada isn't so bad after all. Still have fond memories of visits to greater B.C. in my younger days.

John Galt 06-17-2004 08:53 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
I was telling my wife the other day about what a poor job we do in the USA of policing our borders. I recognize it's a nearly impossible job to keep people
out if they want to come here. It would be nice if our government would send them home when they catch them. Anyway, I was thinking about the very long land borders with Mexico and Canada, and how in lots of places you can just walk across. Of course, Canada
has a big advantage as so few people would want to live there :)

John Galt

cute fuzzy bunny 06-17-2004 09:35 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
John -

A long time concern of mine. Mass invasion when those canadian bastards swarm across the borders.

I should probably point out at this juncture that both of my fathers parents are canadian, and not even from the good part...northern saskatchewan...apparently once they broke their feet free from the ice, they ran like hell.

Calgary_Girl 06-19-2004 01:18 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Hi SuperDave!!!

I'm 32, hubby is 34 and, you guessed it, we live in Calgary.

We are on track to ER - net worth is approx. $700K. Hubby is American but I managed to drag him North of the border (without too much kicking and screaming) since he loves the skiing in the Rockies and Calgary's economy is rockin' these days. We both work in Oil & Gas so the money has been good.

Although we haven't pinpointed an exact ER age, we are looking at 50 at the latest. We have no debt since we paid off the mortgage two years ago but then again we don't have kids yet and I know they can be darn expensive!!!!

Gotta run but just thought I'd let you know you're not the only Canuck out there :) Gotta go out and enjoy the great weather today - it's 25C (about 82F for you yanks ;D ).

Maria

cute fuzzy bunny 06-19-2004 01:21 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Be careful about that "no kids" thing.

We're expecting and there wasnt a stork or cabbage leaf in sight.

Its really inexplicable, we're not even married yet, and I know this baby thing cant happen until after you're married!!!

John Galt 06-19-2004 03:08 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Hey TH, according to my son-in-law (Lutheran
minister), you are going to hell. Just thought you'd want to know.

John Galt

cute fuzzy bunny 06-19-2004 03:18 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Man thats no freakin' surprise.

Satan should be advised that I'll be kicking down the door to get in and the place aint gonna be the same...

John Galt 06-19-2004 03:41 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Well, TH, if there is a Hell, I may see you there :)

John Galt

AltaRed 06-19-2004 06:54 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Superdave, welcome. I am a Calgarian currently working as an ex-pat in Houston in the oil industry. I am 55 and can take discounted DB pension now but the current assignment is satisfactory so far and my wife loves the warmer weather for now. I'll work until the assignment ends in a year or two or until somebody pisses me off excessively at work. I feel good that we have our financial house in order so that I can be FIREd when I want to be.

We have 2 out of the nest in Calgary but still partially on the payroll. We will hopefully get out from under that next year. Spouse and I haven't yet decided where to retire - so I guess I better not retire on 30 days notice until we do! Thinking either Victoria area on year round basis, or Calgary in summer and the Gulf Coast in winter.

As another Canadian poster said, ER and retirement for Candians isn't really much different than for Americans. We have our RRSP's similar to tax defered US plans and OAS versus Social Security. And we have to worry about a safe withdrawal rate. The one thing that we don't have to worry about much is our health plans although there's always a question if the quality of health care will be there for the big wave of boomers 10 years from now.

I am slowly converting my mostly equity portfolio with about 50/50 value/growth into a more value based portfolio. I do not want to commit to bonds now at the low end of the interest curve. Best to stay short term of 30 days - 2 years max until the interest rate surge of up to 2 points happens. I currently have a lot of cash sitting in ING for that reason. :-/

As many threads in here have said, read Bernstein in particular for investment direction. I am aiming for about a 2% withdrawal rate from investments once I retire as the golden years of the 90's are behind us and I don't think we can count on more than a 4-5% return on a balanced portfolio over a 10-15 year period. >:(

Cut-Throat 06-19-2004 07:02 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Hey TH, according to my son-in-law (Lutheran
minister), you are going to hell. *Just thought you'd want to know.

John Galt
Yup, I think you're right John, I heard Jimmy Swaggert say the same thing on TV once ;D

sgeeeee 06-19-2004 08:01 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Hey TH, according to my son-in-law (Lutheran
minister), you are going to hell. *Just thought you'd want to know.

John Galt
TH,

Send me a post card when you get there. I like to collect postmarks from exotic places. :)

cute fuzzy bunny 06-19-2004 08:58 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
John - I'll have the cold drinks on ice waiting for you, unless you get there first, in which case the first round is on you.

SG...somehow I think you're going to be the next guy buying the drinks. But I'll have the local post office run you off a postmark or two.

sgeeeee 06-19-2004 09:22 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

. . . SG...somehow I think you're going to be the next guy buying the drinks. *But I'll have the local post office run you off a postmark or two.
Thanks for the vote of confidence.

John, TH, What are you guys having?

cute fuzzy bunny 06-19-2004 09:25 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Anything upstream of turpentine is good. We'll save the turpentine for later.

John Galt 06-20-2004 03:18 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Turpentine cocktails would lead to a fine finish, he
opined................

John Galt

unclemick 06-20-2004 03:40 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
"turpentine coctails" ? That was the judgement of on some of my 'least than stellar' homemade wine and beer batches over years past.


superdave 06-24-2004 11:19 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Good to hear from fellow Canadians. I think the two main incentives Canadians have to ER earlier than you would in America is:

1) Health care costs lower ( obviously )
2) higher tax rates pretty much eliminate reason to work any longer than you must/have to anyway.

The downside is, with the higher tax rates, it takes longer to accumulate capital. Also , as mortgage interest in not deductable, it really does not make sense to carry a mortage any longer than necessary.

Zipper 06-24-2004 04:46 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Mrs. Zipper's mother is 83. She, her husband and Mrs. Zipper and siblings emigrated to Canada in 1952. Canada has had medicare since the late 60's. Mother-in-law has had excellent care. She has had heart-valve replacement 30 years ago, hip and knee relacement, gall bladder out, more open heart surgery .........hell, she's the bionic woman. No charge! ;D. We live in the London-St. Thomas area of ON and are 2 minutes from a world class hospital. Of my retirement worries out of 10, health care ranks last (10).

Zipper 06-24-2004 06:10 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
That's an easy one. Ask anybody. Your dollar has been overvalued since the CEO's commandeered your economy in the late 90's and went on the option binge. In the past year the US$ has fallen against the Aussie-Canadian dollars, Euro, you name it. China is pegged and holding you up. Check the MacDonald hamburger currency exchange at the Economist. Canada has had a balanced budget for the past 5 years and a whopping current account surplus. But don't get me started! I'm on your side. Canada has NOT been carrying it's defence load for decades and we are dependent on you, and I thank you very much. Maybe that's why we have better health care?

Zipper 06-24-2004 07:24 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Well, let's start with Canada being your largest trading partner. ;)You sure buy a hell of lot of oil, gas, minerals, forest products, and manufactured goods. :P Counting the Tar Sands, we've got more oil than Saudi Arabia. And how about all that Electricity Quebec sends south to New England and New York. Uranium for your Nukes comes from Saskatchewan. All your Crown Victoria cop cars are manufactured 10 minutes from me in St. Thomas. Dodge Caravans and Pacifica's from Windsor. Chrysler 300's from Brampton. Impalas, Grand-Prix's, Century's and Regals from Oshawa. Corolla's from Cambridge. Equinox's from Ingersoll and Honda in Alliston. We seem to be able to buy homes, afford higher education to those who want it, have a superior health system, much cheaper drugs, clean cities with minimal litter...........and a crime rate a fraction of yours. :-*

Zipper 06-24-2004 07:32 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
By the way? What's a government dependent early retiree? ::)Are you on welfare? Medicaid? You and your wife might not like Canadian dollars, but they sure do in FL, TX, AZ, NM, and Nevada. Vegas is "the promised land"! ;)

Zipper 06-24-2004 08:04 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
So 'howcum you pay the highest healthcare rates in the world........but we are healthier, live longer, and since we already live here, we don't need to head north for cheaper drugs?? ::)

Zipper 06-24-2004 08:32 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
I'm sure anywhere in the US is great compared to....CITIES:Ranked & Rated: More than 400 Metropolitan Areas Evaluated in the U.S & Canada :Sperling & Sander 2004. Out of 400 [ Charlottesville VA (1), Santa Fe NM (2), Honolulu (5), Vancouver (20), Minneapolis (24), Montreal (30), *Ottawa (35), New York/Toronto (40), Tampa (48), Los Angeles (54) Denver/Calgary (60), Edmonton (70), San Diego (74), Winnipeg (75), Indianapolis (79), Cincinnati (92), San Francisco (107), Miami (125), New Orleans (139), Halifax (150), Chicago (155), Houston (158), London ON (165), Baltimore (179), Detroit (263)]

Zipper 06-24-2004 08:40 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Tell me where you live GDER, and I'll rank you? Or you can go to the source and look it up yourself.

Hyperborea 06-24-2004 09:18 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

2) higher tax rates pretty much eliminate reason to work any longer than you must/have to anyway.
I wouldn't be so quick with the comparison. I haven't done any Canadian taxes for a while but I think that if you run the numbers on a few different scenarios you will find that they will come out roughly comparable. It tilts towards better on the Canadian side of things once you include the costs of US health care even if your employer is picking up some of the tab.

In a retirement scenario the taxes for a Canadian couple could be quite a bit less than that for a US couple. The capital gains rates are very low (only 50% of gains are counted as income) and if you income split (Canadian taxes individuals not couples) you can keep the rate very low.

I'm a Canuck who works down in Silicon Valley, am in my late 30's, plan to retire in about 7 years, and then leave the US and travel for 4-10 years. After that my wife and I have talked about locations to settle into with Toronto being in the top few.

John Galt 06-25-2004 03:26 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Back when I could tolerate big cities and cold weather,
Toronto was my favorite place to be.

John Galt

Hyperborea 06-25-2004 07:53 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Why anyone would want to live in a metropoitan area is beyond me?

For hyperborea: I understand why you would want to work in the U.S. to enjoy higher pay, lower 'working income' taxes, and better climate. *I'm not sure I fully appreciate, why you would want to go back even for 'low <no?> cost' health care. If your gov't employed health care workers do receive lower compensation and have to accept a lousy climate, hard to see how you would attract very many of the 'best and the brightest'. Why you would you want to wait in 'cue' for this care, when there are so many other alternatives, is ... ?? Oh well, choices - it's all about choices.
The pay here in Silicon Valley is higher yes but that is because there is still for people with certain skill sets a shortage. *In any shortage situation there will be higher costs to the purchaser or in this case to the employer. *There are also higher costs to live here but if you are careful you do end up ahead. *However this shortage situation doesn't exist for most of the mundane computer jobs in the US so the pay isn't really any higher.

As for the taxes, I've just run some really rough numbers and I come out with a couple of thousand dollars more in taxes in Canada as compared to my multiple tens of thousands of dollars US tax bill. *However, that didn't include all of the Canadian deductions (rough over morning coffee calculations) and my US taxes are driven lower by the large interest amount that I pay on my US home. *It also doesn't include the cost that I pay for my mostly employer subsidized health insurance. *Finally, that doesn't include the very large amount I pay in FICA taxes. *All in all as I said earlier roughly comparable to perhaps being cheaper in Canada. *If yo income split the numbers for Canada get even better. *But I guess it's easy to disparage without actually working the numbers isn't it?

Better climate is a personal decision. *Right now I experience the two seasons of Silicon Valley - rain and summer. *I never minded the winter and I used to X-country ski which I can't do here.

As to why Toronto? *Just look at your opening line. *If you want a safe, clean, diverse, big city then Toronto is your choice. *I don't understand how anyone doesn't want to live in the city.

Hyperborea 06-25-2004 01:39 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

LOL -- I guess you have me there, but before I take out my stubby pencil -- Do you really believe my gov't pension + eventual SS benefits *+ investment income (all taxed by U.S.)would result in lower taxes, if I paid canuk taxes on top of U.S. taxes?? Palleez some common sense.
Common sense? What kind of common sense is it when you change the scenario after the answer doesn't suit you? The original comment you posted was that I was paying less taxes by working in the US as opposed to Canada. Now you are making the scenario one where somebody is paying taxes to two countries. Those situations are always troublesome and you basically end up with the worst of both taxation systems. For the most part those kind of situations only occur in the year that you change residence unless you are a US citizen because the US government wants tax from you no matter where you live.

Quote:

Will you still be able to collect on your U.S. SS when you go back?
Yup.

Quote:

As I stated before, you couldn't pay me to use canuk's socialized medicine. So, if by some miracle paying taxes to two countries was actually cheaper, there is absolutely NO way I would trade my earned medical benefits for the dubious delights of socialism.
Do you mean your socialized government provided health system given for military service? I've heard a lot of horrific stories about the military health care for vets in the US.

Quote:

It should be real interesting to see what happens in a few years, when canuk's boomers start to hit zip's mum's age and all want the freebee ultra-bionic treatments at the same time.
My father had one of his knees replaced just a couple of years ago and everything went very smoothly. He's currently looking into having the other one done (probably bad genetics, squash - it's harsh on the knees, and a lifetime of working on concrete floors). No more hassles than health care in the US. The big trouble with health care in the US that I've had is having to change all of my medical providers (GP, dentist, wife's OB/GYN) every time I've changed jobs because the health insurance company changed and the doctors didn't take that one. Back in Canada I had been seeing the same doctor who had delivered me.

Hyperborea 06-25-2004 03:00 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Sorrrry about changing trains in mid thought on you. I tried to apply your logic to see how it would work for me. You asked if I had done the math on taxes and I really have no reason to do tax math for anyone else.
Well, if you want to make the claim that you did that I was paying less taxes in the US then you did unless you were willing to make a completely uninformed comment.

Quote:

It sounds like in your old age, you'll have U.S. youngsters to support your SS and canuk youngsters paying your med bills. It should be interesting to see who gets fed up first. :o
I've actually got US SS and Canadian CPP that I've paid into with credits enough in both for a pension and my wife has credits in the Japanese system and may have enough for the US SS before we leave the US. The Canadian system is on quite sound footing with a large pool of investments built up so I think that it has larger odds of paying out. None of these are included in my retirement planning as it will be about 20 years after I retire until I can collect any of them.

As for the health care systems I won't be using it for quite a while as I plan to be travelling for quite a number of years before possibly returning to Canada. The survival of the Canadian health care system seems much more likely than the US Medicare system that most US citizens will be relying on in retirement though.

AltaRed 06-26-2004 10:52 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
I've been disappointed at the bias of some of the Americans in here, and ignorance of what is comparable and not comparable between the 2 countries. There is no way to make an informed judgement until one has lived and worked in both countries. I have worked in the USA 4 different times including my 1.5 years so far in Texas. Perhaps it's time to trust those individuals a bit more who have some real knowledge.

Each country has some pluses and minuses, but on balance there is little difference. Canada does not allow interest deductions on a mortgage on a principal residence, but they don't tax the gains either upon sale. And before someone comments on paying double taxes, they obviously don't understand the tax treaty between the 2 countries.

Americans also pay huge FICA taxes which must be figured into the income tax rate. Also health care costs - and if Americans don't have healthcare, well, then it's SOL with Medicaid, etc. My co-pay with my Fortune 500 company is way more stateside than what it was in Canada. When the adjustments are done, there is little difference between the 2 countries in most areas (high cost urban areas aside).

Both Canucks and Americans could learn FIRE from each other if they chose to. It's obvious the American posters in this thread don't.

superdave 07-14-2004 08:40 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Wow. I was off camping for a couple of weeks and my thread went crazy.

For what it is worth, I am a Canadian but lived in Houston Texas and Boston Mass for 4 years and 1 year respectively. For the purpose of accumulating capital, Texas was really good with no state income taxes and a relatively low cost of living. We Only stayed 1 year in Boston primarily because we could not accuulate capital , primarily because of the high cost of living and high tax rates. In fact, we found that financially, we were best off in Texas. However, to ER, Canada is very good after you have a nest egg .

As was already stated, you are much better off paying off the mortgage early in Canada, even with todays low interest rates. We leave in Nova SCotia, think it was a great place to ER, but do miss the 'opportunitys' presented in some of the larger US centeres. However, you can't have everything all the time.

John Galt 07-14-2004 10:54 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Or, as I like to put it, we can anything we want.
We just can't do everything.

John Galt

Calgary_Girl 07-24-2004 09:59 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 


Each country has some pluses and minuses, but on balance there is little difference. Canada does not allow interest deductions on a mortgage on a principal residence, but they don't tax the gains either upon sale. And before someone comments on paying double taxes, they obviously don't understand the tax treaty between the 2 countries.



Hey AltaRed I have to agree with you. I lived in Tulsa, Oklahoma for a couple of years and OVERALL found the cost of living about the same as in Canada with some differences. Healthcare cost me a lot more in the States what with all of the co-pays than it currently does in Canada. Housing was cheaper in Tulsa (since it was a smaller city and had a less than desirable economy) but my property taxes were higher than they currently are in Calgary. I find it much easier also to save for retirement in Canada with the carry-forward RRSP rules. In the States if you can't afford to contribute to your 401K than that's too bad and your contribution room is lost forever.

My American husband and I moved back to Calgary to be closer to my family and to take advantage of the great economy in Calgary and the standard of living. Also, I didn't care too much for the level of violence in Tulsa....everyone down there would tell me what a great place it was to raise kids and I would have to laugh because it had HALF the population of Calgary but DOUBLE the murder rate.

John Galt 07-25-2004 03:12 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
The "level of violence" Calgary vs. Tulsa touched a nerve with me. While not disputing the "stats"
I do know Tulsa is relatively safe compared to many
other U.S. cities (I worked in Detroit for several years
so I have seen some violence up close and personal).
I have my own theories about why there is more
violence in one place (or country) vs. another.
However, I do take comfort in the fact that most of the states in the USA allowed licensed "concealed carry"
of firearms. As usual, I would rather take care of myself than rely on "the government" to protect me.

John Galt

Zipper 07-25-2004 05:08 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
If you come over to Ontario from Illinois John, make sure you check your guns at the door. :P

Jarhead* 07-25-2004 06:02 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

The "level of violence" Calgary vs. Tulsa touched a nerve with me. *While not disputing the "stats"
I do know Tulsa is relatively safe compared to many
other U.S. cities (I worked in Detroit for several years
so I have seen some violence up close and personal).
I have my own theories about why there is more
violence in one place (or country) vs. another.
However, I do take comfort in the fact that most of the states in the USA allowed licensed "concealed carry"
of firearms. *As usual, I would rather take care of myself than rely on "the government" to protect me.

John Galt
John, as Cut-Throat mentioned to you once, try reading the post before you answer.
Calgary-Girl was comparing the violence in Tulsa to Calgary. (Not Tulsa verses any other state-side city).
Sorry, John, have about an hour and a half to kill before I tee off this morning.

MikeK 07-25-2004 07:13 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

I've been disappointed at the bias of some of the Americans in here, and ignorance of what is comparable and not comparable between the 2 countries. *
I've also been quite disappointed with the bias and, truthfully, ignorance of the Americans on these posts. First, I'm an American but married to a Canadian. I find that most Americans have no appreciation or willingness to learn about other cultures. I get the perception that most Americans think Canadians are just American-wanna-bes. This is not true. Canada is a beautiful country with wonderful people and are regularly listed above America in polls documenting the best places to live. Now that I'm off my soap-box back to the finance discussion ;).

You can never do a complete comparison between different countries. There are financial implications but each person has to prioritize his/her issues.

The simple answer is that people with high incomes will see more of their paycheck in America. My relatives live in Manitoba (that's a province in the middle of Canada :P) The tax rate is 47% above $60K. Most Canadian provinces have actually been lowering their tax rates because high-income individuals have traditionally moved to America (engineers, doctors, lawyers). They also have a considerable use tax, 15% in Manitoba for any sales purchase.

I personally find the quality of life in Canada much better for middle-income individuals. The national health care system, unemployment insurance, maternity leave and other social support system. What's hard to put a price on is (a) the lower crime rate in Canada and (b) the atrocious winters in Canada. It comes down to a personal choice.

My choice is to live in America since I have a high-income job and can choose to live in a beautiful weater area (Bay Area). I am seriously considering a move to Canada once I hit ER. There are many benefits to having considerable American savings and living in Canada, especially if you can access their health care system (I can because my wife's Canadian and will probably still want to work half-time).

Mike

cute fuzzy bunny 07-25-2004 07:24 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
I for one have made all my comments with tongue firmly in cheek, and it appears to me to be the same for most of the others.

Not to mention I'm half canadian and have spent quite a few pleasant vacations there from vancouver to prince edward island.

Do we have to add "no sense of humor" to canadian traits? ;)

Perhaps all that invasion planning, waiting in line three weeks for a flu shot and walking 3 miles in 20 foot deep snow 365 days a year from their igloos to the ice fishing shack makes them grumpy. ;D

John Galt 07-26-2004 03:29 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
This has come up a couple of times (that my posts
don't necessarily pertain to the question at hand).
I plead guilty as charged! See, I read 'em fast and
respond fast so I'm bound to miss stuff or just go off
on a tangent. I humbly apologize to all. However,
it ain't gonna change. My brain is bubbling 24/7
(pretty scary) and it's gotta come out. Pity the poor wife. An example: this morning I was watching the
preparations for the Democratic Convention and asked
my wife "Where is Osama Bin Laden now that we
really need him?" She was not amused. I don't care.
Egomania is wonderfully liberating in that way :)

John Galt

Hyperborea 07-26-2004 07:58 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Obviously, the difference in 'violence' between Tulsa & Calvary [sic] has nothing to do with quantity of people. I suspect, if you look at the demographic differences and the demographics of the 'violence' you might get a clue. But, bashing Uncle Sam is more fun for the Kanuk Kook Kontigent than having a klue.
Oh yeah, "demographics". (nudge, nudge, wink, wink) I think we got your seKret Koded Klue.

Zipper 07-26-2004 02:29 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
GDER???? re your 8:05 AM response? Do you guys always hit the bottle that early? :'( Most Canadians I know usually wait 'til mid-afternoon. :P

John Galt 07-26-2004 03:29 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
My wife frequently reminds me that it is always
cocktail hour somewhere in the world.

John Galt

babyApe 08-01-2004 07:49 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
xxxx

nfs 08-02-2004 09:12 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

If I become a resident of Canada do I have to move my investment accounts to Canada so that I don't have to pay taxes in the US?
You do but not for tax reasons.

If you live in Canada, the securities regulators in every province want to protect you from rapacious thieves overseas. Brokers and mutual funds are considered part of the class. To protect innocents from them, Canadian regulators require the brokers and funds to register with the commissions. Canada is such a small market that most cannot be bothered.

A few years ago, there were nasty spats between regulators and brokers. First the SEC (the US SEC) started fining Canadian brokers for continuing to do business with Canadians resident in the US. To keep things level, the Canadian regulators started fining US brokers for doing business with Canadian residents.

The end result: Brokers stopped doing business with residents of the other country.

The moral: If you want to keep dealing with your current broker after you move, make sure that you keep a US address. Realize that, if you ever become dissatisfied with either a broker or a fund, you won't be able to switch.

Because of the hideous tax consequences, there are exemptions for retirement accounts. Regular IRAs and 401(k)s can be left in the U.S. You can even change the address to a Canadian one and nothing will happen, except that you create a problem for yourself if your taxable account is at the same institution as the retirement account.

Roth IRAs are a pain because the tax treaty doesn't mention them. Income and realized gains are taxable in Canada. If you are planning to move, stick with vanilla accounts.

If you have kids, don't open any education plans for them. Again the tax treaty will cause you grief.

Living trusts are another snare. Canadian tax authorities hate overseas trusts as much as the IRS hates overseas trusts. Don't complicate your life if you plan to move.

Enough bad news. Here's some good news. Canada steps up the basis for investments when you enter the country. The treaty specifies that capital gains are only taxable in the country of residence. So, if you have a million dollars in unrealized capital gains on securities, you can move from the U.S. to Canada, sell the lot, and pay not a nickel to either country. :)

Hyperborea 08-02-2004 09:29 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
The catch on the capital gains though is if BabyApe is in fact an American. If he is then the US government has its claws into him essentially for life. Yeah, he can renounce his US citizenship but the IRS will likely continue to demand taxes for the next 10 years and he will also need a visa (which may very well be denied) for any visits to the US. If he was a green card holder and was such for 8 of the last 15 years then they've got him too. The US is one of the only countries in the world to tax their citizens no matter where they live.

Expatriation tax info:
https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small/...=97245,00.html

Note that there are "exceptions" but these only allow you to ask for a ruling that you get out of paying the expatriation tax. There is no guarantee of success and it will likely cost around US$10K for the ruling.

This means that even if Canada doesn't tax those gains the US government will. The tax treaties prevent double taxation but you generally get hit with the highest tax and the lowest deductibles of either country.

Hyperborea 08-02-2004 09:37 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Regular IRAs and 401(k)s can be left in the U.S. *You can even change the address to a Canadian one and nothing will happen, except that you create a problem for yourself if your taxable account is at the same institution as the retirement account.
Any information on which IRA providers are willing to do this? I've heard some stories of problems from those who've left the US and returned to Canada from folks on the Grasmick board (https://grasmick.com/board/?topic=topic2). Any ones to avoid? Any that you've heard are good about this? How about Vanguard?

Thanks

nfs 08-02-2004 11:17 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

The catch on the capital gains though is if BabyApe is in fact an American. If he is then the US government has its claws into him essentially for life. ... This means that even if Canada doesn't tax those gains the US government will. The tax treaties prevent double taxation but you generally get hit with the highest tax and the lowest deductibles of either country.
Quite true. The treaty allows it. Poor USians - slaves to DC in perpetuity. Four years of civil war to abolish involuntary servitude and they still end up with ... involuntary servitude.

Quote:

Any information on which IRA providers are willing to do this? ... How about Vanguard?
I use Waterhouse without incident with a Canadian address. I know a fellow who uses Schwab but I'm not sure he isn't having his mail forwarded to him. I wish I could use Vanguard but they hate Canadian accounts. On the telephone, the fund arm seems more willing than VBS, but it makes no difference for most people. Buy a fund or funds, move to Canada, and you can never switch again. Selling is fine but they won't let you buy anything because "it would be a violation of Canadian securities laws." Damn government.



R Murf 10-25-2004 11:58 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
We are comtemplating ER abroad - either Canada or New Zealand (weather obviously a factor for 2 Southern Californians).

Any advice on how to look into whether Canada "welcomes" early retirees, any income/asset requirements and how long it takes to qualify for health care. I understand some places - like NZ are so popular they really don't want retirees, just younger workers. We hope to take our SoCal home equity and buy a place outright and use our pensions, etc, for living expenses. Thanks!

Hyperborea 10-25-2004 01:51 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Any advice on how to look into whether Canada "welcomes" early retirees, any income/asset requirements and how long it takes to qualify for health care.
If you are able to become a permanent resident then you have access to the health care depending on provincial rules. Some of the provinces have a 6 month waiting period after you establish/re-establish residency. So, even a Canadian from birth who returns after many years away will not be covered for the first 6 months. You need to make sure that you have health care coverage through personal insurance for that time.

As to whether Canada welcomes retirees I think that the answer is no. Depending on how old a retiree you are then you might be able to immigrate. You would need to be a young enough retiree to look like a possible worker. The Canadian immigration system uses points with more being better and the points you get for age starts decreasing around your late 40s.

Check out this site - https://www.cic.gc.ca/english/immigrate/index.html

nfs 10-25-2004 03:51 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

We are comtemplating ER abroad - either Canada or New Zealand (weather obviously a factor for 2 Southern Californians).
While Canada has a fierce weather reputation, coastal BC is more moderate than much of the US. It's hardly going to compete with California weather though.

You may be surprised by New Zealand's weather. It's a very cool country, much cooler than most people expect.

Quote:

Any advice on how to look into whether Canada "welcomes" early retirees, any income/asset requirements and how long it takes to qualify for health care. I understand some places - like NZ are so popular they really don't want retirees, just younger workers. We hope to take our SoCal home equity and buy a place outright and use our pensions, etc, for living expenses. Thanks!
Use hyperborea's link re immigration rules. The investor class is a bit of a laugh: Lend C$400k to the feds interest free for 5 years and we'll let you in. If you can stand that sort of hit - the equivalent of selling Canadian passports for about a hundred grand - it's not unthinkable.

Hyperborea was slightly off on the health care rules. In fact, no province makes you wait more than 3 months after you arrive. If you're concerned, you can buy private insurance to cover the gap. Blue Cross charges $6.60 a day for those between 50-64, so 3 months runs about $600 max.

Hyperborea 10-25-2004 03:58 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Hyperborea was slightly off on the health care rules. *In fact, no province makes you wait more than 3 months after you arrive. *If you're concerned, you can buy private insurance to cover the gap. *Blue Cross charges $6.60 a day for those between 50-64, so 3 months runs about $600 max.
Ok. I thought that one of the prarie provinces did or perhaps I've mixed up the 6 months out of the country to lose coverage with the amount of time to regain coverage. I didn't want to imply that the cost to get alternate coverage was huge but to warn that you need to get some. I've known of somebody who didn't and was surprised to learn that they weren't covered.

nfs 10-25-2004 04:38 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

investor class
As an aside, this may be completely unnecessary. Try taking the skilled worker assessment. For example, having a master's degree, a spouse with a master's degree, a command of English, and 4 years of work experience gets you a 67/100, which is a passing mark. There are bonus points if you're under 53 or know some French.

BabyApe 08-08-2005 05:51 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
xxxxxxx

Ed_The_Gypsy 08-09-2005 12:39 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
I am a Yankee Dog [actually, I prefer Great Satan] working up here in northern Alberta, though my home base is in the States.

Maybe this will help:

You may find this Canadian mag interesting:

https://www.moneysense.ca/planning/rrsp/

They have the usual drivel about actively managed funds and stock-picking (gotta make a living and ads pay for the magazine). However, they have picked up on Scott Burns' Couch Potato (among others) Portfolio and have picked Canadian equivalents to Vanguard funds (lowest fees, indexes, types). They may also suggest discount brokers, but can't swear to it. Read it on-line. They had an interesting scheme whereby one buys the least popular RRSP investment category for the most recent year (published information) and the returns beat the market.

A fellow expat friend suggested TD Canada Trust for banking and it has served us very well. They have on-line banking and I can pay bills on-line (I paid my Canadian taxes this way this year). They offer a cross-border account which includes a US dollar account. My paychecks are direct-deposited to the CDN$ account. I pay bills and living expenses by debit card or credit card in CDN$. My wife goes on-line, moves CDN$ to the US$ account (exchange rates are small, but I don't remember what they are off-hand) and writes checks on it deposited to our US bank to pay the US mortgage, etc. Warning: Arrange in advance for your local US bank to NOT put a 10-day (or whatever) hold on your check. Establish a relationship with your local branch manager. My US accountant told us to do so and made the introdudction to the bank manager for us. EZ. By the way, it also reduces the exchange rate costs to have a local (CDN$) credit card.

TD Canada Trust also owns TD Waterhouse (may be in the process of selling it though), which used to be Price Waterhouse. I could also buy and sell shares and mutual funds through them on-line on the same web site [but I don't--all my investments are in US mutual fund companies, most with Vanguard].

As far as moving up here, there is a labor shortage in Alberta these days [summer, 2005], and it gets "worse" (depending on your point of view) the further north one goes. (I am almost at the end of the road. To go much further north, one must wait until the lakes freeze.) Most kinds of engineers, designers, drafters, craftsmen (beware of union issues here, though; check first) are in short supply. A US engineer can come here very easily under NAFTA. An agency can set this up for you. Look for jobs here:
https://jobs.workopolis.com/

Alberta is the lowest tax province in Canada. It may well have a lower tax burden than many US states (not mine, though).

I like Calgary but I like Edmonton a little more (when I can get down there). Drumheller is a small town that looks like a good candidate for low-cost living, perhaps retirement. Bears investigation. Where I live has no ants, cockroaches, termites or rats (Alberta has no rats!). There are mosquitos (sp?), black bears, wolves and moose. Wait until you see what a moose can do to a vehicle that hits it. Summer days are long but winter brings -40 days. Dress for it.

The medical system is affordable, but problematical. It is a sacred cow and a national treasure. Don't dis it to a native.

I have the option of becoming a Landed Immigrant and from there a Canadian citizen. It does have its attractions, but this late in life I have other plans.

At this point, I pay Canadian taxes like a local. If I were clever and had more time to look into it, I could start a corporation and avoid more taxes, but I don't.

The US dollar has been falling against the Canadian dollar for a couple of years. As I am paid in CDN$, I get a small raise from time-to-time. Could be worse. :)

I do not have all the answers myself to retiring up here. You pretty much have to become a Landed Immigrant and go from there, and that takes time.

I enjoy living and working here. You do have to expect anti-American vitriol from time to time from people with no manners (there are enough here). A Canadian once said that anti-Americanism is the state religion of Canada. Show some class and ignore it or turn the discussion to local politics. It isn't hard to put them on the defensive if you know the local stuff.

Canadians read a lot, smoke a lot and drink beer a lot. Another Canadian (Peter Jennings) just died from lung cancer, but the news doesn't tell that he smoked hard until just lately.

But I digress....

More when I know more.

Gypsy


MRGALT2U 08-09-2005 06:26 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ed_The_Gypsy
More when I know more.

Gypsy


Thanks Gypsy. I would say the same, but I know it all already. :)

JG

BabyApe 08-09-2005 02:23 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
xxxxxx

bosco 08-09-2005 11:39 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AltaRed
I've been disappointed at the bias of some of the Americans in here, and ignorance of what is comparable and not comparable between the 2 countries.

This surprises you? What do you expect from a country that considers Fox News to be "fair and balanced" and the patented intolerance of Rush Limbaugh to be worthy of air time? That for "religious" reasons, considers gays to be subhuman?

Quote:

Originally Posted by AltaRed

Each country has some pluses and minuses, but on balance there is little difference.

I find there to be a huge difference. Americans love to ballyhoo about how they are the best, the greatest, the most free.....yet they die sooner, have higher infant mortality, have 10 X the people incarcerated per capita, more murders, and fewer rights (except the right to blow each other away with handguns) than Canadians. They would prefer to step over bodies in the street than part with a nickel of extra tax for health insurance. George Bush basically threw a tantrum at the level of funding proposed for Africa at the last G8 summit (those bodies won't be in OUR streets....). Americans buy the corporate BS left and right, elect elitist right wingers, and actually buy the line that cheaper Canadian drugs are not safe. Which is good, because if the mass yankee market were allowed to get at Canadian drugs, we'd have to pay much more for them ourselves.

Of course there are exceptions, but they seem more and more in the minority--but look at who they elect for leaders. The root of the problem is that they have lost their free press, and are too apathetic to care or even notice.

Quote:

Both Canucks and Americans could learn FIRE from each other if they chose to. It's obvious the American posters in this thread don't.

When's the last time you observed an American learning anything from a "foreigner?" In fairness, it does happen, but it is not typical. Look at how they love to bash the French. Why? Because it's easier to bash them than consider that they might be right to have refused to participate in an illegal invasion. If you're a yank, it's not enough to be good. You have to be the best. Even when you're not. If you think you're the best, what can you learn from inferiors?

nfs 08-10-2005 11:50 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by BabyApe
Could any of you canadians offer some advice on which brokerage (bank?) to use for a guy who normally likes Vangard?

I use BMO's discount broker, Investorline. I do that because I bank at BMO and it makes it dead easy to shift money back and forth. Banking elsewhere, you might want to use that bank's discount arm. The services and fees are pretty comparable. You might want to ask on a forum with more Canadians. Try this for example.

Quote:

Are there any good investment books specific for Canadians that explain RRSPs, Canadian Pension Plan, Employee Pension Plans etc.
It's hard to find everything in one place. Try the Ring forum for specific questions.

BabyApe 08-10-2005 02:15 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
xxxxx

Zipper 08-10-2005 02:33 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Whatever happened to Hyper? ???

Jarhead* 08-10-2005 04:38 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Zipper
Whatever happened to Hyper? ???

He moved To Washington D. C. and is now working for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. ;D

haha 08-10-2005 06:40 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ex-Jarhead
He moved To Washington D. C. and is now working for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. ;D

LOL. Where he is now engaged in actively recruiting Bosco, another man with a gift for diplomacy.

Haha

bosco 08-11-2005 08:51 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by HaHa
Where he is now engaged in actively recruiting Bosco, another man with a gift for diplomacy.

I'm angling to replace John Bolton--isn't "plain talk" the rage in Washington these days? ;D ;D ;D

MRGALT2U 08-11-2005 09:36 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by bosco
I'm angling to replace John Bolton--isn't "plain talk" the rage in Washington these days?* ;D ;D ;D

I wish this were literally true.

JG

Nords 08-11-2005 11:20 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Zipper
Whatever happened to Hyper? ???

He's one of the few formerly-active posters that didn't transition from the old board to the new.

You're the first person to mention his absence since the end of April...

REWahoo 08-11-2005 11:24 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Nords
He's one of the few formerly-active posters that didn't transition from the old board to the new.

So...Dory & BMJ moved and didn't leave him a forwarding address? ;)

REW

AltaRed 08-13-2005 01:29 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
babyape, I am a Canadian who is now an ex-pat in USA for past 4 years. I've been a learner of financial savvy for about 5 years now. The financialwebring is a good Cdn forum/discussion board to participate in. The main players are very financial savvy and knowledgeable. They lean to being indexers or passive investing versus active investing. Some of them are associated with the financial services industry and understand the ins and outs.

You will find the Cdn financial services industry is not as competitive as in the USA and thus fees are generally higher. It's just a fact of life for a smaller country and a protective Canadian government who does not want to upset the big financial establishments and open the borders to cutthroat competition.

I used to use ETrade Canada for several years and think they are about as good as any discount broker. Because they are independent, they may offer a larger variety of investment opportunities, at least for mutual funds. They were not the place for buying bonds (if at all). I cannot attest to them now because I left Canada 4 yrs ago and thus could not trade any more with a Cdn brokerage (US SEC has stupid rules about US residents using a foreign broker).

I think most discount brokers will be similar in fees and service. But do ask on the financialwebring discussion board.

Ed_The_Gypsy 08-14-2005 01:56 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
More from up north.

This link is under "Emigrating to Canada".

https://www.workopolis.com/content/re...ans/index.html

It may be useful.

Cheers,

Great Satan >:D

BTW, when Unclemick2 wants to become a popsicle, tell him to bring two bottles and I will put him up for the night. Come early and we can go icefishing and watch the northern lights (an incredible sight, incidentally). Afterwards I can feed him to the bears. (Recycle, re-use.) Ft McMurray has the biggest black bear problem in Alberta. Oh, yeah--they will be sleeping. OK, how about wolves? They are up all night. Bring crawfish.


LiveWell 08-16-2005 11:55 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by bosco
This surprises you? What do you expect from a country that considers Fox News to be "fair and balanced" and the patented intolerance of Rush Limbaugh to be worthy of air time? That for "religious" reasons, considers gays to be subhuman?

I find there to be a huge difference. Americans love to ballyhoo about how they are the best, the greatest, the most free.....yet they die sooner, have higher infant mortality, have 10 X the people incarcerated per capita, more murders, and fewer rights (except the right to blow each other away with handguns) than Canadians. They would prefer to step over bodies in the street than part with a nickel of extra tax for health insurance. George Bush basically threw a tantrum at the level of funding proposed for Africa at the last G8 summit (those bodies won't be in OUR streets....). Americans buy the corporate BS left and right, elect elitist right wingers, and actually buy the line that cheaper Canadian drugs are not safe. Which is good, because if the mass yankee market were allowed to get at Canadian drugs, we'd have to pay much more for them ourselves.

Of course there are exceptions, but they seem more and more in the minority--but look at who they elect for leaders. The root of the problem is that they have lost their free press, and are too apathetic to care or even notice.

When's the last time you observed an American learning anything from a "foreigner?" In fairness, it does happen, but it is not typical. Look at how they love to bash the French. Why? Because it's easier to bash them than consider that they might be right to have refused to participate in an illegal invasion. If you're a yank, it's not enough to be good. You have to be the best. Even when you're not. If you think you're the best, what can you learn from inferiors?

Heh, and some posters were saying the differences between Canada and the US are small ;)

I'm also a Canadian living in the US temporarily. There's nothing quite like leaving your homeland to make you suddenly appreciate it.

-LiveWell


bosco 08-16-2005 10:39 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by LiveWell
Heh, and some posters were saying the differences between Canada and the US are small ;)

I'm also a Canadian living in the US temporarily. There's nothing quite like leaving your homeland to make you suddenly appreciate it.

-LiveWell


I thought it was interesting about a year ago when CBC had a poll of who the "greatest Canadian of all-time" was. The winner--Tommy Douglas. The architect of Canada's health-care system and a socialist. That election to me spoke volumes about the differences in values between the two countries. I find it ironic that it is precisely Canada's health care and social systems that makes ER possible in Canada without needing the huge assets that some of the posters on this board have. Yet many of these same posters will deride the taxes, and "liberalism" of Canada. I'm glad that "liberal" is not a dirty word in Canada (well, aside from the Liberal party itself, for some--but the fact that it is an acceptable name for a party is what I'm getting at, whether you like the party or not).

In the US, the winner of an election like that would have probably been Ronald Reagan, or Rush Limbaugh. Someone like Tommy Douglas would have never won such an election or even had a political career for that matter, after being crucified by the US "liberal" press. 30 years ago, it might have been won by JFK, or Martin Luthor King Junior, but those days are gone with the "Reagan revolution."

Ed_The_Gypsy 08-17-2005 12:01 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
I was up here in Canada when that poll was taken. There was no question Tommy would win, and rightly so. The Canadian health care system has many merits. However...it is a sacred cow, like SS is to us. Never criticize it up here. Don't even question it.

It doesn't produce health care on demand, as it would if the patient were paying for it. The system rations health care according to criteria, resulting in waiting lists. Life-saving procedures have priority over elective procedures--such as hip replacement. Productive members of society might have priority over non-productive members--except that convicts and refugees seem to have higher priority than retirees. These are deductions arrived at by reading the newspapers.

There is fierce reaction to the idea of allowing access to private-practice medicine. This is seen as a two-tier system and the public system would suffer loss of financing and support if there were an alternative. In practice, there is a two-tier system since people are free to cross the border and be treated in the US--at their personal expense. Since most of Canada's population lives within 50 miles of the border, distance is not much of a barrier. I just read that ten years ago, the number of medical schools in Canada was cut way back, with consequences today.

In the balance, it would be a good thing for my family at this time, but I probably won't take advantage of it due to certain inconveniences at the moment.

Just my observations and irreverent opinions.

Ed


bosco 08-17-2005 08:43 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ed_The_Gypsy
The Canadian health care system has many merits. However...it is a sacred cow, like SS is to us. Never criticize it up here. Don't even question it.

I hear a lot of questioning and complaining about it. The one thing common to all the complaining, however, is the focus on improving it. You are correct that no one wants to end it for a private care system....they have an example just to the south on what a mess that can be.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ed_The_Gypsy
Life-saving procedures have priority over elective procedures--such as hip replacement.

Is this praise or criticism ??? Seems logical and humane to me

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ed_The_Gypsy
Productive members of society might have priority over non-productive members--except that convicts and refugees seem to have higher priority than retirees.

Seems logical, except for maybe the convict part (remember that the same is true in the US. Also rememeber that there is 1/10 the convicts PER CAPITA in Canada than in the US).

At any rate, the system certainly has room for improvement. And no question that it is costly and part of the reason taxes are higher.

But something is working about it, since Canadians live on average a couple of years longer than Americans, and have a lower infant mortality rate.

Another factor that comes into play in Canada--lawsuits, although on the rise, are much less prevalent than in the US. This means savings because doctors don't have to do quite so many CYA tests that really are not necessary.

maddythebeagle 08-17-2005 06:14 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
I get care at the Mayo Clinic for a somewhat rare condition. When we drive through the parking lot we make note of all of the license plates and we often see Canadians there and folks from all over the country and the world. From what I read the u.s. and canadian health care systems both have serious flaws.

MRGALT2U 08-17-2005 06:19 PM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by maddythebeagle
I get care at the Mayo Clinic for a somewhat rare condition. When we drive through the parking lot we make note of all of the license plates and we often see Canadians there and folks from all over the country and the world. From what I read the u.s. and canadian health care systems both have serious flaws.

My mother and my brother have been treated at Mayo Clinic for serious
conditions. I told DW that if I ever had a bad health problem.........that's
where I'd want to go.

JG

Martha 08-18-2005 07:36 AM

Re: ER for Canadians
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by bosco

Another factor that comes into play in Canada--lawsuits, although on the rise, are much less prevalent than in the US. This means savings because doctors don't have to do quite so many CYA tests that really are not necessary.

That is in large part because the loser pays the winner's attorney fees.


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