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A Canada/US merger?


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I guess people missed things like the SPP as a key point in the NAU.

This is part of the reason you have the cross border agreement where US cops can arrest up in Canada and vice versa. Integration is already underway and had been going on for I'd say a few decades.

Remember the EU took 50 years to get together. The US/Canada merger will be done quicker as you only have 3 countries in North America to combine.

It's already happening.

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What's to be gained...easier cross border shopping for Canadians ? Far more likely is that Canada will fragment along regional and language fault lines.

Why just so we can buy cheap Chinese products for even less? Shopping at places like Walmart does not help anyone but China.

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Isn't there a difference between what citizens of a country want and what the elite, including the politicans want or what is good for the country? The politicans said "free trade" was going to be good for the country and it turned out it was good for the corp. world but not necessarily good for those workers who lost their jobs. IF there was a merger, do you really think that there would be two separate capitals? No, the USA would make it ALL their own down the road, no matter the cost of prisons for those who try and fight to stop it, both Canadian and American. This is like man-made medication, it maybe good for you,but the side effect can harm or kill you. IF this is such a good thing, when the time comes, IF it comes, why not let the people of both countries decide and not the governments or corporations.????

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So... a few questions: don't most people believe in things when they have something to gain from it ? If they think it's good for the country as a whole, isn't that something to gain from it ? People voted for Free Trade with America, was that because they had something to gain from it ?

And isn't there something to be gained on some level ? Even if you don't agree in the overall benefit ?

Right but in these case anything that could be gained from it could be gained from agreements between friendly sovereign states. And negatives for Canadians are so massive... we would basically be giving up control of our biggest economic asset (our natural resources).

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Right but in these case anything that could be gained from it could be gained from agreements between friendly sovereign states. And negatives for Canadians are so massive... we would basically be giving up control of our biggest economic asset (our natural resources).

I think the term "our" is interesting, as it implies that Canadians own Canadian natural resources. How much foreign ownership is there today ? What are the restrictions against such ownership ?

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Foreign ownership is very low and thats true globally not just of Canada. But we do lease access to resources to foreign corporations in exchanges for royalties, tax revenues and jobs.

At least though in theory we have some control because our elected government controls it all. What you are proposing would reduce our "ownership" of these resources and the political control we have over them by 90%.

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Right but in these case anything that could be gained from it could be gained from agreements between friendly sovereign states. And negatives for Canadians are so massive... we would basically be giving up control of our biggest economic asset (our natural resources).

If you read my post earlier, I gave several benefits from a merger. The only one that could be done without the merger is the monetary union (and perhaps the military union as well). See the below quote. In addition, a merger doesn't necessary imply that Canada gives up it's natural resources. Do provinces within Canada not have some control over their natural resources? Alberta and Newfoundland over their oil, Quebec over hydro, etc.?

Indeed there are many benefits for merging including:

- Using economies of scale to have a smaller and more cost effective national government. We will not have to duplicate various government departments by having 2 countries instead of 1.

- Merging of countries will significantly remove most regulatory trade barriers. While we have had a free trade agreement for decades, there are still many trade barriers that cannot be entirely removed simply due different regulations and the fact that we are different countries. Indeed price differences for various items are still quite high across the border (cross border shopping remains popular) and a lot of it has to do with retailers setting 1 price for Canada and 1 price for the USA. Also, how many times have you tried to watch an online video, only to be told you cannot watch it due to being in Canada? (ComedyCentral, HBO, Hulu, etc.)

- Taking advantage of economies of scale should lead to a more cost effective military and better security. Admittedly though, the Americans really need to reduce their military expenditures if they want to get serious about the deficit. Also, i'm sick of how difficult it has become to cross the Canada-US border due to all the security checks.

- Single currency will make transactions much easier. No longer will you have to go to a bank and exchange your currency when going to the other part of North America.

- Single North American Citizenship should greatly increase labour mobility. This increased Labour mobility will allow people in low employment areas to move to high employment areas, therefore increasing North America's employment rate and GDP.

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If you read my post earlier, I gave several benefits from a merger. The only one that could be done without the merger is the monetary union (and perhaps the military union as well). See the below quote. In addition, a merger doesn't necessary imply that Canada gives up it's natural resources. Do provinces within Canada not have some control over their natural resources? Alberta and Newfoundland over their oil, Quebec over hydro, e

A monetary union would be a pretty big mistake in my opinion. Canada has a nationalized central bank... all of its shares are owned by the public and vested and held by the minister of finance. I cant imagine why we would want to give that up and submit to the private federal reserve system.

Single currency will make transactions much easier. No longer will you have to go to a bank and exchange your currency when going to the other part of North America.

You havent had to do this for many years. My RBC bank card works as well in the US as it does in Canada. It works in the south of france as well. The ease of transactions is a simple problem to tackle that does require any merger.

- Merging of countries will significantly remove most regulatory trade barriers. While we have had a free trade agreement for decades, there are still many trade barriers that cannot be entirely removed simply due different regulations and the fact that we are different countries.

Some of those trade restrictions are there because they benefit North American workers. The US has more illegal immigrants than Canada has citizens. I dont see how we would gain from this at all, and I see a whole lot of ways that we could lose.

- Taking advantage of economies of scale should lead to a more cost effective military and better security. Admittedly though, the Americans really need to reduce their military expenditures if they want to get serious about the deficit.

For Canada that would simply mean increasing the percentage of GDP spent on defense while decreasing the ammount spent on other things. We lose under this scenario.

Also, i'm sick of how difficult it has become to cross the Canada-US border due to all the security checks.

I fly between the US and Canada constantly and I face the same security checks flying between Newyork and Portland as I face flying between Vancouver and Denver. A merger wont change any of this.

The best option for Canadians is to maintain sovereignty and control of our natural resources and sell them to the highest bidder, and control our own banking and monetary policy. This approach has lead a relatively tiny county to enjoy one of the highest standards of living in human history.

And this is exactly what we are going to do, and what Canadians want.

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A monetary union would be a pretty big mistake in my opinion. Canada has a nationalized central bank... all of its shares are owned by the public and vested and held by the minister of finance. I cant imagine why we would want to give that up and submit to the private federal reserve system.

Canada has a 'nationalized' central bank? I'm not sure what you mean. Canada's central bank is independent of government control much like it is for the US, UK, EU, Japan and, the entire developed world and then some. This is done so that politicians do not abuse the Phillips curve to temporarily boost employment to get re-elected (at the expense of the long run inflation rate) by lowering interest rates.

Canada's monetary system is practically identical to that of the US (though I believe the Bank of Canada's target long term inflation rate is half a percent. lower than the target of the US, correct me if I am wrong). Our monetary policy has been nearly identical for 20 years (do you need me to provide a link for nominal interest rates vs time for both countries for the past 20 years and perform a regression to prove very strong correlation?), as our economies are so interrelated and correlated. As a result, loss of the ability to independently set interest rates is not an issue when the other country has the same interest rates.

Side: On the topic of optimal currency areas, a few Canadian economists are arguing that Canada might be better off with 2 currencies rather than 1 (one for eastern Canada, one for western Canada), to avoid the issues of dutch disease.

You havent had to do this for many years. My RBC bank card works as well in the US as it does in Canada. It works in the south of france as well. The ease of transactions is a simple problem to tackle that does require any merger.

While the costs of changing currencies can be reduced, they cannot be eliminated entirely for an economy over all. The banks will still charge a fraction of the value of the money when a currency is converted, it remains an inconvenience for many people, and as long as there are 2 currencies, Canada & US has economic resources allocated towards transaction costs that could be allocated elsewhere.

Some of those trade restrictions are there because they benefit North American workers. The US has more illegal immigrants than Canada has citizens. I dont see how we would gain from this at all, and I see a whole lot of ways that we could lose.

Oh yay, a non-sense protectionist argument. You might as well be arguing the Earth is flat or that evolution is false.

Reducing trade barriers allows countries to specialize production in where they have a comparative advantage, allowing both countries to be better off overall by producing more goods and services. Sure some inefficient unionized worker might be worse off (if they do not adapt), but that isn't enough to justify the benefits to consumers and to producers elsewhere in the economy.

That said, the trade restrictions I was referring to are not ones that are intended to be there to 'protect inefficient domestic industries'. I was referring to regulatory trade barriers. Canada and the US have different domestic laws, meaning that if a company or individual in Canada or the US want's to export goods and services to the other country, they have to comply with the other country's laws; this costs time and money and results in many (usually small) companies staying on only one side of the border resulting in less competition.

For Canada that would simply mean increasing the percentage of GDP spent on defense while decreasing the amount spent on other things. We lose under this scenario.

The fact that US spends more money per capita on military is not a problem inherent in the idea of a merger, it is a result of the current political situation in the United States. You keep referring to present political problems in the US today, as if those problems will always exist and as if there isn't going to be significant political and demographic change in the US in the coming decades. Canada, US and the entire world are becoming closer due to globalization and the internet. I'm not arguing for a merger to take place tomorrow, I'm arguing that something like a merger in 50 years time that takes place gradually with the democratic support of the people can be a good idea. There are inherent benefits to a merger (removal of regulatory trade barriers, taking advantage of economies of scale, reduced transaction cost, smaller overall government, etc.), while there are no inherent disadvantages in a merger that cannot be overcome in a few decades with political change. And because of these inherent benefits, there exist merger possibilities that can mutually benefit both countries (not saying all mergers are mutually beneficial, but some are). Economies of scale increasing the cost effectiveness of military remains an inherit benefit of a merger.

I fly between the US and Canada constantly and I face the same security checks flying between Newyork and Portland as I face flying between Vancouver and Denver. A merger wont change any of this.

The fact that a merger will not reduce the time/cost to cross the border in some cases doesn't mean that it will not reduce the time/cost to cross the border in all cases. Learn basic logic please. There remains situations where a merger will make it easier to cross the border, thus increased labour mobility remains an advantage of a merger.

The best option for Canadians is to maintain sovereignty and control of our natural resources and sell them to the highest bidder, and control our own banking and monetary policy. This approach has lead a relatively tiny county to enjoy one of the highest standards of living in human history.

Again, Canada doesn't necessarily lose it's ability to control and/or benefit from its resources in a merger, that depends entirely on how the merger is done. Again, I refer to my example of Canadian provinces having some control over their resources despite all being in the same country; and this is not unique to Canada (ex. Scotland benefits from offshore oil revenue, etc.).

Anyway, can you at least admit that there exist at least some possible ways to do a merger such that it is mutually beneficial for both countries given the inherent benefits of a merger that I listed? If not, can your arguments be applied to justify Quebec, Texas and California to become independent countries? If your insist that a merger can never be mutually beneficial and are also against Quebec, Texas and California separatism, aren't you just irrationally supporting the status quo?

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Canada has a 'nationalized' central bank? I'm not sure what you mean.

I mean its owned by the Canadian people. The US Federal Reserve is a consortium of 12 private banks, and can do whatever it wants. Congress wasnt even allowed to look at its books until a year or so ago.

While the costs of changing currencies can be reduced, they cannot be eliminated entirely for an economy over all. The banks will still charge a fraction of the value of the money when a currency is converted, it remains an inconvenience for many people, and as long as there are 2 currencies, Canada & US has economic resources allocated towards transaction costs that could be allocated elsewhere.

All this "money" is nothing more than electronic records on a computer. Theres no reason these transactions need to cost anything at all, with or without a merger.

That said, the trade restrictions I was referring to are not ones that are intended to be there to 'protect inefficient domestic industries'. I was referring to regulatory trade barriers.

Its up to people in Canada and the US to decide if they want these things are not. But if any of them are causing serious trade bottlenecks that can be addressed without any merger.

Anyway, can you at least admit that there exist at least some possible ways to do a merger such that it is mutually beneficial for both countries given the inherent benefits of a merger that I listed?

All the things you listed could be addressed without any merger.

If not, can your arguments be applied to justify Quebec, Texas and California to become independent countries?

That would be up to the people that live in Texas, California, and Quebec.

The fact that US spends more money per capita on military is not a problem inherent in the idea of a merger, it is a result of the current political situation in the United States. You keep referring to present political problems in the US today, as if those problems will always exist and as if there isn't going to be significant political and demographic change in the US in the coming decades.

US military spending per capita has been much higher than ours for many decades. I dont see any sign of that changing.

But obviously if you cobble together enough "what if",s you could manufacture a hypothetical future where a merger might be possible or make sense. But so what? We could just as easily end up with a future where it makes even less sense than it does now.

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I mean its owned by the Canadian people. The US Federal Reserve is a consortium of 12 private banks, and can do whatever it wants. Congress wasnt even allowed to look at its books until a year or so ago.

If you've been paying attention to Congress lately, I think you might agree that the less things congress is allowed to do, the better. Someone should certainly be checking their books, but congress is a pack of clowns.

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If you've been paying attention to Congress lately, I think you might agree that the less things congress is allowed to do, the better. Someone should certainly be checking their books, but congress is a pack of clowns.

Well... they are the body named in the constitution to control coin and credit. I never wrote the damn thing! :P And I assume Americans voted these people into office...

But this is just another reason why a merger is a bad idea. Canada is far from perfect but we have a tiny little boat that seems to float ok. Probably not a fanastic idea to moore ourselves to the titanic 1000 yards away from a large iceberg.

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I mean its owned by the Canadian people. The US Federal Reserve is a consortium of 12 private banks, and can do whatever it wants. Congress wasnt even allowed to look at its books until a year or so ago.

Completely wrong. The Bank of Canada is a Private Crown Corporation; technically the minister of finance owns the bank. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bank_of_Canada

The 12 banks you are referring to are not private for-profit banks, they are non-profit Federal Reserve District Banks that operate in 12 different districts that are headquartered in Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Richmond, Atlanta, Chicago, St. Louis, Minneapolis, Kansas City, Dallas, and San Francisco. They are responsible for a variety of tasks which you can read about here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federal_Reserve_Bank

That said, the banking systems in Canada, the US and the entire developed world are essentially the same. Ignorance or false claims caused by internet myths do not change this fact.

All this "money" is nothing more than electronic records on a computer. Theres no reason these transactions need to cost anything at all, with or without a merger.

Purchasing storage space costs money. Bandwidth costs money. Electronics cost money. Hiring people to oversee currency exchange and those transactions costs money, and time. Making consumers have to deal with multiple currencies is inconvenient to them and costs time. No matter how you spin it, there are transaction costs that result from having 2 currencies. Economists have estimated the size of these transaction costs in a number of ways. Do you need me to link you to some studies to show this, or are would you be too economically illiterate to understand them? Just because you want to live in a fantasy land where things you do not like become magically free to satisfy your political dogma, doesn't make it true.

Its up to people in Canada and the US to decide if they want these things are not. But if any of them are causing serious trade bottlenecks that can be addressed without any merger.

1. If you want to make claims, could you at least justify them with evidence or argument? 2. I'd prefer not to use the term trade bottleneck (unless you want to clearly define it and justify its usefulness). The only thing that should matter is if something is damaging to trade and therefore ultimately damages the mean standard of living on both sides of the border. Regulatory trade barriers exist, and while they can be reduced (by harmonizing certain laws), they cannot be completely eliminated without a merger. My point still stands (refer to previous posts on examples I gave; no point retyping them just because you want to ignore them and pretend they do not exist).

All the things you listed could be addressed without any merger.

Again, random claim without any justification what so ever. If you tell yourself a lie enough times does it come true?

That would be up to the people that live in Texas, California, and Quebec.

Indeed it would, but that isn't an answer to my question. I asked if Canada and the US should remain separate, then why shouldn't Canada and/or the US split up into smaller countries? And if you do not think that Canada and the US should split up, then aren't you irrationally in favor of the status quo? I guess that the 49th parallel and some lines drawn on a map hundreds of years ago are somehow magically optimal.

US military spending per capita has been much higher than ours for many decades. I dont see any sign of that changing.

There are 2 very good reasons why this could change. 1. US has a huge and growing debt that needs to be addressed. 2. US public opinion is changing (if you read online opinions or polls).

But obviously if you cobble together enough "what if",s you could manufacture a hypothetical future where a merger might be possible or make sense. But so what? We could just as easily end up with a future where it makes even less sense than it does now.

Just because there are two possibilities does not mean that they have equal probability. The US and Canada are far more likely to become more similar (politically) as time goes by. Why? Globalization and the internet is bringing everyone closer together. Americans and Canadians communicate with each other more then every before, share ideas with each other more then ever before, follow each other's politics more than ever before. The US is becoming slowly more democratic and the demographic trends do not favor traditional-conservatives at all. Heck in a few years Canada (along with Australia and New Zealand) will become a republic once the current monarch dies (going by opinion polls), making Canada more similar to the US.

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Completely wrong. The Bank of Canada is a Private Crown Corporation; technically the minister of finance owns the bank. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bank_of_Canada

The 12 banks you are referring to are not private for-profit banks, they are non-profit Federal Reserve District Banks that operate in 12 different districts that are headquartered in Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Richmond, Atlanta, Chicago, St. Louis, Minneapolis, Kansas City, Dallas, and San Francisco. They are responsible for a variety of tasks which you can read about here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federal_Reserve_Bank

That said, the banking systems in Canada, the US and the entire developed world are essentially the same. Ignorance or false claims caused by internet myths do not change this fact.

Purchasing storage space costs money. Bandwidth costs money. Electronics cost money. Hiring people to oversee currency exchange and those transactions costs money, and time. Making consumers have to deal with multiple currencies is inconvenient to them and costs time. No matter how you spin it, there are transaction costs that result from having 2 currencies. Economists have estimated the size of these transaction costs in a number of ways. Do you need me to link you to some studies to show this, or are would you be too economically illiterate to understand them? Just because you want to live in a fantasy land where things you do not like become magically free to satisfy your political dogma, doesn't make it true.

1. If you want to make claims, could you at least justify them with evidence or argument? 2. I'd prefer not to use the term trade bottleneck (unless you want to clearly define it and justify its usefulness). The only thing that should matter is if something is damaging to trade and therefore ultimately damages the mean standard of living on both sides of the border. Regulatory trade barriers exist, and while they can be reduced (by harmonizing certain laws), they cannot be completely eliminated without a merger. My point still stands (refer to previous posts on examples I gave; no point retyping them just because you want to ignore them and pretend they do not exist).

Again, random claim without any justification what so ever. If you tell yourself a lie enough times does it come true?

Indeed it would, but that isn't an answer to my question. I asked if Canada and the US should remain separate, then why shouldn't Canada and/or the US split up into smaller countries? And if you do not think that Canada and the US should split up, then aren't you irrationally in favor of the status quo? I guess that the 49th parallel and some lines drawn on a map hundreds of years ago are somehow magically optimal.

There are 2 very good reasons why this could change. 1. US has a huge and growing debt that needs to be addressed. 2. US public opinion is changing (if you read online opinions or polls).

Just because there are two possibilities does not mean that they have equal probability. The US and Canada are far more likely to become more similar (politically) as time goes by. Why? Globalization and the internet is bringing everyone closer together. Americans and Canadians communicate with each other more then every before, share ideas with each other more then ever before, follow each other's politics more than ever before. The US is becoming slowly more democratic and the demographic trends do not favor traditional-conservatives at all. Heck in a few years Canada (along with Australia and New Zealand) will become a republic once the current monarch dies (going by opinion polls), making Canada more similar to the US.

:lol:

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There is no secret that Western Canada has been hit by a recent spate of high-profile accidents involving trains. Not long ago, for instance, the increased rail traffic here has been blocked because of rather severe accident, happened 22 miles from US border.

The matter is that in my duty bound I was cooperating with investigators, and they've told me that all recent accidents in this region they link with growing seismic activity of neighboring Rockies' zones, where Americans are actively developing their shale gas reserves. Even US scientists have linked a rising number of quakes in current Rockies with using the hydraulic fracturing as the main method of extracting shale gas there. The matter is that it is extremely dangerous for seismic stability of the whole region of Rockies, including their Canadian part!

Imagine! The number of quakes in American Rockies jumped 11-fold (www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130326151125.htm) now! Obviously, dangerous seismic effects from so-called US fracking technology threaten our Canadian Rockies either. And there is no surprise that the number of railway incidents, happened near these US shale gas mining areas, has increased greatly now! Only our authorities prefer to sidestep facts about them as 95% of local rail incidents have been non-accident releases up till now...

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Diane Francis is dreaming. She thinks the US is going to pay us to join them? :lol:

She's making us look stupid.

No, she's only making herself look stupid. It's called "jumping the shark" when one can no longer be taken seriously.

About as likely as a Quebec-Ontario merger.

That was tried between the early 1840's and the late 1850's only it was called Lower and Upper Canada. I think there was an average of more than one (1) government a year.

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