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Why Does Canada Feel more Developed Than The USA

Why Does Canada Feel more Developed Than The USA a question asked by a Quora Community User: The question goes like this:

"If USA is wealthier than Canada, why does Canada feel more developed (far cleaner cities, a lot less crime, fewer homeless people, significantly higher life expectancy)?"
Why Does Canada Feel more Developed Than The USA

Kelly Meilleur Has the best answer:

Dual citizen here (CDN/USA).

I will try to explain Canada.

There is an entirely different sense of right and wrong in Canada. Canadians are democratic. (Not just a democracy; there’s a difference.)

That means they are happy to pay taxes - big taxes - so that they have the resources they need in their neighbourhoods. They don’t need to earn big money to be able to afford a house in a good school district or private school tuition in order to ensure a good k-12 foundation for their kids.

Their children do not need to take on hundreds of thousands of dollars of debt for an undergraduate or professional degree at a good school. Some Americans think that the Canadian education system is of poor quality because it’s not privatized and it costs so little out of pocket for everyday citizens.

That’s simply not true. It costs less because the entire population of the province funds it. And if the province comes up short one year, the Feds send money to make up the difference. I earned a graduate degree ten years ago under one of the top scholars in my field and my tuition was $800 CDN, three times a year. I could stand on a conference podium with anyone from Columbia, or Brown, or NYU and hold my own.

As someone else mentioned, there is much less wage disparity in Canada. Unions are still strong in Canada. And therefore the gap between rich and poor is narrower.

No one will go bankrupt in Canada if they get cancer. There is no such thing as paying for medical treatment. So there’s no worry about money for treatment, only about the illness. People aren’t penalized for having pre-existing conditions. Canadians know that being a human being is a pre-existing condition, so they generally don’t fault folks for that.

Canadians see health care, gender and sexual orientation parity as human rights - not privileges. Once abortion and same sex marriage was brought in (what, 20 years ago?) it was no longer of national concern. Canadians do not care who sleeps with whom. They care about the Stanley Cup. Canada just legalized cannabis because they felt it was the right thing to do. There was no big outcry. They’ve moved on since.

It’s much more difficult to sue your neighbour over nonsense or an employer for discrimination. So they are a less litigious populace. Rightly or wrongly.

Canadians do not feel the need to keep weapons in their home to defend against the government. They do not see government or taxes as a burden or a threat to their well being or safety. They see them as an integral part of citizenship. That’s what I mean by saying that Canada is a democratic country and not just a democracy.

There’s less need to feel like they have to chase after everything all the time or they will fall into ruin. People can become unemployed and not have to worry about losing health coverage. They can still see the doctor if needed.

The same doctor they saw when they were employed. They get unemployment insurance payments. They get housing if they need it (not the Ritz, it’s not an easy process, but it’s still shelter - and it doesn’t have to do with the weather. It has to do with the social safety net that all Canadians feel OK about - including paying taxes to keep it in place for people they do not know and will never meet.)

America is wealthier, no doubt. There’s much more innovation here. More of an entrepreneurial spirit. So much easier to animate new ideas and break into careers. Wonderful, booming economy. The health care system is much easier for some here.

But much more difficult for many others. There’s not as much willingness to pay to help people if it doesn’t involve a personal benefit that’s immediately obvious. More individualistic, as someone else mentioned. But who is actually benefiting from this individualism? Are the majority of regular individuals benefiting? I’m not so sure.

Canada measures its “wealth” differently. I think Canada counts financial security for all as a sort of background noise type of wealth - public wealth for private need in rough cases. I think that brings people a sense of calm and safety. Feeling calm, safe, cared for via their own hard-earned tax dollars, and part of a grand community on a local and global scale - perhaps that could help explain longer life expectancies.

I deeply love both countries for who and what they are, but I think they could each be a little more like the other.

More Answers:

Why Does Canada Feel more Developed Than The USA

Why Does Canada Feel more Developed Than The USA

Why Does Canada Feel more Developed Than The USA

Why Does Canada Feel more Developed Than The USA

Why Does Canada Feel more Developed Than The USA

Why Does Canada Feel more Developed Than The USA

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