Skip to comments.Sudden citizens
Posted on 07/21/2006 4:15:33 AM PDT by Clive
I can hear those Canadians of convenience from all the way over in Beirut. Look at me, I'm a Canadian. Look, look, look at my passport. It says CANADA.
And so it does. The people I'm talking about are those passport holders who don't live in Canada, don't work in Canada, don't pay taxes in Canada.
People who have freely chosen to pledge their primary if not sole allegiance to the flag with the cedar in the middle and not the maple leaf.
They are not tourists or emigres caught in the crossfire while on a temporary visit to the Middle East. They're full-time Lebanese, voting with their feet. But now, when the doo-doo hits the fan, these Canadians of convenience are Canadians all the way. No. 1 citizens. True patriot love, glowing hearts, standing on guard and all that jazz.
And Canada ... well, Canada is Canada. The Canadians who live here and pay taxes here and who see here as the place they want to call home not only let the Canadians of convenience hitch a ride out of the lunacy of Lebanon, they pay for it. You pay for it. We pay for it.
We do this because the individuals in question hold Canadian passports and the eggheads choking on their skim lattes say it would be shocking, appalling and insensitive to insist these people pay their own freight, even though they haven't thrown any money into the pot covering the tab for this mass exodus, the biggest evacuation since Dunkirk in the Second World War and a bill expected to be in the hundreds of millions.
Garth Turner, the speaks-his-mind MP for Halton, a riding containing the lovely Ontario town of Milton and parts of Oakville and Burlington, has been one public figure with enough guts to pose a few brainteasers about what is up.
He calls it "waking up and checking the common sense meter."
No surprise. I met Garth in the last election as he knocked on doors of homes on Burlington's Butternut Crescent and the man does not mince his words. He is willing to even challenge the PM if duty calls and his constituents want action.
Well, Garth's constituents are getting in touch with him on this deal.
One local man is in Lebanon with his family, waiting like so many others to get out, and who does he see getting on the ship and getting on gratis? Some folks who live in Lebanon 24/7.
You can see their house from the point of departure.
"We are talking about people, some who went back to Lebanon after the last conflict. They don't pay taxes here, they don't live here, they don't have a loyalty here. We're not their first country. They have a first country," explains the parliamentarian, who describes himself as "just a little soldier asking who passes before they get to the public treasury.
"That's where they have their house, their car, their bank account, their dentist. I ask: You moved out of this country and you're not contributing here. Why would we come and get you? Or why would we do it for free?
"I'm getting a huge reaction, and not from racists who hate people with brown skin. The issue is: What the hell are we doing? People scratch their heads when they hear about 40,000 Canadians in Lebanon. Are there really 40,000 tourists? That's a hell of a lot of tourists."
In fact, many aren't tourists.
Garth says he's heard total bookings to Lebanon from all of Canada for the whole summer is about 14,000 and we're only halfway through the season. Do the rough math.
The MP also says nobody had any idea there would be so many people wanting to leave. No one calculated accurately all the non-residents with Canadian passports.
"We had no idea we would be stuck in this web. And now there's a precedent being set so Canadians who are not even residents can be sent halfway around the world for free."
My husband was a Canadian citizen and holds a Canadian passport but was naturalized as a US citizen a couple years ago.
I guess if there were a "disaster" in our state, we could call the Canadian government and they'd come rescue us. (end/sarcasm)
Maybe because you've set your standards for citizenship so low that virtually anyone setting foot on your soil can technically become a Canadian.
Very interesting, Clive. I've been wondering about yet another facet of citizens with dual citizenship in Canada and the U.S. I suppose they get to vote here even though they don't live here. And, does anyone know whether the U.S. gets taxes from dual cits.?
Please send me a FReepmail to get on or off this Canada ping list.
Note that citizenship does not oblige anyone to pay taxes to Canada unless he or she is resident in Canada or drawing income from Canada.
People who have come to Canada, taken out Canadian citizenship and then returned to their birth country and again become permanent residents there have no obligation to pay taxes to Canada.
But they do have a claim on the protection of Canada whenever they find it convenient to fish out their Canadian passports from the back of the drawer and blow off the dust.
They also have the right to bitch about Canada while Canada is struggling to evacuate them from theor own country.
Yes - my husband has to file his US taxes until he renounces his US citizenship. We don't mind a bit ;)
Methinks both Canada and Australia will be thinking twice about allowing dual citizenship after this. There is even talk here about making such Australians meet their fares back to Australia. I sure hope out government follows through with this.
yeah, but aren't there 60,000 Iranian tourists there too? Funny, but I haven't heard a peep about them being evacuated!
I wonder how many U.S. "citizens of convenience" are the anchor babies of illegal Muslim invaders who returned to their mideast hellholes.
Citizenship which costs nothing is worth nothing...
It's perplexing alright.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.