Things You Should Consider Before Moving to Canada

Unless you rip up that passport, Uncle Sam will never leave you alone. Neither will Rush.


Get it??? ||| Matt Welch
Matt Welch

With the #NeverTrump vs. #NeverHillary cage match now settling in for a gruesome 140-day stretch, we are officially in threaten-to-move-to-Canada season. As such, it's important to start thinking through your move. For instance, did you know it's cold up there? Also, if my recent trip to downtown Toronto is any guide, you had better enjoy sports bars (including the cleverly titled one pictured to the right). And those bars play so very much Canadian classic rock, because of cultural protectionism….

More on point, what I was chagrined to discover is that Canada's Border Services Agency is ramping up on secondary screening for politically motivated yankees leaking across the northern border. It's payback time, baby! And, as I write in today's Los Angeles Times, you cannot truly escape the ramifications of America's dumb politics unless you're willing to rip up that passport altogether. Excerpt:

There are two countries on this whole planet that require federal income tax filing from its nonresident citizens. Eritrea, not particularly known for its good governance, is one of them. Uncle Sam's the other.

It gets considerably worse from there. Because of a putrid 2010 law called the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA for short, because Washington legislators are nothing if not subtle), U.S. citizens and their spouses who hold more than $10,000 total in non-American financial institutions must file annual disclosures listing the maximum exchange-rate value of each and every such account during the previous year. If you don't comply, you face steep fines and even jail time.

Ostensibly aimed at fat cats, this law instead has punished the majority nonrich among America's estimated 8.7 million expatriates. Not only does FATCA impose costly paperwork on individuals, it also requires overseas financial institutions to act as Washington's international collections muscle, mandating that they seize and transfer to the IRS 30% of deadbeat Americans' assets. To the surprise of no one who understands basic incentives, foreign banks have been dropping American clients like sacks of flaming garbage.

Read the whole thing here. Reason on Canada here, FATCA here.

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  1. The French don’t make any good beer that I’m aware of, but the best beer in Canada is made by the frog-talkers (Unibroue brewery).


    1. The French have the Germans and Belgians next door… Canada has Budweiser and Coors next door.

      1. As a SamAdams drinker,I object.

        1. Sam Adams/Yuengling are the two largest American beer companies.

          MolsonCoors, SABMIller, ABInbev are all foreign.

      2. Coors is a Canadian country.

        And Budweiser is next door to France, as it is a Belgian company.

        1. Coors is a Canadian COMPANY.

          1. Coors is a Canadian PERSON.

            Aren’t they/it/ze?

    2. Nah. Look up the Wikipedia article “beer in France.” Lots of good stuff there. My fave is Pelforth Brune.

      And Unibroue is the shizzle.

      1. Kronenberg 1664 is a pretty good lager.

        1. It’s the “aged 352 years” part that cinches it 🙂

        2. Yeah, I like that stuff.

          I was in France last summer when it was absurdly hot and it was just the thing.

    3. The beer brewed almost in the shadow of the CN tower was arguably worse than Budweiser.

    4. I had some pretty OK French lager last year when I was there. But nothing too remarkable.

    5. Unibroue brewery

      Pronounced “uni-brow?”

    6. There is a reason home brewing is popular and Canada.

  2. “To the surprise of no one who understands basic incentives, foreign banks have been dropping American clients like sacks of flaming garbage.”

    So working as intended…

    1. I’ve actually had all the paper completed on a new bank account and was handing it over to the the bank lady when she finally noticed my American passport. Sore wa, chotto muzikashii desu ne. Tried 3 other banks and the same response. MFers.

  3. The Toronto Blue Jays have one of the worst bullpens in baseball this year

    Hey, that’s unfair! Against the Orioles yesterday, they pitched a 19-hitter.

    1. And from Comments.

      If this was intended to be a serious piece, the author is mentally incompetent. If is was intended as satire, he is devoid of any writing skills. The fact that one is left to wonder indicates the woeful depths that the LA Times has plumbed.

      1. Tough, but fair.

        1. Tough, but fair.

          Take pride in your enemies. Which I’m sure you do.

      2. You can tell it’s a serious response because there’s no follow-on paragraph explaining where Welch went wrong. Thanks, booday.

        1. there’s no follow-on paragraph explaining where Welch went wrong

          Not necessary. Welch is a libertarian, and all goodthinking people know that libertarians are always wrong. No explanation necessary. IT IS KNOWN.

    2. Well the O’s have some bats this year and are number 1 in the AL East. But they will blow it after the all-star break like always.

      1. It’s a problem when you only have one first-rate starting pitcher.

  4. You think I’d move to Canada? Like living under Prime Minister Zoolander would be any better than living here under Trump or Clinton.

    Is there an island we can all chip in and buy, and just start our own country (with blackjack and hookers)?

    1. It won’t be better than here. It will be like a bizarro looney toons version of here and colder.

    2. I’m all in.

    3. “Is there an island we can all chip in and buy, and just start our own country (with blackjack and hookers)?”

      I’m all in.

  5. And Mike Holmes will come fix your house.

    1. That dude is Canadian?

      I never picked up on it.

    2. the work he does in Canada would never pass code in California some of it doesn’t even pas the IBC but you know he’s on TV so he knows what he is doing just like the unlicensed Bob Villa who just turned 70.

      1. the unlicensed Bob Villa

        Even as a kid I noticed that Bob Villa never did any of the actual work on This Old House. All he did was walk around with a camera crew and randomly interrupt the actual contractors doing the real work to have them explain to the TV audience what they were doing and why.

  6. Jesus! Move to fucking Somalia before Canada.

    1. I wouldn’t go that far, but I would definitely find somewhere warmer. So pretty much anywhere.

  7. My brother is a naturalized Canadian citizen now – married a Canadian *shudder* and had two kids with her.

    But he still retains his US Citizenship and has to do taxes for both countries. He was selling an e-book on Amazon, but pulled it once he figured out how complicated it would be to add the income to his taxes. He’s thinking of pulling his US citizenship to make his life easier.

    1. The Founders are spinning in their graves.

    2. Well, Canada, like a lot of Euro countries, is one of Murika’s lapdogs, so this is what you get.

    3. Hopefully not a French Canadian.

    4. married a Canadian *shudder* and had two kids with her

      So, the floppy-head thing… how does it work with crossbreeds?

      1. They have normal heads, but they apologize about EVERYTHING.

    5. Just set up some kind of dummy corporation in one country or another for the proceeds.

  8. Gavin McInnes did a whole show on how to move to Canada if Trump wins.

    1. Just returned yesterday from a vacation in Nova Scotia. It is indeed cold (most of the time the temperature was in the fifties–that’s low teens for the fahrenheitally challenged).

      Folks there were eager to talk about Mr Trump, and a couple of folks told us about this:

      Didn’t make it to Cape Breton this time, but it’s true that it’s beautiful, and the lobster’s pretty cheap. Halifax is absolutely booming–five or ten large apartment buildings under construction right in the center of downtown.


      1. I’m sure those places are much nicer than the town I live in, (Tallahassee) which is set up like a bunch of Marxist city planners who graduated from FSU but had such low GPAs they couldn’t get a job in a real city, bukkaked a map of the town. And I know that the Hufftards are just blowing smoke and none will really move to Canada. But I can’t get over the cold weather.

        1. Like Gavin mentioned, they’ll need a sponsor. Are there that many Canadians who want even more derp by inviting half of America’s progs to live there and fuck up their country even worse? Once the progs get there, they will whine and complain about everything incessantly. You’ve been warned, Canadians.

          1. SHHHH!

            If they move up there, that means there’ll be fewer of them down here whining and complaining about everything incessantly.

    2. That was great. Good ol Gavin, you can always count on him to mansplain the derp.

  9. Also, if my recent trip to downtown Toronto is any guide, you had better enjoy sports bars…

    But not winning Stanley Cups.

  10. Rush doesnt exist anymore.

    It makes me sad, but it was time.

    Switzerland used to be my backup country (as the only other country I used to live in), but then they went and joined the UN.

    1. I’ve looked at Chile

      1. Costa Rica might not be too bad.

        1. Yep.

          Cost of living is going way up there, though.

        2. Plus they have that whole velociraptor issue to worry about.

          1. Having a few old Soviet RPG 7’s on hand should take care of that.

        3. Panama should be on your shortlist. Check out the NW, around Boquete.

          I was there after the Big Dump im ’08. Looked at a lot outside Boquete that I would have bought if it hadn’t been subdivided by a one-eyed mongoloid. It had a spot where you could look east and see the Atlantic, and West and see the Pacific. Unreal, and probably almost completely unique.

          I like the Panamanians, a lot. But the country was still a little too Third World for Mrs. Dean.

          1. Boquete is very beautiful I hear, and that mountainous region has a sort of ‘choose your climate’ feature, which works by living at a specific elevation.

            Panama is very expensive, but they use the dollar and a lot of people speak English, and they already have a large English speaking expat community. It’s on my list of places to go, but I think it’s just too expensive for a retirement choice.

          2. $400k in investment property gets your family St Kitts citizenship. And a nice house to live in.

    2. But they don’t want you.

  11. Obcanteen? I don’t get it.

    1. Does he have to spell it out for you? It’s an anagram of ‘cant be one’.

      1. I don’t get it either. Why is the little girl pretending to be a samurai? Why is the hotdog attacking a saxophone player? Canada is stranger than Japan.

  12. Eritrea, not particularly known for its good governance

    I think that’s terribly unfair. Sure, they’ve had their problems. Constant war with your neighbors will do that.

    The demonization campaign is built around two Big Lies: one, that Eritrea’s system of national service ? a form of draft, which is the right of all nations ? amounts to “slavery”; and two, that domestic oppression in Eritrea is a prime source of African refugees to Europe, with the tiny nation allegedly accounting for more cross-continental emigration than every other country except war-ravaged Syria.

    National service in Eritrea, as in many other countries, includes not only military duty on the front lines with Ethiopia ? which still occupies parts of Eritrea in clear violation of an international arbitration agreement ? but also labor in public works projects as well as service in health and education infrastructures. (Most teachers in Eritrea, for example, are national service workers.) Lots of folks would call that socialism or nation-building ? which is how the Eritreans see it.

    If they could afford drones like you rich whiteys, this wouldn’t be a problem!

    1. You know what other country shares a contentious border and instituted a national draft to people its armies and national projects…

      1. Israel? (Pro tip: Its always the Jews)

    2. Eritrea’s system of national service ? a form of draft, which is the right of all nations

      As so often, the gap is so vast between their worldview and mine I wouldn’t even know how to start.

  13. If you want to move out of the country, why would your first choice be Canada?

    That wouldn’t be my first choice of country to consider.

    I would look to someplace like Panama before Canada.

    1. English-speaking first-world nation near enough to visit, which they fantasize implemented their utopian policies.

      1. If I’m looking for an exit, Ireland seems like a better choice. English speaking, decent tax rates, plus good beer and whiskey.

        1. EU member.

          You’ll be flayed alive by Brussels’ policies.

        2. But the weather is the shite.

          1. And all the fecking poetry.

        3. Good beer? You jest, sir. I lived in Limerick for a year and a half. Fucking beer desert. Not a single cask beer on tap in the whole place – only decent beer was in bottles.

          And their best whiskey can’t touch a decent Scotch.

          And 40% income tax over ?38k. And 23% VAT. And the weather’s shite.

          But the friendliest people you’ll ever meet, so there’s that.

    2. As a pale northerner, you guys with your preference for jungle humidity over yes cold winters but beautiful summers is alien to me.

      1. Around Boquete, you can pretty much dial in the microclimate you want by picking what elevation you want. Its kind of unreal. In this area, you probably want air conditioning. Drive a few miles that way, and you really don’t. That kind of thing.

        You can get by in Panama without Spanish, but personally, if I was moving there, I’d learn Spanish.

      2. I spent a summer in Ontario when I was in college. It planted a secret dream in my head to someday retire rich enough to maintain a Canada summer home and a Texas winter home. I’m sure there are better substitutes for either of those (Cali + Montana ranch would be nice if Cali wasn’t becoming Idiotland), but yeah, point is, southern Canada is pretty nice in the summer.

        1. What do mean Cali becoming idiotland?

          The train arrived at that station a long time ago.

  14. Welp, guess it’s time to build a wall and make the snowbacks pay for it.

    Also, Welch didn’t touch on the true reasons that Toronto sucks, such as their actually important terrible sports team, the weird smell that seems to be a permanent part of the downtown, and the horror that is Toronto WASPs.

    Least the roads are better than Montreal.

    1. I’ve always liked Toronto the many times I have visited – of course I was living in Rochester or Buffalo at the time.

    2. The true horror is the male business costume — darkish suit, pressed white shirt, no tie, unbuttoned, on narrow shoulders. As a look on its own, it’s not terrible, if a bit 50 Shades of Greyish. But as a UNIFORM you see EVERYWHERE, it is just like A Wrinkle in Time, without the red ball.

  15. But sitting at one of Toronto’s roughly 1,000 sports bars is a grueling reminder that Canada’s Broadcasting Act, which requires that at least one-third of the content at commercial radio stations emanate from musicians with maple leafs in their passports, is a make-royalties program for the Rushes of the world.

    As with extra u’s everywhere, the Canuckistanis don’t know how to pluralize the word leaf. PROPER NOUN, MY ARSE.

  16. 1. It’s Canada
    2. It’s Canada
    3. It’s Canada

  17. So I’m thinking that if I’m looking for a country to escape to, Ireland looks like a good option. English speaking, good beer and whiskey, and a somewhat healthy economy especially for IT workers. Any thoughts on that one?

    1. Another positive: sexy accents. Possible downside: rampant Catholicism. (Though the seminarians I’ve spent time with have been much more bearable than the SJWs I’ve talked to.)

      I hadn’t heard of it being a good place for IT workers before. If that’s true it’ll definitely be one of the countries I check out, should I need to move.

      1. While it’s not exactly Silicon Valley, Eire does have a rep as a decent place to outsource IT work. The workers speak English, and didn’t go through diploma mills.

      2. Another positive: sexy accents.

        Ew. You really think leprechauns talk sexy?

    2. Haven’t really heard of Eire being an IT mecca, but it is one of the better-performing Euro economies. Cons include government SJW-ness generally on par with Scandinavia, somewhat expensive cost of living, and a long trip to reach the vacation spots of continental Europe. On the other hand, Iceland is a short hop if you’re one of those weirdos who think that’s a nice place to vacation.

  18. There is, sadly, really nowhere to go that is freer in practice than the US. We know it’s possible to have great personal freedom while also having security and a strong economy, because it’s been done before in history. It’s just not being done by anyone today.

    So you end up with, stay and fight. Which is bracing, if a hard life.

  19. Another reason to reconsider your Canada plans:

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