Should Canadians boycott the USA?

I wrote the following comment at Beating the Index, after Mich asked us what we thought of an oil company operating in Texas:

Hi Mich:
I gave up my US citizenship on February 28 2011, and I am very angry with the United States and its attempt to persecute Canadian residents, about 1 million of us, with extra-territorial taxation and persecution through laws that are intended to attack money launderers, drug dealers, and terrorists. Many innocent Canadians with dual citizenship with the US have become fearful of not even being able to cross the border to visit their families now, and Canada’s finance minister, Jim Flahrety, has told the IRS to back off of innocent Canadians who are not tax cheats.

When you expatriate from a country because you think that the people running it are persecuting you, treating you in an unfair manner, do you think that’s gonna be the first place you would want to invest? I’ve decided to stop even travelling to the US, except for family emergencies where the risk reward ratio makes sense. I did invest in Texas a few years ago, but thanks again to the US Federal government, I was basically fleeced for 70K. No thanks. Never again.

I think EGL could turn out to be a good investment, but with the OWS movement and an administration that wants to tax the rich, is not nationalization of the resource sector not far off? Paint me as paranoid, but the US federal government has caused me great suffering by threatening me, someone who’s lived in Canada now 25 years, I feel like requesting my fellow Canadians to keep their money at home and to boycott the USA until they [the Yanks] can figure out that it is not right to attack innocent Canadians.

Thanks for letting me rant a little. I just think people should know about this.

5 thoughts on “Should Canadians boycott the USA?

  1. The irony of it all. Less than ten years ago, unemployed lefties and enlisted military servicemen were fleeing to Canada to escape the Bush Regime. Now hard working Americans are fleeing to Canada from the Obama Administration. Must be a real mixed bag up North. I think I’ll take my chances down here a little longer.

    • Hi Kauffman:

      Thanks for your comment.

      During the Bush administration, I knew of no one who renounced their citizenship; I think of one time, I heard of in the news, unless memory fails, a single US military person in Canada because of the Bush administration policies regarding the war on terror–compared to the thousands of young men that fled during the Viet Nam War. If you know of more specific cases, I’d be glad to see your sources.

      But now, with Obama running the IRS with his minion Douglas Shulman, thousands of people are lining up to renounce. I’ve renounced. My wife’s cousin wants to renounce (though who knows if they will let her in the consulate where she lives?). A lady I know from Kingston who contacted me on my blog is renouncing. The waiting list in US consulates in Europe or over a year long in some places according to reports.

      There is thus a flood of renunciations; the US has extra-territorial tax policy that is scaring the hell out of people, because they could eventually fine, using their asinine implementation of largely unheard of and seldom enforced laws, every person up to or even exceeding 300% of their wealth. As for Canadians, it is stupid because the tax treaty in US and Canada means that those who duly pay their taxes here in Canada, couldn’t possibly owe the US anything. So I am personally not willing to cooperate further with an evil government, not being able to pay 300% nor being willing to go to prison for obeying the laws of Canada.

      I blame Bush (who signed the Heroes Act in 2008, which created an exit tax), Obama, and Congress. They are dumb, dumber, and dumbest.

  2. Hello Petros,

    It was more or less conjecture on my part that left wingers had left the U.S. for Canada (or wishfull thiinking). But I do remember hearing a lot of rhetoric from Bush haters on moving to Canada. Them actually not going through with it does not surprise me.

    Of the 8000 AWOL soldiers during the Iraq war, the number who fled to Canada I would agree is small.

    What I do find interesting was that of the nearly 1000 people who did renounce their U.S. citizenship in the last ten years was not because of the war, or Bush, or Obama, but because of the IRS.

    • Hi Kauffman:

      Yes it is interesting, but it is higher than now well over 1000 per year now (as opposed to 1000 per decade). In the last quarter of 2009, 500 renounced. If the State Department would streamline the process, it would probably now be in the 10,000 of thousands (my guess) per annum. If you are keeping up, you know, that only recently did they start to enforce requirements that may be reasonable (though still unconstitutional in my view) for US citizen residents but completely unreasonable and a violation of normal privacy rights (4th Amendment) for citizens living abroad. To comply now, within a normal statute of limitations, would require a violation of the 5th Amendment–i.e., to basically admit that you were committing a crime. Amnesty is possible, but only if you want to fork over an unreasonable percentage of your wealth–20-25%–including registered retirement savings, whether or not you were regularly reporting its existence in your yearly tax return.

      So tens of thousands would be saying, “Hell with that!” if they could. But the process is difficult. I had to spend several hours just making an appointment to let them know that I was no longer a citizen (I lost my citizenship when becoming a Canadian I did so with the intent of relinquishing my US citizenship). But if you have to use their services (to renounce in front a consular officer), most consulates make you come back after a couple months, to make sure that you are serious and understand what you are doing; and it is only during your second appointment that they will even let you renounce. So it is a very bureaucratic process, designed to slow down the person wishing to lose citizenship. Consider now, even if I satisfy the State Department and receive Certificate of Loss of Nationality (CLN), I must also file a bunch more paperwork for the IRS and that requires telling them things like my net worth and a itemizing my assets, and there is just no way that I’m going to do that. What the IRS doesn’t know can’t hurt me. That’s my motto. And besides, they will have to come to Canada with guns if they want my stuff now. But apparently IRS agents carry guns in Panama.

      In terms of the recent surge of renunciations, see: Nostate, which quotes a Dow article:

      More Americans Give Up Citizenship As IRS Gets Aggressive Overseas

      By Martin Vaughan, Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES

      The number of American citizens and green-card holders severing their ties with the U.S. soared in the latter part of 2009, amid looming U.S. tax increases and a more aggressive posture by the Internal Revenue Service towards Americans living overseas.

      According to public records, just over 500 people worldwide renounced U.S. citizenship or permanent residency in the fourth quarter of 2009, the most recent period for which data are available. That is more people than have cut ties with the U.S. during all of 2007, and more than double the total expatriations in 2008.

      Read more:

  3. Pingback: Weekend Edition: Target Prices Updated for Hyperion Exploration, Pinecrest Energy and TriOil Resources | | beatingtheindex

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