December 2, 2010

Smug, but nursing that inferiority complex: urban Canada in a nutshell

Filed under: Cancon, Media, Politics — Tags: , , — Nicholas @ 01:28

John Geddes seems puzzled by the apparent contradiction:

Can we settle on the putdown of preference when it comes to right-wingers expressing their disdain for Canada?

They often resort to either of two seemingly contradictory, but equally condescending, lines about Canadians: we are insufferable in our sense of moral superiority, or we exhibit an equally tiresome inferiority complex.

Now, I’m willing to take my lumps, but do they have to come from both directions at once? Can’t you decide if my national ego is obnoxiously over-developed or pathetically under-developed?

I can only assume that Mr. Geddes hasn’t attended too many parties in Toronto or Ottawa. Both psychological maladies are often displayed by the same people . . . sometimes in the same conversation. Torontonians in particular are capable of sneering at vulgar Americans in one moment, then fretting that they don’t pay enough attention to our “world class” city in the next. Short of finding a way of expressing both thoughts simultaneously, I’d say that was a strong indication that urban Canadians can hold both thoughts without an overwhelming sense of contradiction.


  1. Mr. Geddes needs to google “Narcissistic Personality Disorder”. Whether individual or cultural, it oscillates between feelings of grandeur and worthlessness.

    Comment by Flea — December 2, 2010 @ 07:46

  2. You get the same thing with Canadian “health tourists.”

    I had a Canadian in Orlando spend the best part of a half hour telling me how wonderful the Canadian health care system was.

    The reason he was in Orlando?

    To get knee surgery. The hospitals near him in Canada were backed up for over a half a year. So he flew to Florida on his own dime and paid for the surgery himself.

    …and no, he couldn’t see the disconnect between the two points of view.

    We get a LOT of Canadians in Orlando for health care. They fly down, bring the family, send them to Disney, and get treatment for whatever thing they can’t get through their own system.

    Comment by cirby — December 2, 2010 @ 12:27

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