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UW Election Eye 2012

Campaign 2012 through the eyes of UW faculty and students

Topic: Canada

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October 10, 2012 at 6:30 AM

“ObamaCare” or affordable health? – A Canadian perspective

In the debate on the Obama administration’s health care policy, the term “socialized medicine” surfaces often, with fingers pointed to Canada. A Canadian national living in Seattle weighs in on her health care experiences, both in Canada and the United States.

Tea Party demonstration in St. Paul, MN. (Photo by Fibonacci Blue, Flickr Creative Commons)

SEATTLE – What’s in a word?

When it comes to describing President Obama’s Affordable Healthcare Act, much is suggested by conservative use of the term “ObamaCare.”  Even a newly-arrived visitor to this country would find the controversy obvious.  As a Canadian living in the U.S. now for many years, I have always found American attitudes toward healthcare perplexing.  My career has focused on healthcare systems in both countries, so I find the phenomenon of American hostility to “socialized medicine” even less understandable.

Have I been everlastingly grateful to flee the purported queues in the land of my birth and avail myself of the high-tech healthcare available in the U.S.?

Not so much.

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Comments | More in Health Care Reform, National | Topics: Canada, Obamacare, socialized medicine

May 25, 2012 at 8:43 AM

Drug smuggling, immigration and federal enforcement push border town to the brink

Richard Sinks, spokesman for the Blaine sector of Border Patrol, stands in front of the Peace Arch along the U.S.-Canada border. (Photo by Celina Kareiva / UW Election Eye)

Marijuana legalization and immigration are debates that impact every community in Washington. But for residents of a small city on the Canadian border, these issues hit especially close to home.

LYNDEN, Wash — The border between Washington state and Canada is demarcated by two parallel roads surrounded by long stretches of farmland.

As a boy, Gary Vis can remember darting through this area to a fishing hole where he and his friends used to spend summer afternoons.

“It was that easy to cross into Canada,” recalls the executive director of Lynden’s Chamber of Commerce.

Vis grew up among the raspberry fields and dairy farms of Lynden, WA. A small border city just south of Canada, Lynden was once known for having the most churches per square mile worldwide. Tulips fringe the sidewalks of the downtown square, and storefronts capitalize on the city’s Dutch heritage.

But behind this quaint facade is a city complicated by its proximity to the border.

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Comments | More in State | Topics: border, Border Patrol, Canada