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Thursday, February 25, 2016

Better news! Liberals introduce bill to repeal many Conservative citizenship changes (G&M)

Read the entire article here

The Liberal government has introduced a bill that would repeal many parts of the former Conservative government’s citizenship legislation, including a provision that revoked citizenship from dual Canadian citizens convicted of terrorism, treason or espionage.

The proposed changes would automatically reinstate citizenship for one individual whose citizenship was revoked last fall before the election under the Conservatives’ Bill C-24, according to department officials speaking on background Thursday. That individual was charged with terrorism and is currently serving their sentence in a Canadian prison, said the officials.

In last year’s election, the Liberals promised to repeal the controversial legislation, which gave the government the power to revoke Canadian citizenship from dual citizens convicted of terrorism, treason or espionage, and dual citizens who were members of an armed force of a country or members of an organized armed group that was engaged in a conflict with Canada.

“I am very pleased to announce these changes which are entirely consistent with the promises we made during the election campaign and on which we as a government were elected,” Immigration Minister John McCallum said Thursday.

The proposed changes are in line with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s comments in a heated election debate about citizenship last September, where he said “a Canadian is a Canadian is a Canadian.”

When this bill passes, which it will, I will be immediately eligible to apply for Canadian citizenship!

Now if they would be thoughtful enough to reduce the current $530 application fee back to the $100 it was before the Tories got their hands on it. To put this fee in context, for a Canadian permanent resident earning a minimum wage, this is nearly 2/3 of an entire month's pay. It's hard enough to make ends meet on a minimum wage, so let's lower this barrier to entry. It was another Tory mechanism to reduce applications and another example of Harper's evil intent to control the complexion (literally) of this nation. We are better than that.  

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Great news! Liberals to repeal Bill C-24 on citizenship: Immigration Minister (G&M)

The Globe and Mail reports (entire article):

Immigration Minister John McCallum says the government will announce significant changes to the Citizenship Act in the coming days.

Mr. McCallum said Tuesday that the Liberals will soon follow through on their election pledge to repeal the Conservatives’ controversial Bill C-24, which gave the government the power to revoke Canadian citizenship from dual citizens convicted of terrorism, treason or espionage.

Asked when the changes will be unveiled, Mr. McCallum told The Globe and Mail to expect an announcement “in coming days, but not very many days.”

During last year’s election campaign, the Liberal platform committed to “repeal the unfair elements of Bill C-24 that create second-class citizens and the elements that make it more difficult for hard-working immigrants to become Canadian citizens.”

Mr. McCallum said the government’s announcement will make it impossible to revoke citizenship.

“A Canadian is a Canadian is a Canadian,” Mr. McCallum said, repeating a line used by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau during a heated election debate last September. “We would not revoke people’s citizenship. … That will certainly be a part of it [the announcement],” the Immigration Minister added.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Uncle Sam is a greedy leech

I have lived in Canada for over four years. I do not collect any benefits from my former country, The United States. The only things in my life that have meaning in association with it are I pay taxes and vote.

The US must tie these two acts together - taxes and the right to vote - because the country was founded on the concept that taxation without representation was evil. That's why they split from Great Britain. But I would argue that I have no voice in American politics. My issues do not matter to politicians. My home state of Washington is not busy insuring that expats from their state are treated fairly.

But the US wants to tax whatever they consider revenue that I make here in Canada, even if Canada doesn't consider it revenue. That means tax-free savings, retirement paid into Canadian retirement plans and any gains made on property. And what the US may tax in the future from expats is not fixed. It can change in an instant. As of this year, they are forcing Canadian banks to report on US citizen accounts so they can be sure they are getting everything they want.

I am taxed, but I am NOT represented. The US, unlike any other "free" nation in the world taxes you for life as long as you are a citizen. And they also make renouncing that citizenship expensive, time consuming and perilous.

The basic fee to apply to get rid of the burden of citizenship in the US is over $2,000. The wait time can be over 10-months. The exit fees include paying estimated taxes on future earnings. And they will estimate that those are, by the way.

They threaten that it may be harder to enter the country once you give up your citizenship. Like, who would do that kind of thing? Give up US citizenship? It makes them suspicious. You must be a threat now. We have to think twice about letting you in.

Frankly, it's nothing but a cash grab by those powerless to fight against it. When I become a Canadian citizen, I will have to revisit whether it makes sense to retain my citizenship. The only long term benefit will be social security. But I'm sure they'll tax that to the point of uselessness too.

The greedy leech keeps sucking.  

Read the Globe and Mail article about the issue here