10/09/2013 01:19 pm ET Updated Jan 23, 2014

Canada: A Refuge From Poisonous Politics in U.S. (Thank Heaven!)

Don't you wish you were in Canada right about now?

You don't?

OK, why not?

It's still safe to turn on the news up there now. Believe me, it's a blessed relief not to have to see John Boehner, Tenn. Cong. Marsha "Michele Bachmann Wannabe" Blackburn, Rep. Louie "Gomer" Gohmert, or any of the 40 or so Tea Party numskulls from far-right Congressional districts in places like Indiana and Georgia who are currently holding millions of Americans hostage during their prolonged temper tantrum.

If you want to see a political system that isn't broken and dysfunctional, go to Canada.
I wrote about this subject a few months ago in HuffPost's Canadian edition, but in these dark days, it's important to also let Americans know that things aren't like this in other civilized countries.

And it certainly isn't like this next door.

Robin Williams certainly had a point when he recently said on national TV, "Canada is like a really nice apartment over a meth lab."

I've worked for major Canadian newspapers, and I've covered Canada for years for such news outlets as, and I'm in lovely Vancouver, B.C., every month.

Trust me. It's not like this in Canada. Canadians, who live in a civil, decent society, are shaking their heads at what's been going on down below them in the U.S.

Familar Turf
It wasn't nearly this bad in the U.S. politically when I moved to Montreal years ago. Nixon was President, and it was a politically polarized time.

But it wasn't as poisonous as it is today. (Thanks largely, I would argue, to the venomous Fox News).

I was amazed then when, overnight, my wife and I didn't have to deal with the ugliness coming from Washington, D.C.

Bottom line: Even the most conservative Canadian parliamentary riding (district) is well to the left of some of the clueless, mean-spirited Red districts in the U.S.

Canada just doesn't produce the kind of morally corrupt, utterly contemptible and loonie political "leaders" we have here in the U.S.

I'm glad my son, who is a Canadian citizen (born in Montreal) and his family don't have to endure the current disgraceful, mean-spirited conduct of the Parliament of Whores (U.S. Congress). They recently moved to Vancouver from Portland. Canadian politics, just like Canadian society, is just not as contentious and nasty.

But alas, most Americans -- liberal and otherwise -- know little about Canada (or any other country). They don't have any idea about how civil society is in our northern neighbor, which has moved well beyond us in such critical areas as national health insurance (single payer is now 52 years old), immigration, banking regulation, and gun control.

No Boehner. No Paul Ryan. No Limbaugh. No Fox News.


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