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What is 'an Albertan', anyway?


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Isn't there a law against one line replies or something. Here I am, having been thorougly cowed by the likes of Eureka et al, afraid to post. I have been living vicariously, cheering when a poster chooses "my" line of thought, booing (albeit quietly, don't want to wake the kids) when a poster unknowingly champions exactly what I want to say.

I am sorry. I got the pins out of my hand, and am maybe a little high on percodans. Can't really type yet so this is a labour of love. Please please, resume the argument, in full sentences.

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Sorry what was your problem with 1) Ontario and 2) Canada again? It seems that the answer to exactly what your point was is once again lost (must be me). Its fine to be proud as far as I am concerned, but to the exclusion of your country?

I expect very, very, soon, we all might hear the sonic report of when you are actually able to extricate your head.

I would be more than willing to bet Alberta on a referendum, I believe you sir are in the minority and that most proud Albertans feel no where near the way you do.

We all have regional differences and gripes but I don't believe that all westerners are as militant as you would like to be. Lets leave that for Quebec.

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Shakey, since the day you joined the forum you've displayed your distain for Albertans. Unfortunately I don't think this attitude of looking down your nose at the rest of Canada is unique among central Canadians. Comments like those from Justin Trudeau exemplify the central Canadian attitude who said, referring to the west, "I love spending time in Canada's backyard". But the best illustration of eastern ignorance is the number of government programs and flawed democracy which ignores the west and almost seem to be put in place to intentionally piss off the Alberta. IMO central Canadians are the epitome of what they claim to hate so much about Americans. They're arrogant, brag to everyone that they are the greatest, do what ever they want without considering the effects on others, and think they are the center of the universe. Yet in spite of this, Alberta has managed to lead the country in progress and innovation. It shouldn't be surprise that we'd feel more in line with the US than Central Canada.

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IMR,

Until I joined this forum I had little idea that there were Americans in Canadians clothes living in the west. I do certainly not look down my nose or have disdain for anyone (besides Right Wing Whackos) from Alberta or elsewhere.

As far as any comment Justin Trudeau may or may not have made, when I read that I re3ad into the fact that the west has a plethora of outdoors activities readily available, IOW its a great place to relax and play. Of course someone with a seperatists agenda would be able to twist that to read as a negative. Typical.

The epitamy of this is to hear Klein stand up and start screaming about Ottawa taking away oil revenues, no one said a damn thing about taking anything from anyone, but it fit Kleins agenda.

I suppose that by behaving like Quebec you'll get some attention, good luck with that.

I have never claimed to be greater or anything else, my point is be proud of who you are.. A Canadian.

I also find this quote very interesting

Alberta has managed to lead the country in progress and innovation

thats great, something to be proud of, of course you point it out for why? Who's playing I'm better than you now?

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I guess this thread has pretty much wound down.

In response to my explanation of why "Albertan" to me is not just a geographic area of Canada, I was offered only the somewhat lame "My Canada includes Saskatchewan." And I didn't receive any response to my question about whether BC, like Quebec, is a separate entity within Canada in Sweal's opinion, since by the reasoning he offered earlier it certainly qualifies.

I found August's phrase "superstructure" to be an excellent description of how I feel about Canada.

I'd earlier said I would go back and revisit some of the things posted while I was sick. However, most of it appears to have been gone over since I returned. The one in particular I thought I might address would be this one:

You don't see Manitobans or Ontarians braying such empty rostrums as to be "proud" of their geographic associations in the first place.  You don't see it because appeals to meaningless, imaginary tribalism is not part of their attitude the way it seems to be for (some) Albertans.

The first thing that jumps out at me is "rostrum"... we know you're proud of your thesaurus, Terrible, but in this instance it may have let you down...

The second is that we have indeed turned up instances of Ontarians braying such empty.. uh, "rostrums". None less than Bob Rae himself, for example. August's "google" search for instances of "proud _____" turned up many for other provinces as well. Which supports what I've said earlier- that identifying with one's province is hardly exclusive to Alberta.

But most of all what got me about the message I've quoted was the phrase "meaningless, imaginary tribalism."

I've only really felt like I'd witnessed tribalism once in my life; that was when I went to Canada Day festivities on Parliament Hill when I was in Ottawa. I saw chanting. I saw people wearing war-paint. I saw fanatical devotion to symbols. I witnessed the ritualistic burning of ... (sniff sniff, what's that smell? Peyote?) I saw tribal elders work the mass into a frenzy by shouting tribal slogans.

I have participated in Canada Day festivities in many places (being, as the tag-line says, moderately pleased to be Canadian) ... Vancouver, Victoria, Kelowna, Calgary, Edmonton, and Ottawa... but only in Ottawa did the event take on this sort of ritualistic fervor. I quite honestly found it a little bit disturbing: a rather worrying demonstration of group behaviour.

Likewise, Canadians have often made fun of Americans and their "flag fetish", but during my time in Ottawa I saw evidence of a flag-fetish that far outstrips anything I've seen in my (admittedly brief) visits to the United States.

There isn't really an Albertacentric equivalent of the kind of berzerk nationalist fanaticism I witnessed in Ottawa; and I'm quite thankful of that. Albertan pride, when stated, is generally stated pretty quietly.

Yesterday I saw on TV for the first time a Toyota commercial, presumably hoping to tie in with the centennial, which contrasts the miserable hardships faced by the prairie settlers during the early years, with the vibrant "new west" that's grown from it. It's not an Alberta commercial, as it would play equally well in Saskatchewan, but it's certainly an appeal to prairie people as distinct from Canadians in general; aimed at the belief that people here feel they have a distinct history and identity. It's quite a lovely commercial, and certainly appealed to me in a way that the "empty rostrums" brayed by Tim Hortons and Molson never have.

-kimmy

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The first thing that jumps out at me is "rostrum"... we know you're proud of your thesaurus, Terrible, but in this instance it may have let you down...
As Time Magazine would report: "Pontificated the Sweal."
I found August's phrase "superstructure" to be an excellent description of how I feel about Canada.
It was not mine. It was Robert Bourassa's. It was met with disdain in English Canada and evidence that Bourassa was a 'closet separatist'. (He was not.)
I've only really felt like I'd witnessed tribalism once in my life; that was when I went to Canada Day festivities on Parliament Hill when I was in Ottawa. I saw chanting. I saw people wearing war-paint. I saw fanatical devotion to symbols.
The CBC-types decry English-Canada's lack of pride. Anyone who knows this country in the least knows that appeals to pride and nationalism will tear it apart.

I may be wrong about details, but there is an anecdote where Keith Davey got Trudeau to use religion and nationalism to win Liberal votes. Afterwards, Trudeau said "Never ask me to do that again."

And Kimmy, I've stood in crowds on the Plains of Abraham for a 24 June bonfire with the same sense. I've never been in Ottawa on a 1 July.

Kids getting their faces painted is Mardi-Gras. I take it in fun.

Yesterday I saw on TV for the first time a Toyota commercial, presumably hoping to tie in with the centennial, which contrasts the miserable hardships faced by the prairie settlers during the early years, with the vibrant "new west" that's grown from it. It's not an Alberta commercial, as it would play equally well in Saskatchewan...
Quebec TV is filled with such. Pepsi allowed its Quebec advertising firm to opt out of a world-wide campaign to show locally Ding et Dong instead.

It seems to me that the people living in northern North America have good reasons to live together more closely than with people elsewhere. How this should be organized is a work in progress.

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While this thread was certainly not intended for my own private education I would like to thank all involved as this has enhanced my understanding of Canada.

Especial thanks to kimmy. You really got into the 'heart' of things.

The more I read the more unified Australia looks to me.

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... I don't think the fact that they came from elsewhere or that they haven't been in Alberta for great lengths of time diminishes what they did here after arriving. ... You probably wouldn't have grown to become a successful (whatever it is you do) if your parents hadn't provided you with food and shelter in your childhood. Does that diminish your pride in the things you've accomplished since?

-kimmy

But what wonderful things have people done together in Alberta? I mean other than mostly abide by the law and get fat and comfortable through their luck at living in a rich part of Canada? What is there about that which so fires your pride especially for Alberta? Has Alberta stood alone against a great evil? Has Alberta laid down doctrines admired by the world? Has Alberta produced great cultural artefacts or movements? ... ???

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... I don't think this attitude of looking down your nose at the rest of Canada is unique among central Canadians. ... intentionally piss off the Alberta ... central Canadians are the epitome of ... arrogant, brag to everyone ... do what ever they want without considering the effects on others, ... Alberta has managed to lead the country ...

Maybe that's something for Albertans to be proud of: being holier than thou.

In one breath you complain that central Canadians look down on others, then the rest of your post is a wildly chauvinistic screed against other Canadians.

Ah yes, Abertans lead the country ... in the fields of petulance and self-regard.

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In response to my explanation of why "Albertan" to me is not just a geographic area of Canada, I was offered only the somewhat lame "My Canada includes Saskatchewan."

I recall it differently. In response to your failure express anything which sensibly explains what you mean by being proud of being Albertan, I gave up. I replied, that my Canada includes Saskatchewan in reply to August.

And I didn't receive any response to my question about whether BC, like Quebec, is a separate entity within Canada in Sweal's opinion, since by the reasoning he offered earlier it certainly qualifies.

I believe I indicated that you didn't understand me, as remains evidently the case.

Albertan pride, when stated, is generally stated pretty quietly.

Perhaps. But certainly repetitively, and usually accompanied by a put-down of some selected untermenschen du jour.

It's not an Alberta commercial, as it would play equally well in Saskatchewan, but it's certainly an appeal to prairie people as distinct from Canadians in general; aimed at the belief that people here feel they have a distinct history and identity.

All histories are 'distinct'. Some 'identities' are illusory. Some pride is warranted, some is not.

BTW, it's fortunate that you were ale to get so much ad hominem mileage out of "rostrum". You clearly need the satisfaction. But just fyi, the word I intended was "nostrum". I deeply regret my profound error.

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I recall it differently.  In response to your failure express anything which sensibly explains what you mean by being proud of being Albertan, I gave up.  I replied, that my Canada includes Saskatchewan in reply to August.

Really? In that case it goes from being a flippant, evasive dodge to being flat-out non-sequitur. Golly!

And I didn't receive any response to my question about whether BC, like Quebec, is a separate entity within Canada in Sweal's opinion, since by the reasoning he offered earlier it certainly qualifies.

I believe I indicated that you didn't understand me, as remains evidently the case.

Evidently. I've given you repeated requests for clarification, and repeatedly been ignored.

In response to August's comment that Canada itself is just an administrative district and therefore presumably nothing to be proud of either, you replied:

Being proud (for good reasons) of a collective entity such as Canada, or Quebec, or the Atlanta Braves or whatever, makes sense to me if there is some distinction particular to that collective.

I asked for clarification on why Quebec, in particular, was a collective entity worthy of being proud of, and you replied:

As for Quebec, it predates the Canadian liver as a distinct entity.

I've asked several times about whether that applies to other distinct entities that predate Canada, such as BC, and have received no answer at all.

It goes without saying that I have no idea what you mean; the burning question seems to be whether YOU have any idea what you mean.

Albertan pride, when stated, is generally stated pretty quietly.

Perhaps. But certainly repetitively, and usually accompanied by a put-down of some selected untermenschen du jour.

Put-down? Hey, I did say I was "moderately pleased" to be Canadian. It's highly serviceable superstructure. What higher praise could there be?

It's not an Alberta commercial, as it would play equally well in Saskatchewan, but it's certainly an appeal to prairie people as distinct from Canadians in general; aimed at the belief that people here feel they have a distinct history and identity.

All histories are 'distinct'. Some 'identities' are illusory. Some pride is warranted, some is not.

I've stated in this thread several times that I feel that the ethnic diversity of the prairie settlers, their much more recent arrival in Canada, and their arrival in virtually unsettled parts of Canada marks us as distinct from the rest of the liver. You clearly feel that this is wrong, but have done nothing to explain why. I again ask for more explanation of what you think makes an identity, with a particular eye to why you think "Quebecer" and "Canadian" are identities, but "Albertan" isn't.

BTW, it's fortunate that you were ale to get so much ad hominem mileage out of "rostrum".  You clearly need the satisfaction.  But just fyi, the word I intended was "nostrum".  I deeply regret my profound error.

Silly me; I'm sure that anybody would have known you meant to say 'nostrum'. Can't imagine what I was thinking.

But what wonderful things have people done together in Alberta? I mean other than mostly abide by the law and get fat and comfortable through their luck at living in a rich part of Canada? What is there about that which so fires your pride especially for Alberta? Has Alberta stood alone against a great evil? Has Alberta laid down doctrines admired by the world? Has Alberta produced great cultural artefacts or movements? ... ???

I invite you to re-read my stories earlier in this thread about my grandparents.

-kimmy

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While this thread was certainly not intended for my own private education I would like to thank all involved as this has enhanced my understanding of Canada.

Especial thanks to kimmy. You really got into the 'heart' of things.

The more I read the more unified Australia looks to me.

Thanks, Tawasakm! It's always nice to hear that my rostrums are appreciated! :)

Incidently, I accidently stumbled across something the other day that I thought was somewhat related to this thread:

The population is easy-going and friendly, but can be parochial, especially towards the Eastern (regions) which are often viewed with deep, but usually jocular, suspicion. This attitude can be attributed mainly to isolation (...)

A Canadian reader might assume that this is in reference to Edmonton or Calgary; in fact it was written in regard to Perth, Australia!

-kimmy

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Perth, incidentally, is where I live. That quote rings a bell... Did it come from Nationmaster?

Another parallel is that Western Australia at one time wished to secede from the rest of Australia and form its own nation. The Monarch said no. Since the population at that time was loyal to the crown the decision was accepted.

There is still talk of it at times although I've never personally met anyone who was really serious about it. WA is rich in natural resources and because of this contributed more to the federal economy per head of population then any other state - and gets less back. This leads to some resentment. So there does appear to be some common ground between Alberta and WA.

Perth (population approx 1.2 million - haven't really checked lately) is regarded as the most isolated city in the world. It also has the most hours of sunshine out of every city on Earth.

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kimmy, just because you don't sequit something doesn't mean it doesn't sequit.

I've stated in this thread several times that I feel that the ethnic diversity of the prairie settlers, their much more recent arrival in Canada, and their arrival in virtually unsettled parts of Canada marks us as distinct from the rest of the liver.  You clearly feel that this is wrong, but have done nothing to explain why. I again ask for more explanation of what you think makes an identity, with a particular eye to why you think "Quebecer" and "Canadian" are identities, but "Albertan" isn't.

I must say that don't grasp why you feel it would be useful for me to enumerate who and what ought to be proud of things.

Let me try to clarify my point a little better, taking you as the example. You are an Albertan and a Canadian. Alberta is a province of Canada. You express a divergent level of pride as between the two. I merely wonder at the rationale for this divergence.

So, I look at your reasons, and I wonder these things: are you unaware that many other parts of Canada were settled by diverse groups? do you not realize that the whole country was empty and remote when people settled here? are you unware that your ancestors got there by building on the very same accomplishments of many who came before them? Also, I don't understand why time of arrival is prideworthy.

But I also don't understand how you can take something prideworthy about Alberta away from the country it is part of. The good things about Alberta equally accrue to Canada's credit.

... Silly me; I'm sure that anybody would have known you meant to say 'nostrum'. Can't imagine what I was thinking.

That's such complete sullshit.

<_<

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Alberta is a province of Canada. You express a divergent level of pride as between the two. I merely wonder at the rationale for this divergence.

TTS this does not appear to be anything more then a matter of association. Kimmy associates herself more closely to Alberta then to Canada. Since she feels that it is a positive association, and derived in part from a history of hard work, it becomes a strong association of pride and love. Perhaps you could say that she has a sense of 'ownership' in Alberta because she (and her family) have worked toward it and because it's most meaningful in her day to day activities.

Now if she cannot associate as strongly with the nation of Canada (because it does not relate to her day to day activities, does no reflect as accurately her sense of identity and because her work does not contribute to 'Canada' and so there is no 'ownership') then it is a simple deduction to realise she won't feel the same pride in Canada.

You said this:

The good things about Alberta equally accrue to Canada's credit.

It is a good point but it is entirely relative. If there is an antagonistic relationship between the federal government and the province (for example with the profit from resources) then perception of the two entities will polarise thereby creating two distinct and separate states (even though one still belongs to the other). Under those circumstances I'm sure you can understand that the Albertans may feel that the achievements of Albertans belong to them and not to the broader 'Canada' because while they are associated they are still separate.

That's such complete sullshit.

I think thats the first time I've ever heard you swear...

Basically I think you may be having trouble understanding one another because of 'relativity'. It seems to me that you both regard the entities known as 'Canada' and 'Alberta' in fundamentally different ways. Therefore you almost seem to be speaking in different languages.

Still I'm not Canadian and don't know that much about Canda (certainly not compared to all of you who live there) so I guess I should limit my involvement to this one post. Hope I don't seem to be butting in.

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Tawasakm, don't limit yourself: an outside view is helpful and particularly from the end of the earth.

My brother had a schoolfriend who emigrated to Perth but it was probably before you saw the light of day and, at one time, I had my thought in that direction but decided against everlasting sunburn.

You will probably understand this next better than our natives.

In England, there is a an intenxe competiition and pride of county in certain things. Yorkshire women abroad and close to giving birth, would often return home to Yorkshire just in case the offspring was a boy who would be a talented cricketer. He had to be born in Yorkshire to play for his county.

Yet, in the nearly two years that I lived there, I never heard a Yorkshireman who was not English first and foremost. That would also be true of other counties. Their peoples would be bemused more than I am by what happens here.

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Yet, in the nearly two years that I lived there, I never heard a Yorkshireman who was not English first and foremost. That would also be true of other counties. Their peoples would be bemused more than I am by what happens here.
But if you go a few miles further north, you'll find no one who is English. Compare comparables.
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