As we start our new year, here’s a talk I did back in May/18 I think bears repeating: I asked if Canada has a superiority complex, an attitude of superiority that conceals actual feelings of inferiority? Our standard of living is close to the highest in the world. We are regarded as a peaceful, polite nation. We are in the Top 10 of happiest countries based on factors such as healthy life expectancy, freedom, social support, trust and generosity. We rank #2 just behind Switzerland in 2018’s Best Countries survey that assesses what shapes a country from quality of life to economic potential. Could all this tend to make us feel somewhat superior? But we have some nagging doubts about our place in the world. We yearn to sit at the table with the grown-ups. We lobby for a seat on the UN Security Council. We long to once again be seen as the best peacekeepers with our military even though a succession of federal governments treats our armed forces with disdain. A local example could be when the New York Times puts one Canadian destination, Saskatoon, on its list of the 52 places to visit and we act like it’s the greatest thing to happen since the invention of the wheel. I don’t think we have a superiority complex. I think we have an inferiority complex, a doubt and uncertainty about oneself, and feelings of not measuring up to standards. But we have nothing to feel inferior about. We don’t have to try so hard to be noticed and respected by the rest of the world. We just need to pay attention to domestic issues and keep our own house in order rather than worry about what anyone else thinks of us.
That’s Coffeetalk. I’m Vic Dubois.