Discussion:
Does Canada survive?
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SolomonW
2018-04-22 12:09:47 UTC
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Say Canada was much the same abut Britain was in the 1800s much weaker than
in the OTL, say it had the power of Spain. Now would the US attempt to take
much of the territory of Canada today? Would they succeed?
Rob
2018-04-22 12:30:23 UTC
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Post by SolomonW
Say Canada was much the same abut Britain was in the 1800s much weaker than
in the OTL, say it had the power of Spain. Now would the US attempt to take
much of the territory of Canada today? Would they succeed?
The most interesting part of this scenario is "what is nerf'ing Britain?"
The Horny Goat
2018-04-23 00:53:10 UTC
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On Sun, 22 Apr 2018 05:30:23 -0700 (PDT), Rob
Post by Rob
Post by SolomonW
Say Canada was much the same abut Britain was in the 1800s much weaker than
in the OTL, say it had the power of Spain. Now would the US attempt to take
much of the territory of Canada today? Would they succeed?
The most interesting part of this scenario is "what is nerf'ing Britain?"
Agreed. I don't think there's much doubt that without British
protection Canada becomes American pretty much any time after 1812.

However in OTL, after the war of 1812 Britain and the US decide their
lives are easier based on trade than conquest and this was
economically largely achieved by 1945 in any case.
SolomonW
2018-04-23 09:46:57 UTC
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Post by The Horny Goat
On Sun, 22 Apr 2018 05:30:23 -0700 (PDT), Rob
Post by Rob
Post by SolomonW
Say Canada was much the same abut Britain was in the 1800s much weaker than
in the OTL, say it had the power of Spain. Now would the US attempt to take
much of the territory of Canada today? Would they succeed?
The most interesting part of this scenario is "what is nerf'ing Britain?"
Agreed. I don't think there's much doubt that without British
protection Canada becomes American pretty much any time after 1812.
If the US was to take Canada, they would shortly after that have to make
them citizens and accept their provinces as states. That would be a problem
for the slave owning states in the US before the Civil War.
Post by The Horny Goat
However in OTL, after the war of 1812 Britain and the US decide their
lives are easier based on trade than conquest and this was
economically largely achieved by 1945 in any case.
I would say after 1812, certainly after the US Civil War, Canada had little
choice if it was to survive.
jerry kraus
2018-04-23 13:15:07 UTC
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Post by SolomonW
Post by The Horny Goat
On Sun, 22 Apr 2018 05:30:23 -0700 (PDT), Rob
Post by Rob
Post by SolomonW
Say Canada was much the same abut Britain was in the 1800s much weaker than
in the OTL, say it had the power of Spain. Now would the US attempt to take
much of the territory of Canada today? Would they succeed?
The most interesting part of this scenario is "what is nerf'ing Britain?"
Agreed. I don't think there's much doubt that without British
protection Canada becomes American pretty much any time after 1812.
If the US was to take Canada, they would shortly after that have to make
them citizens and accept their provinces as states. That would be a problem
for the slave owning states in the US before the Civil War.
Post by The Horny Goat
However in OTL, after the war of 1812 Britain and the US decide their
lives are easier based on trade than conquest and this was
economically largely achieved by 1945 in any case.
I would say after 1812, certainly after the US Civil War, Canada had little
choice if it was to survive.
The situation of Canada as a British Dominion is very, very different from that of Australia, Solomon. Always has been. Australia was formed as a federal union, to some extent on the pattern of the U.S., more or less simply to keep the Australian people happy. Canada was formed as a centrally controlled dominion of provinces and territories, more or less to discourage immediate encroachment by an aggressive and militaristic U.S., following the U.S. Civil War. I suspect that the Australians were much more the prime movers of Federation, than Canadians were of Confederation. Basically, I suspect, in the case of Canada, the British were trying to find some way of finessing the problem of their extremely weak position vis-à-vis the U.S. in North America. So, they saw Dominion Status for the Canadian Colonies as a means of at least forestalling and discouraging American takeover, to some extent. At least if they were extremely accommodating to the U.S., whenever possible. As I've pointed out, by the end of the U.S. Civil War, the U.S. Navy would likely have made it very difficult for the British to send in sufficient troops to adequately defend Canada, so, effectively, Canada was theirs for the taking. Nevertheless, Britain was still strong enough to make things difficult, and, if they were cooperative enough, why should the U.S. bother taking over Canada? Essentially, that remains the situation to the present day.

Basically, the British realized following the Mexican-American War, in 1848, that the U.S. could write its own ticket in North America, so, they became very accommodating indeed starting in the 1850's. To see the British attitude prior to this, read Charles Dickens' "Martin Chuzzlewit" (1842) -- still, arguably, the best and most vicious satire of the U.S. ever written.
The Horny Goat
2018-04-24 00:25:42 UTC
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On Mon, 23 Apr 2018 06:15:07 -0700 (PDT), jerry kraus
Post by jerry kraus
The situation of Canada as a British Dominion is very, very different from that of Australia, Solomon. Always has been. Australia was formed as a federal union, to some extent on the pattern of the U.S., more or less simply to keep the Australian people happy. Canada was formed as a centrally controlled dominion of provinces and territories, more or less to discourage immediate encroachment by an aggressive and militaristic U.S., following the U.S. Civil War. I suspect that the Australians were much more the prime movers of Federation, than Canadians were of Confederation. Basically, I suspect, in the case of Canada, the British were trying to find some way of finessing the problem of their extremely weak position vis-à-vis the U.S. in North America. So, they saw Dominion Status for the Canadian Colonies as a means of at least forestalling and discouraging American takeover, to some extent. At least if they were extremely accommodating to the U.S., whenever
possible. As I've pointed out, by the end of the U.S. Civil War, the U.S. Navy would likely have made it very difficult for the British to send in sufficient troops to adequately defend Canada, so, effectively, Canada was theirs for the taking. Nevertheless, Britain was still strong enough to make things difficult, and, if they were cooperative enough, why should the U.S. bother taking over Canada? Essentially, that remains the situation to the present day.
Basically, the British realized following the Mexican-American War, in 1848, that the U.S. could write its own ticket in North America, so, they became very accommodating indeed starting in the 1850's. To see the British attitude prior to this, read Charles Dickens' "Martin Chuzzlewit" (1842) -- still, arguably, the best and most vicious satire of the U.S. ever written.
I agree with MOST of what you say other than the fact that Canadian
confederation was largely driven by Macdonald and Cartier of Upper and
Lower Canada with the full blessing of London.

Had the US made a serious effort to acquire Canada in the 1850s it no
doubt could have happened BUT given the balance between slave and free
states that was DEFINITELY not going to happen as that would suddenly
create 3-5 new free states which would have been anathema to the
future Confederate states.

By 1862 it was clear to Macdonald and Cartier that the North was
likely going to win eventually and that Canadian colonial union
blessed by London was the only way for the British North American
colonies (which included British Columbia) to remain free. And in that
context 'free' meant non-American.

And given US history particularly the acquisition of Texas American
acquisition of Canada would have been a certainly if Washington
thought it could be accomplished without war with Britain.

Specifically with respect to British Columbia I feel Matthew Begbie
was a critical figure since had he not existed or failed British
Columbia would have been wide open for a Texas style filibuster which
probably also puts the Yukon in US hands. (particularly if gold is
found within 10 years of the end of the Civil war)

So to summarize your analysis is basically right though it was
Canadian driven but emphatically blessed in London.
Rich Rostrom
2018-04-25 23:35:43 UTC
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Post by The Horny Goat
And given US history particularly the acquisition of
Texas American acquisition of Canada would have been
a certainly if Washington thought it could be
accomplished without war with Britai
I don't see that as parallel.

Americans settled Texas when it was empty, and broke
off from Mexico a few years later. Texas joined the
US, and the US then acquired the "Mexican Cession"
and Gadsden Purchase - both of which were thinly
populated and remote from Mexico's political center.

There was never any serious thought in the US of
annexing all of Mexico, especially the populous
regions of OTL Mexico.

_If_ some Americans had settled in the Prairie
lands...

and those Americans gave added impetus to Riel's
rebellion, such that Canada was defeated,

and Riel's group was recognized as an independent state,

and "Assiniboia" later joined the US,

and there was a border dispute leading to war...

Then the US might annex British Columbia and the
Northwest Territories, and everything else
west of Hudson's Bay.

But IMO it's unlikely that the US would try to invade
or annex Ontario or Quebec or the Maritimes.
--
Nous sommes dans une pot de chambre, et nous y serons emmerdés.
--- General Auguste-Alexandre Ducrot at Sedan, 1870.
SolomonW
2018-04-24 02:42:22 UTC
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Post by jerry kraus
The situation of Canada as a British Dominion is very, very different from that of Australia, Solomon. Always has been. Australia was formed as a federal union, to some extent on the pattern of the U.S., more or less simply to keep the Australian people happy.
It was not that different to Canada as you imagine. Australians were very
concerned about the rise of France, Russia and Germany in the region. So
the main reason for coming together was that a united Australia could
better defend itself. This Britain supported.

The other big issue was the "White Australia" policy. A united Australia
could keep non-Whites out.
Don P
2018-05-10 22:55:18 UTC
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. . . British were trying to find some way of finessing the problem of their extremely weak position vis-à-vis the U.S. in North America. So, they saw Dominion Status for the Canadian Colonies as a means of at least forestalling and discouraging American takeover, to some extent. . . .
1. There was in 1867 no concept of "dominion status:" this concept was
(created and) defined 1867-1887 by the interaction of British imperial
loyalism and what actually happened in Canadian politics. When first
wanted (1887 at the first imperial conference) "dominion status" was a
handy precedent promising democracy and local autonomy to other settler
colonies.
2. Not least, few British MPs bothered to hear the debates on Canadian
confederation. The hot topic in British politics in 1867 was Disraeli's
radical proposal to give the vote to propertyless working men, i.e.
those with no traditional "stake in the country," and doubling the
franchise. Few Britons then cared what happened to Canada (or the USA.)
--
Don Phillipson
Carlsbad Springs
(Ontario, Canada)
The Horny Goat
2018-05-11 00:19:43 UTC
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Post by Don P
. . . British were trying to find some way of finessing the problem of their extremely weak position vis-à-vis the U.S. in North America. So, they saw Dominion Status for the Canadian Colonies as a means of at least forestalling and discouraging American takeover, to some extent. . . .
1. There was in 1867 no concept of "dominion status:" this concept was
(created and) defined 1867-1887 by the interaction of British imperial
loyalism and what actually happened in Canadian politics. When first
wanted (1887 at the first imperial conference) "dominion status" was a
handy precedent promising democracy and local autonomy to other settler
colonies.
2. Not least, few British MPs bothered to hear the debates on Canadian
confederation. The hot topic in British politics in 1867 was Disraeli's
radical proposal to give the vote to propertyless working men, i.e.
those with no traditional "stake in the country," and doubling the
franchise. Few Britons then cared what happened to Canada (or the USA.)
"Dominion status" was as much created by Macdonald as anybody in power
in London. When it came the turn of AU, NZ and ZA London took a system
that had worked reasonably well with Canada and extended it.

Bear in mind that Canada took part in ALL of Britain's overseas fights
from 1867 forward except the Sudan expedition through Chanak in the
1920s - Boer War, WW1 and the Russian intervention.

The Russian intervention is the reason the official history of Canada
in WW1 is titled "CEF - 1914 - 1919" - NOT 1918!
Rich Rostrom
2018-05-11 16:43:58 UTC
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Post by The Horny Goat
Bear in mind that Canada took part in ALL of Britain's overseas fights
from 1867 forward except the Sudan expedition through Chanak in the
1920s - Boer War, WW1 and the Russian intervention.
Well, aside from...

* The Abyssinian Expedition of 1868
* The Ashanti Expedition of 1874
* The First Boer War of 1881
* The Anglo-Egyptian War of 1882
* The Nile Expedition of 1884
* The Peking Expedition of 1900
--
Nous sommes dans une pot de chambre, et nous y serons emmerdés.
--- General Auguste-Alexandre Ducrot at Sedan, 1870.
Don P
2018-05-13 18:11:03 UTC
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Post by Rich Rostrom
Post by The Horny Goat
Bear in mind that Canada took part in ALL of Britain's overseas fights
from 1867 forward except the Sudan expedition through Chanak in the
1920s - Boer War, WW1 and the Russian intervention.
Well, aside from...
* The Abyssinian Expedition of 1868
* The Ashanti Expedition of 1874
* The First Boer War of 1881
* The Anglo-Egyptian War of 1882
* The Nile Expedition of 1884
Not quite: GOC of the Nile Expedition was a chap called Garnet Wolseley,
with Canadian experience in 1870, who hired Canadian canoe experts to
get his troop-carrying boats up the Nile "cataracts" in 1882.
--
Don Phillipson
Carlsbad Springs
(Ottawa, Canada)
Rich Rostrom
2018-05-18 16:11:41 UTC
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Post by Don P
Not quite: GOC of the Nile Expedition was a chap
called Garnet Wolseley, with Canadian experience in
1870, who hired Canadian canoe experts to get his
troop-carrying boats up the Nile "cataracts" in 1882.
Right you are - I knew that, but had forgatten. BTW,
a good many of those experts were Indians. So there
were Ojibwas and Mohawks on the Nile.
--
Nous sommes dans une pot de chambre, et nous y serons emmerdés.
--- General Auguste-Alexandre Ducrot at Sedan, 1870.
The Horny Goat
2018-04-24 00:12:41 UTC
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Post by SolomonW
Post by The Horny Goat
However in OTL, after the war of 1812 Britain and the US decide their
lives are easier based on trade than conquest and this was
economically largely achieved by 1945 in any case.
I would say after 1812, certainly after the US Civil War, Canada had little
choice if it was to survive.
You're missing my point which was that dominating Canada by owning the
key industries was cheaper and more productive than trying to put them
back together again after a war.

I can't imagine anything within 50 miles of the Great Lakes falling
into US hands intact. Artillery alone would do the deed.
SolomonW
2018-04-24 02:45:46 UTC
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Post by The Horny Goat
Post by SolomonW
Post by The Horny Goat
However in OTL, after the war of 1812 Britain and the US decide their
lives are easier based on trade than conquest and this was
economically largely achieved by 1945 in any case.
I would say after 1812, certainly after the US Civil War, Canada had little
choice if it was to survive.
You're missing my point which was that dominating Canada by owning the
key industries was cheaper and more productive than trying to put them
back together again after a war.
I doubt that would take long to do.
Post by The Horny Goat
I can't imagine anything within 50 miles of the Great Lakes falling
into US hands intact. Artillery alone would do the deed.
How long did it take to Germany and Japan's backup and running after much
more damage?

As always, I am always very dubious of any argument that uses economics to
describe political policy.
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