Was President Obama's administration correct to refer to France as The U.S.'s oldest ally?  And does this not contrast with references to "New" and "Old" Europe made under his predecessor's term of office?

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It's surprising, even to Canadians, how many academic jobs were filled in Canada by Americans at the time, Dan. Quite a few of my professors were American immigrants. I guess America is so big it doesn't need to worry about a brain-drain (we hear about it Canada all the time, though I'm not sure how true it is).

One line that I came across in my research sounded just like a noir novel, "It was easy to avoid the draft, all you had to do was lie."

And yeah, arms manufacture is a dirty little secret in Canada but there's plenty of it.

There was a huge academic glut on the market in the U.S. post 1965. A lot of new Ph.D.s went to Canada because there were no jobs here. The rest were stupid and stayed.

Yes, and there were also Ph.D.s who answered the call and were privates being led through the boonies by eighth-grade dropouts. I knew some of them. What a mess. Not knocking anyone for their service, as it was a personal thing and not one of crisis proportion, but in the more casual wars of dubious missions, like Viet Nam, in which we were to "knock'em off in six months," it became almost a horribly tragic comedy and a breeding ground for the likes of the William Calleys. I remember protesting his prosecution, then, years later, re-thinking and deciding that were I with him that day I'd probably have killed him myself. One never knows. But an Army chopper pilot by the name of Thompson, who died just a couple years ago, was there and stood between Calley and the remaining villagers, saving them from the same fate as the first 122 or so who were murdered. He told Cally he and his crew would shoot him if he made a move forward. That also took grit. But if you put people in hell, they caneasily become devils.

I should clarify that I thought of the Ph.D.s who stayed to teach at U.S. institutions (myself included). Salaries and conditions were very bad and deteriorated.


I did not refer to the avoidance of military service.

Yes, I got that.

There are always quite a few Canadians serving in the U.S. armed forces. A couple were in my outfit. They're not required to serve in combat, and can walk off any time they choose, but most stay and go where sent, like everyone else.

John, what kind of reception did these expatriot professors get in Canada? My context here is how Americans can barely draw breath fast enough to lament the job taken away by immigrants, and we're talking low-end jobs, not college teaching gigs.

"And after service, when in college on the G.I. Bill, a younger student, 19, who was in my English class, refused his draft notice and had the strength of his convictions to stand before a federal judge in Norfolk and accept a sentence of five years(served 15 months) rather than serve with the possibility of going to Viet Nam. That took courage."

Yep. That's truly standing up for one's convictions. I have enormous respect for those who did this, far more than for those who left the country. As Butchie said in The Wire: Conscience do cost.


And I believe I remember the judge's name, though not the student's; Franklin Dupree.


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