Should the USA annex Canada?

This came up in discussion with one of my regular interlocutors* on the forums.  Should the US and Canada join together to form a single country?

“Geography has made us neighbors. History has made us friends. Economics has made us partners, and necessity has made us allies. Those whom God has so joined together, let no man put asunder.” – John F. Kennedy

Effectively, it would be an annexation.  I’m sure the diplomats would give it a nicer name… but Canada has the population of California, or 1/10th of the existing American population.  It would be the annexation of a smaller country by a larger one (by population… acreage doesn’t vote).

 “The acquisition of Canada this year… will be a matter of marching” – Thomas Jefferson

Some of the pros:

  • The border is effectively a formality in the modern economy.  The two countries cooperate more than any two other countries, and have for more than two centuries now: the economies are integrated; law enforcement is integrated; defense is integrated; the phone and internet services are integrated; the culture is integrated.
  • Continental management becomes a lot easier without the border.    This is true for so many realities: defense, resources, athletics, intellectual rights, labour opportunities, education.
  • Canada and Canadians, would gain unfettered access to the US economy.  Canada, and Canadians, would have a chance to vote in the most important elections in the world (the US federal elections)
  • America, and Americans, would double the land mass and resources they have access to, while only admitting a 10% increase in population, most of whom are… incredibly like Americans. Consider that there are 60 million Hispanics in the US.  There are only 38 million Canadians.

Some of the cons:

  • Canada and the US lose being two separate seats at global forums.  The G7, for instance.  Also the UN, NATO, the WTO, the OAS.  There are lots and lots of opportunities where Canada and the US both represent North America and have a more powerful voice because of it.
  • By losing self-government, Canadians lose the ability to craft policy that protects them from global winds.  Joining with the US means adopting American immigration policy.  It means losing the cushion of a Canadian currency to protect from global shocks. (Every time productivity increases in the US, Canadians get poorer… but don’t lose jobs.  That goes away if we start using the US Dollar.  The little banking, broadcasting, and grocery empires will also disappear.
  • For Americans… well… the 10% of population (and probably 10 more states) you’d be adding… are a lot like America… except they lean further left than California.  The Democrats would gain control of the Senate for at least a decade, as the political parties realigned.
  • For Quebec, it would probably be unacceptable. If it was a matter of choice, Quebec would probably leave the English speaking nation.

So… what say you? What are the dimensions involved with having a single North American government? What are the points that would be difficult to negotiate? Would you support it?

*This came up in my arguing that parliamentary government is superior to presidential government, and a lot of the problems with the US now can be traced to a (bipartisanly) totally feckless federal legislature that would rather let the President and bureaucracy make governing decisions.   Canada only provides parliamentary governments, my interlocutor said it was impossible to rejig the US constitution to get a parliamentary government, the states are obliged to give themselves a “Republican government.”  And I suggested that there are Republics with Parliamentary leadership (e.g. Israel, Ireland, Germany), and that if Canada were annexed, there’s no reason to think the Provinces/States wouldn’t be allowed to keep governing themselves through parliaments.  So… here we are discussing annexation.