Professor Philip Lane
27 February 2012
The American Pursuit of Happiness Beyond U.S. Borders
In recent times, more and more Americans are immigrating to countries like Canada and Australia in a spirited search of the American Dream. Catalysts for this recent trend are tied largely to the American economic crisis which has been afflicting Americans for quite some time. The incredibly high levels of crime in the United States have also influenced Americans to pursue happiness beyond U.S. borders. Countries like Canada and Australia demonstrate lower rates of crime than the United States and that seems to resonate with most Americans. Another convincing factor towards emigration is the high cost of healthcare in the United States compared to some of the government-funded healthcare systems around the world. All of these dynamics are deeply valued in American society and are seen as worth chasing. I believe emigration towards countries that promote economic stability, low crime rates and socialized healthcare is the ideal thing to do for U.S. citizens in search of these pursuits.
America is experiencing a high unemployment rate, large income gaps and an evident lack of growth for the working middle class due to the modern economic crisis and this is swaying Americans to search for jobs in foreign countries. According to Trading Economics and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the percentage of unemployed Americans is 8.3% as of January, 2012. This fares out higher than the Canadian unemployment rate which is at 7.6% and especially elevated compared to the Australian unemployment rate which is 5.1% (Trading Economics). Also, the latest studies show that mobility between classes in the United States is less apparent than in other countries due to the large American poor class and the tall demand U.S. employers place on the need for college degrees from prospective employees (DeParle). It has become clear to me that the opportunities needed...