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I'm thinking of a land...

PracticalProblemSolverPracticalProblemSolver Registered User
edited March 2010 in Help / Advice Forum
In my long term life plan I would like to move to another country, if not permanently, at least to experience something outside of the USA.

These are the qualities I'm looking for

Politics:
Progressive
Sane
socialized health care
open to immigration

People:
Friendly
Non-xenophobic
English or spanish speaking is a plus, but not necessary

Climate:
tropical or temperate, coastal or similar
winter is fine as long as it's not super extended
reasonable growing season, fertile
rainy is fine

Places of interest: Vancouver, Fiji, New Zealand, Uruguay, the Netherlands

What other cities or countries should I be looking at?

PracticalProblemSolver on
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Posts

  • AldoAldo Hippo Hooray the swamp, always the swampRegistered User regular
    edited February 2010
    Netherlands is xenophobic, we don't speak English, climate is temperate with a warm coat and a bunch of umbrellas you can survive year round, politics are insane (4th gubment in a row to resign before the term was up) and we're pretty much anti-migration.

    We're well known for our pot, though. Oh and the hookers.

    Too bad the gubment is trying to get rid of both.

    --

    If you're looking for a progressive and sane political climate I don't know why you would even think about South-America.

    --

    Dunno enough about other countries.

    Elendil wrote: »
    said Aldo hazily, before clop-clop-clopping out of the room
  • JNighthawkJNighthawk Registered User
    edited February 2010
    My friend lived in the US until adultish age and moved to New Zealand to go to college. He said he experienced an incredible amount of anti-US racism while he was there.

    I hear nothing but good things about Vancouver. There's a kick-ass game development studio there, too: http://www.relic.com/

    Game programmer
  • billwillbillwill Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    JNighthawk wrote: »
    My friend lived in the US until adultish age and moved to New Zealand to go to college. He said he experienced an incredible amount of anti-US racism while he was there.

    I hear nothing but good things about Vancouver. There's a kick-ass game development studio there, too: http://www.relic.com/

    I lived in New Zealand for a year and didn't experience any anti-US attitude during my stay. Quite the opposite, in fact.

    I hate you and you hate me.
  • balerbowerbalerbower Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    JNighthawk wrote: »
    My friend lived in the US until adultish age and moved to New Zealand to go to college. He said he experienced an incredible amount of anti-US racism while he was there.

    I hear nothing but good things about Vancouver. There's a kick-ass game development studio there, too: http://www.relic.com/

    Just what is anti-US racism? Curious. I mean, there are anti-American sentiments in many countries because of our government, our media, and other US political/cultural products other nationals find repulsive. But racism? That doesn't even make sense.

  • AldoAldo Hippo Hooray the swamp, always the swampRegistered User regular
    edited February 2010
    JNighthawk wrote: »
    My friend lived in the US until adultish age and moved to New Zealand to go to college. He said he experienced an incredible amount of anti-US racism while he was there.

    I hear nothing but good things about Vancouver. There's a kick-ass game development studio there, too: http://www.relic.com/
    That might have been during the Bush years. Now that you yanks voted in Obama the rest of the world is a whole lot less likely to give you shit.

    And in case of trouble: act Canadian.

    *edit: eh.

    Elendil wrote: »
    said Aldo hazily, before clop-clop-clopping out of the room
  • LailLail Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    Vancouver is pretty awesome, except for the rain. Even though it's been pretty sunny the last couple of weeks for the Olympics, normally we get about 8 months of rain a year (at least it seems).

    Other than that I guess we meet the rest of your requirements. We seem to always to rated high on the best places in the world to live studies/surveys. But maybe the news here only informs us of the ones we do well in.

  • FallingmanFallingman Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    Aldo wrote: »
    JNighthawk wrote: »
    My friend lived in the US until adultish age and moved to New Zealand to go to college. He said he experienced an incredible amount of anti-US racism while he was there.

    I hear nothing but good things about Vancouver. There's a kick-ass game development studio there, too: http://www.relic.com/
    That might have been during the Bush years. Now that you yanks voted in Obama the rest of the world is a whole lot less likely to give you shit.

    And in case of trouble: act Canadian.

    *edit: eh.

    The problem with this is that outside of the American continent - many people aren't able to make the distinction. You may need to tell them you're Canadian. And yeah, during the Bush years - Americans had a pretty rough time of it. I'm sure the sentiment may still exist, but there's probably less venom in it.

    NZ meets you criteria generally. It should be pointed out that nowhere will meet 100% of your needs 100% of the time.

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • illigillig Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    err.... by your description it seems that you want to move to another country that's just like the US... i mean, outside of the socialized medicine requirement, you can check all those by moving to an area of the US... keep in mind that the US spans an entire continent, from coasts, to mountains, to flat prairie, to tropics, to rain forest, to arctic.

    this just seems like the typical American way of traveling... wanting to "experience something new" but making sure the locals speak English and there's a McDonalds near by :lol:

    if you're looking for a change, try something that's actually different than the US.... the south american choices you listed would be a good start... or most of Asia, India, and Africa

  • oldsakoldsak Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    illig wrote: »
    if you're looking for a change, try something that's actually different than the US.... the south american choices you listed would be a good start... or most of Asia, India, and Africa

    I was going to suggest this as well. If you really want to experience something different, leave your comfort zone.

  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    Anti American racism? That seems a little extreme. Although as a local I guess I would say that, wouldn't I?

    Anyway, I have know a few Americans in NZ, ranging from tourists, to students to long term residents and I don't think any of them have ever raised that issue. That being said, it can't have been nice being an American student during the Bush years (Iraq especially) and I do remember some rather heated drunken discussions about such topics. But that is the kind of thing any American studying overseas would probably have faced in that period or probably will as long as the US is the dominant country in the world

    End of the day, the US provides the majority of our cultural imports, is a fellow English speaking country, with similar historical origin and is still (despite long term hiccups) one of our primary allies. If you feel unwelcome in NZ as an American you probably won't feel welcome many places

    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
  • FallingmanFallingman Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    To be fair, most "Western Counties" share a fairly similar kind of lifestyle.

    UK, NZ, AUS, Canada, Ireland etc are all pretty similar and english speaking (in parts). The nuances are on things like attitudes, "Quality of life", economy, infrastructure etc.
    Many countries in Europe are the same, but you have the language and and a few more cultural differences.

    While I'm always an advocate for travelling and seeing things that will broaden your horizons, I understand the OP's priorities with respect to a permanent move.

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • exisexis Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    Yeah there is a little bit of stigma post-Bush in NZ, but thankfully that's mostly calmed down now. In my experience, there are very few people that are stupid enough to blame all Americans for Iraq etc, but I suppose it depends on the circles you move in.

    NZ is small, but there are some notable differences in climate. Mid-south island experiences more extreme temperatures. In the middle of summer highs can be over 30C in some places, and get down to a few degrees below zero in winter. The tip of the North Island is generally warmer all year around than the rest of the country, and the lower South Island is generally pretty cold (but unless you're interested in farming/studying at a particular university there's very little reason to live down there). West Coast of the South Island has a reputation for being pretty wet. East coast of the South Island falls somewhere in the middle. Summer highs get up to 30Cish, but are generally around 25C (though this summer has been unusually cold up until recently). Winter lowers rarely drop below zero. You're unlikely to see snow anywhere north of the lower South Island (though weather has been weird lately).

    As far as politics go, we currently have an MMP system, though this may be getting repealed in an upcoming referendum. People here are barely political. One of my lecturers mentioned recently that NZ is odd in that we have one of the highest voter turnout ratios, but for the next four years everyone ignores politics.

    I think the big plus for here is that everyone is generally pretty chilled out. I'd write more but I'm late for class >.>

    XBL: ecksys | LoL: deyur | Path of Exile: deyur | Check out our Kiwi games podcast
    camo_sig2.png
  • exisexis Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    Oh, also:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q7UX8KASASU

    How could you not want to live here?

    XBL: ecksys | LoL: deyur | Path of Exile: deyur | Check out our Kiwi games podcast
    camo_sig2.png
  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    This may get a little local, but it isn't quite as bad as the above poster paints it. The lower South Island doesn't get substantially colder than any other place in the lower two thirds of the country, nor does it snow that much. While I live in that part of the country (23 years) I saw exactly two snow falls land and stay, outside of the mountains, and I lived in the hill country. Generally snow lands on the mountains or the deep back country high lands and very rarely on the plains or coast (although that may be changing). I would trade an Invercargill winter for a London winter anyday, although admittedly I would probably hate myself for living in Invercargill - think rural focused small city at the bottom of the world.

    The South Island isn't as bad as all that either. It really depends what you like. If you want a biggish, cosmopolitan city experience then Auckland, Wellington then Christhchurch in that order are your places. If you want a quiet outdoors lifestyle then the lower South Island would be more your thing.

    Also, we have three year electoral terms, not four years, although I largely agree with our apathy. But sometimes apathy is a good thing

    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
  • PracticalProblemSolverPracticalProblemSolver Registered User
    edited February 2010
    oldsak wrote: »
    illig wrote: »
    if you're looking for a change, try something that's actually different than the US.... the south american choices you listed would be a good start... or most of Asia, India, and Africa

    I was going to suggest this as well. If you really want to experience something different, leave your comfort zone.

    I'm not sure why I obsess over such throwaway comments. Both of these reflect a complete lack of empathy or insight with regards to my original post...

    If I wanted to experience something completely different and leave my comfort zone more than packing up my family and moving to a different but vaguely similar county, I would have made a post to that effect. If such adventures are something that is attractive to you then I encourage you to make such a trip, sooner rather than later. I recommend Zimbabwe.

    If you have specific areas to suggest, then I will take those into consideration and look into them further. Until then, asia, africa and south america are duly noted as different than the US.

  • FallingmanFallingman Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    For what it's worth. I chose NZ for family.
    I was born here, in the interest of disclosure, but I left and lived in the UK for about 7 years. I returned and we'll stay here now to raise a family.

    The things I miss are all the benefits gained through economies of scale... Some things are more expensive in a place without the millions upon millions to bolster the markets. But at the end of the day, I work in IT and although it's smaller, NZ stacks up.

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • Eat it You Nasty Pig.Eat it You Nasty Pig. tell homeland security 'we are the bomb'Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    you could just move to portland

    no socialized medicine yet, but we're trying to implement it

    gkcmatch_zps97480250.jpg
    stand up! It was the smallest on the list but
    pluto was a planet and I'll never forget
  • illigillig Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    oldsak wrote: »
    illig wrote: »
    if you're looking for a change, try something that's actually different than the US.... the south american choices you listed would be a good start... or most of Asia, India, and Africa

    I was going to suggest this as well. If you really want to experience something different, leave your comfort zone.

    I'm not sure why I obsess over such throwaway comments. Both of these reflect a complete lack of empathy or insight with regards to my original post...

    If I wanted to experience something completely different and leave my comfort zone more than packing up my family and moving to a different but vaguely similar county, I would have made a post to that effect. If such adventures are something that is attractive to you then I encourage you to make such a trip, sooner rather than later. I recommend Zimbabwe.

    If you have specific areas to suggest, then I will take those into consideration and look into them further. Until then, asia, africa and south america are duly noted as different than the US.

    duly noted.

    i had understood your original request:
    In my long term life plan I would like to move to another country, if not permanently, at least to experience something outside of the USA

    As you saying you wanted to experience something different. I didn't realize that by "outside" you simply meant "not within US borders but otherwise the same".

    I hear Canada is nice. And it fits all your requirements.

  • SanderJKSanderJK Crocodylus Pontifex Sinterklasicus Madrid, 3000 ADRegistered User regular
    edited February 2010
    Basicly, the most progressive countries are scandinavia + Canada, not really warm in the winter. The further south you go in Europe, the more socially conservative a country tends to get. Furthermore, almost all of Europe is facing immigration / xenophobia at the moment, as well as government invasion of privacy.

    As far as tropical healthcare paradises go... how about Hawaii?

    Steam: SanderJK Origin: SanderJK
  • ScorchedScorched Registered User
    edited February 2010
    Aldo wrote: »
    Netherlands is xenophobic, we don't speak English, climate is temperate with a warm coat and a bunch of umbrellas you can survive year round, politics are insane (4th gubment in a row to resign before the term was up) and we're pretty much anti-migration.

    We're well known for our pot, though. Oh and the hookers.

    Too bad the gubment is trying to get rid of both.
    .



    While our politics are insane, we are hardly xenophobic to westerners. As for people not speaking English, I'm curious where you're from, because as a Dutch national whose education was primarily in English, I've never had to speak Dutch unless I wanted to.

  • exisexis Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    Kalkino wrote: »
    This may get a little local, but it isn't quite as bad as the above poster paints it. The lower South Island doesn't get substantially colder than any other place in the lower two thirds of the country, nor does it snow that much. While I live in that part of the country (23 years) I saw exactly two snow falls land and stay, outside of the mountains, and I lived in the hill country. Generally snow lands on the mountains or the deep back country high lands and very rarely on the plains or coast (although that may be changing).

    Where did you live? Pretty much everything south of Queenstown sees colder winters than the rest of the country. Not huge differences on average, but it is colder. We very rarely see frosts any more in Christchurch (partly thanks to the smog), but I know for a fact that Otago saw a lot last winter. Not to mention multiple snow dumps over the last couple of years (my brother lives in Twizel, near Tekapo, and was snowed in for a week last year).

    But really it's not a big deal. I spent a winter in Boston and couldn't believe the snow dumps that were dropping every few days. Compared to that, having snow once a year in some very particular places is nothing.

    XBL: ecksys | LoL: deyur | Path of Exile: deyur | Check out our Kiwi games podcast
    camo_sig2.png
  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    edited February 2010
    exis wrote: »
    Kalkino wrote: »
    This may get a little local, but it isn't quite as bad as the above poster paints it. The lower South Island doesn't get substantially colder than any other place in the lower two thirds of the country, nor does it snow that much. While I live in that part of the country (23 years) I saw exactly two snow falls land and stay, outside of the mountains, and I lived in the hill country. Generally snow lands on the mountains or the deep back country high lands and very rarely on the plains or coast (although that may be changing).

    Where did you live? Pretty much everything south of Queenstown sees colder winters than the rest of the country. Not huge differences on average, but it is colder. We very rarely see frosts any more in Christchurch (partly thanks to the smog), but I know for a fact that Otago saw a lot last winter. Not to mention multiple snow dumps over the last couple of years (my brother lives in Twizel, near Tekapo, and was snowed in for a week last year).

    But really it's not a big deal. I spent a winter in Boston and couldn't believe the snow dumps that were dropping every few days. Compared to that, having snow once a year in some very particular places is nothing.

    I grew up inland North Otago then did undergrad in Dunedin. It really wasn't that bad at all when I was there, the snow landed and stayed only twice in the time I lived around there. We also used to head up to Twizel/Ohau/Mt Dobson way to ski, or to Wanaka as well, over the passes, and I don't recall ever having to worry about the snow (ice was a different story) on the trip. So I think the weather must be going through a colder cycle down that way

    I found Wellington worse in many ways during winter as even though the ambient temperature was higher than down south, the winds were more consistent, as were the rains so they together would cut through winter clothing and made a mockery of umbrellas.

    So go figure

    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
  • underdonkunderdonk __BANNED USERS regular
    edited March 2010
    Kentucky?

    Back in the day, bucko, we just had an A and a B button... and we liked it.
  • adytumadytum Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    My 10 cents-

    I've repeatedly been to Uruguay, am dating an Uruguayan, and have tons of Uruguayan friends including a Canadian that managed to get Uruguayan citizenship. I'm also planning to move there one day, at least for a while.

    I'll just say that while it's a wonderful country, it is incredibly hard to meet people (they can be very cliquey), Spanish is a must since English is not widely spoken, and you're best to go there either with a job that pays well (cost of living is astronomically high) or with lots of money because the job market sucks hard. Oh, and expect to buy private healthcare there, since most public services have fallen into wild disarray.

    Plus, their new presidente is a wild-card.

    Weather's great though, and it's right next to Brasil. :)

    etxvv5.jpg
  • Andrew_JayAndrew_Jay Registered User
    edited March 2010
    Aldo wrote: »
    If you're looking for a progressive and sane political climate I don't know why you would even think about South-America.
    Costa Rica would more or less meet the OP's requirements. But that's about it. Well, maybe Chile or Argentina but they don't really stand out for me the same way Costa Rica does.

    Malaysia or Thailand aren't too bad either. Don't know how much English is still spoken there though.

  • CristoCristo Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    I think you'd like Denmark.

    I'd, arguably, claim that we're one of very, very few countries that has successfully implemented a nationwide mindset of socialism into a Capitalist economy that works very well.

    We consistently rank as the happiest country in the world, the country with the highest living quality in the world, and the world's best city (Copenhagen). Living costs are astronomical though.

    We have a very nice summer, but it only lasts 2 (or at the max, 3) months and the rest of the year the weather gets very bland and gray.

    Alongside the Netherlands I would say we are easily the most liberal nation in the world and individualism is not only accepted but encouraged. And everyone speaks English.

    With regards to immigrants we don't have a problems with Western Europeans or North Americans. If you're Muslim or Romanian, I wouldn't bother.

    Unlucky wrote: »
    So, after having read all of his stuff, Pony's officially my hero now. I wish I could be that callous towards humanity.
  • FallingmanFallingman Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Cristo wrote: »
    I think you'd like Denmark.

    I'd, arguably, claim that we're one of very, very few countries that has successfully implemented a nationwide mindset of socialism into a Capitalist economy that works very well.

    We consistently rank as the happiest country in the world, the country with the highest living quality in the world, and the world's best city (Copenhagen). Living costs are astronomical though.

    We have a very nice summer, but it only lasts 2 (or at the max, 3) months and the rest of the year the weather gets very bland and gray.

    Alongside the Netherlands I would say we are easily the most liberal nation in the world and individualism is not only accepted but encouraged. And everyone speaks English.

    With regards to immigrants we don't have a problems with Western Europeans or North Americans. If you're Muslim or Romanian, I wouldn't bother.

    Hmmm.

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • CristoCristo Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Fallingman wrote: »
    Cristo wrote: »
    I think you'd like Denmark.

    I'd, arguably, claim that we're one of very, very few countries that has successfully implemented a nationwide mindset of socialism into a Capitalist economy that works very well.

    We consistently rank as the happiest country in the world, the country with the highest living quality in the world, and the world's best city (Copenhagen). Living costs are astronomical though.

    We have a very nice summer, but it only lasts 2 (or at the max, 3) months and the rest of the year the weather gets very bland and gray.

    Alongside the Netherlands I would say we are easily the most liberal nation in the world and individualism is not only accepted but encouraged. And everyone speaks English.

    With regards to immigrants we don't have a problems with Western Europeans or North Americans. If you're Muslim or Romanian, I wouldn't bother.

    Hmmm.

    Ironic, I know.

    But I think it has something to do with many people feeling like Islam goes against everything Denmark and Danes stand for what with it's female oppression and trying to take away our right to freedom of speech and expression.

    It's hard to explain, but if you met a Dane or ever went to Denmark I think you'd understand that we are extremely liberal. The most conservative party with any influence would be viewed as very left-wing by American democrats.

    But like all very liberal countries we have our own population of conservatives and flaws.

    (In hindsight, I hesitate to add that if you saw the statistics regarding immigrants in Denmark you might understand the cautious nature we have to immigrants from specific areas, but that is an entirely different can of worms I definitely won't be opening in here)

    Unlucky wrote: »
    So, after having read all of his stuff, Pony's officially my hero now. I wish I could be that callous towards humanity.
  • FallingmanFallingman Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    I'm aware of the issues. I gather that it's happening in quite a few places in Europe. For what it's worth, I wasn't having a shot at you. It probably brings up a good point that despite what the OP is after - no one country is a Utopia.

    And actually, the "open to immigration" criteria is tough, because countries that have gained popularity recently have also had to harden their immigration policies to manage recent surges. I'm looking at you Australia.

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • AstrocookieAstrocookie __BANNED USERS
    edited March 2010
    South Florida sounds closest to what you are looking for. The stuff you described isn't exactly "foreign".

    It's the most Progressive part of florida..
    relatively sane..
    no socialized health care but as long as you got health care don't worry about this.
    You can easily immigrate there because you already live in the US

    It's climate is a carribean style climate, which is pretty much the only place in the United States you can find that. It rains in the summers and there is a reasonable growing season where things such as oranges and watermelons are born.

    But the biggest bonus, is no state income tax, therefore you get to keep more of your money every year.

    .
  • radroadkillradroadkill MDRegistered User regular
    edited March 2010
    SanderJK wrote: »
    Basicly, the most progressive countries are scandinavia + Canada, not really warm in the winter. The further south you go in Europe, the more socially conservative a country tends to get. Furthermore, almost all of Europe is facing immigration / xenophobia at the moment, as well as government invasion of privacy.

    As far as tropical healthcare paradises go... how about Hawaii?

    I know the OP is asking for out-of-the-US suggestions but let me just say while Hawaii is AMAZING and fits most of those requirements (aside from out of the US) it's insanely expensive.

    Ridiculously, insanely expensive, especially if you're looking to buy property. My husband and I are going to have to save for years upon years before we could even consider buying a house here. And generally you won't get a lot of property with the house. Space is an issue, utilities can run out the butt, food costs are generally higher (unless you're living in a ridiculously expensive place already), and the job market is extra tight right now.


    The only reason we didn't die of costs is because the majority of our utilities and housing needs are taken care of by the military and we used to live in Monterey where shit was already super expensive so we were budgeting for such things.

    Nerdgasmic wrote: »
    Like some sort of raptor or the Great panda, Rad cannot properly initiate egg preparation if she senses a disturbance within her environment.
  • AldoAldo Hippo Hooray the swamp, always the swampRegistered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Scorched wrote: »
    Aldo wrote: »
    Netherlands is xenophobic, we don't speak English, climate is temperate with a warm coat and a bunch of umbrellas you can survive year round, politics are insane (4th gubment in a row to resign before the term was up) and we're pretty much anti-migration.

    We're well known for our pot, though. Oh and the hookers.

    Too bad the gubment is trying to get rid of both.
    .



    While our politics are insane, we are hardly xenophobic to westerners. As for people not speaking English, I'm curious where you're from, because as a Dutch national whose education was primarily in English, I've never had to speak Dutch unless I wanted to.
    Sure, enough people know enough English words to be able to understand you and with some creative use of hand and feet they'll be able to answer your questions. But in my opinion the whole 'waa every Dutchman speaks like 5 languages!' is a lie. We know a few words in every language and we'll act like we're fluent speakers. Not the same. Older people hardly know any English, younger people would just stare blankly at you if you asked them anything that's not a common tourist question and folks who don't have a higher education/picked up a lot of English in another way would have some serious troubles with watching a movie without subtitles.

    We are awesome with subtitles, though! Nearly everything on the telly and in theatres has the original English voicework, just with Dutch subtitles under it. Must be pretty sweet for foreigners.

    I made the assumption he didn't want to live in a place where the population wasn't xenophobic in general and wasn't just looking for a place where he'd be fine, but folks with him who might look a bit foreign would be discriminated against. Not that racism is that rampant, but unless you look like a Dutchman you'll be faced by assholes from time to time.

    Elendil wrote: »
    said Aldo hazily, before clop-clop-clopping out of the room
  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Aldo wrote: »
    Scorched wrote: »
    Aldo wrote: »
    Netherlands is xenophobic, we don't speak English, climate is temperate with a warm coat and a bunch of umbrellas you can survive year round, politics are insane (4th gubment in a row to resign before the term was up) and we're pretty much anti-migration.

    We're well known for our pot, though. Oh and the hookers.

    Too bad the gubment is trying to get rid of both.
    .



    While our politics are insane, we are hardly xenophobic to westerners. As for people not speaking English, I'm curious where you're from, because as a Dutch national whose education was primarily in English, I've never had to speak Dutch unless I wanted to.
    Sure, enough people know enough English words to be able to understand you and with some creative use of hand and feet they'll be able to answer your questions. But in my opinion the whole 'waa every Dutchman speaks like 5 languages!' is a lie. We know a few words in every language and we'll act like we're fluent speakers. Not the same. Older people hardly know any English, younger people would just stare blankly at you if you asked them anything that's not a common tourist question and folks who don't have a higher education/picked up a lot of English in another way would have some serious troubles with watching a movie without subtitles.

    We are awesome with subtitles, though! Nearly everything on the telly and in theatres has the original English voicework, just with Dutch subtitles under it. Must be pretty sweet for foreigners.

    I made the assumption he didn't want to live in a place where the population wasn't xenophobic in general and wasn't just looking for a place where he'd be fine, but folks with him who might look a bit foreign would be discriminated against. Not that racism is that rampant, but unless you look like a Dutchman you'll be faced by assholes from time to time.

    I suspect that point is pretty common anywhere though, or at least outside of a big cosmopolitan city

    edit - suitably modified for the country you are currently in, of course

    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
  • BlindZenDriverBlindZenDriver Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Cristo wrote: »
    I think you'd like Denmark.

    Naturally I have to second this :-)
    Cristo wrote: »
    I'd, arguably, claim that we're one of very, very few countries that has successfully implemented a nationwide mindset of socialism into a Capitalist economy that works very well.

    What are you saying. There is a crisis and unemployment has risen above 4%.

    Cristo wrote: »
    We consistently rank as the happiest country in the world, the country with the highest living quality in the world, and the world's best city (Copenhagen). Living costs are astronomical though.

    It is expensive. Especially cars which are taxed so it is buy one = pay for three. However if you factor in free education, health care and whole social security system then you find most places cost the same once you have payed for all that. No one here needs to save up for their children to go to college and in fact the kids even get payed to study.

    Cristo mentions the happy nation thing and it is true the statistics say so. Statistics also say crime is low, corruption is virtually none-existing, overall education levels are high, no one is really poor and we come out #1 in the statistics measuring trust in each other. In many ways we have it made.

    Cristo wrote: »
    We have a very nice summer, but it only lasts 2 (or at the max, 3) months and the rest of the year the weather gets very bland and gray.

    Only this winter it has been white much of the time. The COP15 climate summit really worked as we are having the coldest winter in decades.


    Cristo wrote: »
    Alongside the Netherlands I would say we are easily the most liberal nation in the world and individualism is not only accepted but encouraged. And everyone speaks English.

    Perhaps slightly less liberal and slightly less English speaking but apart from that I think the whole of Northern Europe should be on the list for possible countries. Be it Germany, Netherlands, Sweden, Norway, Finland... however stick to the continent. On the islands they drive on the wrong side of the road, drink warm beer and play a weird type of baseball where a match can take days - it is best avoiding such craziness.

    Cristo wrote: »
    With regards to immigrants we don't have a problems with Western Europeans or North Americans. If you're Muslim or Romanian, I wouldn't bother.

    I'd change that if you're a Muslim insisting woman are lower beings and burn flags over cartoons then stay away. If you want to be part of this place then please come along. I share an office with a woman from Iran, have another colleague that is from Egypt and this really is nothing special. Here one is free to be as they like with regards to all sorts of civil liberties and neither religion nor ethnic background matters unless you want it to. I'm not saying there are no stupid people because there is only this is less and less a problem.

    Bones heal, glory is forever.
  • ComahawkComahawk Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Why not visit multiple countries?

    What you want sounds a lot like the west coast in Canada, and we may be the best stepping stone to further travel, in the way of less culture shock. So you could always visit Canada for a while, then decide to head overseas once you have a good handle on the working in other countries thing.

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • LewishamLewisham Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Fallingman wrote: »
    For what it's worth. I chose NZ for family.
    I was born here, in the interest of disclosure, but I left and lived in the UK for about 7 years. I returned and we'll stay here now to raise a family.

    When I lived in NZ, I heard that story all the time. It's in the kiwi genes or something... you're always excited to leave, but you guys always come back in the end. I don't know any nationality that loves their country as much as kiwis... not in a patriotic RAH-RAH way, but in a really just loving to live there way.

    For what it's worth, I'm also going to throw my hat in for NZ. I'm British, lived in Wellington, NZ for a couple of years with my American girlfriend, and now we both live here in California.

    My fiancee and I both love Wellington to death, and consistently discuss going back when our lives settle a little bit (after grad school). She didn't experience any anti-American sentiment apart from a bit of joshing around, so I think the previous poster must have just made some bad friends or something. You're just as likely to get anti-American sentiment in any other liberal Western country, and it's so minimal it's not something to be scared of. People understand that American Foreign Policy != American people.

  • xThanatoSxxThanatoSx Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    I'll throw in another vote for New Zealand. My wife (Australian) and I (American) lived in Auckland for about 4.5 years before moving back to California and loved pretty much every minute of it. I never had any problems with anti-american sentiment during that time, barring some of my friends saying Bush was a fuckwit.

    One thing to keep in mind is the cost of living is pretty much teh suck. But from a lifestyle point of view - absolutely brilliant.

  • EliminationElimination Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Aldo wrote: »
    JNighthawk wrote: »
    My friend lived in the US until adultish age and moved to New Zealand to go to college. He said he experienced an incredible amount of anti-US racism while he was there.

    I hear nothing but good things about Vancouver. There's a kick-ass game development studio there, too: http://www.relic.com/
    That might have been during the Bush years. Now that you yanks voted in Obama the rest of the world is a whole lot less likely to give you shit.

    And in case of trouble: act Canadian.

    *edit: eh.

    I met an american on my own travels once who had Canadian flags plastered all over everything, and i informed him that Canadian's don't actually go that far with their patriotism, and that wearing Canadian flags all over his body kind of makes him look like a fake Canadian. Which he was, i mean he even asked me which state i was from. Canada doesn't have states.

    I'm from Vancouver btw. It's hot here in the summer, and never gets too cold really, even during winter.

    MARKIISIGFORUMSIZE_zps17defe18.png
    MechWarrior Online: Khyber Pryde
  • OrestusOrestus Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    This is a very interesting question to consider, although after reading your criteria and all the replies I think really the only places that totally fit are going to be Canada and New Zealand. The next tier would be UK (not really "progressive politics"), Australia (same), Scandinavia (all fail on the winter issue).

    Thailand fits most of your criteria except the politics part, Malaysia I think would be a bit harder as English is less widely spoken and the govt has a pretty explicit pro-Malay policy in jobs, benefits, etc. Singapore fails on "progressive politics" but fits most else and is pro-immigration if you have the skills they want.

    I think what would make this easier to provide advice on is some indication of what you envision yourself doing on this move. Do you have a career you are already in? How do you envision supporting yourself in this country?

    The reason I ask is it makes a huge difference. Thailand does not really have socialized medicine for instance, but if you make a decent American salary you don't need it cause you can easily afford what you need. One of your choices, Fiji, has an economy that is basically entirely dependent on tourism and sugar production. I don't know how much you know about sugar production, but unless you are a highly skilled specialist (Dive instructor for instance), you are not going to break into the tourism business in Fiji.

    Edit: Fiji also is currently a military dictatorship and has been thrown out of most meaningful regional groups in the last few years as a result, so they are about as far from progressive politics as you are going to get.

  • PracticalProblemSolverPracticalProblemSolver Registered User
    edited March 2010
    About the winter thing, I live in the high desert, I'm not even sure how they figured this out but the official last freeze is one week before the first freeze of the year, how do they tell them apart? Basically anywhere that has any kind of moderated weather patterns is fine in comparison. That means most of the coastal european cities are good by me.

    I looked into immigrating to denmark but it looks pretty difficult unless you either have a phd or can get a job, neither of which sounds very easy for me. Is there an easy route?

    New Zealand seems much easier, I think I can make the point score without a job lined up, plus I'm sure it's much easier to get a job in an english speaking country.

    I've been to costa rica and it is a nice country, it's a possibility. I've only really been to the nicoya peninsula area though.

    I can do IT work, right now I'm a freelance web developer, I can do web or application development, systems admin or dba work, mainly on open source software which I hear is big in the rest of the world.

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