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Emigrating To a Freer Country?

Soulskill posted about 5 years ago | from the all-my-recommendations-require-time-machines dept.

Privacy 1359

puroresu writes "I currently reside in the UK. In recent years I've seen privacy, free expression and civil liberties steadily eroded, and I can't see anything changing for the better any time soon. With people being banned from the UK for expressing (admittedly reprehensible) opinions, the continuing efforts to implement mandatory ID cards and the prospect of a Conservative government in the near future, I'm seriously considering emigrating to a less restrictive country. Which countries would you recommend in terms of freedom and privacy? Distance is not an issue, though a reasonable level of stability and provision of public services would be a bonus."

cancel ×


What languages? (2, Informative)

squisher (212661) | about 5 years ago | (#28491265)

Oh come on, if you're asking about this issue seriously, how can you omit what languages you speak?

If you only speak English, then your options are obviously limited, the English speaking countries are quickly enumerated.

Or, if you are willing to learn a language, then that is an important piece of the puzzle, isn't it?

Re:What languages? (4, Informative)

jlechem (613317) | about 5 years ago | (#28491317)

I live in the US and have looked at migrating to another country. Of course one that speaks english. I am a high skilled worked I guess (programmer/IT) and on paper it would appear many countries would value my skills even though I cannot speak the native language. However in practive I have found it incredibly difficult to do this. There is a metric shit ton of paperwork involved and unless you want to spend a lot of time dealing with it your employeer usually handles it. Also I live on the west side of the US and have been looking at getting a job on the east coast for a change of pace. I'm having trouble even getting a serious look because employers only seem to want to deal with local candidates. So I can't imagine dealing with another country in all practicality.

Re:What languages? (5, Interesting)

Fallen Kell (165468) | about 5 years ago | (#28491391)

The east coast companies response of looking for local candidates is simply telling you that they are not willing to spend a dime on relocation costs. Your response for getting past that is to let them know that you are already planning on moving there on your own and that you are simply looking in advance for work in the area. Their reluctance is stemming more from the fact that they are tight on the budget and have no room to deal with things like signing bonuses and relocation costs at this time for any talent that they may hire.

You need to learn to read between the layers a little.

Re:What languages? (4, Informative)

whoever57 (658626) | about 5 years ago | (#28491439)

If you only speak English, then your options are obviously limited, the English speaking countries are quickly enumerated.

Many of the European non-English speaking countries are actually quite suitable for English-only speakers who work in a high-tech job. In those countries (France and French-speaking excepted), it is necessary to have some level of English in order to become qualified for any high-tech job. Also, multi-national companies tend to look for (or require) English speakers. I speak from personal experience of living in a non-English speaking country and when I moved there I spoke none of the local language.

On the other hand, Norway is top of the "Human Development Index", but would you want to deal with the long winters and seasonal affective disorder? Much of Canada and Ireland are at a similar latitude, so the SAD issue remains if you choose there.

If you are starting from the UK, Ireland has to be the easiest country to move to.

Re:What languages? (-1, Troll)

larry bagina (561269) | about 5 years ago | (#28491485)

Believe me, the Norwegian pussy is the bomb. Once you get a sniff of that Scandinavian snatch, you'll enjoy those long winters.

Re:What languages? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491663)

I don't see how this could possibly be flamebait. A troll, maybe. But Larry Vagina is 100% absolutely right.

Re:What languages? (5, Informative)

tomhudson (43916) | about 5 years ago | (#28491553)

If you are starting from the UK, Ireland has to be the easiest country to move to.

Ireland is broke. Companies (and people) are abandoning it en masse. [] Ireland: Unemployment expected to reach 17 percent
By Steve James
6 May 2009

A report released early May by the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) states that Ireland is expected to go through the sharpest economic contraction of any industrialised country since the 1930s. The ESRI's spring quarterly commentary predicts that Ireland's gross domestic product (GDP) will fall 9.2 percent this year.

The report continues, "Ireland's economy will contract by around 14 percent over the three years 2008 to 2010. By historic and international standards this is a truly dramatic development."

It continues: "Prior to this, the largest decline for an industrialised country since the 1930s had been in Finland, where real gross domestic product declined by 11 percent between 1990 and 1993."

The 9.2 percent figure for 2009 doubles the scale of contraction predicted only three months ago in the institute's previous quarterly commentary, where a contraction of 4.6 percent was anticipated. Even the figure of 14 percent over three years assumes a "moderation of the pace of decline" and a "bottoming out" in the latter part of the year.

Unemployment is expected to continue rising. The ESRI predicts unemployment will average 292,000 over 2009, or 13.2 percent, and by 2010 will peak at around 366,000, or 16.8 percent of the workforce.

Wages are expected to fall by 3 percent on average, while the impact of recent budget changes is expected to reduce average household incomes by around 4 percent.

The ESRI also predicts annual net emigration from Ireland, historically an escape from appalling conditions that was sharply reversed over the last two decades, to reach 30,000 between 2009 and 2010. Emmigrate to Ireland? Sounds like the drunk driving the wrong way down a one-way street who, when asked where he thought he was going, replied "I don't know, but I must be late. Everyone's already coming back."

Re:What languages? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491449)

First of all, you sound like a pompous ass.

Second of all, What the fuck is your problem?

Of course this guy speaks English. That's why he wrote the question in fucking English and is from England.

What's next for you, Watson? Are you going to ask Barack Obama if he is a nigger?

The next time you want to go on a self righteous tirade why don't you do us all a favour and shut the fuck up.

Re:What languages? (1)

novalis112 (1216168) | about 5 years ago | (#28491541)

I think it goes without saying that the poster is either willing to learn a new language, or has simply overlooked that necessity (and it *is* a necessity). I don't think your post really adds any useful content to the discussion. Come to think of it, aside from venting my frustration at the uselessness of your response, I suppose mine doesn't add much either!

So here's some content:
I'm going to go out on a limb here and make an educated guess that you will find an inverse correlation between the level of "stability and provision of pubic services" and the level of "freedom, privacy and various other civil liberties" in a given country/economy. It's frustrating, but I suspect true. I *do not* suspect that it is necessary though...

Re:What languages? (2, Interesting)

Nazlfrag (1035012) | about 5 years ago | (#28491579)

Let's see, for English speakers we have:

UK: Getting worse
USA: Getting worse
Canada: Not too bad, probably following the US downhill though
Australia: Getting worse
New Zealand: Not too bad, probably following Australia downhill though

Best bet is somewhere with English as an official (or unofficial but popular) second language.

Ireland: Not too bad, probably following UK/EU downhill though
Fiji: Not too bad
Samoa: Not too bad
Tonga: Not too bad
India: Not too bad
Singapore: Getting worse
Hong Kong: Getting worse

So I'd say New Zealand, Ireland or Canada for less culture shock, but be prepared to shift again in a few years, or somewhere in the South Pacific, just watch out for the coups that happen every few years.

Re:What languages? (4, Funny)

dangitman (862676) | about 5 years ago | (#28491629)

Canada: Not too bad, probably following the US downhill though

Canada is an English-speaking country?? I've watched all episodes of Degrassi Junior High, and that ain't English they're speaking.

Re:What languages? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491647)

Let's see, for English speakers we have:

Fiji: Not too bad

Seriously? It's a military dictatorship. Tonga is barely better.

Re:What languages? (5, Informative)

Zaffle (13798) | about 5 years ago | (#28491651)

Fiji: Not too bad

you [] are [] shitting [] me [] ... Right? []

Economic Freedom (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491277)

A good place to start is usually economic freedom.


Re:Economic Freedom (2, Informative)

evenmoreconfused (451154) | about 5 years ago | (#28491343)

I was actually looking forward to reading your link until I read the footer: "The Heritage Foundation is a research and educational institute - a think tank - whose mission is to formulate and promote conservative public policies...".

Clearly unbiased, then.

Re:Economic Freedom (4, Interesting)

NeutronCowboy (896098) | about 5 years ago | (#28491407)

That's a bit easy. What exactly do you disagree with in the listing? Or do you just go by the source, without actually doing an analysis of the presented facts?

Re:Economic Freedom (1, Offtopic)

chill (34294) | about 5 years ago | (#28491417)

PCs == Lego; Macs == Barbies; Linux == a pile of I-beams and a box of nuts and bolts.

You had a deprived childhood if you don't know the term "Erector Set [] " and have to resort to "a pile of I-beams and a box of nuts and bolts". THOSE were fantastic toys.

Re:Economic Freedom (3, Insightful)

Mogster (459037) | about 5 years ago | (#28491565)

or Meccano []

Re:Economic Freedom (4, Funny)

tomhudson (43916) | about 5 years ago | (#28491605)

PCs == Lego; Macs == Barbies; Linux == a pile of I-beams and a box of nuts and bolts.

You had a deprived childhood if you don't know the term "Erector Set" and have to resort to "a pile of I-beams and a box of nuts and bolts". THOSE were fantastic toys.

Or his corporate spyware will flag as porn anything matching the regular expression /erect*/i;

Or he's behind the Great Firewall of China, and they come after anyone who posts about "democracy or free erections" :-)

Re:Economic Freedom (1, Troll)

dangitman (862676) | about 5 years ago | (#28491659)

I'm more surprised by the PCs = Lego aspect. More like a bunch of defective Lego that was rejected by the factory and doesn't quite fit together properly. Assuming that he means PC = Windows.

Re:Economic Freedom (1)

FooAtWFU (699187) | about 5 years ago | (#28491557)

Surely, if you were willing to consider the premise that "a good place to start is economic freedom", then you should still be able to glean some information about economic freedom from people who think economic freedom is good (American conservatives). Or perhaps you're a little biased too?

Re:Economic Freedom (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491627)

too bad economic freedom breeds economic lockdown when those who got there first build sandboxes around everyone else.

Sorry but ... (3, Insightful)

Augusto (12068) | about 5 years ago | (#28491279)

But to be quite honest with you, with what is going in Iran at this moment, your request seems frivolous.

I know I'm being a bit unfair, and that the mere existence of Iran doesn't excuse any violations into your privacy that you feel exist, but considering what is going on in the world this post seems ill-timed at best.

I think the word "freer" in this case is misleading, it almost sounds more like you crave for a society were privacy is respected and more protected, which I see as a different thing.

Re:Sorry but ... (5, Insightful)

0123456 (636235) | about 5 years ago | (#28491341)

But to be quite honest with you, with what is going in Iran at this moment, your request seems frivolous.

Yes, that's always the excuse the statists use: 'sure, Britain is a bloated, high-tax surveillance state where the police are more concerned with screwing fines out of the middle class than protecting them from real criminals and at any moment you can be dragged from your house and locked up for six weeks without being charged, but what about Zimbabwe, eh? You can't complain about Britain when you could be living in Zimbabwe' (though presumably now it's Iran that's the scapegoat).

I fled the UK a couple of years ago, and would never even think of going back unless the Tories throw out everything Labour have done to destroy the place over the last sixty years.

I don't mean it like that at all (1)

Augusto (12068) | about 5 years ago | (#28491377)

Hopefully you read how I qualified my comment, I don't mean it as an excuse at all. I'm just expressing how I feel about this in the context of this past few weeks. I'm not even saying that's a fair criticism of what he's saying, just expressing my opinion with regards to this with my current state of mind. Ask me any other week and I'll probably be more receptive to it.

Just being honest.

Re:Sorry but ... (2, Insightful)

Goldberg's Pants (139800) | about 5 years ago | (#28491437)

I left the UK in 1996 before all this started happening. Very glad I did as I look now and it upsets me to see what the country I once loved has become. I used to be proud of being from England.

Not anymore.

Re:Sorry but ... (3, Insightful)

PachmanP (881352) | about 5 years ago | (#28491403)

But to be quite honest with you, with what is going in Iran at this moment, your request seems frivolous.

uh no.

Iran is a reminder of what happens when the government becomes too authoritarian and the people finally realize it. You could then notice that one's own country was rapidly sliding down the authoritarian scale. You then have to decide if you want to leave or hang around until the shit hits the fan. You also have to consider that the point where you can freely leave is much sooner than the proverbial shit storm.

You wouldn't shout down the frog in the 75 deg C water for saying "gee it's getting warmer in here" just because the pot next to him is finally boiling. (assuming of course hypothetical frogs that can stand 75 deg C temps some how...)

Re:Sorry but ... (4, Insightful)

RsG (809189) | about 5 years ago | (#28491453)

While I understand where you're coming from, I strongly disagree. The existence of tyranny abroad does not excuse the erosion of liberty at home. Hell, forget Iran, I could think of a dozen far worse places to live without thinking hard, and yet I still see the point of the person who posted the article.

Simply put, the attitude you're expressing, namely "it's much worse over there, so why are you complaining?" is a common one, and very problematic. How is a person in a country that is relatively free, but headed in the wrong direction, supposed to agitate for change in that worldview? There is, after all, always someplace worse.

We, in the rich, safe, peaceful developed world, should aspire to do much better than Iran. We ought to make ourselves a bastion for civil liberties, human rights and responsible self-governance. Iran has a bad situation made worse by factors beyond the control of the average citizen; we have no such excuse.

That being said, my suggestion to the person who posted this article is the improve the local situation instead of fleeing from it. If you are among those who see the current trend as a step in the wrong direction, then fight it. If enough people did that, the situation would change. It's getting enough people to realize this that poses a problem.

I'm not trying to excuse it ... (1)

Augusto (12068) | about 5 years ago | (#28491473)

... just expressing how I see that in the context of my current state of mind. Read my comments and response above.

Re:Sorry but ... (1)

0123456 (636235) | about 5 years ago | (#28491561)

That being said, my suggestion to the person who posted this article is the improve the local situation instead of fleeing from it.

Labour were elected by 22% of the voters, the Tories aren't much different, though at least they'd get rid of ID cards, and they can't change much anyway because both parties have worked together over the last forty years to hand Britain's sovereignty over to the EU (I believe more than half of all new laws in the UK are now just rubber-stamping edicts from Brussels).

Given those facts, maybe you could suggest how the OP could 'improve the local situation' short of rioting in the streets and stringing up the politicos from lamp-posts on Westminster Bridge? At an absolute minimum, he'd have to get Britain out of the EU, and the entire politico-media establishment would oppose that.

The really scary part is that if things continue the way they're going, I could easily see people getting desperate enough to elect whackos like the BNP... now imagine a neo-Nazi government handed the keys to Brown's surveillance state and terrorist powers and it will make Iran look like a fun place to live.

Re:Sorry but ... (2, Insightful)

Warlord88 (1065794) | about 5 years ago | (#28491545)

Also, UK has one of the highest standards of living in the world. Is the privacy situation so bad that you are considering emigrating? I really don't think it is possible for you to find a country with standard of living at par with that of UK and where you can put your skills (if any) to full use.

Re:Sorry but ... (3, Interesting)

0123456 (636235) | about 5 years ago | (#28491615)

Also, UK has one of the highest standards of living in the world.

LOL. I now earn less than I did in the UK, but my standard of living is dramatically higher... I suspect that's true of most of Europe and North America.

I don't know how anyone can suggest that Britain has a high standard of living, unless you're comparing it to some third-world crap-hole. The cost of living is among the highest in the developed world and you get crap for it.

I suggest Iran (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491283)

I can type a comment

If stability is only a "plus", then (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491285)


Hope you like guns (0, Troll)

Lije Baley (88936) | about 5 years ago | (#28491293)

Where there is great freedom for you, there is great freedom for others to take advantage of you.

Re:Hope you like guns (1)

anagama (611277) | about 5 years ago | (#28491433)

So in order to be taken advantage of, one must let the government take inappropriate advantage?

Re:Hope you like guns (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491445)

Ooh you sound so smart, however, almost anyone would rather live in a world where people can take advantage of them over a world where some government controls everything.

"Hope you like guns"
This has been argued many times over, and anyone with common sense will understand that people who intend to kill will obtain guns/weapons wether or not they are legal-they're already going to kill someone, who cares if the gun is legal? If they cannot obtain these weapons, they will use different weapons. No ones going to go "Oh well, I was gonna shoot that guy but all I have is a baseball bat so I guess I won't."
The only exception is when some kid takes a parent's gun and shoots up his school. This is the parent's fault for being stupid enough to leave the gun where the kid can get it, and not recognizing the child's problems before hand (which are obviously there).

Re:Hope you like guns (3, Insightful)

RsG (809189) | about 5 years ago | (#28491623)

Where there is great freedom for you, there is great freedom for others to take advantage of you.

It doesn't have to be that way.

Real life governance is not some sliding scale where total anarchy is one end and Orwellian tyranny is the other. Is any social question so one dimensional? Thinking that way boxes you in, because it starts to look like a damned if you do, damned if you don't, scenario. You begin to accept corruption, because the anarchy scares you, or you embrace anarchy, because you don't see any alternative to getting rid of tyranny.

To give you a depressing example of why this line of thinking fails, consider this. A government can be corrupt, tyrannical and totally ineffectual, all at once, such as to leave a country in a state whereby the citizenry have no freedom, and no safety. That doesn't fit anywhere into the worldview that holds anarchy and tyranny as logically opposite extremes, because, hey, you have both. Usually this comes about when a corrupt government is in a state of strife or internal warfare, while still aspiring to ironclad rule - think Afghanistan.

The reverse is also true. An accountable government with limited, but not nonexistent, power, can run a country without falling into the pitfalls above. It must be democratic, it must be as transparent as possible, and it must have a strong judiciary backed by laws that include some sort of bill of rights or equivalent document above all others. Checks and balances are the key. Cleaning out corruption when it occurs is also vital, and failure to do so is usually what trips the whole system up.

The problem is, and always has been, that maintaining good government is a lot of work. Bad government is the default setting when it is not fought against.

nowhere (1)

wampus (1932) | about 5 years ago | (#28491295)

You can try Somalia, but if you want any kind of services - like a stable government - you have to deal with the government. This whole concept of freedom and privacy is relatively new and I don't think it will last.

List of Countries (5, Interesting)

hansoloaf (668609) | about 5 years ago | (#28491297)

Here's a list of countries by Human Development Index []

Re:List of Countries (1)

xednieht (1117791) | about 5 years ago | (#28491465)

Dude that list is horse shit. Every single county with high HDI invests more in their military than health care or education. Propaganda bullshit.

Re:List of Countries (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491559)

Irrelevant. If I spend more on a big fence than my book collection, what does that say about my house? Nothing.

Re:List of Countries (1)

xednieht (1117791) | about 5 years ago | (#28491595)

It says there's an idiot living inside it. Books might help you learn about your neighbors, fences just keep them out.

Re:List of Countries (2, Informative)

hardburn (141468) | about 5 years ago | (#28491609)

There's a huge difference in marginal cost between health, education, and the military. Doubling healthcare costs probably won't double life expectancy. Doubling education costs probably won't double the number of geniuses. But doubling military costs may do better than double the size and effectiveness of your units.

Anarchy? (5, Interesting)

Sporkinum (655143) | about 5 years ago | (#28491303)

A Banana republic with a little anarchy thrown in for good measure would probably be the most "free". Obviously, most people would like a little civilization thrown in for good measure. The trick is finding the right balance. My guess would be maybe one of the old eastern block countries. I would have no idea which one though.

Not the U.S. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491305)

Civil War is brewing. Should be a whole lot of fun with nukes, Raptors and Abrams on the battlefield.

Re:Not the U.S. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491477)

You're full of shit.

Re:Not the U.S. (4, Insightful)

Planesdragon (210349) | about 5 years ago | (#28491487)

Civil War is brewing. Should be a whole lot of fun with nukes, Raptors and Abrams on the battlefield.

Bullocks. Civil War requires geopolitical division -- and we don't have that. If Obama fails, the Republican Party gets a new rallying cry. If not, then they'll just reform or go the way of the Whigs.

There have been panderings of a coming "race war" or "civil war" or "red invasion" for longer than my father's been alive. And they're all crap, with an amazing ability to underestimate the religious feeling that "America" inspires in its citizens.

Re:Not the U.S. (1)

Malc (1751) | about 5 years ago | (#28491667)


Oxen. Or did you mean "bollocks"?

agreed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491313)

wish i could find a country that stood for freedom and liberty, American has lost this beacon and does not appear to want to regain it anytime soon.

Public's problem. (4, Insightful)

enigma32 (128601) | about 5 years ago | (#28491321)

I think one of the primary issues is the general lack of interest by the general public in maintaining freedom.

I've had extended conversations with people about why the requirements for air travel are such a bad thing and had them tell me they have no problem bearing their entire lives when they go through the airport -- they even have no problem with people monitoring them by video 24 hours a day if it means that they will be "safe".

Honestly, the general population is so unaware of their circumstances and has so little imagination that they have no idea how bad it can get.

If you find someplace better (I certainly wouldn't move to the UK from the US but it isn't so good here either) let me know.

Re:Public's problem. (1)

Planesdragon (210349) | about 5 years ago | (#28491577)

I've had extended conversations with people about why the requirements for air travel are such a bad thing and had them tell me they have no problem bearing their entire lives when they go through the airport -- they even have no problem with people monitoring them by video 24 hours a day if it means that they will be "safe".

Please, explain exactly why the police watching you & everyone else all the time in public is bad. What, exactly, is the problem there?

Are you afraid of corruption? Of a change in the law? Do you somehow think that either one would be hastened or slowed by mere video surveillance of public places?

I'm with the general population -- liberterians who think anything government is bad, or that anything even vaugey orwellian will inevitably lead to Big Brother re-writing the past and instituting a 2-minute-hate, are the unimaginiative ones, reacting like ludditeis smashing machines without ever thinking and actually applying real principles.

The only free place is (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491323)

Your imagination

Where to go? (2, Insightful)

Aldenissin (976329) | about 5 years ago | (#28491325)

I hear that Sweden is nice this time of year, unless you consider not being able to post any torrent files you wish against freedom.

Australia? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491339)

Many people emigrate from the UK to Australia for various reasons. There also the USA, but be prepared for the international humiliation of having a stupid leader (Palin) once again.

Wilderness (5, Insightful)

tpstigers (1075021) | about 5 years ago | (#28491353)

Don't be stupid. There's no such thing as a free country. Sooner or later, they all end up being run by bastards. If you're really looking to be free, I suggest you move as far away from civilization as you can. The only way to achieve actual freedom in this world is to separate yourself from the rest of humanity.

Re:Wilderness (4, Funny)

PachmanP (881352) | about 5 years ago | (#28491497)

Don't be stupid. There's no such thing as a free country. Sooner or later, they all end up being run by bastards. If you're really looking to be free, I suggest you move as far away from civilization as you can. The only way to achieve actual freedom in this world is to separate yourself from the rest of humanity.

A sentient computer and a rail launcher on the moon might do it...

Try North Korea (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491357)

I hear they're doing just great.

Start at Newcastle (1)

baomike (143457) | about 5 years ago | (#28491369)

most any country you get to from Newcastle might be good.

NB: Norsk is not a hard language.

End of the Universe (4, Funny)

kramulous (977841) | about 5 years ago | (#28491375)

I hear the end of the universe is a pretty cool place to hang out.

Apparently some good restaurants.

Don't come to the U.S. (-1, Flamebait)

xednieht (1117791) | about 5 years ago | (#28491383)

We have the Department of Homeland Stupidity (English for Gestapo). We have more Czar's than Soviet Russia. You can't wipe your ass without Supreme Court Approval, and our government taxes the poor to ensure the welfare of the rich.

These days it seems like the world is upside down, so I would look to countries that claim to be communist.

Re:Don't come to the U.S. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491481)

Agree 100%.

The majority leftist slashdot crowd, among others, has made certain that the US is going down the rathole quickly.

Freedom? Why would you even ask that here on slashdot. For the most part, slashdot readers don't know freedom from communism... and usually mistake one for the other.

Seems like I need a subject line to post... (3, Informative)

Snarky McButtface (1542357) | about 5 years ago | (#28491387)

Canada, eh?

Science Fiction author (2, Informative)

mrmeval (662166) | about 5 years ago | (#28491393)

Dave Freer is having to get out of Africa. It's getting very bad there. It is a beautiful land and based on his and several other peoples comments it's like having to leave paradise so he has not been quick to leave.

Some of his books are in the Baen free library []

Come to the USA! (5, Informative)

Planesdragon (210349) | about 5 years ago | (#28491397)

Don't listen to the crap you might see from the libertarians on /. The USA is a great place to come if your own country is becoming more repressive than you like. Here's my best argument ("best" at 12:30 saturday morning.)

#1: We have rights of expression, assembly, thought, speech, and, yes, privacy enshrined in the Constitution. All the UK really has is the continued good will of the crown (or, if you rather, the respect for history in Parliament.) We do, in fact, have the 2nd amendment (right to bear arms) specifically so we can unseat any tyrant who tries to take our rights away.

#2: As a culture, we prize freedom the way Israel prizes "never again" or Iran prizes "Islam". "I just want to be left alone" is the only argument you'll need to get any American on your side. Our two major political parties argue about how we collaborate on things, and where we should extend legal privileges -- NOT on how free we should be. (At least, not the serious ones.)

#3: America is currently in the beginings of its post-Bush era. We do reactions VERY well in this country -- and that means the principle sin of the Bush, era, "sacraficing liberty for security", is likely not to be repeated in the next 10-20 years. If ever.

#4: you'd be in the same country as /.!

#5: From a feudalistic standpoint, you would go from being a subject of a crown to a citizen of a country -- theoretically speaking, from a king's slave to a king's peer.

Re:Come to the USA! (2, Insightful)

novalis112 (1216168) | about 5 years ago | (#28491583)

#1: Good point, but good luck exercising any of those constitutionally recognized rights.

#2: "I just want to be left alone" is absolutely going to get many Americans on your side... until they want something from you.

#3: Man I hope you're right about this one! But so far, it's not looking too good. Obama is putting the same crooks, criminals and downright villains in office as his predecessor (as far as I can tell, I admit I haven't been keeping up here).

#4: Uhh, woot?

#5: Here here!

Re:Come to the USA! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491601)

Once the lumpen citizen loses his home, car, and wide screen TV to the depression that is getting rolling here in the US, he will start to pay attention. Things will change pretty quickly once that happens. The web is getting the truth out there. I am betting that the government that caused this mess will be the first thing to be put in it's place. I'm not sure if the people will take over the government, there will be a revolution, or the country will fragment, but it will be interesting. It will also be much freer once the statists go down.

Re:Come to the USA! (1)

PachmanP (881352) | about 5 years ago | (#28491619)

#3: America is currently in the beginings of its post-Bush era. We do reactions VERY well in this country -- and that means the principle sin of the Bush, era, "sacraficing liberty for security", is likely not to be repeated in the next 10-20 years. If ever.

Yeah how that going for ya? []

I think The Who said it best [] "Meet the new boss, same as the old boss"

Re:Come to the USA! (2, Insightful)

xednieht (1117791) | about 5 years ago | (#28491631)

Wake up - if you're the "king's peer" how come he takes money from you but gives nothing in return?

Re:Come to the USA! (1)

joocemann (1273720) | about 5 years ago | (#28491657)

Well put.

I had modpoints earlier, but now they are gone...

+1 Interesting

Hong Kong (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491399)

I'm not sure what your professional background, but if it's in international banking/finance you should really consider Hong Kong. Unlike Mainland China, it has freedom of speech and press (although Beijing will be tightening its grip over the next 40 years) and is a perfect mix of East and West. Although quite expensive, it's one of the greatest cities in the world in my opinion.

If your field is something other than finance, don't rule out Hong Kong - it will just be much more difficult to find a position in your field, especially if you don't speak Cantonese and/or Mandarin.

Re:Hong Kong (1)

djupedal (584558) | about 5 years ago | (#28491509)

Reason why jobs are open in HK is that the talent has moved on. Take the hint. HK is nothing more than a theme park from now on. Don't bother doing anything more than using the airport to pass thru. And don't bother w/Singapore either. All the talented finance guys there are fighting over the remaining decent paying jobs....both of them.

Now, Shanghai...that's a different story.

Come to India (3, Insightful)

gopla (597381) | about 5 years ago | (#28491411)

Yes. In theory, we in India too have restricted freedom of speech and government constantly telling citizens how to behave.

But, India is such a huge country with huge population that government is overwhelmed. It cannot monitor everybody. And the society as a whole is lot more tolerant. So in practice every individual experience a true freedom and anonymity. This remains true until you become too popular and catch eye of media. Which I think is very less probability again due to huge population. May be 10000 popular people in set of 1 Billion.

Re:Come to India (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491555)

A lot more tolerant? I tend to disagree. Maybe there isn't as much government interference, but the social pressure in India more than makes up for it. India is a nice place to visit, but as I foreigner I would never be able to live there. The lack of infrastructure, electricity cuts in most cities, flocks of touts and beggars, men who gawk (if you're female and unaccompanied by a man, even if you dress conservatively), and uptight attitudes towards alcohol and tobacco would take it off my list.

Go East my Son (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491425)

go to China, as a foreigner, you can do almost anything

Be more clear (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491431)

I suggest you clarify what you really want. Freedom and relative stability can be found in plenty of places but each place will have quite a different lifestyle.

I'd like to move to Southeast Asia but buying land is a problem in my country of preference there. I'd like a tropical climate and a very simple and peaceful existence so I'll likely end up in South America instead where there are some better land options.

Good luck!

Avoid the Failed or Failing States (3, Interesting)

Leemeng (970560) | about 5 years ago | (#28491443)

Well, you could weed out the countries NOT to emigrate to. The 2009 Failed State Index is out:

I found their rating criteria exhaustive, but fair. It's basically a shopping list for what a good country should have.

Best way to live outside the law... (1)

djupedal (584558) | about 5 years ago | (#28491455) to live within it.

Personally, I feel more free living as an expat in China than as a native of & in NA.

Communist is best.. (3, Funny)

WittyName (615844) | about 5 years ago | (#28491463)

Generally south east asia is pretty good. China is communist, so is Vietnam. But this is really in name only. They do not make any effort at being friendly or fuzzy to the population. But as a foreigner living there, you can say what you want about the government, and pretty much do what you want. They do not want a story about you being arrested on some BS in the international papers.

They are busy building infrastructure so there is no money for fancy ID cards, camera networks, or much spying. Even in china, the internet spying is looking for chinese words, not english..

Language is not a big issue, as the last 20 years english is taught to all school kids.
Weather is nice, internet works good, 5 minute walk to the beach, cheap standard of living.

Go communists!

No country is 100-percent free. (2, Interesting)

reporter (666905) | about 5 years ago | (#28491467)

No country is 100% free, but the most free countries are located in the West. If freedom of speech is your primary concern, then the United States is likely the "most" free. Speech is generally not censored. Both the Reverend Jeremiah Wright (of Trinity United Church of Christ [] ) and the leaders of the Daughters of the American Revolution [] are free to make speeches.

You are free to say that you love America or that you hate America. Most Americans respect free speech. It is codified in our constitution, and the Supreme Court has consistently favored free speech.

The flip side of that freedom is that you are also free to die or, more likely, free to suffer serious health problems, and no one will care. The USA is undergoing the worst recession in decades. Many families have lost health insurance due to job loss. They cannot afford COBRA-mandated health insurance. The end result is that minor medical problems endured by insurance-less folks are simply ignored. These problems can eventually become lethal. For example, a tiny lump in a woman's breast can lead to death within a few years years.

In Europe, the state places more restrictions on speech, but the state also tends to provide more support to you in times of crisis.

Now, here is a revolutionary idea: tying more freedoms with more support from the state. In other words, the state provides universal healthcare but, at the same time, supports your right to utter any kind of speech that you want.

This revolutionary idea is taking hold in France. President Nicolas Sarkozy greatly admires American freedoms but supports state-sponsored social welfare programs like universal healthcare. I would bet good money that he personally wants to maximize freedom of speech -- including allowing outright condemnation of Islam. Such condemnation is considered hate speech in some European countries, and anyone who utters such speech can be banned from entry into those countries.

Re:No country is 100-percent free. (1)

ardor (673957) | about 5 years ago | (#28491611)

Unfortunately, Sarkozy is in love with the music industry, which in turn is one of the biggest enemies of free speech, freedom of expression, democracy, and privacy.

New Zealand (4, Informative)

Binkleyz (175773) | about 5 years ago | (#28491471)

Jokes about "Flight of the Conchords" (and sheep) aside, New Zealand is a modern, English speaking, very politically free and open country.. They are very much a part of the "First World", but so far have avoided many of the more "Police State-y" laws and regulations that you seem eager to be away from.

They have a "Quality of Life" [] score just below the US and considerably better than the UK.

Re:New Zealand (2, Interesting)

neuroinf (584577) | about 5 years ago | (#28491543)

Absolutely. Carbon neutral by 2025 as an added bonus.

Stay away from Canada (4, Funny)

Linegod (9952) | about 5 years ago | (#28491491)

Stay away from Canada. It's horrible here. No freedom. You wouldn't like it. Try the US, I hear they have a magic president or something.


Canada would be a very good choice! (3, Informative)

uchar (166138) | about 5 years ago | (#28491499)

I would recommend you to go to Montreal, Quebec, Canada... you would love it for sure, as for privacy, services and so on... you will have everything you wish for!!! Privacy is one of the top sensitive subject here, even inter-governmental institution doesn't share personal information on citizen... If there's camera on some street, they aren't allowed to record anything... Here you have nature minutes away, beautiful women on every corner and lots of entertainment... Most of all, you won't find a city offering that much for that cheap!

Bobby Fischer's a good guide (2, Interesting)

BountyX (1227176) | about 5 years ago | (#28491501)

The famous american chess player was notoriously anti-american. He fled the US to several countries. You can trace his life as an emigre [] . It serves as a good guide. The wikipedia corruption index [] may be of use, although I cannot vouch for its accuracy. I favorite Turkey, Japan, Sweden, Austria, or Denmark. Good luck.

what kind of freedoms? (2, Interesting)

wizardforce (1005805) | about 5 years ago | (#28491505)

some countries have better economic freedom while less social freedom, which country you wish to move to depends on which of these are more important. if it's econ then pick one of the top countries listed here: []

if you want social freedom, countries in soe parts of europe are better; sweden, denmark, new zealand if outside of europe is ok.. overall between the two, switzerland is high on my own personal list.

Finland (5, Interesting)

pbaer (833011) | about 5 years ago | (#28491511)

Finland has the best privacy laws in the world, and Finns enjoy a lot of rights, such as "right to roam" [] . Finland also had women's suffrage in 1906, much earlier than most countries. Finland is also a highly technological nation, which since you post on slashdot, is probably a plus. Most of the people there will speak english to some degree, which should make communicating a little easier.

Finland, however has disadvantages such as, a very difficult native language, immigrating will be tougher than other nations, cold weather, and possible invasion from Russia. If you like Finland, but can't handle the language, you could try a different Scandinavian country, as they all share the same basic values.

You should find this link helpful, it has an immigration section. []

Stay. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491517)

Stay in the UK. Its YOUR fucking country, damn it. Stand up for it.

See, the problem with emigrating to another country because you won't stand up for freedom is that you have a problem in the first place. You won't safe guard your freedoms. So you move to another country and you will eventually loose your freedoms there too, since you (the people) aren't taking care of them. Freedom is like muscle, if you don't exercise and use it, you will loose it.

So stay my friend. Be that guy/gal, like Gandhi or Thoreau or Rosa Parks.
Unless your life is at risk, stay.

I'd recommend Australia or Canada...NOT the U.S. (-1, Flamebait)

PortHaven (242123) | about 5 years ago | (#28491529)

Please...whatever you do. DO NOT move to the U.S.

We have enough stinkin' liberals here trying to take everyone's rights away and blaming it always on the conservatives. We don't need another liberal like you, who will want to eliminate our right to bear arms, capitalism, and pillars of America's foundation.

Frankly, state migration is a big part of the problem in America. It started with the mass exodus of New England and the northeast. They moved to California and Florida. They took two states that more closely resembled Texas and turned them into bastions of liberal thought. In the case of California, these migrants from the northeast passed socialism, liberal ideals, and have bankrupted California. Creating another exodus to states like Nevada, & Colorado. They began passing similar laws and legislation. Always trying to build their liberal utopia, and in the process taking away everyone's rights and heaping upon themselves a bureaucratic nightmare of regulations and restrictions,

Now these same liberals are seeking new states to destroy such as Montana, Nebraska and Texas. When are you guys going to figure out that the problem is YOU!!!!

(Sometimes I wish there were no conservatives, than the liberals would have no excuse, no one to blame but themselves.)

Re:I'd recommend Australia or Canada...NOT the U.S (2, Insightful)

spiffmastercow (1001386) | about 5 years ago | (#28491621)

yeah, we socialists were definitely the ones who decided to deregulate the banks and thus cause the collapse of the entire fucking world economy! Also, I love how you're telling someone seeking freedom you don't want him here because he doesn't share your views.

Antarctica (1)

unlametheweak (1102159) | about 5 years ago | (#28491533)

Antarctica has no laws that I am aware of (aside from some UN treaties; though everybody knows how enforceable UN treaties are).

By "freer" I'm not sure what you mean, as the word "free" is quite ambiguous; free from what? Utopia is a place that literally means nowhere. As long as there are humans where you go then you will never be completely free, because humans gain status by controlling other people. Play the game, or get out of it completely. There is no need for money down there, no violence, rape, or thievery. It's a cool place to live. Don't forget to bring your snow shoes.

The Great White North (1)

Lynchenstein (559620) | about 5 years ago | (#28491573)

Canada, eh! We still love the Queen more-or-less and it rains a lot on the West Coast. You'll feel right at home. Plus, you won't have to change the way you spell; colour, neighbourhood, etc.

Estonia (1)

StealthyRoid (1019620) | about 5 years ago | (#28491575)

I've been looking into this myself lately (US resident, hate the fact that the free market is quickly becoming an extinct beast here), and fwiw, Estonia and Hong Kong are at the top of my list. Estonia b/c they have a flat tax (20%), and are pretty libertarian-leaning currently (although their PM's party just narrowly avoided defeat in this last election, so keep an eye out). Hong Kong is a little crowded, and there's the whole China thing to deal with, but for the most part, the Reds respect the "two systems, one country" policy that's kept Hong Kong prosperous.

the netherlands (1)

spiffmastercow (1001386) | about 5 years ago | (#28491589)

the only western country smart enough to decriminalize weed, and a staunch supporter of free speech.

Living (1)

lsdi (1585395) | about 5 years ago | (#28491625)

I'm from Brazil. I used to live in the US (one year contract only - an infamous H1B), Ireland and Italy. I found that there are types of freedom. Sometimes I felt that Brazil was a more free place than US. But when it comes to media, I don't think there are many countries with the US level of freedom of speech. Everything comes at a cost, even freedom. In Brazil media is not under gov control, except for age classification. BUT, usually you get sued by who you are talking about and may have to pay some huge amount of money for it. I would recommend Brazil, getting Brazilian citizenship is very easy, usually you just need to stay here for some years and giving up your origin citizenship. Getting a job... that's another story...

Survey says - Hong Kong. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491633)

Well, if you can believe this []

I live in California, which is really screwed up, but I personally don't feel the pain, yet.

I see Australia and New Zealand rank higher, but even in California you can buy firearms still. My sister lived in New Zealand for a while, but said it seemed like she was living in the USA, in the 1950s... whatever that means, maybe that is a good thing.

FWIW, the USA is #6, a few steps above the UK. We have some bad stuff going on, but in practice it is a big place where folks don't pay attention to the letter of the law in a lot of cases.

Of course, this is an "economics" score, so it might not be what you are looking for. If you want freedom, as in anarchy, get your money first, then move to some hell-hole where you can hire thugs to protect you while you do whatever you want.

Maybe change the tag (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28491639)

!usa would perhaps be a better one.

Canada is good today, the problem being our current government may follow suit with American policies, reducing the quality of life here in the future.

Only one option (1)

maugle (1369813) | about 5 years ago | (#28491649)

You have to create your own little country. Now, since pretty much all the land is taken by other countries (except Antarctica, and nobody wants to live there), you'll have to build it at the bottom of the ocean. But it would be perfect! So perfect that you could probably name it something like "Rapture"! I can't think of anything that could go wrong with this, can you?
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