Somebody on slashdot said "The UK is too Orwellian for me now. Where's a good place to move?" and a lot of opinions were offered. I wrote this.
I've been giving it some thought too mate. I was born in Wales, grew up in suburban Toronto and lived, worked and married in LA for 10 years then moved to the rural countryside back in Canada.
The federal government here in Canada still suffers the mental derangement Bush had, we haven't got our Obama yet and no signs of one on the horizon. Bob Rae was as good as we had but people here are as dumb and blind as they were in the US towards Bush.
Enough 1984-ish crap is happening here in Canada now that I'd consider leaving. Almost every functional process you have to do that involves "the government" is 10X more complicated and 4X as expensive now that it's "all on the computer".
Hello but I'm old school and think things should be better after you computerize something not OMG worse, Microsoft products notwithstanding.
And I'd really like to live in a place where a quarter of the people aren't addicted to an opiate or crack and live in welfare. God love 'em and all but these aren't the people I associate daily with and all things being equal if I can't live in some hi tech colony of clever and witty people then at least can I live somewhere where they aren't all drug addled criminals? I lived in LA at a time when freebase/crack was invented and holy cow talk about the needle and the damage done down there at that time starting with Belushi. And what powerful stimlants and opiates have done to north america and britain aye aye aye. "House" is more a sad reflection on our society than humor.
Here's the pros and cons:
The cops. Yeah, um, we're kinda spoiled by this, but those of us living in the UK, Canada, US, Germany and a few but not many more places, if we're taken by the police they'll be polite, you have rights, all in all it would pass muster on a "are cops following proper and ethical procedure" tv reality show. But in Italy or Spain or Russia, if the cops want to interrogate you the first thing they do is beat you up. So you're really on a short list when it comes to "civilized" contries, very short in fact. Jersey and the other channel islands, too, have the benefit of first world police. The Durrell is on Jersey too which alone makes it a cool place to live if you're anything of a naturalist.
I have a list of places as I've been keeping track of this too.
Yes: Uruguay, Cameroon, Kenya.
Kenya only recently got added to this list it was a bit bouncy before but the other two have been cool and have less problems than most. It's been this way for a while and friends who go there fairly frequently say it's still the place to to.
Not: Costa rica/Belize. Don't buy into the lie. Not cool any more.
Of the places left there's a couple that look ok if you're careful but keep in mind you're not in the first world any more. Having said that a dentist in Thailand in a very average looking strip-mall will look like a Beverly Hills dentist with all the latest gear operated by kind consummate professionals who charge $28 for a root canal not $1200 like in North America.
Borneo is cool too. One of the very few places where the different races reallu do live as one: Chinese, Indian and Utang.
("utang" is Malaysian for "human" or "person". So, "forest person" in Malay is Oran Utang, "Utang" is what they call themselves)
And whats interesting about this is these are the three basic type of human phenotype and the only place on earth where they do actually seem to be able to live in peace. Plus Borneo is 95% unexplored for all you extreme sports enthusiasts.
Madagascar would be worth putting up with.
A lot of it's attitude, too. You'd probably find Brits and Canadians that would be happier in each others contries and yanks and new zealanders in the same situation. For my money they're really all the same, little but more of this here little but less of that there but they're fairly homogenius.
Switzerland maybe too, but it's expensive.
Uruguay is my first choice. And if you're really into getting way from it all, look at downtown Montevideo then go out about a mile or so due east in the ocean. There's a little island there that used to be a prison, now abandoned. I think that would be a cool cyberbunker.
See you there, drop by anytime and bring your own solar panels and stay awhile.