• How we implement basic income will define our future

    In Western economies… pre-retirement assistance is an increasingly dysfunctional patchwork of schemes. Some are directed at certain groups while ignoring others. Many are tied to employment… We’re coming back to UBI now because the “social contract” between employers and workers lies in ruins. The decline of unions has consigned powerless workers to exploitative workplaces. And the tax system has been perverted to liberate the wealthiest 1 per cent from paying their fair share.

  • Why Morneau got cold feet over ridding Canada of tax credits

    To combat a structural problem requires a structural solution… First… An independent committee can be tasked with delivering a bundle of reforms to be accepted or rejected as a whole… Second, the process should deliver a clear and transparent benefit to all taxpayers… Third, any new tax measure should by law become subject to a mandatory review for effectiveness after a set number of years.

  • Tax Fairness? Maybe Next Year, Say Liberals

    Closing unfair and ineffective tax loopholes could have raised $16 billion. They failed to deliver, again, on their election promise to end the stock options deduction that gives almost a billion dollars to some of the richest people in Canada. They failed to make the tax system simpler or fairer… How long before regular taxpayers conclude that the promise of fair system was an empty one?

  • Liberals defer major tax pledge in 2017 federal budget

    … Ottawa chose to hold off on a campaign pledge to raise billions in new revenue by closing tax loopholes that benefit high-income Canadians… But Mr. Morneau is promising to present a paper later this year that will outline potential tax changes that could affect upper-income earners, particularly those who use corporate structures to pay less tax… the Liberals are now setting their sights on private business structures that still allow couples to split income for tax purposes.

  • Trump threatens to derail Trudeau’s economic fairness agenda

    Trump’s vow to cut U.S. taxes “bigly” does make it more difficult for Canada to raise its levies on the well-to-do, which Morneau has also been contemplating. Last year, the finance minister announced plans to look at tax breaks, sometimes called tax expenditures, which cost the federal treasury billions. But the Liberals will find it more difficult to boost taxes on the wealthy if, as expected, Trump’s America is going in the opposite direction.

  • Cutting the fiscal fat, finance ministers find lot of baloney

    Every budget dollar is precommitted to: debt service (approximately 9 per cent), transfers for health, education etc. (24 per cent), guaranteed spending for Old Age Security and Guaranteed Income Supplement etc. (17 per cent), and salaries and pensions for its own employees (29 per cent). When all the obligatory spending is sliced from the budget pie, every Canadian finance minister is left with about 20 cents of the budget dollar.

  • Ottawa should end unfair and ineffective tax breaks

    Every year, the federal government forgoes about $100 billion through so-called tax expenditures… [The Minister should eliminate]: 1. The tax break on executive stock options… half a billion dollars of forgone revenue to subsidize 75 very rich people … 2. The tax credit on corporate dividends… skewed toward the rich… and 3. The Canada Education Savings Grant… the $900-million annual grant disproportionately benefits the well-off.

  • It’s Time to Stop Subsidizing Canada’s Seniors

    … the days of this country’s senior citizens living in penury is over, and it has been for quite some time. The poverty rate for seniors in Canada is just 6.7 percent, a figure that’s lower than just about every other demographic—most of whom are asked to subsidize said seniors with their own tax dollars… One particularly ripe piece of low-hanging fruit is the age tax credit, which was established in 1972 to help low-income seniors pay their bills but now amounts to little more than a $3.4 billion annual giveaway.

  • A venture capitalist on how boomers wrecked America

    In the venture capitalist’s new book, A Generation of Sociopaths, he argues that since the 1970s, U.S. politicians have been essentially currying favour with baby boomers—and now, their entitlements (Social Security, Medicare) must be safeguarded… Gibney figures the U.S. is headed for a financial and environmental reckoning around the 2030s, when the median boomer will have died, having successfully “deferred” paying off his or her debts to society so that younger generations will have to take them up.

  • Alternative Federal Budget 2017: High Stakes, Clear Choices

    … we’re urging the federal government to table a budget that makes good on its promises to reduce income inequality and drive inclusive growth… the AFB proposes a federal budget that takes decisive action on what matters to Canadians: creating jobs, reducing income inequality, lowering poverty levels, closing unfair and expensive tax loopholes, and getting the economy moving.