Tax fairness. It’s been on many a Canadian’s lips since Bill Morneau two-left-footed his way to announcing a listening tour across Canada, for his tax reform proposals on Canadian-controlled private corporations (CCPC).
A tour that ran head long into a Blitzkrieg. From Andrew Scheer’s gleeful Conservative Party, to Ontario doctors seemingly ready for any fight, including amongst themselves, to lawyers, accountants, small farmers, and left-leaning voters accustomed to spitting out Trudeau’s name, the pile-on was sizeable and surgical.
And, for the most part, false. Yes, THAT false.
Talk of middle class assault at the hands of the Liberals, doctors up and leaving Canada or refusing to service their patients, a ninety-three percent tax rate, a seventy-three percent tax hike, female doctors using passive investments as a means to fund maternity leaves or dire straights predicted for farmers flashed on television and digital screens across Canada.
The latter two groups have justifiable cause for concern with the Liberal government’s proposed tax reform. And it sounds like their concerns will be addressed when Morneau announces amendments to the original proposals.
But the rest of the vitriol was hogwash, repeated by special interests or politicians looking to make hay with with ill-informed tweeters and Facebook users.
I might add, aided and abetted by an unprepared Minister of Finance.
Continue reading Blitzkrieg on Tax Reform
Last week, I took part in a discussion on Twitter regarding the best way for Canadians to respond to Kellie Leitch’s celebration of Donald Trump’s victory. While I initially argued (social) media’s focus on her divisive tactics merely fed her free airtime and eyeballs, a very astute and prolific tweeter reminded me ignoring these tactics in the U.S. propelled Trump’s momentum.
And the absolute need to call it what it is.
Continue reading Kellie Leitch’s Unique Canadian Identity
A national economy underpinned by the extraction and export of Alberta’s oilsands.
A Canadian mission, the nexus of which, six CF-18 fighter jets, contributes two percent of all sorties, to the global fight against the Islamic State.
The former disintegrating steadily, and piercing every region across Canada, as the price of oil plumbs depths not seen in a generation or two.
The latter, the public flagpole upon which many fly their security blanket.
As if something as complex as a national economy or response to a group of barbaric thugs intent on recreating a caliphate in a region of mistrusting and murdering factions, can be whittled down to one variable.
One narrow element that will act as a sole pillar on which governments define, plan, and act, as Stephen Harper’s government did, from 2006-2015.
Continue reading The Middle East: The Liberals’ plan strives for more
The strategic, pragmatic, secure, proven leader.
Adjectives, repeated by journalists, conservative politicians and supporters during his nine-year tenure as Canada’s prime minister.
Adjectives, some of which, aptly describe his Machiavellian gamesmanship in the art and science of politics.
Adjectives and a positioning, in contrast to his administration and its implications for Canada.
From the time he prorogued Parliament, Act I, Stephen Harper pursued a high risk, low reward economic plan, focused on one industry.
One industry in need of a low-cost transportation method to move landlocked oilsands bitumen to refineries in the United States and markets overseas.
Calling himself a friend to this one industry, Harper proceeded to expunge environmental and waterways regulations and standards. In cahoots with Canada’s security agencies, the federal government spied on any parties objecting to oilsands expansion, and obstructed any and all attempts at legitimate carbon pricing.
He also used hundreds of millions of public dollars to advertise the virtues of Alberta’s oilsands in North America and Europe. Under cover. At least until recently.
Continue reading Harper’s Leadership: Not so secure, not so pragmatic, not so proven
In the weeks ahead, I will be referring to Unifor’s comprehensive report comparing the economic record of the various governments that have formed to lead Canada from 1946 to 2015.
From Mackenzie King to Stephen Harper, Jim Stanford methodically analyzes all factors that contribute to economic performance of any nation. While you may be quick to dismiss the report because of its source, the political cartoons which it could have done without, and its conclusions, it is hard to dismiss the stark statistical evidence.
I strongly encourage you to review this report. Its an eye-opening exercise that may inform you in a way you least expect.