In the run-up to international summits, Harper has been offering interviews to the US media, and yesterday in an interview with Fox News he insisted that he will not follow Barack Obama's lead by raising taxes.
Obama has devised a plan to produce revenue by taxing wealthy Americans and some select businesses. The plan seeks to provide the government with much needed revenue while also keeping in mind the difficult financial situations that common Americans find themselves in. The plan would seem to be perfect: it provides revenue when it is direly needed, and it taxes those that can afford to be taxed.
Harper argues that "[there] is no need in Canada to raise taxes" because we will have a surplus once this economic crisis blows over. He further asserts that the worst of the crisis will be over soon. However, what happens if the economic downturn lasts longer than our all-knowing Prime Minister and prophet predicts? His record with these predictions isn't too good after all. He told us there would be no need for a deficit, that we would easily weather this slight blip in our economy. So, sorry Stephen, but forgive us if we don't trust you much.
The plan put forward by Obama deals with this problem, ensuring revenue during difficult economic times. Moreover, the plan also addresses the great inequalities that have developed in our countries.
The earnings of Canadians have all remained steady or decreased since 1980, except for those among the richest 20% of Canadians. Their earnings have grown 16.4% during this period, while their polar opposites have seen their incomes shrink by 20.6%. Incomes in the middle have remained similar.
So this is not only an intelligent way of guaranteeing government revenue during the recession. Obama is using the recession as an opportunity to restore some equality to the socio-economic structure of his nation, which has been following the same trend as ours. Harper, on the other hand, is failing to take an opportunity to provide extra revenue to the government and to restore at least some equity to the socio-economic makeup of this country.
Don't worry, I've heard all those who will maintain that taxing at this time is the wrong thing to do; that it will hinder economic growth in a period when we need it the most. But as you usually are, you're harping on without looking at the facts. To establish whether or not a tax is an economic hindrance, you have to look at who's being taxed. In this case, it is the rich, and they have money to spare.
Taking some more money from the rich will not hurt them or the economy, and will provide a helping hand to those who need it most. The US government will have a new source of revenue and will be able to provide some social justice to its citizens, while from the north we lament our leaders for passing up on this wonderful opportunity to restore some equality and greater financial viability to Canada.
Recommend this Post at Progressive Bloggers
If you liked this post, please vote for my blog at Canadian Blogosphere
Monday, March 30, 2009
- Is this what we went to Afghanistan for?
- Harper refusing to follow Obama's lead on re-estab...
- Democracy in Canada
- Earth hour, a radical suggestion
- 800 less jobs at the CBC: an ideological conservat...
- The real opposition
- Donating to political parties
- Immigrants must speak an official language to acqu...
- Wish I worked for AIG
- Harper's at it again.
- ▼ March (10)