View Poll Results: Can a nation tax its way to prosperity?

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  • Yes

    7 11.48%
  • No

    44 72.13%
  • Other

    10 16.39%
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Thread: Can A Nation Tax Itself Into Prosperity?

  1. #141
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    Re: Can A Nation Tax Itself Into Prosperity?

    Quote Originally Posted by CanadaJohn View Post
    When this conservative said I want smaller government, that's exactly what I meant. I never suggested that governments on the right are devoid of plans and policies that support reelection to the detriment of the country as a whole - all governments these days seem to do that, to the great disgust of most conservatives. I have no interest in government buying favour from big business. I'd eliminate most business incentives and payouts in favour of lower corporate tax rates - likewise, I'd eliminate most personal tax deductions in favour of overall lower personal tax rates.

    As for welfare and social programs to support those who temporarily are in trouble or who are handicapped or otherwise unable to support themselves, that falls under protection of the citizens that I spoke of before. You should have noted that I included healthcare and security of all citizens as core functions of government. So I'm not sure who you feel I "disdain" or what my particular "pet projects" may be. It seems you haven't comprehended anything I've posted in this thread because it doesn't fit with your view of conservatives.
    Hmmm...so, if I am reading you correctly, you support social programs that take care the sick, elderly, aged, temporarily unemployed, or those facing a life crisis of similar proportion- pretty much what we have today, and solid NDP territory, by the way. Your also support the criminal justice system, national defense, education, medicare, and other programs that take up the lion's share of government expenditure.

    You are not in favor of business incentives, although clearly it depends what kind of incentive we are talking about. China has piled on incentives to produce an industrial, exporting economy, and it has paid off big time. In the corner of the country where I live, business has received strong incentive to locate high tech and film industry locally, and it has paid off handsomely.

    You want to lower both personal and corporate tax rates (already at historical lows), and cut out the extraneous functions of "big government". What are those functions? What would you cut out of the system that would be significant?

    Big government has become a cliche of the political right, yet, beyond the obvious of elements of corruption and foolishness that can be found in any large organization, and tends to resist total elimination, big government is merely a reflection of a big society. That is, society has grown in size and complexity in recent times, and regulation and administration along with it. Transferring these functions to the private sector just creates a different paradigm, with its own set of problems.

  2. #142
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    Re: Can A Nation Tax Itself Into Prosperity?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ganesh View Post
    Hmmm...so, if I am reading you correctly, you support social programs that take care the sick, elderly, aged, temporarily unemployed, or those facing a life crisis of similar proportion- pretty much what we have today, and solid NDP territory, by the way. Your also support the criminal justice system, national defense, education, medicare, and other programs that take up the lion's share of government expenditure.

    You are not in favor of business incentives, although clearly it depends what kind of incentive we are talking about. China has piled on incentives to produce an industrial, exporting economy, and it has paid off big time. In the corner of the country where I live, business has received strong incentive to locate high tech and film industry locally, and it has paid off handsomely.

    You want to lower both personal and corporate tax rates (already at historical lows), and cut out the extraneous functions of "big government". What are those functions? What would you cut out of the system that would be significant?

    Big government has become a cliche of the political right, yet, beyond the obvious of elements of corruption and foolishness that can be found in any large organization, and tends to resist total elimination, big government is merely a reflection of a big society. That is, society has grown in size and complexity in recent times, and regulation and administration along with it. Transferring these functions to the private sector just creates a different paradigm, with its own set of problems.
    My comments are no more "solid NDP territory" than they are "solid Conservative territory" - all those things you claim are solidly NDP have been advanced and enhanced by Conservative governments. Where Conservatives and the NDP differ is in the desire of the latter to spend taxpayer dollars on areas related to personal responsibility and far outside of core government functions. As an example, the NDP wants to initiate a national childcare program, highly subsidizing childcare on the backs of taxpayers, similar to the program established in Quebec that uses $billions in transfer payments from other Canadian Provinces to provide a service their own taxpayers aren't willing to pay for themselves.

    Where I differ from the Conservative government, as an example, is in their move to highly subsidize "families" through tax policy and their move to allow income pooling that will reduce the tax paid on high income where a lower paid or non-employed spouse is in the equation. I believe there is no overriding national interest served by these "choosing winners" policies and the $billions foregone or spent to fund these initiatives would have been better used to fund across the board tax relief for all taxpayers.

    As for government support/incentive for business, as I've said I don't support it and it should be incredibly rare. As an example, I strongly opposed the bailouts of Chrysler and GM - the auto industry is sufficiently entrenched and mature and is not in need of propping up. If it can't produce products that are desired by the public at a price that is acceptable to the public, then they should cease to exist and let those that can produce such products do it. Likewise, oil and gas giants don't need or deserve government incentives and/or tax breaks.

    I don't know how many times I have to say it before you actually get it but I'll say it once again. I believe government should restrict itself to core functions that benefit and/or protect the entire jurisdiction and the entire population and not be creative in establishing policies and programs that social engineer in whatever manner they support - that goes for governments of all political stripes.
    A Canadian conservative is one who believes in limited government and that the government should stay out of our wallets and out of our bedrooms.

  3. #143
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    Re: Can A Nation Tax Itself Into Prosperity?

    I voted other. How can there be prosperity while putting so much money into war for corporate profit? Like the middle east for example. Let the oil and oil service companies hire their own mercenaries to protect their operations over there. They profit so much, and then do everything possible to pay little or no taxes. Immigration next. How to have prosperity when allowing nothing to offer but being needy, third worlders, to come to USA in such large amounts of people that the very nature of this country is changing. Both major parties are for this although republicans pretend their against it.

  4. #144
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    Re: Can A Nation Tax Itself Into Prosperity?

    Quote Originally Posted by CanadaJohn View Post
    My comments are no more "solid NDP territory" than they are "solid Conservative territory" - all those things you claim are solidly NDP have been advanced and enhanced by Conservative governments. Where Conservatives and the NDP differ is in the desire of the latter to spend taxpayer dollars on areas related to personal responsibility and far outside of core government functions. As an example, the NDP wants to initiate a national childcare program, highly subsidizing childcare on the backs of taxpayers, similar to the program established in Quebec that uses $billions in transfer payments from other Canadian Provinces to provide a service their own taxpayers aren't willing to pay for themselves.
    Medicare was introduced (among much conservative angst) by the CCF (now NDP) government of Saskatchewan. EI and the federal OAP were introduced under liberal governments, and EI saw it most generous period under the leftest liberal government of Trudeau the 1st. This is by the by, but quite clearly social welfare programs find more favor generally in left leaning parties than in rightist ones.

    The childcare program is hypothetical at this point, but it does raise some interesting notions. Conservatives love the term "on the backs of taxpayers". It conjures up the most graphic images of poor peons, struggling under heavy weights. Some spin meister probably paid good money for that phrase. But what does it mean? Those same backs are no doubt standing straighter under such programs, as they benefit the vast majority of taxpayers. I'm sure you see where this is going. When government funds programs, it doesn't spend money, in the same sense as an individual, it redistributes it. A few dollars that were going to help pay for your new yacht now find their way into a daycare center somewhere. Is this a good use of funds? That's up for grabs, but we can be sure that some redistribution is going to take place, unless you prefer the social structure of a Somalia or an El Salvador. The average taxpayer has a family, both parents work, and their income is modest. How do you think their backs feel?

    We can take a step back, and also look at things from a more philosophical viewpoint. Where is the line between personal and community responsibility? Daycare makes it easier for both partners to work, and hence contribute to the economy and tax revenue. Good for society, yes? And even if they don't both want to work, there is often no choice. Today's prices, real estate prices in particular, have become geared to a two income family. No one voted for this, it just evolved. In effect, society says: both of you work. Great, but who stays home and looks after the kids? Conservatives tend to like to see things in black and white, and in snappy phrases, but often reality is more complex.


    Quote Originally Posted by CanadaJohn View Post
    Where I differ from the Conservative government, as an example, is in their move to highly subsidize "families" through tax policy and their move to allow income pooling that will reduce the tax paid on high income where a lower paid or non-employed spouse is in the equation. I believe there is no overriding national interest served by these "choosing winners" policies and the $billions foregone or spent to fund these initiatives would have been better used to fund across the board tax relief for all taxpayers.
    And just what "winner" is being chosen here? Most Canadians, I feel confident in saying, loosely fit that category- one partner in a family has a higher paying income (often the male), and the other a lower income. It is tax relief for the masses, something you like, no?

  5. #145
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    Re: Can A Nation Tax Itself Into Prosperity?

    Quote Originally Posted by CanadaJohn View Post
    ......As for government support/incentive for business, as I've said I don't support it and it should be incredibly rare. As an example, I strongly opposed the bailouts of Chrysler and GM - the auto industry is sufficiently entrenched and mature and is not in need of propping up. If it can't produce products that are desired by the public at a price that is acceptable to the public, then they should cease to exist and let those that can produce such do it. Likewise, oil and gas giants don't need or deserve government incentives and/or tax breaks.

    I don't know how many times I have to say it before you actually get it but I'll say it once again. I believe government should restrict itself to core functions that benefit and/or protect the entire jurisdiction and the entire population and not be creative in establishing policies and programs that social engineer in whatever manner they support - that goes for governments of all political stripes.
    OK, let's start a list. You think these should be outside of government effort: Daycare, tax breaks for families, bailouts for large corporations. Daycare is a double edged sword, as outlined above. In fact, I think (could be wrong) the NDP has produced some stats on this, that indicate a net gain for society. Tax policy in undoubtedly an essential tool of any government, and in this case, it is hard to see what you are against, as it represents a reduction in taxes, one of your key points. Bailouts? I agree with you there, at least in the case where they are a product of insider lobbying and special interests, rather than a part of long term, hard-header economic planning. But that's hardly a conservative viewpoint. Canada has one of the lowest corporate tax rates in the developed world, and is not shy about supporting big business, and this is under a conservative government.

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