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Plucking the Canada Goose

Tue, August 22, 2017   |   Author: Peter Vogel   |   Volume 24    Issue 34   

How many feathers can you take off of a goose before it can’t fly anymore? That question alone is cruel and not something that should be tried! But this is essentially the way that governments, especially Liberal governments in Canada, approach taxation. The latest victims the Liberal government is trying to fleece include some farmers and doctors!

If businesses (in this case, private corporations) are still airborne, there is probably still another tax that they can handle, another “feather that can be plucked.”

The problem for governments in Canada, however, is that like Canada Geese, businesses go south when things get too cold up here. Unlike Canada Geese, they just won’t come back next spring!

Some call it a “brain-drain” and some call it voting with their feet, but many young enterprising Canadians have gone down to the USA over the years to seek a more prosperous life than they could have had in Canada. This is bad for Canada’s economy and morale.

While it is relatively easy for medical professionals to take off, farmers tend to put down roots and stay in the same area, some for many generations. The growing number of farms that have become private corporations will soon be feeling the negative effects of tax reforms that the Liberal government is implementing.

Being registered as private corporations has been helpful for medium to larger family farms; this has allowed all the members of the family to hold shares in the enterprise and has allowed income to be split in more ways. The government must see this as a loophole, and they are trying to close it by complicating the rules related to tax exemptions and proof of work done for the corporation, a challenging technicality for many farms where some members might help out more indirectly.

The overall reform is supposed to crack down on the wealthy who are not paying enough (according to the Liberals) but it will also hit middle-class business owners. Was it not the “middle class and those working hard to join it” that our Prime Minister promised to help (before he gained office)?

Getting back to the rich who are supposedly “not paying enough tax”, they are paying about 51.6%, combined provincial and federally, on incomes in excess of $202,800. Businesses that make more than $500,000 a year are taxed at 48%, but in the USA, they are taxed at 41%; wouldn’t you think about moving south with these figures in mind?

“The rich” need to be encouraged to stay here and grow their businesses so that they will employ more people. If they get discouraged and leave, we all lose because jobs will be lost and, of course, the tax revenue.

Governments must not be greedy. They must not always look for “revenue tools” that increase their cash-flow. Instead, they should look for ways to decrease the amount of money they need so that money can do its work in the economy without involving the government at every turn. When taxpayers see that their government is not always trying to raise taxes, but instead working wisely with the money they are taking in, morale and confidence will increase and that is good for the economy!

The CHP believes in income splitting, in family businesses, in fair taxation, and in smaller, more accountable government. If you are not a member and you believe Canada needs these policies, join the CHP and pass this message along to others!

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