Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Carbon Tax: Bad Idea

As the price of food and fuel steadily climb, the Liberals are “seriously considering” making things worse by introducing a regressive carbon tax. This is a terrible idea both politically and otherwise. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/LAC.20080428.DION28/TPStory/National
The Liberals are not going to win an election with a new tax as the cornerstone of their campaign. Stick with a cap and trade system.

There is no such thing as “revenue neutral” carbon tax and that is way Gordon Campbell, who despite what people in Toronto might think is only slightly more progressive than Mike Harris, likes it so much. (Gordan Campbell cut the minimum wage for Christ sakes people.) It is a way of shifting more of the tax burden onto lower income earners. Students, for example, do not pay much if anything in the way of income taxes. They are going to see there costs of living shoot up dramatically.

As for the Liberals most recent blather about the economy, it is nice to see them waking up to the fact that the Conservatives want to limit the ability of Federal government to expand social services. However, the Liberals need to offer an alternative vision, complete with concrete policies that will benefit all Canadians. The longer the Liberals go without re-embracing universality the more academic, hypothetical and distant such warnings become.

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