Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Have You Signed Yet?

Despite all of his sanctimonious talk about tax fairness, there is little evidence thus far that Justin Trudeau is committed to anything more than indulging in his standard soaring rhetoric. Now, there is a a petition being circulated on that seeks to change that.

As reported in today's Star, the petition
was launched by advocacy group Democracy Watch after the Star, in partnership with Corporate Knights magazine, published an investigation last month that showed how individuals pay three-and-a-half times more income tax than corporations.
An excerpt from the petition offers these disquieting statistics:
Canada's official corporate tax rate is now 26.6% but, on average, Canadian big businesses paid only 17.7% from 2011-2016 -- one of the lowest rates of all G7 countries.

Canada's Big Banks paid a tax rate of only 16% over the past 6 years -- lower than banks in other G7 countries. They are the biggest tax evaders of all Canadian big businesses and, not surprisingly, also the most profitable. They made a record $42.3 billion in profits in 2017.
And that lost tax money could have been used to accomplish so much good:
If Canada's big businesses and banks paid the official tax rate from 2011-2016, governments across Canada would have almost $64 billion more to spend on making hospitals, schools, housing, public transit and roads better, and on other things Canadians need.
Given the sociopathic nature of corporations, they will never pay any more than they have too. Their much vaunted 'fudiciary responsibility to shareholders' is the tenet by which they justify their efforts at tax avoidance and cheating others out of their rightful due.

Consider, for example, Sears Canada. Francine Kopun writes:
Handsome dividends paid to Sears Canada shareholders even as the company was faltering and its employee pension fund was running a deficit are being reviewed by the court-appointed monitor handling the company’s insolvency.

The transactions of interest, according to the monitor, include a dividend of $102 million paid to Sears Canada shareholders on Dec. 21, 2012, and $509 million paid on Dec. 6, 2013.
The problem is, Sears was already seriously bleeding cash when the dividend was issued, and guess who paid the price? The Sears pension plan.
The pension deficit was $307 million in 2010 and $133 million in 2013.

When the company sought creditor protection in June, the pension fund had a deficit of $270 million, potentially leaving retirees with reduced incomes.

“Certainly from our standpoint, we felt that the payments of dividends, when the company was not making money and there was no investment in the company and there was a debt to the pension plan, were inappropriate,” said Ken Eady, a spokesperson for Sears Canada retirees.
Companies will never act with integrity on their own. That is why the role of government is essential in moderating their greed.

Please give serious consideration to signing the petition at


  1. .. the salamander horde wishes the world was a fair place

    ( Its not )

    We are careful re our IP and recognize that being outspoken comes with some risk.. Running multiple blogs, sites etc.. re literary efforts, photography or historical docus .. not to mention almost 25,000 tweets we see the blowback & also that our data does get sold, transferred, shared etc. Thus we do not respond to requests or directions to 'retweet if you.. fill in the blanks'. We strive to strip addresses when responding... ie Andrew Scheer can rest easy.. Peter Kent, not so much, or Tony Clement.. Michelle Rempel is spared aussi.. as Kinsella's wondrous spouse is her best friend.. and besides, Lisa & Warren stuck their necks way out to go after a local rascist hate rag in the Beach(es) Street cred is big.. especially if you work the street.

    .. OpinioNation comes with a price.. the crap comments I filter through at highly respected blogs like yours.. is astonishing at times. But I get phone calls, emails, highly directed aimed tweets, from anywhere in North America.. so we have a sense of how free & floating 'data' is.. My advice to threats by louts is to bring a lot of help.. I don't fight fair.. I'll be behind you when you bang on my door.. or on my neighbor's roof or in a tree and the range to my front door or backdoor or windows have been lased within an inch.. it won't end well

    Who would not love to see a list of sources.. the Conservative Party of Canada has built their massive 'Nation Builder' voter database upon? Keep in mind what resources a majority government can call upon.. RCMP, CSIS, CRA.. etc.. to meld together a staggering invasion of privacy.. Surely you read of the Canadian selling billions of identities.. BILLIONS !

    Every time I am pulled over for a random breathalyser test, I get a crypric look from a polite officer.. many of whom say.. 'I don't get it.. you're one of the good guys?' The triple maximum security background clearance to anywhere public transport functions helps.. airports, rumways, train stations, clearance to accompany known drug addicted juveniles offenders.. anywhere in public.. or extremely violent troubled emotionally disturbed youths helps.. but how many Canadians are cut such slack?

    These are troubled times.. Lorne
    .. keep The Art of War handy..
    Remain watchful, unpredictable..
    resourceful.. thoughful..

    eh !

  2. During the Harper years I repeatedly bemoaned the opposition complacency, Liberal and New Dem, to Harper's quest to shift Canada's political centre well and permanently to the neoliberal right. When Harper was toppled and by a majority Liberal government I dared to hope that Trudeau would right Canada's political keel. I watched with enthusiasm as he plucked a few low-hanging fruit but that was only for show. One by one electoral reform, 'social licence', First Nations consultation, and so much more were jettisoned into the political ditch, their place taken by 'job churn,' KPMG/Isle of Man, the Panama Papers, Israel/Palestine and other outrages. Every time he reneged on a deal, every time he broke a solemn promise it was always with the same excuse that his hands were tied. More often than not that was a lie. Yet don't we live in an age of preposterous dissembling too readily swallowed?

    1. Until and unless we expose ourselves to realities in other parts of the world such as found in Scandinavia, Mound, Canadians will continue to believe the poor excuses offered us for maintaining the status quo. I read a piece recently in the NYT, for examples, that shows how things can be quite, quite different from the neoliberalism we are currently infected with: