A recent newspaper editorial asked WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO GIVE UP? In order to solve the “Climate Crisis”
For 90% of Canadians — very little needs to be given up. Have the 90% give up paying income tax on wages, on their work and production. Tax instead what is not beneficial to them or their country, like carbon, imports, and excessive consumption. Have the 5% of Canadians who speculate in the stock market, give up the building of harmful asset bubbles. Instead, restore productive investment in a green “real” economy. Have those with high incomes give up their tax loopholes and tax them to reflect the contribution of past and present Canadians to their good fortune.
The shortcoming of the editorial is that is sees things as they are rather than they as they could be. Where you talk of “give up” something, I would talk about “making choices”. As when fighting World War, we may face immediate shortages, even leading to rationing, during the climate crisis war. But in war days, the sacrifices and resources were shared. During the last 50 years there has been little sharing. While productivity increased, that increase went to the wealthy few. I fear that the editors, and our legislators lack the experience of the “Golden Years”,of the 50’s, 60’s and 1970’s, and think in terms of the “failed neoliberal experiment” of the last 50 years.
Another newspaper article stated that “Canada’s Trade Deficit shrinks”. The article was a valiant effort to help Canadians feel better than they should about the disaster of Trade Deficit. Hooray ! We now have a trade surplus with one country, and only one. This thanks to a sudden increase in natural resources exports and unusual activity in our highly subsidized aircraft industry. Canadians should be told how we are able to have more imports than exports and why.
HOW is by foreign investment in Canadian industry and housing. Investment that will have to be repaid, with profits, by our current and future generations, when exports may be even lower. The WHY is because of our taxation policies. We add the tax on wages, profits, real estate, electricity and much more to the price of goods and services produced in Canada. Not only does that make Canadian goods less competitive with imports, but also less competitive as exports. We can only have fair trade when imports bear equal taxes. This country was built on tariffs and now is being destroyed by trade deals.