August 13, 2014

Fraser Games – 3: “So even though that’s not true, why do you think that is?”

That’s one of my favourite lines from the Jon Stewart show.  Some things are so widely believed that, even when they’re wrong, they’re still taken as true.

Like: Canadians are paying more taxes than ever as government increases its bite.

They are, of course, not:

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Tax Index

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Iglika Ivanoa at CCPA elaborates:

Business and personal taxes rose as a share of family income in the 1960s and then again between 1975 and 1985. But taxes have been cut significantly since 1999 (by about 5% of income) and are lower than they were in 30 years ago in the 1980s.

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Hence the purpose of the Fraser Institute reports and stories:  “We’ve brought that info to the forefront so Canadians can basically tackle the question of whether they’re happy with that amount.”

Yeah, whether they’re happy, not whether what they perceive is true.   But once the perception is solidified, they can move on to the bigger agenda.  More on that later.

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  1. Or you can look at it this way – Increased productivity has made the cost of the necessities lower over time, however, our government has not been able to increase productivity at all. In fact they have gone the other way and actually increased the cost of delivering services.

    Classic example are the new Canadian Biometric passports that are going to cost twice as much as the previous ones but will last twice as long. Instead of decreeing the cost of service by decreasing the numbers of clerks and bureaucrats needed to issue half as many passports over the same period of time they are effectively increasing the cost of service per unit of work.

    The tax levels should be at worst staying stable and preferably going down as we as a society takes advantage of increased productivity.

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