Overtaxed!

Al Hogan is right to be pushing this tax revolt! I was wrong!

Gotcha.

Statistics Canada just released its 2006 household spending data. Here is the average household expenditure on personal taxes:

AB $18,616
ONT 14,869
BC 13,929
CAN 13,634
MAN 12,282
SK 11,920
QC 11,218
NL 10,074
NS 10,074
NB 9,590
PEI 8,046

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0 Responses to Overtaxed!

  1. Anonymous says:

    Umm…

    The comprehensibility of this post is on par with the recently destroyed oldmaison.

    Are you saying we’re not taxed enough because we’re second on the list?

  2. mikel says:

    One small missing item though is the average household income. If you have a much higher income then obviously you will pay much more in taxes. Paying 10 grand on a 30 grand household income is a lot more than paying 20 grand on an 80 grand income.

    One of the big standouts is that the poorest new Brunswickers pay much higher percentages in tax than low wage earners in most other provinces. To deal with that problem many provinces have dropped the tax down to 5%, while in NB its twice that, third highest in the country.

  3. nbt says:

    Hogan will be right once the fiscal record of 2007, 2008 and 2009 sinks in. I have crunched some data on McKenna’s tax increase in ’94 and his consecutive years of deficit budgets.

    His fiscal record [coupled with Hatfield’s and Robicheau] set us back at least 50 years (maybe 80 yrs.?) since we’re still paying for it in public debt charges, out third largest spending evelope the last 15 years.

  4. mikel says:

    Ah yes, NBT, to be back in those golden years of the thirties! When nobody got an education and nobody got any health care. And you wonder why people don’t share your views?

    But essentially the above statement makes no sense. What fiscal record of 2009? Am I in a time warp here?

    People make the assumption that deficits are because of political decisions, which is crazy. The only way McKenna could have NOT had a deficit was by firing half the NB workforce (since they were in the higher tax brackets and some of their income was reclaimed by taxation).

    But again, taxes are horrendously low on that one segment of the population-the business one. Businesses and corporations pay very little, as we discussed, for small businesses with income less than 5 million the tax was like 2%. So as mentioned here five thousand times, taxes are NOT the problem. Debt charges are essentially covered by what the feds hand to New Brunswick, so any deficits certainly aren’t because of that.

    And IF taxes were a central problem we would have seen the number of businesses at the small end of the scale go through the roof-virtually every New Brunswicker would start making apple core dolls because they’d be paying so much less tax.

    So again, thats just one theory, and seems to be a bad one, but it’ll be interesting to see nBT’s ‘crunched numbers’, since statistics can be made to do just about anything (hence that ‘science’ known as ‘economics’).

    We know why people are being pinched and its not taxes, its because they are being paid squat. We even saw the business council come out and say that, and THEY are the ones paying people. So that’s a pretty good indication. And of course besides that is the very obvious point often made here that there is a sizeable percentage of the population that doesn’t even work full time for various reasons.

    You can believe Fraser (who of course MUST be right) but the CCPA recently did their own study and showed that ‘tax freedom day’ was actually much closer to the middle of march. However, as more things grow out of control, like the price of oil, which will mean paying more for EVERYTHING (wheres globalization when you need it eh?) then there will be more pressure to try to lower the only thing people have any chance of lowering-taxes.

  5. nbt says:

    mikel said: And you wonder why people don’t share your views?

    Huh? Maybe they don’t share your views:

    An Ipsos Reid poll, released yesterday, paints a picture of a population that is upbeat about the country’s economic prospects and Mr. Harper’s ability to manage the economy.

    A big chunk of the Canadian population says the ruling Conservatives should cut taxes to stimulate spending if the economy sours, according to a new national poll that also says a slim majority of Canadians would even accept the government chalking up a deficit under those circumstances.

    I’ll take a big chunk over a slim majority any day of the week. LOL

    Here’s two poll questions that caught my eye (your views in bold ;-0):

    7. As you may know, prior to the conservatives coming into power two years ago, previous Liberal governments ran up very large surpluses of taxpayer’s money. Last fall, Federal Finance Minister Jim Flaherty cut personal and business taxes by roughly $60-billion over six years which included reductions in the GST from 7% to 5%. As a result, there is very little surplus now for the government to spend on other initiatives. Do
    you think?

    Tax cuts are balanced and right 45%
    Tax cuts have gone too far 28%
    More tax cuts needed 24%

    8A. Now, some are suggesting that if there is a downturn in the economy and the federal government has fewer tax dollars to spend, there are a few things it could do. If you were the Finance Minister and had to make a choice, which would you choose?

    Cut taxes to stimulate growth 37%
    Freeze government spending 26%
    Raise taxes 14%

    I think it is you, mikel, that is out of touch. hee hee.

  6. nbt says:

    Oh, and another thing, did they raise the threshold to five million 4 small biz mikel?? That would be great, although I think it sits at around $400,000 down from $475,000 a few yrs ago provincially.

    Plus, small corporations earning up to $400,000 in profits are taxed at about 16% in New Brunswick (fed/provincial), which is 19.5 points less than the rate on income in excess of $400,000 or if they become public.

    So when you vault that [threshold] line as a company, firm or business, you are taxed even more.

    A recent Statistics Canada paper also showed that one of the significant reasons that Canada’s productivity rate is so poor is that we have an abundance of Lilliputian-type companies and insufficient larger companies in Canada.

    A point David has failed to make on this blog regarding multi-nationals vs. small biz. Even a McCains or Irving had to start somewhere? And if they were attempting to do it in the high taxed jurisdiction that is New Brunswick now (which is not pro-growth when it comes to business taxes), they would surely fail as David has reminded us so often about small biz. It’s time we got our house in order.

  7. Anonymous says:

    “An Ipsos Reid poll,”

    Aren’t “Ipsos Reid polls” generally wrong?

  8. mikel says:

    Dude, if Ipsos-Reid is where you get your polling data from you’ll never want for moonshine. I’d suggest you take a look at my old blog at blogcastnb.blogspot.com and check out the first graph there.

    IR is NOTORIOUS for its bad polling. The National Post is simply Harper’s ‘Fox Network’. Again, in the REAL world Canadians have said virtually every year since 1995 that they want more spending.

    That’s simply the media line, no different than in the states. Virtually the day after a local manufacturer here closed its doors the front page story of the local rag was “local economy is unstoppable”-right after 200 people lost their jobs. Even though the area is highly dependant on the US, the auto sector and R&D, NONE of which are ‘unstoppable’ thats the kind of propaganda the media spews out.
    That’s a strange argument about companies, as there is no data to suggest that one large company is by definition ‘more productive’ than numerous small companies. Productivity is ranked either by output, or hours worked, and company size has no bearing on either.

    As for productivity, that’s a bias from the outset. From 2006 data the US is the most productive economy in the world-but thats by standards of per hour labour. A slave can be very ‘productive’, that means nothing about higher standards of living, in fact it usually leads to lower.

    So you can look at France, which has now adopted a 35 work week and yet still has higher productivity than Canada.

    I don’t know where you get your info, I’ve never heard Statistics Canada make a claim like that, in fact a recent committee report to Parliament said the exact same thing that the OECD has said for years-that Canada still labours in its historic role in resources and doesn’t invest in R&D like every other country in the G-7 does.

    That sort of has a bearing on what you talk about with corporate innovation and the presence of large companies, most are branch plants of other companies and so don’t have the freedom to do R&D, thats done at the ‘home office’.

    Recent tax changes to help corporations be ‘more competitive’ ‘help productivity’ by replacing humans with machines, which are obviously more productive. That’s not necessarily good, in fact in many cases its bad if you aren’t investing in the education to make those people productive in other areas.

    Canada ranks near the bottom of the G-7 in productivity, but the only reason Canada is even IN the G-7 is because of the americans. Canada is much higher than most of the world. But again, where we rank lowest is innovation and thats R&D. The OECD has NEVER mentioned tax structure as an impediment to productivity in Canada, in fact I can’t recall a SINGLE organization that has made that recommendation because they know full well that taxation is such a complex issue that you can easily have a situation such as in NB where the ‘rate’ may be high, yet where the companies, through loopholes, rebates, and even just lax enforcement means that they pay little.

    It’s no coincidence that two of the largest corporations in the world are headquartered in NB, yet the corporate sector only contributes 2-3% of the provincial budget, compared to 15% even in a place like Alberta, or 10% in PEI.

  9. Rob says:

    Irving and McCain’s are nowhere near the largest companies in the world, in terms of people or revenue. According to this list, they are not even in the top 500.

    As for the original post, I believe that it is no surprise that the poorest provinces in Canada pay the least in gross taxes. People who don’t make very much, or who don’t work at all, don’t pay very high taxes in general.

  10. nbt says:

    A slave can be very ‘productive’

    Interesting. And to think, I thought slavery was abolished in 1865. Silly me.

    I gotta keep reading this blog because I learn something every day. 😉

  11. mikel says:

    Absolutely, if you believe that then you’re WAY out of touch. Go read “Nobodies:Modern American Slave Labor and the Dark Side of the Global Economy”. In fact a similar thing exists in agriculture in Canada and even in sweatshops in Toronto.

    You can hear the author talk about it at the Carnegie Council podcast available here:

    http://www.cceia.org/resources
    /audio/data/000156

    Read the history of the Civil War. There is the common notion that the war was simply ‘against slavery’ which wasn’t even close to being true. In the 1800’s if you were irish you could starve to death or emigrate, but to emigrate you needed money, so you essentially sold yourself into servitude. Workers in the north, who did the majority of fighting, and women, who did most of the manufacturing, saw slavery as only the first step in the war, they were also fighting against what is essentially ‘wage slavery’-which isn’t that much different in many cases.

    In the states a lot of that productivity is simply workers trying to survive, you can watch Sicko and see the President talking to an elderly woman who talks about having THREE jobs. Yeah, thats ‘productive’, but productivity doesn’t necessarily mean anything good.

  12. NB taxpayer says:

    I watched Sicko. It was a waste of the $$$ to rent the DVD. I’ll pass on watching it again.

    Btw, I’m surprised you’re comfortable referencing a guy like Micheal Moore since you debunk me (and others) on the basis that we are skewing numbers and the truth (taking ppl out of context) in order to make a point.

  13. mikel says:

    I have no idea what that means. I didnt’ reference Michael Moore, I referenced the president talking to an elderly woman-thats simply the place where you can see it-and if you saw it then you know what I’m talking about and certainly don’t need to see it again. If you prefer, I can reference the white house communications department and you can email them and find that clip-or you can just watch sicko (again, not ‘your’ but anybody following this thread).

    If people are comfortable getting their info from Ipsos Reid thats their decision, as the poster before me stated, ‘aren’t they usually wrong’. And again, you can see how different their polls skew vs. all the other pollsters (combined). However, thats always a contentious issue-what canadians think, and polls are only one aspect of the equation. You can also simply ask the obvious question, that IF canadians are aging, meaning they are earning less, then why wouldn’t they suppor t more health services which they will most likely benefit from?

    But again, the information is up to individuals to decide for themselves, I’m simply disputing what I see with what I’ve read. We just did our taxes and were quite surprised with how little we pay in taxes, we couldn’t make RRSP payments this year for various reasons and thought we’d get creamed, but that wasn’t the case. Like most people we don’t have tons of money, and we are high income earners, but taxes certainly aren’t out of hand for us.

    However, where I’d agree with NBT is if THIS govenrment raised taxes since I do not want my taxes going to police or military. So if somebody asked in a poll ‘do you think taxes are too high’, then I MAY say ‘yes’ because taxes aren’t going to the causes I believe they should.

  14. NB taxpayer says:

    After reading your “all over the map” rhetoric and rants mikel, I’m quite surprised you didn’t try to convince me that I have one eye and three legs (without ever having met me). Although, I’m sure if I tried to tell you straight up that that wasn’t the case at all, you would somehow say the mirror is lying and that I am out of line for suggesting i don’t.

    I have to admit, you’re a tough guy to argue with since you never stick to your guns on anything, you just argue for the sake of trying to counter a point. I still don’t clearly know wher you stand on a host of issues. That’s quite a sad commentary since you have spilled more virtual ink to fill ten thousand blogs.

  15. mikel says:

    That’s pretty much the whole idea dude. As you say, if I am just reacting to your (or other) posts then obviously if I”M all over the map then that’s because whoever I am responding to is-as the above shows pretty clearly. I’m pretty happy about that too and I’m thankful that your comments are all over the map as I’ve recently heard several stories about who reads these blogs and I hope they check out that podcast mentioned above, as well as many others at the carnegie council.

    I don’t see why its ‘too bad’, in fact thats the very essence of debate. People see an idea, then see an opposing, or at least composite idea. I assume that’s what you’re posting here for as well.

    As I’ve said numerous times, most of those rebuttals are not MINE-I suspect if you went through the tombs I have written I might seem like a lot smarter person than I actually am, they come from a source -which I usually try to footnote, and usually a source that is NOT the mainstream press-but sometimes is. Most of the rebuttals to your arguments are NEVER mine, they come straight from the OECD, which is FAR from ‘left’ or even centrist.

    Or of course its also common sense-if a government needs money, you take it from those who have it, because not only do they have it, but they have it BECAUSE of public policy that let them get it in the first place. It’s also common sense (I think) that those who HAVE it, of course are not going to want to give it back, and its not a contentious remark to state that they overwhelmingly control the political sphere. Therein lies the problem, and its been THE problem as far back as we have records. Sometimes its less of a problem, but its getting more and more the problem-almost obviously so.

    But as you’ve noticed I’m not exactly shy with the comments, so if you don’t know ‘where I stand’ on an issue its because its never been brought up or something that I care so little about or where I agree with whomever said it and have nothing to add. Although i doubt thats very important, there are lots of issues I don’t know where David stands, but who cares?

    This is pretty much dead, so before it gets tossed into the unread ether I’d just like to add that Sicko is easily the most important documentary to come out in years, even moreso than Fahernheit, which pretty much just restated stuff that was already pretty public.

    It was worth it if only to see those volunteers from 9/11 finally get some health care.

    It’s well known where Michael Moore plays fast and loose with his subjects, ten minutes on youtube will tell you that. That doesn’t discount what he’s saying or the people he talks to. I can understand perhaps why it would be discounted, since anybody who knows anythign about canada knows its not nearly as rosy as Moore indicates. In the movie that’s well established-after discussing emergency medicine in Canada he quickly heads off to Europe to discuss Britain-where even drugs are covered (as well as Cuba we can add), and to France, where government services to the population are beyond most canadians dreams.

    I suggest every canadian see it, and critically, and learn more about Canada’s health care system, which is becoming more like the US’s, and less like europe’s. And again, thats completely contrary to what polls show canadians want.