Death and taxes: the fundamental unfairness of taxing estates

We already have too many taxes in Canada. And they tend to be unfair, inefficient and oppressive. We don't need another

Death and taxes: the fundamental unfairness of taxing estatesA long-dead and largely unlamented tax has recently been rediscovered and embraced by certain people: the death tax, or estate tax. But inheritance taxes were abolished in Canada in 1971 by the Liberal government when a capital gains tax was introduced. In Canada, estates are already taxed on the difference between the market value of…

The Liberal government’s tax plan a failure

Politicians treat successful Canadians as natural resources to be annually harvested and squeezed for as much money as possible

The Liberal government’s tax plan a failureA few years ago, the federal Liberals told Canadians that they would help the middle class by raising taxes on the rich. According to the early evidence, the plan has flopped. This was entirely predictable. In 2015, the C.D. Howe Institute (formerly chaired by the current federal finance minister) called the policy a “losing proposition.”…

Healthy nations need healthy boundaries

If the world has anything to teach Canada, it’s not how to treat migrants. It’s how to deliver health care for its own

Healthy nations need healthy boundariesAre you a big-hearted person who likes to help everyone? If so, you probably suffered a phase where you offered too much of yourself: heart, time and money. Then you realized if you gave out too much, you would just plain give out. Despite your best efforts, there would always be more people in need…

The subsidy table is set, and actors and writers will dine

The CRTC has backed away from a 21st-century funding model for the creation of Canadian content. We'll all be poorer as a result

The subsidy table is set, and actors and writers will dineThe leaders of Canada’s creative rebellion have emerged victorious after two years of struggle. That means consumers will almost certainly pay more for years to come for their much-loved Canadian television content. The news came just prior to the Labour Day weekend. The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) issued a decision confirming that it…

A tale of two cities and their wildly different spending habits

Vancouver taxes and spends far more than neighbouring Surrey. But do Vancouverites get value for their greater investment?

A tale of two cities and their wildly different spending habitsBy Josef Filipowicz and Charles Lammam The Fraser Institute With three levels of government delivering a wide array of services to British Columbians – paid for by an equally wide array of taxes, fees and transfers – it can be difficult for citizens to understand and assess government taxation and spending – especially at city…

Alberta’s job recovery brings its own set of problems

Instead of a recovering private sector economy, Alberta has simply expanded its government sector

Alberta’s job recovery brings its own set of problemsBy Charles Lammam and Brennan Sorge The Fraser Institute Premier Rachel Notley’s government has repeatedly pointed to total employ­ment figures as a sign that Alberta has recovered from the recent recession. For instance, the premier recently said “our economy is recovering … and created 90,000 new jobs last year.” But to better understand the state…

How to address social inequality without an inheritance tax

Ideas about taxing, restricting or abolishing your inheritance have been floated by western social thinkers for centuries

How to address social inequality without an inheritance taxShould Canadians be taxed on inheritance? The question is increasingly being asked, but the answer is not straight-forward. This discussion is inherently linked to maintaining inequality from one generation to another – and basically to a skewing of the playing field of life from the start. Such debates aren’t new. In fact, they centre on…

Average workers will ultimately pay B.C.’s new payroll tax

Health tax will reduce wages and job opportunities, and further erode the province’s investment climate

Average workers will ultimately pay B.C.’s new payroll taxBy Charles Lammam and Taylor Jackson The Fraser Institute B.C. Finance Minister Carole James called Medical Services Plan (MSP) premiums “unfair” and argued in a news release that her government’s replacement Employer Health Tax (EHT) is a “much fairer and progressive approach.” More broadly, Premier John Horgan government’s rhetoric about the new tax suggests it…

Lining up for another government payout

Should every Indigenous person who was required to attend day school be compensated?

Lining up for another government payoutCBC reports that a class-action lawsuit against the federal government has been authorized on behalf of Indigenous students who attended day schools in Canada. It seeks damages for every Indigenous student who attended. There are an estimated 100,000 such people alive. The lawsuit could result in a payout of at least the $5 billion that…

Pouring money down the corporate welfare drain

Billions of Canadian taxpayers’ dollars go into ventures that don’t need or waste the money. And there is little oversight

Pouring money down the corporate welfare drainWhat do the federal government, responsibility and transparency have in common? When it comes to handing money to corporations, not much. Working-class Canadians watch helplessly as their hard-earned money is taxed away to be put into the laps of large businesses – often the same ones that receive it year after year. These dollar amounts…

Canada needs a bold response to U.S. business tax cuts

Reducing corporate taxes doesn’t distort economic decisions or add complexity to the tax system. It does spur the economy

Canada needs a bold response to U.S. business tax cutsBy Charles Lammam and Brennan Sorge The Fraser Institute According to a recent statement by Finance Minister Bill Morneau, the fall federal budget update will finally outline the government’s response to major business tax changes by the Trump administration in the United States. Unfortunately, Ottawa took a long time to even acknowledge we have a…

Monsanto lawsuit ruling leaves Bayer in need of more Aspirin

Monsanto, now a division of Bayer, ordered to pay $289M to a single plaintiff. Even if Monsanto’s brands no longer exist, its legacy remains

Monsanto lawsuit ruling leaves Bayer in need of more AspirinIn California, where lawsuits can be found more easily than drinking water, German chemical giant Bayer has been dealt a huge legal blow. Monsanto, now a division of Bayer, was ordered to pay a whopping US$289 million in damages to a gardener suffering from cancer, allegedly from using Monsanto products. Given that more than 5,000 such…

Canadians pay a whopping 2,112% more in taxes now than in 1961

We pay more in taxes than we do for life's basic necessities like housing, food and clothing

Canadians pay a whopping 2,112% more in taxes now than in 1961Think you’re paying way too many taxes these days? A report released on Tuesday by Canadian public policy think-tank the Fraser Institute supports that sentiment. Its Canadian Consumer Tax Index found that the average Canadian family spent 43 per cent of its income on taxes in 2017. It said the total tax bill of the…

Powerful government unions weaken the economy

While the U.S. is curtailing the strength of such unions, Canadian government finances are stretched by the cost of public-sector workers

Powerful government unions weaken the economyAmerican taxpayers and workers won a big victory recently, with the United States Supreme Court ruling 5-4 in Janus versus American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) that government employees not part of a union could not be forced to pay union dues. Previously, government employees in 22 states were forced to pay…

In Greyhound’s wake, government should stay off the bus

When governments run transportation services, more tax dollars make trips than people. Let private business fill the gap

In Greyhound’s wake, government should stay off the busWestern Canadian bus riders have received an early Halloween scare: as of Oct. 31, 2018, Greyhound won’t offer passenger routes west of Ontario. For the company, it means 415 fewer employees and two million fewer passenger rides each year. For bus riders in remote areas, a vital link has been cut. Some advocates want the…
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