Eight billion dollars is not enough

Posted 11 December 2010 by in Reader's

That’s the message that Bay Street delivered to the McGuinty Liberals in Queens Park; eight billion dollars the amount that the captains of Bay Street paid themselves in bonuses last year for having the wisdom to accept the largest corporate bailout in Canadian history. The seventy five billion dollar bank bailout by Canadian taxpayers, that on a per capita basis matches the U.S bank bailout. Having heard the message the McGuinty Liberals, supported by the Hudack Conservatives have turned its government’s rightful  priorities on its head, abandoned fiscal responsibility and moral obligations to throw  a further $2 .4 billion of no strings attached corporate tax cuts at their feet. This untargeted tax windfall will cost each and every Ontario household over $500/yr in lost services and increased costs.

Line ups will lengthen for hospital procedures, children struggling with mental health issues will be left to fend for themselves, child homelessness once unthinkable will continue to grow, aging families struggling with adult children with developmental disabilities will be left to flounder as services continue to be slashed, our young people will be left with ever growing debt as they gamble that a higher education will provide a job with a decent wage. No service will be exempt from this degradation. 

When fully implemented these tax cuts to profitable corporations along with the tens of billions of dollars of additional federal tax cuts will result in Canada having the second lowest corporate tax rate of the G 20, only Mexico will have a lower tax rate. In fact at 11% income tax rate these huge corporations will be paying far less of their income in taxes than working Ontarians. Working Ontario families pay on average over three times as much.  Let’s have some tax fairness here!

Politicians agree with Corporations when Corporations  say they need these tax breaks to create jobs and get the economy going. But the numbers prove them wrong. After 10 years of fiscally irresponsible corporate tax cuts in Ontario the rate of corporate investment here in the Ontario economy has actually gone down. Can anyone say Hersheys? Look around where are the promised good jobs. Ontario’s families have paid and paid, and are now being told to pay again. They have paid with increased tuition costs, paid with decreased access to Health care, paid with school closings, tainted meat, unsafe water, and an unstable low paid job market, dominated by private manpower agencies. Enough!  A recent Angus Reid poll confirms that 81% of Ontarians support corporations paying their fair share of taxes; because eight billion dollars in bonuses is obscene.

Dave Lundy

Regional Vice President OPSEU

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