ss_blog_claim=8dcabb3175f064b32823a45ed345083b Majik's Thoughts: Green Shift or Money Shift?


Green Shift or Money Shift?

The Green Shift it a comparable plan to meet our commitment to the Kyoto Protocols or just another tax grab? With fuel prices soaring regardless of the actual trading price of a barrel of crude would imposing a tax on polluters to force them to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions actually be beneficial to the average Canadian? I spent a few moments looking over the "Green Shift Plan" and how it will put money back in your pocket to pay the higher prices it will create. The theory behind the plan is to force industry to reduce their emissions by taxing them for the amount of pollution they spew into the environment; I'm glad politicians are keeping the environment in mind but at what cost to the Canadian economy?

Stephane Dion's "Green Shift Plan" on the surface sounds and looks a lot like a tax grab. Something I'm sure a lot of Canadians are familiar with...Goods & Services Tax (GST/HST) for example. But after I saw one of the Liberal ads promoting the "Green Shift Plan" and not attacking other candidates I started thinking about what that would do to our manufacturing sector. Increasing the cost to run a manufacturing plant in Canada could be disastrous. How many jobs have gone south of the border thanks to the stronger dollar increasing operational costs to businesses?

I've been watching a lot of Canadian politics this past week and I have had a chance to delve into what the candidates are proposing. In terms of the environment I am still looking for the best proposal. I have seen very little information on the New Democrats plan to reduce pollution and even less from the Conservative Party. As for the Green Party's take on pollution I am still in the dark on that one; the media coverage of the Green party has been overshadowed by the larger party's plans.

As for my opinion, the "Green Shift Plan" that Dion is proposing is a big thumbs down. The cost of manufacturing in Canada is already too high; why would big business go for a plan that costs the organization more money just to reduce pollution and put more money in the pockets of Canadians to offset their price increases? I do not think this plan would be beneficial to Canadians because cutting income taxes to offset the immediate price increases across the board caused by taxing major polluters; who will just in turn force the cost on to you. What do you think Canada?

Image Source: Official Liberal Party Photo


Brad K. said...

Well, here in the Lower 48, I observed that you cannot tax corporations. They don't pay taxes - they collect taxes.

Remember NAFTA - North American Free Trade Agreement? Forged to lower cost for American consumers by pushing jobs to lower-cost Canada and Mexican work forces?

Tax companies, and you make those transient employers look for cheaper shores. It isn't likely you will push many jobs (Ford vehicle assembly comes to mind) back to the US, but there are other venues.

Looking at what happened to Oil this year, globally, I have even more criticism of the concept of the Kyoto Protocols. The purpose of the Kyoto agreement seems to be to clean up emissions in rich countries, to allow developing countries to smog away. What we saw in crude oil seems to indicate that a major shift is underway, that 'developed' countries are using less oil, while developing countries (China? Malaysia?) are expanding use geometrically. Which means that what the US and Canada do about reducing emissions, while allowing other nations to emit unchecked, cannot improve the global climate by any significant measure. Reducing greenhouse gases either makes sense for all, or it just doesn't make sense at the national and global level. I don't have any reservations - reducing greenhouse and pollution emissions is critical, at the individual and local level. That is the place where worthwhile change is going to happen.

Canada continues to be very good and generous to the United States. The Canadians that I have met that immigrated to the US have uniformly been wonderful people, and amazingly productive. But I cannot help but hope that you continue to be wonderful people, and not make your country uncomfortable for your best and brightest. I want my grandkids, too, to be impressed with Canadian ethics and workmanship!

Majik2903 said...

Brad, thanks for your valuable insight. The Ford vehicle assembly plant was in danger of closing down not that long ago. If it was not for a cash injection by the government the plant would have been closed and many workers would be out of a job.

Recently the success of the Canadian dollar has been a little bit of a gremlin to the stability of the manufacturing sector. The company I work for decided shortly after the dollar peaked to close one of their manufacturing sites and put quite a few people out of work. Shortly after that there was news of more plants closing down, such as the recent closure of the John Deere plant.

I don't think the work ethics of the Canadian people will change during this election. The void left in the wake of US companies moving back to the US will have to be filled by Canadian companies for our economy to succeed. I just do not see the Liberal's plan working towards a larger and stronger Canadian economy.

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