Tax Law, Loopholes and Greedy Lawyers!

The Toronto Star is reporting that: "the rich, with annual incomes of more than $265,000, saw their tax rate decline dramatically between 1990 and 2005 by nearly 4 percentage points to 30.5 per cent.

"In contrast, those in the bottom 10 per cent of income earners – with earnings of $13,500 or less – watched their rate rise by 5 percentage points to 30.7 per cent.

"The study, Eroding Tax Fairness: Tax Incidence in Canada 1990 to 2005, says that over the same period most Canadians saw their tax rate fall by about 2 percentage points.

"But middle-income families still pay about 6 percentage points more in total taxes than a family in the top 1 per cent."

Did you catch that? The middle class pay on average SIX percentage points more than the rich.

The idea of a flat tax is appealing in many ways. Of course in practice we should probably have a few conditions and exemptions in our tax structure, but what we have now is far too complex and the lawyers of the ultra-rich seem to understand it better than Revenue Canada and far better than the lawmakers who have created it. I think it would make a lot of sense to eliminate all the exemptions, and then reinstitute a few that are the most important

Luckily things aren't as bad in Canada as they are in the US. In America the beautifyl there are hunting tourism companies which run "museums" to which the people on there trips give the various heads and tusks and such that they come home with as donations in kind at wildly inflated values and then write off the cost of the trip as a charitable donation on their taxes! BLAUW! The US government is paying rich people to shoot at wild animals!


Blogger sk said...

The problem with a flat (or nearly flat) tax is that it's way more unfair to lower income people. A person earning $30K/year and a person earning $300K/year could both pay 30% tax, but that would have a much greater impact on the lower-income person.

The other side of it is that a lot of tax breaks are used as incentives to encourage certain kinds of behaviour, the most notable being charitable donations and RRSP contributions. If I make $100K/year, and I'm taxed at 50%, but I set aside $30,000 to give to charity and to contribute to my RRSP, then I only get taxed on the remaining $70,000, so my effecive tax rate is now 35%. So rich people, because they have more disposable income, have more opportunities to take advantage of tax breaks than poor people do. But if you didn't have those tax breaks than fewer people would give to charity or save for retirement.

1:10 p.m.  

Post a Comment

<< Home