Friday, June 11, 2010

you down with H.S.T( yeah you know me)

Guest blogger C on HST and the NDP. I have to admit I don't know a lot about the HST and how it will effect, well, ME.

Will my groceries be more expensive?? Bike parts? Should I be purchasing sharpie pens in bulk??

Anyways, iIcan neither confirm nor deny what C has to say.
"Apparently, informing the public about the nature of the new HST is a “blatantly partisan spin effort.” At least according to NDP MPP Peter Tabuns.

The Ontario government has included a letter describing some of the main items that will now be levied with HST as well as a description of additional personal income tax cuts designed to offset the tax, and signed by Premier Dalton McGuinty, with a Sales Tax Transition Benefit cheque mailed to every qualified individual in the province.

The Ontario NDPs, likely in an attempt to cash in on earlier opposition to the Federal Conservatives emblazoning oversized novelty cheques with their own party logo, are stirring up quite a fuss about the letters. Unfortunately, the HST letters don’t have a Liberal logo on them, so the only partisan message is the signature of the Liberal Premier which, like it or not, needs be on every piece of important correspondence delivered from the government to the people.

I’m not the biggest fan of the HST, I see it as just another portion of my income that’s going to end up in the coffers of a cumbersome Liberal government. However, I’m not completely opposed to it. It’s generated useful revenues in other jurisdictions and let’s not forget that we do live in the most populated province in the greatest country in the world. That’s a privilege that’s going to cost every single Ontarian dearly, and rightly so.

Furthermore, with the concept of conservation finally beginning to catch on, it’s a perfect time to reward those who buy less and conversely, tax those who buy more. On a philosophical level, I truly believe North Americans will never change their consumption habits until they’re forced to. Our culture is built upon working too hard and then rewarding ourselves through meaningless buying. Even if the HST only triggers minor changes in individual spending habits, the overall impact of buying less and using less is better for the individual, society and the planet.

There is some irony in an NDP opposition that gives lawn signs to its supporters saying “Stop the HST”, but won’t commit to stopping it should they be elected into power. It’s also a little contradictory for a party whose entire governing philosophy is built on social spending to flatly reject a consumption tax, without any real justification for doing so. Rather than forcing a new tax on the public and sitting back to reap the benefits, the Liberal government is educating Ontarians about HST and giving us a little scratch to offset the transition. I’m certainly not gonna complain. I already cashed my cheque."


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