Tuesday, February 21, 2012

First-Past-The-Post Analysis Of The Snook's First (not)Budget...


It reads like a scatterbrained teenager's Twitter Feed.

Disjointed, disconnected, and hop-scotching all over the place.

Which can be charming when the topics are chipotle, gym-socks, and 'what-if' stories about all those kids that auditioned, but didn't quite get picked, to be on Glee.

But, when it comes to spending our money in ways that actually matter....

Not so much.

All of which is just another way of saying that this is a budget that is not actually designed to do anything significant in any substantial way.

Other than....

Of course....

To go after focus-tested 'boutique' segments of the market....errrr....citizenry that the fine folks now runnin' the Snook think that they can get down the road (along with throwing bones to the cronies, but that was a given).

And who already road-tested this nonsensical, anti-democratic budget segmentation strate(r)gy?


Who's actually doin' runnin' of all things Snookilicious these days anyway?

Oh, ya....The fine folks from Steve-O's 'Land-O-Lakes And Shovel-Ready Gazebos'.


But here's the real thing* that should have British Columbians who want to see their tax dollars actually do something real like, say, deal substantively with child poverty or long-term care for seniors....

Which is that, except for the marketing angle most of these boutique give-ways for a select-few more often than not do not work for crap.

In other words, they are purely political rather than practical.

And they cost us ALL money.

To wit:

...The (Steve-O) Children’s Fitness Tax Credit, for example, allows parents to claim up to $500 for their child’s participation in such things as hockey, dance or kung fu. Now everyone enjoys saving money, but if encouraging children to play sports is deserving of a tax expenditure, then it should target lower-income families who might struggle to pay these fees. This is not the case, however. Two-thirds of all claims and 70 percent of the dollar value of this tax cut go to tax filers with incomes above $50,000. This is a tax expenditure directed mainly at the middle class.

And according to a University of Alberta survey of 1,000 parents, the fitness credit is also irrelevant to decisions to enroll children in youth sport. Well-off families enroll their children regardless, and low-income families are not able to access the credit because they can’t afford to pay the fees in the first place. The Children’s Fitness Tax Credit thus fails in its stated objective of encouraging more children to play organized sports.

Despite its ineffectiveness, however, the children’s fitness credit figures prominently in federal ads boasting of Ottawa’s tax cuts for families. This is because the purpose of Harper’s boutique tax cuts is political, rather than practical. By offering targeted tax expenditures to select groups of Canadians – transit riders, families with children, workers with tools etc − the Conservatives hope to win their favour come election time...


*Besides the fact that the HST is still alive, kicking and sucking more money, on a percentage per total dollars earned basis, out of the pockets o' the poor than ever.



Anonymous said...

No tax credit is ever given that is not first vetted by the ruling elites plain and simple. That is what government by our betters is all about. We can not have the great unwashed benefit from 'public' funds can we? How else to explain obscene raises, justified of course, by the elites for the executive branch but not for the peons. Example. Hospital managers versus actuals medical professionals or government appointees versus clerks. How is a PAB person for the (not)premier worth $200,000 (plus a gov't credit card) and an office clerk only worth 25/30,000 if they are lucky to have a job? Elites party in power, you bet.


PS Elites toss in a 'wringer' for the peons that hits the media as some sort of boondoggle. Can't have the peons receiving gift cards etc. to coffee shops can we now? But bonuses are AOK for the chosen few. Right? Right? Amazing

Kim said...

This budget did have one other significant purpose...