Employer/employee coercion on HST vote has no place in a democratic and free society.

” An important public message from your friendly neighbourhood blogger.”

What would you do, if you walked into work on day, after spending the weekend posting Vote Yes to No HST signs… and found this on your desk?

Sample Letter from Employer to Employee

[Insert company logo]

 

May XX, 2011

 

Attn Employees:

 

With the Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) referendum only a few weeks away, I want to talk about the sweeping positive impact the tax has had on our company and our jobs, and how the new changes to the HST ensure that our families will be better off than with the PST-GST double tax.

 

At 10%, the new HST will cost less than the 12% PST-GST. The average B.C. family will now pay $120 less in sales taxes each and every year. As well, children and seniors will receive a one-time $175 cheque to help with their costs until the new 10% HST is in place in a few years.

 

I want you to know that the HST is making our company stronger. It’s protecting the jobs that we have today, and has the potential to spark additional hiring in the future. A recent report conservatively forecasts that British Columbia will gain more than 24,000 new jobs by the end of the decade, something that would not be possible under the previous PST-GST system.  I hope we can be a part of that number.

 

It is important for the future of our company British Columbia sticks with the 10% HST. Turning back the clock to the GST-PST would put our jobs and our families at risk . Bringing back the 12% PST-GST means:

  • $120 more per year in sales tax for our families.
  • Payback $1.6 billion in HST funding to the federal government
  • B.C. businesses would incur an extra $150 million in new fees to administer the PST-GST
  • Hiring 300 PST tax collectors at a cost to taxpayers of $35 million per year

 

Bottom line – the HST is good for our business and the HST is good for B.C.  To learn more on what the HST truly means for you and your families, I recommend you visit hstinbc.ca or hstjobs.ca.

 

I urge you to ask me if you have any questions or concerns about the what the HST means for you.

 

Sincerely,

[insert name]

 

Wow. Imagine how you would feel.

 Imagine if it became known to your employer, perhaps who is a member of the Smart Tax Alliance, that you were volunteering for the Fight HST, or were simply opposed to the tax because you took time to find out the truth? How would you feel going to work everyday if your boss was putting it out there that voting in favour of the HST would help you keep your job?

Sounds like coercion of the worst kind to me, and guess what? This letter was sent to all BC Chamber of Commerce members in the province and is now posted for all to use and share lovingly with their employees.

Here is a copy of the email that was sent around:

From: Neal Wells [mailto:NWells@bcchamber.org]
>> Sent: 14-Jun-11 7:22 PM
>> To: Neal Wells
>> Subject: HST ballots in the mail – important information for your
>> business
>>
>> Dear BC Chamber of Commerce business members,
>> Over the next few weeks British Columbians will be receiving HST
>> referendum
>> ballots in the mail. A “No” vote will keep the HST, and a “Yes” vote
>> will
>> return BC to the PST/GST system.
>>
>> Attached you will find 5 documents for your use which have been supplied
>> by
>> the Smart Tax Alliance (STA), an organization of almost 50 Business
>> organizations including the BC Chamber of Commerce. These documents will
>> enable you to communicate the facts about the HST to your employees,
>> should
>> you chose to do so. It also outlines why the BC Chamber supports
>> maintaining the tax and the recently announced changes that will see the
>> rate drop from 12 percent to 10 percent.
>>
>> The referendum ballot represents a very important decision for BC. The
>> HST
>> is the largest tax policy change in decades, and addresses many of our
>> competitive and economic weaknesses in the province. Specifically, the
>> tax
>> encourages investment and provides the opportunity to spur economic
>> growth
>> and job creation over the medium term, making BC more competitive.
>>
>> Thank you for reviewing these materials and for sharing them with your
>> employees and their families. For more factual information and resources
>> about the HST, please visit the BC Chamber HST page:
>> http://www.bcchamber.org/hst.html, or the STA website:
>> http://hstjobs.ca/.
>> The STA website also allows you to sign up to receive information
>> directly:
>> http://hstjobs.ca/i-support-the-hst/
>> I hope you will support making an informed decision and vote No to Keep
>> the
>> HST.
>>
>> Sincerely,
>> John Winter
>> President & CEO
>> BC Chamber of Commerce
>>
>> D 604 638 8110
>> E jwinter@bcchamber.org<mailto:jwinter@bcchamber.org

 

 

Most people recall the business boycott fellow writer/blogger Norman Farrell and I started last year against those businesses in support of the HST. We received many emails from Chamber businesses who were outraged at the Chambers implied support of its members, because many small businesses were in fact, NOT in support of the HST.

This letter is a “voluntary” suggestion from the Chamber of Commerce, which is a member of the Smart Tax Alliance and has been actively lobbying the government for years to enact the HST. They will do anything to make sure this tax goes ahead, because for the large businesses and corporations in their membership, it is crucial to increasing the bottom line on their profits – which are not being passed onto to you and I.

Even more disturbing, is this email I received from a reader who just recently went through a job interview… and was denied a position she was suited for because of her volunteer work for Fight HST. Her name and identifying particulars have been removed to protect her identity, since she is still seeking employment. But here is the funny thing about democracy – you can’t control it. The people are standing firm in the truth rather than the rhetoric of the Smart Tax Alliance and Mike Jagger, who, for those not in the know, is a friend and supporter of Kevin Falcon during the leadership race. So when you see his smiley face on that HST information package that was sent out, you know why it is on the pages of a Finance Ministry propaganda package.  Who is tracking the number of jobs lost because of the HST?? 

 

Sent: June 15, 2011 3:04 PM
To: Laila Yuile
Subject: My funny job interview

So I went for this job interview today, it was my 2nd time for an accounting office in ( XX city). I had seen at least 4 people and thought things were going ok/good until I met the 5th person which happens to be the owner. Now, I didn’t put this on my resume but I honestly and innocently answered this man’s question. Cause why? Because he asked.

He said, “So I see that you have done some activities, hobbies and you have some interests?” Yes as he mentions what they are on my resume. And I also answered. “I have done some volunteer work for Fight HST for the community that I live in, collecting signatures.” That’s all I said.

Well, no sooner after I had finished my answer, he replied, “Well that’s unfortunate. You are no longer a candidate for this position for this office.” End of story.

 He also mentioned that I had a lack of knowledge about the HST which concerns him. Surprised by his sudden reaction and his comment, I wanted to hear his view. It felt like a debacle which had nothing to do with the job, my qualifications, education and/or skills. A complete 180 degree turn to uneasy and thinking the worst of me. Why? Because of HST????????

He quickly defends himself and his strong political views by giving examples why HST is a good, no wait, GREAT thing for everyone. Of course, some accountants wouldn’t agree and possibly people in his office. That’s just too bad he says. Wasn’t a good strategy on my part telling his office (him) that I’m a part of the Fight HST. There was no fricken strategy, I was being honest in telling him about me and what I had done and getting a good sense of who I was as a person, isn’t that what interviews are about??? All I did was collect signatures in my community and volunteered my time. That’s it. He didn’t care. It didn’t matter I volunteered. His opinion is what counts.

Now that I got a good sense of this owner, not because of this one thing but there were a few other things which I found troubling, I think I’m the lucky one.

And, if they did call, I can vouch that I will turn this position down mainly because of an unnecessary sour turn of views. And to put it simply who wants to deal with an owner who is not supportive of your views, endeavors and growth and will always view you as a HST hater. I can imagine the surmounting amount of sh**y jobs suddenly appearing on your desk that wasn’t part of your job before making it harder, difficult and uneasy.

Just thought I pass this on as my experience of being turned down because I volunteered for Fight HST. How completely insane, stupid and moronic. I wasn’t afraid to let him know that I had volunteered. I never thought Fight HST was a negative thing and I still don’t. Was it stupidity on my part? Should I not have revealed who I volunteered for? I mean, it wasn’t on my resume, I added it on top of what I had done. Should my volunteer time with Fight HST reflect on my ability to do the job?

The question remains why are we not able to voice what we are so proud of being a part of? Whether you’re volunteering, have interests, or hobbies or your active in your life. It’s who we are as a person, tells others what you’re passionate or motivated about personally. How can we be judged by that? It’s what we already do.

PS: My resume now states proudly that I volunteered for Fight HST whether it’s a good thing or not.

Tell me what you think of my experience.

Sincerely,
S.

 
 

91 thoughts on “Employer/employee coercion on HST vote has no place in a democratic and free society.

  1. Laila

    Ridiculous either way, no?

    There are two levels to this coercion.

    Many small businesses have told us they only joined to get better credit card rates. If they feel the Chamber is pushing them to do this, or if the Chamber endorses it, that leaves them in a difficult position.

    For the employee, reading this at work, imagine being a volunteer and fighter of the HST. Imagine the working conditions you might face after this letter if it became known you supported the fight. We all know there are a million reasons to fire people ….. I just hope no one loses their job over this!! !

    Like

  2. Lynn

    I see this as the pro hst supports desperate to influence a no vote.
    My god, are we going back in time and discriminating against individuals because of their beliefs?
    Are we witnessing a Macarthism resurrection?
    I think so.
    Let’s get the word out.

    Like

  3. susan hodges

    Absolutely it is discrimination. Being denied a job for a current prov. referendum is same as denying your democratic right to an opinion that the government needs to hear. (they have to hear to have a referendum). I would report this to the highest levels (after you get a job) – if you have the energy!!! It is important to share. I thought about the same thing for a volunteer thing and just left it off. none of their business. Any and all who experience the same or similar needs to share. The employer should be publicly shamed. If it is good for rioters it is good for propaganda drivers. People are deathly afraid of politics. Yet they practise it daily shamelessly.

    Like

  4. islandcynic

    Why protect the accounting firm? Let their name out there so the anti-HST folks can choose not to frequent that business. If this boss is so sure of how good HST is for them, he really won’t mind being on such a list.

    Really, we need to have an economic boycott of some sort. Organize it to target certain businesses.

    Like

    1. Laila

      BC NDP campaign meeting tonight for Surrey Green Timbers, Bear Creek Pavilion, Bear Creek Park, 13750 88th ave – Registration at 6:15, meeting starts 6: 30. A worker for Sue Hammell attended the rally and passed on this information!

      Like

  5. Very good article, however I find my blood boiling. It reminds me of the last days of Social Credit, and of course the fundraising for the Campbell Libs, where employees and businesses had no choice but to jump right in. Ourtrageous. Anyway the whole exercise is a sham.

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  6. Jack Hackett

    Well now. I would love to know where and these 24,000 new jobs are, that the HST is supposed to produce. A list of the actual jobs that have and are attributed directly to the HST would be most helpful. At least we are aware that the combined PST/GST will create imediatley 300 jobs (PST tax collectors). Surely that must be identified as a positive start!!!

    Like

  7. cherylb

    Mike Jagger would have you believe the HST is responsible for his creating two new jobs. Wow! All this pain for two jobs in a firm with 175 employees! Yup. The HST is great for BC!

    Like

  8. JOhn Weir

    File a complaint against this employer with the Human Rights Tribunal – here’s the BC Human Rights Code citation:

    Discrimination in employment

    13 (1) A person must not

    (a) refuse to employ or refuse to continue to employ a person, or

    (b) discriminate against a person regarding employment or any term or condition of employment

    because of the … political belief… of that person …

    Like

  9. brad s

    I heard similar things all through the Initiative campaign, but could never get it in writing. “A gov’t lawyer told us that it would be a breach of our oath, punishable by law” . “I was told that I’d lose my job if I signed, and that they would know if I did sign” ….even heard a caller comment on that to Joe Easingwood on CFAX, but neither Mr. Easingwood or I were ever able to get it in writing. I don’t doubt it happened, I just could never prove it. This letter is much the same thing, but at least it’s finally in writing. I hope the job applicant does file a complaint!!

    Like

  10. It is unfortunate that the person who was treated this way – would not ‘out’ the employer, considering she has decided to place her Fight HST history on her resume. Once she does so – then we get to see follow the employer through the allegation – and see if the media will pick up on the story.

    I suspect that business realizes that they must bring employees on board to some degree one way or another to fatten the lower numbers in their column. This persons sacrifice would be beneficially in bringing this type of untoward behaviour to stronger public illumination.

    Like

    1. Laila

      Glen, Brad, it was an accounting office in Richmond. That is all I can say without first communicating further with her and letting her know what has gone on here. She has been desperately looking for a job and so is out beating the streets I imagine! I will let everyone know as soon as I hear back!

      Like

  11. The headline ought to read something like HST costs people Jobs. Maybe if it can’t be done as a story in MSM someone could write it up as a letter to the editor and send it around to all the newspapers. As long as there is a verifiable office and person, their names may not have to be mentioned.

    Like

  12. Julie

    This reminds me of , certain party members during the time of WW11. I had three brothers, two brothers-in-law, and a sister in the military, during WW11. Our young Canadian soldiers died, to stop oppression, fascism and dictatorships. To save our country from exactly what is going on now. Our boys were blown to bits, for absolutely nothing. None of the BC Liberals were worth dying for. We have a government, who thieves from their people, and encourages businesses to do the same. They weren’t worth dying for either. None of them are worth the powder to blow them to hell.

    Will the businesses that saved a pile of money, by the HST, give that money to the government, to offset the HST burden on the people? Not on your Nelly. The same, as they don’t hand any savings to the people. Nor are their many jobs created by the HST. On TV they said all the provinces, who had jobs gained. BC didn’t even get an honorable mention. In fact BC is still bleeding jobs. They should have the guts to say, yes, the HST is a scam, to give to businesses. At least that would be the first truth, we BC people have heard, in over ten years of the BC Liberal government.

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  13. Debbie

    I don’t really understand how this is a political issue…the HST system is better for business than the PST system; that is a fact. And I don’t see the problem with an employer sharing with employees the values of the HST. We all either work for a business, or run a business, or purchase products from a business(es) so whatever affects the business also affects us. PST is an embedded tax, which means that it is added to the cost of many items that a business must purchase to use in running it’s business. So, if you are a consumer (as we all are) then you are paying tax on tax on tax. The problem is that too many people do not understand how PST and HST work because they 1) do not deal with these taxes except at as a consumer, 2) do not take the time to read about how the two taxes are different. If I were not an accountant then I would likely not understand these differences either and I may be opposed to the HST simply because it is calculated on a few more items than the PST was.
    What I find really surprising is that a lot of people believe that they are now paying more fore items such as food purchased at the grocery store, cable, hydro, and telephone. The cost of most of these items has not changed; cable, hydro, and telephone all had PST on them before so if fact you are paying the same as before. Most food purchased from a grocery store does not have any tax on it (before HST and after).
    The real problem with HST is a lack of knowledge, but there are some great sites out there with information on why the HST is better than the PST – http://www.hstinbc.ca/ and http://www.taxtips.ca/gst/bchst.htm. Please at least take the time to read more information before making your final decision.

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  14. Curt

    Debbie, Debbie, Debbie. “had PST on them before so if fact you are paying the same as before”

    We are talking about the HST, which is, and will be for the next few years, 12%. Not the old PST (7%).

    I dont’ know about you, but some extra tax is being calculated on my home bills which weren’ there before the HST.

    Sheesh.

    Like

  15. cherylb

    Well Debbie – if you don’t know why this a political issue, you must have been living on the moon for the past year and a half. This issue has been talked to death. Are you a member of the Smart Tax Alliance too? Please go and educate yourself before contributing your two bits to the adults’ conversation.

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  16. Debbie

    Curt – I think you should educate yourself about the PST/GST and the HST before you make such ignorant comments. Previously we paid 5% GST and 7% PST (12% total) on such items as cable, telephone, etc; now we are paying 12% HST…no difference.

    Cherylb – Yes Cheryl, I know it’s been talked to death and ‘no’ I have not been living on the moon. My point is this is not a case of what political party you favour but what system (of tax) is better for society as a whole. Any smart business person knows that the HST is better than the previous system of GST/PST. Perhaps you need to be better educated about this topic before making such comments.

    Laila – yes, I am an accountant and if you speak to most any acountant they will agree that the HST system is better than the previous GST/PST system. Actually, most professional accounting bodies support the HST.

    I guess in all of your cases ‘ignorance is bliss’.

    Like

    1. Laila

      Debbie, you speak as an accountant, and from that point of view, I have no doubt a streamlined tax makes your job easier. But I hear you speak little to nothing, as most pro HST people do, on the real impact of this tax on low income families, single and seniors, as well as the punitive effect it has had as Cheryl and both already pointed out, many sectors.
      FYI, I have a corporate background and I am currently serving as president of my strata, so I am well versed on how many services are now HST applicable that were not taxed to the extent they are now. Our strata, as most have, have had to anticipate increased costs for maintenance, repairs etc because yes, they are more expensive.

      What I find incredibly insulting, is the condescending attitude pro hst people use when airing their points -as if they know more than other people, when really, you are only coming from your angle as Mike did. I have repeatedly acknowledged that the HST is good for some businesses, and why, and yet I have still not heard a pro hst person admit the truth that economists everywhere have, that the HST is still a regressive consumption tax that hits the lower income person harder because they spend more of their income just to survive. Scroll down Debbie, and read my previous points and see if you can reconcile that point of view. For once, just once, I would like to hear a pro-hst person say, ” Yes, we know this tax hurts lower income people and we know why that it , BUT…… ”

      That’s honestly, and that is real. What I am hearing is rhetoric from you as well Debbie. Give me something real to work with based on what I have said. Otherwise, you can apply the ignorance is bliss motto to yourself as well.

      FYi, there are also a lot of bad accountants out there, as we all know. Being an accountant doesn’t make you infallible, right or even ethical.

      Like

  17. Respect guys, always interesting to hear the other side’s thoughts no matter how deluded, we may know, oops think them to be. Bottom line is I think we are noticing things are costing more, so telling us they are less doesn’t make sense. There are not huge numbers of new jobs. Some poor people are not even getting jobs because they don’t agree with their prospective employer on HST. Not fair. The government is making money off of HST. $3 billion or so I was told, they say they would end up in the hole if there was none. So if they get $3 billion by having the HST, seems to me we are paying out $3 billion more than we would without the HST. The money is not growing on trees but coming out of our pockets. If they really need the money so much stop building Freeways for $1.5 billion or so along the South Fraser Freeway and $6 or $7 billion or more for the Highway 1 / Port Mann. Spend what we can afford, maybe $1/ billion for interurban rail, some for transit, interchanges…. then we will not have to have the HST sucking us financially dry.

    Like

  18. cherylb

    Well Debbie – I’m about as educated on this issue as a person can be. I’ve been living this fight for the past 1 and 1/2 years. I have read and absorbed everything there is to read and absorb about this tax. And there are many “smart business people” who do not agree with your statement in the slightest. I know that I would never have made such a naive comment as the one you made when you jumped into this discussion. And you would have known that if you had actually read some of the comments before interjecting.

    Again, please educate yourself completely, both sides of the argument, before you think you can play with the big kids.

    Like

  19. Laila – I will represent you friend for free if she wants. For what its worth I secured the highest settlement in BCHRT history of $120,000 for a fellow a couple of years ago. I am not saying that this is an amount she should expect to win. But its worth the try —————————eh?

    She/You can reach me at robbins.canada@email.com

    Like

  20. Debbie

    Cheryl – okay then, why don’t you educate me on why the old GST/PST system of tax is better than the current HST system. I am open to listening to both side of an arguement; in fact I have worked with both systems of tax so I do know first hand how each works…but I would still like to hear why you favour the previous system.

    I know there may be a lot of smart business people who do not support the HST; however, being a smart business person does not mean that you know everything about every aspect of running a business. Tax in particular is a very complicated subject at times and a lot of people (even smart business people) do not fully understand it. There are also many smart business people, and most accountants, who would tell you that they support the HST.

    Like

  21. Debbie – PST/GST was 12% constituted as PST (7%) and GST (5%). The HST IS 12% – not 10 % – but 12% – the same percentage as the PST/GST combined was previously.

    However, there were many exemptions to the PST particularly on clothing for young people. There was a laundry list of other exemptions which effectively made the PST/GST much – much – much lower than 12%.

    The former PST/GST was much-much-much better for the average consumer than the current HST is. The former PST/GST would be at least as good – with the exemptions as the HST IF – the Government were in a position to reduce to 10% by 2014. However, over a period of 10 years – the former PST/GST of 12% plus all of the exemptions would be better for the average family than the HST at 10%.

    Any HONEST knowledgeable person knows this. Why would the average consumer and particularly the average family take money out of their own pocket and give it to any SMART business person unless that family owned a business?

    Like

  22. Stan Mortensen

    I am always fascinated by the logic used by the pro-HST forces in supporting their positions, I run a small business and yes the HST calculations are simple for accounting purposes but realistically that it only one shoe dropped in the debate. There are and remain a number of issues that need to be debated in proper form, a provincial general election. The cut and paste approach by the current premier just will not work, there are too many unknowns, the chief amongst them is how durable is the commitment to reduce the provincial portion and if the provincial portion is reduced what is to stop the feds from increasing their portion.

    The problem we have seen with tax cuts is similar to the con artists, bait and switch tactics. In the case of governments and their insatiable need for increasing tax dollars, yup I will cut your HST or your Income Tax or whatever tax, but so long as you looking at the right hand, we’ll double up with the left hand that you are not looking at (fees, levies, service charges etc) to make up the difference. The only ones who suffer are those in the middle class who are rapidly being pushed out of existence.

    The issue is one of affordability by the person at the end of the chain. The issue is one level of government giving up its’ ability to adjust tax policy at its’ pleasure. The issue is that there needs to be a broader debate on taxes and how they are levied and on whom. Always understanding that businesses have ways of mitigating the tax burden that the consumer can’t.

    .

    Like

    1. Laila

      Brilliant comment Stan- thank you for wading into the debate with a well thought out contribution!

      This is a huge issue and I will share a comment with you that came across on Facebook, in reference to the debate between Mike and myself :

      From Kat:

      “You’re both right. I own a business now, and the HST is totally great for write offs and accounting and all that stuff. BUT. I have to charge my customers 7% more for services now, and though my service business hasn’t dropped off becaus…e of it, I think it’s hurt retail sales. Since my employees are paid commission, I couldn’t lower the prices to offset the HST because that would be giving them a pay cut and that’s not fair. And as a consumer, I think the HST SUCKS! So, there are definitely business merits, but for my type of business, there are also nearly equal drawbacks. And Laila all of your points are spot on. More accurately, I don’t charge my client 7% more, the government does.”

      That about sums it up. There are many people with both viewpoints. Good as business, sucks as consumer.

      Like

  23. cherylb

    You are the one who said that “any smart business person knows the HST is better than the PST/GST system Debbie. I didn’t. And now “a lot” might not know because tax policy is confusing? Make up your mind. You’re back pedaling.

    You must have parents. Most of us do. And most of them live on a fixed income. Most of us also have kids who are trying to start out with their own lives, hopefully with the same support that we were lucky enough to have when we were starting out. To start with, there are hundreds of things that used to have no provincial sales tax and now cost more. Some of them: basic TV and phone, vitamins, haircuts, safety equipment, concert and sports tickets, energy efficient applicances, bicycles, lawn care, strata fees due to increased maintenance costs, commercial leases, veterinarian bills, home reno bills, funeral supplies and services, etc. etc. Wonder what it will cost extra to re-roof your house? The PST did not apply to most labour, now it does. You say you are an accountant. I assume even your bill is now more expensive than it was a year ago. So tell me, how does this benefit your customers? Even assuming that is it easier for you to calculate the tax, how is it better for your customers to be paying more out of their pocket?

    They first said they weren’t contemplating it so they could get elected. Then, the Lieberals claimed it was “revenue neutral”. Now they admits it raises money and swear that in fact, getting rid of it will result in a huge hole in our economy. So, which is true? What they said first? Or what they are saying now? Apparently it is ok with you for your politicians to be less than honest, either then or now. It’s not ok for me. Maybe it is a better system. We couldn’t possibly know. The “experts” (who often are the ones who completely failed to call the recession accurately), can’t seem to agree on whether it’s good or bad. Whether it stimulates investment, or stifles it. Whether it creates over 100,000 jobs, or only 24,000. You are aware that ten years ago investment in production machinery and equipment was made exempt from the PST? Several other industries have made it very clear that the HST is NOT good for them. Are you discounting them? The Lieberals have not allowed for the discussion to take place. After 100 years of one system, did it not cross their minds to hold the discussion, especially since right up until the 2009 election, their OWN FINANCE MINISTER was saying it was NOT a good tax for BC and it wouldn’t occur on her watch? Are you saying that you are more knowledgable about this issue than the previous Liberal Finance Minister? You think John Winters from the BC Chamber is? Or Kevin Falcon? What has changed since Carole Taylor made that statement in 2009, besides for the amount of debt we owe due to their incompetence?

    I hear that business is claiming that because of the HST, they are able to be more competitive and “could” drop their prices. Really? Has that happened? Can you provide just one example of that? The only example I have is the BC Lieberal government. Even though the price of booze has decreased because of the HST, they have, in fact, hiked it at the liquor store. What was the reason? Oh yeah….

    “The provincial Liquor Distribution Branch is ensuring its revenues won’t decline by increasing its markup on wines and spirits to offset a three-percent reduction in the sales tax, said Gord Hall, the LDB’s corporate policy director. In other words, prices of wine, beer and spirits at provincial liquor stores will remain the same.”

    We all know that isn’t true. In fact, prices have actually increased.

    Finally, the HST is a federal tax, imposed on British Columbians by an act of Parliament. In other words it’s a federal tax law. It was not submitted to the BC legislature for ratification and authorization. It was passed instead, by a Cabinet order- in-council. You know what that is, right? It is a decision made by Cabinet and Cabinet alone. Forgive me for believing that government consists of both the governing party AND the Opposition, and that they are all entitled to make important decisions on behalf of ALL of their constituents; not just the government side. Where’s the accountability there? You would be freaking out right now if the NDP were government and they had the nerve to try and pull something like that, but because it’s the Lieberals, that’s ok with you?

    This agreement also severely limits the ability of BC to set its own tax rates, as we have already seen by the BC Lieberals admission that they had to request permission for the 2% reduction they are proposing. And that is coming off the provincial share of the HST; not the Federal.

    So Debbie – is that enough education for ya, or are you still thinking that you have openly looked at all sides of the argument before deciding whether to support this tax or not?

    Like

  24. Debbie, you simple minded accountant……HST on all vacation property, HST on the purchase price of all businesses, HST on RRSP and mutual fund fees, on vet bills, on dental work, HST on funeral, fishing licenses, hunting licenses, on all labour, …HST on used cars, boats, planes, HST on hockey school, team sports, vitamins, health foods, HST on potato salad, roast chicken, doughnuts, ….HST on all services including accounting, HST TAX on top of Translink parking tax, HST on oil delivery, HST on strata fees(services have gone up, now passed on to tenants)…HST on air travel, train travel, hockey tickets, HST on BASIC TELEPHONE line!!!

    HST fees at ICBC, HST cost BC Ferries $6 million per year,…HST on all tourism related services, HST on gardening service, on back massage, private nursing, HST on day care, HST safety equipment, HST on bicycles, HST on real estate fees, house inspections, golf green fees, HST on memberships, HST on many standard fare grocery items, HST on soy milk, large kids clothing, HST on boat charters, car rentals, HST on labour, HST ….HST on FUNERALS>>WEDDINGS>>>>HST on everything….A man buys Brentwood mall, he`s a rich man, he pays $20 million dollars for the mall…The HST gets added, the HST on his purchase is…$2.4 million dollars, that cost gets passed onto individual shop owners and ultimately to the shoppers.

    And, if it was such an accounting simplification you would see accounting offices closing…And are they?….

    When pigs fly.

    Yes indeed, welcome to the big girl/boy school of HST facts.

    Good Day

    Like

    1. Laila

      Grant my dear! Thank you for providing a fantastic list of HST items for those who are either not aware of everything the average joe might have to pay out, or refuse to admit and acknowledge how far ranging the impact really is!

      They don’t call you the Powell River Persuader for nothing Grant… and I am still smiling writing this, thinking how happy I am that you came to our little rally! Maybe I should come up your way and have another up there? …lol..

      Like

  25. Stan Mortensen

    “What I find incredibly insulting, is the condescending attitude pro hst people use when airing their points -as if they know more than other people…”

    Laila, you actually nailed it very well. I have read comments from many of the “Smart Tax Alliance” folks and have watched their misleading TV ad and listened to their Radio ad. In just about every letter, which I swear to God all seem to be written by the same person there is that talk down to the peasants attitude. If the STA folks want to win the HST vote they may want to humble themselves (good luck with that) and realize that individually they only have one vote each and that regardless of whatever attitudes they portray it is the greater population that will ultimately decide the fate of the HST, for good or ill.

    I think the crux of the problem is that these folks have held sway for so long that quite frankly they have become full of themselves and to be honest many of these lobbyists really do not care one whit about the effects of tax policies on the general population. They are all making their triple digit plus salaries so why would they care.

    Throughout my work life, I have had to deal with folks like this who have the “well I got mine and to hell with everyone else” attitude.

    Like

  26. gordon Schuk

    I am an anti-HST supporter, because it hurts the poor. Christy C. has promised to cut the tax somehere in the wild blue yonder, however knowing the Liberals scams for the last number of years, I would not be the least bit surprised that they would not cout the tax but increase not only the percentage, but increase the number of taxes it would apply to. Don’t know if any of you remember when the Conservatives, under Joe Clark raised the prise of gas from $.20 to 26c Libs (under Truedough) yelled that it was going to bankrupt the farmers etc. J.C. lost the next election, and PT true to his word, rolled it back to 20c per L. but quickly raised it to 54c one of many things that they did to the beleagured tax payer

    Like

  27. I am an anti-HST supporter, because it hurts the poor. Christy C. has promised to cut the tax somehere in the wild blue yonder, however knowing the Liberals scams for the last number of years, I would not be the least bit surprised that they would not cut the tax but increase not only the percentage, but increase the number of taxes it would apply to. Don’t know if any of you remember when the Conservatives, under Joe Clark raised the prise of gas from $.20 to 26c Libs (under Truedough) that it was going to bankrupt the farmers etc. J.C. lost the next election. P.T. then he rolled the gas back to 20c BUT quickly raised the price to 54c in our area. Do I trust a Liberal promise? Definitely not!!

    Like

    1. Laila

      should be up – its not me moderating, I don’t- but the platform has a word limit on comments I think!! Found it in spam, it should be there now!

      Gordon, thank you for your comments and I am really happy to see new people sharing their real thoughts- very empowering! I realised while on my first walkabout through the neighbourhood after my rally, and again, after I read that email of the lady who lost out on her position for volunteering,how many people are feeling bullied into not admitting they don’t want the HST!! Shocking that people are afraid to voice their opinions, so again, I am very happy to see new people commenting here!

      But… I am still disappointed not to have someone from the PRO HST side be honest about how great the impact is on consumers. Very disappointing and perhaps I am being naieve, but I expect more from those who are trying to mold new directions and policies in BC

      Like

  28. cherylb

    This is for you Debbie. Pay attention now…..

    You are the one who said that “any smart business person knows the HST is better than the PST/GST system Debbie. I didn’t. And now “a lot” might not know because tax policy is confusing? Make up your mind. You’re back pedaling.

    You must have parents. Most of us do. And most of them live on a fixed income. Most of us also have kids who are trying to start out with their own lives, hopefully with the same support that we were lucky enough to have when we were starting out. To start with, there are hundreds of things that used to have no provincial sales tax and now cost more. Some of them: basic TV and phone, vitamins, haircuts, safety equipment, concert and sports tickets, energy efficient applicances, bicycles, lawn care, strata fees due to increased maintenance costs, commercial leases, veterinarian bills, home reno bills, funeral supplies and services, etc. etc. Wonder what it will cost extra to re-roof your house? The PST did not apply to most labour, now it does. You say you are an accountant. I assume even your bill is now more expensive than it was a year ago. So tell me, how does this benefit your customers? Even assuming that is it easier for you to calculate the tax, how is it better for your customers to be paying more out of their pocket?

    They first said they weren’t contemplating it so they could get elected. Then, the Lieberals claimed it was “revenue neutral”. Now they admits it raises money and swear that in fact, getting rid of it will result in a huge hole in our economy. So, which is true? What they said first? Or what they are saying now? Apparently it is ok with you for your politicians to be less than honest, either then or now. It’s not ok for me. Maybe it is a better system. We couldn’t possibly know. The “experts” (who often are the ones who completely failed to call the recession accurately), can’t seem to agree on whether it’s good or bad. Whether it stimulates investment, or stifles it. Whether it creates over 100,000 jobs, or only 24,000. You are aware that ten years ago investment in production machinery and equipment was made exempt from the PST? Several other industries have made it very clear that the HST is NOT good for them. Are you discounting them? The Lieberals have not allowed for the discussion to take place. After 100 years of one system, did it not cross their minds to hold the discussion, especially since right up until the 2009 election, their OWN FINANCE MINISTER was saying it was NOT a good tax for BC and it wouldn’t occur on her watch? Are you saying that you are more knowledgable about this issue than the previous Liberal Finance Minister? You think John Winters from the BC Chamber is? Or Kevin Falcon? What has changed since Carole Taylor made that statement in 2009, besides for the amount of debt we owe due to their incompetence?

    Like

  29. cherylb

    I hear that business is claiming that because of the HST, they are able to be more competitive and “could” drop their prices. Really? Has that happened? Can you provide just one example of that? The only example I have is the BC Lieberal government. Even though the price of booze has decreased because of the HST, they have, in fact, hiked it at the liquor store. What was the reason? Oh yeah….

    “The provincial Liquor Distribution Branch is ensuring its revenues won’t decline by increasing its markup on wines and spirits to offset a three-percent reduction in the sales tax, said Gord Hall, the LDB’s corporate policy director. In other words, prices of wine, beer and spirits at provincial liquor stores will remain the same.”

    We all know that isn’t true. In fact, prices have actually increased.

    Finally, the HST is a federal tax, imposed on British Columbians by an act of Parliament. In other words it’s a federal tax law. It was not submitted to the BC legislature for ratification and authorization. It was passed instead, by a Cabinet order- in-council.
    You know what that is, right?
    It is a decision made by Cabinet and Cabinet alone.
    Forgive me for believing that government consists of both the governing party AND the Opposition, and that they are all entitled to make important decisions on behalf of ALL of their constituents; not just the government side. Where’s the accountability there? You would be freaking out right now if the NDP were government and they had the nerve to try and pull something like that, but because it’s the Lieberals, that’s ok with you?

    This agreement also severely limits the ability of BC to set its own tax rates, as we have already seen by the BC Lieberals admission that they had to request permission for the 2% reduction they are proposing. And that is coming off the provincial share of the HST; not the Federal.

    So Debbie – is that enough education for ya, or are you still thinking that you have openly looked at all sides of the argument before deciding whether to support this tax or not?

    Like

  30. Hi Laila…..The Sunshinecoast is the anti-HST capital of BC….As for a rally up here, not needed, but….You definitely need to be taken out of the city, fresh air, fishing, boating, fresh prawns and salmon….

    Boy oh boy, the gossips may start talking…..Laila and Grant….The dynamic duo, plotting BC Liberal mayhem on the high seas……I`ll call you a little later.

    Cheers

    Like

    1. Laila

      Cheryl, I don’t think they cant handle having to consider another view on this topic.

      Liberals – Baffle them with bullshit
      Everyone else= real, honest truth.

      Ah, Grant, I DO need a break! But come on, everyone likes a rally for the fun of it! Fresh prawns, I am salivating… last time I had those on Savary they were so fresh the little bodies were wriggling as I tossed them into wine and garlic butter! Yes, having met you in person, there is certainly a different dynamic going on…lol…

      Like

  31. Cherylb….I think you knocked Debbie out with a one two punch, good work….Accountants, sheesh…….The higher calling of accounting, today`s accountants pinch in numbers into a tax software program and shazzaammo…

    We are all accountants with as much or more skill than ……Debbie the accountant does BC.

    Cheers

    Like

  32. Debbie

    Cheryl – I am here (again not still :)) You make a lot of great arguements against the HST, arguements that I do agree with to a point. I do not have the time or energy for a reply at this moment, but I will get back to you as I really like the debate 🙂
    Anyway, I can see that you are very passionate about this and I can respect that. All that I really want is for people to understand both side, same as you. And while you seem to understand both sides there are a lot of people that do not and that just bothers me (as I am sure you understand).
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts!

    Like

  33. Sandlak

    Interesting debate. As an accountant, I see Debbie’s points and agree with many of them. I also know that the CA profession is encouraging their members with memos very similar to that of the Chamber of Commerce and suspect that the CGAs and CMAs are doing the same.

    The PST is a very convoluted tax with many exemptions that are difficult to interpret. I’ve sat across the table from PST auditors who had no idea how to interpret certain PST regulations. I’m not saying they were bad at their job, but the way that the PST has evolved over time, it is an incredibly complex tax. The HST is much simpler for business to implement (although I would have made it even simpler, but they didn’t ask me). In theory, the HST should lead to lower prices, but as in most economic theory that assumes that all other things remain equal and it also assumes that there is perfect competition. We know both of those things don’t often happen.

    As a business person that works for a small business, I’ve seen jobs created because of the PST savings. We don’t sell products in BC, we have not had to reduce prices and we’ve used the savings to hire more people. If the market demanded that we reduce our prices, we would to remain competitive.

    I believe that the HST is a better tax policy if properly implemented. Obviously most of the people that post to this blog will disagree. However, I am currently undecided and will likely not vote for the HST. The primary reason is political – like many others I believe the province was lied to by Gordon Campbell and Colin Hansen. I don’t believe anything that Christy Clark or Kevin Falcon has to say to me (not that I believe much from non-liberal politicians either, let’s be realistic). If the Liberals truly believed that HST was better tax policy, they should have made it part of their platform and put it to the electorate before the last election rather than ramming it through 3 days afterward.

    Like

  34. @Sandlak…Name your company, how many have you hired…For any material or goods NEEDED TO MAKE PRODUCT FOR RESALE ARE NOT SUBJECT to PST..NOT MANUFACTURING EQUIPMENT OR RAW GOODS.

    And you say you are hoarding the extra profits…Yea sure you are….Let`s see…Average wage in BC..40,000 K…

    In order to pay that one employee on PST savings you would have to buy(per year)..PST taxable items….You would have to buy $1 million dollars worth of goods with PST on them to pay 1 wage…..Cough up Sandlak!

    You are full of it…Give us names, your store, what you WERE paying HST on before…Pony up or SHUT UP!

    Like

  35. cherylb

    @ Debbie – Going back to the original message of this thread. All I really want is for people to understand both sides before making a decision too. But employers giving one-sided “information”, along with veiled threats about the future of the company if their employees Vote YES to extinguish the HST is bullshit. Holding someone’s volunteer work against them and using it as an excuse not to hire them? C’mon… In the letters above, do you see any of the positive arguments that I just made to you? Even one? Not me. I see nothing but threats, intimidation and not quite honest statements. The BC Chamber is doing the same thing, as is the Smart Tax Alliance. Have you seen the STA sign? Says “Keep the HST 10% Vote No to Higher Taxes” Is that honest? Have you noticed how the Lieberal govenrment has stepped back and is letting us all fight it out? Don’t you wonder at all why Christy was so vocal against the HST when she still was a radio commentator and now supports it? Don’t you wonder why Carole Taylor, who is a brilliant woman and whom I quite admire, despite the fact that she is a Liberal, was and remains so against the HST? And don’t you worry when a lapdog like Colin Hansen steadfastedly supported it, to the point he nearly had a nervous breakdown, when 6 months before, was also against it? You need to ask yourself these questions.

    The Lieberal government has actively encouraged the us vs. them atmosphere poisoning our province. They have been less than honest about the HST, every step of the way, which makes me wonder, what the hell is really going on, as it should make you wonder the same.

    Perhaps the HST, down the road, will be a better tax. I’m open to an honest discussion. If large corporations paid their fair share of taxes (they use services too) I’d probably object even less. I do know that I don’t like paying income tax first on everything I make, and then being taxed on top of my already taxed take-home pay on nearly everything I purchase. And because of the sneaky, dishonest way that we have been manipulated into accepting this imposed tax, I will fight it to my last breath. And there are at least 700,000 people in BC who feel, or felt, the same way I do. And that, my dear, is why this is a political issue. The LIeberals created it and now they can deal with the reality.

    I look forward to your response.

    Like

  36. Debbie

    Wow Grant, you sound like one angry individual…it’s too bad that you cannot discuss this issue without name calling and put downs.

    FYI – In order to pay one (new) employee $40,000 from PST savings you would have to purchase about $570,000 of goods (not $1 million) – $1,000,000 x .07 = $70,000; $570,000 x .07 = $39,900 and I didn’t even have to use my fancy tax software program to figure that out!

    Another point – Sandlak never said that he worked for a company that manufactures product. Companies used to have to pay the 7% PST on all sort of items such as computers, fax machines, printers, forklifts; because you did not get input tax credits for the PST paid (as most companies do with the HST) this cost was added to the cost of the item being purchased which increases the costs of the business which increases the cost of the product being sold by the business. The PST was an embedded tax meaning that it was imbedded in the cost of all the products that you purchase on a day to day basis. Think about this: I own Company A (a manufacturing company) and I pay PST on a number of things which gets imbedded into my costs; I sell my product to Company B (a large distributor) who also purchases items for their business that have PST added which gets imbedded into the cost of these same goods; Company B sells to Company C (a small distributor) who also purchases items for their business that have PST on them and this cost gets imbedded into the cost of the goods. Now this one item has had imbedded PST included in it’s cost 3 times! My main point is this – in the end the consumer (and we are all consumers) is paying either the embedded PST (which they cannot see) or the HST (which they can see).

    Also, you should double check your laundry list of items that are charged HST as many of those do not have HST on them – such as dental bills & ICBC (to name just a couple).

    @ Sandlak – you are so right about PST regulations, this was one of the big problems with it, interpretting it! We spent many hours discussing if certain items should or should not have PST on them and even the PST people could not always give a decisive answer.

    Like

  37. workforfun

    And that, my dear, is why this is a political issue. The LIeberals created it and now they can deal with the reality
    —————————————————————————————————————————————————
    An excellent point and very well put – not too many people think like this.

    Thx

    Like

  38. Stan Mortensen

    @Grant G
    You need to re-read Sandlaks comments, I think you missed all of his important points:

    1. His company does not sell goods in BC, presumably they produce for export sale only so there would be no real requirement or need to reduce their pricing so long as they remain competitive. Like my company, they are likely paid in USD which means that since 2004 they have been operating with upwards of 60% few Canadian dollars.
    2. Sandlaks statement about the complexity of the PST regulations is spot on and has been a long standing issue with BC Businesses; governments of various stripes have had the opportunity to clean that mess up and have consistently failed to do so. The problem with tax regimes is that they tend to grow regulations without rhyme or reason, likely through a combination of lawyers, accountants, incompetent or self serving bureaucrats and politicians. Remember in 2001 it was Minister Falcon who was charged with reviewing government regulations with a view to cleaning them up. Hmmm.
    3. He has indicated that while he supports this type of tax, he is voting against the HST for very valid reasons that I am sure we can all agree on.
    4. What needs to happen is yes the HST needs to be trashed as it currently exists, the government of the day, whomever that might be, needs to consult with the community at large with a view of looking at not just the HST/PST applications but all taxes in how they are applied and on whom. John Horgan for the NDP had a great suggestion on this during his leadership campaign.
    We all know that taxes need to be in place to ensure that the services that we expect from government are met. It is often forgotten in debates such as these, that the benefits from a fair taxation system flow not only to us as individuals and families, they also flow to businesses in ensuring we have a healthy, educated, well paid and innovative workforce.

    Like

    1. Laila

      Bang on Stan, and thank you.

      The issue with the HST is far bigger, as you touch on, than simply the tax itself.

      Yes, a regressive, punitive tax it is for most consumers and many businesses – that is not disputable which is why all the Pro-HST people who have commented here to date fail to even go there and address that. That alone, speaks volumes- if you can’t refute the point, stay silent and deflect back to the benefits of business. One does not need to be a strategist to see that.

      The point has been brought up several times that yes, the tax was introduced badly- a complete understatement, voters were outright deceived and lied to not one, but several times. The point has been brought up that Campbell left, took the hit and so we must now look at the merit vs the downside to this tax, without emotion.

      Reality check time again folks.

      Campbell might be gone, but Christy Clark has followed quickly in his footsteps. While she is trying hard to disassociate herself from her past fawning adoration of Campbell, she has lied to voters over the HST already. She stated she would not even talk about reducing the tax before the referendum, because, in her own words, that would seem like bribing the voters.

      And then look what she did, not that long after. Does the right side of her brain even know what the left is doing? Do the two halfs connect, or is she so desperate she doesn’t really care about how that looks when you go back on your own words so recently shared with the press far and wide.

      Hello. We aren’ t that dumb.

      So yes, while Campbell is gone, took the hit and now is going to get a cushy fat appointment somewhere south of the border where all his real pals are anyways, we are left with a political opportunist at the helm who has made no secret among friends, colleagues and pretty much anyone she trusts for ten seconds, that she wants to get to Ottawa. She has wanted nothing else since she was a young lass who dropped out of university ” to answer the call to public service”.

      The HST is good for many big businesses, in particular certain sectors that this government has banked on for years. There is not any dispute about that. But what about everyone else? What about the people who believed the government had their best interests at heart when in fact, the government lied to them? Or do those people, the thousands and thousands of people who dont have a voice or support or business alliances not count?

      I think they do. As do many others.

      I challenge a pro hst person to address the cons of the tax in a professional manner, which has yet to happen on this site. Mike Jagger could not do it, Debbie has not done it, nor anyone else.

      Until then, when someone who benefits greatly from the tax tells me (someone is hurt by the tax) that this is agood thing for BC…. I will certainly remind you of that challenge.

      Like

  39. Bullshit…ICBC are charging HST, new taxes on claims, prove me wrong…HST on dental bills, new tax….PST on a $1 million dollar PST purchase…equals 70,000k…A 40,000 dollar wage cost at least 60,000 dollars to supply…Simple math…No, the PST isn`t complicated,taxation isn`t complicated, a simple accounting program and shazzaam…

    Not since 2001 …There has been NO PST on new equipment bought for the manufacture of goods…FACT..

    BC is A EXPORTER OF RAW RESOURCES PROVINCE….THUS…We BCers have to PAY ALL THAT PST THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN PASSED ON TO FOREIGN CUSTOMERS….Now we pay it all…

    As a consumer we are now paying for your meals, your hockey tickets, your new artwork, all those taxes downloaded on me……Did you ever hear about supply side economics…In order for businesses to be healthy THEY NEED HEALTHY CUSTOMERS…..Stores are closing province wide, you city slickers can`t see the big picture…Jack Mintz stated….In his report to BC and in his initial report to the CD Howe …”The HST will result in job losses for years, wages will be lowered across the board and consumer prices will rise. ….Tough taxation the PST is you say….What`s tough is being broke from taxation while the Government waste $billions….You little minded small business people think you are talking to people who fell off a turnip truck…Taxes are easy, and as for Debbie does BC…Sandlak and you MORTY….You are what we call ….spies whoose goal is too confuse with soft sell bullshit!…..Small business, been there done that…Ever hear of a PST number….And how many fax machines and paper does one buy?

    New accounting/accountant…London Drugs has a computer department full of accountants…And…How come CKNW has been adverting for new recruits for accounting industry….Your numbers should be falling…

    Beware the phonies Laila….Stan Mortonsen…

    Like

  40. Stan Mortensen

    To Debbie
    Read your comments concerning embedded tax, now I am not an expert but would not the PST payable be a cost of doing business, thereby becoming an expense which would then be deducted from your earnings when calculating Federal and Provincial Corporate taxes and thereby reducing those taxes somewhat. That would seem to mitigate the embedding issue.
    So by increasing your retained income with a flow through tax are you not increasing your corporate tax liability.

    Like

  41. Debbie just outed herself by promoting Chris Thompson, a poor struggling economic major at UBC, now he`s taking LAW at UBC, now he starring in the smart tax alliance traveling roadshow…You accountants must have lots of free time on your hands..

    Chris Thompson,, he produced a totally political video slagging Vanderzalm and the public, Thompson has been promoted by the Vancouver Sun, CKNW, Global news, in fact last night Global news told viewers to see their web site for a link to chris thompson`s video….The guy is a political plant, a BC Liberal….And Chris Thompson talks about restaurants and tim Hortons….He doesn`t talk big ticket items…like air travel , funerals, labour..HST NOW GETS PAID BY ICBC CUSTOMERS on their claims, despite what Debbie says, ….HST cost BC Ferries 46million per year….Where are their savings?…Schools and hospitals are paying more….Yet you puny little small businesses are dead with BC Consumers, talk about biting the hand that feeds it….

    Debbie….Show me effing account business that is closing up shop, your bafflegab, with the ease of the HST, the simplification, one easy tax….Name one god damn accounting firm that has laid off employees and fired/laid off staff!….Yea, I thought so….NONE…How come BC has lost 30,000 full time jobs since July 1st/2010 through to today?

    Where are the jobs, lower prices, …..You business people can pay, you had a free ride with minimum wage for years, and training wages….Greedy damn pigs…Go to small town BC, go to border towns….And guess what Debbie, you can cry in your cornflakes when the HST is defeated….LIAR!

    Like

  42. Stan Mortensen

    @ Grant G
    Firstly, in addressing me, my name is Stan, there is no need to be rude, insulting or just plain nasty.
    Secondly, let me be very clear on one thing, I am a “progressive” and I believe in “progressive” values
    Thirdly, my business is in moving HUMANITARIAN AID cargo to third world countries working with charities, aid organizations, churches etc who are all suffering from reduced donations as a result of the increasing amount of dollars being taken out of the economy by the HST. As a result, my business is struggling from so many hits since 2008, we are amazed that we are still in business.
    Fourthy, my business is a 100% GLBT owned business, there are only two firms currently on this entire freakin’ planet that can say that doing this type of work.
    Finally, I am of Scandinavian extraction (Norwegian and Swedish) as such, many of my progressive views are part of my genetic make-up and I am very proud of those views and I am very proud of the work that we do.

    Like

  43. Debbie

    Laila – I thought I had been using my words…perhaps you just don’t get (or don’t want to get) my point.

    Grant – you sounded angrier every time you get on here…and you don’t have all your facts straight…and you are making a lot of assumptions about me and other accountants. Also, I never said that there was PST on manufacturing equipment…read more carefully!

    Cheryl – I can see why it is a political issue for you and many other people. I choose to just look at the HST itself for what it is, I don’t care to listen to what different politicians have to say about it as this would just frustrate me to no end. I actually think that it is one of the good things that Gordon Campbell did for our province before he left (and trust me I was not a big fan of his). I know the government did a poor job of presenting the HST and explaining the HST, I do not agrue that fact. But I truly believe that the HST is good for BC and I support it for that reason alone (not because I believe what a certain politician says). I think this referendum is a big waste of taxpayers money. And I don’t care if Christy Clark is wishy-washy about what she says and does – if the HST is going down to 10% from 12% then I will be happier. I don’t like paying taxes either but we need to cover the costs of our province and country, we have to pay for new roads and bridges, we have to pay for schools for our children, and we have to have money to pay the pensions of our seniors (who are increasing in numbers). Most importantly we need to pay down our deficit.

    Stan – that is a good point and one that has got me thinking! It would really depend on how much a company is paying in PST costs per year and what their tax rate is. Let me do some calculations and get back to you on this.

    Like

    1. Laila

      Challenge remains unaddressed. I ask again, will a pro HST person please refute the regressive nature of this tax that hurts such a large segment of British Columbians? Because this video does not refute it Debbie, and neither have you.

      And Debbie, you may be a CGA, but I am a writer and researcher, and if you actually took time to look at BC’s budget, and the different programs that are leaking thousands of dollars back into the pockets of big offshore businesses, rather than going into our provincial revenues and therefore supporting healthcare and education, you might be more credible.

      If you like, I can offer to you, as I did to Mike Jagger, a list of government credits and corportate handouts that are draining money faster than they are bringing it in. Mike didnt seem interested in hearing about those at all when I explained that these programs, if cut or reduced, would handle any ” gaping hole” left in our budget by removing the HST.

      Funny thing is, Liberals never want to hear how they can run their government better.

      Like

  44. cherylb

    Debbie – how about summarizing the video? I didn’t find it that amusing in the first few minutes (and I find him quite boring – couldn’t sit there for 14 minutes) and Lawrence Salder, Controller of IMFS lost me when he said they lowered prices because of the HST. Here’s a bit about IMFS.

    One of the most important innovations in waterfront development emerged in the early 1980’s when International Marine Floatation Systems Inc. (IMFS) demonstrated that the surface of the water can be transformed into real estate.

    Traditional land-based development concepts fail to address the specific nature of waterfront. At the same time, public demand for access to the waterfront is increasing dramatically. Combined, these factors signal development potential.

    IMFS has the concepts and the technology to transform opportunity into reality. Our platform and marina dock systems are now recognized as the standard for floating properties in the world.

    IMFS is positioned to design and produce waterfront projects throughout the world, either directly, or through license agreement. With our unique vision and proven expertise, our concepts can facilitate the revitalization of existing harbours, which are, after all, the front door to port cities around the globe.

    President Wittenberg founded International Marine Floatation Systems Inc. (IMFS), and it’s predecessor corporation Danbuoy Inc., in 1981 to foster innovative waterfront development and to create opportunity for “higher and better use” of the world’s most valuable real estate, the waterfront.

    This is the only specific example that Chris has given and I fail to see how that argument will convince taxpayers that IMFS’s ability to develop waterfront will actually benefit them.

    Like

  45. Laila…CD Howe has pulled Jack Mintz`s 2008 report on the devastating HST tax from their web site….Perhaps this scholar can provide a little insight to what the HST is..regressive, penalizes families, the poor, ….Professor Murrell
    _____________________________________________________________________________________
    .

    Read the full report: Impact of HST on Ontario and British Columbia households by income Quintile

    Executive Summary

    This paper measures the impact of the new HST tax, implemented on July 1, 2010. by the Ontario and British Columbia governments, on households. The paper focuses on the effects of the tax regime change, from the retail sales tax (RST) to the HST, on the five income quintiles as defined by Statistics Canada. I use consumer spending data from Statistics Canada’s 2008 Family Expenditure Survey and Statistics Canada’s housing investment data (and the 2006 Census) for tax changes in new single-unit, owner-occupied housing. I assume that 60 percent of input tax savings, to firms and non-private agencies, are passed on to consumers. Finally, I use published information from provincial government studies and budgets to measure personal income tax reductions – to calculate net tax changes.

    My results are as follows.

    for both Ontario and British Columbia, the switch to the HST tax (and the accompanying personal income tax relief measures) represent, on average in the longer-run, a net tax increase for households. For British Columbia, the net tax is estimated at around $320; for Ontario the change is around $290 (all dollar amounts are $2008 – the benchmark year used for all data and calculations in this paper);
    in the first year – before the Ontario transition payments expire and before larger savings from input-cost reductions kick in – the net tax disparity between Ontario and British Columbia is quite large. In Ontario the average family sees a gain of about $145 in tax relief; for British Columbia the average family can be expected to pay an extra $480 in taxes;
    the tax rise from the tax regime change is much higher than that suggested in the Government of Ontario’s technical paper, “Ontario’s Tax Plan for Jobs and Growth”. This is because (1) the Government of Ontario amortizes the HST tax increase (for new housing) over many years, reducing the tax increase for ·year 3ft in their study. and (2) the Government of Ontario assumes a high 90 percent pass-through rate for cost savings by businesses, from input-tax write-offs;
    the net per-family tax increase in British Columbia is higher than that for Ontario, given that the Government on British Columbia has granted much less in the way of personal income tax relief. This is true. even though the pure HST tax increase in British Columbia is considerably lower than that for Ontario;
    for both provinces, the pure HST tax increase is regressive: it impacts low-income households far greater than that for higher-income households. But the accompanying personal-income tax cuts are very progressive, such that on balance the net impact is modestly progressive – from the poorest households to upper-middle class families. There is no further progressivity from the upper-middle class to the rich households.
    the change towards an HST tax on consumer services is highly regressive, but the imposition of the HST to tax new construction (new homes over a certain price limit; renovations and additions) is modestly progressive

    Like

  46. Debbie

    Stan – okay I thought about it and while the PST would reduce your taxes somewhat it would only reduce by a percentage of the PST paid. Example if a company made $100 and expenses were $70 before taxes and PST then there are two senarios:

    PST system $100 – $70 = $30-$1 (PST embedded) = $29 x 70% (30% tax) = $20.3 Net Income
    HST system $100 – $70 = $30 x 70% (30% tax) = $21 Net Income.

    So no, this theory does not work.

    Sorry.

    Like

  47. cherylb

    Debbie – you have made it abundantly clear that what you said in the beginning of this discussion was not sincere. You said you really didn’t understand how this is a political issue, so I explained it to you. And now you say you don’t CARE to listen to what the politicians have to say about it. Irregardless of whether you care to, or not, the HST IS a political issue and cannot be looked at in a vacuum.

    Then you said the real problem with the HST was a lack of knowledge. So I and many others here demonstrated that in fact, we are quite knowledgeable about the HST. Then you say that even though we have made it clear what our objections are; you don’t care, because you have already decided it would be good for BC, regardless of the other arguments.

    Then you said you were open to listening to both sides of an arguement. WTF? How’s that? You are all over the map.

    And don’t give me that crap about paying taxes. That is a cop-out. We all pay our taxes, right? We all use the services, right? Then big business should be paying their fair share too. We wouldn’t be in this situation if the Lieberals hadn’t spent the past 10 years cutting corporate taxes, while at the same time screwing up our economy and overspending big time!

    One last thing – you haven’t responded to my earlier comment about Carole Taylor and the Lieberals position on the HST for the entire time they’ve been in power until shortly after the 2009 election, two years ago. They were all against it. Period. It was bad for BC. Period. What has happened since to change their mind and have the HST suddenly become a good tax overnight? You appear to be a fairly intelligent woman. You don’t wonder what the answer to that might be, at all? Seriously? So if your husband said for years he wouldn’t go to the bar because he was afraid he might screw around on you if he got drunk, and then he suddenly started going to the bar, and staying out late at night, you’re saying that it wouldn’t cross your mind to ask him why his position suddenly changed.

    Phew! You’re a more trusting woman than I am…….

    Like

  48. Stan Mortensen

    @Grant G

    I have looked over the 5 comments that I have posted here to see what basis you might have for your cyber-bully attack. Seems to me from my comments that I have been consistently insync with your views. Perchance would you read through my comments and advise me where your issues are.
    1. I am opposed to the HST.
    2. I am opposed to giving control of our tax policies to a more senior level of government.
    3. I am opposed to the current regime in Victoria.
    4. I am opposed to these triple digit earning lobbyists from CFIB, STA, the Fraser Institute etal talking down to the voters of this province that my family has lived in since 1929, knowing full well that most of them do not have that long a history here.
    So tell me Grant which of these points do you disagree with or any of the my other comments on this thread. My partner & I have had to work with bullies & homophobic bullies in an industry that is rife with this type of attitude. So needless to say when I am having a civil discussion on a blog that I respect, I really take exception to an unwarranted attack by someone who has not taken the time to read, comprehend or civily question my positions.

    And no, I do not expect an apology, cyberbullies seldom do.
    Now that I have that off my chest, I can go for coffee and a muffin and pay that damnable tax.

    Like

  49. @Stan…..Enjoy your muffin…Me an internet bully.?…Hardly…..If I lumped you in with Debbie does BC I apologize…

    I read a blurb from one of your earlier comments and lumped you in with the con artists..

    Your cause is just, as is mine……If you read my web site you will find that the fighting I do(we do) is fighting for the weakest members of our society, those without a voice.

    Yes my temper rages with liars and con men spewing lies…..

    If I get carried away it`s because we are living in Germany circa 1940….A Government that is corrupt, with a hidden agenda…The elimination of the middleclass and voices of dissent…Propaganda on such a scale…Can anyone name a BC Government propaganda on this scale in our history, can anyone name another campaign…I can`t …

    Gordon Campbell and other higher up BC Liberals have bulging bank accounts for imposing the HST on consumers…And they can`t give the money back without……Dea__ and revenge.

    We have been sold By Gordon Campbell to foreign entities!

    Good Day

    Like

  50. Stan Mortensen

    Debbie, their minds were changed by a $1.6 Billion bribe to deal with a minor accounting problem and to make the boss look good for misleading the electorate on the real financial situation of the province that we all had a pretty good idea about.
    Combine that with the old concept of hitting em with something like this at the beginning of a mandate and hopefully they won’t remember it when the next election comes round.
    This time, it did not work, as they say timing is everything and the last thing you want to do during a recession is tinker with your tax policy to the detriment of the taxpayers empty pocket books. Especially at a time when you need to have as many people actually working as possible.
    The feds were really smart on this one, especially with the timing, they managed to get the province signed on and for the most part avoid much of the criticism for their part in this fiasco. The government needed to ask themselves 2 questions:
    1. What would Jesus have done? Hmm isn’t there something in the gospels about him tossing folks out of the temple, albeit they were money changers but I suppose we could include tax officials.
    2. What would WAC Bennett have done? Let’s see, he would be smiling, offering them a cup of tea whilst showing them to the door advising them not to let the door hit them on the ass (he would have used a nicer word) on their way out. Then he would have sent them a bill for the tea. No one usurps his ability to deal with provincial taxes.

    Always like to be able slip a little bit of the Bible and some history in even in a tongue in cheek manner.

    Interestingly, the ones who took the real hit federally for this appears to have been the federal liberals who forgot that all Canadian elections are about one thing: bread and butter issues affecting our everyday lives. Had they come out and said something like ” well, we generally do not have a problem with Value Added Taxes, our sense is that the folks in BC have a problem with it and accordingly we are allowing our members to vote on this issue according to their conscience and if defeated in Parliament then the province should come back to us after they have consulted with their constituents” May have saved them a couple of seats. Having high moral and philosophical standards is one thing that does not put bread on the table or make the mortgage or rent payments.

    Like

  51. Stan Mortensen

    @ Grant G
    Many thanks for the apology. It is tough these days to maintain our tempers with the types of political leadership that we have had to endure. I can only think of the leadership we once had in BC and across our country, folks who actually believed in the greatness of our country, folks like Tommy Douglas, E.C. Manning, WAC Bennett, Harold Winch, Joey Smallwood, Diefenbaker. They may have been at odds with each other politically but they all shared that love for the common man and the common good.
    There are times that I can see them all sitting up there looking down and just shaking their heads. They all left such great legacies and all of those legacies are under attack by professional politicos many of whom have never had a real honest job outside of the game of politics. And unfortunately, that is the way the current crops look at it, a game of strategy, division and pampering to specific interest groups (both ethnic and otherwise).
    I truly do not know what the solution is to shake these folks up, maybe we need Rick Mercer to become more ascerbic (not sure how that would be possible,but…) like Jon Stewart and nail their collective butts to the wall.
    One thing I do know is that Warren Buffett was right there is a war between the middle and upper classes going on and it is not restricted solely to the USA but globally. It really is no longer left vs right vs the middle, we are being assaulted along economic lines, the haves, who do not want to sha
    re and those who are struggling just to get by.
    You know, in the work that my partner and I do, we co-ordinate shipments for agencies shipping to places were a triple digit income is measured in pennies not the thousands of dollars that many of these lobbyists earn. The question I have for these lobbyists is when did it become OK for us to reduce our standard of living to the levels only seen in third world countries, silly me, I thought the goal was to bring them up to our standards.

    Anyway, the muffin and coffee went down well. $2.49 plus HST, I am not looking forward to the price increase on that but hey it is a good place to read the G&M.

    Like

  52. Sandlak

    Sorry for missing out on the fun here, I’ve been at work.

    Grant, you are the Russian Babushka doll of commenters. Every post reveals another layer of anger and stupidity. I applaud Stan and Debbie for their patience, but I have none for arguing with dimwits. Some of your points are valid and some of your facts are correct, but you claim to know all when you know only part of the story. But I’m just an ignorant accountant that sits around plugging numbers into a computer program.

    Like

  53. Do tell Sandlak…What $million dollars worth of PST goods did you buy…How many employees did you hire, what product for RESALE are you shipping out?

    So let me get this straight, you bought a $zillion dollars worth of PSTable items, instead of keeping extra profits you spent all the PST rebate money on new employees…Oh you are such a humanitarian..

    You hired extra workers, in order to supply wares overseas, not for extra profit mind you but to increase employees..Hmm..Do tell…

    At least tell this simpleton what goods you purchased that had PST on….And now with the HST you can claim it all back…Forget employees, forget profit…

    Just name the raw goods with PST on them that you used to pay..A real simple question, did you buy widgets, horsedhoes?…Granite, gravel, farmed Salmon…How about wood products for furniture building…

    Do tell Sandlak…What are those $millions in products you bought that had PST on that YOU CAN NOW CLAIM BACK UNDER HST…Do Tell.

    We are waiting with baited breath.

    good Day

    Like

  54. I guess Sandulak doesn`t want to tell us what PST taxable items he bought…How come, trade secret, stumped, confused….What are you selling overseas, ???…Could it be education courses?…Perhaps…

    Let me know please, …..For I will gladly apologize when proven wrong…..Debbie said nothing but obfuscation…Stan and I came to terms…Just you left Sandulak…You bought near a $million dollars worth of something that had PST on it(you claim)…Now with the HST you get all that PST back…

    Don`t be a stranger.

    Good night folks

    Like

  55. jim

    Debbie, “I figure if they changed their minds about the HST then they must have become more informed about it and realized that they were originally wrong.”

    Really? You don’t think it has anything to do with Campbell/Hansen’s budget deficit election lie, and the bribe money from Ottawa to bring the number down a little?

    Of course accountants on the side of business will say HST is wonderful. We get to transfer our tax burden to the consumer. And this means the business will save the tax money, which we have been told would be passed on. That isn’t the case. If the business is saving money, they are not going to say hey look our profit margin grew, let’s give the money away to our employee’s, they are just going to let it pad their profits…

    This is part of a bigger shift, moving the tax system to regressive consumption based taxation, through income tax cuts, and corporate tax cuts, and increased user fees and consumption taxes. Of course the accountants looking out for big business will say that it is the right thing to do. What about low and middle class earners?

    http://www.lindamcquaig.com/TheTroubleWithBillionaires/index.cfm

    Like

  56. There is one good thing about the HST. That is that it only requires one set of calculations / operations for the people charging the tax and remitting it. GST + PST requires two. So the efficiency of the HST is good and I support that efficiency as does the Green Party of Canada. That said however, what I don’t support and from what I understand neither does the Green Party, is that the HST does end up costing taxpayers more. It is not revenue neutral as the government is making lots of revenue from it.

    The BC Liberal “myths” about the HST just keep piling up.

    We don’t have the budget to fight the lies, we need your help. Keep the message going by forwarding this link to all the people you know and ask them to do the same.

    Following is their latest Top Seven – all new and misleading as ever – HST Myths:

    1. The HST is now 10% – False
    The HST is 12% and will not be 10% for three years – if ever. There will be an election before that, and even if the HST were to miraculously drop to 10% – it will still apply to hundreds more goods and services than a 12% PST/GST for a consumer tax increase of $1.6B per year. And who says it won’t go right back up again later?

    2. The HST will lower taxes – False
    This one is hilarious. The HST increases taxes for British Columbians by $2.8 Billion per year. That’s an average annual increase of $500 per person – or $1208 per average family – forever. Finance Minister Falcon says if his side loses he may disregard the result and expand the PST to items previously exempt – and that’s illegal. Do you really trust this guy to cut the rate if he wins?

    3. The HST will save you money – False
    And the tooth fairy is going to leave you a quarter under your pillow too. To get their numbers to show the HST actually “saving” you money they are calculating only “routine purchases” and that 90% of what you pay in HST will be passed back to you in lower prices. Have you seen lower prices?… We didn’t think so.

    4. The HST benefits seniors – False
    Seniors and people on fixed incomes are some of the hardest hit by the HST. A one time rebate of $175 if you vote in favour of their tax in exchange for paying it for the next 10-30 years of your retirement is a deal only a snake oil salesman would offer. Why take $175 when you can vote to cancel the HST and keep all your money? How dumb do they think we are?

    5. The HST benefits families – False
    Next to seniors, working families are hardest hit by the HST because they are among the largest consumers and have dependent children. Bribes of $175 per child when your cost is closer to $400 a year each makes you wonder if they think all of us failed math as badly as they did. And what about a single mom with two kids going to college? She gets nothing while the Premier and Finance Minister who earn big six figure salaries get the rebate. Nice.

    6. Business will pay more so you can pay less – False
    A temporary increase of 2% in corporate taxes will be passed on to consumers with increased prices. Either way you pay the final bill whether it’s in HST or higher prices.

    7. We will owe $1.6 Billion if we cancel the HST – False
    The “Independent Panel” says the HST generated $850 million more than budgeted. Setting aside that is the biggest tax grab in history, it means government already has $850 million to repay Ottawa. BC has only received $1B, and Ottawa collected $300M more in corporate taxes under the HST than under the PST. So it’s a wash. And keeping the HST would cost British Columbians alot more than killing it – over $28 Billion in new taxes in just 10 years.
    Vote YES to extinguish the HST and save your province, your democracy, and your money!

    Like

  57. Sandlak

    Grant, since your last question was somewhat civil, the answer is software. The $2,000 computer that a software developer uses directly in the production of software for resale is exempt from PST. If you purchase software tools to develop software those are taxable under PST. If you buy server farms and other IT infrastructure to support those software developers those are taxable.

    You probably won’t believe it, but some companies spend millions of dollars on IT infrastructure and software development tools. Some of those companies don’t make money because they are investing in future products. If they save hundreds of thousands on PST, they can choose to either a) hire more people, b) buy more equipment, or c) keep the profits.

    I’ve already made it clear I don’t trust this government. I highly doubt their total job creation claims. However, in some cases the HST has created jobs. If I say that my company hired 4-5 people as a result, the naysayers will say “big deal”, or in your case you will accuse me of being a con man who is part of some grand consipracy.

    Others on this blog have pointed out there are many who have negative consequences, and I understand that. From 9 to 5, I think the HST is a good thing. When I take my family out for dinner, not so much. If the government had not lied about HST from the outset, I might be in favour of it. I think you should reread my original post.

    Like

    1. Laila

      For the record, no Pro HST group or individual has risen to the challenge issued above. Not one factual presentation to refute the regressive impact this tax has on consumers at many income levels, nor the punitive impact it is has had on many sectors.
      I would love to hear Mike state : I do see the downsides of this tax,but feel the benefits outweigh any impact felt by consumers…” Now that would be honest, but I think honesty is not what the Smart Tax Alliance is promoting…

      Thanks for coming back Sandlak, I think it’s been apparent why many people stay silent on admitting they see the benefit to business, but also see and feel firsthand the consumer impact. I think those opinions should be encouraged, since the ONGOING deception of the government with regards to this tax speaks to the reliablity of any of their claims.

      The two sides will never come to the middle. The pro hst component here has refused and evaded questions and facts about this regressive tax and tried in vain to spin and weave around it, but it is glaringly apparent. For those PRO hst people to say this is a great tax across the board is an outright lie, which is why that never factually gets addressed.

      Bernadette, thanks for posting this. Was going to this morning as it was in all those emails yesterday, but you’ve saved me from having to do it.

      Stan, clever comment and a must read for your insight, thank you!

      Like

  58. brad s

    While the conversation has morphed a bit, on the original query regarding receiving this in the workplace, I would also point out that by distributing something like this, the Employer has just given permission for political discussion in the office, and the letter itself implies that you may post your own opinions via email/signage. Of course, I wouldn’t recommend that, unless you have a Union to fight for you when the employer tries to discipliine you for “talking/promoting politics”, even though they have given implied permission by their own actions.

    Any of you folks in a union environment may want to speak to your stewards regarding this….could make for an interesting workplace!!

    Like

  59. .

    “It a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive”

    So let me see If I have this straight…..You have NO CANADIAN CUSTOMERS……You at one time had to pay PST on software and server services(business computers and raw products used for creating have no PST)….

    So you bought software, you were…When we had the PST…You were contributing to the Canadian economy, contributing taxes….Now you save money under the HST, you pass on no savings to your VALUED customers because as you say, their not Canadian and there is no competition!…

    So now Joe lunchpail has to pay your taxes!…..Lets say you strike it rich, your software goes big, you go corporate, bigger than microsoft, you corner the Indian Market….You but $billions of dollars worth of software, you make $billions….And Joey Lunchpail has to pay all that PST and HST so you can provide products to overseas customers…

    Well Sandlak…How about every BC citizen incorporates himself/herself/seniors, students, families…Everyone incorporates, …We call ourselves businesses, even when we lose money, everyone writes off all the taxes…Then what….Glad you are contributing to our tax base….Get ready for the death of the HST!

    Like

  60. Sandlak

    Grant, you’re impossible. The people that we hire pay taxes. We pay payroll taxes (EI, CPP). If the company does well and makes a profit, we will pay income taxes. You make it sound like growing an export business that pays well is a bad thing, just because we got a tax break because of the HST. No one in our company lobbied the goverment, we’re not a member of the Smart Tax Alliance. Presumably no one other than Mr. Hansen, Mr. Campbell and a few others knew this was coming.

    You also make it sound easy to become the next Microsoft. If you start a company from scratch that is trying to solve difficult technical problems, you take risk and you will lose money to start. Almost guarateed unless you can luck into contracts that pay you while you do R&D. If we’re smart and lucky and the company becomes bigger than Microsoft I’ll pay a ton of tax and with the 56% that is left, I’ll retire to the Sunshine Coast. I hear it’s nice over there.

    Like

  61. Sandlak

    Laila, to your last post, there is no great tax. I don’t think a tax system that is fair to everyone has been devised since my Egyptian accounting forefathers first designed the double entry accounting system.

    I think an HST system can theoretically be more fair than a PST system if there are exemptions for necessities and credits for low income earners. As it is being implemented, it is clearly regressive and only a very small number of individuals can honestly be better off under this system (those that spend virtually nothing on taxable services but get the rebates).

    Back on the original topic, the prospective employer was clearly wrong. The prospective employee was being honest, but pretty naive as well. Being a volunteer is commendable but not really relevant to the position, and it’s fair to assume an accouting firm would be pro-HST. Don’t offer an employer any more information than necessary.

    My professional association (CA) asked all of its members to circulate a memo similar to the Chamber of Commerce memo (almost word for word). While the HST is good for our business, I agree with Brad’s point that this is political commentary and should not be circulated in the workplace. The memo went directly to the trash folder.

    Like

  62. Lynn

    Wow!89 comments from passionate fans. That must be a record.
    I am so thrilled that people are actively participating in a discussion.
    Both sides have valid points of view, although I admit the pro hst is merely using propaganda.
    I always thought that in a democratic society all must carry the burden based on one’s level of strength.
    A sort of sliding scale if you will.
    Pay what you can afford.
    The HST is touted as a simplified accounting method for business. It is not a starting point for the greater good, period.
    I am always amazed at how a business owner (legitimate or not) cries foul when it is expected to pay it’s fair share of taxes. A business owner (legitimate or not) cries foul over individual welfare handouts(I believe welfare corporate or not is a hand up-NOT A WAY OF LIFE) but is quite willing to elbow competitors out of the way to be first in line to grab corporate welfare handouts or bail outs.
    I’m thinking that if the government took care in fiscal responsibility we the citizens of this great land would not have to bend over to pay more in taxes.
    Business owners (legitimate or not) should take a more long term approach to this hst.
    They should ask themselves one simple question.

    How will this 2 billion dollar tax shift to MY CUSTOMERS affect their ability to buy MY PRODUCTS?

    The days of easy credit is gone which is how most people lived because their wages have not kept pace for over 20 years.
    So my answer is, your customers won’t be buying much of anything now.
    Debbie does BC will be out of a job, and Stan will find it increasingly difficult to source donations.
    Grant will be able to relax, regenerate knowing he was right all along, and
    Laila will be hailed a hero.

    Like

    1. Laila

      Ahh, I love your comments Lynn, you always crack me up : )
      However,it won’t be me that is hailed a hero, but all the people who fight and have fought so hard to stand up against this lying, deceptive government, and those who were complicit by silence or acceptance.

      I arrived at school one day to pick up my son, and as I entered the classroom, his teacher was speaking to three of his classmates lined up beside her desk. Two of those children actively bullied my son, made him feel bad and then ran off to play while making a point that he was not allowed to join them. One child simply stood there while this happened, said nothing and then ran away with the other two when it was done.

      The teacher was explaining to all the kids why what had happened was bully behavior and that it would be punished strongly. She then told the other child that by standing by and doing nothing while the other kids were actively bullying, he was just as guilty because that had been his opportunity to say no, this was wrong. She told him that doing nothing made him part of the bully group and he would be punished as well.

      It was the most brilliant explanation of being complicit to wrongdoing given to 6 year olds I have ever seen, the point being all those who stand by and do nothing but bitch while the province goes down the drain are just as bad as those in government who are doing the destruction. Each of us can do something, even if it is writing a letter to the editor of your local paper, spreading the stories that need attention via email, attending and supporting rallys… people think they can’t make a difference, but they can. It starts with something small.

      ” “Never give in, never give in, never; never; never; never – in nothing, great or small, large or petty – never give in except to convictions of honor and good sense”.

      Never give in. Never stand by and watch,do something.

      Like

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