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UCP Tax Cut Hits the Target but Misses the Mark

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7 minute read

Opinion by Cory G. Litzenberger

Well for fear of being lynched, let me talk about how I think the UCP’s Job Creation Tax Cut may be (partially) incorrect.

While I applaud politicians for laying out their plans in advance of an election, my fear is that the plan is too slow in implementation and cuts too far.

I think a tax cut needs to be moderate and quick – not slow and deep.

Here are my thoughts for various tax changes we need to do in Alberta:

General Corporate Income Tax Rate:

Instead of cutting by 1% per year over 4 years, bring it back by 2% to 10% from 12% in the first year and keep it there.

By delaying the cut as the UCP currently proposes, it could reduce the impact it will have on the economy as the change to the bottom line will not be impacted enough for a corporation to make larger investment until year two or three of the plan.

Quicker action by government will result in quicker action by business, resulting in quicker action in the economy and job creation.

10% also still makes us the lowest jurisdiction in Canada.

Personal Income Tax change to 3 brackets:

– 8% for first $50k
– 10% for the next $100k
– 12% for over $150k

This reduction from 10% on the first $50,000 saves roughly $600 in personal income tax (after factoring in the basic personal tax credit) for every individual making more than $50,000 a year.

It also saves 2% for those making under $50,000 currently.

This is an important cut in order to reward people that call Alberta home, as you will see below.

A rich person paying 12% in Alberta on their personal income is better than them paying 0% because they live somewhere else.

Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) 5%

Yes, I think we need to remove the inflationary and regressive carbon tax as it is way too high of a burden and causes a ripple effect in inflationary pricing how it was implemented.

However, I suggest we implement a 5% HST (which is a flow-through for businesses and does not have the same impact on pricing).

Now, hear me out before you break out the yellow vest!

Currently, anyone visiting our province as either a tourist or a temporary worker from another province are using our infrastructure like roads, water, and yes, even hospital emergency rooms.

When these non-Alberta residents file their personal tax returns, they file it based on their home province of residence as of December 31. Since most of them don’t have a permanent residence in Alberta, this results is them paying income taxes to other provinces, while using our infrastructure for free.

Other provincial residents not paying any taxes in Alberta while here unfairly puts the cost on all of us that live here.

If we implemented an HST similar to the GST program, low income households would still receive credit back (just like GST credit) to offset most (if not all) of any HST they pay.

The $600 in income tax savings we mentioned above for everyone else, is equivalent to $12,000 of taxable supplies consumed ($24,000 in a double income household where they each make over $50,000 of income).

Don’t forget that basic grocery and shelter do not have sales taxes, and if Andrew Scheer gets elected, neither will basic home heating.(https://twitter.com/andrewscheer/status/854364648388182016)

This income tax reduction of $600 to $1,200 would offset much of the sales tax you would pay, but would now start to charge non-Alberta resident visitors and workers.

The reason for an HST instead of a PST is that currently, an HST is required to be charged by all GST registrants across Canada. If you are a GST registrant, you are automatically an HST registrant.

For example, in my office in Red Deer, I have to charge my Ontario customers HST and send it in to the government even though my business is in Alberta.

An HST could reduce the potential for tax leakage out of our province by funneling it back to Alberta because of other retailers in other provinces requiring to charge it on things purchased outside of, or shipped to, Alberta.

Results

– a competitive corporate tax rate to attract investment and do it quicker than the original UCP plan;
– low personal income tax to attract wealthy individuals (and their tax residency) back to Alberta to make it their place of residence, again, quickly;
– removal of the inflationary carbon tax;
– insertion of a relatively low cost HST so that we can get back some of that transfer payment money from the residents of other provinces.

In Summary

– Reduce Corporate moderately and quickly.
– Reduce Individual moderately and quickly.
– Remove Carbon tax.
– Implement an HST.

I know that the slight mention of a sales tax in Alberta makes the hair on the back of your neck stand straight up, and for many conservative politicians, they would resign before suggesting it. However, even as a fiscal-conservative tax accountant like myself, I believe that if it is implemented properly with tax reductions elsewhere, it can add to the bottom line for the province.

I also think it can do so without being a burden to those that live here by taxing those that don’t.
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Cory G. Litzenberger, CPA, CMA, CFP, C.Mgr is the President & Founder of CGL Strategic Business & Tax Advisors; you can find out more about Cory’s biography at http://www.CGLtax.ca/Litzenberger-Cory.html

CEO | Director CGL Tax Professional Corporation With the Income Tax Act always by his side on his smart-phone, Cory has taken tax-nerd to a whole other level. His background in strategic planning, tax-efficient corporate reorganizations, business management, and financial planning bring a well-rounded approach to assist private corporations and their owners increase their wealth through the strategies that work best for them. An entrepreneur himself, Cory started CGL with the idea that he wanted to help clients adapt to the ever-changing tax and economic environment and increase their wealth through optimizing the use of tax legislation coupled with strategic business planning and financial analysis. His relaxed blue-collar approach in a traditionally white-collar industry can raise a few eyebrows, but in his own words: “People don’t pay me for my looks. My modeling career ended at birth.” More info: https://CGLtax.ca/Litzenberger-Cory.html

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Bruce Dowbiggin

The Buck Stops Nowhere: Biden / Trudeau & The Accountability Gap

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It’s unlikely Donald Trump will have time or energy for a post-presidential TV encore. But were he to do so at the age of 85 he might call it You’re Not Fired! In this take on his Apprentice franchise, Trump brings on governments officials and employees who’ve never been fired despair egregious mistakes, many costing lives.

They compete to see which one made the most gargantuan mistake without ever taking responsibility. Bonus points are awarded for players who can say things like  “The buck stops here” with the most cloying insincerity as they keep their job. At the end of the episode Trump declares to the winner, “You get to keep your job forever. Better yet, we are giving you a raise.”

It’ll be a smash hit. Certainly he can talk from firsthand experience about government service being the gift that keeps on giving. To its employees and contractors. This past weekend, for instance, a complete cock-up by the Secret Service nearly cost Trump his life in front of a worldwide TV audience. As snipers tried desperately to put down a shooter, Secret Service folks heroically draped themselves over the president’s body. (At least those tall enough to shield Trump from incoming fire.)

The term heroically is key here. While the sunglasses/ walkie-talkie dudes risked their lives in service of the president, their superiors safely back in a DC office were cravenly insisting that they’d do better next time. In an NBC interview, Biden appointee Kim Cheatle claimed the mantle of “the buck stops here.” She promised transparency in finding out why her department had failed so many basic tasks of the raid to almost getting Trump’s head blown off.

What she didn’t do was resign in shame for almost getting the former and likely future POTUS killed. Nor was she asked to resign by her boss at Homeland Security, Antonio Mayorcas. Ditto the Big Boss, Joe Biden. Even when DEI appointee and Jill Biden chum Cheatle tried out a shameless meme about the sniper’s rooftop being unsafe (too severe a slope), no one asked for the keys to her office.

She held tight to her pension even when it was revealed her squad knew the shooter was around hours before the shots that wounded Trump and killed at least one other. That Trump was allowed to take the stage when the sniper’s parents were desperately calling police to find him. That her claim of local police screwing up was debunked. That the crew was undermanned while a more experienced crew worked a Jill Biden function.

Look, this is not to conduct a review of the protocols flubbed and the roofs abandoned. This is about accountability. To say that there is no glory without honour. And from Biden on down, honour has been MIA throughout the years of affirmative hiring and official bungling. They claim glory, but it’s a shattered chalice.

As just one example, DHS head Mayorcas still gets a seat at Joe’s cabinet table despite the total breakdown of border security. So does Kamala Harris, who was named “czar” for border security. Transport secretary Pete Buttiegieg has overseen fatal bridge collapses, train derailments and transit shutdowns without connecting it to his administration of the department.

The same absence of responsibility has ruled in the decade of Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government in Canada. While his father earned (and then wasted) some honour by facing down rock-throwing separatists in 1968, Justin has been Brave Sir Robin, high-tailing it to the rear at the first sign he might be asked to show some stones.

While his media toadies downplayed Ol’ Yellow Stain at the time of the Truckers Convoy, most now acknowledge that had he emerged from under his desk at the Rideau Cottage in the early days to confront the protesters the disaster might have been averted. Instead, Skippy sent in the Ottawa Police and the Mounties to do his job, thereby converting a temporary problem into a historic assault on civil rights and the dignity of his office.

Whenever the coast was clear, Trudeau has predictably acted like a schoolyard bully to give himself gravitas. In addition to the Convoy, there was his draconian vaccine assault on the unconvinced, the cemetery pantomime leading to calling his nation genocidal at the UN, the imposition of the Carbon Tax and the honouring of a former Nazi in Parliament to silence his Ukraine critics. To impress his UN, EU and WEF pals he’s dissed Donald Trump at a distance, something that will now haunt him after November.

His cabinet and party quickly learned that they’d never be canned if they polished the PM’s apple. Most recently came the news that a cabinet minister had ordered the military to prioritize his fellow Sikhs in the frantic retreat from Afghanistan. Using the armed forces to protect your kin? Trudeau gave Harjit Singh Sajjat a pass because Harjit thinks (publicly at least) that the Boss is swell.

The Chinese cutouts in his caucus are likewise exempt from accountability, because Justin wants to be loved in Beijing. Why not? When he’s been repeatedly nailed on ethics violations or self-dealing he’s just gone la-la-la-la-la-la and moved on to new catastrophes. Or had a former Governor General whitewash his devious dealings.

In fact, the only way to get in trouble with Trudeau is to DO your job properly. Justice minister Jodi Wilson Raybould, a signature appointee as a woman and native, was canned by Trudeau for insisting the RCMP get to the bottom of a scandal from Quebec-based SNC Lavalin. Bill Morneau was edged out, because his view of a functioning economy didn’t include the top-down imposition of fantasist climate and gender diktats.

Both Biden and Trudeau drone on about restoring people’s faith in government without ever asking whether there are the problem. When your heart is pure, they say, your mission is noble. Now shut up.

Except Biden and later Trudeau are about to find out that their public is in no mood to shut up anymore.

Bruce Dowbiggin @dowbboy is the editor of Not The Public Broadcaster  A two-time winner of the Gemini Award as Canada’s top television sports broadcaster, he’s a regular contributor to Sirius XM Canada Talks Ch. 167. His new book Deal With It: The Trades That Stunned The NHL And Changed hockey is now available on Amazon. Inexact Science: The Six Most Compelling Draft Years In NHL History, his previous book with his son Evan, was voted the seventh-best professional hockey book of all time by bookauthority.org . His 2004 book Money Players was voted sixth best on the same list, and is available via brucedowbigginbooks.ca.

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CBDC Central Bank Digital Currency

WEF report: Digital ID has become a standard feature for everyday life in Pakistan

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From LifeSiteNews

By Tim Hinchliffe

A WEF report, co-authored by the U.N. and World Bank, states that digital public infrastructure ‘is transforming lives in Pakistan,’ ushering in a need for digital ID such that adults in Pakistan cannot lead normal lives without it.

Digital identity sits at the heart of Pakistan’s Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI) transformation and is now a standard feature in every adult’s life, according to the WEF Agenda.

Published on the World Economic Forum (WEF) Agenda blog and co-written by representatives from the World Bank and the United Nations’ Better Than Cash Alliance, the story “Digital public infrastructure is transforming lives in Pakistan. Here’s how” highlights how adults in Pakistan cannot lead a normal life without having a digital identity, which is a key component of DPI.

 

“At the heart of Pakistan’s digital transformation is the National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA), established to overhaul the country’s identity systems,” the authors write, adding:

This was a foundational change, positioning Pakistan among a select group of nations equipped to manage comprehensive digital identities for over 240 million citizens.

The NADRA-issued Computerized National Identity Card (CNIC) is now a standard feature in every adult Pakistani’s life, facilitating a range of routine tasks such as opening bank accounts, purchasing airline tickets, acquiring driver’s licenses, and qualifying for social protection, thereby ensuring seamless identity authentication for every citizen.

Digital Public Infrastructure is a civic technology stack consisting of three components:

  • Digital Identity,
  • Fast Digital Payment Systems (e.g. programmable Central Bank Digital Currencies [CBDCs]),
  • Data Exchanges Between Public and Private Entities.

Now, “Pakistan is set to launch several ambitious DPI initiatives, including expanding the RAAST payment system, implementing a nationwide digital health records system, and launching a blockchain-based land registry,” according to the WEF Agenda.

In 2020 the State Bank of Pakistan partnered with non-profit Karandaaz, which is a “prime delivery partner of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.”

In 2021 the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation granted Karandaaz $4 million “to integrate the Ehsaas Program (biggest Government to Person Program in Pakistan) with RAAST-Pakistan’s Instant Payment System to enable interoperability and choice for the beneficiaries.”

Contributing to the WEF blog post are the World Bank’s technical advisor for Digital Public Infrastructure and Digital ID Tariq Malik, along with the U.N.-based Better Than Cash Alliance’s head of Asia Pacific Prerna Saxena and Pakistan lead Raza Matin.

The U.N.’s Better Than Cash Alliance advocates for “responsible digital payments” and repeatedly states it does not want to abolish physical cash.

However, the Better Than Cash Alliance does want more women to have accounts in their own name, which could also lead to more citizens being tracked, traced, and taxed in the digital system:

We do not want to abolish physical cash, but rather wish to ensure that people have choice in how they make and receive payments. It is important for people to have digital payment options that are responsible and ‘better than cash’ – for example, a woman can have a payment account in her own name, which she manages. To be clear, we do not want to prevent people from using cash, as sometimes it is the best or only payment option.

Speaking at the World Bank Group’s inaugural Global Digital Summit last March, World Bank President Ajay Banga said that digital identity should be embraced worldwide, and that governments should be the owners, so they can guarantee privacy and security for their citizens.

According to Banga, once everyone is hooked-up to a digital ID, then it can be linked to existing infrastructure run by private companies.

“Creating a digital identity platform for citizenry is kind of foundational, and I believe your government should be the owner of your digital ID; private companies should not own that,” said the World Bank president, adding, “it is the social contract of the citizens of their countries to have an identity, a currency, and safety. We should not take that away from them.”

“They should have the digital identity; that digital identity should guarantee the privacy of that citizen; it should help them with their security, but the government should give the identity,” said Banga, adding:

Once you do that, then connecting them to the infrastructure that a private company, either Ericsson or Verizon, or combinations of them – in fact mostly it’s a combination – then the question is, ‘What do you do with it that requires a digital ID?’ so you can start connecting with that citizen.

For Banga and other unelected globalists, digital identity is the key to unlocking access to goods and services through public-private partnerships – the fusion of corporation and state.

Last year, the United Nations partnered with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to launch the 50-in-5 Digital Public Infrastructure campaign to accelerate digital ID, digital payments systems, and data sharing among 50 countries by 2028.

Last week, former British prime minister-turned globalist technocracy enthusiast Tony Blair said that digital ID was essential to modern infrastructure but would require “a little work of persuasion.”

Speaking on a panel about Digital Public Infrastructure at the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) 2023 Spring Meetings, Infosys co-founder and ex-chair of the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), Nandan Nilekani, said that everybody should have a digital ID, a bank account, and a smartphone as they were the “tools of the New World” for digital public infrastructure.

India is the globalists’ shining example of what DPI should look like in practice.

Following the B20 India Summit last year, the leaders of the B20 published their annual communique, with a section dedicated to DPI rollouts.

The B20 India communique called on G20 nations to rollout DPI, with the first policy action being to “Promote the digitization of identities at the individual, enterprise, and farm levels that are both interoperable and recognized across borders.“

As a key performance indicator for digital ID rollouts, the B20 recommended that “G20 nations develop guidelines for unique single digital identification for MSME [micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises] and individuals that can be securely accessed (based on consent) by different government and private stakeholders for identity verification and information access within 3 years.”

Speaking at the WEF Global Technology Governance Summit in April 2021, Ukraine’s Minister of Digital Transformation Mykhailo Fedorov said that his government’s goal was to create a digital ID system that would make Ukraine the most convenient State in the world by operating like a digital service provider.

“We have to make a product that is so convenient that a person will be able to disrupt their stereotypes, to breakthrough from their fears, and start using a government-made application,” said Fedorov.

“Our goal is to enable all life situations with this digital ID,” he added.

While Ukraine has sought to enable all life situations with its digital ID, the WEF reports that digital identity “is now a standard feature in every adult Pakistani’s life.”

Reprinted with permission from The Sociable.

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