December 10, 2014

Some rants on Canadian stuff (Part 2)

Alright, I get it Tea Party. Being unhappy with the representatives from your own side can happen.  Here in Canada that hasn't been a really big issue.  Our Conservative Party government has for the most part acted as conservatively as they could, given our center-left population.  It's a tough job given the circumstances, I get that.  Nevertheless, there's a few things they've done that have not been...perfect.

This morning I sent an email to Prime Minister Harper paraphrasing the points below.  I've never bothered to do that before.

I'm as about as conservative as they come.  I've never once in my life voted for a liberal candidate. I've always supported the conservative party, and even more so since they joined forces with Canada's version of the Tea Party, the Reform Party, long ago.  I've always been a supporter of Stephen Harper's government.  In fact, I voted for the conservative party candidate in a special election to replace our Finance Minister who hails from my riding (district, in American-speak) just a few weeks ago.

So I've got to be more than just a little annoyed to say what I'm about to say right now.  I'm not sure I want to vote for the Conservative party in the next election, I'm considering abstaining.

Why?

The conservatives have rolled out a number of new initiatives knowing that 2015 will be an election year.  Most of them are worthwhile - keeping taxes low, or lowering them where possible, consumer protection against cable and wireless companies and banks (you know, populist type stuff).  But the one thing that really, really irks me, is the selective nature of the tax credits they are proposing.

They have promised to give additional tax credits to working families.  On the surface, that seems fine but to qualify you must have your children, under 18 only, living with you.

This comes on the heels of the discussion of income splitting for seniors to reduce their tax burden.

Not to sound greedy, but seriously; what's in it for me?  I'm not a senior, and my oldest son is over 18 and my youngest lives with my ex-wife.  I'm already paying a pretty hefty child support bill every month, and she's remarried and living in a bigger house than I am, and taking multiple vacations every year.  But she's going to get this tax credit, while I get nothing.

That may sound bitter, but I have struggled financially over the last couple of years and I'm not happy to be excluded from a tax break which would definitely be helpful to my entire household.

It seems to me the most egalitarian thing to do would be cut rates across the board by a smaller amount rather than to use the tax code as a method of social engineering (to promote families, sorry, I'm not in a position to hop on that train), or else to pander to a voting block.  Either way, that's no different from what the liberal and socialist parties have done for decades. That's something I thought conservatives stood against.  Apparently not.

Unless something else happens before election time, I'm not inclined to throw my, until now unwavering, support behind the conservative party.

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