1) Has McCallum let his National Post subscription lapse? Does he not know that an expensive war, slowing growth and Harper's tax cuts have left the federal government on the razor's edge of a deficit?
And given that …
2) If the Liberals have decided that tax cuts for their pals in the big banks are their top priority, how do they expect anyone to believe their pre-election promises on anything that costs more than a postage stamp?
Harper is flushing Ottawa's fiscal capacity down the drain: changing Canada forever. And their pals the Liberals are with them step for step. They won’t side with the NDP to save some of that money for child care, for tuition reduction, for poverty reduction.
At least we know where the Liberals stand. With Harper.
UPDATE: Here’s the NDP’s sharp defence against McCallum’s noise:
REALITY CHECK: Liberals wrong on corporate tax cuts
Wed 2 Apr 2008
In explaining why the Liberal Party won’t vote against the Conservative government today, Liberal Finance Critic John McCallum accused the NDP of being out of step with social democratic parties by not making irresponsible corporate tax cuts a priority:
[McCallum] called the NDP "the Neanderthal branch of social democrats worldwide," arguing that social democratic governments in Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Britain have reduced corporate tax rates lower than Canada."It’s not a left-right issue for sensible, modern-day Liberals and social democrats but the NDP is still buried in the ideology of the 1950s and for them lower corporate tax rates are evil." (Halifax Chronicle Herald, 2 April 2008)
Mr. McCallum is wrong.
As of 2007, before the latest reduction to 19.5%, Canada’s corporate tax rate was 21% -- already the 7th lowest in the OECD. The countries McCallum cited in fact all have higher central government tax rates than Canada: Sweden (28%); Norway (28%); Denmark (25%); and Britain (30%). (Source: OECD Tax Database, 2007)
And while some social democratic governments have reduced their corporate taxes marginally, none have done so as irresponsibly as the Conservative and Liberal governments in Canada:
In Sweden: Social Democrats lowered corporate taxes two points from 30% to 28% in 1994.
In Britain: The Labour government lowered corporate taxes three points from 33% to 30% between 1996 and 1999.
In Denmark: Social Democrats lowered corporate taxes four points from 34% to 30% between 1998 and 2001.
In Norway: Has had the same corporate rate of 28% since 1992.
By comparison, Canada has already lowered its corporate taxes 8.5 points from 28% to 19.5% between 2001 to 2008 – and will lower it another 4.5 points by 2015.
Jack Layton and the New Democrats have been clear on the need for focused tax reductions for ailing sectors like manufacturing and forestry. But what the Conservatives and Liberals want is an irresponsible agenda of giving breaks to profitable companies at a rate three times deeper than the social democratic governments McCallum cited.
That’s why the NDP doesn’t have confidence in the Harper government’s agenda, while the Liberals continue to.