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I’d rather keep the money in my pocket, thank you

March 2024

I wanted to respond to letter writer Annabelle Groves, particularly her statement questioning Canadians “… who parrot the phrase “axe the tax” not regularly receiving rebate cheques from the federal government?”

Well, I receive a carbon tax refund, but I still believe in “Axe the Tax.” A carbon tax is a tax and is really just a socialist wealth-redistribution scheme. Cap-and-trade is just a carbon tax under another name.

Groves states that Ontarians would not be paying the carbon tax if Premier Doug Ford hadn’t canceled the cap-and-trade program. No, Ontarians wouldn’t be paying a carbon tax if there was no carbon tax to pay. The Trudeau talking point that 80% of Canadians get more money back in rebates that they pay has been proven completely false by the Parliamentary Budget Officer.

Similarly, the Trudeau talking point that by canceling the carbon tax, Pierre Polievre will be taking money away from Canadians, is not only false, it’s essentially gas-lighting. If I don’t have to pay a tax, why does it matter if I don’t get a “refund” on that tax from the government?

The backlash that Groves claims we would see from the rich owners of carbon-emitting industries, would be in the form of higher prices for consumers. Do you really think that any business, owned by rich owners or a mom & pop store, can keep absorbing higher costs without passing them onto their customers? So in the end, the consumer loses, regardless of carbon tax or cap and trade.

If carbon taxes are the solution; if the goal is reducing the consumption of carbon-based fuels by making them too expensive, why did Trudeau bend and cancel the carbon tax on home heating fuels in the Maritimes, an area where there are a lot Liberal MPs who might lose their seats in the next election? Over a decade of carbon taxes in British Columbia haven’t reduced carbon emissions. The only reduction has been to people’s bank accounts.

Of course, some taxes, or fees, can indeed have a positive effect, especially ones that are targeted at specific areas, not a tax that punishes everyone by raising the price of all products and services we consume. The success of Ontario’s Drive Clean program, a program that required car owners to pass an emission standards test before they could re-new their vehicle permit, is a good example.

While Drive Clean was criticized by many as simply a tax-grab, especially since owners could get a conditional pass by making minimal repairs to their vehicle, so as to not overburden owners financially, it ultimately succeeded in reducing emissions. Drive Clean forced the old, inefficient, oil-burners off the road, which were replaced by cleaner, more fuel-efficient vehicles, brought about by the sensible environmental restrictions, including better fuels efficiency, that had been placed upon auto manufactures.

In fact, it worked so well that Doug Ford’s government canceled Drive Clean when it became apparent that it was no longer necessary; when it actually had become an unnecessary tax-grab, something that rarely happens with governments. Is it possible when we finally achieve the environmental utopia of a carbon-free world (something that would be bad for photosynthesis, but I digress), that the governments of the day will cancel their carbon taxes? How many of us actually believe that will happen?

My point is that we can have a cleaner environment without a tax that raises the cost of all products and services we consume. A better idea to carbon taxes is technology and innovation. Yes, in the early days of environmentalism, governments had to enact laws and regulations that forced manufacturers to invest in cleaner technologies, but by getting public support for a cleaner environment, businesses have learnt that being environmentally responsible is good for business.

Today’s climate change believers seem more like cult-like zealots than true environmentalists; they believe humans are the cause of Earth’s problems; they believe that humans should freeze in the dark to save Mother Earth. Some even advocate for having fewer children to fight climate change, because more humans mean more carbon dioxide being exhaled as we breathe.


The original letter in Barrie Today that inspired my column:

BarrieToday welcomes letters to the editor at raymond@barrietoday.com or via the website. Please include your full name, daytime phone number and address (for verification of authorship, not publication).

Let me begin by saying I am very disappointed in Justin Trudeau’s overall performance as prime minister of Canada. However, he is at least trying to do something about carbon emissions and climate change with his carbon pricing.

Are most of those Canadians who parrot the phrase “axe the tax” not regularly receiving rebate cheques from the federal government? Almost 80 per cent of Canadian households (including ours) are. But perhaps the “axe the tax”-ers’ household incomes are too big to qualify for the rebate.

British Columbia, Quebec and the Northwest Territories do not pay the federal carbon tax because those jurisdictions have their own carbon emission-reduction legislation.

Ontarians would not be paying the carbon ‘tax,’ either, if, immediately upon his election as premier, Doug Ford had not done away with the cap-and-trade policy (instituted by the previous Liberal government), thereby causing the federal government to invoke carbon pricing in Ontario.

The cap-and-trade policy would have forced industry to reduce its carbon emissions rather than placing the burden on Ontario citizens. If every province had its own legislation to reduce carbon emissions, there would be no carbon ‘tax’ in Canada. But then cap and trade would cause backlash from the rich owners of carbon-emitting industries, and provincial premiers would rather have their citizens upset at the federal government. Their only concern is how to get re-elected next time.

The federal carbon pricing is in effect only in those provinces that do not have their own carbon-reducing legislation in place. If you believe in climate change and you want to end carbon pricing, urge your local MPP and premier to have the provincial government enact its own carbon-emitting legislation, thereby “axing the tax.”

While you can blame the federal government for carbon pricing, you should be blaming your premier for having it in your province.

Annabelle Groves

Sources: https://www.barrietoday.com/letters-to-the-editor/letter-premiers-to-blame-for-federal-carbon-pricing-8489917?utm_source=BarrieToday.com&utm_campaign=0bb14ce432-DailyBAR&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_c8859d4fc8-0bb14ce432-324518997

About the author

Bruce Forsyth

Bruce Forsyth served in the Royal Canadian Navy Reserve for 13 years (1987-2000). He served with units in Toronto, Hamilton & Windsor and worked or trained at CFB Esquimalt, CFB Halifax, CFB Petawawa, CFB Kingston, CFB Toronto, Camp Borden, The Burwash Training Area and LFCA Training Centre Meaford.

Permanent link to this article: https://militarybruce.com/id-rather-keep-the-money-in-my-pocket-thank-you/

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