Stephen Harper and his Conservative cronies have tried to sell their corporate tax-cut scheme throughout this election.
Giving the wealthy more, it is argued, leads to more jobs.
We’ve been hearing this bunk for decades. The economist John Kenneth Galbraith said this kind of “trickle-down” economics was like feeding a horse a bucket of oats in the hopes that the sparrows get a few crumbs that drop on the ground.
For the most part, this kind of deceit passes without much scrutiny. But hopefully not for long.
A study was released by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives which debunks the link between more corporate tax cuts and job creation.
The author looked at 198 of Canada’s biggest publicly-traded companies between the period of 2000 and 2009 Ã when successive Liberal and Conservative regimes cut and cut and cut the corporate tax rate.
Today, collectively these 198 companies are “earning” 50 per cent more profit, while paying 20 per cent less taxes. This amounts to the Canadian public cutting a cheque worth $12 billion in 2009 to the biggest corporations.
So, with this extra handout from the public, are they creating jobs?
The answer is no.
Since 2005, the Canadian economy created six per cent more jobs. Over this time period, the biggest Canadian corporations created five per cent more jobs. The recipients of this bizarre charity are pulling down the average.
Job creation requires a more thoughtful, creative approach than this kind of corporate welfare.
And I think the recipients of this $12 billion in annual aid need to demonstrate a bit more value-for-money before they get any more. After all, for $12 billion we could wipe out poverty amongst seniors.
Marsh Lake, Yukon