Canada’s credit card is near the limit

Letters to the editor

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Last week Lorrie Goldstein wrote in the Toronto Sun that “many members of the Trudeau government say there is a conservative argument in favour of a guaranteed annual income replacing all the other government support payments.”

He added it would pay $24,000 a year for all working age Canadians aged 18 to 64 regardless of income, costing the government $464.5 billion a year. Wow! The estimates are from the Fraser Institute.

Who and what is going to pay for this? Such a plan has been volleyed about by socialists for years but usually ends up in the garbage bin.

We are reminded daily of a possible second COVID-19 wave. Remember the first one has cost the country billions and it’s not over. How could we finance another one and try to pay for such a plan? The money pit is drained, the country’s credit card must be near the limit and how much more taxes can Canadians afford? Plus, Mr. Trudeau and his gang of spendthrifts have many more self-imposed fires still to put out.

Canada’s largest lenders, commenting in Bloomberg News, are warning the prime minister that he doesn’t have carte blanche to run massive deficits even though there is some room for additional spending in the next couple of years.

For those who have been paying attention (and we sometimes wonder how many are not) there is concern when we are facing a debt of $1.2 trillion plus debts the provinces have rung up.

There is another issue Canadians should be concerned about. It is seldom, if ever, talked about. It is the effect a guaranteed annual income can have on individuals:

Steve Forbes, editor-in-chief of Forbes magazine, writes: “A guaranteed income would be corrosive to people’s work ethic, especially as politicians raised the benefits whenever elections rolled around. It would eat away at the crucial link between effort and reward and would lure many people away from pursuing more productive lives. This is wrong, morally and economically.

“Work is critical to making our lives meaningful. It gives us purpose. It provides structure and encourages discipline helping us to look beyond the immediate moment and think about the future. It encourages the can-do spirit that is unique to the American culture. Work produces the resources that we consume and the innovations that improve our standard of living.”

Agree or not, it gives us another avenue to think about.

Robert J. Sullivan