Thursday, August 13, 2015

On progressive evaluations

I'll give Emmett Macfarlane the benefit of the doubt in having missed one of the NDP's key promises while assessing the Libs' attempt to mimic Kathleen Wynne's campaigning on the title of "progressive" in the absence of any intention to follow up while on power. But leaving aside the utter lack of credibility of Justin Trudeau's role model, let's remember what the NDP has proposed as a means of both reining in corporate benefits and reducing child poverty - which receives absolutely no mention in Macfarlane's assessment of either:
(A)n NDP government will close the tax loophole currently enjoyed by CEOs on stock options. Those funds would be re-directed to low-income families through an enhanced Working Income Tax Benefit and an enhanced National Child Benefit Supplement.

“This will be a dollar-for-dollar transfer in benefits from those who need it the least – to those who need it the most,” added NDP Leader Tom Mulcair. “Helping families out of poverty and into the middle class is good for our social fabric, as well as supporting a vibrant economy – and that’s good for Canada.”

This move will be a meaningful step towards reducing income inequality in Canada and will contribute towards getting families and children out of poverty and into the middle class.
So to anybody else purporting to compare the NDP and Lib plans when it comes to progressive taxes on the wealthy and fighting child poverty: if you're failing to take into account a billion-dollar idea aimed squarely at both, you're missing the boat.

[Edit: fixed typo.]


  1. McFarlane also has the seriously wrongheaded notion that universal programs are less progressive than means-tested ones.

    1. A fair criticism to be sure, though I can see the argument for either depending on the circumstances of a particular program. But if that's going to be the starting assumption, then surely it's essential not to ignore the NDP's actual targeted plans.