JamieW wrote:Spaz, I wouldn't call it "free."
If I recall, provinces have either a % of income or premium based on income for healthcare.
Then the income taxes approach 50% for the average canadian income.
Then there are 7% national sales taxes. Then the provincial taxes of around the same %. Combined for about a 15% sales tax.
I wouldn't call keeping roughly 40% of your income after taxes "free."
It's a relative term with no easy explanation...
I agree that Canadians are over taxed compared to Americans. But our government also had a $9 Billion surplus last year. America had a $400 Billion deficit.
Nothing can stop the tax grab. Fact is Canada is larger than the USA, but has a population about the size of California. In otherwords: not enough people to pay for the upkeep of the territory & services. You get used to 15% taxes added on at the cash register (it's not 15% in all Provinces).
As for health care, it was rated the #1 topic of interest during our last election. Fact is, I can get cancer and have years of treatments. When I walk out of the hospital, there is no bill sent to me. IE: free. The cost of care provided can far exceed the money contributed by the individual. In Ontario the % fee was hidden as a pay roll tax, now its out in the open again and applied across a more general base. A bigger tax grab as it were.
As for 40% income tax: I'm in that range, but after RRSP (aka IRA type investment) contributions, it dropped to 17% last year for me.
Canadians are idiots if they do not have an RRSP. It's the best tax shelter in North America. We have a LOT of idiots up here.
A 24 of beer in Ontario is about $30 (about $24 US)
A litre of gas is about 82 cents ($2.52 US/Gallon) it can jump/drop 10 cents a litre overnight with no outrage from the citizens at all.
Some things cost more up here, some less.
Taxes will never go seriously down.
Such is life.