Harmonised Sales Tax (HST): BC's Welfare System For Big Business
Gone are the days, it seems, when government would take from the privileged to give to the underprivileged. As evidenced by the Bank Bailout in the U.S., and BC’s (and Ontario’s) Harmonised Sales Tax, Robbing Hoods of the 21st century are here to do just the opposite: make the rich richer on the backs of the lower and middle class.
You may have wondered why Big Business is so supportive of HST. After all, sales tax is tax, and everyone has to pay it at the cash register, right? Yes, except that registered businesses will get it all back from the government, and the actual cost of the tax will be borne by those that are not eligible to claim a refund, that is, white and blue collar workers, seniors and the unemployed.
BC Government will actually lose billions in revenue after HST business refunds kick in, but will make up for the shortfall by taxes paid by consumers on an expanded range of goods and services previously not subject to provincial sales tax, such as books and haircuts. Contrary to the smokescreen put out by the government, this is nothing but a shifting of the tax burden from corporations to consumers, BC's corporate welfare system. Since, as a rule, you tax what you want people to buy less of, one wonders about the wisdom of pulling off such a scheme during a recession.
Like GST, this will be an accounting nightmare for many small businesses, and any advantages will be wiped out by collection and accounting costs. For some businesses such as restaurants it may be devastating since BC has not had a sales tax on restaurant food before, and many people may find eating out prohibitive. Lawyer bills will come under provincial taxation for the first time, but will not affect corporate clients that will get their taxes refunded. It will affect families that end up in court, and make BC's outrageous legal fees even more expensive for those that can least afford it.
According to Jack Layton, leader of the federal NDP, homes will be just too expensive for many first-time buyers because of the sales tax conspiracy hatched between the Liberals and Conservatives. It's now almost common knowledge, however, that BC Liberals are none other than Conservatives in drag playing both sides of the fence, and Trudeau may be turning over in his grave.