Tag: corporate income tax

Wealth inequality isn’t just an American problem…it’s also a Canadian problem

As many of you already know, wealth inequality is a serious problem here in the United States. In America, the wealthiest 1% of the country’s population own more wealth than the poorest 90% of Americans.

However, wealth inequality is also a serious problem north of the border.

The Broadbent Institute, a Canadian progressive think tank based in Ottawa, Ontario, produced this YouTube video highlighting the serious wealth inequality problem in Canada:

While, according to the Broadbent Institute’s survey, most Canadians realize that there will always be people that are wealthier than others, they believe that the wealthiest 20% of Canadians should have roughly three times as much wealth as the poorest 20% of Canadians do. They also believe that the middle 60% of Canadians should have roughly 60% of the total wealth in the country.

According to the Broadbent Institute’s data, most Canadians also think that wealth distribution is more unequal than what the believe is ideal. They think that the wealthiest 20% has ten times as much wealth as the poorest 20%. They also believe that the wealthiest 20% holds a majority (no exact number provided; judging by the pie chart provided in the video at the 1:19 mark, approximately 55%) of the country’s wealth.

However, wealth distribution is even more unequal than most Canadians think it is. The poorest 20% of Canadians own less than 1% of the country’s total wealth, in fact, the bottom 10% actually has more debt than assets. Additionally, the poorest 50% of Canadians own only 6% of the country’s total wealth. On the other hand, the top 1% of Canadians own 20% of the country’s total wealth, and the wealthiest 20% own nearly 70% of the country’s total wealth. Furthermore, the top 10% of Canadians hold 60% of the country’s total financial assets (which includes financial instruments like stocks and bonds), and the average Canadian CEO makes a staggering 206 times as much money as their average employee.

One of the reasons that income inequality has become a major problem in Canada in recent decades is, as cited by the Broadbent Institute, the declining amount of government spending on social services, such as health care, housing, transportation, and education. Additionally, recent polling by the Broadbent Institute shows that, 80% of Canadians support raising personal income taxes on those in the highest Canadian income tax bracket (all three of Canada’s largest political parties oppose this) and 75% of Canadians support raising the corporate income tax rate in Canada (the New Democratic Party of Canada supports a corporate tax increase at the federal level in Canada).

Just like here in America, wealth inequality is a major problem in Canada. Additionally, just like the major political parties in America, the major political parties in Canada are asleep at the wheel when it comes to the wealth inequality problem.

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Republican Nevada Assembly Majority Leader-designate Michele Fiore has had over a million dollars in federal tax liens filed against her

Michele Fiore, a Republican member of the Nevada State Assembly from Las Vegas who will become the majority leader (#2 Republican) of the state assembly once Republicans officially assume the majority in that chamber, has had over a million dollars in federal tax liens filed against her and her business:

Michele Fiore, the newly crowned Assembly majority leader-to-be, has had more than $1 million in federal tax liens filed against her and her business during the last decade, some as recently as this summer.

The liens […] were filed in Nevada and Colorado, and include nearly $350,000 in liability for taxes she withheld from employee wages during the last six years. Fiore’s company, Always There Personal Care of Nevada, has had nearly $700,000 in liens filed against it during the last decade, some of which (nearly $200,000) have been released.

Fiore also has had personal income tax liens totalling (sic) $58,000, which she tried to turn to her advantage when one lien was discovered by the Nevada News Bureau’s Elizabeth Crum during the assemblywoman’s disastrous 2010 run for Congress, by asserting, “My case is a perfect example of an over-reaching government using its power and bureaucracy to intimidate its citizens.”

Tax liens are usually not government overreach. They are a legally valid method used by tax collecting agencies to collect back taxes. Given how systemic Fiore’s refusal to pay taxes has been, I’m all but certain that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has a valid reason to be filing tax liens against Fiore.

Nevadans simply cannot trust Michele Fiore and her Republican allies to manage Nevada’s finances (the Nevada Legislature is responsible for, among other things, passing a state budget) when Fiore can’t manage her own personal finances.