ARE THE POOR GETTING POORER?

Since the nineties the wealthy and the poor in Canada has been steadily growing.  In 2008 the average income of the top 10 per cent of Canadians was $103,500 – 10  times that of the bttom 10 per cent, who had an  average income of $10, 260.  The richest one per cent of Canadians saw their share of total income rise to 13.3 per cent in 2007 from 8.1 per cent in 1980.

Moreover, the richest of the rich – the top o.1 per cent – saw their share more than double, to 5.3 per cent from two per cent.

The sad fact is that income inequality has been rising more rapidly in Canada than in the United States since the mid-1990s.  Furthermore,  an analysis of 18 countries found that Canada had the fourth largest increase in inequality in the last 20 years.

Thre are social implications here also.  There is a link between income inequality and poor health.

What can be done about this disparity?  Taxing the rich more as Warren Buffett suggests – is one way to go.  Also closing tax loopholes and using the tax system to redistribute wealth more equitably.

Would you support more income redistribution in Canada?

Are poor Canadians getting poorer?

What do you think?

11 Comments »

  1. 1

    Not only are poor Canadians getting poorer, but middle income Canadians, are as well.

    I would support income redistribution, ONLY if the welfare rolls and unemployment rolls come down to a bare minimum as they are intended. That means that the government would have to provide more income/job possibilities, and those “We’re Hiring”, “Help Wanted” signs disappear, meaning all those jobs have been filled.

    Canadians may be getting poorer, but there are many who are dependent on a too-generous system which can no longer support them.
    We’ve lost our competitive edge and along the way our pride in self-support.

    Please note: I am not referring to legitimately unabled people. In fact, they could get much more of what they need if there was a redistribution of welfare, benefits, and services.

  2. 2
    Neil McKenty Says:

    The argument against your position, Patti, is that too many lazy Canadians sit back and live on the government’s dime.

  3. 3

    How is that an argument AGAINST my position? That is my position.

  4. 4
    Tony Kondaks Says:

    Why, Neil, is it a “sad fact” that the rich are getting more income?

    This is a welcome fact: the more income they get, the more taxes they pay, thus funding all sort of entitlement programs for the less fortunate.

    If you raise the top marginal rates, all this will do is DECREASE tax revenue. Remember: the rich are not only employers but employees of themselves…put tax rates too high and they will simply give themselves less salary and find other ways besides income to chamnel capital to themselves: loans, taking principle, capital gains, etc.

  5. 5

    I`ve often heard the line that by giving the wealthy tax breaks,they create jobs. The problem is that those jobs are in China .

    Canada already has a generous welfare system-Medicare, EI,pensions and the rest of it. We did have a solid middle class,but the hollowing out of the manufacturing sector meant the loss of decent-paying jobs. We`re stuck with people selling each other insurance and stock options.

    Short term,keep re-building the infrastructure to help with jobs. Get kids to finish their education,especially here in Quebec.

    The anti-tax brigade figures they know how to create jobs. I don`t think anybody knows. All we can do ,outside of government hiring,is to create the right conditions.

  6. 6
    Neil McKenty Says:

    Tony, you seem to be wedded to the “trickle down” theory. That’s been discredited again and again.

  7. 7
    Tony Kondaks Says:

    Neil: yes, I most certainly am wedded to the trickle down theory but the tax policy under discussion has nothing to do with that.

  8. 8

    HI Neil: Sorry, I didn’t direct my question to you-
    See your comment #2 & my question #3

  9. 9
    youngshoutman Says:

    Neil,
    Regarding today’s big news of the historic relegating of the UK out of the inner core of the European Union do you think that this could open up opportunities for Canada to reclaim its position as one of the primary trading partners of the UK – and that both prime ministers should make an effort to do so?
    Slightly off-topic sorry but its a huge story…

  10. 10
    Neil McKenty Says:

    youngshoutman,

    Welcome back to the blog. We missed you. There is much merit in what you say about increased trade with the U.K. but I think Harper’s main interest at the moment is to juice up trad with Asia.

  11. 11
    youngshoutman Says:

    Thank you,
    I think it will be interesting to see Camerons next move.


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