Keep the HST debate fires burning

30Apr10

Apparently the HST isn’t such a bad thing.

This according to today’s Toronto Star editorial. The Star says opposition leaders, like the NDP’s Andrea Horwath, are wasting their time venting about the colossal tax grab and should focus instead on “other targets.”

Really? The opposition should ignore the largest single tax increase in the history of this province and focus on other matters?

The Star has been singing the praises of the HST since McGuinty first capitulated to the federal government on the matter last summer. But the hymn book they are singing from is a flimsy one.

The current provincial sales tax “punishes” producers and makes them “less competitive”, the Star argues. Further, the (up to) $1,000 one-time rebate some Ontarians will receive to offset the implementation of the tax on goods that were previously only subject to the five per cent GST will ease the pain.

Seriously? Does the Star really think that working and lower class Ontarians are going to be placated by a one-time “buy off” of $1,000 — a fraction of what this tax will cost some of them in its first year alone?

I don’t know why the Star continues to support the HST, but I do know the argument that it isn’t going to hurt the average Ontarian much is nonsense.

I don’t recall now, but I’d love to look back at the Star‘s reaction to the handouts the Mike Harris government used in trying to blind Ontarians to their agenda — the one-time $200 income tax rebate is one I remember well. Did the Star react as favourably when Harris and the Tories pulled this kind of stunt?

The HST is going to hurt the average Ontarian immeasurably. Sadly, it’s too late now and it will not be repealed.

But that doesn’t mean the opposition parties should wave the white flag. Our current provincial government needs to be held accountable for this deed.

It’s a colossal tax hike, plain and simple. And that is why it must be protested.

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