As evidenced by his letter below in today’s Calgary Herald, obviously Debra Yedlin’s recent article struck a nerve with Jim Flaherty’s press secretary, Dan Miles. So much so that Dan Miles has resorted to calling for the facts. This is a most desperate move by Dan Miles to accuse someone else of ignoring the facts and to be calling for the facts.
After all, Jim Flaherty’s income trust policy was an A – Z exercise in ignoring the facts. Apart from ignoring the facts, Jim Flaherty also blindly ignored the reality of what he was doing.
Witness the 40 trust takeouts like Prime West Energy by Abu Dhab Energy or TransAlta Power by Li Ka Shing. Witness the ultimate fate of BCE. These foreseen and foreseeable adverse outcomes have caused $2 billion a year in real tax leakage, to solve an alleged tax leakage problem that never existed in the first place. Foreseen by all those in the know, except Jim Flaherty and Dan Miles......and Stephen Harper.
If Dan Miles is such a born again proponent of the facts. Then I have one question for him and his boss. Where are the facts that support tax leakage? In fact where are any of the facts that support any of the five propositions of the Ways and Means Motion?
Where are the facts to support the false invocation of seniors that read “Strengthening Canada’s social security system for pensioners and seniors”? How could an income trust tax conceivably do that? Where are the facts? Or is the simple fact that the income trust tax is one big massive fraud being perpetrated on a fact starved populous by Dan Miles et al?
Given Dan Miles' new found love for facts, he will be comforted to know that we have the facts that prove that it is a massive fraud. Which no doubt explains why these balcked out documents issued under the Access to Information Act were demanded to be returned by Jim Flaherty. That too is a fact.
For the record
Published: Sunday, July 20, 2008
Re: "Stop-gap thinking guides Flaherty," Deborah Yedlin, Opinion, July 17.
Deborah Yedlin accuses Finance Minister Jim Flaherty of avoiding Calgary since the income trust announcement on Oct. 31, 2006.
If she had bothered to check the record, she would have found that Flaherty was in the city on Aug. 30, 2007 to address the Canada West Foundation and on Jan. 15, 2008 for pre-budget consultations. Both visits were reported in the Herald.
Yedlin suggests the government removed an "element of flexibility" by reducing the GST. By reducing the GST and other taxes, the government has injected a fiscal stimulus into the economy equivalent to 1.4 per cent of GDP, or $21 billion in incremental tax relief to Canadians and businesses this year.
Yedlin says the government's long-term economic plan, Advantage Canada, "appears not to include post-secondary education."
If she bothered to read the plan, she would have noted that it includes a "Knowledge Advantage" with a goal of creating the best educated, skilled and flexible workforce. In Budget 2008, the government unveiled a consolidated Canada Student Grant Program that will reach 245,000 undergraduate and college students per year, along with other scholarships for graduate and international students.
Yedlin made reference to the development of the new rules governing the conversion from an income trust to a corporation. She boldly suggested that "there was no dialogue between Calgary and Ottawa." The fact is tax practitioners from across the country, including Calgary, were consulted by officials in the Department of Finance. The new rules are out for public comment until Sept. 15, 2008.
It appears Yedlin was so focused on writing a negative piece that she decided to ignore the facts.
Dan Miles, Ottawa
Dan Miles is director of communications for Finance Minister Jim Flaherty.
Monday, July 21, 2008
Posted by Fillibluster at 9:37 AM