... The buzz is that the government may backtrack on its promise to introduce income-splitting once it has balanced the budget.
... If the Tories do decide not to spend a couple of billion dollars establishing what most of their supporters do think of as fairness in the tax system, they need to come up with a better rationale than the one they’ve floated so far, which is the Liberal-technocratic one that in today’s labour market the skill shortage is so acute we mustn’t do anything that encourages skilled workers to withdraw ...
Don’t we know there’s a skill shortage (supposedly) and a productivity crisis (supposedly) and that, like our Olympic athletes, we all need to put our shoulder to the wheel for the Motherland?
Well, that may be how they do things in Putin’s Russia, where the leadership regards every Russian as one of Putin’s workers. But it’s not how we do things here. We’re not all Harper’s, or Flaherty’s, workers.Strengthening families by increasing their options has been core Conservative social policy from square one. And tax policy that encourages people to raise families is one way (besides immigration) to help sustain our economic growth. It is also a step towards an effective alternative to unaffordable "progressive" programs like national universal daycare.
How we do things here is that we establish a fair tax system that raises the revenues we need to pay for basic services .... And then we let people make their own decisions about the relative worth of making an extra dollar of market income versus tending to their own or their family’s needs. In particular, we don’t have a policy that says, even implicitly, a woman’s place is in the labour market combating the skill shortage.
If Stephen Harper fails to keep his income-splitting promise it will be at the Conservatives' peril. While no serious Conservative supporter would waste his vote on any other party, many, like me, would simply withhold their vote and stop donations if betrayed on this.