Pay day for me tomorrow for my wage job. Between federal tax deductions, Canada pension, and unemployment insurance run by the government, those expenses amount to 27% of my gross pay. There will be additional costs from the 14cents per liter fuel tax, and sales tax on most goods except food, provincial and federal of 12%. And then the consumption taxes on alcohol and tobacco, if that’s ones choice, municipal property taxes, occasional building permits, assorted other minor expenses.
That expense pays for air traffic control, national defense (which I estimate we don’t need), apart from the case for a good coast guard and fisheries policing, which we don’t have… It also pays for roads and bridges, all infrastructure projects, paid maternity leave, the food inspection agency, unemployment benefits, agricultural services, policing, snow clearing, water treatment, public health, emergency services, street paving, icebreakers, the courts on all levels, wildlife research, communications networks, overseas aid, Canadian national parks, fireworks displays, vaccine development, etc, etc. And last but far from least, health care, so that I don’t have to pay a fee at all, or deal with second class service because the rich took all the best to their elite clinics.
If the wealthy elite paid anything close to their fair share, my portion to shoulder would be far less, but tax fraud and avoidance are rampant, off shore accounts, etc, to the degree that many millionaires pay no taxes at all.
Even so, I am proud to pay those taxes, and feel that I get excellent value for the money. Note that this is cash comparable to the monthly health care premiums cited earlier by Steve, and on an individual basis this level of contribution pays for my entire country. From my perspective the system suffered under in the US looks like a country within a country, extracting enough wealth to do all that I describe. Instead it is plowed into offshore business and mansions in Tahoe, etc for the enjoyment of an elite.
If I felt they were doing more and better, I would gladly pay more for it, just as I will gladly donate to a good cause. Government is actually extremely efficient in use of resources, be it municipally, provincially or federally. Tax dollars go a very long way, major bang for the buck. It’s not coincidence that the Ebola vaccine was developed in Winnipeg at the disease control laboratory, with my tax dollars, proud to say. Didn’t see that coming from a for profit pharmaceutical company, despite all their awesome propaganda…
For me that leaves this as not an argument about freedom and paying for others, you could have more than enough for everyone with half the present expense, and then pocket your extra cash if you so chose.