Andrew Coyne gets it (deliberately?) wrong again

Andrew Coyne, the scion of a Liberal family, always refuses to admit that he is a Liberal, and that Justin Trudeau is his God, but virtually every column he writes (for which he is grossly unqualified and overpaid) betrays his true leanings – as does his most recent one, in which he argues in favour of a carbon tax in Canada (even if the United States does not adopt one) and an ever decreasing Canadian dollar.

According to Mr. Coyne, Canada should go ahead with the planned carbon tax even if that were to put the country at a competitive disadvantage relative to its southern neighbour. He argues that the Canadian dollar would depreciate against the US dollar, making our products cheaper to export.

While this is true, turning our currency into banana-republic money isn’t helping Canadians, who depend on imports to a large degree. We’d have runaway inflation, and Canadian households, already struggling, would find themselves in the poorhouse.

Mr. Coyne also says that a carbon tax, effectively a consumption tax that will make everything more expensive, would be offset by income tax cuts.

This last bit makes you wonder if Mr. Coyne still lives in the same country, or on the same planet, as the rest of us. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has been crystal-clear: his federal carbon tax would not be offset by comparable cuts to personal income taxes.

When Stéphane Dion introduced his Green Shift plan in 2008 as a candidate for the leadership of the Liberal Party, he at least had the courtesy and decency to promise that his carbon measures would be offset by tax cuts elsewhere.

In fact, that’s what any good economist will tell you: every consumption tax must be balanced against income taxes, and ideally we’d move to a system of consumption taxes and zero taxes on income.

But Mr. Trudeau, not an economist or academic of any kind, but an untalented wannabe actor in a former life, has steamrolled over this well-established economic principle – he wants to bleed Canadians dry, all for the sake of an ideology (man-made climate change that we humans actually stand a chance of doing something about) that is nothing but a fairy-tale (cooked up by the extreme left – no, not in China, as Donald Trump claims – to sneak communism in through the back door without anyone noticing).

Canada doesn’t have a choice: if the US decides against carbon taxes and similar climate-change measures, then we cannot afford to go against the stream in a self-harming exercise. It wouldn’t hurt privileged and well-protected Andrew Coyne (yes, a member of the malodorous elite), but it would destroy the majority of Canadians.

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