Harper says `major' changes coming to pension system


Ron in Regina
+2
#121
Quote: Originally Posted by CannuckView Post

Since nobody has to work for the benefit, why should immigrants. My mother never worked a day in her life if you discount house work. Do you have a problem with her as well?

She did spend her life here in Canada (I'm assuming) contributing to
the ecomony with her purchases (for the household) over the coarse
of her lifespan. Would that factor in...as Dad was bringing home the
bacon?
 
Durry
#122
Quote: Originally Posted by Ron in ReginaView Post

She did spend her life here in Canada (I'm assuming) contributing to
the ecomony with her purchases (for the household) over the coarse
of her lifespan. Would that factor in...as Dad was bringing home the
bacon?

Good point !!
 
Cannuck
#123
Quote: Originally Posted by DurryView Post

Well working was just an example, the issue is that there has to be some policy in place that would prevent immigrant senior scamming the good will of Hard working tax paying Canadians.

Why not just have policies in place to prevent anyone (regardless of whether they are born in this country or came here yesterday) from scamming the system or due you feel that people born in Canada are above that sort of thing?
 
Tonington
+1
#124
Quote: Originally Posted by DurryView Post

Good point !!

She's just spending money her husband earned from his contribution to economic production. It doesn't really matter if he buys his groceries or someone else does.

OAS is welfare, some percentage of GDP collected in taxes and given out in welfare. So if you want to tie OAS to working then I guess the government could do away with OAS and contribute that percentage to CPP instead. But then what do you do for a woman like Cannuck's mother when the bread winner passes on before she does? The survivor benefits for CPP in this scenario would max out at 60% of Cannuck's father's contributed CPP funds. The household will never recover the funds that were paid into CPP. That's a bit sketchy isn't it?
 
Cannuck
+1
#125
Quote: Originally Posted by Ron in ReginaView Post

She did spend her life here in Canada (I'm assuming) contributing to
the ecomony with her purchases (for the household) over the coarse
of her lifespan.

Did she? How would the government know that. She could have spent her days laying on the couch drinking scotch and watching soaps for all big brother knows.
 
taxslave
#126
Quote: Originally Posted by CannuckView Post

Why not just have policies in place to prevent anyone (regardless of whether they are born in this country or came here yesterday) from scamming the system or due you feel that people born in Canada are above that sort of thing?

It is not scamming. Or at least not by those collecting. The real problem is that a vote hungry Liberal government set the rules up this way. Course now if Harper fixes the problem he will be viewed as being the a$$hole by the lefties.
 
TenPenny
#127
What a bunch of whiners; I remember when retirement age was reduced from 72 to 65, it wasn't that long ago. And that's part of what causes the pension mess.
 
Cannuck
#128
Quote: Originally Posted by TenPennyView Post

What a bunch of whiners; I remember when retirement age was reduced from 72 to 65, it wasn't that long ago. And that's part of what causes the pension mess.

The only thing I ever heard of it was the sound of the stampede to the trough.
 
Ron in Regina
#129
Quote: Originally Posted by CannuckView Post

Did she? How would the government know that. She could have spent her days laying on the couch drinking scotch and watching soaps for all big brother knows.

Where did the scotch come from?
 
MHz
#130
Quote: Originally Posted by petrosView Post

I've been to Chile a couple times but I've never been to Chili. Is it chilly in Chili?

If you see Penguins you are too far south and if you gasp for air you are too far inland.

The cheapest way there is apparently a life-raft that starts it's journey off Vancouver Island and you flip on the ERB in about 4 weeks if the doldrums are small. Taking your own boat might help you make a living if you can meet some locals that would be willing to guide you around safely when you have some paying guests on board. Give them the bigger profit and full ownership of the boat and they would have to hire somebody to prowl the tourist places for clients and able to purchase a replacement boat when that one wears out.

The business could range from a 30ft that could do 6 people for a weekend to a 130' cat that is capable of holding 1600 people on a day cruise.

Just be sure to check in you anti-ship missiles when you first enter a new Nation, they might even give them back when your destination includes International Waters and a different Nation. McGregor used to make a water ballast single masted sloop that has a water-line that is more than 60ft. Dump out the water and attach a modern version of a paddle wheel and going far up-river and coastal flood planes is a new area for the tourists. Almost any size boat would allow you to travel the whole coast of South America doing the same thing, not to chilly, not too hot.

Perhaps some clear pods that be lowered and the tourists would get a 360deg view of Penguins underwater, BC could use then for the whale watching but their designs would be towed behind and steerable and they would be keeping pace with the cruising whales. Seal colonies would be the stationary pods and be anchored just off the busiest part of the sea traffic. Chummed water for the shark fans and no SCUBA certification needed and you can text from the pods that are just too big to swallow and the float in an emergency. Riding the waves in a huge storm might also be another sourse of income nor that recovery could be as easy as following the beacon. The chair for that model might want to be mounted like a gyroscope and have a center of gravity that keeps the occupant in a 'mostly' upright position. Any ride that would involve crashing onto a shore would beend some sort of 'bounce factor' so it ricochets off the rocks (like 80 ft straight up) rather than a dead stop that would trigger air-bags in a car.

What is the investment factor so far including insurance and waiver agreements compared to potential income from tourism and sale of the various pod designs for use by 'the Company' and other companies and individuals in various locations throughout the watery parts of the globe?
Last edited by MHz; Jan 29th, 2012 at 02:16 PM..
 
Cannuck
+1
#131
Quote: Originally Posted by Ron in ReginaView Post

Where did the scotch come from?

Gawd damn immigrants brought it over.
 
darkbeaver
+1
#132
Quote: Originally Posted by CannuckView Post

Since nobody has to work for the benefit, why should immigrants. My mother never worked a day in her life if you discount house work. Do you have a problem with her as well?

Instead of recognizing your poor aged mothers contribution to society you discounted her lifes work without blinking at word #14 and then as a distant second thought (you were always first in her mind) at word #22 you cover your unworthy of her love ass. We should give her your pension as well and make you sleep under the porch. What an ungrateful mutant offspring.
 
MHz
#133
Quote: Originally Posted by TenPennyView Post

What a bunch of whiners; I remember when retirement age was reduced from 72 to 65, it wasn't that long ago. And that's part of what causes the pension mess.

Perhaps it should be raised to 95 while still collecting the same fees.
 
Cannuck
#134
Quote: Originally Posted by darkbeaverView Post

Instead of recognizing your poor aged mothers contribution to society you discounted her lifes work ....

No I haven't.
 
coldstream
#135
Quote: Originally Posted by MachjoView Post

I see. So we print and borrow our way to prosperity and raise tariffs against the competition while expecting no treatment in kind. Brilliant.

Yes, i expect every country to act in their own best interests.. but within the context of objective mutual interests.. rather than that of a global, post national trading and financial cartel.. utterly amoral and predatory and acting exclusively its own best interest.

I propose thes the healthiest of all trading relationships.. one that realizes good fences make good neighbours and ensures the primacy of activating the productive forces and potential of a national economy.. rather than playing one country off against another for the profit on neither, only that of the middleman.

As for your comments of printing currency.. there is no difference between printing bonds.. and printing currency.. except bonds require you to pay interest. Nothing could be worse than what we have now, with currencies and currency derivatives sloshing around the world completely unregulated... comprising a claim of many times the world's productive capacity. When this collapses.. as it will inevitably will.. it will wash away the world's financial system.

It is already being held together by string and bubble gum.. you see an encroaching collapse approaching in Europe, in fact, around the world. Free Markets have FAILED and are IN a state of imminent self destruction.
Last edited by coldstream; Jan 31st, 2012 at 01:51 PM..
 
mentalfloss
#136
Research belies PM’s warning about OAS

Expert advice commissioned by the federal government contradicts Stephen Harper’s warnings that Canada can’t afford the looming bill for Old Age Security payments.

The Prime Minister and his ministers forcefully defended their surprise plans to review OAS on Monday, as the year’s first sitting of Parliament exploded with accusations from the opposition that the Conservatives misled Canadians during the 2011 federal election.

Mr. Harper held his ground, insisting Canada’s aging population means Ottawa must change the rules for future seniors to ensure it has the long-term cash to cut a growing number of monthly cheques. The Prime Minister’s decision to signal his planned pension changes while in Europe last week was partly to remind Canadians of the deep problems European governments are facing because of social programs they can’t afford.

But research prepared at Ottawa’s request argues Canada’s pension system is in far better shape than the Europeans’, and there’s no need to raise the retirement age. Edward Whitehouse – who researches pension policy on behalf of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development and the World Bank – was asked by Ottawa to study and report (external - login to view) on how Canada stacks up internationally when it comes to pensions.

His conclusion: “The analysis suggests that Canada does not face major challenges of financial sustainability with its public pension schemes,” and “there is no pressing financial or fiscal need to increase pension ages in the foreseeable future.”

While other OECD countries face big pension problems, the report predicts Canada will do just fine as the baby boomers retire. That’s because, as Canada heads into the boomer crunch, it spends far less than the OECD average on public pensions. Further, Canada’s relatively high levels of immigration will partially offset the distortions of an aging population, and Canadians tend to save more independently through RRSPs and workplace pensions than Europeans.

The report is one of six that fed into a larger summary paper written by the University of Calgary’s Jack Mintz that reported to federal and provincial finance ministers at a December, 2009, meeting. While this supporting research was overshadowed at the time, it stands in sharp contrast to forceful warnings now coming from the Conservative government.

Mr. Harper repeated his view Monday that Canada’s aging population threatens social programs. “Everybody understands that there are demographic realities that do threaten the viability of these programs over the longer term, and we will make sure that these programs are funded and viable for the future generations that will need them,” he told the House of Commons.

A spokesperson for Human Resources Minister Diane Finley responded to questions about Mr. Whitehouse’s report by pointing to the latest actuary report on the OAS, which stated the cost of the program will nearly triple by 2030.

Ministers refused to provide details of the proposed changes and would only say that current recipients of OAS will not be affected.

The government’s claims leave experts baffled. Thomas Klassen, a York University political science professor who co-authored a 2010 report on Canada’s pension system, said his own research concluded that the OAS program is sustainable.

“I haven’t heard any academic argue that there’s a crisis with OAS, which is why I was surprised a few days ago when the Prime Minister seemed to say there was a crisis,” he said. “Because I don’t know where that came from.”

Prof. Klassen said he suspects the federal government has concluded that reducing OAS costs is an easy way to save money over the long term because it can be done unilaterally without negotiating with the provinces or public-sector unions. “It’s okay to look at Old Age Security pension payments,” he said, “but I think there’s got to be a lot more evidence that there’s a problem, and I don’t see that evidence.”

Kevin Milligan, a University of British Columbia economics professor who co-authored another of the supporting research papers prepared for Ottawa, is also of the view that there is no OAS crisis. He says the government’s use of statistics showing the cost of OAS will climb from $36.5-billion in 2010 to $108-billion in 2030 is not very meaningful because of the impact of inflation. He notes the rise is less alarming when measured as a percentage of economic growth.

“As an economist, I would never characterize things in terms of nominal dollars in the future because it’s hard to put those in context,” he said. “I don’t know what we’ll be paying for a litre of milk then.”

When the House of Commons finance committee studied pension issues in 2010, Mr. Whitehouse appeared as a witness and discussed his research.

“Canada's pension system is looking good on the measures of adequacy. It is also looking good on measures of financial sustainability,” Mr. Whitehouse told MPs. “Canada does not face the same financial sustainability problems as many other OECD member countries do, particularly in Europe and among the East Asian countries, Japan and Korea, whose populations are aging most rapidly.”

At the end of its study, the committee’s final report did not recommend raising the age of eligibility for OAS or reducing benefits. However, a minority report by the committee’s Conservative MPs said payment rates for the OAS and the Guaranteed Income Supplement for seniors should be reviewed.

Research belies PM's warning about OAS - The Globe and Mail


Citing ‘enthusiastic support,’ Tories move to cap pension bill debate

The Conservative government moved Tuesday to limit debate on a pension reform bill that will create new Pooled Retirement Pension Plans.

Government House Leader Peter Van Loan argued the move to invoke a process called “time allocation” was justified because the Conservatives won the last election by campaigning on the need for PRPPs.

He said there is “enthusiastic support” for this new pension option, yet the opposition is focused on delay tactics.

“Why are they so determined to keep Canadians from having that option?” he argued in a special half-hour debate triggered by the motion. “It [time allocation] allows for debate to continue but it ensures we will actually make decisions.”

Mr. Van Loan made the accusations of delay in spite of the fact that the government only opened debate on the bill for the first time Monday.

The opposition NDP and Liberals attacked the move as “a disgrace,” arguing that it marks the 13th time the majority Conservative government has limited debate through time allocation or closure motions.

With the bells calling MPs to vote on the motion, NDP MP Chris Charlton held a hurried news conference to announce that – as opposition whip – she would be refusing to perform her ceremonial duties of walking down the aisle with Mr. Van Loan to kick off the vote as a form of protest.

She said it was “absolutely ridiculous” for the government to move time allocation after one day of debate. Ms. Charlton claimed the move is connected to controversy over Mr. Harper’s speech last week in which he signalled changes were coming to Old Age Security.

“The government has failed Canadian seniors and is now talking about gutting OAS,” she said.

Liberal MP Judy Sgro argued that opposition MPs were also elected and have a right to debate pension reform.

“We were elected and our job is democracy,” she said. “It’s a slap in the face to every Canadian.”

The government motion would limit second reading debate to two more days before a vote would take place to send the bill to committee. It would then be debated at committee, and then again in the House of Commons at report stage and third reading. If passed by the House, the legislation would be debated again in the Senate.

The debate over PRPPs comes as pension reform has suddenly jumped to the top of the political agenda in Ottawa. Prime Minister Stephen Harper surprised many last week by signalling changes are needed to Old Age Security to ensure that it is sustainable.

The federal government has been studying all aspects of Canada’s pension and retirement savings options for several years now. Some of that research noted that many middle-income Canadians are not saving enough to maintain their current standard of living in retirement.

The government argues that PRPPs will help address this by targeting employees of small businesses that do not currently offer workplace pensions. These small businesses would auto-enroll new hires into the system, though workers would have the right to opt out. Federal rules would not force employers to contribute to their workforce PRPPs, though provinces could make such contributions mandatory.

The contributions to PRPPs would be managed by the private sector at “low cost,” but the legislation does not define what low cost will mean in practice.

Citing "enthusiastic support," Tories move to cap pension bill debate - The Globe and Mail
 
dumpthemonarchy
#137
Quote: Originally Posted by coldstreamView Post

The most glaring observation i made about this.. was that a Major Policy Statement was made not before a domestic audience, or a Parliamentary committee.. which would foment a national debate.. but as a 'fait a complis' before this cess pool of rationalizations for the Global trading oligarchs at Davos. Capitulating to its mantra of austerity and free trade.. that has failed utterly in the last 40 years and is leading the world into another Great Depression.
Davos was chosen to purify its codex, and coopt politicians and media from around the world. A secluded, expensive resort.. protected by mountains and accessible by a single road.. it was intended to exclude protest and present a picture of unanimity.. of a gift of the 'wisdom' of the sages of the mountains.. far beyond the ability of the common dregs like ourselves to understand.. and therefor given complete credulity
And this disgraceful little traitor Harper falls for it. He goes hat in hand, bowing and kowtowing to his masters.. an obedient shill for their Global financial tyranny. The stench of malfeasance, ulterior motives, ignorance, arrogance is overwhelming with this guy. I'm hoping there are a few honest people left in the Conservative caucus that will stand up to him. I'm not sure he's completely cleansed the Party of John A. of its patriotism and integrity.. but for the most part they seem to be just as weak and cowardly as he is.

Quote has been trimmed, See full post: View Post
Totally agree.

Harper announces pension changes for people getting less than $20,000 a year, for an event at Davos for the superrich that costs $50,000 per head to attend. Is it the superrich who do most of the investing in Canada? I don't think so.

Years ago Preston Manning said the market should set the minimum wage, that turned me off the Reform Party big time. The grassroots people and the superrich seem to have something in common, and its not money here. A desire to be a foot soldier and take orders from the high and mighty possibly.

Harper seems like a flunky here, and totally unaware of growing inequality and the questioning of capitalism that is going on. What me, worry? Says the small time bean counter.
 
L Gilbert
#138
Well, the problems with the market economy is that gov'ts have not been neutral towards it and speculation tends to have an unwarranted effect on the market economy; sometimes just as much effect as supply & demand. But I wouldn't be presumptuous enough to predict an imminent crash. All it needs is adjustment. It'd help if money actually had a base to support it, too.

Um, is there any specific reason that the rich and super-rich need OAS? Seems silly to me to give multimillionars $540.12 every month.
 
mentalfloss
#139
NDP set to pressure Tories on OAS plans

The NDP is accusing the Harper government of taking advantage of Canada’s seniors to balance its budget and will use its opposition day this week to try to goad Conservatives into revealing its plans to reform Old Age Security.

MPs will debate this motion Thursday: “That this House rejects calls by the Prime Minister to balance the Conservative deficit on the backs of Canada’s seniors by means such as raising the age of eligibility for Old Age Security and calls on the government to make the reduction and eventual elimination of seniors’ poverty a cornerstone of the next budget.”

The opposition parties are allowed a certain number of days in which they can frame the debate and set the agenda in the House of Commons.

This motion, which is to be voted on Monday, is unlikely to pass, given the Conservative majority. However, opposition day debates are always revealing of fault-lines and different positions from the parties.

Since the House returned Monday from its six-week Christmas, the controversy over pensions and reforms has dominated. The NDP is now keeping up the pressure with its opposition day motion.

Lysane Blanchette-Lamothe, the 27-year-old rookie MP from Pierrefonds-Dollard, is introducing the motion. She is the party’s deputy critic for seniors.

It is significant that the NDP has chosen a young person to lead off the debate on Old Age Security. But the speculation is the government is planning to move up the age of eligibility from 65 to 67 years of age – and the NDP wants young people to realize that their future retirement security is tied up in this issue.

In fact, both opposition parties have seized on the fact that there is now uncertainty for baby boomers and even younger Canadians around their retirement.

The Prime Minister touched off this storm of controversy last week in his speech to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Without giving any details, he noted that changes to Canada’s demographics means that some retirement programs may not be sustainable in the future.

Since then, the government has moved to reassure seniors that their OAS benefits will continue. Rather, the Conservatives have said they are looking to mid to long-term changes.

NDP set to pressure Tories on OAS plans - The Globe and Mail
 
L Gilbert
+1
#140
I was wondering about this a few years back when there were rumblings about the healthcare system being over-burdened by boomers. Next thing I know, rumblings about pensions began. The result? We started rearranging our entire financial system for more growth and saving, as opposed to leaning on income and saving. Almost done now and it has had a positive effect. Kind of sad that few people take notice of stuff like this and even fewer act on it.
 
mentalfloss
#141
Why raising OAS to 67 doesn't make sense

Prime Minister Stephen Harper raised eyebrows with a speech last week that fueled speculation he plans to lift the eligibility for Old Age Security to 67 (from 65).

Harper’s argument that deep cuts are required to keep the program afloat deserves closer attention, even though he’s been backpedalling ever since.

I have two points to make:
— There is nothing new in the numbers he quotes about OAS costs rising as baby boomers retire.
— There are ways to reduce costs that won’t incense Opposition parties and organized seniors’ groups.

Let’s start with the statistics, which show that taxpaid pensions for people over 65 will triple to $108 billion by 2030 (from $35.6 billion in 2010).

The Conservative government seems spooked by this figure. But why should it be?

When looked at in the context of Canada’s growing economy, the cost of supporting the demographic bulge is not nearly as scary. As a percentage of our gross domestic product, Old Age Security will rise to 3.1 per cent by 2030 (from 2.3 per cent in 2010) — before declining again after the boomers retire.

These statistics have been well-known and analyzed for many years.


“I’m mystified. Why talk about it now?” says Malcolm Hamilton, an actuary at Mercer Consulting, who’s been following the debate for years. “I’m looking at numbers and projections that I’ve been looking at for over a quarter of a century — without anyone in government saying there was an unmanageable problem.”

With lower fertility rates, one in three Canadians will be retired by 2030. Again, that’s old news.

“It’s always been known that costs would escalate,” Hamilton emphasizes. “Canadians have been led to believe this would be taken care of. Governments would absorb the costs or find economies elsewhere. They should have said something earlier if they had concerns.

“You can’t let people cruise up to retirement age without getting benefits they counted upon. It’s a little late to decide the system is unsustainable.”

And why did Harper increase the guaranteed income supplement (topping up OAS for low-income seniors) in his last budget without hinting that public pensions were under threat? That’s what Hamilton wants to know.

It’s clear the Conservatives are ideologically opposed to raising taxes. If they want to reform Old Age Security to spend money elsewhere, they can do so in other ways without making people wait two years to collect.


I asked a few observers for ideas about reducing the cost that wouldn’t pinch as hard as raising the eligibility age.

Here’s what they said:

Change the inflation indexing of OAS payments.

The OAS rates are adjusted every three months, while other program rates are adjusted once a year. Canada Pension Plan, for example, has only annual indexing.

“While inflation has been low, it had a spike last year. Over a period of time, this change will add up to a fair amount,” says Gordon Pape, author of a new book about retirement realities.

Change the way that OAS payments are taxed back.

Affluent seniors with an individual income of $69,562 have to repay some of their benefits. They lose all their benefits with net income of $112,772. “You can up the clawback rate — start it earlier or phase it out faster,” says John Stapleton, a retired public servant with an interest in social welfare.

“You can also disallow the phony deductions, such as the deductions for flow-through shares only available to well-to-do investors.”

Stop indexing the clawback income levels.

Conservative Finance Minister Michael Wilson didn’t index income levels when he brought in the OAS clawback in the 1990s, says Pape. Only when Jean Chretien’s Liberal government took power later was a change introduced to let the maximum income levels rise with inflation.

Lowering clawback levels or removing indexing on clawback thresholds won’t hurt as many people as raising the age to 67, says Jim Yih, a retirement blogger and consultant.

“If you take away two years of OAS, that’s $12,200 from every Canadian over the age of 65,” he says. “Before the government cuts the retirement income of taxpayers, they had better cut back on their overly lucrative gold-plated pensions first.”

Old Age Security, unlike CPP, is a means-tested program. It favours those without resources over those who have saved for retirement.

If changes are needed — and not everyone agrees they are — the government should tinker with the way it taxes back the OAS benefits instead of making across-the board cuts.


Why raising OAS to 67 doesn't make sense - Moneyville.ca (external - login to view)
Last edited by mentalfloss; Feb 1st, 2012 at 11:34 AM..
 
Durry
#142
Anyone who has to depend on OAS to retire, then that person is not ready to retire. He/she should be working until they can retire without having to rely totally on OAS!
Furthermore, the rules for those accessing GIS, should be changed, maybe even eliminated ..

Quote from above;
Affluent seniors with an individual income of $69,562 have to repay some of their benefits. They lose all their benefits with net income of $112,772.

My comment;
This is incorrect. Affluent seniors do not lose these funds, these funds are scooped up by Revenue Canada and the scooped up amount shows up in your T4(OAS) as Taxes paid..
 
mentalfloss
#143
Quote: Originally Posted by DurryView Post

Quote from above;
Affluent seniors with an individual income of $69,562 have to repay some of their benefits. They lose all their benefits with net income of $112,772.

My comment;
This is incorrect. Affluent seniors do not lose these funds, these funds are scooped up by Revenue Canada and the scooped up amount shows up in your T4(OAS) as Taxes paid..

There are numerous articles confirming OAS benefits depend on the level of income. Is there something from Revenue Canada which shows otherwise?
 
Durry
#144
Quote: Originally Posted by mentalflossView Post

There are numerous articles confirming OAS benefits depend on the level of income. Is there something from Revenue Canada which shows otherwise?

Yes, the amount of OAS that one receives during the year is dependant on income, but the amount that is clawed back goes to Revenue Canada and shows up as Tax paid.
Ask any Charted Acct.!!
I know because in my spare time I help some affluent seniors do their tax return on my computer!!
 
mentalfloss
+1
#145
Quote: Originally Posted by DurryView Post

Yes, the amount of OAS that one receives during the year is dependant on income, but the amount that is clawed back goes to Revenue Canada and shows up as Tax paid.
Ask any Charted Acct.!!
I know because in my spare time I help some affluent seniors do their tax return on my computer!!

None of this contradicts anything the article has stated or that raising the age from 65 to 67 is the best idea right now.
 
JLM
+1
#146
Quote: Originally Posted by DurryView Post

Anyone who has to depend on OAS to retire, then that person is not ready to retire. He/she should be working until they can retire without having to rely totally on OAS!
..

People wear out after awhile!
 
relic
+1
#147
HEY !! LOOK OVER HERE !!
while you'er looking over here {at some bs about old folks eating dog food}a lovely pipeline goes over there because the govt changed he rules and now they don't need an envioronmental study.bazinga !
 
Dixie Cup
+1
#148
I'm all for a review of pensions, ESPECIALLY MP ones. The way they are designed now is totally illigel in the private sector. If anyone can get it done it's Harper but it ain't gonna be easy. Something needs to be done if our younger generation is to benefit. That's the problem with providing all kinds of social benefits by governments- when you can't afford them anymore its pure hell to downsize or get rid of them. People actually feel entitled!!

I would much rather there be less benefits, lower taxes and easier ways for individuals to save for their future. That's what I've been striving to do and it ain't easy, that's for sure!!

JMHO
 
mentalfloss
#149
Old Age Security change would hurt seniors, Rae says
OAS reforms would start 'domino effect,' Liberal leader says

Any possible change to Old Age Security would have a dramatic domino effect on other social programs and income supplements, interim Liberal Leader Bob Rae said Wednesday.

Speaking after a weekly caucus meeting with Liberal MPs, Rae said seniors also apply for the Guaranteed Income Supplement and social programs offered by provinces based on Old Age Security. The GIS goes to poor seniors to try to bring their income up to the poverty line.

"What Mr. Harper is doing is starting a domino effect which downloads on seniors, downloads on poor seniors, downloads on provinces, downloads on municipalities and has a much more dramatic effect than what he's pretending," Rae said Wednesday.

Any cut to retirement income would be contrary to a promise not to cut transfers to the provinces or to people, he said.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper mentioned in a speech in Davos, Switzerland, last Thursday that he wants to look at retirement income and make sure it's sustainable in the future. His office says while there are four taxpayers for every senior in Canada right now, by 2030 there will be two taxpayers for every senior.

On Monday in the House of Commons, he said he won't cut Old Age Security. All Conservative MPs who responded to a question on retirement income said they would look at ways to make it sustainable and that no cuts to be made would affect anyone now collecting or soon to collect OAS.

In question period Wednesday, Harper said the government will protect seniors now and those who will be seniors in the future.

"A senior will not lose a single penny, nor one near retirement. But we're dealing with those people far off in the future who are very worried about their income security because they understand the pressure the system is under," he said.

Opposition MPs are maintaining pressure on the government over the possibility of OAS cuts, but so far there's little information on what exactly any changes might entail.

Rae said there wasn't anyone in the audience at the World Economic Forum in Davos, a conference of world leaders and business elite, who has to worry about the GIS or old age pensions.

"If they’re not going to do anything, then what was that discourse from the alpine perch about? What was that? Was that just trying to make a bunch of people in the audience happy?" he said.

"Do we know exactly what those changes are? No. I don’t know.… To go to Switzerland and make an announcement about pensions and not have a followup is, frankly, preposterous."

Old Age Security change would hurt seniors, Rae says - Canada - CBC News
 
Cannuck
+1
#150
Facts about government expenditures

11% - Debt charges
29% - Program expenses
60% - Transfers

Transfers to individuals accounts for 25% of all government expenditures with over half of that going to seniors. Transfers to provinces account for 21% of all funds. Transfers to other organizations (aboriginals, foreign aid, farm aid) account for 14 %. Clearly, cutting handouts and moving people away from the trough is the only reasonable option unless you believe in taxing more.

Cutting programs and axing civil servant is always popular but the reality is that it doesn't save much. Even draconian cuts to the civil service would only save 2-3%. Defense and public safety (RCMP, prisons, border security) account for over 1/3 of program spending.

I do find it amusing that people want the government to cut but next to nobody wants the government to cut their entitlements.
 

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