HELP! I am trying to bring an additional $350 million+/yr to Canada's public healthcare system

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Murlev
HELP! I am trying to bring an additional $350 million+/yr to Canada's public healthcare system

No joke! Alberta and New Brunswick hospitals pay no GST. The hospitals of all of the other provinces do and get back as much as 83%. Two of my petitions have been tabled in the House of Commons and I can use a few thousand Canadians writing to the Min. of Finance in support.

I have a blog re this  www.nogst.wordpress.com How do I get it disseminated?

 

Thanks for your suggestions.

G. Muffin

Well, for a start ... you could stop spending $800 a day to keep me separated from my human rights.

G. Muffin

I have no opinion to state because I don't understand the problem.  To whom should hospitals pay GST?  On what goods or services? They are the government.  Should they pay themselves a 5% premium?  It's no stupider than anything I've seen recently on CNN.

Murlev

The hospitals in 2 of 10 provinces pay no GST on anything. There is an anomaly that has the hospitals in Alberta and New Brunswick GST exempt, but the hospitals everywhere else pay the GST on their purchases/provided services. Only the hospitals of AB and NB are considered extensions of the govt., and one level of govt. may not tax another level of govt., according to Canadian constitutional law. Municipalities are GST exempt for this reason

Fidel

I think we should just split Canada into twelve separate autonomous oblasts, and let US and other suprantaional corporate raiders tempt our designated leaders and stooges with bribes and kick-back to ply our resources and energy from democratic ownership and control. Canada was a nice idea, but I think we could become a prosperous 51st US state but unlike the 39 or so bankrupt ones dowth thataway. Because the giveaways and selloffs of our environmental and labour rights since FTA-NAFTA just isn't doing it. And so since it hasn't worked out so well, then maybe, just maybe we need to cede even more control of our resources and energy policies to corporate America to truly experience the raw power of free market voodoo amounting to so much colonization of Bananada. I don't know though. It could just be that my zaney idea has never really been tried before with the same kind of gung-ho leave it to the market attitude. One of our own keepers of the ring prancing around the upper decks should dare to be a dictator like old Boris didnt have the stones for in 1990's Russia. It's all good.

G. Muffin

The great thing about having a friend like Fidel is nobody would dare steal his password.  He's the most unique writer on babble.  I salute you, Fidel.

G. Muffin

Murlev wrote:
The hospitals in 2 of 10 provinces pay no GST on anything. There is an anomaly that has the hospitals in Alberta and New Brunswick GST exempt, but the hospitals everywhere else pay the GST on their purchases/provided services. Only the hospitals of AB and NB are considered extensions of the govt., and one level of govt. may not tax another level of govt., according to Canadian constitutional law. Municipalities are GST exempt for this reason

I just can't get excited about this.  Sorry.  What about GST on cancellation charges from Telus?  Moral?  Immoral?  Ethical?  Good? Bad? WHO gives a shit?  Not I.

Fidel

But I agree with, and in a half-assed sort of way, our frugal friend. We're already taxed way too much in Canada as it is for what we receive in public services. Alberta has already been in the business of asking the Feds for money back that they didn't collect in provincial sales taxes, and they still have one of the highest costs of living in all of Bananada. They're only going to shovel billions to profitable banks in the form of interest payments on ridiculous debts which those two parties sunk us in the hole for anyway. Or they'll dole it out to profitable fossil fuel and other supranationals in paying them to steal even more of our stuff. I think we should have a tax rebellion and lose these frickafracks and fiscal Frankensteins in sn'Ottawa for all time. But that's just me.

Murlev

What does all of this have to do with the question that I asked?

Fidel

I think it would be wonderful if privately run hospital foundations were to spend any extra money on medical equipment(and even a doctor, full-time nurses, and other frontline care workers) and not pay raises for their own fat-cat administrative staff.

G. Muffin

Murlev wrote:
What does all of this have to do with the question that I asked?

Excellent question.  Fidel, you heard the man.  Answer him.

G. Muffin

Fidel wrote:
I think it would be wonderful if privately run hospital foundations were to spend any extra money on medical equipment(and even a doctor, full-time nurses, and other frontline care workers) and not pay raises for their own fat-cat administrative staff.

Fidel, give your head a shake.  Do you really want a herd of "fat-cat administrative staff" knocking on UI's door?  I think not.  

Murlev

The trouble is that there are not enough doctors, nurses, physios, ots etc in the pipeline to feed the medical needs of an aging population. (Incidentally my wife is a "fat cat hospital administrator" and with the attitudes of me-me generation and having a burn-outs while prev generations did not, there will be big problems if they do not grow up.)

 

That being said, Facebook is a way to get the message out. I welcome suggestions regarding other ways that vis the www this can be done.

 

Moucho thanks!

G. Muffin

Murlev wrote:
The trouble is that there are not enough doctors, nurses, physios, ots etc in the pipeline to feed the medical needs of an aging population.

I disagree.  The problem is that doctors are insisting that they, and only they, hold the reins.  Since I'm typing this on a psych ward, I'll use the parallel that maximum healing is between patients, next best is with nurses and social workers.  All the way down at the bottom of the list are the shrinks. Doctors just love being the gatekeeper to pain relief.  We have more than enough money to ensure everybody gets decent mental, dental and physical care.  

If you want it.

Murlev

I am not an expert in anything. I generally get my information from "the highest authority". My wife is an expert in all things and is an authority on hospital budgets, staffing and other areas that I know very little about.

There is a disparity in the system and my goal is simply to correct it. What advice can you offer as an activist  to  solve the problem?

Incidentally, it is of interest to note that the Chairman of one of the largest hospitals in the country is a Senator, who was appointed by the Conservatives. I asked him to speak to the Minister and he ignored me.

 

This brings to mind something that happened yrs ago. I had asked a major newspaper to emulate another major newspaper's Xmas fund and I was essentially told to buzz off.

I sent a fax to the secretary of the publisher. Her boss was/is a Companion of the Order of Canada. In the fax I mentioned (among other things) that I was going to contact the Governor General (Romeo Leblanc) and inquire about having the CC thrown out of the Order.

 

The CC called me up the next day. :o)

 

I actually accomplished more than I set out to do with that effort. My guess is that the result was about $6 million/yr for charity.

 

Before I start making examples of people and burning bridges I am looking for input as to how I can accomplish the goal.

 

 

Le T Le T's picture

Quote:
Before I start making examples of people and burning bridges I am looking for input as to how I can accomplish the goal.

 

So you want us to help you do what you think is best? So far you have ignored the feedback of someone who has intimate personal experience with the crap services that hospitals provide. You blame the "me-me" generation for "not growing up" - as if it is someone elses problem to fix the healthcare system that people like your wife have run into the ground. And the solution you offer is begging politicians to exempt hospitals from GST? Sorry if people are a little uninspired by you liberal do-gooder white knight thing.

G. Muffin

Murlev wrote:
There is a disparity in the system and my goal is simply to correct it. What advice can you offer as an activist  to  solve the problem?

Repeal the Mental Health Act.  It offends the Charter and, more importantly, it offends G. Pie.

Tommy_Paine

 

I think Murlev has chosen a good time to put this forward.  McGinty and others might want to do this to soften the political blow of the harmonized GST/PST.  A crumb from the table.

However, I'm with Fidel to some extent.  Without strings that require hospitals to use that saving towards real front line health care, and not, say, to hide yet another senior civil servants pay by fraudulantly hiding it in their budgets, kinda jades me a bit, Murlev.

Murlev

After reading Le T's comment, I can only respond with:

"Beam me up Scotty." Wink

 

Fidel

This is typical of the neoliberal ideology in general. The new liberal economy tends to produce a bit of money for new equipment in various sectors of the economy. The idea is that new equipment will increase productivity in this or that area. But when it comes to investing in people able to use the new equipment, suddenly there is no money for education. There are big salaries for administrative and management positions. These are the people who ideologues believe can produce the most with the least human resources available. But they should not be without the latest equipment for as few workers to be educated and trained to use.

 Economist Dean Baker explains the way it is in his country http://conservativenannystate.org, and I think a lot of it applies to the Canadian situation as far as protecting jobs for the upper crust goes and especiall where he mentions NAFTA. Doctors in North America probably have some of the most powerful unions when it comes to protecting jobs designated for the middle-upper class and those they depend on to believe in and support their crony capitalist system. 

Murlev

Meanwhile I am still waiting for the advice that I originally asked for.

 

I guess that I will have to stand on Parliament Hill wearing a bra and panties in -40 temp in order to have the Govt of Canada rectify the inequity. At least my pecker and nipples will be warm.

abnormal

Murlev, I don't understand.  What benefit do the hospitals in question get from paying GST - all that would mean is that a significant chunk of taxpayer dollars would flow from the hospital to the Feds with no guarantee that any part of it would make it back into the healthcare system.  And even if it did, given the various frictional charges along the way you'd see less cash coming out of the system that went in (and what's left over wouldn't end up with the hospitals that paid the tax).  Unless I'm missing something the hospitals would end up with less cash, not more.

Murlev

abnormal wrote:

Murlev, I don't understand.  What benefit do the hospitals in question get from paying GST -

 

That is the point. They are paying the GST and they should not be paying any sales taxes on their purchases.

 

I am the past-President of a non profit in the US(NY). The org is sales tax exempt in NY, as should hospitals be in Canada

Le T Le T's picture

Quote:
After reading Le T's comment, I can only respond with:

"Beam me up Scotty."

You don't even need Scotty or the Enterprise to leave babble and all us wack-jobs. Why is it that the "past-President of a non-profit" who has a wife in the upper echelons of health care "management" needs us to help with his super cool campaign?

My guess it that you are not asking for help. You are looking for signatures, warm bodies, or nodding heads to support your personal campaign that fails to address the real problems of heathcare in this country. In doing so you even managed to smear all of us and drop some agist comments. I love you, you're awesome! Please keep us posted on your future campaigns! Frown

 

 

Murlev

Dear Le T,

 

There is hope for everyone, including you!

 

I can see that this is not the proper forum at all to get some intelligent input.

 

Cheers!

Le T Le T's picture

Dear Murlev,

Please stop being so condescending. It really pisses me off.

 

Cheers!

Murlev

Le T wrote:

Dear Murlev,

Please stop being so condescending. It really pisses me off.

 

Cheers!

 

SmileSmileSmileLaughingWink

Fidel

If someone could point us to examples of better health care in Alberta as a result, it would be good. Check the water for boulders and logs before diving in, like someone always says.

Murlev

Thanks Fidel,

 

I wrote to Cossette (PR Firm) and hopefully they will assist.

 

Happy holidays!

 

ML

G. Muffin

Fidel wrote:
If someone could point us to examples of better health care in Alberta as a result, it would be good. Check the water for boulders and logs before diving in, like someone always says.

Alberta's Mental Health Act is slightly less draconian than BC's.  That's all I got.

Murlev

Someone above asked to be kept abreast of future campaigns. Here are 2 current ones: http://www.change.org/en-CA/petitions/david-labistour-ceo-the-mountain-e...

http://foodbanks.wordpress.com/

 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Food banks are merely band-aids on top of the deep wounds that globalization is inflicting on our society.  We don't need more band-aids we need to take the axe being wielded by the 0.1% and start chopping away at them and theirs.

Murlev

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Food banks are merely band-aids on top of the deep wounds that globalization is inflicting on our society.  We don't need more band-aids we need to take the axe being wielded by the 0.1% and start chopping away at them and theirs.

The only problem with that is they take their $$$ offshore and end up paying nothing at all in taxes here.

outdoor-enthusiast

How about sharing as much information as you can for leading a healthy lifestyle that reduces the demand for healthcare in the first place? Isn't this the lowest hanging fruit? Much easier to improve the health of the average Canadian, than to train a new heart surgeon. Generally, a healthier lifestyle means using less gasoline, and consuming simpler, less processed, and therefore more likely locally produced food.

Seems to this simple minded fellow a better solution than playing tax gymnastics. That is, if health is the real goal.

Sineed

I agree, outdoor enthusiast. People need more support for adopting healthy lifestyles. For instance, I support a "sin tax" on junk food, and the provision of places to exercise in workplaces. My workplace had a "yoga at noon" program going for a while as a fitness initiative.

Other ideas: more rational urban planning such that there is an end to "food deserts" in cities, where people end up buying junk food because there are no grocery stores within a reasonable distance.

Also: free sports programs for children in low-income families. More health education for kids. No pop machines in schools. Healthy lunches in schools.

Just a few ideas off the top of my head with which folks may or may not agree. My main point is, as progressives we need to argue against the notion that a healthy lifestyle is nothing more than a personal responsibility.

Bacchus

I do think the definition of food desert needs redoing a bit. It was definied as any place where you have to go farther for real groceries than you would for junk food. But if the closest store to me is a 7-11 with junk food but if I go two blocks more theres a regular full grocery store, Im in a food desert. That one doesnt make sense.

 

Having said that however, Ive seen many real food deserts  downtown

Sineed

I haven't heard a definition that was written in stone; I just heard "food desert" in reference to places where there's junk food close by but a grocery store is a 20-minute bus ride.

Not sure if I agree that there's food deserts downtown, since we downtown dwellers have access to cheap and readily-accessible take-out that's also healthy (Ali Baba's!), unlike the KFC/McDonalds crap that's in every poor neighbourhood. And there may not be so many supermarkets, but there's all those fruit stands everywhere that also sell a small selection of dry goods and Mr Goudas canned beans.

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

Gah? Do u really care about health? I'd like to think so...And have a Plan to get there>...Doubt it...

outdoor-enthusiast

The real education that is needed, I believe, is knowing when/how to choose between instant gratification, and longer term benefits. This applies to food choices - opening a bag of chips versus making a healthy snack, or playing a video game versus going to for a run or bike ride. A consistent message of having the fortitude, having the self discipline to choose the long term benefit behavior versus the instant gratification behavior seems like the answer. Fostering self discipline seems like a lighter weight choice for society rather than heavier weight taxation, legislation and regulation. Knowledge of what is best to eat can go unused unless coupled with the motivaton and self-discipline to act on that knowledge amidst a sea of easier but poorer choices. My two cents.

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

You gotta go camping with me....

Sineed

Outdoor enthusiast wrote:
A consistent message of having the fortitude, having the self discipline to choose the long term benefit behavior versus the instant gratification behavior seems like the answer. Fostering self discipline seems like a lighter weight choice for society rather than heavier weight taxation, legislation and regulation.

I agree with this on the face of it, though when you look at the epidemic of obesity in the US, seems that there must be broad social issues that are causing that; problems that are much bigger than just the self-discipline of individual Americans. Obese Americans are the descendents of thin europeans, asians and africans after all.