On March 10, The Aldergrove Star printed the political column by Tom Fletcher on how to help the poor in Canada. Much of this article quoted Dr. Ralph Sultan who was a senior executive with the Royal Bank for 10 years and is now a Liberal MLA for West Vancouver – an area not known for significant poverty.
It is true that single mothers and on-reserve aboriginals are at the bottom of the steep ‘income pyramid’ in Canada but there are far too many ‘working-poor’ who are struggling to just get by.
Right-wing columnist, Fletcher also makes approving reference to another Harvard author who glibly includes the work ethic and private property rights as major factors in the success of Western civilization. An independent study of history shows that the West has accumulated most of its ‘capital’ by seizing the lands, labour and resources of poor people from all over the world for over 500 years: “guns and greed” offers a far more honest explanation for our “success.”
There are two major political changes that would rapidly eliminate poverty in Canada: dramatically increasing the minimum wage (say to $18 per hour as in Australia) and greatly increasing the income taxes on large corporations and wealthy individuals, with the proceeds ‘given’ to the poorest citizens.
Yes, Tom we can pass a few laws and “everybody will get a lot less poorer quickly” – except for the rich who will always scream to increase their own ‘pots of gold’, which are never big enough for them.
Dr. H. Spencer, Aldergrove