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JimD
03-22-2018, 05:03 PM
Here's why we pay more for everything in Canada — and always will



Part of being a Canadian – along with telling each other at dinner parties how compassionate and lucky we are – involves gazing at computer screens, morosely taking in the dazzling choice and competition-driven prices in the American consumer marketplace.In the old, pre-internet days, Canadian consumers didn't realize the extent to which they were being hosed, and the business sector could collude in peace, and the government could collect taxes and protectionist duties to its heart's content without disturbing the bovine quiescence of the consuming public.
Now, though, it's in your face every time you Google a price for something you need: consumer life on the other side of that high border customs wall, the one topped with the Canadian-installed concertina wire and guarded by ferocious uniformed tax collectors, has the unattainable allure of the Tuscan countryside. You can visit it, but you can't live it.
Your own government won't let you. Because Canada...

Jobs

This is the big one. According to a study (https://www.retailcouncil.org/sites/default/files/Rise_in_Canada_de_minimis_threshold.pdf) by PricewaterhouseCoopers, commissioned by the RCC, the Canadian retail sector "generates and facilitates" almost 3.4 million jobs.
That many of those jobs exist because of protectionism is beside the point; they are facts on the ground. The report estimates that raising the de minimis to $200 US – just a quarter of the level Trump is demanding – would shift about $70 billion worth of Canadian purchases a year to the U.S., and wipe out 286,000 jobs within three years.
That's about all the government needs to hear...

So what to do?
Well, that depends on whether you want Canada to remain sealed off from the largest, deepest, richest economy in human history, and how much you're willing to pay for that isolation.
Because the cost is all the foregoing data, flipped around.
The sensible solution is more integration with the U.S. economy – a great deal more. A customs union, and perhaps a currency union, too, and if that means giving up our pretty polymer money, well, fine and dandy. European nations did. And anyway, physical cash is being replaced by digital money. I'm even fine with using the U.S. dollar; yes, yes, we would lose control of our monetary policy, but reality forces our central bank to track the Fed's anyway...

But I suspect that is hardly the majority view.
In the here and now, in Canada as it is, the Retail Council is correct. Raising the de minimis would be a savage disruption. And Canadians aren't big on creative destruction or competition theory.
Which is why the Trudeau government hasn't the faintest intention of raising our de minimis.
The more Canadian solution would be to block consumers here from being able to see all those lower prices on U.S. websites. You know, for our own good.
Some companies, I notice, do that already.

Apparently, being Canadian is very expensive, eh?

http://www.cbc.ca/news/opinion/canadian-consumers-1.4586668?cmp=FB_Post_News

cathouse willy
03-22-2018, 05:28 PM
"Apparently, being Canadian is very expensive, eh?"

And worth EVERY penny.

JimD
03-22-2018, 05:32 PM
And worth EVERY penny.

Y>Y>

Flying Orca
03-22-2018, 06:00 PM
"Apparently, being Canadian is very expensive, eh?"

And worth EVERY penny.

Damn skippy. I won't even set foot in the USA anymore, let alone exercise what they think is my right to move back there.

JimD
03-22-2018, 06:13 PM
Damn skippy. I won't even set foot in the USA anymore, let alone exercise what they think is my right to move back there.Not even to shop? Just think of the deal you could get on a tv. I know you're dying to watch one again.

Gib Etheridge
03-22-2018, 07:01 PM
"The Retail Council of Canada wants things to remain as they are, preferably forever."

So do I. The idea of integration is so absurd and repulsive that I cannot help but think that the article must be satirical. Just let the parasitic buggers get a foot in the door and watch the quality of life deteriorate at an alarming rate. The less Canada needs to deal with Amerika the better.

john welsford
03-22-2018, 07:17 PM
Currency union? No more loonies or toonies? Unthinkable.

John Welsford

Flying Orca
03-22-2018, 07:37 PM
Not even to shop? Just think of the deal you could get on a tv. I know you're dying to watch one again.

Heh. I do actually own one, but it's my computer and Blu-Ray monitor.

Oystagirl actually decided we were going to get cable TV when she was going through chemo, because she knew there would be days when she didn't even feel up to reading. We haven't ditched it, but apart from an aborted attempt to watch a Jets game (I couldn't stand more than one period of advertising), I haven't used it.

TomF
03-22-2018, 07:44 PM
"Apparently, being Canadian is very expensive, eh?"

And worth EVERY penny.
Priceless.

Steve McMahon
03-22-2018, 08:00 PM
Damn skippy. I won't even set foot in the USA anymore, let alone exercise what they think is my right to move back there.
Indeed. I’ve turned down a number of chances to go for “business” trips recently, Tampa and Houston. Too friggin hot for this guy, in more ways than one.