Kenney’s proposed corporate tax cuts are “snake oil” that will make our economy sicker, not healthier

AFL releases links to 75 articles illustrating the folly of “trickle down” policies, including Trump’s failed tax plan

EDMONTON – The record from around the world shows that Jason Kenney’s plan to give tax breaks to corporations is more likely to slow the Alberta economy than “re-ignite” it, says the president of Alberta’s largest worker advocacy organization.

“Right-wingers have been saying for years that tax breaks for their wealthy friends will lead to higher investment, higher wages and higher growth. They even claim that they will pay for themselves,” says Gil McGowan, president of the Alberta Federation of Labour.

“But this has literally never happened anywhere. This approach has been called trickle-down economics. But it should really be called snake-oil economics. It’s a false cure that makes the patient sicker, not healthier. Jason Kenney is pedaling economic snake oil and, for the sake of our jobs and our economy, Albertans should refuse to swallow it.”

To back up his point, McGowan released a list of 75 articles and studies illustrating how “trickle-down” policies have failed in jurisdictions around the world, including Australia and American states like Kansas, Oklahoma, Arizona, and Kentucky. He also included links to articles showing how Donald Trump’s recent corporate tax cuts have failed to lead to economic growth and have, instead, only benefited the wealthy and led to sky-rocketing federal deficits.

Nobel laureate in economics Paul Krugman probably summed it up best when he wrote the following in the New York Times earlier this year:

“Republicans almost universally advocate low taxes on the wealthy, based on the claim that tax cuts at the top will have huge beneficial effects on the economy. This claim rests on research by … well, nobody. There isn’t any body of serious work supporting G.O.P. tax ideas, because the evidence is overwhelmingly against those ideas.

McGowan points out that even former Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall, long a darling of Canadian Conservatives, backed away from his promise to lower corporate tax rates when he realized that it would blow a hole in his government’s budget.

“And Wall was only proposing to cut corporate taxes by 1 percent point. Kenney wants to cut taxes for profitable corporations by a whopping 33 percent,” said McGowan. “And for what? It will almost certainly have zero impact on economic growth. So, we’d be tying ourselves to bigger deficits and big cuts to public services for nothing. We simply can’t afford to ignore the lessons of places like Kansas and Oklahoma.”

Media Contact:

Ramona Franson, Director of Communications

rfranson@afl.org

Link: 75 articles, studies and videos debunking so-called “trickle-down” economics


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