Some More Examples

These are all culled from our friends the provincial conservatives of Ontario. As in the graph above, the idea is to prove "tax cuts create jobs".

*   Compared to September of 1995, more than 640,000 more people are working in Ontario. This is about half of the new jobs created in Canada -- substantially greater than Ontario’s share of Canada’s population.

It looks like we've made a net gain in jobs. I wonder what the increase in population was in those four years? What about the next line: "This is about half the new jobs created in Canada, substantially greater than Ontario's share of Canada's population." Well, Canada has around 25 million, 11 million of whom live in Ontario. So that's 50% of the jobs, on 44% of the population. When you consider that Ontario is Canada's most industrialized province, and that Toronto is in Ontario, you see that this is not even close to a proof that the tax cuts had any effect at all on unemployment.

*   Employment has grown faster in Ontario than in the rest of Canada since 1995. On average, other provinces experienced an 8.8 per cent increase in employment since 1995, while Ontario has benefitted from a 12.3 per cent increase in employment.

"On average, other provinces experienced an 8.8 per cent increase… while Ontario has benefitted from a 12.3 per cent increase." Hmm… could it be that including small provinces with really low 'per cent increases in employment' has made the average for all the provinces lower, compared to Ontario's stellar average? I'd like to see each province's 'average', and each province's 'income tax as percent of basic federal tax', at least!

What is 'per cent increase in employment' anyway? If we had 70% employment before, does that mean 82.3% now? Does that mean the employed as a percentage of the workforce, the people who want to work, or the employed as a percentage of the whole population? Of course it doesn't tell you. Have they got something to hide?

And maybe employment grows faster in Ontario under any circumstances.

*   Ontario’s Real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew by 17.4 per cent between 1995 and 1999, compared to 9.3 per cent for the rest of Canada.

Again, this doesn't necessarily have anything to do with taxes. And anyway is GDP growth a good thing? It seems like these folks think it is, but I'm not convinced.

*   On average, Ontario’s Real GDP between 1995 and 1999 grew by an annual rate of 4.1 per cent -- almost two percentage points higher than the rest of Canada (2.3 per cent) over the same period.


*   Since 1995, Ontario’s housing starts have soared by 187 per cent -- far exceeding the 24.2 per cent increase in other provinces.

I like it when things 'soar' by more than 100%. It's very exciting-- and quite meaningless. Going from 50 to 200 is an increase of 300%. Is there a good reason for not showing us the numbers?

*   Ontario’s consumer spending is also leading the nation. Ontario’s retail sales have increased 26.5 per cent since 1995, compared to a gain of 20.9 per cent in the rest of Canada.

So Ontario's retail sales are about 5 percent higher than in the rest of Canada, on average, over four years. Wow. Who's buying the stuff? Who's selling it? 

Notice the statistics that aren't here. Unemployment rates, average incomes, income distributions, wealth, tuition, etc. etc.

Notice also that every one of the items on this bulleted list could be explained by any number of things.



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