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Good Le Devoir piece ponders whether the uprising is a generation gap, a left/right split or what.
Ephraim, ant6n, Robert H, and 3 others are discussing. Toggle Comments
left/right, not really the issue. Its about boomers cashing out with their pensions and healthcare, while hacking every program that made life a little more affordable, leaving us with a huge-ass debt and telling us to tighten our belts so they can continue to enjoy their high standards.
In the end young people who can leave, will. I mean who wants to stick around and have most of their taxes go to paying pensions when you probably wont get one yourself?
Leave? The trend you describe isn’t limited to Quebec, it’s endemic. It’s not like there’s a new New World for them to go to.
Don’t kid yourself, this isn’t a young/poor thing, this is a class thing. It’s like how the union busters used to use race to divide workers. The conflict is not generational, racial, or linguistic – it’s class struggle. The 1% feeds us talking points through their puppet media like generational divides to distract us from the real issues of economic disparity. Production is up year over year, decade over decade… and somehow there’s no money to make big business pay its taxes, to reign in the rapacity of the banking system, or to tackle corruption, waste and duplication in government… Sure, OUR pensions are being delayed and cut, but do you think that’s happening to MPs? Sure, OUR tuitions are being raised, but do you think the children of bankers worry about how to pay for school? Sure OUR health services are being reduced, but the 1% go to private clinics. It’s not young vs. old, it’s the 1% robbing the 99% of the economic wealth of the 20th century. That many of the 1% are older is irrelevant – you don’t get promoted to the 1% as you age.
Ian, that’s a great analysis.
Instead of protecting people from this trend, our governments are complicit in it. And even if they don’t have an articulate analysis of this situation, people are beginning to feel angry about constantly being told we are the ones at fault, for not working hard enough, not saving enough, not being passively accepting of the constant withdrawal of services WE HAVE ALREADY PAID FOR via our high Quebec taxes.
A think this is more a “Two Concepts of Liberty” sort of thing than anything else.
Remember, keeping tuition low means that Desmarais, Peladeau and Saputo pay these low tuition as well, it’s a subsidy of the rich. Bursaries and needs based scholarships help those who are most vulnerable.
Maybe the question we need to ask is how do we subsidized education and ensure that people stay and become tax paying citizens? Maybe the fight should be for more bursaries, more scholarships and certainly for deferred tax deductions. Certainly the tax credit in 5 years is worth more than immediately.
Again, you’re wrong. Having people pay a flat user fee is regressive. The bursaries you mention only affect a relatively small portion of society, whereas taxes are not only relative to income for everybody – they are also progressive. The real subsidy to the rich is lowering taxes while dismantling social programs. So let taxes pay education, and let students pay back their tuition via their taxes. Additionally, having education paid by taxes means childless families support families, which they should, given that the children of today will pay everybody’s pensions tomorrow.
Hah! Ian, j’aimerais vous envoyer au Parlement et à L’Assemblée Nationale où je voudrais que vous répétez ce que vous avez dit ici. Il serait un discours le plus court mais le plus perspicace quon y ait entendu depuis assez longtemps!
@ant6n Again, you are wrong because you make ASSUMPTIONS and you don’t read. I said that flat user fees were regressive, that’s exactly my point. That’s the point of saying that subsidies don’t work. But the same is true of free, it doesn’t work either. Need proof? What are the top schools in this province? Any of them free? No one appreciates what they get for FREE unless they get if for free when others are paying for it.
So the whole idea of having society pick up the bill… doesn’t work. You can jump up and down, do cartwheels or even hang from your toes and yell it, but it doesn’t work. The price of education needs to be high enough so that people value it and low enough that it’s affordable.
And the right way to help those on the bottom of society is bursaries and scholarships (needs based). That’s what needs to be expanded to help the most people. And my point is that we need to expand the bursaries to help more. But keeping education so cheap isn’t working. Heck, people are willing to lose their semester and their money on this semester, it’s obviously too cheap.
I find your assumptions and non-sequitors not interesting enough to address, but I will address the point about regressive user fees:
Flat user fees (tuition) are only regressive if the funding of education through user fees is actually non-zero. You can’t claim that a zero fee represents a regressive way to fund education because it is not funding education at all. In the absence of user fees (tuition), the education has to be paid for by progressive taxes. Sure there exist bursaries, but they affect only a small portion of the population, and do not result in a progressive curve overall.
Zero fee isn’t regressive, it’s ineffective. Free education doesn’t work well, Quebec’s public schools are proof of that. Can you tell the difference in the marks of those on scholarships in the private schools versus those who pay? Probably not.
Look at the stats, how many people drop out of public schools versus private schools? How many drop out of CEGEP? How many finish CEGEP in the minimum allotted time? Free doesn’t work. It’s progressive, but it doesn’t work. People don’t value the resource. People don’t value something that’s free unless someone else is also paying for it.
And of course, you end up subsidizing other places, because all those students who take the free education and leave… well, you paid for that. So, it’s also ineffective.
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