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This book is about taxes in Canada: who pays what, and who gets what. Taxes connect us to one another, to the common good, and to the future. In many respects, then, this is a book about the Canada we want, about citizenship and the common good, and about the role of government. The contributors, leading practitioners and scholars on taxation and public policy in Canada, explore how taxes have become a political “no-go zone” and how changes in taxation are changing Canada. They challenge the view that “any tax is a bad tax” and provide broad directions for fairer and smarter approaches. Tax Is Not a Four-Letter Word provides new information on how taxation, and our thinking about it, has evolved. The contributors present data that sets out what we get for what we pay and what we lose when we pay less. They also seek to capture how citizens came to think of tax cuts as the “last free lunch” and propose ways to generate a public discussion on the subject despite the political reluctance. This is a book that will be of interest to students of public policy and public aff airs, economics, and political science and to anyone interested in challenging the conventional wisdom that ever-lower taxes and smaller government are the answers to what ails us.
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