January 17, 2017

Trudeau Liberals eye Netflix taxes

Brian LilleyArchive

An old saying sums up the left-wing view of dealing with business. “If it moves tax it, if it keeps moving regulate it, if it stops moving subsidize it.” What’s moving now is online media so it shouldn’t surprise anyone that the Liberals are considering a Netflix tax.

Former Prime Minister Stephen Harper did warn about this in the last election, and was of course mocked for it but now that warning is coming true.

Two different headlines, from two different news organizations, citing documents from two different departments looking at two different taxes the Liberals could impose on Netflix and other streaming services.

CBC’s story is just out. The Globe’s came out a week ago.

Citing Heritage Department briefing notes for their minister, Melanie Joly, the bureaucrats are pushing for the HST, the sales tax to be applied to Netflix and other foreign streaming services, like Google Play or Apple. The argument is that Canadian based streaming services must pay HST, so foreign services should too.

The Trudeau Liberals signed Canada onto an international agreement just a month after they were elected arguing that the tax paid and collected should be determined where the customer resides, not where the service is purchased from.

Netflix, and it’s customers likely are not crazy about this idea but officially, the company is staying neutral, as in this statement cited by CBC: "Netflix collects and remits tax wherever we are legally obligated to do so."

Now sales tax is one thing, but it isn’t the only thing the Liberals are looking at imposing on foreign services.

The Globe and Mail reports that the Privy Council Office, the prime minister’s own department, held focus groups on a number of issues just last November and one of those issues was how to get more money out of your pockets to pay for Canadian culture.

They want to keep propping up the Canadian media fund, a big pot of money paid for by your cable subscriptions. But with many Canadians cutting the cord, there is less money flowing into it.

What to do? Tax something else.

According to the documents reported on by the Globe, there were four options presented to participants:

- Making telecom companies divert some smartphone and Internet revenue;
- Requiring “foreign companies like Netflix and iTunes” to devote a portion of revenues;
- Giving consumers the option of making a voluntary $2 contribution on their telecom or Netflix bill; or
- Making telecom companies add an app to every smartphone sold in Canada that would provide access to Canadian music, TV and film for between $5 and $15 a month or a flat charge of $3 on the sale of all smartphones.

The favoured options were forcing telecoms and foreign companies to pay up, as long as it didn’t increase their bills.

Just dandy! Charge those rich guys I buy stuff off of, but just don’t let them pass it on to me!

This, from the report:

“Of the four options presented, support was greatest for making telecom and foreign companies contribute to fund Canadian content. That being said, there was a strong desire for the additional cost to be assumed by those companies rather than being passed on to subscribers, especially with respect to cellular service, an industry that is considered uncompetitive. It was also mentioned that if foreign companies were required to contribute to fund Canadian content, there is also a risk that services such as Netflix decide to stop their Canadian distribution.”

Well at least folks realize that taxing companies to death might chase them away.

For decades Canadian cultural policy has followed the maxim stated above, ‘If it moves tax it, if it keeps moving regulate it and if it stops moving subsidize it.’

We have taxed the successful to subsidize the unsuccessful and it has created an industry that is stagnant in many ways, that can’t adapt and relies on handouts from government agencies.

And now the Liberals are looking at bringing this same business model to the digital age.

If they do, don’t expect things to last long as they are. You better get your binge watching in now.

You must be logged in to comment. Click here to log in.
commented 2017-01-18 20:11:59 -0500
The rebel should start selling signs and shirts that read ‘stop the netflix tax.’
commented 2017-01-18 19:40:02 -0500
Get used to it
Liberalism kills the economy , they still need to raise monies to give to the un to fight global warming
commented 2017-01-18 18:58:15 -0500
Bob you are so right. Sometimes there is a new tv series popping up on Crave or Netflix. My wife is American so she doesn’t quite get it, but if it is a Canadian series, I tell her not to bother with it, as it is most assuredly stupid.
commented 2017-01-18 14:50:00 -0500
@ Deborah – “My guess is that the book that they would really like to ban, is The Holy Bible!”

All the more reason to: Prov. 3:3, Prov. 7:3, Heb. 8:10, 10:16

I think a time will come regarding what you said.
commented 2017-01-18 14:10:24 -0500
Millennials have cut the cord so unwittingly they accept the CBC tax which they pay in their income tax, but they live and die by streaming services. Watch the outcry when they see “Surfer Dude” start to go after their chosen forms of entertainment.
commented 2017-01-18 13:36:27 -0500
Tilly or should i say Gordo? Carbon Tax is a left wing tax, and Harper LOWERED our tax burden.
commented 2017-01-18 13:33:53 -0500
We truly have become servants to these Liberal Socialist masters at every level of government. Of course they will tax everything in sight.
commented 2017-01-18 12:22:11 -0500
Tilly the troll living in denial. Sure why not, let’s do as the Libs and deny and deflect reality. According to them all past documented facts are nothing but fantasies and wishful musings. Thank you Tilly for the best laugh of the day.
commented 2017-01-18 11:54:25 -0500
Every sensible Canadian should now start “educating” all those morons that keep on voting for liberals.
I try and believe me I have lost friends because I speak so vehemently against those morons, but many who are willing to listen with an open mind have changed their allegiance. That is at the Federal and Provincial level.
commented 2017-01-18 11:40:12 -0500
These comments truly make me laugh.
To think the liberals solely create new taxes, raise taxes etc. is a joke. No government is free from not generating taxes from the people.
If people stop looking through a proverbial tunnel you will see this occurs at all levels of government and within all political party.
commented 2017-01-18 10:51:25 -0500
Peter Netterville – be careful, they may take away our books too, or limit the books that we are allowed to read. You know how liberals love to tell others what to do and say. I’m a huge book fan and I shop at Chapters online all the time. The books I’m interested in are available on-line, but are not available in the stores. Many titles are only available on Amazon. Especially if it’s a book that they don’t want the general public to read, because they might grab a clue as to what these globalists are up to. My guess is that the book that they would really like to ban, is The Holy Bible!
commented 2017-01-18 10:50:51 -0500
A few years back I contacted a government archive in Ottawa, I requested information concerning what services and goods etc., were taxable in 1867, and then broken down into 10 year increments, what services and goods became taxable since then, until present day…I thought it might be an interesting graphic…
About a year later I get a phone call from this archive – a year – and I’m told I don’t have access to that information…Gee, I wonder why.
I’d still like to see that information, I don’t have faith in the present Loyal Opposition members to do the right thing – just more of the same BS posturing.
Seeing the reasonable Steven Harper, ex-PM, was almost painful to watch – considering how much of a laughing stock of the world Justin has made his post-national Canada, not to mention the likely permanent damage he and his Globalist totalitarian minions have wrought on Canada to date…
I want my country back – Death to traitors!
commented 2017-01-18 09:18:36 -0500
I would like to see the government tax me when I read my books.

The Liberals are and have always been the “tax and waste” / “tax and line-Liberal-pockets” party.

The Liberals are the party of thieves. They are properly called the Libranos for a reason.
commented 2017-01-18 08:17:44 -0500
Not a shocker. It was Pierre Trudeau that made Canadians pay far more than before, his alleged offspring is determined to continue the tradition.

First tax, temporary wartime measure:

Trudeau’s machinations: [Pierre Trudeau April 1968 – June 1979: March 3, 1980 – June 1984] ensuring the government can take more monies:
“This culminated in the budget address of June 18, 1971 that proposed Bill C-259 to amend the Income Tax Act that became effective Jan. 1 1972. The number of brackets peaked at 14 in 1973 and ranged from 4.58% to 61.34% and by then 37% of the population where paying taxes. The result was a considerable change in taxation in Canada and since that date, every budget address has presented a considerable number of amendments to the tax legislation.”
commented 2017-01-18 08:01:37 -0500
Canadian content blows period..I would not pay one red cent for Canadian content, its garbage…
I’m surprised people are shocked at this tax scam again. Electing a communist government is all about making the hard working man pay and using his money to fund the fat and lazy..example – in Ontario before mcshithead & horse face took over, construction had a 5%tax plus rebates from government to homeowners, everything was above board … libtards took over and no more rebates , 13% tax plus a 7%wsib tax scam plus city working license of a few hundred bucks a year. So in a nut she’ll, that 5% is now 20% … hmmm I wonder why things went underground…
commented 2017-01-18 06:33:30 -0500
why are we funding canadian content!!! that pisses me off, and its why canadian t.v and movies SUCK!!! it does not have to be good because it is not competitive.
commented 2017-01-18 06:31:22 -0500
Well, it costs a lot of money to have the CBC do damage control when Junior puts his foot in it and lately with pay for play, the Aga Khan holiday and Justin’s pratfalls on the “Love Me Do Tour” expenses at the CBC are going through the roof. The guys in the CBC siuation room havn’t had a break for weeks.
commented 2017-01-18 02:26:18 -0500
So do these taxes apply to rebel memberships?
commented 2017-01-18 01:45:42 -0500
The Beatles:

Let me tell you how it will be
There’s one for you, nineteen for me
‘Cause I’m the taxman, yeah, I’m the taxman
Should five per cent appear too small
Be thankful I don’t take it all
‘Cause I’m the taxman, yeah I’m the taxman
If you drive a car, I’ll tax the street,
If you try to sit, I’ll tax your seat.
If you get too cold I’ll tax the heat,
If you take a walk, I’ll tax your feet.
Don’t ask me what I want it for
If you don’t want to pay some more
‘Cause I’m the taxman, yeah, I’m the taxman
Now my advice for those who die
Declare the pennies on your eyes
‘Cause I’m the taxman, yeah, I’m the taxman
And you’re working for no one but me.
commented 2017-01-18 01:05:21 -0500
Sorry working class, if you had a long tiring day and want to relax and watch Netflix that will cost you even more. The libs sure love the middle class.
commented 2017-01-18 01:03:48 -0500
Geez , can i still scratch my scrotum tax free?
commented 2017-01-18 00:16:51 -0500
These SOB’s won’t be happy until they have taxed us back to the 1800’s. I guess I could say I will still have my radio, but just about every thing on there has also turned to crap, except for some decent short wave channels out of the USA.

Canada has really stepped in it this time.

Maybe it’s time to hide out in wilderness and forget all this bs. That way if the revenuers show up I’ll have a nice shallow unmarked hole to put them.

This country is really starting to suck!!
<-- /_page_stream.html -->