Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Supply management and the poor

Supply management works like a regressive tax on the poor, according to a study by two agricultural economists at the University of Manitoba.

A regressive tax is one that costs both rich and poor the same amount of money; a progressive tax charges the richer people more than poorer people.

Economists Ryan Cardwell and Chad Lawley found that the tariffs that enable Canadian dairy and poultry farmers to charge more than their counterparts in the United States costs the poorest Canadians $339 per year and the richest $544.

They entitle their study Milked and Feathered: The Regressive Welfare Effects of Canada's Supply Management Regime.

The bottom line is that this system is not fair. It has made holders of quota paper millionaires and has left poor people scrabbling to subsist on the gritty fringes of Canadian society.