Let's follow this through, with fictitious numbers.
I pay $1 more than I have to, over the course of 1 week. I spend $100 in a week. Other $99 goes towards paying salaries, electricity, equipment, some amount put aside for expansion and replacement, etc.
SMRT takes that $1 and pay it to shareholders as dividends.
54 cents of this $1 goes to Temasek.
Assuming they pay all 54 cents to IRAS as tax, or the money goes back to the government's accounts in some other way (I really have no idea, but I'm not doubting this is all above board and honest) I'm still paying 54 cents more per week than I have to - the other 36 cents goes to other shareholders - and the money goes to the government for them to spend in next year's budget. So, is that tax?
BTW - Temasek Holdings pay tax? I'm not doubting you, since I know very little about Temasek Holdings. But the very concept is strange to me. Left hand giving right hand money to spend?
Last edited by lennyl; 21st October 2008 at 07:42 AM.
There is no getting away from it, poor people are taxed too... if they fall sick they are taxed like others do, buy medicine taxed, buy essential food also taxed.
If they remove taxes on essential stuff then I think it would benefit the poor. Say a certain brand of bread, rice etc.. cheaper stuff.
So those who ate quality branded stuff like premium bread or high grade quality rice etc.. pay GST, there must be some way to help the less well off.
In the end, deep down, what we all (or at least most of us) want is for the tax collector to tax someone else other than ourselves
Last edited by lennyl; 21st October 2008 at 09:35 AM.
FYI, I pay quite a bit on taxes, was told I fall within top 30%, so no matter how I will pay taxes... not posting this for my own self interest...
Is GST a perfect system? It is far from it. But I think it is better than the old way of collecting tax. Spend more pay more. but everyone needs to spend so the poor spends on the necessity but the rich spends on the extras.
So everybody in a way contribute to the maintenance of a nation. Without it, no nation can function.
Someone passed me a copy of the Today's paper at work, I am happy that some MPs raised the concerns what I was saying in this thread.
Excerpts from that story which is close to what I am concern about is as follows:
../azul123MP Arthur Fong (West Coast GRC) and Non-Constituency MP Sylvia Lim, in particular, zeroed in on bread-and-butter issues. Ms Lim said there would be little justification for “further hiking GST or raising Government fees and charges”. MP Lim Biow Chuan (Marine Parade GRC), who went further to suggest a reduction in GST, also had property tax and public transport fares on his wish list.
“I prefer that the Government finds ways to keep the overall cost of living lower, rather than provide targeted financial aid to the needy as the only solution,” said Mr Lim.
“I watch with concern each time with the transport fares or telephone charges or utilities, and what we see is a long queue of people at the community centres or community clubs applying for financial help to cope with these increases. But, there’s really nothing much they can do, as the cost of living is simply too much to bear for many of them.”