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[personal profile] fredsmith
One last thing, and I swear I'll stop writing, and maybe I'll then be able to stop re-litigating this case in my head over and over.



What if it's not a legal decision? What if it's a political one? Cos THAT might be a reason why I should lose.

I mean, not on the a) 'stupid generalizations' argument below, but the b) 'suck it up' argument.

Stupid generalizations is a legal argument. You can't do that. But whether to ask the general public to 'suck it up' or not might just be a policy decision.

The fact is that because of the disabilty drop out provisions, there is a resulting imbalance in the Plan between normal contributions and normal benefits. So some way has to be found to keep the plan sustainable.

We have experience over time of the plan, so we know what the shortfall is. There are different ways we can make up this short fall. We can a) increase contribution levels accross teh board b) increase investments c) reduce benefits.

If we increase contributions, that affects everyone. But does it affect everyone equally? CPP benefits are EXTRAORDINARILY regressive. That is, they are a flat percentage of income up to a cut off point.

This means that their impact on poor people is way harsher than on rich people.

Like, If have to hand over 10% of my income, and I'm barely scraping by on what I make, then that extra 10% cut off could push me over the brink into into poverty.

But if I'm hugely wealthy, I could lose 10% of my income and barely feel it, even though in gross terms it is a much larger amount of money.

And the CPP is even harsher, because you only have to contribute on money up to the national average. So people who earn over the national average are effectively only contributing 7% or 5% or less of their actual income.

So we can't be cavaleier about just saying 'raise everyone's contribution rates equally' because it can have a DEVASTATING impact on some people.

And maybe those people would choose to take the risk. I'd rather have contributions levels at a rate I can handle, and if I ever get disabled? Ok, I'll take the slightly lesser pension entitlement.

Maybe that's a decision that can get made in a democratic society.

And maybe it's not a LEGAL argument about whether its fair or not to emake that call. As long as the disabled, or those who recognize that they may one day become disabled, had a say in the democratic process, and the current CPP did under go two years of studies and public consultations before they decided on the pension calculation formulas.. then .. Maybe I should lose anyway. On THAT argument at least.

I still think the 'bogus generalization' argument works, and if you really want to claw back, you have to tailor it in a way that actually makes sense, and captures the differences that you really want to capture instead of generalizing and guessing based on stereotype.

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December 2015

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