Covid Journal, May 3, 2020
The Great Realization, where Hindsight is 2020
Many of you may have seen this video making the rounds. It’s worth watching.
It reminds us: why return to normal when normal wasn’t so normal?
Internet As A Public Utility?
The CBC has a piece where they talk about the internet for rural environments and the answer to their question is really quite simple: make the internet a public utility.
As we consider ‘new rules’ for a post-Covid world, let’s consider the very real and logical promise of a public internet. Companies like Bell, Rogers and others could still perform two functions: (1) infrastructure, as outsourced partners with construction of key internet components and (2) delivery of ‘optional services like subscription to pretty much any content combination they can imagine.
Let’s face it … there will be MANY people that object to this simple idea, but given the increasing dependence of ALL citizens on a functional internet, we need to consider this so that we can level the playing field a little.
What’s that? The cost of ‘information’ (basic as it may be) can run the average family anywhere from a few bucks a month to several hundreds and possibly even thousands per month once you add up service charges, subscriptions, wireless / cell phone access and so on.
As we go from a private to a public system of internet service, we should consider all of the other variables attached to this:
- Privacy / control of personal data
- Email accounts – have a ‘email@example.com’ for every citizen that wants one
- Shipping integration for ecommerce companies across the planet
- Basic versus high delivery packages
- Free services for organizations like schools and libraries / not-for-profits and other public institutions so that internet services and cell phone bills stop eating up public accounts
Honestly, it’s worth seriously considering and we all contemplate ‘new rules’. The era of monopoly over information is over.
Putting An End To Tax Cheats
Let’s have a simple new rule: if you dodge paying into the system, you lose the right to earn anything from the system.
If you’re Galen Weston and you refuse to pay taxes in Canada, then you cease to have the economic ability to generate revenue in Canada. That means, you lose your incorporation status with Loblaws and subsidiaries and your property becomes public property.
Sure … sounds like communism. But for whom? If you cheat the house in a casino, you get kicked out.
The Canadian government could also list and delist countries and corporations that make internal tax-avoidance commitments. If, for example, a company receives a taxpayer-funded bailout and suddenly decides not to be true to their commitments — i.e. through relocation, not opening a plant, laying off employees, etc. — they could be delisted by Corporations Canada and banned from operation.
Another simple requirement: companies that don’t pay taxes in Canada can’t access any form of government assistance under any circumstance.