Your letters for Aug. 29

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Nancy Marley-Clarke, Calgary

Time for a sales tax

For decades, the Progressive Conservative government subsidized Alberta taxpayers, funding public services with oil and natural gas royalties. It was cynical but politically popular, and totally unwise fiscal policy. Now, both oil and natural gas royalties can no longer subsidize taxpayers.

For over a year, UCP propaganda has told us Alberta has a spending problem, not a revenue problem. But the plunge in royalties has left a gaping hole in our finances, proving we most certainly do have a revenue problem.

Alberta needs a provincial sales tax. A five percent PST would provide about $5 billion per year, without overly burdening the economy. Numerous economists have stated this repeatedly, using ample data and evidence to support the claim. If we brought back the Alberta healthcare premiums, that would create about another $1 billion.

These are two solutions that can help address Alberta’s revenue problem. If we refuse to create new revenue sources, then the province’s fiscal challenges will only continue.

Andrew Torry, Calgary

Don’t laugh at innovation

Re: Hyperloop simply a pie-in-the-sky idea, letter, Aug. 27

Len Dafoe got a great laugh reading the article about the possibility of a 1,000 km/hr hyperloop link between Calgary and Edmonton. He is in good company, of course, joining the crowds who laughed at the possibilities of human flight in airplanes, radio, television, space flight and landing men on the moon. He should have a look at old issues of Punch magazine where cartoonists had great fun mocking the idea of a world that is not flat. He should also remember that he who laughs last, laughs best.

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