I’ve said it. Others have said it. We admit in the past supporting the Conservative government with our vote and, in some cases, with our donations. Now? We cannot vote for a party which fails to fulfill what is arguably the number one mandate of any government: to provide protection for the citizens of Canada. This government plans to hand over the financial information of loyal Canadian citizens to the IRS, a criminal branch of the foreign government laying in wait at our Southern border. This treachery will not go unpunished. Consider the following comment:
I know that we can’t expect any help from our Conservative government, but I am feeling a bit better today. I am a Canadian business owner with an accidental American spouse. I have always supported the Conservatives, occasionally with donations. I made a pledge a while back, after a phone solicitation, but did not send it in. A representative from the party called me to ask where my donation was, and I happily told her she wasn’t getting one, not now , or ever for that matter. She asked why and I told her it was because of the government`s position on FATCA. I had to spell it for her, but she assured me she would pass the info on.
Please make more comments like this. Please comment especially if you were voting conservative and now will refuse to do so. My wife is a business owner. But next election night, I am going to take Mrs. Petros out to dinner, buy her flowers, go to a movie, and thus completely distract her. So for every one former Tory voter who is a so-called US citizen, whose the government plans to commit extraordinary rendition of their bank account information, the Tory government will likely lose at least two votes.
@northernstar, You reminded me of Corey Hart, Canadian singer, and ‘Never Surrender’
And if Cory Hart’s ‘Never Surrender’ takes awhile, we can always wear our sunglasses at night…lol.
All right sir, I will take you at your word where you state : “I am affected as a “not-by-choice US Person”. Therefor I will withdraw the charge of “Harperite Troll”. However, I will continue to disagree with your other points of view.
@ Henry Hub
I used FACTA all throughout the first e-mail I sent to Jim Flaherty (2 years ago) … AND in the subject line.
Good stuff. That’s good as in well written, not as in what you were writing about.
Contrary to what some Conservative MPs have been told to parrot, there is nothing “thrilling” about that infernal IGA.
I really liked Corey singing this song. The official trailer shows him leaving home. It is very emotional. It brought back memories for me. Leaving my home when my parents told me it was them or my to be husband. I cried and I left. It reminded me of when we decided to come to Canada. I cried and we left. The biggest cry i ever had was knowing my son was very near death and would die in a few days. And then 18 months later I cried and left the pallitive care when his dad, my soul mate died.
I never surrendered my love for them. These cries made me more determined in fighting FATCA. I believe it is unjust, immoral, unconstitutional. It is ugly greed. You all are my family now and I will not surrendar.
Actually, the CBA and investment arms and kin did not “publicly oppose” FATCA for very long or with much in the way of dedicated resources and effort. They chose to divert their money and strategy into lobbying the Canadian government (which indisputably happens to be headed by a Conservative party leader = Harper) to sign on to FATCA via the IGA as soon as possible. After a certain point, they shifted focus to offering commentary on the forms and method of complying with FATCA, rather than opposing it.
The CBA put out compliance information far in advance of the IGA, anticipating that it would be signed, and insisted to us, on this site and elsewhere, that there was no other option – resistance was futile. They have a heavily vested interest in the FATCA IGA, and are hardly an objective or robust source of reliable information on the IGA, its shortfalls, pitfalls, conflict with the Charter, etc. The outcome they favour is at odds with the best interests of their fellow Canadian citizens, residents, taxpayers and their accountholders. Their primary allegiance is to themselves, and whatever they feel is best for their bottom line. Some of them, like the TD, actually have more branches and investment in the US than in Canada. So, that makes their position very self serving, and carefully crafted to support whatever tactic they feel is most convenient.
Re “Exempt from IGA are (inter alia): RRSPs, TFSAs, RRIFs, RESPs, etc”.
Actually, they are not really EXEMPT. The IGA may currently state that Canadian FFIs do not HAVE to REPORT them, but it does not state that they MUST not. It appears that Canadian FFIs CAN OPT to report accounts if they choose to – even those under the reporting threshold. There is no penalty for overreporting. And there has recently been some doubt cast on whether that so-called ‘exemption’ will be accepted by the US as the IGAs are boilerplate and not designed to accommodate exceptions. The US has insisted on not making exceptions by country – even though Canada is not a tax haven and has the most extensive tax treaty of any that the US has entered into – which reports on accounts based on US or Canadian RESIDENCY, NOT on a citizenship/status basis as per the FATCA IGA. An important distinction that is deliberately obscured when the claim is made that the IGA only builds on the existing treaty agreement. Not to mention that the full implementation of FATCA demands ALL transactions – not just the taxable interest earned, or even just the balances. There has never been blanket automatic reporting on ALL transactions of accounts belonging to > 1 million individuals/families under the existing Canada US treaty. So arguing that the FATCA IGA is ‘merely’ an adjunct to the pre-existing treaty is disingenous.
Those Canadian registered accounts you refer to are still subject to individual FATCA reporting on Form 8938 (where relevant thresholds apply) AND, are still considered by the US to be ‘taxable foreign trusts’. As I mentioned to you in my previous comment about the glaring failure of the current Canadian government (headed by Harper – a Conservative) and the last Finance Minister (Conservative) to address the gaping deficiencies in the Canada US Tax Treaty (last negotiated by a Conservative) – our registered accounts are not protected from US extraterritorial assertions that they are subject to treatment as US taxable, without exemption (excepting RRSPs and RRIFs if each and every one is religiously reported annually using the correct forms and treaty election).
If the ruling party who has entered into this IGA is Conservative, the leader of the government is a Conservative, the Minister who entered into the agreement is a Conservative; those are indisputable facts.
If we who oppose the IGA note that those who chose to hide the FATCA legislation in an omnibus bill (which tactic was condemned by Harper as an MP) are Conservatives, and only Conservatives voted for it, it is hardly evidence of a concerted effort to slander the current government for us to note the political affiliation of those who entered into it (Conservative) signed it (Conservative), and who enabled and supported it (only Conservatives).
If you are looking for research in order to inform your opinion on the FATCA IGA and what hazards it poses – and whether it can accurately be characterized as ‘noxious’, perhaps you would consider reading the paper (see link below) by two top Canadian scholars, who objectively analyzed the FATCA IGA that Canada signed (and who cannot be accused of partisanship or Conservative bashing):
“……..We examined the proposed Implementation Act and the IGA and we find that they raise a number of serious issues ranging from likely constitutional violations to violations of international law. We submit these comments in the hope that they will help lawmakers and the public understand that FATCA, while intended to catch tax evaders, is poised instead to impose serious and unjustified harms on people who live around the world as non-resident U.S. citizens and green card holders, as well as their family members and business associates.”
Fulltext available at;
‘Submission to Finance Department on Implementation of FATCA in Canada’
McGill University – Faculty of Law
Arthur J. Cockfield
Queen’s University – Faculty of Law
March 10, 2014
@George – you could have added a few more unchallengeable facts like:
10. A Canadian citizen who is partner in a Canadian business – whether organized as a partnership or corporation – who has as a partner another Canadian citizen with the wrong birth indicia will have financial records of his or her business handed over to the IRS without knowledge or consent. Note, neither the business nor the other partners may even know that they have a Canadian of tainted origins in their midst. The only way to avoid the outcome is to make direct inquiries about national origin of all members of the firm and to force the US Person out of the business. Invitation to discrimination anyone? (By the way – guess what business uses partnership as the predominant form of business? Oh yeah, law firms. Bet that won’t generate any litigation or complaining about breach of solicitor client privilege as trust accounts are passed off to the IRS….).
11. A Canadian citizen who has married another Canadian of inferior national origin without making adequate inquiries about his or her national origins will have all bank accounts, investment accounts etc handed over to the government of a foreign state. Their spouse will then receive demands for penalties and fines relating to all of the supposedly “exempt” registered accounts. Those penalties will amount to more than 100% of the net worth of the family in EVERY SINGLE CASE for people who have lived out of the United States most of their lives. Oh yeah, none of this will relieve them of their obligation to pay taxes to Canada, the government that just handed over their data and sent the collection agency after them (but won’t help collect the debt, don’t worry!).
Also, @George you were being far too kind with the “extortion” comment. The withholding tax is nothing short of expropriation without compensation. Canadian financial institutions have invested billions in the United States. Without change of domestic law in Canada – which obviously lies beyond their control – their entire business in the United States would be expropriated in withholding taxes within a matter of months. Castro was clearly not imaginative enough since just taking US businesses and paying inadequate compensation got him the Bay of Pigs and exploding cigars. He should have thought of a witholding tax! Our friend doing his research can start with the “national treatment” provisions of NAFTA which would be pretty clearly violated by such a provision. Canadian FI’s were not willing to bet their franchise on a law suit and Canada – for better or for worse – has caved on their behalf.
Personally, I think the US will get almost nothing back from FATCA, Canada will sabotage its implementation, paying it the most cursory of lip services and the courts are very likely to block it. The follow on impact of Canada’s example will very likely be significant. China won’t play and China holds a big chunk of US debt and foreign investment. I don’t think the US is ready to declare trade war on China for this. For their trouble, the US will generate deeper antipathy in the halls of government in Europe, Canada and elsewhere and the move to replace the US as a world reserve currency is going to pick up speed. The latter point is the Achilles Heel of the US economy, quite frankly. Their ability to fund a deficit, print money and generally export their problems to the world lasts until the world ceases to trade predominantly in US dollars. Already the US direct share of world trade is waning. At some point, Japan and Germany and Saudi Arabia and China are going to come up with a viable alternative to trading with each other in dollars. Where the tipping point will be reached is hard to say, but when it happens, the consequences on the US will be cataclysmic. Silly risk to be taking for a tax regime that will spend as much as it collects abroad on a good day.
I’m not sure what the future will bring, but if the present is any indication of future behaviour, there will be no limit to the US government’s brutality in protecting its interests.
Nor do I know much about economics, but it seems to me that the more a government intervenes to protect its free markets, the more they destroy them. Nothing good comes from excessive government intervention – FATCA a prime example.
Angus Reid poll question: “Will you vote for Stephen Harper in the next election?” Right now 60% say NO.
Boy, did I stay on topic this time! 🙂
I just voted…. still 60 percent no…
@Anne Frank, my blood pressure had gone up and it was time for me to close. But thank you for your well written sober expansion and continuation. 😉
A step in the right direction in Conservative Calgary…
I think you’ll like this recent article in the Calgary Herald how the balance of power in Canada has shifted significantly to Alberta and BC:
Harper’s support among Conservatives approaching free fall:
It’s not true that commenters are making negative statements about Stephen Harper because we are on some “anti-Harper bashing fest”.
I certainly can’t be one of these Harper bashers as I voted Tory in the last election and had a Tory sign on my lawn (together with my wlfe’s Liberal sign).
But I will vote against the Harper government in the next election because this government aims to give away rights of Canadians for fear of consequences from a foreign government.
I know that some comments on this site are strongly worded, but I hope that you will continue to comment and appreciate the arguments.
Thank you for taking the time to read and respond to my previous posting regarding tactical opposition to CPC.
First I wish to assure that I am not an “agent” of any opposition party (would that I were…).
And that my statement previous support of the CPC with both my vote and my cash is true.
And also true is that I am now contributing to Liberal, NDP and Green parties, while withdrawing my support from the CPC.
I am essentially a “single issue” voter until this matter is resolved. Maybe that’s narrow minded; but I am deeply aggrieved.
If you were to review my previous posts on this public blog site, you would see dozens of posts, spanning more than one year, regarding many different aspects of this issue. I have always tried to focus on:
– noting useful research sources and information – “connecting the dots”
– quoting journalistic or other factual sources
– developing sound arguments based on facts, precedent, rhetoric and common sense
– avoiding ad hominem attacks or comments
– suggesting possible lawful tactics
If I was any kind of agent of the Liberals or NDP, I would have to be a very deep sleeper agent!
Further to my comment, http://isaacbrocksociety.ca/2014/04/11/how-many-formerly-loyal-voters-will-now-abandon-the-harper-party/comment-page-4/#comment-1446679, I got this email a short while ago from “Disgusted”:
Disgusted, I doubt you are black-listed! I will forward your comment to Petros to indicate there is a problem.
We all know how effective the Calgary Mayor Nenshi campaign was – with *most* Calgarians happy with the result of getting new Nenshi-type blood into the governing of Calgary, with the benefit of his LEADERSHIP during the southern Alberta floods, but most of all a better track record of listening to ALL Calgarians.
Your response to @dt804a was excellent, and prompted the reply, “@George – I will respond at a later time; your post requires research and time to formulate a reply.” I have checked back every day to see the reply, hoping (but not really believing) that @dt804a might be able to provide some insights that would ease my cognitive dissonance. I can only assume that, if @dt804a has seriously pondered the points you made (supported by excellent posts from others), s/he might also now be suffering some serious cognitive dissonance.
Is any Brocker or will any Brocker be able to attend this Friday breakfast with Joe Oliver in Calgary?
April 24, 2014
Minister of Finance to Address Economic Club of Canada in Calgary
Minister of Finance Joe Oliver will be the guest speaker at a breakfast hosted by the Economic Club of Canada on Friday, April 25, 2014. The Minister is scheduled to speak at approximately 8:15 a.m.
The event will take place at the Fairmont Palliser, 133 – 9th Avenue SW, in Calgary, Alberta.
For further information:
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of Finance
Department of Finance