Let’s harmonize the hated Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) into a Tax Intended for Politicians (TIP).  This is not just a cosmetic change, I propose that the change also come with a variable rate adjustment.

Every time we go to a restaurant these days, we see the HST and another line called TIP.  The HST is set at 13% and it really irks you.  It hurts.

On the other hand, the TIP line is left open.  It is totally voluntary.  What you put there depends on your level of satisfaction with the products and service you received.  If you were very satisfied, you might add 20%.  If you were not happy at all you might leave 10%, or sometimes if you are really dissatisfied, you might leave nothing at all.

You are voting with your wallet to reflect the kind of experience you received from the establishment.

Wouldn’t it be a great wake up call for government if every transaction was subject to similar such votes of confidence?

Economists might tell us that the government will get nothing at all.

But those working in the hospitality trade seldom receive nothing, even though the amount is left as totally arbitrary and totally voluntary for the purchaser.  Do waiters know something that politicians do not?

Think of it as taxation with accountability.

Politicians are already obsequious and willing to play to whatever they think the majority will endorse.  Here is an instant way for them to get feedback based on what the take is each week.

And it’s a lot cheaper than running surveys that are only directionally sound.  This would provide a response right in the money bag.  Something all tax payers already feel when a new added tax like the HST is imposed.

So when politicians think of creating some bridge to nowhere, a jobs-for-life agreement with civil servants (civil servants?  that’s an oxymoron at best), or a policy to reward their friends and colleagues, they might think twice.

It would be even better if the amount paid to elected representatives and civil employees was adjusted according to the revenues generated by the TIP.  Being paid based on the success of your enterprise is something those in private industry know all too well.

And think of the service you might get from those surly government employees whose salary is indexed to total public TIP.

Right now, politicians and government employees are paid well no matter how well they do in their jobs.  Isn’t it about time they had incentive based income?

It might be more direct than having to wait until the next election to throw them out.

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