As if that weren’t enough, the budget will also unveil the Conservatives’ plans for raising the retirement age for Old Age Security. The Tories maintain that the OAS is fiscally unsustainable unless younger workers delay their retirement beyond 65. But what is the new retirement age to be, and when will the new rules kick in?
The arithmetic used by Harper's government is correct: there will be fewer people working compared to those not working in years to come.
However, the obvious solution to the problem is conveniently avoided by the Tories (and, indeed, by all federal political parties).
It is a simple solution to the problem of declining population (a problem shared by many countries in the West, as well as by Japan). Increase your population.
And the most efficient way to do so is to substantially increase the number of immigrants into Canada for the next three decades. Instead of around a quarter of a million immigrants each year, we should be setting targets to ramp that number up to a figure closer to a million.
By 2040 we would have a substantially higher ratio of workers to non-workers, a much larger population base, and a far stronger country.