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Wednesday, 19 March 2014

pension rules rip off senior writers

Dear Chris,

         I have been reading your recent pieces with great interest. What you report is completely correct. ALL Canadians living on the government pensions alone are forced to live below the poverty line. The poverty line (by the government’s own calculation) is about $20,000 at the present time for a single person. But the highest pension amount (C.P.P. plus O.A.S. plus G.I.S.) is considerably under $19,000. Exactly as you report.

         But hold on Chris, it actually gets worse. Last year I received a cheque for $600 from my publisher in royalties. Since this was a year ago, it was my first royalty cheque since going on the O.A.S. and the G.I.S. Guess what? The government cut my pension by $42.36 per month. $42.36 X 12 is $508.32. I was only able to keep $91.68 of my $600 in royalties! (This is absolutely true.)

         I went to my M.P. (a Tory, unfortunately, but that’s not my fault) and inquired. I was told that this is the way the system works for retired people.

         This is not a one-off. I read Good Times magazine. They have a financial consultant reply to questions from readers concerning retirement issues. A reader of Good Times earned $200 in interest. And guess what? The government took most of it by reducing his pension for a year. So he wrote to the financial consultant at the magazine and was told what I had been told by my M.P. That’s the way the system works for retired folk.

         In my opinion this is TOTALLY outrageous. If you are poor and do manage to earn a few hundred dollars, the government will take almost all of it!

         In the future I will tell my publishers to keep my royalties. As poor as I may be, I would much rather take a pass on $91.68 if it means I can keep $508.32 out of the hands of the federal government.


         . . . James

p.s. Please feel free to share this letter with others.

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Hi James,

I filed my income taxes just over a week ago. My net income for 2013 was UNDER $10,000!
It will be interesting to see what my Guaranteed Annual Income Supplement will be increased to at the end of this July. Currently I'm receiving about $10 a month in the supplement - I can't continue to live on this amount ...

Thanks for letting me post your email. The government has everyone so confused and divided with the rules, regs & BS with our old age pensions that a lot of us are falling through the cracks. 

peace & poetry power!
Chris ... & Chase Wrffffffffffzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

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March 20, 2014

Dear Chris,
            Good to see my letter on your blog. The largest group of poor people in Canada is senior citizens, especially widows, widowers, and singles (like you). Once you stop being a wage-slave and paying income tax, the government does not give a shit if you live or die. In fact, if you die you stop costing them money every month.

Poetry Power!
            . . . James, Norma, and Rocky.

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Hi James & Anna,
Yes, I think it's good to keep harping away (pun intended) at the way we're used & abused during our working lives, & then pushed aside into not so genteel poverty once the
overspending pols no longer need us - makes me think of ANIMAL FARM   :  (       Turn the poor old work horse seniors into glue ... maybe I shouldn't even joke about this!!!!

Chris & Chase Wrfffffffzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz (we hiked too far yesterday for our tired old bods)

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