Submitted by Anthony Davis
Changes to the so-called basket of goods have left consumers worried that they might not be able to afford to feed themselves and their children as they will be forced to pay more for the goods they need – Barbados Today […](04 September 2015)
I dare say that it will not affect everybody’s shopping habits. It will not affect the members of this “people-centred Government”, and their ilk. They have the wherewithal to purchase whatever they want, any amount they want and whenever they want. This tax on these items which have been removed from the basket of goods and which now attract 17.5% VAT is for the plebs of our society.
On the one hand you have the Minister of Health colluding with the Minister of Finance to tax sweet drinks under the preposterous idea that that would stop people from buying such drinks, and so stop them from getting an NCD. This was just another willy nilly tax to get more money out of the populace’s pockets for Government’s coffers. Now we see that it is nothing but such a tax, because the said taxpayers are now being taxed for trying to eat healthy.
It is a case of “damned if you do, and damned if you don’t”.
Pray tell me, how can you talk about reducing the number of NCDs, if you now put 17.5% VAT on those items which are deemed good for a healthy diet? I didn’t go to school for very long and I only went to Brumley, so I would like some legal mind to help me untangle this web which has been woven for the taxpayers of this country to fall into.
So we are back at square one.
We can go to the fast food restaurants and eat our fill – it costs less and it doesn’t attract 17.5% VAT. I would laugh if this was not so serious. The thing is that he does not put the taxes to any sensible use – such as funding education, the QEH, the Psychiatric Hospital, the Child Care Board, the Welfare Department, or the Ministry of Sport, or the Ministry of the Environment – but gives them to such entities as Sandals and Cahill Energy.
The money is his so he can do whatever he likes with it!
Why worry about the lower echelons of our society, and the so-called middle class, it’s only their taxes he is giving away. Sparrow once sang a song of which some of the words were: “They say we paying to earn, but Sparrow say we paying to learn.” That was about Trinidad and Tobago, but it pertains to Barbados now. The old people always said: “Better the devil you know than the one you don’t.” All I can say is that we cannot do anything right because this Government has us between a rock and a hard place.
This is really unfathomable!
The worst part is that even flying fish – the most important part of our national dish – now attracts this destructive 17.5% VAT. What can the hotels, restaurants, stand-alone restaurants offer the tourists, if they have to pay an arm and a leg for our national dish? Tourists are already cutting back on their spend, and now comes this knockout punch for our flying fish and cou-cou.
I would suggest that the Minister of Tourism organizes a cook off among all of the restaurants on the island to see who can come up with a new national dish. The Minister of Finance could perhaps find something else, because he has doomed our present one to failure.
Calling the QEH, calling the QEH, come in please!
This is the Minister of Finance!
I had the bright idea of placing 17.5% VAT on some health items – including our well-loved flying fish – so people may start switching to fast food which is cheaper, and fills a hole just as well as the flying fish, tuna, etc. which are now attracting that amount of VAT.
Please be prepared for an upsurge in NCDs!
Over and out!