I was curious due the health care debate if it's really true that Canadians pay more in taxes than Americans do. Do they actually pay less and do it without running a deficit like we do? Here's what I found.
According to Wikipedia Canadian taxes amount to 33.4% of GDP whereas in the United States taxes amount to 28.2% of GDP. Canada typically operates at a surplus of about 1% of GDP compared to the U.S. which runs a deficit of about 4%. According to this website GDP in Canada is $39,300 per capita whereas in the United States it's $47,000. This means that Canadians pay $13,126 in taxes as compared to $13,254 in the United States. And their health care is fully paid for, whereas my employer and I pay huge bucks for my coverage.
Consider our health care costs. Look at what we're paying (though keep in mind that our government also pays the majority of our medical bills already).
Well, we've got a great system, some might say. Not according to the World Health Organization. France has an amazing health care system, with doctors that come to your home, crazy support for pregnant women. They do it at a cost of $3662 per capita verses $7098 in the U.S. I got these figures based on the 2005 % of GDP on health care compared to the 2008 per capita GDP figures, so it's a little skewed because I'm not using the latest #'s on health care, but it's giving us a sense of things.
Not that I'm a huge fan of Obama Care, but it seems we could adopt any other countries' system and do better than we're doing. Unfortunately what we'll get with our crony capitalist system is the worst of all worlds. We'll retain the features that keep us absurdly overpriced (third payer, no negotiating for reduced prices based on bulk purchasing) and adopt the worst features of other nations (less medical advancement).