Canadian News

Poll Reveals 50% Of Canadians 18-24 Favour Socialism

More than 4 in 10 Canadians — and half of younger Canadians aged 18-24 — support socialism as their preferred economic system, but an overwhelming majority define socialism as more government spending and programs, and Canadians generally don’t want to pay the higher taxes required to finance it, finds a new study by the Fraser Institute, an independent, non-partisan, Canadian public policy thinktank, working in conjunction with think tanks in the U.S., Australia and the U.K.

“A whole segment of the population—not just in Canada but across the developed world—self-describes as socialist, but many of them have never lived in a world with genuine socialism nor the misery it imposed,” said Jason Clemens, executive vice president of the Fraser Institute and co-author of Perspectives on Capitalism and Socialism: Polling Results from Canada, the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom.

Using new polling data from Leger, commissioned for the Fraser Institute in the fall of 2022, the study finds that 42 per cent of all Canadians support socialism as their preferred economic system. The number rises to 50 per cent among Canadians aged 18-24, and it drops to 38 per cent support among Canadians over 55.

Unlike other similar polls, this recent poll explored how respondents defined socialism. Only 25 per cent of Canadians polled defined socialism in the traditional sense—government owning and controlling businesses and industries. Instead, 65 per cent of Canadians define socialism as government providing more services, and 57 per cent think socialism is government providing a guaranteed minimum income.

The poll found similar results for the United Kingdom, the United States and Australia.

Crucially, when asked how the government should finance the increased government spending on programs and/or providing a guaranteed minimum income, only 31 per cent supported an across-the-board increase in personal income taxes, while just 16 per cent supported raising the GST. Instead, most Canadians preferred a new wealth tax on the top one per cent of income earners (72 per cent), and increasing personal income taxes on the top 10 per cent of income earners (59 per cent) to finance “socialism.”

“These targeted tax hikes will not generate anywhere near enough revenue to pay for the higher levels of spending linked with socialism,” said Steven Globerman, Fraser Institute senior fellow and study co-author.

“If Canadians want a larger government and substantially higher government spending, then all Canadians, and not just top income earners, will have to pay higher taxes to finance it.”

Photo by Luis Quintero on Unsplash

One Comment

  1. Socialism
    Quotes by Thomas Sowell regarding Socialism may provide something to think about:

    “Socialism is a wonderful idea. It is only as a reality that it has been disastrous. Among people of every race, color, and creed, all around the world, socialism has led to hunger in countries that used to have surplus food to export….. Nevertheless, for many of those who deal primarily in ideas, socialism remains an attractive idea – in fact, seductive. Its every failure is explained away as due to the inadequacies of particular leaders.”

    ” Socialism in general has a record of failure so blatant that only an intellectual could ignore or evade it.”

    Folks should be careful what they ask for as they just might get it.

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