When it comes to the Occupy movement, AIMS Board Chair John Risley recognizes that there is disenchantment with the current system, but overall he thinks ‘occupiers’ miss the point.

Capitalism isn’t perfect – but it has been responsible for more wealth creation and more robust social programs than any other system yet, and provides opportunity to people from all walks of life. Of course, a societal debate about improving living standards is healthy and can be productive. In Missing the Mark, Risley argues that changes to the tax system should be undertaken – carefully. At what point does the tax system stop imposing such a huge responsibility on its top income generators? Where is the line between encouraging more entrepreneurs to come to Canada and driving them away with an uncompetitive tax burden?

Risley writes that we need to sustain the incentive system. Incentives and work ethic drive wealth creation. It has been the introduction of incentives that has driven growth in many countries, and it was the lack of incentives that caused communism to fail. We must also remember that communism – a system set out to make everyone equal – actually ensured that ninety-nine percent of the population had no prospects or opportunity. Those privileges were reserved for the one percent.

Yes, the debate we are undertaking is a healthy one. In this commentary, however, Risley explains why it is in this critique of capitalism that he finds the ‘occupiers’ miss the point entirely.


Click here to read the full commentary.