Hey Flaherty – bury the HST. I guarantee you that you would see less grouching if consumers never saw the tax. What annoys the consumer is seeing the tax on the bill; if you want to make HST palatable, just make it disappear into the price.
In fact, if you really want to be creative, raise it by 3% and eliminate it for new housing. You may not have noticed, but housing is getting expensive in Canada, especially in Toronto and Vancouver. Nailing buyers with a 13% tax on a new home is just a bad idea. Most people struggle to buy a home, and taxing new development just keeps more people out of the market.