In Canada the 6% GST(Goods and Services Tax) also can be remitted quarterly. So although it gets calculated when the goods are produced, it does not necessarily get paid then. The business gets a refund after expenses. The average joe/jill consumer does not however. We get to pay the whole thing. Just like the sales tax in America.
American businesses may pay sales tax quarterly, but they pay it on what they have sold during that quarter, which can be some time after when the goods were produced.
On the work I performed for a large fortune 100 manufacturing company here in the U.S., I know that the Canadian branches of the company paid taxes much sooner than the U.S. branches did and that the Canadian branches of the company had to apply to the Canadian government to get some of that money back, this being done after proof of expenses were submitted, as you have mentioned. I know this because I was coding the computer programs which calculated the tax.
Generally speaking, the Canadian government gets the money sooner from it's businesses, and makes them work harder to get the money back than the U.S. government does from U.S. corporations. Canada's more developed social programs benefit from these kinds of policies.
As for the health insurance premiums you pay, that may be so for you but there is no denying that the Canadian government contributes far more financially to the healthcare of it's working class citizens than the U.S. government does to it's working class citizens-with the only exceptions being Medicaid and Medicare, of course.
Is it possible that your health insurance premiums are a mere supplement, and that many other Canadian working class citizens get by without paying any health insurance premiums ?