Moderators: richierich, ua900, PanAm_DC10, hOMSaR

 
User avatar
Kiwirob
Topic Author
Posts: 13380
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2005 2:16 pm

Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Thu Jan 10, 2013 7:55 pm

the Fire Department, Police, Education and the military, since a large number of US citizens are against free public health why not privatise other existing free public services? Makes logical sense if you ask me.
 
User avatar
Aesma
Posts: 14045
Joined: Sat Nov 14, 2009 6:14 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Thu Jan 10, 2013 9:24 pm

Seems to me in the US it's already half the case. It's paid for by local taxes. So every city has its own system, pension schemes etc., which must add a lot of overhead. If you privatized I'm sure big companies would take over the services of multiples cities to reduce costs.
New Technology is the name we give to stuff that doesn't work yet. Douglas Adams
 
User avatar
fr8mech
Posts: 8163
Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2005 9:00 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Thu Jan 10, 2013 9:33 pm

Quoting KiwiRob (Thread starter):
the Fire Department, Police, Education and the military, since a large number of US citizens are against free public health why not privatise other existing free public services? Makes logical sense if you ask me.

In quite a few municipalities; fire & ems are contracted to private entities. Private (religious and non-religious) are common through-out the United States.
When seconds count, the police are minutes away, or may not come at all.
It’s hard to win an argument with a smart person, but it’s damn near impossible to win an argument with a stupid person. ~B. Murray
Ego Bibere Capulus, Ut Aliis Sit Vivere
 
User avatar
Kiwirob
Topic Author
Posts: 13380
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2005 2:16 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Thu Jan 10, 2013 9:34 pm

Quoting Aesma (Reply 1):
Seems to me in the US it's already half the case. It's paid for by local taxes.

Paid for by local taxes is still a public service, for example people should have fire insurance on their homes, if your property catches fire the fire department would put it out for you since you've paid for the service, if you didn't have fire insurance your property would burn.

[Edited 2013-01-10 13:35:23]
 
User avatar
fr8mech
Posts: 8163
Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2005 9:00 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Thu Jan 10, 2013 9:51 pm

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 3):
if you didn't have fire insurance your property would burn.

It actually used to be like this in many places in the US. You paid your "insurance" directly to the fire department and they would put out a fire on your property...some would even "ensure" your property didn't burn. The fire department I served with had a couple of old medallions that folks would affix to their doors or front porch to show they had paid the insurance.

Quoting KiwiRob (Thread starter):
other existing free public services

I missed that earlier. I know you realize that these "free public services" are not free, right?
When seconds count, the police are minutes away, or may not come at all.
It’s hard to win an argument with a smart person, but it’s damn near impossible to win an argument with a stupid person. ~B. Murray
Ego Bibere Capulus, Ut Aliis Sit Vivere
 
BMI727
Posts: 11300
Joined: Mon Feb 02, 2009 9:29 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Thu Jan 10, 2013 9:57 pm

Quoting KiwiRob (Thread starter):
the Fire Department, Police,

Many ambulance services are already private, either for profit or nonprofit, entities. Furthermore, other, often small, municipalities do essentially privatize such services by signing an agreement with a neighboring town.

Quoting KiwiRob (Thread starter):
Education

Education is an essential government function that should be expanded while cutting off welfare. Stop handing out money and food stamps and give people a better education instead, which they can either use or not.

That said, plenty of private education on all levels, from preschool to universities, is available for those who wish to use it.

Quoting KiwiRob (Thread starter):
the military,

A fully privatized military would just be a band of thugs, and is a practical impossibility. However, many military functions are already outsourced to private companies, for example airlines contracted for troop movements which is something hardly confined to the American military. I'd be in favor of the use of more competitive bidding for non-combat functions. There's not much sense in paying for full GI Bill, VA, etc. benefits for the person driving a truck of military equipment between two bases outside a combat zone.

Quoting KiwiRob (Thread starter):
Makes logical sense if you ask me.

As much as is practical, it does.

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 3):
for example people should have fire insurance on their homes, if your property catches fire the fire department would put it out for you since you've paid for the service, if you didn't have fire insurance you property would burn.

That's precisely how some fire departments used to work: they would compete with each other and be paid by insurance companies. That model is impractical today, so I'm fine with such things being run by municipalities or a government enforced monopoly similar to utilities. Some are also pseudo-government organizations similar to school districts which are tax funded but have their own boundaries rather than being based on city limits.
Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
 
RussianJet
Posts: 5983
Joined: Sat Jul 21, 2007 4:15 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Thu Jan 10, 2013 9:58 pm

My goodness. There are just some things that shouldn't be placed in the hands of private companies whose only motive is to make a financial profit. Services vital to basic survival and law and order are among them. I also consider basic utilities vital to support life to be in the same category, but that ship has long since sailed in the UK. A big slice of a large water company is owned by a Chinese comopany, for example.
✈ Every strike of the hammer is a blow against the enemy. ✈
 
BMI727
Posts: 11300
Joined: Mon Feb 02, 2009 9:29 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Thu Jan 10, 2013 10:05 pm

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 6):
Services vital to basic survival and law and order are among them.

We all need to eat, but that doesn't stop dozens of private companies from trying to sell me a burger and a Coke.

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 6):
I also consider basic utilities vital to support life to be in the same category

Competition should be allowed if it is practical, otherwise it will have to be a monopoly of a private company with government control of prices.
Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
 
RussianJet
Posts: 5983
Joined: Sat Jul 21, 2007 4:15 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Thu Jan 10, 2013 10:14 pm

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 7):
We all need to eat, but that doesn't stop dozens of private companies from trying to sell me a burger and a Coke.

Very true, but then 'food' as an entity represents a far more complex and diverse commodity than simply, say, the supply of drinking water.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 7):
Competition should be allowed if it is practical, otherwise it will have to be a monopoly of a private company with government control of prices.

The prices end up rising more than inflation anyway, and the regulation of these industries costs the tax payer a bloody fortune. At least that's how it seems to have worked out here in Britain.
✈ Every strike of the hammer is a blow against the enemy. ✈
 
User avatar
DeltaMD90
Posts: 8928
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 11:25 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Thu Jan 10, 2013 10:52 pm

Quoting Aesma (Reply 1):
which must add a lot of overhead

I don't think so... instead of a large entity with vast overhead you have a bunch of little overhead... and while independent, police resources are definitely shared. I worked for a police department for an internship and I frequently communicated with other agencies to get the job done.

There are pros and cons, but honestly, I don't think we could have a unified police force in America. We are much too big. Can you imagine rolling all the EU countries' police into the EU Police force?

We have cons in America but I like the rights given to states. California and Georgia are so different in many respects they might as well be two different countries, but I can easily choose not to live in CA and live in GA instead and be an American. Conversely, there are people who much prefer CA over GA

That was slightly off topic, but to the OP: even most of the biggest states' rights people believe the government has essential functions. Very, very few people (I can't even think of one) talk about privatizing what you are saying
 
Ken777
Posts: 10149
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 5:39 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Thu Jan 10, 2013 11:35 pm

Quoting KiwiRob (Thread starter):
since a large number of US citizens are against free public health why not privatise other existing free public services?

The last thing we need is shifting public services to private businesses. First problem is that it tends to let politicians slip those services to friends - sort of like Cheney & Halliburton at the start of the Iraq War. We don't need more Good Buddy Favors than we already have.

The second problem is that it results in a shift to lower paid workers - something has to give in order for the Good Buddies to make Good Money.

Lastly, it reduces the force of the public's voice. We just had some local politicians sigh a 14 year agreement with a new company for trash services. I have yet to talk with anyone who actually believes we are better off. The really queer part of this deal (besides sorry service) is that you have to call some poor service rep who works for the city, not the company forgetting to pick up your trash.
 
User avatar
Aesma
Posts: 14045
Joined: Sat Nov 14, 2009 6:14 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 12:23 am

Quoting DeltaMD90 (Reply 9):
There are pros and cons, but honestly, I don't think we could have a unified police force in America. We are much too big. Can you imagine rolling all the EU countries' police into the EU Police force?

No, I didn't mean it like that, I do think state police could be the main police in every state though. My country (France) is between Texas and California size wise, and we have a national police (well, two, one civilian and one military for the countryside). No municipal police or sheriff or whatever would be tasked with elucidating a crime. Same with the judiciary, they're all on the national payroll.

About the EU I do think we need an equivalent to the FBI.

Quoting DeltaMD90 (Reply 9):
We have cons in America but I like the rights given to states.

Well it's nice in theory but I find it really strange, executive powers is good, having the power to manage day to day stuff, where can things be build, where to allocate money, crisis management, etc., but having 50 laws on every subject is ridiculous in my opinion. In some ways laws in the EU are more unified than in the States !
New Technology is the name we give to stuff that doesn't work yet. Douglas Adams
 
User avatar
DeltaMD90
Posts: 8928
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 11:25 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 12:55 am

Quoting Aesma (Reply 11):
but having 50 laws on every subject is ridiculous in my opinion. In some ways laws in the EU are more unified than in the States !

I see it a lot like the EU. Do you want one EU set of rules? Do you want Poland's rules to be the same as France's? As Sweden's? Greece's?

People in CA have their laws and they're happy with that, Georgians have their laws and are happy with them. If you blend the two together people will be less happy
 
User avatar
fr8mech
Posts: 8163
Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2005 9:00 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 1:45 am

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 10):
We just had some local politicians sigh a 14 year agreement with a new company for trash services.

I haven't had the "city" pick up my trash since I moved away from NY. I, and all my neighbors, pay a local contractor to pick it up. It cost me about $18/month, including recycle and year-round yard waste. They've never missed a pick-up and they've never not picked something up.

Quoting Aesma (Reply 11):
but having 50 laws on every subject is ridiculous in my opinion. In some ways laws in the EU are more unified than in the States

But, unless you live in a border town/city and constantly cross the border (which I do) you are subject only to 1 set of laws...unless you throw in federal law on some subjects....and federal regulation on other subjects.
When seconds count, the police are minutes away, or may not come at all.
It’s hard to win an argument with a smart person, but it’s damn near impossible to win an argument with a stupid person. ~B. Murray
Ego Bibere Capulus, Ut Aliis Sit Vivere
 
WestJet747
Posts: 1950
Joined: Sat Aug 06, 2011 7:43 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 2:05 am

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 5):
Stop handing out money and food stamps and give people a better education instead, which they can either use or not.

I'm on board with this   

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 5):
A fully privatized military would just be a band of thugs

Then you have Academi (formerly known as Blackwater).

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 10):
The second problem is that it results in a shift to lower paid workers

Yes, but that is a result of overpaid public workers, not underpaid private workers. The labour market operates in a way that if there are people willing to do a certain job for x dollars, then that job will pay x dollars no matter who does it. So if a job is "low paying", it's because qualified people are willing to do that job for that wage. Nobody to blame but the population.

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 10):
Lastly, it reduces the force of the public's voice.

Not true. Privatized services are still contractors of the government. So long as your tax dollars are channeled to a service, you will have a voice.

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 10):
We just had some local politicians sigh a 14 year agreement with a new company for trash services. I have yet to talk with anyone who actually believes we are better off.

You guys got a real bum deal then. Toronto just privatized half their garbage collection at an annual savings of $1 mil. From what I've heard, service is equal to what it was before (after the expected issues experienced during the first couple weeks of the crossover phase).

Quoting DeltaMD90 (Reply 9):
I don't think we could have a unified police force in America

It's because your states are so damn small! It's impossible to get 50 entities on the same page. Whereas in Canada, we're geographically much larger, but are split into only 13 provinces and territories, so it's simpler for the RCMP to operate with provincial police.

Quoting DeltaMD90 (Reply 12):
People in CA have their laws and they're happy with that, Georgians have their laws and are happy with them. If you blend the two together people will be less happy

Very well said. There's not one uniform culture across the United States, so what's right in one area may not be right in another.
Flying refined.
 
Pyrex
Posts: 4821
Joined: Thu Aug 25, 2005 7:24 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 3:33 am

Quoting KiwiRob (Thread starter):
Fire Department

There already are plenty of private or volunteer fire services. Often similar service at a lower cost, although it depends on your area, obviously. And the reason fire services exist is fundamentally not to save your property if you screw up and leave a space-heater on overnight, but to get your ass out of there and prevent it from spreading to other people's property.

Quoting KiwiRob (Thread starter):
Police
Quoting KiwiRob (Thread starter):
military

Now you are touching on the only vital skill of a government - the monopoly of violence, to guarantee law and order, which are essential for the pursuit of freedom. The problem starts when politicians and bureaucrats try to divert that monopoly of violence to further personal interests and perpetuate themselves in power.

Quoting KiwiRob (Thread starter):
Education

Should have been privatized long ago. That is not to say that all kids should not have access to an education, of course, but that education does not need to be provided by the state. Introduce school vouchers across the board and just shut down public schools.

Quoting Aesma (Reply 1):
So every city has its own system, pension schemes etc., which must add a lot of overhead.

Move all public employees to 401(k)s as pretty much everyone in the private sector has these days and presto, problem solved. Or of the government wants to play insurance company, it should be capitalized as an insurer (i.e., much higher capital requirements) - what is good for the goose, etc.

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 3):
Paid for by local taxes is still a public service, for example people should have fire insurance on their homes, if your property catches fire the fire department would put it out for you since you've paid for the service, if you didn't have fire insurance your property would burn.

Nah, current system is much better... Something happens to your house during a catastrophe and you don't have insurance? Don't worry, FEMA will write you a check. Oh, you've been paying for home insurance for 20+ years? Tough luck, sucker, your neighbor gets his anyway.

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 6):
basic utilities vital to support life to be in the same category

Wait, I thought lefties were all for conservation of limited natural resources and all that, and now you want cheap water and electricity so people can consume it at will?

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 7):
We all need to eat, but that doesn't stop dozens of private companies from trying to sell me a burger and a Coke.

Truer words have never been said.

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 10):
First problem is that it tends to let politicians slip those services to friends

Yes, because the public sector is a perfect example of things being done transparently, efficiently and without nepotism.

Quoting Aesma (Reply 11):
About the EU I do think we need an equivalent to the FBI.

Yes, that is exactly what we need, another faceless, unaccountable European bureaucracy.

Quoting Aesma (Reply 11):
In some ways laws in the EU are more unified than in the States !

You mean Brussels has been more successful at getting people to bend over than Washington?
Read this very carefully, I shall write this only once!
 
StarAC17
Posts: 3987
Joined: Thu Aug 07, 2003 11:54 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 4:08 am

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 14):
Quoting Ken777 (Reply 10):
Lastly, it reduces the force of the public's voice.

Not true. Privatized services are still contractors of the government. So long as your tax dollars are channeled to a service, you will have a voice.

From the OP I reckon the point isn't to contract out public services to private companies through your tax dollars which is common place.

I think the point is why not pay taxes at all and pay a fire department or police department directly for their services if you need them. If you are not a shareholder in that company you don't have a say and you are simply a customer, you can take your money elsewhere but realistically how much competition would there be.

Quoting KiwiRob (Thread starter):
the Fire Department, Police, Education and the military, since a large number of US citizens are against free public health why not privatise other existing free public services?

I really don't like the remark that other countries get "free" health care because it isn't free and we pay taxes to fund the system. I know your know this but it just not true.
Engineers Rule The World!!!!!
 
WestJet747
Posts: 1950
Joined: Sat Aug 06, 2011 7:43 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 4:36 am

Quoting StarAC17 (Reply 16):
I think the point is why not pay taxes at all and pay a fire department or police department directly for their services if you need them.

You're right. I lost that focus over the course of the discussion.

But with that said, I like the practice of contracting-out. It's proven that contracting out is cheaper than the government handling the services themselves.

Quoting StarAC17 (Reply 16):
I really don't like the remark that other countries get "free" health care because it isn't free and we pay taxes to fund the system. I know your know this but it just not true.

And even then it's not all "free". I was actually in the hospital the other night, and the woman in the room next to me had to pay $170 for an air-cast and crutches.
Flying refined.
 
User avatar
DocLightning
Posts: 22134
Joined: Wed Nov 16, 2005 8:51 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 5:34 am

Quoting DeltaMD90 (Reply 9):
That was slightly off topic, but to the OP: even most of the biggest states' rights people believe the government has essential functions. Very, very few people (I can't even think of one) talk about privatizing what you are saying

I give you the Tea Party and the Libertarians. Roads and Military only, they say. Maybe Law Enforcement. They say the rest should be private. Why do roads get a special pass, I have no idea.
-Doc Lightning-

"The sky calls to us. If we do not destroy ourselves, we will one day venture to the stars."
-Carl Sagan
 
User avatar
seb146
Posts: 23462
Joined: Wed Dec 01, 1999 7:19 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 5:46 am

Look at how PG&E does business and you will understand why I say "HECK NO!!!!" very loudly. Privatise police and fire. Fine. They will be for-profit. So, when they want to upgrade trucks, uniforms, stations, etc, they simply bill citizens higher rates. Those citizens who refuse to pay will not be helped if they are robbed or their house burns down. Plus, the bill for everyone else will go up because "we need to educate the public" or some such nonsense.

I use PG&E as an example becuase after San Bruno, they raised everyone's rates because they had to check and upgrade the gas lines they had already allegedly upgraded. Then, they had to upgrade the trunk lines and pay lawsuits so they raised everyone's rates again. Then, they raise everyone's rates again because of water mains. Then, they raised everyone's rates because some inspection needed to be done that should have been done but wasn't. Then, they raised everyone's rates because some people are going completely off the grid and using solar and wind and being self-sufficiant. And PG&E are charging those people to be off the grid.

The exact same thing WILL happen if police, fire, and EMT are privatised. Mark my words.
You bet I'm pumped!!! I just had a green tea!!!
 
BMI727
Posts: 11300
Joined: Mon Feb 02, 2009 9:29 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 6:15 am

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 8):
Very true, but then 'food' as an entity represents a far more complex and diverse commodity than simply, say, the supply of drinking water.

Oil is a commodity, and yet we have oil companies. Ditto for natural gas. And let's not forget the water companies, from the stuff coming out of the tap all the way to those selling spring water. Mostly non-government entities.

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 8):
The prices end up rising more than inflation anyway, and the regulation of these industries costs the tax payer a bloody fortune.

Shareholders of such companies are entitled to a fair return on their investment.

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 10):
First problem is that it tends to let politicians slip those services to friends - sort of like Cheney & Halliburton at the start of the Iraq War. We don't need more Good Buddy Favors than we already have.

The second problem is that it results in a shift to lower paid workers - something has to give in order for the Good Buddies to make Good Money.

How can you be against something because it costs too much and because it doesn't cost enough at the same time?

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 14):
Then you have Academi (formerly known as Blackwater).

Be careful not to conflate two different uses of private organizations when it comes to things like this.

The first is the one that is impractical, in that citizens cannot go hire their own armies. Nobody gets a choice of who defends them, it's all just the US military, which we all pay taxes for. The closest one can get is private security to protect installations or bodyguards but those are not on the same level as military organizations.

The second use of private companies, which I generally support, is the military using subcontractors to carry out their missions, which is where much of Blackwater and the like's work came from. If chartering a plane is a better way to get a company of soldiers where they need to go versus using a USAF plane, then so be it. There's nothing special about wearing the uniform that makes someone more capable of serving mediocre food to soldiers than a glorified lunch lady working for a contractor. Considering the cost of (well earned) things like retirement benefits, the GI Bill, and retirement benefits I tend to think that it's better to keep the military doing things that actually require the military because soldiers are expensive.

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 18):
Why do roads get a special pass, I have no idea.

Some don't, just look at the Chicago Skyway and that new highway in Texas.
Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
 
User avatar
Kiwirob
Topic Author
Posts: 13380
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2005 2:16 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:34 am

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 5):
Education is an essential government function that should be expanded while cutting off welfare.

So should health care

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 5):
That's precisely how some fire departments used to work: they would compete with each other and be paid by insurance companies. That model is impractical today,

Bingo it didn't work for the fire services and it really isn't working well for the healthcare industry, maybe it's time to say private healthcare (unless you want to opt out of the public system) as a model is impractical today.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 5):
A fully privatized military would just be a band of thugs, and is a practical impossibility.

Isn't that what the military is anyway, especiually the pointy end?

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 10):
The last thing we need is shifting public services to private businesses.

Isn't that what's happened with the healthcare industry, a public serivce that is now a private service which not everyone has access to?

Quoting StarAC17 (Reply 16):
I really don't like the remark that other countries get "free" health care because it isn't free and we pay taxes to fund the system. I know your know this but it just not true.

In essence it's not free it comes out of my taxes, but I don't pay anything extra for it, I didn't in NZ and I don't in Norway. I've had two knee operations, one in NZ the other in Norway, both done under the public health service. I also dislocated my shoulder when on holiday in Scotland a few years back, this was sorted out in a couple of hours by A&E and didn't cost me a penny, nor did I need to claim on my travel insurance.


IMO govts only have three essential services they need to provide, law & order (defence fits into this category), education (including university) and health services, everything else fits into the nice to have but could be provided by private industry on a user pays basis.
 
BMI727
Posts: 11300
Joined: Mon Feb 02, 2009 9:29 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:51 am

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 21):
So should health care

No it shouldn't. The reason is the simple and necessary connection between responsibility and control. If the government has to cook the meal, they have to shop for the groceries, and that is control I am not willing to cede.

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 21):
Bingo it didn't work for the fire services and it really isn't working well for the healthcare industry, maybe it's time to say private healthcare (unless you want to opt out of the public system) as a model is impractical today.

Fire protection is generally a lot cheaper, and there is not a considerable portion of my fellow citizens who insist on spraying their house with gasoline in between cigarettes.

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 21):
Isn't that what the military is anyway, especiually the pointy end?

Yes, but controlled by the government. If I had to pick my own military protection like you might pick a private school or an insurance plan I could pick one like the Japanese military that won't intervene outside the borders or I could pick the one that's hell bent on nuking all the towelheads they find.
Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
 
Pyrex
Posts: 4821
Joined: Thu Aug 25, 2005 7:24 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 1:30 pm

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 20):

How can you be against something because it costs too much and because it doesn't cost enough at the same time?

Liberal hypocrisy, Have you never seen a newspaper article criticizing banks for not lending enough money and lending too much money in the same sentence?

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 21):
maybe it's time to say private healthcare (unless you want to opt out of the public system) as a model is impractical today.

Hmm... no it is not. And if I could opt out of the public system entirely I would, but it is not like they would ever let me have my tax money back, is it?
Read this very carefully, I shall write this only once!
 
FlyPNS1
Posts: 5535
Joined: Wed Dec 01, 1999 7:12 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 1:41 pm

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 20):
Considering the cost of (well earned) things like retirement benefits, the GI Bill, and retirement benefits I tend to think that it's better to keep the military doing things that actually require the military because soldiers are expensive.

The problem is that the contractors have proven to be even more costly. You'll notice that the DoD procurement and acquisition costs have skyrocketed over the years. The DoD no longer has any ability to control these costs and can't even control most of the contractors. Effectively, companies like Lockheed Martin and others already run our military.
 
User avatar
Kiwirob
Topic Author
Posts: 13380
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2005 2:16 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 1:45 pm

Quoting Pyrex (Reply 23):
Hmm... no it is not. And if I could opt out of the public system entirely I would, but it is not like they would ever let me have my tax money back, is it?

Depends on where you live, the public systems in NZ and Norway IMO provide fast efficient excellent service.
 
User avatar
flyingturtle
Posts: 6063
Joined: Mon Oct 31, 2011 1:39 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 2:15 pm

Quoting StarAC17 (Reply 16):
From the OP I reckon the point isn't to contract out public services to private companies through your tax dollars which is common place.

We then run into a big problem. If a private company has a contract with the government, the contract is often kept confidential - or even secret. In Germany the federal authorities have contracted the road tolls (for trucks) out to a firm called Toll Collect, and guess who had the right to read that contract... only the members of the parliament. And they had to swear not to divulge any part of the contract they have read.

And now the development of the system cost billions. And with long delays the system was put into effect, thus costing the government billions in lost road tolls.

I see no problem with contracting out services to private entitites, but the contracts must be publicly available, and citizens must have a right to file a lawsuit against such contracts. Under the "right" circumstances, such contracts only serve to bleed the taxpayer while the government can say... well, then we did everything right.

As can be seen with the "opening" of the BER airport.

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 25):
Depends on where you live, the public systems in NZ and Norway IMO provide fast efficient excellent service.

  


David
Reading accident reports is what calms me down
 
WestJet747
Posts: 1950
Joined: Sat Aug 06, 2011 7:43 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 6:09 pm

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 22):
No it shouldn't. The reason is the simple and necessary connection between responsibility and control. If the government has to cook the meal, they have to shop for the groceries, and that is control I am not willing to cede.

But it has proven to be a success elsewhere. Is that little bit of control worth the additional costs?

Quoting FlyPNS1 (Reply 24):
The problem is that the contractors have proven to be even more costly. You'll notice that the DoD procurement and acquisition costs have skyrocketed over the years. The DoD no longer has any ability to control these costs and can't even control most of the contractors. Effectively, companies like Lockheed Martin and others already run our military.

There's two reasons for that: 1) Contractors have been scamming the system since day 1 because it's easy to do so, and 2) The government lacks a comprehensive competitive bidding process. Government, not just the US, seem to have one or both of those problems in some areas of their services. Only in the US's case it's costing them trillions of dollars that they'll never get back.
Flying refined.
 
RussianJet
Posts: 5983
Joined: Sat Jul 21, 2007 4:15 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 6:21 pm

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 20):
Oil is a commodity, and yet we have oil companies. Ditto for natural gas. And let's not forget the water companies, from the stuff coming out of the tap all the way to those selling spring water. Mostly non-government entities.

Yeah, and I don't like the way that works either.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 20):
Shareholders of such companies are entitled to a fair return on their investment.

Not really relevant when I don't think the basics of life should be sold for profit. There shouldn't be any darn share holders.
✈ Every strike of the hammer is a blow against the enemy. ✈
 
BMI727
Posts: 11300
Joined: Mon Feb 02, 2009 9:29 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 6:53 pm

Quoting FlyPNS1 (Reply 24):
You'll notice that the DoD procurement and acquisition costs have skyrocketed over the years.

The military buys more expensive stuff these days. Fixed price makes sense for some things, but try it for others and see how fast the contractors can run.

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 27):
Is that little bit of control worth the additional costs?

Yes. If the government pays for healthcare, it's only a matter of time before someone realizes being unhealthy is expensive. So then something has to be done, like tax junk food or offer tax credits for gym memberships. Or worse. There's no efficient way to make the government responsible for people's health without giving them control of the inputs and no reasonable person should be willing to do that.

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 28):
Not really relevant when I don't think the basics of life should be sold for profit. There shouldn't be any darn share holders.

Enjoy the bread line, comrade.
Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
 
RussianJet
Posts: 5983
Joined: Sat Jul 21, 2007 4:15 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 7:14 pm

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 29):
Enjoy the bread line, comrade.

Well *comrade*, Germany still has the bulk of its water supply in public hands - not sure I'd put them on the breadline. Meanwhile, UK water infrastructure continues to crumble and become less efficient, with prices ever rising. Lining the pockets of shareholders is the type of thing that is putting the people of this country on the breadline, along with rail ticket price-rises of around 40% in real terms since privatisation for absolutely no improvement in service (in many cases worse in fact), and of course your other favourite - oil - paying nearly £1.50 for a litre of petrol (yes a lot is tax, but it's a proportion of cost). Oh yeah, it's all good in the world of shareholders and cartels. And let's not forget the insane sums we have to spend on layer after layer of regulation, which is often shown to fail anyway and rarely results in meaningful consumer protection.
✈ Every strike of the hammer is a blow against the enemy. ✈
 
BMI727
Posts: 11300
Joined: Mon Feb 02, 2009 9:29 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 7:19 pm

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 30):
along with rail ticket price-rises of around 40% in real terms since privatisation for absolutely no improvement in service (in many cases worse in fact),

Especially considering that none of their costs like fuel or labor might be increasing...oh, wait.

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 30):
Oh yeah, it's all good in the world of shareholders and cartels

So you're just totally against private enterprise and rewarding shareholders for taking risks with their money. They're entitled to a return, but in the case of oil companies it's hardly a monopoly. Go choose another one, but there's a good chance it won't be any cheaper because things just cost what they cost.
Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
 
User avatar
flyingturtle
Posts: 6063
Joined: Mon Oct 31, 2011 1:39 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 7:22 pm

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 20):
Shareholders of such companies are entitled to a fair return on their investment.

No. As a shareholder you have the right to elect the board of directors, which in turns decides how profitable the company will be. If the shareholders agree, the stock company can be run as a charity.

In the only court case about this question (Dodge vs. Ford Motor Company), the Supreme Court found that the minority shareholders (the Dodge brothers) were entitled to receive dividends, but in the end this violated the will of the majority shareholder, Mr. Ford. IMHO, this judgement was a disservice to free entrepreneurship.


David
Reading accident reports is what calms me down
 
RussianJet
Posts: 5983
Joined: Sat Jul 21, 2007 4:15 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 7:33 pm

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 31):
Especially considering that none of their costs like fuel or labor might be increasing...oh, wait.

You will certainly not find that wages have gone up by even half of 40% - and note that the rise is in real terms, taking full account of factors like inflation. Fuel is an issue for sure, but only one factor. and a large proportion of the rail network is electrified - there is no way electricity if 40% more expensive compared to 1993 (in real terms). No, it just doesn't add up - and frankly there isn't a person in this country who doesn't know it. Rail re-nationalisation regularly commands a clear majority in favour in opinion polls and the whole thing is widely viewed as a disaster. Sorry if you think it makes us all communist for realising that a crap service for far more money at a time when environmental factors should result in more encouragement to use public transport is a poor result, but then maybe you have other criteria for success, such as how much of a profit the company turns running a service that many have no option but to use.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 31):
So you're just totally against private enterprise and rewarding shareholders for taking risks with their money

No, I didn't say that - I take that position in regard to the fundamentals of life such as water, railways etc. I do not believe the vitals of life should be sold to us for profit by private entities. Sure you have to draw the line somewhere about what you consider to fall into that category, but as a starting point I would certainly include the most basic infrastructure a country depends on such as water, energy, rail and roads.
✈ Every strike of the hammer is a blow against the enemy. ✈
 
WestJet747
Posts: 1950
Joined: Sat Aug 06, 2011 7:43 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 7:45 pm

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 29):
Yes. If the government pays for healthcare, it's only a matter of time before someone realizes being unhealthy is expensive. So then something has to be done, like tax junk food or offer tax credits for gym memberships. Or worse. There's no efficient way to make the government responsible for people's health without giving them control of the inputs and no reasonable person should be willing to do that.

Being unhealthy has been expensive for a long time, yet we aren't seeing the tax issues you mention. Granted, we don't have an obesity epidemic to deal with, so I'm sure it would be more expensive for you guys, but it works for us.

My ideal solution is a hybrid of the two. The government should continue to provide healthcare to those who need it, while private enterprise should be allowed to operate in that space as well. This way, those who can afford the private healthcare can take advantage of it, while those who can't will have the public healthcare to fall back on.

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 30):
of course your other favourite - oil -

If you can find an effective way to make oil a public service, I'll nominate you for the Nobel Prize in Economics.

Quoting flyingturtle (Reply 32):
No. As a shareholder you have the right to elect the board of directors, which in turns decides how profitable the company will be. If the shareholders agree, the stock company can be run as a charity.

If the shareholder isn't entitled to a return on their investment, what is the incentive to invest? Maybe I'm just an asshole, but I've never invested out of the goodness of my heart.

Quoting flyingturtle (Reply 32):
IMHO, this judgement was a disservice to free entrepreneurship.

How so?
Flying refined.
 
RussianJet
Posts: 5983
Joined: Sat Jul 21, 2007 4:15 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 7:51 pm

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 34):
If you can find an effective way to make oil a public service, I'll nominate you for the Nobel Prize in Economics.

Hehe, it's a deal.    Oil is an extremely tricky one and I admit there is no easy way to produce and distribute it fairly, but the fact is that a cartel of countries essentially sets its price. It is fairly unique in that it's a commodity we all need, focused in the hands of relatively few. Nonetheless, I struggle to believe that oil companies only turn a 'fair' profit. They can basically ask for what they want, because we have to pay. It may be difficult to think of a better solution, but that doesn't make the status quo any more palatable.
✈ Every strike of the hammer is a blow against the enemy. ✈
 
User avatar
Kiwirob
Topic Author
Posts: 13380
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2005 2:16 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 7:57 pm

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 34):
My ideal solution is a hybrid of the two. The government should continue to provide healthcare to those who need it, while private enterprise should be allowed to operate in that space as well. This way, those who can afford the private healthcare can take advantage of it, while those who can't will have the public healthcare to fall back on.

This is exactly how it works in NZ, you can have private health insurance if you want it, many companies offer it as part of your employment package, but not having private health insurance isn't going to stop you from seeing a doctor if you need to.

Frankly I was shocked to hear how expensive it is to have a baby in the US, we never paid a cent for our first who was born in NZ and the second two born in Norway.
 
Ken777
Posts: 10149
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 5:39 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:30 pm

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 13):
They've never missed a pick-up and they've never not picked something up.

We have been calling about a missed collection about 25% of the time. The previous system was far more professional, had some great time in motion performance and was less expensive. This one is totally incompetent - I have yet to meet someone who feels the program is at least as good as what they replaced.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 5):
Stop handing out money and food stamps and give people a better education instead, which they can either use or not.

So sprinkle some pixie dust around and end the profound poverty that many in this country live in. And all that food - let 'em eat cake?

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 13):
It cost me about $18/month, including recycle and year-round yard waste.

We just had a 70% increase in costs - up to $24 a month. More if you have more than a 32 gallon.

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 14):
Yes, but that is a result of overpaid public workers, not underpaid private workers.

As long as we have a minimum wage below the poverty line public workers will appear "overpaid".

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 14):
The labour market operates in a way that if there are people willing to do a certain job for x dollars, then that job will pay x dollars no matter who does it.

The Great Recession has been pretty effective in forcing people to lower wage jobs. Sounds great until you start looking at all the benefits taxpayers will be handing out.

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 14):
So long as your tax dollars are channeled to a service, you will have a voice.

Sure. I can see that very clearly in my new trash service.

Quoting Pyrex (Reply 15):
Introduce school vouchers across the board and just shut down public schools.

You don't even want to contemplate the chaos that would attract. And the law suits when the better private schools don't allow in the various problems or low learners. That type of approach both lowers the standard of education in a state and increases trial lawyer incomes.

Quoting Pyrex (Reply 15):
Move all public employees to 401(k)s as pretty much everyone in the private sector has these days and presto, problem solved.

That is basically pouring money into Wall Street with Conservatives pushing hard to reduce oversight of the financial sector. While the financial sector would be drooling over that potential I really hope it doesn't happen. There is no reason not to put these workers on Social Security for part of their retirement - let them make that FICA contribution like I did.

Same with health care. Why pour tax dollars into private insurance companies when you can simply put them on Medicare. It costs LESS and does the job just as well as over priced health insurance.

Quoting Pyrex (Reply 15):
Don't worry, FEMA will write you a check. Oh, you've been paying for home insurance for 20+ years? Tough luck, sucker, your neighbor gets his anyway.

Every neighborhood I have lived in has had a large percentage of homes still being paid for - therefore mandatory insurance paid with your mortgage payment. Those of us who have paid off our houses are not going to put our homes at risk without insurance. My home insurance in on an auto deduction along with cars and health policies.

Quoting Pyrex (Reply 15):
Yes, because the public sector is a perfect example of things being done transparently, efficiently and without nepotism.

Good Buddy politics are everywhere, but at least we get to vote periodically. Handing services over to long term Good Buddies can last a pretty long time - like 14 years in our trash service. That is a REAL Good Buddy deal.   
 
BMI727
Posts: 11300
Joined: Mon Feb 02, 2009 9:29 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:37 pm

Quoting flyingturtle (Reply 32):
No. As a shareholder you have the right to elect the board of directors, which in turns decides how profitable the company will be. If the shareholders agree, the stock company can be run as a charity.

For companies as a whole, you're right, but the game changes a bit if you're talking about public utilities which often function as a government enforced monopoly. They operate with government regulated prices which must be high enough to cover costs and provide a return to shareholders but low enough to not be gouging customers.

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 33):
Rail re-nationalisation regularly commands a clear majority in favour in opinion polls and the whole thing is widely viewed as a disaster.

The whole thing is widely viewed as a disaster because the whole thing is a disaster. As an American I can clearly attest to that.

So let's think about this: it can't be run at a profit, prices are high and service is poor. What to do? Just stop. Nobody can make money providing the service at a reasonable cost so just quit and save the money. Amtrak should have been gone decades ago.

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 33):
Sorry if you think it makes us all communist for realising that a crap service for far more money at a time when environmental factors should result in more encouragement to use public transport is a poor result

If the only way for something to be successful is for it to be subsidized, then it means it cannot be successful.

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 33):
No, I didn't say that - I take that position in regard to the fundamentals of life such as water, railways etc.

Railways is a fundamental of life? Are you kidding me? This is exactly the slippery slope that needs to be avoided. Let's see: food, government housing, water, electric, gas, public transport, internet, fuel, and Lord knows what else all ends up being part of a giant blob of bureaucracy. No thanks.

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 34):
Being unhealthy has been expensive for a long time, yet we aren't seeing the tax issues you mention

Then the system is unfair and inefficient. How is it fair that a marathon runner and a fatass pay the same taxes when the latter is going to require far more of the services that tax money provides?

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 35):
I admit there is no easy way to produce and distribute it fairly

Sure there is: pay for it. You have the money, you get the oil.
Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
 
RussianJet
Posts: 5983
Joined: Sat Jul 21, 2007 4:15 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:46 pm

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 38):
Just stop. Nobody can make money providing the service at a reasonable cost so just quit and save the money. Amtrak should have been gone decades ago.

Do you mean just do without the railways, full stop? The road system here simply couldn't cope,

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 38):
Railways is a fundamental of life? Are you kidding me?

Absolutely. The relationship to the railways here is not the same as in the US. In the crowded UK, particularly the southeast, railways are absolutely vital for people's daily lives and the economic health of the country. Owning a car is far more expensive here, and the rail network developed and utilised to a far higher degree (in relative terms - your country is of course far larger). Domestic aviation is far less developed here too. We simply cannot do without the railways here. They are of supreme national importance and should be treated so. It's embarrassing that we pioneered rail use and built our industrial strength on the back of it, and now have a rail system that comes a very poor second to our neighbours - but I guess that's a different thread.
✈ Every strike of the hammer is a blow against the enemy. ✈
 
StarAC17
Posts: 3987
Joined: Thu Aug 07, 2003 11:54 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:48 pm

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 27):
Quoting BMI727 (Reply 22):
No it shouldn't. The reason is the simple and necessary connection between responsibility and control. If the government has to cook the meal, they have to shop for the groceries, and that is control I am not willing to cede.

But it has proven to be a success elsewhere. Is that little bit of control worth the additional costs?

In Canada where we live we actually get more control than insured Americans do. We get to choose our doctors and our hospitals as we please and our doctors don't work for the government, they are usually all self-employed (especially GP's). From what I know many US insurers tell you which doctors and specialists to see but this might not be the case with every policy.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 38):
Then the system is unfair and inefficient. How is it fair that a marathon runner and a fatass pay the same taxes when the latter is going to require far more of the services that tax money provides?

Because everyone has skin in the game up here and while it would be nice to be able to tax unhealthy people it is a logistical nightmare to do so and that is why unhealthy lifestyle habits are taxed such as cigarettes and booze.

Furthermore the fit marathon runner could get cancer and then he will cost more that the fay guy (who might be perfectly healthy)
Engineers Rule The World!!!!!
 
BMI727
Posts: 11300
Joined: Mon Feb 02, 2009 9:29 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 9:08 pm

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 39):
Do you mean just do without the railways, full stop?

If they cannot be run in an economically sustainable way, yeah.

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 39):
The road system here simply couldn't cope,

If people start clamoring to get off crowded roads, then they will have no problems paying what rail travel actually costs.

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 39):
railways are absolutely vital for people's daily lives and the economic health of the country.

If it's that important, it wouldn't need to be subsidized.

Quoting StarAC17 (Reply 40):
Furthermore the fit marathon runner could get cancer and then he will cost more that the fay guy (who might be perfectly healthy)

True, but why not let private insurance account for the difference in risk between one person and another? Why force citizens into an unfair, inefficient one-size-fits-all health system where some pay for services they don't receive and others get services they don't pay for?

Quoting StarAC17 (Reply 40):
Because everyone has skin in the game up here and while it would be nice to be able to tax unhealthy people it is a logistical nightmare to do so and that is why unhealthy lifestyle habits are taxed such as cigarettes and booze.

That's exactly the sort of thing I detest: the government exercising control in people's lives through taxation. It shouldn't be anyone's business but mine what I eat, drink, or smoke.
Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
 
StarAC17
Posts: 3987
Joined: Thu Aug 07, 2003 11:54 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 9:19 pm

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 41):
That's exactly the sort of thing I detest: the government exercising control in people's lives through taxation. It shouldn't be anyone's business but mine what I eat, drink, or smoke.

You are free to do those things but decades of medical research has come to the conclusion that smoking and drinking affect ones health long term. So knowing this and the fact that smokers and heavy drinkers will cost the general public more in healthcare why not tax the people who make these bad decisions as a deterrent to discourage that behaviour and to pay for the extra costs that people who smoke and drink cost soceity. At the end of the day its your choice to pay that tax and its not getting forced upon you.

Note I am not really in favour of any taxes on food except for possibly soft drinks because every day medical research says something is bad and then a week later they say that is ok but this is now bad.
Engineers Rule The World!!!!!
 
BMI727
Posts: 11300
Joined: Mon Feb 02, 2009 9:29 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 9:27 pm

Quoting StarAC17 (Reply 42):
So knowing this and the fact that smokers and heavy drinkers will cost the general public more in healthcare why not tax the people who make these bad decisions as a deterrent to discourage that behaviour and to pay for the extra costs that people who smoke and drink cost soceity.

Because the government should absolutely not be telling people what they should or should not eat or drink. It's ridiculous and it's a restriction of freedom. My life, my decision, and I'll deal with the consequences without the government telling me to eat my veggies.

The only way to make a national healthcare system work is to take away some freedom, and that price is too high.
Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
 
RussianJet
Posts: 5983
Joined: Sat Jul 21, 2007 4:15 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 9:47 pm

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 41):
If people start clamoring to get off crowded roads, then they will have no problems paying what rail travel actually costs.

They do pay what it costs, and then some. Sorry, none of it is any excuse for accepting a poorly run system when the fact is several comparable neighbours prove without doubt it can and should be done properly. People do pay for rail because often the roads are not a particularly viable alternative for their commute, but the amount they pay and the service they receive is not acceptable. This is because it is poorly managed, which is not an indicator of the need or lack thereof for the system in the first place. There is no genuine market choice for the public here, and it is therefore difficult to apply the usual market force arguments. The rail franchise system is expensive to the tax-payer, overly complicated, inefficient and very slow and bad at replacing bad and failing service with something better. It should be state owned and run because it is fundamental to the support of our economy, and contrary to what you assert it is certainly not failing because it's not needed or there is some mythical viable alternative to this huge part of our national infrastructure.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 41):
If it's that important, it wouldn't need to be subsidized.

At present it is subsidised by tax-payers, who then also pay exorbitant fares to line the pockets of private companies. No, run for the people by the state is the way forward here and always was - and no, that doesn't mean I want to see a communist revolution.
✈ Every strike of the hammer is a blow against the enemy. ✈
 
Ken777
Posts: 10149
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 5:39 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 10:14 pm

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 38):
So let's think about this: it can't be run at a profit, prices are high and service is poor. What to do? Just stop. Nobody can make money providing the service at a reasonable cost so just quit and save the money. Amtrak should have been gone decades ago.
Quoting BMI727 (Reply 38):
f the only way for something to be successful is for it to be subsidized, then it means it cannot be successful.

Taking both together, pulling subsidized rail results in what? More demands for both roads and ATC (and airport access) that will take, gasp, tax dollars to deliver.

I support the concept of looking at the costs of ENDING government support and comparing it to the costs of continuing it.

If you look at the NorthEast pax rail traffic, it does make sense to have it there. Commuters are the first factor, but shifting all the cargo carried on those lines would also be shifted to roads.

And, as far as poor service goes, have you flown lately?

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 38):
Railways is a fundamental of life?

Am I agreeing with you again? Scary!

Railways are a great approach to move bulk off the roads - people or cargo. Compared to the costs of eliminating it, it is lso cost effective.
 
BMI727
Posts: 11300
Joined: Mon Feb 02, 2009 9:29 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 11:27 pm

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 44):
They do pay what it costs, and then some.

No they don't. If they did there would be no need for subsidies.

It's like saying that if a business got some free money, it wouldn't be a failure. Well, that means the business is a failure.

For the most part, people supporting subsidies for public transport are liars. They jump up and down talking about how vital it is, the huge numbers of people that will use it, and so on. The catch, of course, is that if it were as important and popular as they say it is, they wouldn't need subsidies.

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 44):
It should be state owned and run because it is fundamental to the support of our economy, and contrary to what you assert it is certainly not failing because it's not needed

If people are not willing to pay the costs to use it without taxpayer subsidy, then it indeed is not viable. There's no way around that.

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 45):
More demands for both roads and ATC (and airport access) that will take, gasp, tax dollars to deliver.

Maybe. This would be a good time to point out the privately run roads and successful privatized airports all around the world. Plus, pushing more traffic towards other modes of transportation might help to give those pieces of infrastructure critical mass to be sustainable.

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 45):
If you look at the NorthEast pax rail traffic, it does make sense to have it there.

Then spin it off as a private company and see how it does without subsidies.
Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
 
RussianJet
Posts: 5983
Joined: Sat Jul 21, 2007 4:15 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Fri Jan 11, 2013 11:59 pm

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 46):
No they don't. If they did there would be no need for subsidies.

But the point I was implying is that it all ultimately comes from the same person. The public who buy tickets are the same people who pay taxes.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 46):
It's like saying that if a business got some free money, it wouldn't be a failure. Well, that means the business is a failure.

But as I have already pointed out, this should not be considered a 'business' in the true sense of the word. It's a public service, and should be treated as one. Not everything can or should be treated as a money-making exercise! Do roads turn a profit? No? Oh sugar, we'd better scrap them then. I'm still trying to work out how being able to get the densely-populated country to work every day in some semblence of an efficient manner isn't considered essential.....

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 46):
The catch, of course, is that if it were as important and popular as they say it is, they wouldn't need subsidies.

Non-sequitur. German railways are significantly subsidised and mostly nationally owned and run, and they are extremely well-used, highly efficient and also very affordable. The economic, social and environmental benefits of these factors are huge. It helps support the entire country and aids in the maintenance of a coherent society, and it does so very well. That is most definitely all worth subsidising if you need to. Privatising railways in countries like the UK is like selling the family china - a small, very short-term gain, then you need to rent it back again just to eat. Idiocy.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 46):
If people are not willing to pay the costs to use it without taxpayer subsidy, then it indeed is not viable. There's no way around that.

People are willing to pay the costs of maintaining our important rail infrastructure - but they're not willing to pay twice or even thrice over for it, with rising fares, subsidies to private companies and ridiculously expensive and toothless regulatory bodies. They would rather pay directly from public funds, with all money raised from fares directly reinvested - and this is what people here have indicated they want. i would rather my taxes went directly to the benefit of the economy and the country as a whole than in any small part directly into the pockets of private companies who fleece us and provide us with worsening service.
✈ Every strike of the hammer is a blow against the enemy. ✈
 
WestJet747
Posts: 1950
Joined: Sat Aug 06, 2011 7:43 pm

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Sat Jan 12, 2013 1:17 am

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 37):
So sprinkle some pixie dust around and end the profound poverty that many in this country live in. And all that food - let 'em eat cake?

I think you missed BMI727's point...He's saying that if you redirect the resources used for handouts, and put it into a better education system for those people, they'll be more self-sufficient and won't need the handouts that our tax dollars pay for.

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 37):
As long as we have a minimum wage below the poverty line public workers will appear "overpaid".

Another fun fact about the labour market is that if you raise the minimum wage too much, jobs will actually be lost.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 38):
Then the system is unfair and inefficient. How is it fair that a marathon runner and a fatass pay the same taxes when the latter is going to require far more of the services that tax money provides?

I get that it's "not fair" that the unhealthy people don't pay their share while the healthy people pay more than they use. But what about accidents? Shit happens to healthy people too. I got appendicitis last year (which you can get no matter how healthy you are) and I went to the hospital, had the surgery to remove my appendix, and spent a night in the hospital, all without having to fork what would probably amount to thousands on top of thousands of dollars down in the States.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 41):
Why force citizens into an unfair, inefficient one-size-fits-all health system where some pay for services they don't receive and others get services they don't pay for?

Because the safety net that it provides the citizens of my country is one-size-fits-all. Every can go about their day without worrying about how they're going to pay for healthcare if they happened to slip on some ice or have a heart attack.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 43):
The only way to make a national healthcare system work is to take away some freedom, and that price is too high.

That's the thing, Canadians don't cry blood over our "freedoms". Also those Constitutionalists you see in the gun threads and women's rights threads, we don't have those. If we lose a tiny bit of freedom for the greater good, no problem.

I've discussed so many things with you before that I know nothing I say will change your mind, and I don't expect it to because you only really know your own system. But so long as the system functions well, the populous is happy with it, and it isn't bankrupting the nation, then it's a pretty damn good system, even if it might be imperfect.
Flying refined.
 
Ken777
Posts: 10149
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 5:39 am

RE: Why Not Privatise Existing Public Services?

Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:12 am

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 46):
The catch, of course, is that if it were as important and popular as they say it is, they wouldn't need subsidies

It's a balance between costs to use and the costs of options. In some places (like NYC) the infrastructures (including parking) could not handle commuters if there was not rail available.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 46):
Then spin it off as a private company and see how it does without subsidies.

That's all we need - shifting jobs to political good buddies, lower pay for the middle class, but the Romney World does really well - especially with profits sent off shore or used in other games.

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 48):
I think you missed BMI727's point...He's saying that if you redirect the resources used for handouts, and put it into a better education system for those people, they'll be more self-sufficient and won't need the handouts that our tax dollars pay for.

Reality is that the hard poverty areas will continue to be there regardless of the money that "might" go into education.

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 48):
Another fun fact about the labour market is that if you raise the minimum wage too much, jobs will actually be lost.

Amazing argument when you look around the country at all the employer nanny care - both expensive and a tax free ride we can no longer afford.

And jobs are obviously going over seas, but you can accurately if it is because of above minimum wage, or the over riced nanny care.

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: GalaxyFlyer, hoons90, stackelberg and 72 guests

Popular Searches On Airliners.net

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos