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Privatization Nightmare: 5 Public Services That Should Never Be Handed Over to Greedy Corporations

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Omaha Steve Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-19-11 08:26 AM
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Privatization Nightmare: 5 Public Services That Should Never Be Handed Over to Greedy Corporations

AlterNet / By Dave Johnson

Why we all pay more when essential services are privatized.
November 17, 2011 |

Who gains and who loses when public assets and jobs are turned over to the private sector?

The corporate right endlessly promotes privatization of public assets and public jobs as a cash-raising or cost-saving measure. Privatization is when the public turns over assets like airports, roads or buildings, or contracts out a public function like trash collection to a private company. Many cities contract out their trash collection. To raise cash Arizona even sold its state capital building and leased it back.

The justification for privatization is the old argument that private companies do everything better and more efficiently than government, and will find ways to cut costs. Over and over we hear that companies do everything for less cost than government. But it never seems to sink in that private companies dont do things unless the people at the top can make a bundle of cash; if the CEO isnt making millions, that CEO will move the company on to something else. When government does something they dont have to pay millions to someone at the top.

So how do private companies save money? What costs do companies cut that government doesnt? When you hear about cost-cutting here is something to consider: what if by costs the privatizers are talking about us?

FULL story at link.

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secondwind Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-19-11 08:28 AM
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1. The Koch Brothers have they eyes on the power plants in Wisconsin.
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PoliticAverse Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-19-11 08:35 AM
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2. Someone hasn't been paying attention... 5 - Red light cameras...
"But while public law enforcement is interested in justice and fairness"

Anyone thinking the rise in non privately-contracted red-light cameras has to do with 'justice and fairness'
needs to do some more research.

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Peace Patriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-19-11 09:59 AM
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3. The article leaves out the big one--PRIVATIZED VOTE COUNTING!
Jeez. Are we stupid or what?

One, private, far rightwing-connected corporate--ES&S, which bought out Diebold--now controls 70% of the voting systems in the U.S., using 'TRADE SECRET' programming code--code that the public is forbidden to review--to 'count' some of the votes, and disregard others, with virtually no audit/recount controls!

The article mentions privatized...

...prisons, parking meters, park maintenance, public zoos, courthouse security guards, psychiatric staff, food assistance and health care for low income individuals, road construction, state-owned energy assets, public employee health plans, traffic law enforcement (including privatized speed and traffic cameras), highways, airports, water systems, trash collection, bridges, parking garages, nursing homes, traffic schools, "and, of course, schools"...

...but FAILS TO MENTION OR ADDRESS how all these rightwing privatizers are getting 'elected.'

It seems so obvious to me, starting with this Scumbag Congress (detested by 75% to 80% of Americans or more) right down to the governors and state legislators! Half the states DO NO AUDIT AT ALL of the vote counting--mainly because they have no paper ballot--nothing TO count, just electronic blips on a screen controlled by 'TRADE SECRET' code. The other half may have a paper ballot but do only a miserably inadequate 1% audit (automatic comparison of ballot with machine totals). 99% of the votes are never seen or counted by human beings. Virtually all vote counting is done OUT OF THE PUBLIC VENUE. And the corporate culture of secrecy has thoroughly invaded all aspects of this process. We have LOST CONTROL of our voting system!

This privatized, electronic voting system is MADE TO ORDER for fraud. It was put in place quickly, with a $3.9 e-voting boondoggle from the Antrhax Congress in the same month--the same month!--as the Iraq War Resolution. Privatized vote counting then spread like wildfire throughout the land, to ensure Bush-Cheney's 're-election' and continuation of the Iraq War boondoggle. It was spread by corruption--all that e-voting booty and filthy lobbying--but it was never mandated. The federal government does NOT require electronic voting. That is the loophole through which paper ballots and PUBLIC vote counting can be restored without an insurrection. This can still be done at the local/state level, with sufficient outcry and local organization.

But if progressive writers like this one continue to ignore the biggest, dirtiest and most secretive assault on our democracy ever mounted--the privatization of the very counting of our votes--we are NEVER going to get our democracy back. No other reform is possible without transparent vote counting! It is the bottom line of democracy.

We want to restore public services? We've got to start with the most fundamental one of all--the counting of our votes!

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eppur_se_muova Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-19-11 10:10 AM
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4. Net recommendation: 0 votes (Your vote: +1)
At times I have to wonder about the unrec "feature" ...
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