Commentary

Kitchen Logic: Don’t Let Trump’s GOP Privatize America

(COMMON DREAMS) Richard Eskow, June 9, 2017 — If you needed a new stove or refrigerator, you wouldn’t give the keys to your kitchen to Olive Garden, then pay them to let you eat. You’d be opening your wallet for the rest of your life. Unfortunately, that’s the kind of logic Donald Trump and his party are using to give away our shared wealth.

Privatization—the transfer of government-owned resources to private interests—is a permanent solution to a temporary problem. Governments use it to get an expense item off their books, but citizens often find themselves saddled with all sorts of additional costs for years to come.  It’s mostly deficit hawks who oppose any kind of spending by government who praise this kind of move.

Billions of dollars worth of U.S. railroads, highways, buildings, and other public assets have already been turned over to the private sector in recent decades, permanently depriving the public of its ownership rights. Any revenues they produce now go their new private owners, who are far less responsive than democratically elected governments.

“This massive giveaway of public resources would not save money. In most cases, it would merely force Americans to pay for them in different ways: through tolls and other user fees, through the charges that businesses pass on to customers in the form of higher prices, and through the added cost of subsidizing private-sector profit.”

Source: Kitchen Logic: Don’t Let Trump’s GOP Privatize America | By Richard Eskow | Common Dreams