Ladies and gentlemen brace yourselves I’m actually going to link to a post written by a syndicalist. OK I’m joking, I don’t care what somebody’s political orientation is when I like to it on this site. On a serious note though I found an excellent writeup dealing with a topic of privatization that has always bothered me, who gets the money from the sale of “public” works:
Taxes entail coercion; this is why they’re not called donations. Accordingly, one might think self-styled advocates of free markets and smaller government, Ayn Rand aficionados especially, would be cognizant of the fact that, when it comes to a moral claim over the things that said taxes go to — from telecommunications to transit systems — the coerced taxpayer would have the strongest case for ownership.
You’d be wrong, of course. When it comes to downsizing the state, most conservatives and libertarians have a raging hard-on for privatization, by which they mean the government auctioning off taxpayer property to the highest private bidder. The problem with this approach, from a Freedom! and individual rights perspective, is that those who were forced to invest in the state entity to be auctioned off are left with next to nothing to show for it, usually some multinational corporation instead swooping in to pick it up at pennies on the dollar.
This has always been an issue to me. I’m all for privatization (gee could you have guessed that one) but I’m against the government getting the money from sales of “public” works. The fact of the matter is “public” works are funded through stolen… I mean taxpayer money. Throughout the list of any “public” work taxpayers are the ones who foot the bill for building and maintaining the work. Yet when the government decides it’s time to privatize the system (a good thing) they auction off the work and keep all the money for themselves (a bad thing). Were the government honest that money would be equally divided amongst the taxpayers in the form of either shares or money. If we payed for the damned thing we should get our money back when it’s sold off. Obviously this will never happen as government is none to keen on the whole idea of returning stolen money.