Home | About | Donate

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


#1

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

Richard Eskow

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.


#2

We all knew this was coming but now we know the extent of the underlying con that is so very typical of Trump. His $200 billion infrastructure bill (that he calls a Trillion Dollar Bill) will, of course, cut funding for us and raise funding for them !

Them?

Yeah them! The 1%. The new nobility who no longer call themselves dukes, princes, counts and barons but act exactly like Nobles did in days of yore! They don't call us peasants even though with this corporate giveaway infrastructure con, they are attempting to privatize the commons (Enclosure as it once was called)!

You suddenly realize that they are very much intending to widen the gulf between the haves and the have nots. The Corporate Coup versus the Commons! To this end, they will make us pay them for everything, one way or another! Heck with a $206 billion cut in education funding combined with an expanded voucher program then we the tax payer will pay to send their kids to well endowed private schools (vouchered) while our public schools make do with less funding. Cuts in school lunch programs too! Rich kids in private schools do not need school lunch programs.

Who knew that there was a hidden slogan for the Republicans (and the collaborationist Dems who vote with them) and that it was going to be - Stomp the Peasants!

Way too traditional if you ask me!


Our Best Shot at Meeting Paris Goals? Make Energy Public
#3

The supposed president posing with a gold plated shovel perhaps for shovelling gold plated $#!*.

Time to dig in and augment the building of networking methodologies and models for local self reliance.

Institute for Local Self Reliance - models for rules, community broadband and much more
National Farmers Union - links in with legislative activism for family farming
Friends Committee on National Legislation - just one of many letter writing alert organizations in the public interest aiding in tracking and lobbying for the public good
ProPublica - more journalism in the public interest

More and more coverage of the real contributions of indigenous peoples. Unlearning the genocidal lies hammered by the system is a also a treasure needed in order for essential alliances. Want to get a handle on abuses by agribusiness? Consider becoming familiar with activism in defence of indigenous peoples most impacted and help strengthen their voices. Here's one example: the Guarani in Brazil

The documentation and activism sphere is alive and well. Sourcewatch lists progressive organizations. And that does not even begin to scratch the surface. The oligarchs and kleptocrats haven't even begun to learn the real meaning of the health and strength of community.


#4

Headline sez: "... Don't Let Trump's GOP Privatize America"

You mean the bits Cheney's GOP missed?


#5

Things like the DMV can work better when privatized. Others like the military work better when kept in the public sphere. Sold out politicians are uniquely unqualified to make these decisions in our name.

Direct Democracy


#6

Let's get very clear, Trumpie is a mere con-man figurehead for the R's in this privatization scam to turn our commons into pots of money for those who already have more than they will ever need.
Trumpie and the R's along with the Koch Bros et al.
The wrecking ball is in full view and it ain't pretty by any metric. Theft in broad daylight.
Privatization has been creepy-crawling along for a while.
Schools, roads, water services, privatizing our federal lands for oil/gas/coal/uranium, not to mention blatant abuse regarding native American land/mineral rights/water rights etc, etc.
It makes me sick at heart.


#7

I am so sick of hearing the word "stakeholder"! It conjures up a vision of someone who is indeed holding a stake, and who is about to pound it through the heart of what remains of our democracy.

Understand this! These Public assets are just that: PUBLIC! They belong to the citizens of this country. They were paid for with the sweat and treasure of many generations. They are NOT Trump's property, to do with whatever he pleases! He and his minions are NOT royalty, they are public servants! If the job of Public Servant does not fit with the orthodoxy so dear to them, then they need to find another job!


#8

"Privatization is a permanent solution to a temporary problem" ?

Looks more like permanent solutions to a problems contrived by the fake news industry to rationalize privatization ?


#9

The phrase 'a permanent solution to a temporary problem' had it's origination in discussions about suicide. The parallels are blatant.


#10

Let's suppose all the rural State and Federal forestland is privatized. All the recreational uses such as hiking, hunting, berry picking, mushroom hunting, and many other public uses, even driving on roads and trails now free to anyone, would end. Whoever contracts with the government for these lands would be free to close them off and then start charging anyone for access.
This might occur because a State might decide they need money for other purposes, and since these lands don't bring in money sitting idle, allowing them to be controlled privately could be seen as a win-win situation. The State would likely still own the resources on or under the land, so they could receive income from that at times. For the rest of us, we would end up paying.


#11

BULLSHIT!!  Check out the stats on privatized highways, water systems, parking meters, etc.  The whole point of democracy is to give ALL citizens an equal say in everything that is of common interest — The Commons.   In the 'Olden Days' that was mainly a community pasture and a shared well. Today it means highways, clean water, health care, and, most recently, the internet: ALL of which should be available to ALL, and paid for – EQUITABLY – by ALL.


#12

The infrastructure of the US is paid for with our taxes. We pay taxes to the federal gov't and a certain (dwindling) portion is used for public schools, roads, national parks, etc. We pay property taxes and sales tax to our state and local gov't. These taxes are used for the states' portion of the funding for these same items, plus local items, like public libraries and local parks, etc. Now imagine all these items are privatized; the roads, bridges, parks, and dams are owned in whole or in part by private companies. The schools are private charter schools run by private corporations. This means your tax dollars go to for-profit companies that can charge you whatever the market will bear to use the same facilities and resources you used to have access to for free (you paid your taxes and the use of the common areas are free thereafter). The federal and state gov't just became nothing but a middle-man, one that collects your taxes and then hands that money over to a private company. When the federal gov't gives ownership over to private companies, the state governments have been left with no choice about the matter. They must also hand your taxes over to most of these private entities, since state and local gov't do not have the resources to "go it alone" on all the items the federal currently helps the states with. The gov't - both federal and state - has to answer to you, the tax-payer. The corporations do not. They - the corporations - are not elected and cannot be forced to consider some oath to "serve the people". They may, or may not, feel some compunction to maintain the assets they now own (experience proves they seldom feel that need), and in any case, will charge ever-increasing amounts of money to do so. That is the very crux of the idea behind "free market capitalism", after all.

What these privatizers are setting up is a really sweet deal for the corporations: they get to own the commons, extract fees and tolls from the public FOREVER AFTER and are guaranteed permanent income from your tax dollars as well as from those user fees they charge on top of the taxes.

And that is how you get what we call a "corporatocracy". The corporations now get your tax money forever, can collect user fees on top of that, are allowed to make unlimited profit, and don't have to answer to the public at all because they aren't elected.

[Note: Yeah, I KNOW. We got there awhile back, what with the no-bid contracts and subsidies the gov't hands out like candy, and the fact that our "representatives" already think of the corporations first. But what this privatization scheme does is hand over title and deed to the corporate world officially, legally, and binding. Then it's too late.]


#13

What if ALL citizens decide that the DMV would work better privatized and the military would work better run democratically?


#14

If Betsy DeVos succeeds in implementing her overlords' plans to destroy what's left of our public schools, I wouldn't be surprised at all if a majority of the resultant dumbed-down citizenry supported privatizing the DMV.  OTOH, a privatized military (think Blackwater/Xe, her brother's 'security' firm) is much more likely than a demo- cratic one.  (IIRC, our present military is – at least in theory – democratically controlled by means of congress- ional oversight.  But since congress itself has essentially been privatized and brought under the control of the Military-Industrial Complex, there's no point in our debating the issue – it's already a done deal!)


#15

Kudos for your raising of these crucial points RE Trump/GOP's accelerated privatization of the Commons -- a scandalous process of legalized looting that's receiving scant intellectual/moral challenge from so-called progressives in Congress, except occasionally for opposition by Bernie Sanders' and a tiny few others.
FWIW, even Enlightenment-era economist/Daddy of Capitalism, Adam Smith himself, affirmed the necessity & propriety of Public Goods within [his version of] a capitalist market system, followed later by many neo-Enlightenment capitalist thinkers who expanded the Public Goods concept to allow for democratic (political, not just economic) determination of what can or should constitute Public Goods.
Today's prominent, USA rightwing economists & pols are, clearly, nothing other than scarcely-camouflaged anti-Enlightenment neo-Royalist goons, bent on rolling back the framework of Western political economy to Medieval times.
Yet, where are the needed public thinkers of the left, to strongly challenge and thwart this backward slide into human social primitiveness...? Amazingly, their numbers and media visibility, Today, are effectively Nill and Null.

.


#16

Would you force your ideas on the public dictatorially or would you submit to its democratic will even when you think it's BULLSHIT.


#17

Gosh, 'boy - I'm sorry if my reply wasn't clear enough, "If Betsy DeVos succeeds in implementing her overlords' plans to destroy what's left of our public schools, I wouldn't be surprised at all if a majority of the resultant dumbed-down citizenry supported privatizing the DMV."  (In which case the DMV would get privatized.)   And if a majority (notice I didn't even say "all") of our dumbed-down citizenry votes to elect Tweetle-Dumb as Presi- dunce - that's just how it is.  In Amerika, the Majority rools - as you well know.   Akchooly, it's still the Golden Rule that's in charge – "them what's got the gold makes the rools" is pretty hard to argue with when them what's got the gold own Congress and the White House outright, a five-to-four majority of the Supreme Court, and nearly all of the major communications media.

Where is Teddy Roosevelt, now that we REALLY need him?


#18

AlexG,

It's not just the Republicans, although they are masters in the art of grift to be sure. My own Representative in the House is one John Delaney, who has the temerity to call himself a "progressive Democrat" (thereby nullifying both the words "progressive" and "Democrat"). He has been pushing his public-private infrastructure plan since he was first elected to Congress, and now has his proposed bill under consideration with some damn committee or another. His bill, in fact, sounds like the entire basis for the Trump infrastructure plan and on his current website, Delaney brags about how his ideas are being incorporated "in bipartisan fashion" into the Trump plan. Delaney is, BTW, a former businessman who is one of the wealthiest members of both the House and the Senate.

I wrote an article about Delaney's "public-private infrastructure plan" when he first proposed it back in 2013. I am providing a link to my own article, not to promote myself ( I am nobody, but aside from my own thoughts, my post has some links in it to some really topnotch economic writers), but because it explains the basic plan being offered, and exposes some of the faulty reasoning and misleading wording that the plan utilizes. Because the Republican plan and the Delaney plan appear to be basically the same thing, you might find it interesting to read. Bear in mind it was written in 2013; no doubt Delaney has nuanced some of the details to better match what the Republicans want, but from what I have been able to suss out about Trump's plan, the basics are the same.


#19

And foreign countries, like China, are buying up American highways and collecting the tolls and profits. Isn't that cool?


#20

If they privatize the air traffic control system, I'll never fly in this country again. If I have to fly to Europe or Asia, I'll drive to Canada and take one of their airlines.