[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: OT: Politics [Was:Social Contract]

Hash: SHA1

On Wednesday 03 May 2006 07:51 it was so written:
> On May 2, 2006, at 11:23 PM, Curt Howland wrote:
> > On Tuesday 02 May 2006 22:40, Paul Johnson <baloo@ursine.ca> was
> >> Portland, Oregon is a great argument against privatization of
> >> critical infrastructure.  For the longest time, it was the
> >> poster child of privatization, with Portland General Electric as
> >> the local, private, power utility and residential power
> >> monopoly...
> >
> > Excuse me, but how can "privatization" and "monopoly" be used to
> > refer to the same action? A legally mandated monopoly is
> > hardly "privatization", it remains a legal arm of the government.
> Well, they're pretty much orthogonal terms. "Monopoly" describes 
> the market structure whereas "privatization" describes a change in
> the ownership structure.  Changing ownership doesn't necessarily
> change the market structure.

Exactly. The phone company maintained a legal monopoly, granted by 
government, which would prosecute anyone who tried to compete with 

Do I have to mince and couch words, to say "it's like" it remains an 
arm of the government?

> The purchasing company has willingly signed a contract to provide a
> specific service to the City of Portland.

Unfortunately, the people of Portland were effected and not just the 
Portland city government. Having someone else sign a contract to 
which I am bound by force sounds far more like an arm of government 
than any private firm I've ever heard of.

> It would only be a legal 
> arm of the gov't if the gov't has seats on the company's 
> governance board (e.g. BPA, TVA, Postal Service, and Port Authority
> of NY&NJ)

Merchantilism is a very pernicious policy.


- -- 
September 11th, 2001
The proudest day for gun control and central 
planning advocates in American history

Version: GnuPG v1.4.3 (GNU/Linux)


Reply to: