Why PRIVATIZING is NOT the Answer
Let’s get clear about what the word “PRIVATIZE” really means. The GOP LOVES this notion, and they peddle it as how “free market ideas” and “competition” create productivity and innovation. What it REALLY means is “structure it so that a few people can get VERY rich off of it.” I am NOT anti-business. I am a big fan of free enterprise. But some PUBLIC functions should NEVER be privatized because creating a profit-driven structure would directly impede the service-oriented nature of the enterprise. Private prisons is a perfect example. When our prisons were re-structured to create shareholders, private owners, and well compensated executives, they also found ways of increasing prison populations and duration of sentences. Privatization became a way for public tax dollars to be syphoned into the hands of private citizens. When that happens, an incentive is created to find new and better ways to funnel that money into private hands. IT WAS NEVER THE GOAL OF OUR PRISON SYSTEM TO CREATE MORE INMATES. And somehow, when a profit motive was baked-into the process, that is PRECISELY what happened.
Private businesses have ONE and ONLY ONE function: To make money for their stakeholders. If they give good service or make good products, it is because doing so drives profits, and because COMPETITION requires quality for survival. If they can make good money without making good products or providing good service, they will. The goal is ALWAYS about driving profit, which usually means increased revenue and decrease overhead. But when it comes to PUBLIC services, in which there is no MARKET COMPETITION TO FORCE productivity, efficiency, quality or good service, the ONLY driving factor is revenue generation. So the notion that a private Medicare system would somehow be better than a public one is ABSURD. Public Medicare only has the purpose of providing benefits as well as it can. Private Medicare would be ALL ABOUT MAKING A SMALL NUMBER OF PEOPLE AS RICH AS POSSIBLE. Question: How on earth does that translate to better care for people who have no option or other system to rely on and who can’t take their business elsewhere? Answer: IT DOESN’T!!