BeesKnee5 wrote:I'm not sure the logic holds that the source of wealth has to come from the service provided.
As usual you make good points. The provided services cost a lot of money. Ideally the services should make enough revenue to pay for themselves and therefore the services can be provided in perpetuity. As a general rule the private sector is more efficient than the government when providing goods or services for the population. I don't think this is disputed by anyone.
By all means encourage capitalism on luxuries or optional and value added items.
I see no capitalist benefit to the people it's meant to enrich by monetising basic health, education, housing and utility needs.
Another great point. Since Medicare’s inception in 1966, private health care insurers have processed medical claims for Medicare beneficiaries.
I have to assume the government sees some value in contracting out services. This does not mean that the services are totally private. I am no scholar on why Sweden decided to privatize the delivery of some benefits. I have to assume they were looking for efficiency.
Social housing is a real bugbear of mine. Basic housing with rents covering the cost of upkeep helped to get mine and many other families out of poverty and capable of having stable education and employment, leading to being able to buy a house and afford more than just the basics. Capitalising and selling it off led to private landlords buying it up and renting it out at far higher prices and short term leases. This is now being paid for by the state in the rocketing cost of housing benefit.
I agree! However, there is paradox in America. Homelessness is increasing in places like Seattle, LA, San Francisco, etc. Sadly, many of the homeless are addicted to drugs or have mental illness. Many are not necessarily minorities that were always poor. Many come from a middle class background and are white. Providing free housing will not change drug addiction and mental illness. However, providing housing for the fraction of homeless that are not addicted or mentally ill should be a PRIORITY. I would go ALL OUT for this!
Otherwise, I really have no solutions for the homeless that are mentally ill or the ones that are addicted to drugs. This is clearly a dystopia and I suspect it will get worse. Providing help will not solve the issue of nihilism and despair. Today's society promotes nihilism and I have no solutions. It is no accident that so many depressed young men decide to commit suicide by cop while shooting others. The despair, anger, and depression must be monumental.
The Swedish education system is similar, each student attracts a level of funding, a well run state system looks to provide the same standard of education, whilst a privatised one with no basic standard to build on looks to see how little it can spend to achieve a minimum standard so the rest can be pocketed as profit. This encourages the use of cheaper, less experienced staff and removes any value added aspect that was present (If there is no profit in it then no longer provide it).
Here I disagree-- providing the same standard of education to ALL is a major mistake. Germany and Japan have much better education and they segregare students early on according to talent. Those that are college material are identified and those that are best suited for blue collar professions are also identified. In America we have this idea that ALL should go to college and we are sending people to college that would fare much better as plumbers or electricians. When politicians say FREE COLLEGE for all it sounds like pandering to the ignorant masses. The only candidate that gets this is Amy Klobuchar.
The USA public education system is failing and it is handicapped by regulations and unions. One of my daughters attended a small private Catholic school and the calculus teacher was a retired mathematician and engineer. This teacher was massively enthusiastic, highly intelligent, and dedicated. Sadly, he could never be hired in a public school system because the bureaucracy demands courses in pedagogy and other mindless certifications. This is very sad because good science and math teachers are rare in the public schools. Anyone that is good in those subjects heads to a STEM job. Her physics professor was also a retired gentleman that was 200% dedicated. These retired people are dying to find something useful to do and sadly the public school system has no use for them.
This is the inherent problem with capitalism at the most basic level, the state either has to spend a fortune regulating it to ensure you don't end up with Victorian slum landlords or it provides a basic service which forces capitalist to beat if they want to be profitable.
Capitalism is highly imperfect, but somehow people always compare capitalism to an ideal utopia. The essence of capitalism is freedom to exchange services or goods and a form of government that protects private property and contracts. A capitalist is always looking out for him or herself and in the process of doing this he has no choice but to provide a better mousetrap at the lowest cost to stay competitive. That is it! Anything else is crony capitalism. It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest.
Is the system perfect? No!!!! Capitalism does not change the natural hierarchy of competence among humans because there is no equality.