OK, would someone please explain a couple of things to me???
- Why is it that socialized medicine is reputed to be bad because it eliminates consumer choice and the free market laissez-faire economy will sort itself out, with the best competitors/ companies rising to the top like cream or whatever BUT private utility companies are given government subsidies and monopolies in different municipalities? In other words, the government closes the free market to favor for-profit natural gas companies such as People's Energy or oil companies such as Halliburton or mercenary companies like Blackwater-- but that's okay and not threatening to undermine all that capitalism purports to stand for? Why and how?
- Why is it that now that our Democratic Republic has been converted to a Corporatocracy -- primary product oil -- half the people I know no longer can afford luxuries like natural gas for hot water and heat?
- Is it true that People's Energy can now turn off your heat in the winter if you haven't paid you bill? If so, why should they get government subsidies within a non-competitive market?
- Among other things, are our tax dollars now going to be used to:
- Steal oil from the Iraqis for American-owned private corporations?
- Fight wars for oil companies -- who have made record profits the last 3 years running.
- Give no-bid government contracts to oil companies, who make record profits, disappear billions of dollars and then move to Dubai?
- Build warming centers (read homeless shelters) for people who have homes, but who have had their heat shut off in the dead of winter because of the astronomical increases in the cost of energy and 6 years of economic depression?*** With all of this oil our government is killing for, we can't even get some heat?
If we're going to have a mixed economy -- and you have to if your nation can be found anywhere on a map of reality -- why can't we face the fact that social welfare will ALWAYS have to exist to prevent rioting and starvation and maintain social stability. (Oh, and it's also THE RIGHT THING TO DO, but I digress.) We justify and allow corporate welfare at a much greater cost. And with corporate welfare -- such as government grants and subsidies or when the feds let corporations off the hook for things like taxes or environmental, health and safety regulations -- the citizenry has to foot the bill at least twice.
- Once, to provide government contracts to large, for-profit companies. (example: Halliburton's multi-billion dollar contracts in Iraq)
- Twice, to clean up the fall out. (Another 150 billion dollars to prolong this endless quagmire -- a quagmire that was exacerbated by poor policy planning after the invasion in 2003, policy enacted by companies like Halliburton, for example.)
- If -- for example -- Halliburton makes record profits from this invasion which just keeps going, will Halliburton be footing the bill for the health care of the vets who come home with chronic and severe health problems while fighting this war for oil profits? Perhaps when hell freezes over?
I don't think that capitalism is the healthiest way to run and sustain a society as large and as heterogeneous as ours, however since that is the system we are using, shouldn't we stick to its basic principles -- like a free market, no corporate subsidies, tariffs on goods manufactured in other countries, etc., etc.? Or if we are going to support a system of corporate welfare, why can't we also support a system of civic welfare and institute socialized medicine, support for sustainable (and affordable) energy sources, childcare programs, etc., atc., etc.?
Am I missing something?
***(This is the City of Chicago's current solution to the disconnected heat situation -- send those without heat to warming centers. How about, cut off all contracts for People's Energy if they can't use their exclusive regional contract to help heat the community?)