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News Privatize everything!

  1. Dec 7, 2009 #1

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    I see a lot of areas where Republicans want to privatize stuff, such as health care. Therefore, why not privatize the police? You'd get excellent coverage from your police insurance, provided you had paid all of the premiums on time and in full, and you didn't have a preexisting condition, like having a key lock to your car instead of a combined combination-key lock. Of course, if you forgot to pay for a month, or if your windows weren't made of reinforced glass, your claim would be denied. It would be great! ... for the rich people, at least.

    Police coverage is a right. Health care should be as well.
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 7, 2009 #2
    You're right. Why should some things be in the private sector and other things in the public? This doesn't make sense. Either everything should be private, or everything public.
  4. Dec 7, 2009 #3
    Privatizing the police force doesn't sound like a bad idea. You know , the first local police department was established in Boston in 1838. So at one period in US history, the united state survived with a law enforcement unit for nearly 50 years. I bet private eye detectives would do a better job of cleaning up crime than the public police force. Like health insurance and education, I don't think people should be forced to subsidize a service that they might not want to use .
  5. Dec 7, 2009 #4

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    Whoa, I was trying to show that private health care is a moral wrong, like corruption or MJ. (j/k on MJ) I hate traffic cops, though.

    Can we just privatize them?
  6. Dec 7, 2009 #5
    Whydo you consider it a moral wrong? Don't you think coercion is a moral wrong? It is safe to say that most of us would all agree that it is wrong to rob a person of their earnings and at gun point or by any other means of force is wrong . Well, when the government subsidizes healthcare, then that mean the government uses force to make everyone in the country pay for every other individuals healthcare? Why do you not considered that act immoral when it involves stealing ?
  7. Dec 7, 2009 #6

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    Is it morally wrong to make everyone pay a tax to support universal police? Or should only the people who can afford it get police coverage?

    Think carefully.
  8. Dec 7, 2009 #7
    Who says that only the rich would be able to afford police coverage? There are other commodities , such as housing, food , cars, etc. not covered by the government, yet you see people from a wide range of economic backgrounds buying these commodities and they are not so expensive that only the rich can afford those commodities. Why should the police force be an exception? And as I stated, for 50 years , the US was able to function find without a law enforcement agency and society did not descend into chaos.
  9. Dec 7, 2009 #8

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    I didn't say the rich. I said "those who could afford it". There are people who can't afford housing or a car.
  10. Dec 7, 2009 #9
    Police coverage is not any right. It is a service, just one funded by public tax dollars. Police, firefighters, food, housing, healthcare, education, etc...none of them are rights. They are services.

    Rights are abstract things. For example, you have a right to bear arms. So does this mean we need a taxpayer-funded government program to provide everyone with a firearm? You have a right to freedom of speech. Does this mean we need a taxpayer-funded program to provide everyone with a means to be heard? And so forth.

    You have a right to bear arms, but you do not have a right "to" the arms. You have to buy them (or make them yourself). You have a right to whatever healthcare you can afford. But no one has a right "to" healthcare. You have a right to eat what you ant. But you do not have a right "to" the food. Same with housing.

    To say things like healthcare are a right means you are infringing on the rights of the people who study and acquire the skills to be healthcare providers. You are saying to the doctors and nurses, "Your skills are the rights of others. You yourself thus have no right to charge for our hard-earned skills on the open market."

    Police funding is a local government issue, not federal. And it is a basic service that we find is simply better provided by the public sector as opposed to the private sector. Healthcare is not.
  11. Dec 7, 2009 #10


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    I've been meaning to start a thread on this. We've had a number of discussions where it has been asserted that heath care is a right (and you can read it in the newspaper), but I've never actually seen a real/valid argument made for why this should be true. Perhaps I will here...

    Was that intended to be serious or sarcastic? I can't tell. I wish people would argue inverses via sarcasm less here...

    Obviously, there are things the public can't do for themselves and things they can. Providing for the rule of law has always been a function of government because only government can do it.

    Providing health care has never been a function of government - until very recently - because it is something that individuals can, and in fact mostly must do for themselves. Furthermore, the right to be able to buy yourself better healthcare is not something government should infringe upon.
  12. Dec 7, 2009 #11


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    Really. Do you have any evidence for this, or did you just make it up?
  13. Dec 7, 2009 #12

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    i'm all right with everything except that last sentence. We don't know that... France seems to do pretty good with (cue terror) socialized medicine...

    @russ: i thank you for allowing me to become the catalyst for this topic.
  14. Dec 7, 2009 #13
    I don't get asked that question a lot. I'm so seldom serious.

    I am no richer and no poorer than my neighbor. We both get an apple a day in wages. However, I like to eat my apple in the afternoon, and he likes to eat his in the morning. This worked well for a while, but then the socialists took a look at it one afternoon and noticed that I had an apple and my neighbor did not. In order to fix this problem, they took my apple and divided it in three, one piece for me, one for my neighbor, and one for the socialists. Now everything is fair right?
  15. Dec 7, 2009 #14


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    But that "right" is not infringed upon, nor is anyone planning on doing so...
  16. Dec 7, 2009 #15
    Oh, and if you don't have all the premiums payed ? You get to watch how your wife is raped, you children killed, and the police wont care because you didnt payed in time ? No-one will do anything for you?

    If you are interested in spending some money in personal security and hence having premium personal protection of your person, loved ones and your goods, hire a protection company. Get the bodyguards and ex IDF bald guys to watch over your ***. This is not police. Police's role is not to defend you.

    The main role of police is not protection of individuals , but enforcement of the law and apprehension of criminals, as defined by a certain set of rules who are generically known as "criminal laws"
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2009
  17. Dec 7, 2009 #16
    Yes, the police should be privatized. And when they begin to fail, have the government bail them out in the stock market, and label it outrageous while claiming police should not be funded by the government.
  18. Dec 7, 2009 #17
    From what I understand of the French national health service, it is deeply in debt as is. But besides, so what if they do? Why should we in the U.S. invest massive sums into a government health system when our current experiments with it all seem to explode in cost (Massachusettes and Tennessee for example, or Medicare and Medicaid which are trillions in deficit, both being single-payer, government-run health insurance companies) which would mean we will blow up the debt and deficit to crazy levels, and thus have to implement very high taxes to pay for it, thus hamstringing the economy, when we have among the best healthcare in the world as is, it is just highly inefficient.

    Our system has multiple inefficiencies that have been built up over the years. For example:

    1) The law that prevents people from being able to purchase health insurance across state lines. This artificially limits competition.

    2) Health insurance companies are not subject to anti-trust laws.

    3) The states each have their own mandates of what they require health insurance companies to cover. Imagine for example you go to buy car insurance but the state mandates that the insurance cover things like oil changes, tire rotations, etc...instead of just catostrophic stuff. The price would go up, as the companies would pass the cost on to the consumer.

    Or one could think of it in terms of imagine you go to buy a car, but due to the mandates from the state, you only have available Cadillacs, Mercedes, BMWs, etc...and if you cannot afford these, you can't buy a car.

    Many people just want a Toyota Camry and that's it. This is something the states have to fix, unless we want the Federal government to remove the right to regulate health insurance in this way from the states, and that's a whole other can of worms.

    4) There is the tax incentive for employer-provided health insurance, which is a leftover remnant of WWII price controls. It should either be extended to individuals purchasing health insurance, or eliminated (this is what John McCain wanted to do). It is very controversial though, because it essentially is seen as a tax increase on healthcare. One could maybe offset it with a corresponding cut in another tax though.

    5) Tort reform

    (these next ones I might have some details wrong):

    6) From what I have read, the American Medical Association artificially limits the supply of doctors into the medical profession, which drives up the cost (some say the AMA is a cartel, not sure though; I have read lawyers rant that they wished the law profession did this, so that lawyers could make more $$$).

    7) Pharmaceuticals - the pharmaceuticals industry I believe is dominated by very large, very powerful Big Pharma companies because the industry is incredibly regulated, so there is a lack of competition. I'm not saying to unregulate them, but the lack of competition has to drive up prescription drug costs as well. for example, it can take up to 10 to 15 years just for a new drug to go through FDA testing.

    So imagine, you first research and then create the drug, which costs lots of money, then it has to get through all those years of testing, where it might not make it.

    8) Medicare and Medicaid don't pay hospitals or doctors enough money always, so they have to make up for the lost $$$ by raising prices in the private sector.

    To fix American healthcare, one has to reform these components one at a time.
  19. Dec 7, 2009 #18
    Just like a public defender will have a bagful of cases to address before he gets to your particular case, the police will probably have a handful of investigations that they have to address before they get to your particular investigation. In the first case, a person will hire a lawyer rather than have the public defender deal with his case because the lawyer that they pay will likely address their problem in a faster manner just like a private eye dectective will adress their case in a more efficient manner now that they are being paid.
  20. Dec 7, 2009 #19
    So justice would only be provided for those who are capable of paying the full-time salary of a trained professional from the beginning to the end of their case.
    At least with health-care, there already exist systems which allow the poor to seek health-care. Why not dedicate more money to these systems. Aren't we arguing that everyone has a right to access all forms of treatment no matter how expensive regardless of the cost or effectiveness.

    I agree with one of the above posters that perhaps we should look at easing the regulations that make the development of a new drug so incredibly expensive.

    Personally, I believe that trying to compare health care to law enforcement is too different to make an argument. Really, these two topics are totally different, and only seem related when you point out the small similarities in their functions.

    Lets add a couple more rights to the mix that are only loosely related to health-care:

    Why don't we provide free air travel, as no single group of people should be confined to any particular area of the United States or even the world. To prove that this would be beneficial, think of all the people who's lives would have been saved when Katrina hit the Gulf Coast if they could have just flown out of the area.

    Why doesn't the government provide free computers and internet as no one should be confined from the practically infinite source of knowledge provided by the internet in the convenience of there own homes.
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2009
  21. Dec 7, 2009 #20
    Who says the poor would not be able to afford professional lawyers and professional detectives in the private sector? Certainly if their is a demand for detectives to offer quality service for a cheap price , the free market will grant that demand. Cars and computers used to be a luxury that only the rich could afford, but now it is not so much anymore, thanks to innovated minds who came of with ways to make it cheaper for the public to afford. Most people can afford to travel on airplanes as well and that used to be a luxury targeted only at the rich. The same can be said for any service, whether it be providing computers, beds, or cars. You just need to allow the free market to operate properly as it was originally meant too
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