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Author Topic: Poll: Privitization  (Read 8242 times)

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Offline Ron Wenrich

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Poll: Privitization
« on: August 27, 2006, 08:53:05 PM »
A road has been leased to a foreign firm in Indiana and a bridge in Chicago.  Other states are thinking about joining in.  Do you approve or not?  Poll ends on 9-11-06
Never under estimate the power of stupid people in large groups.

Offline JimBuis

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Re: Poll: Privitization
« Reply #1 on: August 27, 2006, 09:24:20 PM »
Privatization is a veiled way of hiding the size of bureaucracy.  The politicians have tried to tell us in recent years that government has gotten smaller when in fact it is larger.  The number of civil service jobs that have been replaced with privatized jobs that are often held by the same people formerly in the civil service jobs is HUGE!  Additionally, privatization is a way of relieving politicians of any responsibility for the work that is no longer being done as the public would like it to be done. 

IMHO,
Jim
(former Human Resources Manager somewhere in the federal government)
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Offline Mooseherder

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Re: Poll: Privitization
« Reply #2 on: August 27, 2006, 09:25:46 PM »
Sounds like the fleecing of America. I can't think of any Country in the World who would have our best interests except for maybe Britain.  smiley_beatnik
Hopefully these issues come up for Voters and not Politicians.  ban_smiley
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Offline Tom

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Re: Poll: Privitization
« Reply #3 on: August 27, 2006, 09:32:32 PM »
We have no business turning over any of our infra-structure to foreign nations.

What's happened to our Government officials?  Have they lost all sense of National Defense?

Are we now a nation of superlatives with houseboys, butlers and housekeepers?

The whole Idea of having Government duties and Government work crews/departments, is to make sure that our Defense doesn't take a back seat to Union rules, labor weaknesses and foreign governments.
extinct

Offline Bill

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Re: Poll: Privitization
« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2006, 12:01:26 AM »
Heck the only thing govt has to do is keep the peace and make sure we can move around the country. Now what happens when you can't afford to drive on the road - you didn't think those foreigners were going to let you use their roads for free did you ? ? ?  Think I'll go buy a gallon of milk now - milk  $2   tolls  $5   DanG what a great idea .



 >:(

Offline urbanlumberinc

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Re: Poll: Privitization
« Reply #5 on: August 28, 2006, 01:24:08 AM »
Take Aggregate Industries for example, probably the closest thing to a monopoly goin right now.  They funnel massive campaign contributions to politicians of all colors and in turn we pay more than we ought to for concrete.  Where all those dollars go you ask?  To the currency exchange a few times before ultimatley becoming British Pounds.  We just finished a 2 billion dollar highway improvement here in Denver, all of it paved in concrete provided by AI.  So if you think it's impossible that a foreign government could come along and tax us to use our own roads, think again.

Offline flip

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Re: Poll: Privitization
« Reply #6 on: August 28, 2006, 09:48:23 AM »
Yea, our governor sold us out big time.  The whole reason for the sell off is to bail the state out of a major major defecit.  Of course, he inherited the debt from the previous administration and now he's under the gun to turn it around.  Great idea Mitch, sell off a road to the French and the Aussies for something like 90 years.  He's also the same guy that thinks all of Indiana needs to be on the same time, well except for a few counties ::)....idiot.

Sell out our road....hell NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! >:(
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Offline Part_Timer

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Re: Poll: Privitization
« Reply #7 on: August 28, 2006, 10:03:14 AM »
I'm with Flip

I see it like this.  If a company is willing to take it over then there has to be money to be made.  I guess that the goviner is just not smart enough to make it.  OR maybe there just isn't enough money in somones pocket to make it worth their while.
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Offline OneWithWood

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Re: Poll: Privitization
« Reply #8 on: August 28, 2006, 10:14:02 AM »
The 75 year lease included a 3.8BILLION upfront payment.  It is another example of the type of quick fix politicians love.  They get all the glory of instant satisfaction and none of the problems that will occur down the road.
The citizens of Indiana, as well as folks who routinely travel the road, are going to be paying for this for a long, long time.  Of course the gov and many of the folks profiting off of the deal will have acquired enough wealth to insulate them from any discomfort.
There are many examples of this type of maneuvering.  A prime one is the way social security and medicare have been handled, not to mention the national debt. 
The fact that the consortium controlling the road is non-american is actually a very minor issue.  If Uncle Sam needs the road for military purposes I do not think much will stand in the way of seizing it.
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Offline tomboysawyer

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Re: Poll: Privitization
« Reply #9 on: August 28, 2006, 03:16:45 PM »
A road has been leased to a foreign firm in Indiana and a bridge in Chicago.  Other states are thinking about joining in.  Do you approve or not?  Poll ends on 9-11-06

How 'bout the Mass Turnpike?

Most state governments are not allowed to collect revenues from roads, so they create a non-taxing authority to run the road. Hence, the "Mass Turnpike Authority" as well as all other authorities who run bridges and roads.

Y'know, private roads are how many remote areas were once developed. And, while we have forgone socialist ideas like national health care, building public roads is what made this country the economic super power it once was.

Now we need the government to maintain control of the Internet and not sell off our 'Net Neutrality to folks like Verizon - that will maintain our super power status.

But most people don't know or care about that.  :'(

Oh, yeah, and ports? Let's not even start to talk about our shipping ports.

Offline Larry

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Re: Poll: Privitization
« Reply #10 on: August 28, 2006, 06:44:24 PM »
The way I understood the Indiana deal was when the road was built, the toll would be discontinued as soon as construction costs were recovered...well you guys been paying for something like 60 years and now with the 75 year lease seems like that makes a total of 135 years to pay for one road?

Never fret...some in Missouri think Indiana has a pretty slick deal.  They would like to turn the same trick here.  Some years ago taxpayers voted a big tax to improve Missouri roads...but the money somehow disappeared into the general fund.  Fool me once...ok, fool me twice??
Larry, making useful and beautiful things out of the most environmental friendly material on the planet.

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Offline Ron Wenrich

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Re: Poll: Privitization
« Reply #11 on: August 28, 2006, 07:40:32 PM »
The PA turnpike has always been a toll road.  They have their own little commission with some perky jobs.  But, the turnpike is probably one of the better roads in the state.  Its well kept up, and with the high truck tolls, there is less truck traffic and lower damage.  Of course, the trucks go up to I-80, which is still free and pound the living daylights out of that road.

So, let's say they do lease out one of these toll roads.  Maintenance will be one of the problems that has to be done by the private company.  What happens when you have damage due to hitting a pothole?  Right now, you can't sue the state for damages.  Would the private company be liable for damages?  How's snow removal going to be?  Will any money from the fuel taxes be spent on "private" road upkeep?
Never under estimate the power of stupid people in large groups.

Offline CHARLIE

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Re: Poll: Privitization
« Reply #12 on: August 28, 2006, 11:42:57 PM »
Back in the late '50s, Florida built their turnpike which had a toll.  They sold the toll to the people by saying that as soon as the turnpike was paid for, the toll would be discontinued. Well.........almost 50 years later and they are still taking the toll.....'cept it went up quite a bit. .
Charlie
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Offline tcsmpsi

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Re: Poll: Privitization
« Reply #13 on: August 29, 2006, 09:58:19 AM »
I voted, "don't know", for I do not have enough information on particulars of 'road privatization' to reasonably evaluate a 'yes' or 'no' answer.

A few thought on the matter did arise, though. 

Once the People of a nation, tribe, etc. beg for controlled interference into their lives (generally, by a governing entity), it must be paid for.  Of course, the "government" is all too willing to 'provide' this interference, as that gives the "government" inherent power over the People.  Certainly, this interference ('service') has to be paid for.  Again, such "government" is only too willing to levy a tax burden upon all the People (even those who wish no such interference).

Inherently, historically and inevitably, the "government" fails at its 'job' of providing such service, because the People who beg such interference, are ultimately looking for the 'perfect world'.  No such entity exists, the People are doomed to frustration, the tax burden becomes exponentially insufficient, the "government" becomes comfortable in its own inabilities and fat from the labor of the People.

The "government" of the United States of America is a very poor steward of its People and an incompetent business. 

Today, everything is taxed to the breaking point.  The People want more 'government interference' (at every corner, the People want more regulations from dogs barking to humans smoking), and the "government" is living on notes borrowed from other countries.

For ages, the "government" has been run and determined by the corporate will.   As has been mentioned, the "government" has determined itself (with help of the People) beyond reproach and/or accountability.

International entities (corporations, etc.) already design the "government", so one thought would be to pay the corporations for the roads and cut out the 'middle man' ("government").

Bottom line is, the roads have to be paid for.  Who is going to give the best product and service for the buck?

Actually, at this point, I would tend to lean more toward the private entity.



\\\"In the end, it is a moral question as to whether man applies what he has learned or not.\\\" - C. Jung

Offline flip

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Re: Poll: Privitization
« Reply #14 on: August 29, 2006, 12:02:47 PM »
Most of the rub with me is that not that the road lease was sold out but whoit was leased to foreign countries specificially the French.  >:( >:( >:( >:( >:(

Flip
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Offline bitternut

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Re: Poll: Privitization
« Reply #15 on: August 29, 2006, 12:41:46 PM »
You guys outside of NYS haven't seen anything compared to our NYS Thruway Authority which takes care of Interstate 90 and other expressways. The Thruway Authority also manages the Erie Canal for some stupid reason.

Isn't there a large privately owned bridge in Michigan? Also I have crossed a private bridge into Ocean City NJ many times so I know that this is not the first. I believe it may have been built with private funding though and not sold after public funds built it.

Offline tomboysawyer

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Re: Poll: Privitization
« Reply #16 on: August 30, 2006, 12:28:21 AM »
You guys outside of NYS haven't seen anything compared to our NYS Thruway Authority which takes care of Interstate 90 and other expressways. The Thruway Authority also manages the Erie Canal for some stupid reason.

The Erie Canal, when it was built, was the largest public works project ever costing, for more than a decade, 25% of New York's budget - entire state budget. In today's dollars, it was more than Massachusett's Big Dig (and deadlier in its construction and operation).

And that's 'cause there was no highway - just lots and lots and lots of trees.

But the Thruway Authority manages it because way back when the road highway was built, they were still paying for the canal and they collected high tolls on the highway during the summer, but not the winter (when the canal was frozen and you couldn't use it). In fact, I think NY actually banned certain kinds of transport East/West on the highway during the summer.

Saw a really cool presentation on it at Rotary a few weeks back including a giant wheel they used to pull stumps. I hear if you hop the right Amtrack ride you can get someone who will tell you the history of it as you whiz by it.

Offline Bill

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Re: Poll: Privitization
« Reply #17 on: August 31, 2006, 12:47:43 AM »
I just can't get into private ownership of roads. Let's say Microsoft decided to buy the roads in the pacific northwest ( heck in all of north america iffen they wanted to ) . Well the way they work Sun microsystems wouldn't be allowed to use ANY of them. To add insult to injury I'd have to pay MS too - because I own a car - just like Dell or Compaq when they put Linux on a computer instead of MS Windows - still gotta pay MS whether you use it or not. Now I used to think MS was entirely to mercenary - but its come to my attention that many companies are even more ruthless than MS ( think the tobacco industry for a moment - like it actually kills people ).

So can the US govt seize the road if need be - well there's this concept of paying the owner fair market value - oops you say its worth double what you paid for it - no problem the tax payers won't feel a thing.

I too remember some of the promises - like cable won't have commercials . . . how many surprises do you think are in store for us ?

So what happens when we "sell" all our roads. I'm of the opinion that they collect highway taxes from gasoline sales for the upkeep of our roads - you think you'd see that coming back - I think not. And imagine little toll booths popping up every where ownership changed on every road. Better yet - remember that the idea of toll roads came up with the Romans to pay for roads out to their empire ( conquered lands ). Can't we do better than a two thousand year way of funding roads ? ( especially since we already pay for the construction and maintenance through highway taxes )

and since I stepped onto the soap box - my apologies - in europe they build roads for fifty years so they build them well once - call it life cycle cost or whatever. What we do is build them cheap ( as in lowest initial cost ) , then rebuild them , then rebuild them, then rebuild them . . .    Kinda like buying that Chinese clone ( again and again and again . . . ) instead of  spending the money for a Stihl upfront.

Sorry - if govt can't manage its money then it needs to do like ordinary folk - tighten the belt .

OK deep breath and off the soap box  . . .   thanks for listening


Offline jrdwyer

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Re: Poll: Privitization
« Reply #18 on: August 31, 2006, 11:10:16 PM »
I got nowhere expressing my disagreement with our governor and my local Republican rep. over this issue. The bait for passing the 75 year private toll for those in SW Indiana was the money for starting I-69 to Indy. This is definitely a seperate issue to privatizing the Indiana Toll Road, but of course, they lumped it all together into one stinking bill.

Our Evansville newspaper, owned by a large out-of-state corporation, had pro major moves articles every other day. Their biggest advertisers (realtors and car dealers) were all for it so, I guess their position was not that surprising. Even local unions in construction trades went and waved the pro toll lease flag to help guarantee something down the road. Many people today seem to sell-out if they or their friends can make a buck from it. Sad.

Do we need to fix our infrastructure? Yes, or course we do. But the old notion of paying as you go seems lost.

Anyway, I hope the precedent has not been set for all states to turn over public roads to long-term private lease just so the politicians of the moment can spend the check.


Offline PineNut

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Re: Poll: Privitization
« Reply #19 on: August 31, 2006, 11:44:02 PM »
Money is power and politicians love power.


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