|No Fear of Freedom||
|Anti-right rants from an obnoxious lumpen proletarian. Aiming to Arm the Choir.|
July 18, 2004
Conservative Forces Deliver The GoodsCivil Service Has Morphed Into U.S. Inc.
Diminishing the government workforce increases the role of private contractors, and the mixed results go undebated.
Heh. Mixed results is too generous an assessment. Largely unknown results is more like it.
BOSTON — For two decades, Congress has been engaged in a bipartisan effort to shrink the size of government. But today, although fewer people appear on federal payrolls, more people than ever work for the U.S. government.So, the great "conservative" push to "reduce" government has been a wild success. I'm serious. It's had exactly the results they were hoping for: a huge transfer of taxpayer money from government to the "private sector." And let's all just admit, right here, right now, the Democrats are conservatives. The Republicans are the far right.
Nobody represents liberal (Progressive, socialist, whatever. You can call it what you want to, I call it messin' with the kid.) goals on economic issues. That's why the Dems have lost the working class. And the reason is money. Dems want to tap into that same motherlode the Repukes have: The wealthy elites. They figure they can get away with social "liberalism" as long as they don't challenge the wealthy on the issues they truly hold near and dear. That was the DLC plan, and look how well it's worked. The Dems will be lucky to ever get back in power.
Nobody knows exactly how many contractors the government employs. Paul Light of the Brookings Institution estimates that the federal budget funds a "shadow government" of nearly 6 million contractors, about half of them in defense. That means contractors outnumber civil servants and military personnel by a ratio of 2 to 1.I'd be willing to bet that we don't get value for money. Between the profit margins demanded and the rampant fraud in government contracting, I can't see how the contractors can be more efficient from the point of view of the taxpayer.
Finally, how should this large and growing army of workers be managed? The rules governing how and what the government buys are designed to ensure fair competition. But more than half of government contracts are awarded without full competition, according to Taxpayers for Common Sense, a nonpartisan budget analyst. Giant contractors have become adept at gaming the system. Once firms win big contracts — often using low-ball initial cost estimates — the government becomes so dependent on their services that it's almost impossible to get rid of them.This privatization idiocy coupled with the deregulation idiocy is laying waste to America. People seem to think there was never any reason for regulations or government agencies. They seem to think they were forced on unwilling voters by evil liberals like Teddy Roosevelt and FDR. They've apparently never read American history other than that they found in their approved text books. Where has deregulation helped the small consumer? Not in Pennsylvania, sure as hell not in California or the Northwest. Dennis Kucinich was practically run out of Cleveland for refusing to privatize the city electric utility. He later returned as a hero after people saw that he had absolutely done the right thing, and saved them money.
People really need to hold their collective breath until Bush Bum's voluntary pollution controls kick in and people stop getting seriously sick and even dying from air pollution. Only they can't, cause they ain't never gonna kick in. Voluntary regulations are idiotic, no surprise in Bush's case. If it was something they were gonna do voluntarily anyway, no one would've suggested regulation.
And privatization is almost certainly costing us more money for less service. It sure ain't savin' us any money. So what was the point? Oh, yeah, to put more money in the pockets of the rich. It's only right. After all, they own the government.