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Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Privatized Government and Judge Judy


Just a bit of food for thought.

Most arguments over government, aside from the loud and senseless ones by those cheering for their political team, end up about how much government is the right amount of government.

Socialists, be they communist or fascist, think the government should control just about everything. Communists run the government and their countries with political party elites, fascists run it with a few political elites and large business leaders. Libertarians and anarcho-capitalists by contrast think little or no government is just about right.

We have seen socialist extremes in our life time, Russia collapsed under a huge central government. The American Revolution came close to a libertarian society, a limited and weak central government with free and separate states competing for free and mobile citizens. There have been no extreme anarcho-capitalist states since the Industrial revolution. Prior to that the Hansa League for one was a type of very loose capitalist alliance, for centuries there was no real central authority structure.

States in transition to watch include China, now capitalist in structure with a strong central government growing weaker. The United States is also in transition, it was once capitalist in structure with distributed power and since the start of the last depression has steadily been socialized and centralized. Russia, stuck in the spin cycle. Russia has never had a strong
small business class, the closest it has come to capitalism is fairly primitive. Russia is floundering about with half measures and over reactions. India is the unnoticed but potentially powerful dark horse, a large number of literate people strangled by regulation and tradition, but they are emerging quickly.

The oldest democracy in the world is Switzerland, with over 500 years of successful decentralized government among diverse citizens. As a capitalist country surrounded by a heavily socialist Europe, Switzerland too is under great pressure. With the emerging information and miniaturization age all countries are under the pressure of societal change.

When folk talk of programs they feel absolutely need government, they usually mention at least roads, courts, and police.

Roads we can envision privatized because we have seen toll roads. Courts are tougher, but we have seen Judge Judy. JJ is really just binding arbitration, both parties guarantee they will abide by her decision, a quick presentation and the case is settled. Most civil matters can be privatized, and then we can look at criminal trials.

Police, here we can consider small private teams of Cops looking for a few year contract. Their reputation for lack of unnecessary force and fair action may get their contract renewed, otherwise they can get booted. The threat of the boot, and the extra pay from competition for the better teams, will encourage fair and balanced enforcement. Police as short term mercenaries under civil authority is very doable. Think of it as term limits for power.

The Libertarian Harry Brown said something to the effect, "Would you give up your favorite government program to stop paying taxes?" Think of the huge outpouring from the private sector for Katrina, private charity is much more efficient than government, and would be larger still if government did not take half of everyone's income.

It can be done. The question is with our changing society
will it be done? The next question is who will attempt it first? There will be the potential of wealth for the people of any countries that succeed.

This next 50 years will be very interesting.

Judge Judy, one way to avoid slow courts.


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Blogger Brad said...

Fascism has nothing to do with socialism. It was only called "national socialism" in order to draw workers to the party. In every major case of a major fascist party (Italy, Germany, Spain), it formed in concert with the conservatives parties and as a reaction AGAINST socialism. Hitler himself thought both communism and socialism were ploys by the Jews to take over the world. Please read Robert O. Paxton's "Anatomy of Fascism" for more.

And now you know.

12:16 AM  
Blogger Charity Shill said...


Thanks for your comment.

I have read some Paxton. He is a very bright and able writer.

Your error is a common one, you let people in the movement tell you what it is, and you believe them. You know Adolf lied, why use him as a source about himself? Look instead at the actions of the movement, let the duck's walk and quack define it as a duck.

From http://dictionary.reference.com/:

so·cial·ism ( P ) Pronunciation Key (ssh-lzm)
1.Any of various theories or systems of social organization in which the means of producing and distributing goods is owned collectively or by a centralized government that often plans and controls the economy.

The difference in these two types of extreme socialism is the construction of the government. Hitler and Stalin were both murdering monsters, one fascist the other communist, but they were socialist allies while it suited their purpose. Communists and fascists are not the same, but they are very close in the style and results of their governance.

If you wish to debate semantics, fine. The chief difference of their claim is that in communism society owns everything, in fascism a few leaders own or control everything. In reality, in all extreme socialist systems a few elites control everything, and plan for everyone.

There is a continuum from an overpowering centralized government making all decisions for everyone, to individuals owning their own lives and interacting on a personal choice level. Socialism is one extreme, anarcho-capitalist is the other. On the left side you can place whichever socialist you wish one notch right from the point the other occupies.

And just to jack your jaws a bit, I would place libertarians in the middle. Enough government to protect individual rights, but too weak to trample those same basic human rights; Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.

And yes, I know.

2:02 AM  
Blogger Daedalus said...

You say, "The United States is also in transition, it was once capitalist in structure with distributed power and since the start of the last depression has steadily been socialized and centralized." And you say, "Communists run the government and their countries with political party elites, fascists run it with a few political elites and large business leaders."

Based on the second sentence, your first sentence is wrong. A few political elites and large business leaders have been in control of this country for a couple of decades now.

2:02 PM  
Blogger BFU Rector said...


Thanks for the comment.

You may be right.


4:19 PM  
Blogger Prateek said...


You left a comment on my blog telling me the full answer Thnx. Do i know you

2:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Would I give up my favorite government program to stop paying taxes? No. How much income would everyone have if they had to pay for every service the government provides, themselves.

The government isn't in buisness to make a profit or to keep our taxes down, they are put in place to govern us.

I don't want/care if the postal service is profitable, I just want them to deliver mail.

6:48 AM  
Blogger BFU Rector said...


Thanks for the comment, you reflect the majority view.

Everyone does pay for every service the government provides, and two or three times more to support the bureaucracy that inefficiently provides it.

Your overnight mail is not a monopoly or government function, but is available without the postal service. The post office is not a required government function today. It is just against the law to compete with them directly.

(If you are in contract negotiations tie your raises to the cost of postage, not the CPI.)

The US Postal Service is actually a bit cheaper on overnight, they keep artificially raising rates for letters to keep their overnight cheap. The competition with UPS, Fed-X, DHL, and more would hold down prices and improve service if the USPS was privatized and their supporting regulations were removed. To avoid an oligopoly almost all the regulations should be removed. That would encourage local small business with ease of entry and ensure better mail service overall.

As we bottom out in the next depression expect the USPS to be privatized.

Government shouldn't be in business.

Government should exist, at the most, to protect the citizen and his right to pursue his own life, liberty, and happiness.

Government of, by, and for the people; not government controlling the lives of the people.


11:35 AM  

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