Monday, 23 July 2012

Public / Private

Was reading an article in the Sunday Times yesterday - some woman was complaining about male office culture and how her male work colleagues thought it was the height of hilarity to fart loudly in front of her. What's wrong with these people? I just can't believe this kind of behaviour! She's obviously had a humour bypass if she doesn't find that funny.

On Saturday I was listening to Any Questions on the Radio. One of the panellists was a chap called Owen Jones. He writes columns for various newspapers and is a rabid left-winger. This prat annoyed me intensely; he doesn’t like allowing anyone else to speak, has opinions based on dogma, rather than logic or analysis, and is an annoying little shit with very little experience of life. 

He was repeating the left-wing mantra that the public sector is far superior to the private sector – a one-size-fits-all philosophy – using the G4S debacle as an example. For a start, it is very easy to generalise on the basis of one single example – but fallacious and not very clever. Secondly, G4S will pay for the mistakes they have made – the public sector rarely suffers consequences, as there invariably is no competition to step in. 

Public sector is good in certain areas, but private sector is good in others – one size does not fit all, and to suggest it does is pure dogma with no evidence to back it up. 

What is bad, whether in the public or private sector, is a monopoly. Monopolies concentrate too much power, stifle innovation, breed inefficiency and can easily hold the public to ransom. The public sector tends, by its very nature, to suffer more from monopolistic tendencies and the dictatorship of the public sector unions, who have been responsible for the wholesale destruction of numerous industries; shipbuilding, car manufacturing, the coal industry, steel making, etc.

Public sector failures affect the entire population and have few consequences for the public sector itself; private sector failures affect only a small portion of the population, but affect the service companies massively, as they can easily go out of business as competitors step in.

No - it's not a case of either being intrinsically better than the other; it's horses for courses, but neither must be allowed to become a monopoly.


Alan Burnett said...

It is all well and good to say what is bad is monopoly - but some degree of monopoly is inevitable in certain areas unless you are going to waste a fortune by building half a douzen parallel railway lines or laying six gas pipes to each house. As far as the wonderful advantages of having competing gas suppliers using common pipes - remind me what they are.

Chairman Bill said...

None of them can go on strike and stop you getting gas.