What are the limits of privatization and sub-contracting in a democracy? Prisons have been privatized, and are only now starting to be held to the same standards as government-run prisons. What about education? Welfare? Environmental protection? National defense? Police?

Could the presidency be privatized? Congress? Everything but?

To what extent are these governmental entities already subtly or not so subtly privatized?

I can even privatize myself - I can sign my life decisions over to someone else - for instance check myself into a mental institution and sign papers that forfeit my rights.

The Elderly and others sometimes have their rights taken away from them involuntarily because they are deemed unable to make decisions to their own benefit.

Privatization is not a panacea even though some of us talk like it is. We’ve confused privatization with making more money that’s why we’re so in favor of it. The truth is that it’s the job of the corporation to take from the many and give to the few, it is the job of the government to take from the few and give to the many. So when you’re anti-government you’re really anti-others and pro-yourself.

There really is no limit in a privatized world. I have seen situations in draught around third world countries where they privatized water.

I will say that privatization is the first mark of forced scarcity on a population and is the root of all social tyranny.

It is the root of fetishisms which then transforms itself into private cult like sectors where duality emerges in that only the “chosen” people can do this or that through collective prejudice all the while such a scenario excludes all others exponetially.

( For what it is worth.)

Before everybody gets too carried away, I would like to make something clear: within the context of a State, the concept of privatization is a continuum. It is not a binary “yes, this is privatized” or “no, this is socialized” concept. It is a question of degree.

To illustrate, if 100% of your business is secured by government activities, your business can not intelligently be called private. Only an arbitrary accounting rule makes you any different from being a government department.

With reference to the Opening Post, the privatization of prisons was mentioned. It is a sham to call them “private” prisons because without the government, there would be no prison.

Therefore, in answer to the Opening Post, everything can be privatized – to a degree. I would say that the Presidency is certainly privatized because the President is a sell-out!

No, not in the context of a State. Sorry.
As long as the government forces you to pay taxes, you do not have complete ownership over yourself.

That was not the question. The question was in a democracy not a privatized world. A completely privatized is anarchy, a world without government.

You know, it is statements like this:

that make me dismiss you as a non-serious anarchist. You have a lot to learn, Joker.

I was using the term “privatization” loosely there.

But it’s an interesting question I think. I agree with you that in reality (rather than ideally) it is in large part a matter of degree. But on the other hand can we define the general attitude of privatization as essentially about willingly abjuring responsibility (and therefore freedom)? Or is privatization essentially the creation of efficiency - not fundamentally affecting freedom at all?

Sometimes a city or state department of roads and highways (or whatever it may be called - “public works”, often) fixes the roads, and sometimes the state or municipality hires a contractor to do this. Sometimes the school custodian unplugs a toilet (or used to, anyway) and sometimes the school calls a plumber. “Privatisation” is a current watchword, but there is nothing new about it.

Of course, but this is a question about its practical and theoretical limits in a democracy.

I see what you mean by using the term loosely. I am glad you recognize that we are dealing with a question of freedom.

[I wish I had included this in my previous post:] Not only is privatization a continuum, it is multi-dimensional. We can not talk about going from point A to point B but rather we are talking about going to point C and D and E etc. etc.
Complete socialization is different in every single context and it means different things to different people.

Here is the rub: democracy itself is a violation of individual freedom. Some people gain from it and some people lose. For most, it is a bit of both but ultimately, you can not evaluate it on somebody else’s behalf.

[I will assume you are talking about a State school.] The most important thing to note is that the problem of the plugged toilet is a product of a loss of somebody else’s freedom – the tax-payer’s freedom, for one – which represents a change along somebody’s Privatized - Socialized continuum. Also, that somebody has no opportunity to influence the choice of plumber.

  1. The school could simply choose a cheap plumber and get it repaired every month because of cash flow issues – they can not put out a huge one time replacement.
  2. Alternatively, the school authorities could choose the principal’s brother, a repairman, simply to give him a job.
    These two possibilities properly exemplify the real world.

Most State functions are much more complicated than this binary plugged toilet scenario because common citizens are often denied choices which they otherwise would face without statism. At the same time, common citizens are often forced to make choices that they would otherwise NOT face without statism too.

Just hypothetically, if every single person was forced by The Social Contract Authorities to go to school until the age of 16 years, the demand for unplugging toilets would probably be greater than it would otherwise – that is just a guess.

In that example, I would say that the instance where both the custodian DOES NOT unplug the toilet and the school DOES NOT call a plumber would also be an example of privatization – maybe the only objective one. Something has to be abandoned by the State and left to individuals to freely handle themselves, for it to be objectively considered to be privatized – or at least going in the direction of privatization.

I do not think so because “we” can never know why a person abjured their responsibility or freedom. All we can do is observe the actions which occurred.
Furthermore, we can not know what a person values. Thus, if I deprive you of your right to walk around freely by putting an electric fence around your house, that would be a change in the balance along a freedom continuum.
However, what if you were paraplegic??? Well, in that case, your right to walk really has not changed. The effect of the electric fence is different for you. [Maybe it provides you with extra protection against thieves or maybe it just makes it difficult for the milkman to deliver your milk. Then again, you may be self-sufficient with enough supplies to last the rest of your life.] It could be negative or positive. The details do not matter much. What matters is that it is a different continuum and only YOU have the wherewithal – I would also say the right – to evaluate it.

A person who sells himself so to speak, could very well have just paid a person to take care of him or could have genuinely sold himself into slavery. However, since it was willful, the only thing that makes sense is to assume that he is better off that way.

I am hesitant to answer that question mainly because “efficiency” can mean vastly different things to different people.
However, I believe you may be mixing up concepts. Privatization is identified by control which reflects the freedom of the rightful owner.

Sammy - You’re kidding me, right?

What is it that you think is a joke???

Are you suggesting that “privatization” can intelligently be described as something other than a change in freedom?
Are you having trouble accepting that freedom can not be compared between individuals?
Something else?

Please be clarify.

Dude, a plugged toilet is a plugged toilet. It’s just something that happens. Too much toilet paper, maybe. Or maybe the drain was designed poorly. Either way, you have yourself a plugged toilet. It’s got to be unplugged. If you can call that a loss of freedom, you can call any act a loss of freedom, which renders the phrase meaningless.

Private contracts are regularly put out to bid, in a public process. And there are disclosure laws. While the process can be abused, so can the hiring of a janitor - he may be the principal’s brother-in-law. Cheating can occur in both scenarios - it’s irrelevant to the question at hand.

Why do you call them “private” contracts?

By “private” I mean just what I have been referring to, and what this thread is about - contracts with private companies. Yes, they are “public” in two senses - that their existence is in the public record, and that one of the parties is the public. Please do not attempt to waste my time with some semantic “argument”.

I’ll rephrase - “Contracts betwen the government and private companies…”

That is clearer, I admit, but it doesn’t change anything else I have said.

I didn’t know there was a limit of privatization in a so called democracy…

Could of fooled me. Through my observation everything seems quite limitless.

Well Joker, there must be a limit. If an elected President literally outsources the presidency to be managed by a corporation, the government could hardly be called a democracy anymore. If you manage to claim that this is already completely 100% the case, that just means it’s not actually a democracy.

If you have enough propaganda, deception, and control I am under the impression that there exists no limit.

That is how I perceive modern democracies and indeed all governments beyond democratic ones.

History has taught us that if one has enough arms, power, deception, propaganda, control,violence,dominion and forcible coercion at their disposal there is no limit to anything in a societal domain.

We may blindly delude ourselves that there are limits but those holding on the reigns of power know that there isn’t especially in our time where propaganda and deception has become perfected over the ages.

If you control the belief structure and livelihood of the masses or populance there exists no limit to anything.

Do I agree with these exercises of power? No. But it doesn’t matter what I think or say because these exercises of power have been the same since the beginning of time and I doubt they will ever change.

Are you kidding now???
I am trying to point out that there is no black and white delineation between the two. That is not semantics. I asked YOU to demonstrate YOUR opinion on what constitutes “private” as opposed to “public” and you refuse. Fine. So be it.