There seems to be a broad swathe of public opinion that says that both major political parties are essentially the same in terms of their economic policy. Whilst this may have been true when the Labour Party discovered that the selfish ideas of Thatcherism carried such broad appeal with the electorate that the only way to get elected was essentially to promise and deliver more of the same under Blair & Brown there appears to now be a fundamental difference that is not being discussed at the present time and it’s one that is vitally important for the future of United Kingdom.
In short the Conservative party is nothing other than an asset stripping organisation. They have been remarkably consistent in taking goods and services that belong to the general public and selling these to their friends. They may find that they can present this as being sound economic policy but in fact it’s nothing of the sort because it’s pretty obvious to anyone you can only sell the family silver once.
Let’s have a look at how successful this has been for the inhabitants of the United Kingdom — since privatisation the railways have seen a reduction in the quality of service and an average 200% price increase according to some surveys (between 141 and 246%) obviously some would say that the state of the railways prior to privatisation was terrible and needed a lot of money putting in but essentially we know that that’s not true because many of the lines that we hear is still utilise the exact same rolling stock that was used under British Rail. Now let’s transfer this thinking across to the NHS — because as far as I can see this is the single most important issue the United Kingdom electorate faces right now, that is to say do we want to completely privatise the NHS as it is currently being done in a very secretive and dishonest way by the Conservative and Liberal Democrat government — which would essentially bring about worse service at a far greater cost and massive profits for the private corporations that then start to run the health service just as they do running the rail system?
Let’s be very clear and call a spade a spade, asset stripping is a nasty business essentially what it does is approach is a economic entity that has integral value as a whole unit is selectively choose the elements of these units that are most valuable and sells these at the best possible price to private investors who are then entrusted to run these organisations. The management and investors run these organisations not in the interests of the general public or the users but instead they are responsible for delivering shareholder value. That might seem like a terrifically great idea if you happen to own shares in one of these privately run state enterprises, and I dare say those people that have purchased shares in privatised industries have done very well thank you very much, yet at the same time the externalities created for society as a whole have been tremendously large and undealt with.
I believe that it is time that we gave up on this childish notion that we all want to be some kind of shareholders, it’s time that we give out on the lie of aspiration which essentially is rent seeking and profiteering on the costs of others — if we don’t we run the risk of sleepwalking into a completely corporatised future where our children are instantly viewed as consumers and there is no longer anything that belongs to the state or the people. The question we must ask ourselves is do we believe that nationalised industries run in the public interest can be run better than privatise industries run for the interests of shareholders?
I don’t believe that the choice facing the UK electorate is one where we can say that we are able to make a positive choice, much as it has been for the past few elections it’s a question of choosing the lesser evil and I believe that the asset strippers of the greatest danger to society that we have seen for a long time.