Jump to content
Objectivism Online Forum
Sign in to follow this  
Areactor

The Dreaded Private Sector

Rate this topic

Recommended Posts

Hello everyone

I have a question regarding the private VS public issue. Would it be wise to hand the economy entirely to the private sector since the economy will revolve around "Private interest."?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I have a question regarding the private VS public issue. Would it be wise to hand the economy entirely to the private sector since the economy will revolve around "Private interest."?

I assume it would be a disaster if everything were 'just' handed over. Trying to privatise most of the things that are currently state-owned would probably be an incredibly difficult task, and would take many years to perform in a way that wouldnt result in the collapse of a country's economy. The details regarding how the plan would work lies completely outwith the field of phlosophy - I suspect it would take many knowledgable economists and social scientists to come up with something feasible.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hello everyone

I have a question regarding the private VS public issue. Would it be wise to hand the economy entirely to the private sector since the economy will revolve around "Private interest."?

Well, the simple answer is "yes". It IS in the best interest of everyone that all businesses and property be privately owned. The reasons are simple in both philosophical and economic principles--but they do take quite a long explication (and I certainly don't claim to have a complete knowledge of all the principles involved and their exact operations; there are several members here who are majoring or have majored in economics).

You do know why Objectivism's politics is laissez-faire capitalism?

I assume it would be a disaster if everything were 'just' handed over. Trying to privatise most of the things that are currently state-owned would probably be an incredibly difficult task, and would take many years to perform in a way that wouldnt result in the collapse of a country's economy. The details regarding how the plan would work lies completely outwith the field of phlosophy - I suspect it would take many knowledgable economists and social scientists to come up with something feasible.

I don't think his question was if or how they could be successfully privatised.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Well, the simple answer is "yes". It IS in the best interest of everyone that all businesses and property be privately owned.

But why would it be in everyones interest that all businesses are privately owned? Would the phrase "profit over people" become a reality?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
But why would it be in everyones interest that all businesses are privately owned? Would the phrase "profit over people" become a reality?

You present a false alternative with that phrase. "Profit" does not harm "the public good"--in fact its the only thing that promotes it (if there is any meaning to the term "public good"). That phrase would have you believe that the best way for private businesses to make the greatest profit is by harming the interest of the "people", which is absolutely false.

I'll have to say that your question is too general; asking "why would it be in everyones interest that all businesses are privately owned?" is practically the same thing as asking "how is capitalism in everyone's self-interest?" I can give you the simplest answer I can, but it will probably leave you with a lot of unanswered questions. But a complete and detailed answer would require several volumes of economic treatises.

Some recommended books to get started with:

Economics in One Lesson (best intro!)

Capitalism: the unknown ideal

Capitalism: a treastise on economics

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
"profit over people"

It’s useful to analyze what that term implies, and the alternative it does not mention.

“Profit” is the value gained by entrepreneurs who take risks and invest resources in new opportunities for voluntary exchange between individuals. “Profits,” by definition, are made possible by the voluntary (and thus non-coercive) choices by the “people” to increase their well-being. If you realize this, you should ask yourself – what is the alternative to “profits?” What kind of relationship between "people" does it imply?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It implies a zero-sum, malevolent, man-eat-man universe. It implies that in any interaction between men, one *necessarily* must be sacrificed to the other. ;)

Areactor: you should ask yourself what is a profit, and what leads to a profit?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Whose private interest? 

Think of the areas of the economy that really do not work well: highways, schools, healthcare.

Whenever I see the rush on the highways, I curse the government for owning them. Whenever I have to take my child to the ER, I curse government healthcare rules. Whenever I fill in my school-district number on my tax-form and remember that I have to pay even though my child attends a private Montessori school, I curse the government.

Complaints aside, in a rich country like America the healthcare system, many government schools, and the post-office still run at reasobaly good levels of efficiency and competence. Mostly, they still do not measure up to private alternatives and cost many times more than they ought to.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello everyone

I have a question regarding the slavery VS freedom issue. Would it be wise to hand people's lives entirely to themselves since those lives will revolve around their "Private interest."?

In other words, would it not be better to keep at least *some* slavery, in order that we may be certain men will not be devoted just to their 'private interests' but also to whatever we identify as 'public interests' as well?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
But why would it be in everyones interest that all businesses are privately owned? Would the phrase "profit over people" become a reality?

Why would that be bad when you look at the reality of "non-profit over people".

Fred Weiss

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...