(from an article about Domino’s electing to repair American roads in a cyberpunk forum I pasted it to’s responses:)
People don’t “universally oppose” paying taxes, but most citizens — outside of Portland, Oregon — have zero-to-less sense of what their taxes would be *for* and take no satisfaction in them. (Chris Walla of Death Cab for Cutie, in an article about his moving here from Seattle, brings up that it’s satisfying to know “your taxes are doing good things,” or however-he-put-it — what a concept!)
IOW: The idea that this is so alien, so novel, and so all-but-forgotten a concept is what enables *anybody* to say people “universally oppose” taxes. Nobody would, if everybody knew what they were for — though, for *that* matter, they do go to a lot of things we’d take for granted and be indignant if we lost.
Domino’s resources aren’t infinite, and they’re not some benevolent master, and they’re not beholden to the public. It’s a preposterous joke that, not unlike the Romans, we can’t maintain our own roads (look how we’re doing with schools, with this Betsy DeVos woman at the helm). What’s next — the debasement of coins? The hiring of mercenaries for our army (scratch that — Blackwater or whatever-Erik-Prince’s-organization-is-called-now certainly qualifies; part of the problem is when people get touchy and scurrilous about calling a spade a spade). That leaves the Circus Maximus and more brutal, senses-dulling entertainments (Uh … ) and the push-and-pull of ruling families trying to get their factions in. Right.
Have a nice day, folks!
Privatizing isn’t “stealing”; it’s still within their profit margins, and they still have a motive-and-reward for doing so — up to a certain point. Government’s supposed to be for stuff nobody wants to do, but has to get done anyway.
It’s more like the circumstances that give rise to it. When government’s hobbled or limping along in its function, and it’s been made that way by certain administrations, one is, shall we say, hardly surprised. It’s not unlike certain school districts who have to go to absurd lengths to provide for their students — teachers paying for their own chalk, for example. To European countries, we look stupid, and not only do our children grow up uneducated, they grow up hostile, and easily-swayable. Similarly with shitty roads that everyone feels is “our lot” to fix, if this becomes commonplace: why? And what if Domino’s has a crisis with pizza boxes, or the price of mozzarella cheese goes up one quarter, threatening profits? #notkidding
There isn’t a continuous “we” or “us” there. Domino’s could get bored, dissatisfied, uninterested in maintaining roads. and what then? Roads are a problem but not immediately life-ending. This is why it’s productive to talk about as a precedent. It doesn’t bode well, particularly since the roads constructed earlier in the 20th century didn’t *exist* before, and every *year*, decisions have to be made about what bridges (yes, bridges!) or roads (you know: they’re *on the ground*) need maintenance and whether it can be afforded they get it (yes: *bridges*!).
It’s a great world. Structurally-sound as a wedding cake built yesterday, I tell you whut! (sarc.)