Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Public vs Private property

The Ludwig von Mises Institute have a great essay on why public property is always a dismal failure and private property is always better. Heres an extract:

Privately owned companies adjust to the needs of their customers. If there is too much traffic on the road or the road is not paved well enough, adjustments will be made in the name of profit. Any profit maximizing company would make adjustments to meet the consumer not from their humanitarian hearts but from their wealth-maximizing goals. Government roads are public property. There is no incentive to make things better. The only incentive for improvement is through political economy. A politician feels that interest groups will vote for him or her if the roads are improved. In that case, there may be a small improvement. Usually, these improvements will last only a short period of time. Politicians don't build roads that last forever. They build roads that generally last as long as their political careers.