The Morning Sun reports a “trash task force” speaker to have said “I’m not for anything other than straight, free-market capitalism.” Another is quoted as noting that in Pittsburg, “… cultural issues are far more important than economic issues . . . .” Really. Sounds like politicians making meaningless God, mother and apple pie pronouncements to obscure real issues and solutions.
Sun reporting includes statements from more rational speakers, including some identified as existing trash service providers, who seem to recognize there are ways to both minimize the extraordinary damage done to city streets by garbage trucks, and simultaneously keep existing providers employed. Indeed there are, but no such scheme involves “free-market capitalism”, unless by such meaningless hoopla the speakers mean only those city, county and state licensing, regulation and preferences they themselves prefer. No business, taxpayer, wage earner or citizen operates free of governmental regulation, and all of us receive some sort of subsidy from government in the form of tax breaks or write-offs, public infrastructure, and public services.
There’s no free lunch, and there’s no such thing as “free markets”. Follow the money. All that’s really being argued about is who gets what benefit from whom, who can force his will on others, and how.
Pittsburg planners should talk to Joplin officials, who a decade ago established one trash hauler per route, improved service and lowered both costs and street damage. Not all wisdom resides locally. Government should benefit us all, not just a few good ol’ boys.