The Trump administration wants to run the government like a business: all the profits go to those at the top, and the rest of us are left to fight over the scraps.
Less than five months into his presidency, Trump has taken serious steps to hand over major public assets to profit-hungry corporations. From the pro-business cabinet picks to the “Corporate Interests First” budget proposal, the administration makes it clear it wants to deconstruct government agencies, gut regulations that keep us safe from polluters and corporate greed, and sell off public goods for private profit.
The administration is so eager to sell off public assets that Gary Cohn, director of the National Economic Council who heads Trump’s infrastructure initiative, told executives at a White House meeting, ‘Take a project you have right now, sell it off, privatize it, we know it will get maintained, and we’ll reward you for privatizing it. The bigger the thing you privatize, the more money we’ll give you.”
Privatizing public assets and federal jobs may sound good for politicians, but it is a bad deal for the American people. Privatizing public assets means allowing greedy corporations to overcharge for things that rightfully belong to all Americans. Privatizing government functions means taking existing money from programs millions of people rely on and cutting them to the bone so their new owners can make an extra buck.
Studies have shown that public-private partnerships (PPPs) just don’t work. They're expensive and inefficient. A report by the Brookings Institution found that "in practice [PPPs] have been dogged by contract design problems, waste, and unrealistic expectations.”
But these facts are not relevant considering the demands of the well-funded, politically-connected special interests.
Here are seven things the Trump administration wants to privatize right away:
“When we privatize, we’re padding the pockets of CEOs and giving up key aspects of our democratic control,” said AFGE President J. David Cox Sr. “Their bottom line is profit, not the American people. In contrast, our government exists for the common good, to make our lives better. We need to fully fund our government programs, not diverting public money to enrich millionaires and billionaires.”
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