February 16, 2016 by Chris Kite
Few government organizations in this country have such an incredibly positive success record as the Federal Aviation Administration. Flying in the US on American carriers is incredibly safe. It sets standards around the world.
Of course some of its systems are not up to modern standards. Why? Well, mostly because the FAA has not been properly funded. That isn’t a surprise. Because outside of military spending, the Republican party has been on a race to destroy every other public institution in this country. Their idea, even though they don’t say it, is to so screw up every government agency, by under-funding it, making sure it has restrictions that prevent it from properly functioning, and doing whatever it can to make government look bad. Then they can stand up in front of each other and say, “See. I told government can’t do anything right.”
They did it with FEMA after Hurricane Katrina. They did it in Michigan when they tried to save money by switching Flint Michigan’s water supply.
The Republicans, in their infinite wisdom, want to privatize an organization that is tasked not just with coordinating flight movements within the country, but keep air passengers and those on the ground safe, and sets the standards for the rest of world.
There isn’t enough funding. So the answer is to take the FAA and privatize it? Because it doesn’t have enough money. Well I’m not sure about everyone else, but the way I see it, the only way this organization could have enough money to fix its infrastructure, would be to raise fees and charge more for its services. But I guess as long as you can’t call it a tax, making the public pay more for something is okay.
The only reason it makes sense to privatize the FAA is because the idiotic Republicans believe that any kind of tax is a bad tax. They are under the misguided belief that somehow all private organizations are more efficient than government. That simply isn’t true. Sure. Some private companies are more efficient than government. And some government organizations are more efficient that private companies. The banking industry is not a government organization. Yet, when allowed to “throw off the shackles of necessary regulation,” they managed to create the greatest financial crisis since the great depression.
The airlines are private industry and they are a huge mess. They can’t get people to their destinations on time. They can’t do it comfortably. They lost money in 23 of the first 31 years after deregulation. They are universally hated for poor service. And they have only become profitable by nickel and diming customers thru extra charges for everything from assigning seats to boarding a plane early to checking a bag.
Private industry is not some magical solution to all problems. Some things are best in the government’s hands. Some things are best in private industry’s hands.
When it comes to safety standards and protecting the American public, I’m not at all convinced that turning these tasks over to private industry is the best solution!