Letters to the Editor

Your views in 200 words or less

TACOMA: Public services equal public benefit

Letter by Hill Eshbach, Gig Harbor on Nov. 30, 2010 at 11:05 am | 5 Comments »
November 30, 2010 11:23 am

Re: “Tacoma’s ‘public-ization'” (TNT, 11-28).

This article proposes to sort out if Tacoma is trying to do too much in offering public services by comparing Tacoma’s offerings with the public services of other “similar-sized cities.”

To take just one of the article’s concerns, and one that most everyone uses, namely, “electric power,” the article fails to compare the cost to the ratepayers of public vs. private electricity.

Public electricity, and other such public services, don’t have the profit motive involved in their delivery. Hence, no profit for the capitalists and Wall Street. The other public services mentioned in the article also don’t get any less expensive when run by profit-making corporations.

Secondly, why shouldn’t those “comparison cities” increase their public services up to the standard that Tacoma has established, instead of having their citizens pay higher rates to the investor-owned utilities and corporations?

“Public-ization” is a made-up bogey man word for “public services” to try to undermine the legitimacy of such services, in the service of the private, corporate and Wall Street sector. Many of us see what kind of stuff Wall Street is made of, and the common good has no part in their vision.

This ostensibly objective comparison is really not objective at all, nor is it a concern for the common good of Tacomans, because it leaves out the increased cost factor. Rather, it is an attempt to suggest that we should take public services away from Tacomans, privatize those services, and make Tacomans pay higher rates to the private/for-profit/corporate sector.

The News Tribune now uses Facebook commenting on selected blogs. See editor's column for more details. Commenters are expected to abide by terms of service for Facebook as well as commenting rules for thenewstribune.com. Report violators to webmaster@thenewstribune.com.