Obama Was Right to End Private Prisons

In my newest article, published in the Albuquerque Journal, I argue in favor of Obama’s decision to end the use of private prisons. Here are some excerpts:

While the Obama administration’s decision may seem antithetical to conservative beliefs, those who favor small government – who favor true privatization – should support the impending policy change.

So, what does “true privatization” even mean?

Conservatives believe when the government monopolizes a service (like roads), quality and efficiency fall while costs increase.

Compare this to the private marketplace, where inefficient enterprises go out of business (unless they’re bailed out by the government, of course). These market forces cause businesses to innovate, slash costs wherever possible (without reducing quality), and fire unproductive workers and administrators.

The government, however, rarely fires itself – it has no incentive to do so.

Indeed, government is generally less efficient than private industry. Private businesses have more of an incentive to produce high quality goods at low prices; governments don’t have such incentives.

So, if privatization is so great, why should conservatives support Obama’s decision to END the use of private prisons?

Easy: Private prisons aren’t very private. They don’t use market forces to provide goods and services. Instead, they rely on cronyism and unbalanced playing fields.

The current private prison complex is as crony as crony capitalism can get. The system has simply moved the monopolies around: Instead of a public monopoly, we now have private monopolies. Both are equally bad!

Private prisons receive legal and economic advantages conferred by the state a normal business would not – or, at least, should not – get in a free and open market.

Check out the full article here for more.

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