Public Investment Is The Way Forward For The UK

This post originally appeared at Imagine Democracy.

The UK has ended an experiment in “conservative” governance. Backed by private investors, the government withdrew support for public services, public investment, public everything. They pretended “private” investment would pick up the slack. Instead and of course the wealthy staged a “bust-out” of the country. “A fraud tactic, commonly used in the organized crime world, wherein a business’ assets and lines of credit are exploited and exhausted to the point of insolvency.”

The privatized water companies are a good example of how the country was managed under conservative governance. Public assets were turned over the private “investors.” The “investors” borrowed heavily with those assets and their income stream as collateral. They paid themselves handsomely with minimal investment in maintenance and capacity. Eventually there was insufficient water supply to support increasing housing stock and raw sewage was being dumped into the country’s rivers. Of course there was no government enforcement of rules that would have prevented this – or prevented the resulting pollution. That would be labeled “interference” in the private sector.

Private investment does not provide public returns. The only interests of private investors is private return.

The Only Way Forward For UK Governance Is Public Investment

The way forward for UK governance is public investment in infrastructure, education, healthcare, services, law enforcement, addressing inequality. Investment.

Over time public investment will result in a booming economy and a prosperous public. It always does, everywhere. Look at the countries that follow this formula. The infrastructure is maintained and modern; education and healthcare are first-class, the economies prosper. The people are more equal, happier and prosperous.

Take all the propaganda labels (socialism, capitalism, neoliberalism, etc) out of this equation and look at it for what it is. PUBLIC investment pays off for the PUBLIC. Private investment only pays the already-wealthy private investors.

For The Many, Not The Few

Investment pays dividends down the road. Let the public collect those dividends.