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Should the Kansas Legislature pursue opportunities to privatize or outsource some government services?

Response Percent Votes
No
 
49% 520
Yes
 
42% 447
Not sure
 
7% 80
Total 1047

Comments

mr_right_wing 4 years, 4 months ago

Lies edjayhawk? It's been less than one year and look at how many things have been 'nationalized' (and of course right now we're working on nationalizing health control). You may also want to go back and listen to Barry-boy's inauguration speech, he promised nothing but big government either controlling or regulating everything. If Kansas pushes this privatization idea, we're headed for a confrontation with a socialist leader that we cannot win.

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rgh 4 years, 4 months ago

I have not read all the previous posts, but I can state for a fact that there are McDonald's in the good ole US of A that outsource their drivethru services to India!! That's right folks, there is a person who makes a couple of bucks an hour taking your orders then you pick up and pay for your order at the first window in the U.S after placing your order in India.

How's that when we have kids who need jobs and want jobs for minimum wage having those jobs outsourced to India to save paying minimum wage to US teenagers. That's just one little example of having a corrupt corporate world in some instances.

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edjayhawk 4 years, 4 months ago

mr_right_wing (Anonymous) says… …..that wouldn't go over well with our socialist President though (who wants to nationalize just about everything.) I'm guessing he is admiring Canada where the government runs all liquor stores.

More radical far right republican lies....

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KsTwister 4 years, 4 months ago

Outsource to China,Mexico and India like the rest of the jobs that left. Leave some so that you can't follow the money and figure out what taxpayer savings really are. Stupid question.

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beawolf 4 years, 4 months ago

How could anyone say no to this question. You always have pursue your options and then decide if outsourcing is logistically and financially feasible. I'm sure there are some administrative functions (data storage, accounting, etc. etc) that might benefit from outsourcing, others will not.

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sourpuss 4 years, 4 months ago

This depends on the service. Some things are run far more effectively by private firms. Contracting out such things to third parties saves the tax dollars for those things that should not be privatized. However, these little ex-government companies cannot be run to make gobs of profits. If greed enters in, they are disastrous. Of course, one could say that about most of the machinery of capitalism - hence the banking crisis.

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notajayhawk 4 years, 4 months ago

overthemoon (Anonymous) says…

"No. Now listen clearly and cut the cute adolescent response efforts. What I'm saying is that there is no rational substantiation for claims that Obama's reaction to the mess Bush made is an attempt at a 'government takeover'."

Speaking of 'adolescent response efforts', moonie, your argument appears to be that since YOU can't understand why Obama would do that, it must not be true.

"I guess you would have preferred GM and all of the related businesses to have failed…and all of their employees left jobless?"

Why - yes, actually.

"I hope you have made plans to reject all medicare benefits, as well?"

If you're relying on Medicare for your old age, moonie, you're farther gone than any rational argument can help.

In any rate, it's amusing to watch you simultaneously reject any possible reason for government takeover while justifying the reasons for the takeovers that have already happened.


gccs14r (Anonymous) says…

"And if you don't live in their immediate distribution area, you're not getting them on the day they went to press."

The immediate delivery area apparently includes my office. It won't be delivered to my doorstep, though - because the post office doesn't deliver here, either, I have to go to the post office and use a box.

Also, I notice you didn't seem concerned about the $7 billion worth of red ink the post office is amassing this year. Let's just keep the government in charge of providing those services, as long as they're being paid for by that bottomless pit full of (other people's) tax dollars, right?

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gccs14r 4 years, 4 months ago

"The Journal doesn't have a Sunday edition, gcc. The New York Times does. And the USPS doesn't deliver on Sundays."

And if you don't live in their immediate distribution area, you're not getting them on the day they went to press. They have to be delivered, and the customary carrier for that is the USPS. As for not having Sunday delivery, that's standard among all the major carriers.

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overthemoon 4 years, 4 months ago

nice spin try, notahawk.

No. Now listen clearly and cut the cute adolescent response efforts. What I'm saying is that there is no rational substantiation for claims that Obama's reaction to the mess Bush made is an attempt at a 'government takeover'.

I guess you would have preferred GM and all of the related businesses to have failed...and all of their employees left jobless? I hope you have made plans to reject all medicare benefits, as well?

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notajayhawk 4 years, 4 months ago

overthemoon (Anonymous) says…

"You know, with all the bleeping about Obama “wanting the government to take over everything”, I have never heard a rational answer as to W H Y he would want to do this. There is N O rationale for this other than vague references to his 'agenda'."

Why, you're absolutely right!

There is NO rational reason why the government should own 2 of the big 3 American auto manufacturers. Or want to sell insurance.

So if he has no 'agenda', moon, are you saying the president is irrational?


gccs14r (Anonymous) says…

"Presumably you meant a local paper, not the Wall Street Journal or Pravda. The latter two would be delivered via USPS."

My, what eclectic reading tastes you have.

The Journal doesn't have a Sunday edition, gcc. The New York Times does. And the USPS doesn't deliver on Sundays.

I find it amusing all the folks trying to defend the Post Office as a shining example of how government agencies work. Especially given that they're running a $7 billion deficit this year.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/30/business/30postal.html?_r=1&ref=todayspaper

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Uhlrick_Hetfield_III 4 years, 4 months ago

No, the privatization of foster care has been a disaster for children. If the Senate leadership had any integrity, there would be an investigation so the practice of placing and re-placing children for no reason other than to generate another fee comes to an end.

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bobberboy 4 years, 4 months ago

I think everyone should just lose their jobs and start over again.

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bondmen 4 years, 4 months ago

Oh please tell US once again what services and functions government performs brilliantly and efficiently, that also do not pervert human incentives thereby creating the much forgotten and always minimized but always prevalent issue of unintended consequences.

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gccs14r 4 years, 4 months ago

"Did your newspaper get delivered today, ronnie, child?"

Presumably you meant a local paper, not the Wall Street Journal or Pravda. The latter two would be delivered via USPS.

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overthemoon 4 years, 4 months ago

From an interview with Frank Luntz, one of the crafters of the Opposition talking points. No substance, just a word that control the debate

DS: Your new 28-page memo, “The Language of Health Care,” was sent to Republicans in Congress and recommends that they speak about health care reform in ominous phrases. For instance, you suggest that they refer to “a Washington takeover.” FL: “Takeover” is a word that grabs attention.

DS: Is it a correct description of the president’s plans for reform? FL: We don’t know what he is proposing. We want to avoid “a Washington takeover.”

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overthemoon 4 years, 4 months ago

You know, with all the bleeping about Obama "wanting the government to take over everything", I have never heard a rational answer as to W H Y he would want to do this. There is N O rationale for this other than vague references to his 'agenda'.

The whole notion of 'government takeover' was actually a manufactured talking point dreamed up by the republican strategists to steer the debate on Health care away from the issues. Those who believe this nonsense are the willing tools of those who would prefer to profit from the status quo. Their 'aganda' is about the money. It's always about the money. Who would profit from a gov't takeover??? No one. And there is no such thing happening except in the rhetoric machine.

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gccs14r 4 years, 4 months ago

I think the longest line I've been in at the DMV was about five deep. I generally go during lunch.

Want to know why social service spending is being cut? Fallout from W's tax cuts.

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notajayhawk 4 years, 4 months ago

dinglesmith (Anonymous) says…

"Medicaid cannot turn anyone who qualifies away. Nor can they raise premiums. Try getting private insurance with a chronic illness like juvenile onset diabetes towards the end of your life."

Again, the story I linked to above is about how people that qualify for Medicaid aren't getting signed up because of the inability of the administrative offices that handle that to keep up. An acquaintance of mine recently had to pay for a rather expensive prescription for one of his children out-of-pocket because it took KHPA over six weeks to process his renewal, and that was before the state cut the administrative budget.

And I wasn't talking about motor vehicle inspections, which are done at private repair shops in most states. I was talking about the place you go to register the vehicle, or, in most states, renew your driver's license. About the only time you'll ever see a line at a private office that approaches the length you'll see at state offices is on the last Saturday morning of the month - when the state offices aren't open.


Godot (Anonymous) says…

"My view is, if it can be “privatized,” (which is just another term for a government agency hiring a contractor), it is a dead-on signal that it should not even be a function of government."

Ding ding ding ding ding, we have a winner!

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notajayhawk 4 years, 4 months ago

ronwell_dobbs (Anonymous) says…

"I'd like for you to explain to me how a for-profit company could provide point-to-point service for delivery of a few pieces of paper in between any one of perhaps 200,000,000 different addresses for $0.44 per letter. Please explain."

Did your newspaper get delivered today, ronnie, child?

"Also, please explain how a for-profit company could provide a network of interconnected roads with engineering specifications all the way from Interstate highways down to county-maintained dirt roads and remain in business."

Gee, ronnie, why don't you ask one of the almost 3,000 companies listed here, who do that all over the world?

http://goliath.ecnext.com/coms2/browse_CI_1611-26

Or how about the private contractors who are building roads paid for with Obama's stimulus money?

http://denver.bizjournals.com/denver/stories/2009/11/23/story3.html

Are you really so uninformed that you think all the roads you drive on were built by state highway department workers? Seriously?

"Sounds like you fancy yourself a healthcare provider. Methinks you are one of those teabaggers who likes to pretend you know something about government when you clearly know how to do one thing - turn on Glenn Beck. Sad."

I know what I do for a living, little one, as do plenty of people on this message board. You are evidently one of those *-bags who needs the government to wipe his posterior end for him, and thinks anyone who challenges the need for a nanny-state must be listening to Limbaugh or Beck.

By the way, ronnie, if it wasn't for the pabalum you've been getting spoon-fed from MSNBC, and you actually had to think for yourself, can you come up with some justification for the government doing everything for you?

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mr_right_wing 4 years, 4 months ago

Babble Boy (aka BABBOY)

In a society that embraces capitalism, privatising government services is encouraged (as well as deregulation). A society that embraces socialism provides services almost exclusively through government, and what government doesn't provide is very heavily regulated.

So what is the point of our state government taking this step when our President is going the opposite way? We no longer embrace capitalism in this country. We may as well be consistent with our socialism (at local, state and federal levels.)

I apologize if this explanation is beyond your grasp.

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Godot 4 years, 4 months ago

Nope. Just another layer of bureacracy open to corruption. Think KTECH, for example. My view is, if it can be "privatized," (which is just another term for a government agency hiring a contractor), it is a dead-on signal that it should not even be a function of government. If the private sector can do it, pay its employees and make a profit, why should the government be involved?

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gccs14r 4 years, 4 months ago

Never underestimate the value of having complete control of your workflow. Once you're dependent upon a vendor, you can no longer promise anything to your customers with 100% confidence. If your customer asks you to do something and the vendor who handles that part of your business says no, you're stuck. Your customer won't care how much money you saved by sending his work to India if your operation becomes inflexible as a result.

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Newell_Post 4 years, 4 months ago

BTW, I have been both a buyer and a seller of outsourcing services in both the public and private sectors, and I have rarely seen anyone save money by outsourcing. Any vendor of outsourcing services has to make a profit on the services and they also have types of overhead expenses the "buyer" doesn't have on its own workforce. If the "buyer" is willing to actively manage its own functions and workforce, it can usually do the work cheaper than any vendor provided the workload is fairly constant. If the workload fluctuates, an outsourcing vendor can sometimes save money for the "buyer" by flexing the workforce between multiple customer accounts.

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Newell_Post 4 years, 4 months ago

I actually think FedEx vs. US Postal Service is an excellent example of how public-private competition and cooperation improves the whole system and benefit the customer.

USPS has greatly improved their reliability since they started getting competition from FedEx. In part, I know this because I used to know one of the Postmasters General who created many of the modern improvements to USPS. One recent improvement by USPS is the "flat rate shipping boxes." Admittedly, they are a little slower than FedEx or UPS, but in some cases are also about 1/3 the cost.

If I need to send some paperwork to New York, I have a choice. I can pay the USPS 44 cents for a first class stamp, or FedEx $20 for an overnight envelope. FedEx is faster and a little more reliable and sometimes I pay them the $20. However, 2 or 3 days is usually fast enough and regular mail almost always gets there OK, so I usually go with first class mail.

What is important is that I can choose between the costs and features of the public and private options. And competition between the two makes both better. USPS pays FedEx to fly some of their airmail, and FedEx pays USPS to deliver some rural parcels, so cooperation between the two helps me even more.

I wish I had the same choice in medical insurance....

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dinglesmith 4 years, 4 months ago

Both UPS and FedEx drop their packages off at the Post Office for delivery to unprofitable, rural addresses. It's cheaper for them to pay the Post Office than to deliver themselves.

Medicaid cannot turn anyone who qualifies away. Nor can they raise premiums. Try getting private insurance with a chronic illness like juvenile onset diabetes towards the end of your life.

I did have my car inspected by private sector providers when I lived in Missouri. You either go to a friend who does a wink-and-nod or you go to a shop that holds your car hostage to all the little things they find wrong. Can't drive it anywhere because it didn't pass inspection. Gotta fix it there.

Face it, there are things the government does better than the private sector. There are lots of things it doesn't. The trick is knowing the difference.

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bobberboy 4 years, 4 months ago

That's what the Koch brothers would love to see.

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ronwell_dobbs 4 years, 4 months ago

notajayhawk,

I'd like for you to explain to me how a for-profit company could provide point-to-point service for delivery of a few pieces of paper in between any one of perhaps 200,000,000 different addresses for $0.44 per letter. Please explain.

Also, please explain how a for-profit company could provide a network of interconnected roads with engineering specifications all the way from Interstate highways down to county-maintained dirt roads and remain in business.

Sounds like you fancy yourself a healthcare provider. Methinks you are one of those teabaggers who likes to pretend you know something about government when you clearly know how to do one thing - turn on Glenn Beck. Sad.

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notajayhawk 4 years, 4 months ago

ilikebutter (Anonymous) says…

"The funny thing is, that for all your rhetoric, Medicaid/Medicare and the Post Office are pretty expertly run. I don't expect you to comprehend that, because it is much easier to just repeat what you are told."

Uh, yeah.

Except for one little detail, butter.

I'm a Medicare and Medicaid provider. I think I know just a little more about it than what I've been told. And your own source of expertise is what, again?

And if you'd bothered to read my posts before putting in your 2 cents worth (actually that's more than it's worth), or followed the link I provided, maybe you would have some idea of the poor service level I was talking about that has nothing to do with whether the beneficiaries are elderly or infirm. (And Medicaid covers a lot of kids, too, butter, and they don't cost a lot in medical bills.) But hey, get back in line for another spoonful of pabalum.


tomatogrower (Anonymous) says…

"They can just go and die, then we won't have to spend money on any of these peons and we can make some business man even richer."

Oh, so we should all have worse service that costs more just so nobody will make a profit. The class jealousy so rampant in Larryville is mind-boggling.

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Gabriel Engeland 4 years, 4 months ago

Notajayhawk: Actually the Post Office and Medicaid are shining examples of institutions the government runs because of the inability of the market to do so. UPS and FedEx are able to be profitable because they focus solely on package delivery and don't have to worry about areas of business that are not profitable, i.e., mail delivery. Medicaid is the same. Private insurers cannot afford to cover the elderly or the poor, enter the government which does. The funny thing is, that for all your rhetoric, Medicaid/Medicare and the Post Office are pretty expertly run. I don't expect you to comprehend that, because it is much easier to just repeat what you are told.

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Leslie Swearingen 4 years, 4 months ago

I like the idea of programs where everyone fills out the same forms and qualifies, or not, for the same reason. This makes the process impartial and fair.

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tomatogrower 4 years, 4 months ago

Yes, let's outsource to companies that don't provide insurance and other benefits to their employees. That will really lower health costs. They can just go and die, then we won't have to spend money on any of these peons and we can make some business man even richer. (disgusted sarcasm intended)

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notajayhawk 4 years, 4 months ago

gccs14r (Anonymous) says…

"Once profit enters the picture, serivce goes down and costs go up."

What planet are you from? Are you seriously saying that the Post Office, the DMV, and Medicaid are shining examples of better service and lower costs?

Or let's take mr_right_wing's example of liquor stores. I used to manage a bar in a control state. You could only place liquor orders once per week. If you ran out of something, too bad. And you couldn't overstock even if you wanted to absorb the cost of doing so, because all the bottles carried a control sticker with the order-week number and the state would seriously jump your s*** if you had bottles in stock that were too old. You could only order from one store, which was designated when you got your liquor license. (Ours was 20 miles away, despite the fact there was one across the street.) You would think that all the state run stores carried the same products, but such was not the case. If your store didn't carry something you (or, more importantly, your customers) wanted, too bad. The orders had to be called in a day in advance. By the stock numbers. In order.

Oh, and you had to drive out there and pick it up yourself.

If you'd ever lived in Missouri, you'd know the difference between going to one of the privately operated DMV satellite offices rather than one of the state-run offices. And for a laugh, call the Kansas Medicaid number and listen to the recorded greeting - it goes something like 'Due to state budget cuts, we have fewer employees working and your hold time may be excessive...'

Great system. Yeah, let's keep public employees who are virtually immune to disciplinary action, let alone termination (except during any recessionary period when they get laid off - but not replaced), who have absolutely no incentive to either hold down costs or deliver satisfactory service, run everything.

No thanks. Bring on the privatization.

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gccs14r 4 years, 4 months ago

Once profit enters the picture, serivce goes down and costs go up.

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BABBOY 4 years, 4 months ago

Mr. Right Wing:

I do not think you understood the question moron.

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fastwalker 4 years, 4 months ago

Said I loved you but I lied - Michael Bolton

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mr_right_wing 4 years, 4 months ago

.....that wouldn't go over well with our socialist President though (who wants to nationalize just about everything.)

I'm guessing he is admiring Canada where the government runs all liquor stores.

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