New Events

International

no events posted in last week

Blog Feeds

Anti-Empire

Anti-Empire

offsite link ‘Reduced Service’ Sat Jun 18, 2022 11:37 | Anti-Empire

offsite link Inconvenient Questions for the “Specia... Wed Jun 15, 2022 16:32 | Anti-Empire

offsite link Who Dares Apply Anti-Interventionist Ana... Tue Jun 14, 2022 11:15 | Anti-Empire

offsite link Kiev Puts Its Military Deaths at 10,000 ... Mon Jun 13, 2022 05:58 | Anti-Empire

offsite link Rosgvard Wasn’t Told They’d Be Going... Sun Jun 12, 2022 14:24 | Rolo Slavsky

Anti-Empire >>

The Saker
A bird's eye view of the vineyard

offsite link Putin: Address to participants of 10th St Petersburg International Legal Forum Thu Jun 30, 2022 12:24 | amarynth
Address to participants of 10th St Petersburg International Legal Forum Vladimir Putin gave a video address to greet the participants of a plenary session of the 10th St Petersburg International Legal Forum. This year?s plenary session was themed Law

offsite link Sergey Lavrov: Roundtable discussion SCO Treaties Thu Jun 30, 2022 12:07 | amarynth
Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov?s video address to the organisers of and participants in the roundtable discussion dedicated to the 20th anniversary of the SCO Charter and the 15th anniversary of

offsite link Paradoxically, the Soviet Union, the ultimate symbol of communism, was created by international bank... Thu Jun 30, 2022 11:01 | amarynth
By Guilherme Wilbert for the Saker Blog One of the great post-World War II myths, which is repeated like a mantra by starched college students with a syndrome of embracing

offsite link Douglas MacGregor: Its collapsed Wed Jun 29, 2022 23:51 | amarynth

offsite link Michael Hudson interviewed by Ben Norton (Multipolarista) Wed Jun 29, 2022 11:59 | amarynth
Economist Michael Hudson on inflation and Fed plan to cut wages: A depression is coming  

The Saker >>

Lockdown Skeptics

The Daily Sceptic

offsite link Children Need to be Taught to See Through The Lies Thu Jun 30, 2022 13:14 | Mark Shaw
How can we be protected from the sort of fraud we have endured over the last few years? How can we improve risk evaluation and keep our guard? It should start at school, with children taught to think for themselves.
The post Children Need to be Taught to See Through The Lies appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link South Korea, Poster Child for Containment Strategy, Now Has Same Excess Mortality as Sweden Thu Jun 30, 2022 08:02 | Noah Carl
South Korea was the poster child for the 'contain and vaccinate' strategy. However, it now has the same excess mortality as Sweden, and almost all South Korea's deaths occurred after the vaccine rollout.
The post South Korea, Poster Child for Containment Strategy, Now Has Same Excess Mortality as Sweden appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link ONS Data Suggest Vaccine Effectiveness Against Death Has Been Overestimated Thu Jun 30, 2022 07:00 | Nick Rendell
Analysis of ONS data suggests that Covid deaths do not decrease as much as would be expected once the vaccines kick-in, adding to evidence that vaccine efficacy has been overestimated.
The post ONS Data Suggest Vaccine Effectiveness Against Death Has Been Overestimated appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link News Round-Up Thu Jun 30, 2022 00:32 | Will Jones
A summary of all the most interesting stories that have appeared about politicians? efforts to control the virus ? and other acts of hubris and folly ? not just in Britain, but around the world.
The post News Round-Up appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link Anthony Fauci Gets Covid Again After ?Paxlovid Rebound?, Feeling ?Much Worse? Wed Jun 29, 2022 21:20 | Will Jones
White House Chief Medical Adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci confirmed on Tuesday that he is suffering from "Covid rebound" symptoms after being treated with Paxlovid and is now feeling "much worse" than before the treatment.
The post Anthony Fauci Gets Covid Again After ‘Paxlovid Rebound’, Feeling “Much Worse” appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

Lockdown Skeptics >>

Voltaire Network
Voltaire, international edition

offsite link Ecstasy lab seized on Kleine-Brogel NATO base Thu Jun 30, 2022 07:33 | en

offsite link Discordance among Israeli officials over Iran Thu Jun 30, 2022 07:10 | en

offsite link Soldiers sent by Western countries fighting in Ukraine Wed Jun 29, 2022 18:16 | en

offsite link The scuttling of peace in Europe, by Thierry Meyssan Wed Jun 29, 2022 17:29 | en

offsite link Russia threatens Western decision-making centers Wed Jun 29, 2022 06:36 | en

Voltaire Network >>

Search words: education

The Spectre Haunting Europe

category international | economics and finance | other press author Monday December 04, 2017 23:21author by 1 of indy Report this post to the editors

This is a repost of an recent article (Dec 1st) by economic analyst and trade unionist Michael Taft on www.tasc.ie covering the good news trend where there is now a trend in Europe of reversing privatisations. And that is certainly something positive.

There is a spectre haunting Europe – the spectre of de-privatisation, re-municipalisation, and re-nationalisation. Local, regional and national Governments throughout Europe and in other countries - fed up with high costs, low investment, deteriorating quality and poor working conditions – are taking services back into public control and ownership. For many, privatisation has produced poor results; now they are starting to reverse that process. Public ownership is back on the agenda.

reclaiming_public_services_cover.jpg

The Transnational Institute has published a comprehensive report: ‘Reclaiming Public Services: How Cities and Citizens are Turning Back Privatisation’. at https://www.tni.org/files/publication-downloads/reclaim...s.pdf
They not only provide case studies but provide an exhaustive catalogue of the cities and states that have brought public service back into public control.

Overall, they list 835 de-privatisations at all levels of government, but mostly at local/regional government since most countries have far stronger local governments than in Ireland. This followed a wave of privatisations and out-sourcing in the 1980s and 1990s. A number of economic activities have been impacted.


  • Energy was the largest sector for de-privatisations (311) with most occurring in Germany
  • Water was the second largest sector (267) with France accounting for nearly 40 percent
  • General local government services was next up with 140. These cover a range of services: cleaning, security, housing, school catering, sports, etc. Interestingly, the UK – the ideological home of privatisations - led this list.

There were de-privatisations in waste services, public transport, education services, and health care and social work.

The activities go beyond what might be considered traditional public services and traditional public ownership. For instance, Vienna has re-municipalised theatres and cinemas some of which are now under the control of associations manged by workers and citizens. This shows that public ownership doesn’t necessarily mean the ‘state’ – it can also mean civil society groups taking charge of activities. In Mouans-Sartoux, France, municipality even bought a piece of farmland and employed a farmer to provide the local school restaurants with 100 per cent organic food.

In many cases, de-privatisation occurred for largely defensive reasons. Costa and were rising, investment was falling, working conditions were deteriorating and/or the quality of the service was falling. In other cases, the local government was creating new activity or wanted to co-ordinate the activity with other public goals. Underlining all this, however, was the experience that privatisation wasn’t working.

In Ireland, there are only two examples, both in Northern Ireland: hospital cleaning and waste recycling (Banbridge District Council). In the Republic, we can only surmise that privatisation is doing great and has no need of reform; or that we don’t evaluate and act upon the results. I suspect the latter.

Take bin services, for example. I have written on this topic previously:

‘The bin charges debacle is spiralling into chaos. We have areas where two or three or four bin companies operate and other areas where companies are threatening to leave; escalating charges becoming an intolerable burden on many low-income households; considerable price variations between counties; off-shored private companies pursuing wage suppression to increase profits; considerable illegal dumping; charges for recycling which dis-incentivises a social good; and on and on. This is not a waste management policy; it is a circus.’

There is a strong argument for returning waste collection to public ownership. This doesn’t necessarily mean that local government or a public agency would direct supply the service, though it could; they could tender – but for whole markets (e.g. Cork City Council could tender for all of Cork). Regardless of the process, there would need to be public oversight, strong labour regulations, price controls and transparent financial accounts.

But there are positive reasons to extend public ownership – either through local agencies or civil society organisations. We saw that in Somerset, Kentucky, the local council set up a public petrol station to take on the price-cartel operated by the private providers. In other cases, public ownership can earn profits and dividends from commercial activities which can then be re-invested into public services. In still other areas, public ownership can provide economy activity in depressed areas where private capital is in short supply.

In short, there is an opportunity to re-invent public services and public ownership. This is what they are doing in other jurisdictions. Let’s hope that the spectre haunting Europe reaches our shores sometime in the near future.

Note: the list of re-municipalisations start on page 178 of the report linked above

Related Link: https://www.tasc.ie/blog/2017/12/01/the-spectre-haunting-europe/

PDF Document Reclaiming Public Services: How Cities and Citizens are Turning Back Privatisation (PDF) 1.77 Mb


© 2001-2022 Independent Media Centre Ireland. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by Independent Media Centre Ireland. Disclaimer | Privacy