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Author Topic: With no taxes, what about firestations and garbage service?  (Read 10111 times)
Hawker
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October 04, 2011, 10:03:01 PM
 #81


Honestly, my experience of running a residents company is that some people won't pay unless you take them to the courtroom steps.  Just because someone across town was forced to pay at the last moment, many others will think "I will wait until I have a fire and then pay" and the whole service suffers from not having the income stream that allows it to purchase kit.

Did you have an argument to refute my 'mortgage & homeowners insurance' response to the "free rider problem"?  Or are you just musing about the difficulties that some people will impose upon a bill collector?

The difficulties for the bill collector will be the issue for those with mortgages.  Its the cash owners that you'll find harder to deal with.

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October 04, 2011, 10:25:16 PM
 #82


Honestly, my experience of running a residents company is that some people won't pay unless you take them to the courtroom steps.  Just because someone across town was forced to pay at the last moment, many others will think "I will wait until I have a fire and then pay" and the whole service suffers from not having the income stream that allows it to purchase kit.

Did you have an argument to refute my 'mortgage & homeowners insurance' response to the "free rider problem"?  Or are you just musing about the difficulties that some people will impose upon a bill collector?

The difficulties for the bill collector will be the issue for those with mortgages.  Its the cash owners that you'll find harder to deal with.

You are projecting your experiences with an anticilliry institution (a residents company) to that of a protection service with a real, and significant, natural consequence for failure to pay.  Avoiding paying the homeowners' association membership fee is free interest, if there is little or no risk of adverse consequences for delay.  Large corporations do this kind of thing all of the time.  It's why they still wait to the following Friday to pay for last week's wages despite owning computerized payment systems that could literally pay you daily for today's wages.  They don't delay with payments to their own insurance companies.  Certainly some homeowners would forget or delay, but it would likely be high on the priority list for anyone who actually owned property.

"The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the systems was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank...sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world."

- Carroll Quigley, CFR member, mentor to Bill Clinton, from 'Tragedy And Hope'
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October 04, 2011, 11:33:29 PM
 #83

As for the free rider thing....perhaps you missed the part where I received a letter in the mail that said "pay $20" per month or pay per service.

So if your house is on fire but you did not pay your monthly fee they will put the fire out. Then you get a bill for $2,000 which is covered by insurance.

Sure, you could say that that is not very free because they force you to pay even if you do not want it.

As for your example of a bunch of houses next to each other.

There was recently a news article about someone who did not pay for the fire service. This is what happened:
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/39516346/ns/us_news-life/t/no-pay-no-spray-firefighters-let-home-burn/

"No Pay, No Spray"

personally, I would have allowed the guy to promise to make the $2,000 payment if he really wanted it put out...but a fire company can let a house burn...

And just a personal FYI...if your house is on fire beyond just a simple kitchen fire...let it burn to the ground. The cost to clean up and fix your house is more than just clearing out some rubble and starting from scratch. And you get the full amount of insurance if it is completely destroyed.

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October 05, 2011, 01:24:38 AM
 #84

personally, I would have allowed the guy to promise to make the $2,000 payment if he really wanted it put out...but a fire company can let a house burn...

One problem with that is that if you do that then it might be the case that nobody will pay until their house is on fire and there won't be any money to maintain the service. It's kind of like the problem with health insurance. If you allow people with pre-existing conditions to join then nobody will join until they are sick.
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October 05, 2011, 01:26:47 AM
 #85

A fire company would probably charge a large fine for putting out a fire on a house that wasn't covered.
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October 05, 2011, 01:30:06 AM
 #86

A fire company would probably charge a large fine for putting out a fire on a house that wasn't covered.

It doesn't matter how much you are willing to pay if nobody can afford to maintain trucks and trained labor in the interim.
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October 05, 2011, 01:35:42 AM
 #87

A fire company would probably charge a large fine for putting out a fire on a house that wasn't covered.

It doesn't matter how much you are willing to pay if nobody can afford to maintain trucks and trained labor in the interim.
If that actually happens, I am sure businesses, at the absolute least, will maintain a fire company. It's not something people will live without.
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October 05, 2011, 05:02:57 AM
 #88

Those prices are inflated due to the horrible inefficiency of our fire departments with the guaranteed wages and excess benefits. They aren't accurate of what market prices with profit-incentive would be.

Or so you conveniently speculate because it fits your paradigm. Do you know how trucks are built? Let's take something much simpler, such as a tow truck. These are sold to private companies. How does the business model of truck building work? Do you know? I do.
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October 05, 2011, 06:44:19 AM
 #89

A fire company would probably charge a large fine for putting out a fire on a house that wasn't covered.

It doesn't matter how much you are willing to pay if nobody can afford to maintain trucks and trained labor in the interim.
If that actually happens, I am sure businesses, at the absolute least, will maintain a fire company. It's not something people will live without.

Um have you ever travelled?  There are lots of towns that need decent fire services all over the world but don't have it as they can't afford it.

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October 05, 2011, 09:18:32 AM
 #90

If they did not do a good job I would just call another company.


At first there will be several companies competing each other, but eventually they will be merged/bought by super captalists and then capital will take over the operation, finally end up in the bank's control

And, if the banks did not do a good job, you have no other choice

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October 05, 2011, 12:20:43 PM
 #91

If they did not do a good job I would just call another company.


At first there will be several companies competing each other, but eventually they will be merged/bought by super captalists and then capital will take over the operation, finally end up in the bank's control

And, if the banks did not do a good job, you have no other choice

You mean like how there's only one pizza delivery company? One email company? One search engine company? One almost-anything-company?
The Script
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October 05, 2011, 07:12:27 PM
 #92

...snip...

I don't really understand the mining part, it will exist as long as bitcoin does or the other way around if you want.

Once we reach 21 million bitcoin, all mining stops. 

Really?  You have over 800 forum posts and still don't understand how bitcoin's encentives work?

Correct.  I thought it would never reach 22 million.

Was I wrong?

seems to me that you trolling Hawker...  Huh

It's a matter of semantics. The fact is Bitcoin will require computing power in order to function no matter if all the Bitcoins will be claimed. People will still run Bitcoin miners in the far future but to only collect fees. This can be still considered mining but only to facilitate transactions.

I don't think they will be generating more than 22 million bitcoin though?  So it won't really be mining - just payment processing.  Or have I misunderstood?
There will never be more than 21 million as you stated earlier, but it's an asymptotic approach and will take more than just a couple years.  We have another 10 or 15 years before we even get close.  There will always be some mining because of the incentive of the last few bitcoins and the transaction costs (along as bitcoins still have value and don't completely crash).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Total_bitcoins_over_time.png

It seems to me you need to do a little research.

What I said is correct, so I am going to assume you are talking to paraipanakos. Otherwise you need to put forth proof to show that I am wrong.
Hawker
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October 05, 2011, 07:16:30 PM
 #93


seems to me that you trolling Hawker...  Huh


There will never be more than 21 million as you stated earlier, but it's an asymptotic approach and will take more than just a couple years.  We have another 10 or 15 years before we even get close.  There will always be some mining because of the incentive of the last few bitcoins and the transaction costs (along as bitcoins still have value and don't completely crash).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Total_bitcoins_over_time.png

It seems to me you need to do a little research.

What I said is correct, so I am going to assume you are talking to paraipanakos. Otherwise you need to put forth proof to show that I am wrong.

I was quoting you as he felt I was trolling when I said that there would not be 22 million Bitcoin ever.   

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October 05, 2011, 09:16:11 PM
 #94

If they did not do a good job I would just call another company.


At first there will be several companies competing each other, but eventually they will be merged/bought by super captalists and then capital will take over the operation, finally end up in the bank's control

And, if the banks did not do a good job, you have no other choice

Sure I do, start a co-op with my neighbors.  If their service sucks, someone is going to come along and eat their lunch.

"The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the systems was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank...sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world."

- Carroll Quigley, CFR member, mentor to Bill Clinton, from 'Tragedy And Hope'
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October 08, 2011, 04:42:31 PM
 #95

BTW http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_firefighting "Modern development" has some non-speculation-based stuff about for-profit firefighters.

It's the same reason we end up with the idea of artificially capping the supply of taxi-cabs.  IMO the problem isn't that nobody wants to do these jobs or that there is no money to be made in it, which results in municipal socialization of these services.  Quite the opposite, in fact.

Economists love to shrug off market inefficiencies as mere "frictions," and there is nothing wrong with that analogy except that it may suggest that these inefficiencies are small.  Just as there is a coefficient of friction, beyond which, "frictive" forces equilibriate with "non-frictive" forces and cause motion to cease, under the right circumstances these economic "frictions" may prevent the wonderful, happy free market from realizing its beautiful inner-wholesomeness, and make us all miserable by equilibriating with market forces expected to deliver improvements to utility.

If market fundamentalists want to be taken seriously, they need to get a handle on this fact.  Most of them are, to continue the analogy, trying to sell us perpetual-motion machines that won't work.  In my opinion this is setting mankind way back, because the benefits of real economic freedom -- the hard, actually-works kind that won't magically bestow it's benefits on us without some hard decisions and difficult sacrifices -- are nowhere to be seen.  Instead, most economies are allowed by their constituents to be largely run by a lot of crazy ass motherfuckers that give economic freedom a bad name.

IMO this is why almost everybody thinks economic freedom is the most horrible thing imaginable and should be avoided at all costs.  That's a dangerous idea for an increasingly democratic world.

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October 08, 2011, 09:42:02 PM
 #96

As for the free rider thing....perhaps you missed the part where I received a letter in the mail that said "pay $20" per month or pay per service.

Wow, seems like a rip-off.

Here in Toronto, our fire services cost us about $12/month fully paid for by taxes. The free market does not always provide the most efficient solution, notably in areas of "natural monopoly", like fire services, roads, etc.

2010 fire services budget $359 million
Population of Toronto 2.5 million (2006)

Sources:

http://www.toronto.ca/fire/annual_report/pdf/tfs_2010_annual_report.pdf
http://www12.statcan.ca/census-recensement/2006/dp-pd/prof/92-591/details/Page.cfm?Lang=E&Geo1=CSD&Code1=3520005&Geo2=PR&Code2=35&Data=Count&SearchText=Toronto&SearchType=Begins&SearchPR=01&B1=All&Custom=

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October 09, 2011, 12:51:52 AM
 #97

As for the free rider thing....perhaps you missed the part where I received a letter in the mail that said "pay $20" per month or pay per service.

Wow, seems like a rip-off.

Here in Toronto, our fire services cost us about $12/month fully paid for by taxes. The free market does not always provide the most efficient solution, notably in areas of "natural monopoly", like fire services, roads, etc.

2010 fire services budget $359 million
Population of Toronto 2.5 million (2006)


Toronto is a big city, with a completely differnet market dynamic.  You can't even know how much cheaper a mature & competitive private fire protection market could be.  You can't know if it might be $8 monthy for a home.  I'd bet that the relative costs of fire protection in NYC are vanishingly small.  It's a city of concrete and steel.  Toronto is pretty much likewise, is it not?

"The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the systems was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank...sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world."

- Carroll Quigley, CFR member, mentor to Bill Clinton, from 'Tragedy And Hope'
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October 09, 2011, 02:40:52 AM
 #98

Toronto is a big city, with a completely differnet market dynamic.  You can't even know how much cheaper a mature & competitive private fire protection market could be.  You can't know if it might be $8 monthy for a home.  I'd bet that the relative costs of fire protection in NYC are vanishingly small.  It's a city of concrete and steel.  Toronto is pretty much likewise, is it not?

A simple Google search shows plenty of suburbs in Toronto.
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October 09, 2011, 02:43:12 AM
 #99

Toronto is a big city, with a completely differnet market dynamic.  You can't even know how much cheaper a mature & competitive private fire protection market could be.  You can't know if it might be $8 monthy for a home.  I'd bet that the relative costs of fire protection in NYC are vanishingly small.  It's a city of concrete and steel.  Toronto is pretty much likewise, is it not?

You're absolutely right that I can't know what the costs would be if there were a competitive market for fire protection would be. We can however take an educated guess that costs would be higher. This is due to the nature of fire services. An ideal fire service would have evenly distributed, well-equipped stations in order to respond to an emergency situation in as short a time as possible with the best possible equipment and staff. In a competitive market we would end up with a situation where we would either a) have multiple providers, each with fewer stations b) have multiple providers with an equivalent distribution of stations, but with less equipment and/or staff at each location c) one large provider with a de-facto monopoly on providing fire services throughout the city with even distribution of well-equipped stations.

The result:

a,b) we have good choice of provider, but there is not one provider that is as well-equipped or quick to respond as the public option. This situation occurs because unlike other markets, there is a finite demand for fire protection.
c) we have a good provider, but due to the fiduciary requirement of maximizing profit for owners/shareholders, we pay more than the public option. This can happen because the company has a de-facto monopoly and can charge more as they know they are the only good option. A company in this position can also use its cash for lobbying to make competitor entry into the market harder. This happens all the time in certain markets right now.

This is what I meant by the "natural monopoly" statement in my previous post. The same also holds true for other markets where a natural monopoly exists (mainly due to geographic constraints), for example the road system, sewers, water supply, last-mile copper/fibre/cable systems as well. Lots of other examples exist.

I for one would choose the public option. I would however be open to the idea of a third-party fire service if they were operated as a non-profit the same as the public option is. Another, less-desirable option would be to allow c) but only if it were highly regulated in order to prevent people from getting gouged. In the last case, it would be difficult to determine "fair" profits from a regulatory standpoint as well as being open to corruption.

BTW, Toronto is about 2/3 single family dwellings and small (<5 storey) apartments, as are many cities. http://www.toronto.ca/planning/pdf/housing_rental.pdf


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The Script
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October 10, 2011, 12:31:04 PM
 #100

As for the free rider thing....perhaps you missed the part where I received a letter in the mail that said "pay $20" per month or pay per service.

Wow, seems like a rip-off.

Here in Toronto, our fire services cost us about $12/month fully paid for by taxes. The free market does not always provide the most efficient solution, notably in areas of "natural monopoly", like fire services, roads, etc.

2010 fire services budget $359 million
Population of Toronto 2.5 million (2006)

Sources:

http://www.toronto.ca/fire/annual_report/pdf/tfs_2010_annual_report.pdf
http://www12.statcan.ca/census-recensement/2006/dp-pd/prof/92-591/details/Page.cfm?Lang=E&Geo1=CSD&Code1=3520005&Geo2=PR&Code2=35&Data=Count&SearchText=Toronto&SearchType=Begins&SearchPR=01&B1=All&Custom=

Out of the 2.5 million, how many of them are adult tax payers?  Just curious.  The math gets a little worse if we assume that not everyone pays taxes, either because they are not adults or because they are too poor.
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