Examining the abject failure of socialism on relatively minor issues exposes the horrific failure of socialism on the big issues including security, criminal justice, health care, running the economy and waging war. The ubiquitous failure of local governments to clear the roads of snow this winter is a perfect example. In a recent article regarding complaints about snow removal, the Dayton Daily News accidentally highlights how socialism perverts the minds of bureaucrats. Almost comically, all the bureaucrats in this article have the same point of view because they've all had their minds perverted by government employment.
The article begins, "The day after five inches of snow blanketed the Dayton region, some people questioned why their streets hadn’ been plowed, while others lamented about [sic] the large piles of heavy snow left behind in their driveways by city plows."
Those complaints are perfectly reasonable. Government steals money from the people, and it promises to clear the roads of snow in return. This isn't a bargain or contract. We're not customers. We can't negotiate. We can't refuse. The brigands steal our money and dictate terms. Still, people expect government to live up to its own terms. Instead government either doesn't show up or makes matters worse by burying cars and driveways under bigger snow piles. Some service.
The DDN reports how socialists feel about these complaints, "The complaints have left some officials feeling 'damned if they do and damned if they don’.'" Poor babies. This illustrates how socialism warps minds. Officials can't comprehend they're providing a terrible, counter-productive service, if they show up at all. It never crosses their minds they could and should improve it. One explicitly says, "“he complaints start out, when are you going to get to us?' said Kettering Public Service Director Dave Duritsch. Then the calls start coming in about plowed-in vehicles and plows dumping snow at driveway entrances. Unfortunately that’ unavoidable,' Duritsch said."
It's not unavoidable. Duritsch, like all government employees, makes money by stealing it in the form of taxes, so he's unable to perform economic calculation. He has no sales, no profits, and no losses to guide him to providing a better service. The mind of a person who can't perform economic calculation atrophies like the body of a bed-ridden person atrophies. Every bureaucrat quoted in this article shows the same symptoms for the same reason.
Imagine if Duritsch owned a snow removal business and had snow removal contracts. Imagine he didn't show up to fulfill some of those contracts, and the ones he did show up to, he buried cars and driveways in snow. Customers would not only complain; they would fire him. Duritsch would lose sales. Profits would turn to losses. After performing economic calculations, he would improve his service to avoid going bankrupt. The first change he would make would be to show up to fulfill all his contracts. The second change would be to insure every car on streets he cleared could pull out onto the street and every driveway was clear as well. He would innovate to out-compete his competitors and supply this improved service for less money than the government currently steals from us for the crappy service it provides, or doesn't bother to provide.
Dayton's Director of Public Works Fred Stovall echoes Duritsch, "Most of the complaints however have been from people who say the plow truck did come down their street, and deposited a pile of snow on the entrance to their driveway. We got 5 inches of snow,' Stovall said. 'There’ going to be some buildup.'"
These men seem not to realize plows can be applied intelligently and snow shovels exist. But more fundamentally, they aren't interested in cooperating with the serfs they lie about serving. They want us to shut up, kiss their rings, and appreciate their crappy service like the docile serfs government schools brainwashed us to be. The private sector economy of voluntary exchange promotes and rewards cooperation, peace and service that advances everybody's interests. The authoritarian political economy promotes us-versus-them divisiveness, frustration and anger and rewards bureaucrats for ever greater application of coercion at our expense.
For example, Englewood City Manager Eric Smith issues threats to ticket cars parked on the sides of roads. The article continues, "To date [Englewood] has issued 67 warning notices to move cars, but has not ticketed or towed any vehicles because owners have complied after receiving the warning." Talk about blaming the victim. First, socialists steal taxpayers' money, then mother nature dumps snow on roads, then socialists threaten to steal more money if drivers don't move their cars before snow plows bury them.
There's also a demonstrable lie in this article, "Dayton plow trucks usually don’ make it to residential streets unless the city gets more than 4 inches of snow, but Tuesday night’ snowfall prompted crews to make a pass at all streets." My street was not touched. That's typical. I doubt it was the only one.
Socialism is insane. Government snow removal is just another pseudo-service designed to steal more of our money, and it's a great success at that.