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Steve Ahlquist is an award-winning journalist, writer, artist and founding member of the Humanists of Rhode Island, a non-profit group dedicated to reason, compassion, optimism, courage and action. The views expressed are his own and not necessarily those of any organization of which he is a member.

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"We must take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.” - Elie Weisel

“If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor." - Desmond Tutu

"There comes a time when neutrality and laying low become dishonorable. If you’re not in revolt, you’re in cahoots. When this period and your name are mentioned, decades hence, your grandkids will look away in shame." - David Brooks

2 responses to “Is the Public-Private Partnerships Commission asking the right questions?”

  1. cailin rua

    “Parkinson cites a story about the rapid bridge replacement program in Pennsylvania, where . . . ”

    Interestingly, I searched for Ellen Dannin’s Toll Road to Serfdom and found something from Trillium board member, Peter Kinder, who promotes “social justice” by way of billionaire adulation:

    “Today’s deals still include … terms intended to make the toll road drivers’ only alternative. Commonly found “noncompete” terms forbid building or improving “competing” road or mass transit systems. They may also require what is called “traffic calming” but which means by narrowing lanes or making other changes to make alternative routes unpleasant or less useful. Other contract terms require that the government “partner” compensate private contractors for “adverse actions,” such as promoting car pooling to lower air pollution and urban congestion that could affect revenues. For the next 40 years, the HOT lanes contract with Transurban of Australia and Fluor Corporation of Texas requires Virginia to reimburse the private companies whenever Capital Beltway carpools exceed 24 percent of the traffic on the carpool lanes – or until the builders make $100 million in profits.”

    Kinder even mentions what happened in Pence/Daniels’ Indiana after flooding and the half million dollars paid out to compensate a corporation for “lost profits” that Dannin has written about.

    http://thebell.us/2011/03/the-toll-road-to-serfdom-privatization-takes-us-back-to-the-future/

    The foxes are here to protect the hen house. Among them are even those who would point out the larcenous nature of the hoards neo-liberals running wild in the halls of government.

    Capitalism will never save us, even “socially responsible” capitalism. “Socially responsible” capitalism is not just an oxymoron that only morons could possibly believe in. It’s an outright contradiction in terms and P3s are merely a wedge to get a foot in a door that will be very violently slammed in our collective faces once the corporate parasites are inside it if we ever attempt to see what they’re up to next.

    I have some names of people whose work needs to be followed up on – Ellen Dannin, Rachel Weber, Sharon Zucker. All these writers focus on the deleterious effects left in the wake of carpetbaggers like the ones who who have invaded the R I Statehouse, which seems to be run by their enablers.

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  2. cailin rua

    sorry, Sharon Zukin, not “Sharon Zucker”.

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