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America needs more jobs, not private debt collectors

Despite assurances that Sen. Charles Schumer’s proposal to privatize collection of delinquent taxpayers “has been structured in [such] a way [as] to avoid the problems that occurred the last two times the government tried turning over tax collections to the private sector,” when the program lost money both times, according to taxpayer advocate Nina E. Olson, the idea remains fundamentally flawed.

Besides, as Olson argues, putting a “bulls-eye on the backs of low-income taxpayers” and likely making debt collectors the public face of President Obama’s health care program, feeds directly into the meme that government is inefficient or incompetent (especially when deliberately starved for funding).

The push to privatization is always sold as saving taxpayers money, but privatization is really about putting public money into private hands; any “savings” to taxpayers will likely prove chimeral.

It is sad that the senator sees parasitism – largely on the backs of the poor – as the solution to our crying need for jobs instead of manufacturing.

Douglas Aerie

Buffalo