McWilliams: Defending what’s left of free market
On Friday, March 17, the Post Independent published an op-ed by the Garfield County Democrat Party chairwoman, Debbie Bruell, whereby she excoriated Garfield County Commissioners Mike Samson, John Martin, and Tom Jankovsky for their public opposition to a proposed modular home (recycled steel) factory in Rifle.
The factory is a “public/NGO partnership” with no private capitalization. The project is touted as a “training facility” and “modular home factory,” to be owned by a “public/NGO partnership” among the city of Rifle, Habitat for Humanity of the Roaring Fork Valley, and an unknown NGO, the Colorado River Board of Cooperative Educational Services.
The “Rifle public/NGO partnership” is seeking a federal grant to finance the modular home factory on industrial land presumably donated by the city of Rifle. Commissioners Samson, Martin, and Jankovsky were portrayed in the Bruell op-ed as three heartless capitalists who are opposed to hard-working citizens in their pursuit of affordable housing.
Clearly the economic model for Garfield County is now the socialism foretold by Joseph Schumpeter and F.A. Hayek. This “public/NGO partnership” in Rifle is a microcosm of what has happened nationwide to our former economy of neoclassical economics. And it should frighten all clear-eyed, private-property owners on what will happen next.
If the socialist leaning Debbie Bruell were using the scientific method instead of circular reasoning, her first step in due diligence for the socioeconomic reasons behind the lack of Garfield County affordable housing would be to study Henry George and his magnus opus “Progress and Poverty.”
However, because academic inquiry is not a priority in Western Slope politics, Bruell has digressed to an ad hominem assault on Samson, Martin, and Jonkovsky for the three Republican commissioners defending what is left of a free market.