13 March, 2010

Public transportation for BiH students must be free. Really?

It was just recently that public university students made a peaceful march in streets of Sarajevo, protesting against governments' failure to deliver free transportation to students as promised.
Reaction of general public to this action of students has been positive and supportive of their cause, which only confirms the fact that the belief in socialism and big government is alive and well in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The following is the, rarely ever considered, libertarian point of view on this issue: 
First, it has to be pointed out that government promise to provide students with free transportation really seems like a noble cause worth supporting.  Free things for the students, investing into the future of our country, who wouldn't be for that?  Furthermore, the very act of students protesting is a very positive thing, as it means exercising the basic human rights of free speech and freedom of assembly.  Finally, holding the government accountable and demanding fulfillment of their promises is another positive aspect of this student protest, and such action should be encouraged.

However, citizens (including students) too-often value government policies by their good intentions, and rarely ever think about the negative consequences of such policies, including paying attention to the socialist methods, for the benefit of one group and at the expense of another, in which they are almost always achieved.  Where will the necessary annual 3 million KM for this noble cause come from?  Does government create wealth, or it forcefully takes fruits of people's labor in order to fulfill their promises and save their comfortable seats?  Could this too be just another deception by politicians designed to buy votes for the coming elections?

And the final argument, people always seem to fail to remember history and the poor results of all government involvement in doing good for them.  Why would anyone give job to someone who has the long history of delivering failures after failures?

So is it finally time for the people (and students) of Bosnia and Herzegovina to seriously start questioning the reality and correctness of governments' good intentions, as well as its ability to deliver the promised services before saying "yes please!"?  So should students re-think about this promise and maybe say no to it?  I think so!

And so to the government: if it really wants to help students, then it should abolish the state monopoly over the public education and allow the free market competition to provide the best and the cheapest education that taxpayers' money can buy.  This would mean freedom of parents and students to choose schools and teachers of their liking, rewarding the best and running out of work those undeserving.