When the state takes care of the infrastucture, like roads and bridges and similar, they know that a large part of that money will return in the form of tax and VAT and from the profit those private companies involved will make not to mention that the anount of unemployment fees might decrease. I cannot see any reason why any of that could be privatised.
Rail tracks are probably similar. There is however a interesting point in this article "But if the state is that of another country, then this problem rather goes away.".
What annoyes me here is that there is not even a shy, very shy, sort of very shy thought that perhaps there could perhaps be some guys is that foreign country who are, well, just better at doing the job. Did Worstall ever think about such a damned possibility or did he, but decided not to be unkind towards his Brittish readers. (Downvotes and such).
Or did he just pick the first new buzzword available "foreign", an other country, a new solution.
Well, I don't know but I would have a lot more respect for "economists" if for once they would mention words like education.
It does not matter if something is private or not, run by idiots it will fail either way.
The thing that worries me much to day is that we seem to live in an illusion that when the country we live in is "educated" then our kids will inherit it in some automatic way. Education is like washing dishes, as soon as you stop for a while it's a complete mess. Forget it for a generaion and the next generation of kids will have uneducated teachers and then it will only get worse. And yes, I am looking at you Amercans "too".
Before any Amercan tells me - "but Lars we have more Nobels than anybody else and we have some of the best universities too". Which is very true, but the damned thing is that education for just the few has never worked and never will.
The damned thing is that education in the capitalist world is in decline. Not so in the third world.
In Sweden the word "education for profit" has become a bad word, perhaps not without good reasons.
Privatisation has risks too.
As for" The Purpose of Government, slightly leaning on JFK ... don't ask the governmen... I would add, "just educate all those fucking kids regardles of parents and what ever then let us build this fucking society the way we want it to be".
What ever we have to day, in this world, is the sum of education and lack of it, it has allways been like that and will allways remain that way.
The day an economist starts his tirade witth the word education I will have more respect for him.