Like all Finns, like most Nordic folk, I am in favor of keeping basic public services, healthcare, education and public transport, firmly in the public domain. It is cheaper and rather cost effective compared to the UK and the US where you have to pay much more for private “this and that”. Even though taxes are lower in both countries, you end up paying much, much more. Education, healthcare and public transport are pretty good here too, and give value for our money.
We need to keep the public sector on its toes so limited competition from the private sector is always important and that we allow within agreed confines.
Finland’s economy has been performing poorly this last decade. The big private companies have not been producing the right products. Their management have not been listening to what consumers want – there has been a lack of innovation in the old boys’ networks. You cannot blame the government for their weak performance. Nokia is a perfect example of market failure along with the some of the big paper and forestry companies. SME’s have been tied up with too much regulation; and that we can blame squarely on the government for not reducing archaic regulation.
But strange things are going on. Our Minister of Transport is trying to launch a major project whereby the road network will be incorporated and all cars, lorries and buses will be tracked and pay a fee based on how much and where there travel. It sounds just like George Orwell’s book “1984” where Big Brother watches and controls.
How do you think that any vehicle can pay for usage by tracking their journeys other than but storing data on their movements? Will the government track them with GPS systems or by using 4G mobile networks? How will they know who is to pay? How will they be able to follow foreign vehicles or people who refuse to pay. We have almost 6 million people here – will we all have to buy expensive tracking equipment implanted in our necks or stored in our cars?
It all sounds like those who profess small government are really after BIG GOVERNMENT.
We already have a simple system for paying as we go – we fill up our cars and lorries with it at gas stations! Digitization should be based on reasonable subjects and not on failed communist East European policies.
And then we will soon to be using driver-less cars with shared resources within 10 or 15 years. Why on earth do we want to start up a new expensive system when the whole platform will be changing with Google, Amazon, Facebook, Uber and the likes, running our transport system with CleanTech solutions in cities and in the countryside.