Most privatization schemes provide governments with a one-time cash fix, even if they leave the public worse off in the long term. The federal Conservatives’ privatization of the Canadian Wheat Board couldn’t even manage that.
While the federal Conservatives claimed they were selling the Canadian Wheat Board for $250 million, there was a small detail they glossed over. Instead of paying the $250 million to the Canadian public, the new owners were allowed to pay the money to the company they now owned.
Unless you’re part of the privatization industry, or a government spin doctor, that’s not selling the Canadian Wheat Board. It’s giving it away.
The Conservatives attempted to justify the deal by talking about what getting rid of the Canadian Wheat Board would do for farmers. To farmers would be more accurate. It’s estimated that scrapping the Wheat Board’s monopoly on grain sales cost farmers $6.5 billion in just 2 years.