Going far beyond the standard pro-business Republican talking points of running a government like a business, Governor Pete Ricketts announced Tuesday that he plans to turn Nebraska’s government into a literal business.
“It’s a bold move, but I am confident our state’s government will be better able to create wealth for our board members and governor- excuse me, will better serve our citizens- under a for-profit model,” Ricketts said in a televised press conference. “We hope to build on successful models such as Kaplan University, ITT Technical Institute and Blackwater Security Services by privatizing our entire state government.”
Ricketts plans to explore various ways to increase the state’s revenue levels in order to raise profits, including selling advertising space on the upper floors of the Nebraska State Capitol, replacing toll-free government phone numbers with $1.00 per minute 1-900-numbers and opening an RV dealership on the lawn of the Governor’s Mansion.
“In my mind, the upside of privatizing Nebraska is that Governor Ricketts will likely be able to perform his job’s duties in a somewhat competent manner,” said University of Nebraska-Lincoln political science professor Jane McDonnell. “We elected a governor who lacked a single second of experience in holding elected office, so I expect he will have a good deal of success as CEO of Nebraska, a position he has actually held.”
Ricketts plans to offer price-based upgrades to many common government services, including a $400 yearly State Patrol package that ensures all traffic stops will only result in warnings and a literal get-out-of-jail-free card retailing for $100,000.
Under the privatized state government, citizens of Nebraska will now be classified as employees, with state officials encouraging citizens to maximize the amount of profit they can generate for the state. Though Ricketts expects the corporate transition will not result in layoffs at this time, experts are suggesting underperforming citizens should begin preparing for termination and the possibility of relocating to competitors such as South Dakota and Kansas.