THE CONSUMER PAYS
Four or five milk wagons break the stillness of the early morning hours rattling over the same streets. Four or five solicitors compete for business in the same block, and offer rival bribes to the apartment house superintendents. In this competition there is no benefit to the quality of milk; that is dependent on the honest enforcement of the law. There is not even an effort to reduce prices; they are fixed by open or tacit agreement by the two or three companies which dominate the situation. For this waste the consumer pays.
Landlords, speculative builders, realtors, banks and mortgage companies have tumbled over one another in a wild scramble for the profits of housing America. The result is that we, a nation of builders, live in flimsy houses and shacks and slums. For the wastes and extortion inherent in the great game of real estate against housing the consumer pays.
The electric power industry builds on top of the operating companies a bewildering and unstable pyramid of holding companies, each seeking to enhance the profits of the insiders. The whole process, according to Stephen Raushenbush, costs the American public an unnecessary million dollars a day. The consumer pays. He pays not only in a price for electricity in his home at least three times what his neighbor pays in Canada; often he pays in his inability to get power at all.
The oil, the coal, and other natural resources of a great continent have been wasted as no drunken sailor ever squandered his wages. The devastation of forests