Private power companies don't work because they don't add value. Power is something _everyone_ wants. When everyone wants something it makes sense for it to be run as a public utility. Adding a private element just lets someone skim 10-20% off the top is all while they cut down on safety. Anyone who thinks private companies are inherently more efficient needs to go watch Office Space again and then go check out the (rather amazing) American Postal System or look at a well funded DMV (as opposed to a DMV run for the purposes of triggering knee jerk reactions from anti-gov't types).
Sure, you have to keep an eye on what the gov't does, but we've already established we have to do the same with business (see the aforementioned anti-trust laws). That's the trouble with socialism. Free Market Capitalism claims to have principles and easy answers. That they're the wrong answers isn't really the issue. Socialists basically say: Hey, the world is _fsckin'_ complex and it takes real hard work to make things run smoothly, and then a Socialist will start blathering on about all the things you need to do to make a system work.
The way I see Free Market Capitalism is this: When have you ever had a difficult problem that got better by leaving it the fsck alone?
To get rid of this crap Americans would have to give up on every other issue they think matters and vote on money and only money. I just don't see that happening. If we could switch to a parliamentary system, but that pretty much means scraping our Constitution; and to hear Americans talk about that damnable piece of scrap paper you'd think it was their bible. To be fair I remember as a kid having it droned into me that it was a sacred document. Every teacher I've ever had sung it's praise. When I was older I found out why we have a Senate (hint: it our version of the House of Lords) and why we had so much States rights. It wasn't for Freedom's sake, that's for sure...
And after 30 years of declining wages who the hell can save anything? 60% of Americans are paycheck to paycheck. And before you trot out that nonsense about buying iPhones every 2 years my generation doesn't smoke. That more than makes up for the cost of a phone every few years. So shove off.
Maybe companies _shouldn't_ be able to drop me anytime. You know, there's a downside to my desperation for you too. That's what unemployment is for. It's not to protect me if I'm unemployed. It's to protect _you_ from competing with me when I'm desperate and I'll take _anything_. See, when that happens they'll fire you with your benefits and your high salary and hire me for minimum wage. The unemployed are coming for you. Welcome to the race to the bottom. It's a long way down.