According to the Global Library Statistics the United States consists of 3793 academic libraries with more than 7 million users. They are visiting their university library like other people the postal service. That means, the users love the library-industrial complex, profit from it and stay there quite often. Most (perhaps all) of the libraries are organized as a non-profit charity organization, that means, the taxpayer is paying the loan of the librarians, the energy costs, the rental fee and the acquisition of new handbooks, journals and CD-Roms, while the students who are reading the information are paying nothing.
Most of the students who are visiting a university library are rich. But they are paying no fee if they are sitting with their notebook in the library and get access to the WLAN connection for browsing in the online-repository. They don't pay a single cent, if they are reading a printed book or if they borrow something. On the other hand, all the libraries are producing large amount of costs. The rooms are provided for masses, the books have to be bought, and the academic journals are subscribed for a special fee. How can it be, that such a large and important business isn't organized as a private company, but is seen as a governmental obligation? Wouldn't it be more efficient, if a capitalistic approach for book lending and local internet-access in the academic library would be used?