2007/06/15

Locking Up Americans is Their Business and Business is Good

Colin Powell added fuel to the ongoing debate over Guantanamo last week when he said he would close the facility right away if it were up to him.

But what about all the domestic mini-Guantanamos?

Ever hear of the Corrections Corporation of America? Me neither, until today.

Their representative no-showed a hearing in Sacramento yesterday where a state committee probed the practice of CCA moving California citizens incarcerated in their private prisons to other states.

8,000 prisoners will soon be moved involuntarily out of state to alleviate overcrowded prisons. 400 prisoners previously voluntarily decided to accept offers to move to less crowded prisons with more cable channels and the promises of "all night parties" in Tennessee and Arizona.

CCA, according to Wikipedia, is the fifth largest prison system in America behind the federal government and three states. Business is good. In fact their stock price just doubled.

Not only do these guys run prisons, they also got their foot in the door of the judicial system. CCA's executive vice president and general counsel and former aide to former Senate Majority leader Dr. Bill Frist, Gus Puryear IV landed a nomination today to be a federal judge for the Middle District of Tennessee.

Like many of the other major Republican privatizing schemes, it's not really working out. The company's been around since the beginning of the drug war which has to be some kind of incredible coincidence.

RELATED: "Children without a Country: Maryam Remains in Texas Jail" by Greg Moses, The Electronic Intifada.

3 Comments:

Under capitalism, there will always be people willing to break the law to get a piece of the dream (those who can't afford to have lawmakers change laws to benefit their schemes)so I can only imagine that business will be booming in the next couple of years.
The so called "Incarceration Industrial Complex" has been a potent lobby for tougher sentencing and the classification of increasingly more activities as criminal. Feeding their bulldog, it seems.
I watched Why We Fight again the other night with private prisons in mind and so many of the structural flaws overlap.

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