The Humble Libertarian

Building a small army to take over the world and... leave everybody alone.


Friday, May 4, 2012

Free market capitalism: Fortune 500 companies and privatized prisons have brought back ‘convict leasing’

Why does capitalism have a bad name, besides the fact that capitalism doesn't really exist anywhere except in the underground economy? The prison industrial complex lobbies federal and state legislatures to criminalize more and more routine human activities. More folks go to prison and Fortune 500 companies contract with private prisons for slave labor.
The Corrections Corporation of America and G4S (formerly Wackenhut), two prison privatizers, sell inmate labor at subminimum wages to Fortune 500 corporations like Chevron, Bank of America, AT&T and IBM. These companies can, in most states, lease factories in prisons or prisoners to work on the outside. All told, nearly a million prisoners are now making office furniture, working in call centers, fabricating body armor, taking hotel reservations, working in slaughterhouses or manufacturing textiles, shoes and clothing, while getting paid somewhere between 93 cents and $4.73 per day. First, it’s interesting that it’s Fortune 500 companies leasing this prison labor at ‘subprime wages’ because it was recently reported (I posted about it below) that in 2011, Fortune 500 CEOs made 380 times more than the average worker. 380 times more!
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Judy Morris,
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