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Immigrants For Sale: $5 Billion a Year

You always knew there were billions being made in the for-profit prison system, but it’s really sobering to watch the latest Brave New Films video on the immigrant detention racket.

Micah Uetricht at Campus Progress:

“You just sell it like you were selling cars or real estate or hamburgers,” said CCA founder Thomas Beasley, former chairman of the Tennessee Republican Party whose company has helped lead the charge for privatized prisons over the last few decades.

BNF lists 3 facts you need to know and share with friends:

  • The victims: Private prisons don’t care about who they lock up. At a rate of $200 per immigrant a night at their prisons, this is a money making scheme that destroys families and lives.
  • The players: CCA (Corrections Corporation of America), The Geo Group and Management and Training corporations—combined these private prisons currently profit more than $5 billion a year.
  • The money: These private prisons have spent over $20 million lobbying state legislators to make sure they get state anti-immigrant laws approved and ensure access to more immigrant inmates.

I wanted to slap my forehead and shout “Doh!” when I read that ALEC (the American Legislative Exchange Council), which basically pushes corporate-friendly bills through state legislatures, had been funded by the prison industrial complex in their drive to pass Arizona’s SB 1070.

Forget the confederate flag.  I should’ve known: those bastards don’t get off their asses until someone waves a dollar sign.

Hats off to Robert Greenwald and the BNF gang.  Collecting the data in one place and stringing it together in a clear and powerful fashion can really bring it home to people just how corrupt and evil this is.

Jon Walker has more about the disastrous consequences of privatizing the prison system in the United States.


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Jane Hamsher

Jane Hamsher

Jane is the founder of Her work has also appeared on the Huffington Post, Alternet and The American Prospect. She’s the author of the best selling book Killer Instinct and has produced such films Natural Born Killers and Permanent Midnight. She lives in Washington DC.
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