For-Profit Prison Corporations Promise Investors “A Growing Offender Population”

for-profit prisonThinkProgress on the rosy outlook from Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) and GEO Group, the nation’s first- and second-largest operators of for-profit prisons:

During a conference call touting its success, representatives at GEO Group boasted that the company continues to have “solid occupancy rates in mid to high 90s” and that they are optimistic “regarding the outlook for the industry,” in part due to a “growing offender population.” GEO Senior Vice President John Hurley assured investors during the call:

We have a longstanding partnership with the Federal Bureau of Prisons, the United States Marshal Service and US Immigration and Customs Enforcement or ICE. … We continue to see meaningful opportunities for us to partner with all three of these federal agencies. The federal bureau of prisons continues to face capacity constraints coupled with a growing offender population.

During its investor call in February, CCA CEO Damon Hininger assured investors a strong “continued demand for beds.”

30 Comments on "For-Profit Prison Corporations Promise Investors “A Growing Offender Population”"

  1. Anarchy Pony | May 21, 2013 at 12:06 pm |

    Hmm, I’m beginning to suspect that attaching profit to maintaining a growing prison population might not be an effective tool to curb crime. Call me paranoid.

    • No, it is a horrible way to prevent “crime.” But it is fucking great for locking up lots of poor, non-white bodies.
      Also, the fact that the profit motive creates an incentive for keeping these prisons as full as possible seems more than a bit problematic.

      • Anarchy Pony | May 21, 2013 at 12:57 pm |

        Prison is how America handles its unwanted these days, as genocide is no longer in vogue. And if you can profit from it, well by God you’ve got yourself something gold.

        • I know, it’s really fucked up. The surplus population in the US is now prison fodder as well as cannon fodder. Lots of money to made off of both.

          • Liam_McGonagle | May 21, 2013 at 5:47 pm |

            “At this festive season of the year, Mr. Scrooge,” said the gentleman, taking
            up a pen, “it is more than usually desirable that we should make some slight
            provision for the Poor and Destitute, who suffer greatly at the present time.
            Many thousands are in want of common necessaries; hundreds of thousands are in
            want of common comforts, sir.”

            “Are there no prisons?” asked Scrooge.

            “Plenty of prisons,” said the gentleman, laying down the pen again.

            “And the Union workhouses?” demanded Scrooge. “Are they still in

            “They are. Still,” returned the gentleman, “I wish I could say they were

            “The Treadmill and the Poor Law are in full vigour, then?” said Scrooge.

            “Both very busy, sir.”

          • Yep, it’s been getting more and more DICKinsian every year:(

          • InfvoCuernos | May 21, 2013 at 10:08 pm |

            Too bad we stopped building pyramids. That seemed like a pretty good way to take care of a lot of that surplus.

          • they are making office furniture now, that the government buys. huge prison industries sector is also growing, competing with 3rd world wages.
            Check out

    • RevEggplant | May 21, 2013 at 3:32 pm |

      1984 anyone? This is just what our founders wished to prevent. We are completely screwed and the conspiracy is in control.

      • who gives a shit about the founders?
        they were far from being prophets or saints, far from being wise, unless being wise means knowing how to make a buck and get a fuck, by any means necessary, and seeming like a nice guy while doing so.

        • Anarchy Pony | May 22, 2013 at 12:11 am |

          Word up yo. Who gives a shit what a bunch of slave owning landed gentry 240 years ago intended for us?

        • Sarcasm? I ask because I couldn’t be certain which side of your argument you were trying to demonstrate.

          • no, I didn’t intend to be sarcastic. I don’t believe it matters what the founders of the American Republic wished for, as if they’re intentions were totally pure or benign. I find it strange that they’re words are taken as divine or prophetic , even if its secular prophecy.

          • Well, the founders did a little more than wish for things. Many tried to break away from the UK in the past. Few have succeeded. They also wrote out the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States, which serves as the bedrock for all law in this country. Even the Emancipation Proclamation, tardy though it may have been.

            Sorry, you’re getting my dad’s speech, he was a State Trooper and a Constitutionalist, as he swore to be.

            If you remove the foundation of a house – yeah it’s a messy house – it will fall. Same as a house divided. Without the Constitution there would be no law at all. Granted the Constitution is being ignored these days to an alarming degree. However if we had not been dumbed down by the American Public Education System to the point that we do not know our history we would all be aware that those in power have always tried their best to ignore or circumvent the Constitution throughout our history. Having this knowledge tends to indicate we have been living somewhat of a lie, but removes some of the surprise that it is still going on, and decreases our feeling of being the “first martyrs” due to unfair conditions. We have been trained to react with knee jerk regularity to our first impressions, not to take the time to consider the whole picture.

            We would also know that a comparison in the reading levels and the reading frequency between today and the days of our Founders would show your theory about their wisdom to be flawed at best.

            I am not saying all of them were saints or belong on pedestals. There are even a couple that I take great issue with. For instance it was the direction that Hamilton wanted to go in that has gotten us to this sorry economical situation we are in, but it is also the greed of our fellow man today. Granted we did not go in that direction when he wanted us to, and it took the greedy ones a while to get us there, – thanks to Jefferson and Jackson – but it was only the wisdom of the day that held it at bay during the beginning of our Country. And it was just after that wisdom began to falter – the beginning of the public education system here – that they were finally able to slip these economic changes in which would eventually lead us to this state.

            So I lay no blame with you for the viewpoint that you have. It is the one you are supposed to have. But it is incorrect.

          • I bind my self not to any covenant. a piece of paper hasn’t given me any right. nor do I accept any protection from a gang or mafia or devil. although, I realize the power they wield in this world and am no idiot to blatantly flaunt my free spirit. you, my friend, have been charmed by their glittering words. you shall know them by their fruits, not the “high-minded” ideals they profess. yes, perhaps they wanted freedom from the british. who didn’t? they wanted the freedom for themselves and their own. do you know the history of mexico, Guatemala and other latin American countries. they, too, broke free from the crown and gave freedom to their own. what happened to the native inhabitants and their rights, again?

    • Simon Valentine | May 21, 2013 at 4:14 pm |

      not intended to prevent crime unless we go back to the Latin
      pre- + -vent- + … + … + … …
      in one “prevent”, one cannot prevent crime any more or less than one can admit to committing crime

      as “vent” from the Latin “wind”, “before wind”, “occurring or happening prior to wind”

      just another shitty d weather man job is all
      nothing to see there

  2. 100PercentChanceOfAFauxPas | May 21, 2013 at 12:46 pm |

    This one area in which I believe the federal government should over see. For profits are going to be rife with abuse against these prisoners. Many of which are low profile type offenders that really shouldn’t be there.

  3. Simon Valentine | May 21, 2013 at 3:57 pm |

    just when i thought it couldn’t get any more creative
    for-profit prison system
    Despotism by Incarceration? (at least its a physical sort of honesty, like dry heat?)
    oh wait.
    i lied.
    these are prison camps.
    oh wait.
    i lied.
    these are propaganda logic.
    oh wait.
    i lied.
    wtf? patterns and shit? where’s the general?

  4. smooth_operator | May 21, 2013 at 4:54 pm |

    God, America. You’re so fucked.

    • there was hardly a time we weren’t. nothing new under the sun. the oppressed have been oppressed since, well, the beginning of time.
      does that make it right? of course not. and I would encourage everyone to do what they could to help establish mercy and justice upon the land.

  5. BuzzCoastin | May 21, 2013 at 6:49 pm |

    makes you wish there was a Hell for people like that
    fortunately for readers of the White race
    you have nothing to fear
    unless you’re poor white trash or a malcontent pot smoking hippie
    Prison INC saves it’s best seats for Blacks & dark skinned minorities

    • its a class war, not a race war.

      • BuzzCoastin | May 22, 2013 at 7:24 am |

        it’s a class war for sure
        the racial make-up of Homeland prisoners
        suggests that it’s also racial
        a modern recapitulation of the old slave system

  6. It is not the profit motive at the prison level that will increase the prison population (educate yourself on some basic economics 101). The demand is artificially created by government (a “public” entity). A prison personnel cannot place anyone there on their own; government Courts do by means of codified legislation (dictatorship’s whims). We are supposed to and used to have common law (what people thought was the law and therefore adhered by); but no lawyer nowadays understand or wants common law to be in place (now THAT is because of profit motive) because the Jury can and has the legal right to nullify unjust laws, and that alone would destroy the whole judicial-prison business. As long as government criminalizes all kinds of normal people’s behaviors or habits (walking on the wrong side of the street, defending yourself when a police officer is attacking you —to arrest you for what THEY believe is a crime,— or anything else that most people don’t know is against the “law”), lawyers and judges will continue to be “necessary” to prosecute the new “criminals”. No other private business in the world has ever been able to monopolize a business like the government Courts can and then get their operating funds out of the public at gun point (IRS anyone?). Trying to blame the private corporations for trying to make a profit is ridiculous. At least in order to do that, companies need to spend their money smartly so there is an actual profit left after all the expenses are accounted for (something government bureaucrats are incapable of). Government can simply “borrow” more money from Mr. Federal Reserve (who can simply create it from thin air as necessary), directly stealing the value of all of our money we currently hold (this is called inflation).

    To serve and protect…. the idiots… (or the slaves for that matter)…

    • Witchwindy | May 22, 2013 at 1:45 pm |

      Good points but you left out the fact that those who own or work for these for-profit prisons lobby heavily against relegalizing “illicit” drugs, and for more stringent sentencing for the most minor victimless “crimes”, thereby insuring a growing prison population.

  7. Noah_Nine | May 22, 2013 at 9:38 pm |

    what happens if you just flat out refuse to “work” in one of these places? do they bust out a cattle prod? surely using a bullwhip to “encourage productivity” is against the law

  8. Please SIGN (and SHARE) my petition on trying to bring attention to the dangerous private prisons operating here in Mississippi

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