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The Prison Industrial Complex

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posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 08:54 AM

Originally posted by LightSpeedDriver
reply to post by LittleBlackEagle

I can't remember what I watched but either a docu or a youtube clip and "they" said it costs $30,000 a year to keep someone incarcerated. Obviously they like to run things as efficiently as possible so they have these facilities where thousands can be secured and the corporation that owns those prisons racks up the profits.

I think that is one of the major problem causers. I daresay there are other countries that nave privatised their prison system too but I can't name one off the top of my head.

That stat is fairly accurate. It comes from a book entitled "Race to Incarcerate". I forget the author's name, but it was written around 2000 or so. It's pretty standard fair in pre-law undergrad courses. Should be easy to find.

....the real bitch of it that it only costs about $15,000/yr to send someone to college.

posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 09:16 AM
reply to post by Leftist

our day to day lives are a prison for most...... the thing is that you enslave yourself with debt. Prisons are just a more extreme form. People with debt make their cell prison comfortable with their debt.

it is a matter of perspective really.

yes prisons are a problem. "drug" are a huge farce used to fill the prisons with more workers and to make prisons a booming business

posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 09:19 AM
reply to post by Leftist

I did a thread on this very subject here:

Many people are in prison for drugs and when you have a country that classifies a certain drug (weed, green) we cannot name here on ATS in the same category as heroine with stiff fines and prison time - that is insane.

Big Pharma rules so do the large companies that make our many laws and while the common man MUST follow the millions of laws on the books, the large companies and banks seem above the law.

Can you say Gulag or slave labor?????

I have first hand as to what a big business the current prison system has become because I use to work for a company that serviced the insurance needs of some of the large corporations that service the prison complex.

Drugs - should be treated (and insured) by rehab, it's not a crime, it's self-medication to numb yourself for a system that everyone knows is being run by insane psychopaths.

Child custody, father support - Well on that one, My ex daughter in law called my son's employer and got him fired, so he could not pay child support, hoping he would go to jail / prison - but we, my husband having money, lent him child support until he could get another job. It has cost us $28,000 in lawyer expenses to see our grand daughter as well as $1,200 to get the court to make the little princess not contact my son's place of business or his fiance' (I could go on how corrupt and unjust our court system is concerning men).

Big business - yes.

Free or cheap labor - yes.

And with more and more laws being put on the books and more and more "security"/ "scrutiny"

Again, I've already addressed these issues here:

posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 09:23 AM
These people are in prison because they ignored the rules put in place by you and your peers..... they have no social responsibility.... this is an easy way of teaching them that....

We cannot allow prisoners to have a free ride inside... we cannot allow them to sit around playing playstations all day from fear of contravening their "human rights".... they forefieted their human rights when they committed the crime they committed to get put there in the first place.....given the amount of money we law abiding tax payers put into the system, we need to see some sort of productivity and rehabilitation... these schemes teach these people some form of social responsbility, if nothing else... and also the fact that sometimes in life you have to do things you don't want to!

I get fed up with the human rights act being used to protect these people.... if you don't care about other peoples human rights why should you be afforded any yourself....... rights and respect need to be mutual.

As far as how much they are payed and how they are treated..... guess what, if you don't like it, don't break the flippin law!! I am sure you would be the first on your soapbox if they were being paid as much, or even more than the normal Joe on the street..... the pay is relavent to their status in society... after all, I, and i propose much of society, would not be too happy if prisoners were eventually coming out of prison with healthy savings gleaned from their time inside.... that's just not appropriate... remember it is your tax money that will be paying them.... All they need is some money for tobacco and snacks while they are inside..... and guess what... if they don't like it, don't get arrested!!

I beleive your outrage is misplaced... how about we tackle the reason these people are in there in the first place? They need no protection from you my friend... do you think they would help you if you were in a dire situation....


edit on 26-4-2012 by PerfectAnomoly because: Spelling...

posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 09:26 AM
That's allot of people who are upset with "the way of things".

Yet some will say they approve of this. It is enough to make you wonder.....

done wondering. They are asses. This is just wrong. I bet more of them are leaving more criminal and less social than before.

That's the solution....suuuure.

edit on 26-4-2012 by BIHOTZ because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 09:38 AM
reply to post by PerfectAnomoly

I get fed up with the human rights act being used to protect these people.... if you don't care about other peoples human rights why should you be afforded any yourself....... rights and respect need to be mutual.

So when someone goes to prison for drug possession, what rights of yours were disrespected? From your account, it would seem like the majority of people in prisons are violent and go around destroying property.

But that's so far from the truth its laughable.

90% of the "crimes" that land people in prison were never meant to be "crimes" in the first place, especially in our Union.

"Prohibition will work great injury to the cause of temperance. It is a species of intemperance within itself, for it goes beyond the bounds of reason in that it attempts to control a man's appetite by legislation, and makes a crime out of things that are not crimes. A Prohibition law strikes a blow at the very principles upon which our government was founded."

-Abraham Lincoln

posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 10:00 AM
reply to post by Juggernog

The War on Drugs was started by Nixon.

It was Nancy Reagan who told us to, "Just Say No!"

posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 10:01 AM
In 1997 just after I turned 18 I was incarcerated after being busted with possession of '___', I was a deluded hippie kid. My father was a hippie and he raised me with hippie values, which I now see as terribly naive of him. Anyway when I entered the courtroom for my arraignment I was told that I was facing 48 years!, that I should take a plea bargain, and maybe the judge would show mercy on me. Being the youngster I was and not knowing anything about the system I agreed to the plea bargain and was sentenced to 9 years! 9 years for trying to be a peaceful little hippie, and trying to expand my mind and such LOL!! Anyway I was sent to a place called Buena Vista Prison in Colorado and on my way there while sitting on the bus a man next to me said, "get ready boys, this is gladiator school". I asked him what he meant and he told me that this is where they sent all the youngsters to earn there stripes. He told me that he was bound for Canyon City and was not getting off here, but told me, "good luck, your gonna need it"!
Anyway to make a long, long, LONG story short I was incarcerated for a total of 7 years, while in prison I was witness to the most extreme horrors that one can witness no where else except during war. I was witness to bloody, mutilations and murder, gang rapes, suicides (probably the most disturbing), and general callousness of both the guards and prisoners. I spent the 7 years of my incarceration reading about history, philosophy, economics, anthropology, physics, metaphysics etc. but I also got a PHD from the school of hard knocks. When I went in I was a 140 lb skinny, tall, white kid, when I came out I was a 250 lb tattooed and scarred monster. Being that I am white I learned right away the true nature of race relations.
My hippie upbringing and ideology went right out the barred windows when I saw what blacks and mestizos were actually like, as my experience with other races was limited to a few encounters in southern California when I was a child. And still in my hippie mind I rationalized the beatings I took as a child at the hand of mestizos and blacks (because I was a White kid) as isolated incidents (they couldn't all be bad...right). What I found is that black and mestizo individuals may seem quite friendly when they are not around a large group of their own kind, but when they get together they get louder, and louder, and LOUDER, all trying to out talk each other in a alpha male exercise...and they get violent.
In their ape-like mind this need to express violence manifests as seeking the weakest, or smallest target. And at the age of 18 I was the weakest target. Though I was never raped (thank God), I took many beatings before I was large enough to be scary. Blessed with good genetics it only took about a year of hitting the weight pile, before I became a beast. The last time I was attacked by someone (he was Mexican and a sex offender) The fight ended in him being thrown down three flights of stairs into a bloody heap. His "posse" saw the whole fight and I experienced no retaliation after this act, not out of respect for standing up for myself, but because at their core they were cowards, this is why they generally attack in groups.
I was released from prison in '05 and I count it as one of the most important experiences of my life, since then I have become a successful business man, and have begun to raise a family. Most importantly though I see things for what they really are, and have no more illusions. Ideology serves no purpose if it is not based on reality. If you want to change the world look at it for what it really is, and not what you want it to be...and I'll leave you with that.

posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 10:02 AM
reply to post by Leftist

Imagine the number of innocent people incarcerated.

When satan rebelled God cast him down with his followers on this planet. They sure seem to have found their place.

posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 10:06 AM
Prison is overused and does not rehabilitate properly.

75% of prisoners should be remanded to community service, house arrest, and GPS monitoring. All of them should be given state appointed work if unable to find work on their own, paid at a minimum wage without benefits (roadside cleanup, janitorial, landscaping, low level office work, physical labors, farming, etc). They should also be required to pay a monthly fee for the GPS monitoring and/or probation services taken directly from their paycheck. In addition to this, they should be required to attend counseling or rehabilitation for whatever crimes they may have committed, also at a fee. Out of this, if they are unable or unwilling to comply they are then sent to the proper facility or prison.

The remaining 25% is composed of mainly the mentally ill, and should be remanded to "prison" but it be more of a therapeutic hospital/asylum so they can not only possibly get better, but be no harm to themselves or others.

This would cost the state much less than now, and may actually provide additional funding for the state with the surplus dollars going towards education programs to prevent future offenders and catch them young in order to prevent problems later in life.

In addition to this, if one were to actually removal idiotic laws that criminalize everyone, and legalize a majority of substances and victimless adult activities, it would minimize offenders even more so. I also believe in the sealing of all criminal records, for if someone is safe enough to be released, then they have paid their debt to society and should not be subject to ex post facto punishment via discrimination.

THIS would be a solution that could work. But it does not allow for excessive profit and life-destroying vengeance, due to this is not acceptable. And in order to stop the cycle of ignorance and violence early intervention would be key.
edit on 26-4-2012 by DJM8507 because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 10:11 AM
here's an article i thought fit well in this thread.

The Return of Debtors’ Prisons: Jailed for $280

How did breast cancer survivor Lisa Lindsay end up behind bars? She didn’t pay a medical bill — one the Herrin, Ill., teaching assistant was told she didn’t owe. “She got a $280 medical bill in error and was told she didn’t have to pay it,” The Associated Press reports. “But the bill was turned over to a collection agency, and eventually state troopers showed up at her home and took her to jail in handcuffs.”

Although the U.S. abolished debtors’ prisons in the 1830s, more than a third of U.S. states allow the police to haul people in who don’t pay all manner of debts, from bills for health care services to credit card and auto loans. In parts of Illinois, debt collectors commonly use publicly funded courts, sheriff’s deputies, and country .

collection agency's are by far, the vile pit of life on this earth.

edit on 26-4-2012 by LittleBlackEagle because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 10:35 AM

Originally posted by CALGARIAN
I wonder is it the laws in the U.S, such as minor pot possession, or is all the crazy media, reality TV and violence on TV that is making people more susceptible to crime?

With every law and federal regulation on the books, every US citizen could be arrested. You've broken laws you're not even aware of. From the EPA and IRS alone, trust me: you've violated something.

posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 10:38 AM
Altho I am sure there are those who truly earned a cell and should be in prison, the amount of people who have committed victim-less crimes and the amount of time they are serving, at least in the U.S., is quite staggering when compared to crimes with actual victims.

Just like almost everything else in the United States if there is a way to make a buck of off something it will be done regardless of whether its morally right or makes sense, we just say "It's just business" or "It's the law" to feel justified in things we know in our hearts is wrong, kinda sad really ...

posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 10:42 AM
The prison industry is one industry that should be government run, and run non for profit, all of our freedoms depend on it.

posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 11:02 AM
I can now see the relation between these stats and the overwhelming Hollywood propaganda in favor of cops, and Law & Order. Who hasn't see a damn movie/TV series featuring one or two cops as the hero, while all the villains were all kinds of lawless people. I regret having liked things like "Miami Vice" and "Lethal Weapon" when I was a stupid kid. Now turns out that our "heroes" the cops are actually a bunch of murderous, abusive cowards who can't do any good thing in life on their own.

Seems like the State propaganda has paid very well for the prison industry! All this, in times where America still used to pretend carrying the torch of the "free world"... against evil communism and its prisons and police everywhere. So much for freedom...

Land of the free... now has about 25% of world's prison population locked in its concrete cells.
edit on 26/4/12 by Echtelion because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 11:02 AM
The spike of the incarceration rate around 1970 perfectly coincides with when Nixon launched the war on drugs in 1972. There are over 800,000 people arrested every year just for having a plant the gub'mint doesn't want you to have. I can't believe there are still people out there who think it is a good idea to lock people in cages for this nonsense. But hey, it's ok to drink your drug and that can be advertised like it's the coolest thing ever. Welcome to the land of hypocrisy.

posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 11:09 AM

Originally posted by LDragonFire
The prison industry is one industry that should be government run, and run non for profit, all of our freedoms depend on it.

Should be... Must be... these are vain verbs when dealing with such a big system of organized exploitation and repression.

Plus, everything that's privatized is, because it was under State control before. Same as with any other kind of privatization. This is exactly the role that socialism plays into capitalism... to push it further by the use of State authority.

Problem is rather: Why does a free country needs prisons, especially when cops and bureaucrats are so rarely found to end up there? It doesn't make sense. As long as I don't see cops having a full sentence for the murders they commit, putting people in cells is a CRIME! No one has the legitimacy to deprive others from their basic freedoms.

ABOLISH PRISONS, that's all!
edit on 26/4/12 by Echtelion because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 11:13 AM
populations of prisons will only increase...why?...follow the money...who's making it, and who's losing it. the next big influx...home-grown faux-terrorists.......protesters, cybercrime, laws put in place for political crimes.

posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 11:26 AM
I figure it's only right that I add my 2 cents to this conversation. I work for a state run minimum security institution. We house drug offenses, DUIs, driving on revoked, gun charges, robberies, assaults, or pretty much "most" non violent crimes. So the majority of the time I'm working with people that aren't too far off from who I am, maybe just one or two bad ideas away. It's a 5 year and under prison so either you come in with 5 years or you've worked your way down considering it's not too violent of a crime and you've been an upstanding inmate. Now the average day of an inmate. We either offer school, GED, some vocational, dietary, minor jobs here and there or we have our industries which is laundry. Our laundry does laundry service for local hospitals other neary-by prisons and some nursing homes. The fee for doing so covers the expenses for us to run laundry, maybe cover some other cost of the prison, and we pay the inmates. They can earn up to $300 a month. I'll elaborate more on this in a minute.

Now if you're an inmate and you do none of these activities here's what you do. Nothing. Absolutely nothing. You can choose to be woken up for breakfast or you can sleep till whenever you want to get up. Than once you wake up and it's past count times you can either go outside or to the gym and do some recreation or you can sit in the unit all day and either watch TV or hang with your boys.So lets say you're doing a 5 year bit so for 5 years you do absolutely nothing and than one day you get out. Now you have to re-enter society, start working and actually have responsibilities. But it's going to take some getting used to because for 5 years you've done nothing. It takes 21 days to develop a habit but I'm not sure how long it takes to overcome 5 years of nothingness.

As for some form of rehabilitation we offer NA, AA, chapel( cause as soon as you go to prison you find god), or school.That's it. All the drug/alcohol rehab is optional. Going to school you will receive "Good Time" and what that means is that for however much school you complete you get so many days "good time" and that means it's days off you sentence.

Now as most of you all know, prisons are nothing but a money pit. States pump billions of dollars into prisons and receive nothing from them except the wages employees make go back into the economy which still doesn't make up for the deficit. But there has to be some sort of punishment system in place. I watch guys who are in there for driving on a revoked license. They're doing upwards of a year and over. "That's insane. People are in prison for driving offenses?" you say? Yes, yes they are but here's the kicker. Nobody goes to prison for one driving on revoked or 1 DUI. People go to prison for multiple offenses. You don't actually do time in my state until at least your 3rd DUI. My opinion is you should do time for your first DUI because that's only the 3rd time you were caught. Who knows how many times you were drunk driving and never got caught and could've easily have killed a family in a car. But the revokes? Well I look at it as you didn't care the first time you were caught. You didn't care the next 5 times you were caught so you care nothing about the law so there has to be some sort of punishment. ( Plus in order to get a revoked license what did you do?) So all of these "non-violent" crimes have a little more to their story than just getting caught going to prison.

The drug offenses are a different story. While most of the people I see aren't just recreational pot smokers or people who eat mushrooms. They're people who were dealing to feed their habit. Usually they weren't dealing to the most savory characters in the world either. They are mostly the little gangbangers on the street who will sell you drugs one minute and rob and shoot you the next. Granted I will get the white kid who just got caught up in the wrong way. But here's the problem, the prisons will continue to be jam packed with drug offenses no matter what me or you think. I personally believe pot should be legal but kept the rest of the harder drugs illegal. There is no way to be a recreational crack or heroin user. The law is the law is the law is the law. And there's a huge movement going on right now in this country that is trying to open up the public's eyes to the cause of marijuana. So become more active in the positives in the drug just not the pot smoker hippie ways.

Finally back to the prison industries topic. I don't really agree with a prison using sweatshop labor for the general public. BUT if prisons built industries to sell to other prisons in the state and maybe most of the day to day costs of some things were made from inmates making it self sustaining I think we would see the budget downfall in the prison system collapse a little. Plus it wouldn't take jobs away from people. Final note is that the industries are rehabilitation. They teach these guys a good days work and to be productive.

posted on Apr, 26 2012 @ 11:48 AM

Originally posted by LightSpeedDriver
reply to post by LittleBlackEagle

I bet the "War on Drugs" has at least something to do with it. It's a bit like Prohibition, it didn't help much but caused much unnecessary suffering.

The "War on Drugs" is probably more of a cover story/excuse for the filling up of corporate, profit-generating prisons. The "profit" of course, coming from taxpayer money. They are like WalMarts - one gets filled up, they have to build another, bigger one. Money money money. They also claim to create "jobs" also, which is BS, because any job funded by taxpayers is actually a net negative job to the economy.

edit on 26-4-2012 by AwakeinNM because: (no reason given)

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