From prisons to rail franchises and even London's Boris bikes, Serco is a giant global corporation that has hoovered up outsourced government contracts. Now the NHS is firmly in its sights. But it stands accused of mismanagement, lying and even charging for non-existent work
The firm that links these three stories together is Serco. Its range of activities, here and abroad, is truly mind-boggling, taking in no end of things that were once done by the state, but are now outsourced to private companies. Amazingly, its contracts with government are subject to what's known as "commercial confidentiality" and as a private firm it's not open to Freedom of Information requests, so looking into the details of what it does is fraught with difficulty.
Serco runs school inspections in parts of England, speed cameras all over the UK, and the National Nuclear Laboratory, based at the Sellafield site in Cumbria. It also holds the contracts for the management of the UK's ballistic missile early warning system on the Yorkshire moors, the running of the Manchester Aquatics Centre, and London's "Boris bikes".
As evidenced by the story of how it handled out-of-hours care in Cornwall, it is also an increasingly big player in a health service that is being privatised at speed, in the face of surprisingly little public opposition:
But even this is only a fraction of the story. Among their scores of roles across the planet, Serco is responsible for air traffic control in the United Arab Emirates, parking-meter services in Chicago, driving tests in Ontario, and an immigration detention centre on Christmas Island, run on behalf of those well-known friends of overseas visitors the Australian government.
In the US, the company has just been awarded a controversial $1.25bn contract by that country's Department of Health. All told, its operations suggest some real-life version of the fantastical mega-corporations that have long been invented by fiction writers; a more benign version of the Tyrell Corporation from Blade Runner, say, or one of those creations from James Bond movies whose name always seems to end with the word "industries".
Originally posted by Wonderer2012
I'll say it again, we are literally sleep walking into a dystopian nightmare.
Originally posted by MystikMushroom
Corporate logos are sigils.
The McDonalds M is a prime example.
Originally posted by olaru12
reply to post by xuenchen
How you can compare Marx who was a Socialist with Capitalism/corporate fascism run amok is beyond ludicrous.
I think my sig applies here
The once-liberal but now statist collectivist left in America apparently wants the coercive form of capitalism, renamed "democratic socialism" or some-such. They think they can get "social justice" by destroying the free choice part and keeping the coercive big government and big union parts.
This will work just fine for them only if they can maneuver themselves into position where they control the coercion.
But this will still result in exploitation of "the workers." It will just be "their" exploitation rather than "capitalism's" exploitation.
That's because no society can achieve any kind of justice based on the concept that some people have a "right" to coerce disfavored people for the benefit of favored people.
The two capitalisms: Free market vs. corporatism
Originally posted by xuenchen
google " karl marx corporatism " and read between the lines.
SOVIET foreign trade is a state monopoly. The Government through the Commissariat for Trade regulates export and import operations which are permitted only with special licenses issued by the Commissariat.
The Commissariat, however, does not actually carry on the foreign trade operations itself. Exports and imports are handled in the U.S.S.R. by state trading companies, cooperative societies, industrial organizations and finally concession and mixed (Soviet and foreign capital) enterprises.
Trade between the Soviet Union and the United States is handled in the main by four New York corporations, representing Soviet industrial and trading organizations. These firms are:
Amtorg Trading Corporation, 165 Broadway, New York, representatives in the United States of the principal trusts, syndicates, trading agencies and other economic organizations of the U.S.S.R., with the exception of the All-Russian Textile Syndicate and co-operative organizations. During 1927-28 the Amtorg made purchases in the United States of industrial equipment, agricultural machinery, non-ferrous metals, etc., for shipment to the Soviet Union, to the value of $33,100,000 and sold Soviet products worth over $12,000,000. The firm's purchases for the year showed an increase of 27 per cent.
All-Russian Textile Syndicate, 39 Broadway, New York, representatives of the Soviet AllUnion Textile Syndicate, purchase American cotton for shipment to the Soviet Union. Orders placed in the United States by this firm during 1927-28 amounted to $54,300,000, an increase of 23 per cent over the previous year.
Centrosoyus-America, 17 Battery Place, New York, representatives of the Union of Consumers' Cooperatives of the U.S.S.R. During 1927-28 the turnover of this firm was $,8oo,000, of which $3,300,000 represented sales of Soviet products.
Seiskosojus-America, 90 West St., New York, representatives of agricultural producers' co-operatives of the U.S.S.R. During 1927-28 the firm placed orders in the United States amounting to $5,400,000.
Several American firms deal directly with the Soviet Union by virtue of special agreements with the Soviet government. Among such firms are:
Standard Oil Co. of New York
Lena Goldfields Co.
Allied American Corporation
Russian-American Compressed Gas Co.
The motivating force behind managers as a group, their allegiance to the body corporate 'and the management psyche has been thoroughly investigated by W. H. Whyte in his "The Organization Man". Nor -are his findings necessarily restricted to managers on the North American continent. The same conclusions may be applied equally as well to those managers operating in a Socialist-style economy. What may not be so obvious, but which nonetheless may be taken for granted, is that the same style of managers-and -I mean this in the corporate sense-must be a fact of life in the Communist world.
One need only refer to the writings of Victor Zorza, for instance, to indicate a noted Soviet observer's acceptance that 'military-economic' managers are, in the USSR a fact of life. Commenting recently on the Supreme Soviet session, required to pass the latest five-year plan, he ascribed responsibility to the economic managers for delaying acceptance of the current five-year plan by the Supreme Soviet. Also, writing of a former party secretary and a leader of the military-economic manager faction of the party, he said, "Shelepin did not speak at the congress, but took advantage of the first major speech he made after it to emphasize the importance of major industry."
Originally posted by olaru12
The Right wing, conservative, control freaks wet dream. All the while parroting the "freedom, less government, back to the Constitution" mantra; then handing the control to the corporations.
The Democratic Republic has been replaced by the Corporate Oligarchy.
Dystopian Nightmare is an appropriate description. I'm so glad I don't have any kids to experience this BS.edit on 2-8-2013 by olaru12 because: (no reason given)