It isn't enough that the corporations that profit most from wars pay off politicians to get what they want. They resort to slave labor as well. Do you know that prison inmates in the U.S. do work for these war corporations? Yep, those companies that get the multi-billion-dollar "contracts" for producing military equipmnt do some of it by having people in our prisons do their labor.
In the case of a corporation like Halliburton, they didn't even need a contract, they got no-bid billions from the actions by the Vice President of the United States, Dick Cheney. Imagine here in the USA, incarcerated slaves. This is what the right means when it talks about free enterprise. Slave capitalism. What an idea!
"Private prison lobbies, legislative laws, the judiciary, law enforcement, and racism work together to create a system that supplies nearly free labor for the profit of private corporations. And those profiting from this system include all the major weapons manufacturers. How did things get to this point?
"To answer that question, it's important to look at the development of the prison system from its inception following the American Civil War. In reaction to the gains made by freed slaves during Reconstruction, a new system of de facto slavery was created through the quick passage of Southern state and local laws (black codes), ensnaring the new freedmen into penal labor. This was the beginning, here in America, of the contracting out of mass prison labor to individuals or corporations by state and local governments. Subsequently, in 1936 the federal government passed a law allowing for products to be made in federal prisons by a federal entity now called UNICOR. With the establishment of UNICOR, the practice of using prison labor expanded to encompass federal and state prisons throughout the nation." -from the periodical WORLDWIDE WAMM, Nov. 2011, page l: "Working on the Chain Gang: Prison Labor in 21st Century America" ..............more from this article follows.........
"African Americans and Latino/Hispanic Americans have been the primary targets of profit-driven laws. By the year 2000, three-fourths of all prisoners were either black or Hispanic."
And the work being done by U.S. prisoners includes war-profit corporations such as Patriot Missile producers, Raytheon, Lockheed Martin, and McDonnell Douglas/Boeing, General Dynamics, Bell/Textron's Cobra helicopter, BAE Systems for the Bradley Fighting Vehicle's laser rangefinder, and on endlessly. "With these cost-cutting production methods, leading U.S. weapon contractors are making huge profits with prison labor. [from same article above]. See also: "Profits of War" from Nation Books, 2010, and also an article, "Why are Prisoners Being Used to Build Patriot Missiles" by Justin Rohrlich.
Is this only going on in the South? Absolutely not! Even in mostly "lily-white" Minnesota, we find a judge pointing out the racism in the prison-for-profit system.....
"Compared with the national average, people of color in Minnesota are more than twice as likely to obtain a criminal conviction. It isn't that people of color in Minnesota are more dishonest than elsewhere in our country, rather, there is something fundamentally wrong with the way our criminal justice system works...We, in Minnesota, have created an institutional underclass of people of color who are more likely to obtain a criminal record and less likely to get a job as a result . . . There are some simple steps we can take." -Mel Dickstein, Hennepin County District Judge, in the Star Tribune, 9-26-11.
Having served on the board of directors of prison-related programs out East and in Wisconsin, I know from where I speak. I was president of the board of directors of a residential program for women coming out of prison. Twice I testified before the state legislature committees on prisons. I was astonished to find how little the legislators know, even those on committees related to prisons, and even the chair of those committees. Their ignorance of the subject at hand was remarkable. Why would they care if they get financial support from some of the very corporations providing support for them? Disgusting. This is not capitlalism or free enterprise as any truly civilized nation would have it. It is war fever and slavery packaged together so certain corporations reap tremendous profits using slaves.