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The Prison State of America

We are becoming more aware that privatized prisons lead the way in prisoner exploitation. Are they also prototypes of future worker exploitation?

The Prison State of America

Prisons employ and exploit the ideal worker. Prisoners do not receive benefits or pensions. They are not paid overtime. They are forbidden to organize and strike. They must show up on time. They are not paid for sick days or granted vacations. They cannot formally complain about working conditions or safety hazards. If they are disobedient, or attempt to protest their pitiful wages, they lose their jobs and can be sent to isolation cells. The roughly 1 million prisoners who work for corporations and government industries in the American prison system are models for what the corporate state expects us all to become. And corporations have no intention of permitting prison reforms that would reduce the size of their bonded workforce. In fact, they are seeking to replicate these conditions throughout the society….

Prisons are not, finally, about race, although poor people of color suffer the most. They are not even about being poor. They are prototypes for the future. They are emblematic of the disempowerment and exploitation that corporations seek to inflict on all workers. If corporate power continues to disembowel the country, if it is not impeded by mass protests and revolt, life outside prison will soon resemble life in prison.

Chris Hedges, TruthDig

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About The Author

JoAnn Chateau

JoAnn Chateau likes progressive politics and loves the canines. She writes fiction about an alpha Bichon named Chester, and his friends--with a dash of humor and a dab of poli-sci. JoAnn worked professionally in the Psychology and Information Science fields. Retired now, she enjoys the creative life.

2 Comments

  1. skywalkerstoryteller

    This is one possible scenario in the realm of many. I do not see it. The generations being born will not allow it. Neither will we.

    • JoAnn Chateau

      I hope you are right! I hope we will be thanking the MacDonald’s and Walmart workers/strikers/protesters of today, and the Occupy Movement, and seeing them fill chapters in future history books.

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