Saturday, October 18, 2014

Pay to Prey: Report on privatization

This is a report on the way Republican governors  have allowed corporations to profit from privatization deals at the expense of the public and the people who are supposed to be receiving the services.  Some of the stories are pretty lurid.  From  the report:

"Outsourcing of public services is a big business. Some experts estimate that $1 trillion out of the $6 trillion the federal government, together with state and local governments, spend annually are handed over to private contractors. In 2010, an electoral landslide ushered in a new breed of governors. Aided and abetted by corporate-funded legislative and lobbying groups, such as the American Legislative Exchange Counsel (ALEC), these governors pushed the envelope of outsourcing and privatization, selling public services to for-profit firms with their powerful political lobbies and related campaign contributions. In this process, transparency and accountability are lost and the public loses its ability to influence decision makers through normal democratic channels. Shared prosperity also suffers when good middle class jobs are lost to low-road, low-wage employers. In states across the country, schools, health care, prisons, prison food, water services, road services, state liquor sales, state economic development authorities, legal services, and even child support services were outsourced to private, for-profit companies. While the governors spoke of tight budgets and cost savings, a pattern emerged of influential corporate lobbyists and deep-pocketed campaign contributors In this effort to shrink government and sell off the prosperous parts to private interests, the winners are large corporations with a phalanx of lobbyists and campaign coffers big enough to buy political influence. All too often, taxpayers find themselves on the losing side."

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