public is against, and that's higher taxes. The public realizes that the privates do as good a job (or better) than the public and it is done without passing any prison bonds or raising taxes. Sure...there are incidents at the privates (which get blasted all over the press), but the rate of these incidents are twice as high at the public institutions as compared to the privates (for the source, see the "1998 Corrections Yearbook" published by the ACA).
This is an industry that is destined for high future growth, and the clean private companies should do well (and the others will probably get bought out at premiums to their prices today).
As the privates have seen over the past several years, the flow of contracts is somewhat of a rollercoaster, but in the end, you can pretty much count on 20+% growth...which is over twice what all these private corrections stocks are trading at.
I think there are better run private corrections companies than WHC, but that doesn't mean that WHC is not a solid company and a good bet for stock price growth.
When the dust settles, and the technology boom eventually comes down to earth (not if, but when), the strong fundamentals of private corrections will prevail.
IMHO, I concur with an earlier post that put the order of best picks in the industry as CRN, WHC, CSCQ and PZN .... but ALL should do well.
The earlier negative posts are clearly union/government-related people/disgruntled former employees (person?) playing back and forth with each other (or themself).
Good Luck to the longs in this industry...IMO, the return will be well worth it.
Oh, and to the poster who has a moral problem with this industry, realize that there are companies in this industry that put alot of excellent treatment into their prisons to improve the lives of these people who will eventually come back into society.