<And when this leverage results from something other than growth, when its only promises to be decretive, that's a big negative.>
1) leverage IS coming from growth. This is new prisons we're talking about.
2) each deal is accretive or they wouldn't do it. They will borrow the money at 9% or 9 1/2%, and get a 20% (AFTER the increased OPCO fees) rate of return. How on earth do you figure that's decretive???
Sure there is all sorts of business risk. Ther is also risk in hotels, internet companies and drug manufacturers. There is risk in getting into your car. There is risk buying a CD (change in interest rates, etc.).
There is also a matter of confidence. You either trust the bastards or you don't. If you don't, get the hell out quick.
Doc has built something pretty powerful. He's not perfect, but he's trying to get richer. I'm happy to take a chance and go along for the ride. The fundamentals are too overwhelming not to.