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WWL: A Nation Under Contract
Where We Live - with John Dankosky
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50:03 minutes (24.02 MB)
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Last week, a federal judge dismissed charges against the five Blackwater guards accused of the 2007 killing of seventeen Iraqi civilians in Baghdad.  The Iraqi government says it will pursue its own charges, but the episode brings renewed attention to the US government's controversial use of private contractors. Allison Stanger says the 2007 tragedy was not an isolated event, but rather the tip of the iceberg.

Stanger's new book, One Nation Under Contract explores the outsourcing of American power, a practice she says we'll need to perfect--because it's not going anywhere.

“While the American people's attention was focused elsewhere," Stanger writes, "private companies have become a permanent feature of what used to be called governance.”

So how do we get privitization right? Leave your questions and comments below.


Listener comment from Keith

I have heard recently that the cost of outsourcing overall is 30% higher than when handled by direct Federal employees. Is this correct?

Listener comment from Nina

re nationbuilding projects: wouldn't it really be more honest to call it occupation and installing puppet governments? thus for such a sleazy project it is quite proper to use mercenaries, aka contrractors. there is no way to commit americans to a good cause, there is no good cause