Thursday, March 8, 2012

What we now know- Walker destroyed Wisconsin more than we thought (Part 1)

You know how I had the pictures up yesterday on the failures of Scott Walker when it came to jobs? Well, as part of the monthly jobs report from DWD, we got benchmark revisions for all of 2011. And take a gander at how the pictures have now changed vs. what I had yesterday.

U.S. jobs pace vs. Wisconsin, all jobs

U.S. jobs pace vs. Wisconsin, private sector

Right away, you can see the effect of Walker's 2 "bombs." The first was Act 10, removing collective bargaining rights, signed in March 2011. In the 3 months before then, the state had gained 14,100 jobs. Immediately after Act 10, Wisconsin lost jobs for each of the next 5 months, and gave up 34,700 for the rest of the year. Even today's upside surprise of 12,500 still leaves us down more than 22,000 jobs since Act 10 was bullied through the Legislature.

The second bomb is the signing of Walker's budget, which happened in June 2011. If you look at the private sector chart, while Wisconsin had flatlined and fallen behind the rest of the nation's growth, the real damage happened after the budget became law. We lost private sector jobs in 5 of the last 6 months, and threw away 21,700 jobs overall for the rest of 2011 while U.S. private sector hiring was picking up. Sure, we got a nice, seasonally-adjusted boost in January of 15,700 jobs(I'll explain that in a later post- it ain't actually due to hiring), but we're still not back to where we were when the budget was signed, and are way behind the strengthing U.S. economy.

In fact, even with the bump up in January, the Walker jobs deficit has grown from the 40,000 I estimated it to be yesterday, because the 2011 revisions are that bad. Given the revisions, January's figures mean that if we had no revisions and the same total jobs numbers, we'd have LOST 7,200 jobs and 1,100 in the private sector. The deficit is currently near 53,000 in overall jobs, and 46,000 in private sector jobs, and amazingly that is DOWN from the deficits of 60,000 overall and 56,000 private that existed at the end of 2011. Frightening figures.

And the worst revision of them all? The June numbers in the report. You know, the ones I immediately had suspicions about and the ones that Walker's DWD told him were tourism-based and sketchy, but he took credit for anyway. Well, turns out the pros were right, it was bullshit.

Wisconsin June jobs
June reported total jobs +11,000
June revised total jobs -9,000 (-20,000 revision)

June reported total jobs +14,800
June revised total jobs ZERO (-14,800 revision)

Amazing how those figures came out right before the recall elections, and now these nice numbers come out near a Walker recall election. That alone should make you question the increase. But even if the state is finally catching onto the Obama recovery, it still doesn't come close to making up for the damage that Walker and WisGOP inflicted on it in 2011, and we'll going to have to work extra hard just to get out of the hole these guys have put us in.

P.S. The revisions also reiterate that Walker landed in a pretty good situation when he took office. Check out the Wisconsin jobs numbers for the last year of the Doyle Administration and Dem-controlled Legislature, and compare it to 1 year of Walker and WisGOP being in control.

2010- +51,500 private sector jobs, +42,000 total jobs
2011- -9,700 private sector jobs, -20,600 total jobs

That's a fall of over 60 THOUSAND JOBS in one year, in a time when the rest of the nation improved. How are these guys not getting torches and pitchforks for what they've done?

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