Thursday, January 7, 2016

Liberal Wisconsin counties are fine- Gannon should care about his own backyard

You may have heard about State Rep. Bob Gannon's racist press release that tried to deflect from the failure of Scott Walker and WisGOP policies to grow the economy in Wisconsin. In addition to being yet another reason to avoid Right Trashington Washington County and the rest of the 262 area code outside of the cities of Racine and Kenosha, Chris Walker at Political Heat actually looked into the numbers and says Rep. Gannon is DEAD WRONG in his assertion that the Milwaukee area is what's dragging the state's economy down.

Walker went directly to the recently released Quarterly Census on Employment and Wages looked at private sector job growth for the June 2014 - June 2015 period, and found that economically Milwaukee County is doing just fine.
...the violence in Milwaukee County, while a major problem that needs to be fixed right away, isn’t driving away jobs. The yearly rate of private sector jobs growth in Milwaukee County (1.2 percent) is similar to the rate seen statewide (1.3 percent), which places the county at the median for all counties [in] Wisconsin.

In other words, while half the state’s counties are doing better than Milwaukee in producing a higher rate in jobs, half the state is doing worse than the county overall.

Additionally, Milwaukee County accounted for more than 16 percent of the net jobs growth in the state over the past year as well, a good rate to have considering that the county has 16 percent of the state’s population base.

More new businesses are being created in Milwaukee County. In fact, Milwaukee County saw 1,175 net new businesses spring up over the past year, an increase of total businesses in the county of about 4.9 percent.

Contrast that to Washington County, where Rep. Gannon is from. That county saw an additional 93 net new businesses from June 2014 to June 2015, a yearly rate increase of only 3.1 percent.
Yes, Washington County added jobs at a higher RATE in the June 2014-June 2015 time period than Milwaukee County (2.0% vs. Milw Co's 1.2%), but Milwaukee County added a lot more total private sector jobs in the 12 months measured (over 5,000 vs less than 1,000 in Washington County). And let's not forget that Milwaukee County gets the most tourism dollars in the state, and had an increase in local county 0.5% sales taxes in 2015 that was nearly $360,000 more than Washington County's - a figure that translates into higher growth in state sales taxes of $3.6 million.

If Rep. Gannon wants to talk about areas of the state that aren't pulling their weight, why isn't he talking about his neighbors to the west in Dodge County, who lost 53 jobs in the last 12 months (0.2%), and had local sales taxes drop by 3.7% in 2015? And he definitely should talk about Wood County (Marshfield area), which lost 75 private sector jobs in the last year (0.2%) and has lost more than 5,500 private sector jobs in the last 3 years, as well as had sales taxes drop in Wood County by more than 8% in 2015?

Or what about Rusk, Marinette, and Richland Counties, Bobby? They also had private sector job losses and sales tax decreases in the last 12 months measured? It couldn't be because all of those counties are more than 90% white and represented by Republicans, could it? NOOOOOOOO!

And if he wants an example of what Milwaukee could do to get ahead, why doesn't he discuss Dane County? After all, Dane County had a solid private sector growth rate of 2.5% (nearly twice the state rate), added nearly 6,100 private sector jobs (the most of any county in Wisconsin), and has added over 22,000 private sector jobs in the last 4 years. Oh, but we're just elitist smarty-pantses that are over-ejukated and there's NOTHING you "real Wisconsinites" in Washington County would want to learn from our booming economy and high quality of life, is there?

But let's give Bobby Gannon the benefit of the doubt. If "one cannot ignore the correlation between jobs and crime, [and] employment opportunities will only expand in these neighborhoods when the violence is stopped," then why not take some steps to do so? Like having large-scale infrastructure projects in poor Milwaukee communities that clean up wrecked neighborhoods, and allowing the City of Milwaukee to raise its own revenues so it becomes easier to hire the cops and improve the services that can cut into crime and the desperation that leads to it.

Oh wait, that would require actually giving a crap about the problem of poverty and lack of job opportunities, instead of using the majority-minority city of Milwaukee as a boogeyman to distract your right trash constituents from the fact that their lives in the 262 suck as well and aren't getting any better. And so things never do seem to get much better, either in Milwaukee (at least as long as GOPpers like Bob Gannon and Scott Walker are in charge), or in Washington County, even if they get minor short-term benefits from increasing sprawl. Then you wonder why the big cities have been kicking your 262 suburb trash asses up and down the lot when it comes to attracting young people and talent, while anyone with a brain is moves out of racist, cultural cesspools like West Bend and Slinger as soon as they can?

You know what's funny, Bob Gannon and the 262 trailer trash know this fact as well as anyone, and that the 2010s are leaving their mentality behind (not fast enough mind you, but it is happening). And that's why they resent us like they do, and why they try so hard to point out problems in "liberal big cities", because it keeps them from admitting their way of life and their economic policies are massive failures for anyone other than a well-connected few.


  1. What's especially frustrating is that racist troglodytes like Gannon are tap-dancing around a real issue (connecting dots in the wrong direction) and exacerbating it...

    Yes, there is violence in MKE and we need to be aware of it so that it gets addressed, but as it relates to economic growth, he's only fueling white 262-ers irrational fears and promoting further self-segregation. There are a LOT of folks in the "WOW" counties who are literally too scared from watching the 10:00 news to ever venture east of Miller Park; and for whom going to Mayfair Mall is an adventurous cultural experience. Even with MKE currently around the state median, keeping all of that demand squarely west of 124th St has got to be a legitimate drag on Milwaukee's economy/employment.

    I'm sure Gannon would need a change of pants, but I really think every state legislator should have to spend 24-48 hrs in the poorer areas of MKE, talking to people, riding the bus, figuring out how to get to the store or school, seeing what life is like for about 10% of Wisconsinites. They'll see poverty, and they'll see folks going to work and shoveling snow and taking care of shit that needs to get done, but they won't find anything to be scared of.

    1. But if they actually saw poor and working-class minorities as PEOPLE, then the 262 types wouldn't be able to hate them as much, and might feel empathy. Can't have that in the WOW Counties, especially since it might actually lead to dangerous things like asking "Shouldn't we do something about this?"

      Also it would make them wonder why the poor in Washington County are getting jacked over by the low-wage, low-tax memtality.Better to keep them angry and scared as opposed to dealing with the problems.

  2. It is a pity that Gov. Walker could only make the pretty empty promise of the State investing $100 million in Milwaukee to create jobs.

    Where is the money and where are the jobs?

    Before he even got into the Governors mansion he was chasing Talgo trains out of Milwaukee by killing high speed rail.

    I wonder if there was just too much political payback that he needed to inflict on Milwaukee?

    Milwaukee Mayor ran against him twice, his trolley must be stopped.

    The Milwaukee County Board would not let him destroy Milwaukee County, they needed to be stripped of their power.

    1. Yep. No concept of "governing", whatsoever. Just power-grabs and childish vengeance. And how does that help anyone who has a normal life?

      But it only stops when we make them stop, by removing these childish lowlifes frôm power, and in working for a long time after to keep them out.