Sunday, February 13, 2011

You want Wisconsin to be like Indiana and Jersey, Scotty?

So, Scott Walker wants to take the Chris Christie method of scapegoating and talking tough against public employees as a way to control their state's fiscal problems, and also wants to use Mitch Daniels' theories in Indiana of selling off any state agency to a private vendor. Well, let's see how those places have fared in the last year with these policies in charge, and compare it to how we've been doing in Wisconsin. I mean, Walker wouldn't be pursuing these ideas if they weren't working and could make us better off here in the home of Titletown, right?

Let's go with number of jobs and unemployment in the last year. I've also included private sector unemployment change to avoid the complaints if the job number are skewed by public sector job cuts.

Wisconsin +32,600 jobs (+31,600 private), 7.5% unemployment (down 1.0% vs end of '09)
New Jersey -30,700 jobs (-1,600 private), 9.1% unemployment (down 0.9% vs.'09)
Indiana +25,100 jobs (+36,400 private), 9.5% unemployment (down 0.2% vs. '09)

So cutting jobs in Jersey's public sector certainly has not translated into job growth in the private sector, which is doubly remarkable when you figure Wall Street's comeback should translate into growth in an area that has plenty of commuters into NYC. So no, cutting the public sector does not raise the tide for others in New Jersey, at least so far.

Indiana seems to be doing well on the total jobs front, but hasn't cut into unemployment nearly as high as Wisconsin has, and still has unemployment 2% higher than we do. This also doesn't bring up the fact that Indiana had a drop in median household income of 4.7% in 2009 under My Man Mitch, which is well above the national average drop of 2.9%, and Wisconsin's 3.8%. In addition, Indiana's household income would have to go up by 10% to reach ours, so a large amount of those jobs are clearly low-wage, low-skill.

So why copy the ways of New Jersey and Indiana as policies when they clearly are substandard compared to what we have right now? Unless the plan is to make skilled Wisconsinites miserable and want to leave, which means there's a higher percentage of the population left who are dumb and going nowhere, or with "big fish, small pond" syndrome and fear of competition for their high status.

In other words, we'd be left with more of the type of dopes who might still support Scott Walker and WisGOP. Hmmm......Maybe Walker's antics aren't so crazy, now are there? With WisGOP, it's not "the economy, stupid", it's POWER.

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