Data Wonk

Did Walker Save Wisconsin’s Economy?

So claims his supporters at WILL. Let’s consider the evidence they offer.

By - Nov 29th, 2017 12:20 pm
Gov. Scott Walker. Photo by Kate Golden of the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism.

Gov. Scott Walker. Photo by Kate Golden of the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism.

If one types the words “Walker Wisconsin Economy” into a search engine, among the first page results are a link to a post for The Federalist entitled Yes, Scott Walker Did Back Wisconsin’s Economy Away From A Cliff. It’s written by by Jake Curtis and Will Flanders, two staff members at the Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty’s (WILL) Center for Competitive Federalism.

The post was in response to my April Data Wonk column, ALEC and Wisconsin’s Economy, which pointed out that Wisconsin’s improved “Outlook” score from the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) since Walker took office was not accompanied by a better Performance score from the same organization.

The authors’ apparent aim is two-fold: defending Walker’s record on the Wisconsin economy and the agenda advocated by ALEC. To do this, Curtis and Flanders adopt Walker’s favorite argument– comparing today’s Wisconsin economy with the economy when Walker entered office.

“When Scott Walker was sworn in as Wisconsin’s 45th governor in January 2011,” they say, “the state’s economic performance during the previous eight years had been dismal, and the outlook was worse.” This argument closing parallels a recent Walker opinion piece in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel supporting the Trump tax plan: “When I took office in 2011, the people of our state were suffering from record job loss …” Today, Walker adds, “Our state’s economy is growing …”

This “then/now” argument used by Walker and the WILL writers assumes the reader is completely ignorant of what else was happening at the time. In January 2011, when Walker entered office, both the national and Wisconsin economies were just starting their second year of recovery from the Great Recession. Today, after seven more years of recovery, practically every state’s economy is in much better shape than it was seven years ago.

That Wisconsin hasn’t done as well as most of these states is documented in a report from ALEC itself. Every year, it publishes a report, called Rich States Poor States, that rates states on two measures. One is an “Outlook” scale based on how well a state conforms to ALEC’s policy prescriptions. The other is a “Performance” scale, based on how the state has performed over the past ten years on three measures: state gross domestic product, absolute domestic migration of state residents, and non-farm payroll employment.

The policies going into the Outlook score track the current right-wing policy agenda. Generally, ALEC rates a state more highly for policies that make wealthy people wealthier and keeps labor cheap. For example, Wisconsin is rewarded for lacking an estate tax and a minimum wage, and for its right-to-work law weakening unions.

Underlying these policies is a belief that prosperity is caused by wealthy people and depends on low labor costs. This belief underlies the ill-fated tax reductions in Kansas, the current GOP tax proposals, and the Walker agenda. Reflecting Walker’s policies, ALEC rates Wisconsin as 14th best in Outlook.

However, that change has not generated a similar gain in the ALEC Performance score. On Performance, Wisconsin has been stuck around 40th place since before Walker was governor. Curtis and Flanders’ main response to this problem is to blame Walker’s predecessor:

More fundamentally, because the performance measure is based on ten-year data, it will tend to lag changes in the outlook measure. Here, the better performance of the Walker years is dragged down by the far worse performance of the preceding Gov. Jim Doyle years.

Curtis and Flanders, however, make no attempt to verify this assertion. Would excluding the Doyle years help Wisconsin’s Performance rating? To answer this question requires a look at the three measures used to calculate the Performance rating: gross domestic product (GDP), net migration of state residents, and jobs growth.

The next graph shows real GDP for Wisconsin, Minnesota, and the US starting in 2003, when Doyle took office. Wisconsin’s growth in GDP lagged both that of the nation and of the slightly smaller Minnesota over the entire period—and it did so during both governorships. It appears that starting the comparison at 2011 would have had a negligible effect on Wisconsin’s rating.

Real GDP in chained 2009 dollars

Real GDP in chained 2009 dollars

The second measure ALEC uses is net migration. The graph below, taken from ALEC’s report, shows net migration into and out of Wisconsin. The negative numbers indicate that every year more people left Wisconsin than entered. If anything, the net outflow has become larger during the Walker years, so that limiting the data to the Walker years would likely have hurt Wisconsin’s standing.

Absolute Domestic Migration Cumulative 2006-2015

Absolute Domestic Migration Cumulative 2006-2015

ALEC’s third and final Performance measure is employment growth. Since Walker took office, the state’s percentage of national employment has shrunk at a faster rate than during the Doyle years.

In short, if ALEC started its clock in 2011, when Walker took office, Wisconsin’s Performance ranking would decline, not improve.

Whether or not ALEC’s three Performance measures are the right way to judge a state’s economy, at least they qualify as economic measures. They attempt to reflect whether a state’s residents are prospering. Other than unemployment, none of the other measures Curtis and Flanders bring up—taxes, deficits, segregated funds, reserves—measure the state’s economy. Instead they measure the fiscal health of government. While a healthy government may contribute to a healthy economy, they do not measure the prosperity of the population.

There other factors that could be used to assess the health of the Wisconsin economy. Several are suggested in a PolitFact article from last April. In it the Journal Sentinel’s Tom Kertscher and Andrew Mollica evaluated a claim from Scott Walker that “Wisconsin’s economy is in the best shape it’s been since 2000.”

After consulting several economists, Kertscher and Mollica decided to test the claim using six economic measures. They find that three of these—the unemployment rate, average weekly wages, and gross domestic product per capita—support Walker’s claim.  However, three other measures—the labor participation rate, income inequality, and the poverty rate—suggest that the Wisconsin economy has worsened.

As a result, Kertscher and Mollica label Walker’s claim as “half true.” They are careful, however, not to take the next leap: to conclude that the changes, good and bad, are due to Walker.

Notably, ALEC misses no opportunity in its reports to attack California and its governor, Jerry Brown, as the epitome of bad economic policy. Yet in the seven years since both Walker and Brown took office, California’s job growth has far outstripped that of most other states, including Wisconsin.

Percentage Job Growth Since 1/1/2011

Percentage Job Growth Since 1/1/2011

Historically, economic activity was very dependent on geography. Closeness to raw materials and intersections of transportation routes often determined where economies expanded. Today, having an environment that people find attractive is increasingly important. The policies advocated by ALEC do little to enhance the attractiveness of a state.

Curtis and Flanders, as well as Walker himself, start with two desired conclusions: that Governor Walker saved the Wisconsin economy and that the program advocated by ALEC brings prosperity—and work backwards from there, ignoring widely available economic measures. Unfortunately, that is not a recipe for serious policy analysis. It is however a recipe for extremely bad economic policy, such as the current Trump tax plans, that have been widely rejected by the public and by serious economists.

Categories: Data Wonk, Politics

35 thoughts on “Data Wonk: Did Walker Save Wisconsin’s Economy?”

  1. Rich says:

    This “then/now” argument used by Walker and the WILL writers assumes the reader is completely ignorant of what else was happening at the time.

    In today’s world of “Facebook guides my voting”, they’ve got it right for 51% of the people, and that’s all they need.

  2. WashCoRepub says:

    Oh, I’ve got a pretty good idea of what this state would look like today under Governor Tom Barrett. **shudder**

  3. John Casper says:


    Evidently, you don’t drive.

    Gov. Barrett would have given airlines competition by accepting federal money for high speed rail. That would have created a pipeline of development along the Chicago Madison corridor. That would have relieved I-94 congestion.

    We’d wouldn’t be $3 billion deeper in the hole to Foxconn, which is controlled by Taiwan and China.

  4. Terry says:

    Answer, No. All we have up north is poverty, unemployment alcoholism and hopelesslessness. Everybody is either dying or moving out west for jobs and freedom. People tend to value things like that.
    Dump Walker. Legalize cannabis!

  5. Rightly offended by WILL, the column gets a bit bogged down in demonstrating that even ALEC recognizes Walker has been bad for state economy. If the conservatives suspect about Walker’s economic policies, the majority of the state knows if they can get their act together around a candidate. Hopefully they will not waste time blaming Walker as he continued to do with Doyle.

  6. John Casper says:


    In this Isthmus piece, Bruce explained that Wisconsin imports $12 billion a year in fossil fuels.

    Under Gov. Barrett, we’d be much closer to creating that power. Most of that would come through lease revenue to Wisconsin farmers for wind turbines and solar arrays. As the cost of electricity goes down, electric vehicles replace gasoline.

    Wind and solar have no fuel, storage, or clean-up costs.

    National security starts with local security. Local security depends on local access to drinkable, potable water, safe food, and sustainable energy.

  7. Troll says:

    Tom Barrett really never gave us any direction on how he would have lead Wisconsin other than saying he would put government on a diet. State taxes would have had to go up to cover the amount of government spending and deficits left by Jim Doyle. I am sure Barrett would bully those nine billionaires in the state and ask for the peoples riches back. How dare they profit so much off their businesses. Teachers would pester customers in grocery stores for buying Zip lock bags. Your voluntarily giving your money to Billionaires. State worker would boycott Menard’s business and prevent customers from going in. No one will protest Judy Faulkner though she personally pays a pittances to Madison in taxes. She is a lefty and must be left untouched.

  8. Terry says:

    Doyle inherited a deficit. Tom Barrett is not Governor. Scott Walker is a career politician and the biggest Big Government moocher in the state who has never worked a single day in the private sector or in the “free market” so he doesn’t understand business and thus sold out the state to a Taiwainese, ahem, Chinese company and now he wants to be Governor for Life! Time to tell Walker to take a Hiker!

  9. Wisconsin Conservative Digest says:

    Just another article written by a lefty hack. Want to see what Wisconsin would be like under Barrett?? Bigger pot for the public employees, bad roads, unemployment, 50% higher property taxes, poverty in Milwaukee highest in country Milwaukee one of the worst run cites slops over tot the state, top ten worst crime, corruption, higher taxes, abandoned homes and businesses, No Amazon, heroin epidemic far worse as it has spread out from Milwaukee more regulations. No jobs fro the futre kids without FoxConn and all it will bring.

  10. Max says:

    Fact: The GOP has a long history of destroying the US/State economies for the overwhelming majority of citizens.
    Fact: The GOP has a long history of pushing policies and tax laws that only make the already ultra wealthy even wealthier.
    Fact: The GOP has a long history of hawking kool-aid to sell their true intention to the gullible.

    Conclusion: If you want to get ahead or at least stay above water economically, don’t drink the Walker/GOP kool-aid.

    Proof: Take a look the current tax plan pushed by the GOP and Trump, who the other day made the incredible statement that he “would loose millions” due to the plan, while every independent analysis shows he stands to put millions upon millions more in his fat pockets, while millions of middle class Americans will pay more. Walker embraces the same lies as Trump.

  11. Max says:

    WCD … you apparently got the names and offices confused here. You were obviously thinking about Scoot Walker’s tenure as Milwaukee County Exec, when he was driving the County over the economic cliff, just as he’s doing now with the entire State. Thankfully, the Milwaukee area now has two capable officials in leadership positions, and both the County and City are now seeing the results with increasing prosperity for citizens. Oh, and please don’t fault Milwaukee for the high rates of alcoholism, drunk driving, and drug use in the suburban areas, no one is forcing residents there to drive after too many JW’s or do dope .. Milwaukee stands at the ready to help our suburban friends with these and other regional problems such as too high of property taxes (thanks to Walker), bad roads (thanks to Walker). Btw, the most corrupt official in this region, DClarke, left for a phantom federal job that never materialized, in case you haven’t heard.

  12. Terry says:

    Poverty rates in Wisconsin, ahem, in Walker’s Wississippi as many now call it, are at 35 year highs. 35 year highs under Walker. Wages are very low relative to neighboring states and benefits are few to none. Wisconsin is dead last in entrepreneurship and new business start ups. Wisconsin has the fastest shrinking middle class in the country. The young and educated are fleeing in a mass exodus from Wisconsin to truly progressive, thriving places with great business and social environments like Boston, Denver, Seattle, Portland etc. which have tons of great jobs and opportunities. Now Walker wants to waste 7 more million on luring young educated professionals to Wisconsin. Um, sorry nobody is moving to Walker’s Wississippi. Young educated people value things like social and economic freedom and both are nonexistent in Wississippi. They value things like good jobs and pay, gay marriage, abortion rights, legal cannabis and Scott Walker hates these things so the exodus will continue while all Wisconsin taxpayer’s get is pothole strewn roads, collapsing infrastructure, a gutted education system, an eroded environment, a billion dollar DOT budget deficit and a 3 billion dollar bill to subsidize corporate welfare for a foreign company. That’s not saving anything, that is utter destruction. But hey you can still drive drunk as hell in Wissiissippi and it’s not a criminal offense and take your baby in diapers out in the woods hunting with ya. How’s all that makin’ America great agaain workin’ out fer ya?
    Dump Walker in 2018

  13. Jd says:

    I stopped reading when he started citing rich guy this and that….yet another biased article that you lefties are willing to take as gospel truth. And if anyone spouts something from Fox they are right wing sheep….ha I hear plenty of bleating comeing from these comments. If you think the economy would be better under Democrat control you are either clinically delusional or just outright unwilling to give any credit for walker. You want to see what 8 more years of dem control would look like?? Just take a gander of the economy/state finances on the other side. Disaster!!! If you think Foxconn would have been shot down if it somehow fell in the lap of a Democrat gov you are again lying to yourself. The opposition to Foxconn is purely political.

  14. John Casper says:


    The first appearance of “rich” in the post is from one of Gov. Walker’s biggest supporters, the American Legislative Executive Council.

    You’re not a conservative. If you were, you’d know that Samuel Adams led the Sons of Liberty onto ships owned by the East India Company–a monopoly–to dump their tea into Boston Harbor.

    Jd, welfare doesn’t work. $3 billion for Harley-Davidson would have been bad, but preferable to $3B to a corporation controlled by China and Taiwan.

    Economies rest on a three-legged stool, shareholders, workers, and consumers.

    “Without spending–there are no sales;

    Without sales–there are no profits;

    Without profits–there is no demand for workers;

    Without demand for workers–there is no job creation;

    and without job creation–there is no recovery!”


    It’s government’s job to balance the risk/reward among shareholders, workers, and consumers. Since about 1970, shareholders–especially elite shareholders–have increasingly been insulated from risk, while taking a greater portion of the rewards.

    That’s not sustainable. For example young people can’t afford to get married let alone buy homes. That means older homeowners, who want to sell, can’t get a fair price.

    You don’t have to be a Democrat to support collective bargaining. Eisenhower and Reagan supported unions.

    “Today in America, unions have a secure place in our industrial life. Only a handful of reactionaries harbor the ugly thought of breaking unions and depriving working men and women of the right to join the union of their choice. I have no use for those — regardless of their political party — who hold some vain and foolish dream of spinning the clock back to days when organized labor was huddled, almost as a hapless mass. Only a fool would try to deprive working men and women of the right to join the union of their choice.” —Dwight D. Eisenhower

    Ronald Reagan saying no “freedom,” without “collective bargaining” in the 90-second clip is worth a listen.

    “These are the values inspiring those brave workers in Poland, the values that have inspired other dissidents under communist domination, who have been willing to go into the gulag and suffer the torture of imprisonment, because of their dissidence. They remind us that where free unions and collective bargaining are forbidden, freedom is lost… They remind us that freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. You and I must protect and preserve freedom here, or it will not be passed on to our children and it will disappear everywhere in the world. Today, the workers in Poland are showing a new generation how high is the price of freedom, but also how much, it is worth that price. I want more than anything I’ve ever wanted, to have an administration that will through its actions, at home and in the international arena, let millions of people know, that Miss Liberty, still lifts her lamp beside the golden door.”

  15. Terry says:

    @Jd, why is it that in every leading economic indicator progressive blue states are literally running circles around far right wing red states like Wississippi? People are fleeing Wississippi and moving to progressive blue states in droves. Even Minnesota had 100k new people move there but Wisconsin has net outflows! My beautiful home state of Washington is consistently the #1 economy in the country, year after year, it’s powerhouse and it’s totally run by democrats and has been for a long time and it’s literally overrun by prosperity these days, great paying jobs, business opportunities, progressive, inclusive society. I don’t see anything like that in Wisconsin these days. Honestly all I see is a lot of confederate flags, drunks, pothole strewn streets, unemployment, poverty and hopelessness. Red states like Wississippi are dying. Time to tell Walker to take a hike!

  16. Wisconsin Conservative Digest says:

    we have a great expanding economy with the most people working in our history, more teachers working then ever, End of story. Rest is BS.

  17. Terry says:

    And by “the rest” WCD (aka Archie Bunker) means everything he wrote and has ever written on this site. Don’t be fooled kids. You can’t change reality by calling BS. It’s still reality.

    Dump Walker in 2018!

  18. Max says:

    WCD …
    The facts say just the opposite of the conclusion you’ve reached. Care to show any objective data/facts that supports your view? Before writing again, I strongly encourage you to go to a dictionary for the meaning of the word “objective” in this context, also you might want to consider reading a primer on what data and facts are.

  19. Rather typical diatribes against their invented Barrett from WisConservative and WashRep that actually reveals much of what Walker has dragged the state into. And today he lowers requirements for licensing. which are probably going to lead to a lot of barbershop visitors to ask, “Were you trained pre-Walker or post”?

  20. tom says:

    I can’t describe the situation here in Wississippi any better than Terry. I second the argument that young people are not looking for Walker’s version of govt. Walker should have been ousted in the recall before he had a chance to further destroy our state. If I were still young and just out of college this is the last environment I’d want to establish a career in. I’d head to Minnesota, Colorado or the west coast. Dump Walker!

  21. John Casper says:

    Wisconsin Wingnut Digest, if Wisconsin has a “great expanding economy,” why $3B in welfare for Foxconn?

  22. Terry says:

    Great question John. And also, why are poverty rates in Wisconsin higher than they have been in over 30 years?! Answer: Because career politician Big Government moocher Scott Walker turned Wisconsin into Wississippi. Low wage, no benefit crap jobs.

  23. JPKMKE says:

    Why is Wisconsin’s economy growing slower? Too much growth in government jobs and not enough large private sector job growth. Using Minnesota as an example, WI grew it’s government jobs at more than twice the rate of MN, but grew Private Services, Healthcare, Construction and Mining, and Trade and Transportation at much lower rates than MN.

  24. John Casper says:



    Per former PIMCO chief economist Paul McCulley, “Remember, the government sector’s liability is the private sector’s asset!”

    Republicans are right about cutting federal taxes, both sides of the payroll tax, income, and corporate taxes.

    Democrats are right about vastly increased federal spending on health care, education, green infrastructure, and research. What matters is the real economy, the part that makes stuff. Finance is supposed to serve that. We’ve got it backwards.

    We can run out of drinkable, potable water; safe food, sustainable energy, some metals, minerals, and medicines. We cannot run out of dollars. The currency is a public monopoly. Laws about abusing federal contracts–Medicaid fraud for example–remain in force. It’s still stealing from the taxpayers.

    How do you send real output back in time? How much would a 2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee fetch in 1980? The U.S. Treasury creates most dollars electronically, same way scoreboards at Lambeau creates points. Ever hear a Packer fan worry the scoreboards might run out of points? If the U.S. government borrows in oil, gold–something other than dollars–all bets are off.

    As former Federal Bank of NY Reserve Chair Beardsley Ruml wrote in 1946, “Taxes For Revenue Are Obsolete.”…/taxes-for-revenue-are… Please note, Mr. Ruml was referring to federal taxes. Please note, he did not mean that taxes, themselves, were obsolete. They aren’t. In case of demand-pull inflation–too many dollars chasing too few goods–federal taxes work to reduce aggregate demand. That’s one of several key benefits of taxes. The federal government, however, is not constrained in its spending by tax revenue. It can and should spend consistent with promoting democratic capitalism.

    Economists, Warren Mosler, Stephanie Kelton, Pavlina Tcherneva and other proponents of what’s known as Modern Monetary Theory are excellent resources.
    “The Rock Star Appeal of Modern Monetary Theory.”

    The fiscal illiterates in both parties would have lost WW2. What can’t be replaced are the soldiers’ lives lost. That was the real cost. U.S. had limited amounts of steel, oil, rubber, …. other resources need to win.

    GOP is correct. Federal spending on anything increases the price on the supply chain required to make it.

    Economist Pavlina Tcherneva’s “Antidote to Deficit Phobia” is a four-page gem.

  25. John Casper says:

    JPK, apologies for not including this in my earlier response.

    Next time someone complains about federal spending, ask them about the $193 trillion in free insurance for derivatives.

    Isn’t annual U.S. GDP still around $18 trillion?

    See p. 13.

    Where was the “pay-as-you-go” on that?

    Republicans keep claiming the national debt is around $20 trillion, because they want to cut Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.

  26. JPKMKE says:

    John Casper – I admit I set up a conditional argument which was unnecessary. The proportion of government jobs in MN is very similar to WI. Would this say it better? Wisconsin needed to grow in large private sector jobs as it did in public sector job growth. Using Minnesota as an example, WI grew it’s government jobs at more than twice the rate of MN, but grew Private Services, Healthcare, Construction and Mining, and Trade and Transportation at much lower rates than MN.

  27. John Casper says:


    You haven’t made any argument, conditional or otherwise.

    1. Any reason you ignored $193 trillion in free derivative insurance?

    2. Do you understand what a derivative is?

    “Without spending–there are no sales;

    Without sales–there are no profits;

    Without profits–there is no demand for workers;

    Without demand for workers–there is no job creation;

    and without job creation–there is no recovery!”

    From economist @ptcherneva

    3. Where’s the s-p-e-n-d-i-n-g coming from that’s going to create these private sector jobs?

    4. Are you talking about domestic Wisconsin consumption?

    5. Are you talking about exports to other states?

    6. Are you talking about exports to other countries.

    7. What are “large” private sector jobs as opposed to small private sector jobs?

    8. Without a link, why should I take seriously your claims about MN and WI jobs seriously?

  28. JPKMKE says:

    John Casper – I’m not going to footnote my remarks for you. PIMCO sells bonds, and you might incorporate their motivation into your analysis. You’re saying that the reason the WI economy hasn’t grown is due to free derivative insurance? I do not agree. You can also keep your snarky comments about your exclusive knowledge of derivative markets to yourself.

  29. John Casper says:


    As of June 2016, PIMCO managed around $1.5 trillion in assets.

    “PIMCO offers a broad list of investment strategies that encompass the entire risk spectrum and capital structure, including core bonds and credit, structured credit, alternatives, real assets, equities and currencies.”

    Hope that helps.

    Hope you enjoy the 21-second video.
    “While Chief Marge Gunderson waits for Jerry Lundegaard to return to is office to continue the interview, she looks out the window to see him flee in his car.”

    That’s a “no” on responding to all eight questions?

    Making stuff up is not the same as refusing to “footnote” your remarks.

    When you keep providing such great openings, how I am suppose to keep my “snarky comments” to myself?

  30. JPKMKE says:

    John Casper – Go back before your commercial for PIMCO to my remarks on jobs. Congruent to your statement on spending, economic growth in this State is hinging on jobs. Debt can be used to drive job growth with reasonable ROI, I do not disagree if that was your point. Decreased government spending in this State, at this moment, will not increase jobs necessarily, but increased growth in private sector jobs vs public sector jobs would. Why? Because a private sector job with 130% to 250% of public sector spending power will impact fundamentals. To your point on local consumption, I would expect that driving local consumption will only have limited effect due to the fact that WI has a workforce of 2.5M working age and willing participants and available job vacancies of only 4% of eligible workforce. WI would need to import employers as a result. I’m not arguing for austerity economics. My point is, it’s about how the state can drive job growth.

  31. John Casper says:


    9. When will you respond to questions 1 – 8?

    You wrote, “…because a private sector job with 130% to 250% of public sector spending power will impact fundamentals.”

    10. What’s an example of “a private sector job with more than 250% of public sector spending power?”

    11. What do you mean by “public sector spending power?”

    12. What’s the difference between public sector and private sector “spending power?”

    13. What’s an example of “a private sector job with less than 130% of public sector spending power?”

    14. Where did I make “a point” about “local consumption?”

    15. Where did I make “a point” that “debt can be used to drive job growth with reasonable ROI?”

    You wrote, “decreased government spending in this State, at this moment, will not increase jobs necessarily, but increased growth in private sector jobs vs public sector jobs would.”

    16. Do you mean federal spending or state spending?

    Thanks for avoiding “my point.”

    17. Unless you think that in a particular market government is “crowding out the private sector,” where is the causal connection between decreased government spending and increased private investment?

    Hewlett Packard administers Wisconsin Medicaid. They’re stealing the state blind. There’s no competition. No one in Madison has the IT skills to manage them.

    Gun and ammo manufacturers will sell a lot more guns and ammo if they can eliminate law enforcement jobs.

    18. What’s the economic benefit from that?

    The wealthy can hire their own security forces?

    Read about the Lincoln County War, the Johnson County War. , the Pleasant Valley War The wealthy buy their own police forces and justice. They create jobs.

    JP Morgan administers the federal food stamp program.

    Gov. Walker can try, but forcing employers to hire more workers never works.

    “An entrepreneur is interested, not in the amount of product, but in the amount of money which will fall to his share. He will increase his output if by so doing he expects to increase his money profit, even though this profit represents a smaller quantity of product than before. […] Thus the classical theory fails us at both ends, so to speak, if we try to apply it to an entrepreneur economy. For it is not true that the entrepreneur’s demand for labour depends on the share of the product which will fall to the entrepreneur; and it is not true that the supply of labor depends on the share of the product which will fall to labour. (Keynes 1933c [1979]: 82– 83)”

    Tymoigne, Eric; Wray, L. Randall. The Rise and Fall of Money Manager Capitalism: Minsky’s half century from world war two to the great recession (Routledge Critical Studies in Finance and Stability) (pp. 15-16). Taylor and Francis. Kindle Edition.

    I’m not disputing your estimate of the Wisconsin workforce, I’m just not putting any faith in it until you provide a link.

    You wrote, “WI would need to import employers as a result.”

    19. How do you do that?

    You wrote, “my point is, it’s about how the state can drive job growth.”

    Government’s “job 1” is to create wealth.

    It comes from productivity improvements.

    Government’s “job 2” is to manage the three-legged stool: shareholders, workers, and consumers. If government does that, the wealth increases are fairly distributed. That’s why it’s called democratic capitalism. It’s “we the people” who decide what has economic value.

    You wrote, “Go back before your commercial for PIMCO to my remarks on jobs.”

    There are no commercials in this thread, but I’m sure UM will accept compensation for ad space.

  32. JPKMKE says:

    JC – You’re right. I must have been out of my mind to suggest that more private sector jobs are needed. I should have immediately acknowledged each of your 19 brilliantly assembled references of loosely-associated economic concepts and responded immediately with deference. Afterall, the principles of MMT and the demise of the balance sheet will save us all. It was disingenuous of me to not explain to you up front that my comments are not a defense of Walker. Perhaps if I had you would not feel the need to defend it by referencing articles quoting expert sources like Slate and Wired.

  33. Wisconsin Conservative Digest says:

    i was chair of the Economic Development committee in West Allis for years. The left has so much horse manure that I cringe when I read it.
    JPMKE has some brains.
    Foxconn is so important cause it breaks the message that Doyle got us into which was killing of Wisconsin as place to build.
    After we lost AC and then KC people looked down on us. Tommy brought us back , and then Doyle killed us.
    Foxconn and Amazon with the help of Walker have told people that Wisconsin is the place to go.
    if the Left got in what will they do? Raise taxes on businesses and their owners, Demagogue the rich. Raise min wage to the moon. Fail top fix the schools, crime, heroin epidemic, and what else. t
    Their platfrom are to Same sex bathrooms.
    JFK put man on moon and obama/Left put a man in the womens bathroom.

  34. John Casper says:


    20. Why after a five-day interval do you comment again in this thread, but still refuse to respond to my previous 19-questions?

    21. I can’t find any links in this thread to Slate or to Wired. Could point them out?

    22. You mentioned, “each of your 19 brilliantly assembled references of loosely-associated economic concepts.” Where are those?

    23. Where did Beardsley Ruml, former Chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, ever advocated the “demise of the balance sheet?”

    “(Federal) Taxes For Revenue Are Obsolete”

    24. WRT the private sector, what part of former PIMCO chief economist Paul McCulley’s “remember, the government sector’s liability is the private sector’s asset,” do you take issue with?

    You are the only person on this thread claiming you are “out” of your “mind.”

  35. John Casper says:

    WCD, you wrote, “i was chair of the Economic Development committee in West Allis for years.”

    Are you taking responsibility for the failures?

    Why not $3 billion to Harley-Davidson, or some corporation that isn’t jointly controlled by China and Taiwan?

    A half-hour before you commented, JPM wrote, “It was disingenuous of me to not explain to you up front that my comments are not a defense of Walker.”

    Still think he “has some brains?”

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