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Even If It Were True, It Wouldn’t Be A Bad Thing

Posted by Chris Liebenthal on January 1, 2011

We all know how the right wing, spurred on by their puppet masters at WMC, have been attacking public sector workers. One of the more recent charges that was supposedly one of the signs of the apacolypse or something was that there were more public sector workers than private sector.

What they don’t tell you is that the bulk of those workers include teachers, firefighters and police officers.
But there are other things that they don’t tell you either, but Milwaukee News Buzz does:

The study from the Council on Children and Families (using seasonally adjusted jobs data) found that between November 2009 and October 2010, manufacturing jobs outnumbered government ones in seven out of 12 months. This is the sort of data that alarmed the Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commercein late 2009 when government positions first exceeded those in manufacturing.

“This is a very disturbing development,” WMC vice-president of government relations James Buchen said in December 2009. “An economy that has more government jobs than manufacturing jobs cannot be sustained for the long-term … Wisconsin needs to turn this trend around quickly.”

The Council argues that this concern – echoed by Republican candidate Leah Vukmir this fall in her successful race to win the state senate seat representing Wauwatosa – is overblown since the vast majority of states have, for decades, had more government than manufacturing jobs. And in the first 10 months of this year, only two states, Wisconsin and Indiana, averaged about a 1 to 1 balance between these two employment sectors.

If this balance “is a useful gauge of a state’s economic vitality, then we should all celebrate the fact that Wisconsin is #1 and is far above most other states,” the Council’s paper remarks. The national average, it says, was slightly less than two government jobs for every manufacturing job.


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