April 5, 2011

"Every state in America today except for two... has more government workers on the payroll than people manufacturing industrial goods."

Which 2?
Indiana and Wisconsin.

100 comments:

Triangle Man said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sofa King said...

And it's *barely* true for Wisconsin.

Triangle Man said...

Looking at the trends, the question is where did all of the manufacturing jobs go over the past decade? Government jobs growth has been very slow and steady, but manufacturing tanked.

Triangle Man said...

So my question, ladies and gentlemen, is when can we start shipping some of these government jobs overseas?

I see that Rush knows the answer to my question.

bagoh20 said...

It's what happens when Michael Moore wins.

What's amazing is that so many people think that this is a sustainable situation, business is the bad guy, and taxes are too low.

At least the environmentalists should change sides. Imagine all the trees dying to feed the machine that those millions of government workers are operating.

Almost Ali said...

Listen, the baby elephant in the right sidebar can only take so much. Enough abuse, BlogAds.

Lisa said...

I'm guessing that the same people who made a killing sending manufacturing overseas will now be using that statistic to justify demanding cuts in government spending so that they can cut their own taxes.

Sigh.

We need to bring back manufacturing and we need to fund our schools or we will slide into the dark ages.

MarkW said...

Big deal. In 1900, most people worked on farms. Another huge category for females at that time was 'domestic service'. Manufacturing output has not declined since 1960 -- we manufacture more stuff now with far fewer workers (just as we produce far more food now with far fewer farm workers and cook and clean our houses with machines rather than human labor). All of the above are good things.

But the massive expansion in government payrolls? THAT is not a good thing at all.

Triangle Man said...

I wonder if the government worker number (22.5 million) includes the military and civilian defense workers?

edutcher said...

But the best line is, "So my question, ladies and gentlemen, is when can we start shipping some of these government jobs overseas?"

Lisa said...

I'm guessing that the same people who made a killing sending manufacturing overseas will now be using that statistic to justify demanding cuts in government spending so that they can cut their own taxes.

Sigh.

We need to bring back manufacturing and we need to fund our schools or we will slide into the dark ages.


You want manufacturing, then start voting in fiscal Conservatives who will cut government bureaucracy, cut taxes, and get rid of all the regulations the Lefties have been piling on for 80 years. Listening to your Lefty pals is what's putting this country in the Dark Ages.

Another one that doesn't get it.

Almost Ali said...

Uh, are people just now figuring this out? That we have a massive make-work, anti-economy? That the government-worker parasites are now morphing into blowflies?

Well, every person eligible to vote should be required to sit on a DC street corner and count the luxury vehicles plundering by. Until they reach 100,000 - which usually takes about an hour.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Indiana is one.

John said...

While manufacturing jobs tanked, manufacturing has not. Or at least not so badly. We (the US)still make almost 20% of the world's manufactured goods.

That is only a point or two off from 1970.

What has changed is that we do it MUCH more productively requiring far fewer workers.

The workers that are required are no longer warm breathing bodies, for the most part. Those jobs, that still exist, have gone to where bodies can be hired cheaply.

The jobs that are left require people with skills to a much higher extent than in the past.

That is where all the manufacturing jobs went. They didn't "go" so much as become unnecessary.

Why do we never hear about all the farm jobs disappeared? Far more of those, in both absolute and percentage terms have disappeared over the past 100 years. Yet we grow more food than ever.

The Fordson tractor was one big reason.

As well as all the tractors that were manufactured in Milwaukee and other parts of Wisconsin.

John Henry

Hoosier Daddy said...

we need to fund our schools or we will slide into the dark ages.

In Indiana K-12 and higher education consumes 65% of our $14.5 billion budget and has grown on average 11% per year over the last decade.

Seems to me that funding isn't an issue for Indiana anyway. Appropriating those funds is another story I'll wager.

bagoh20 said...

"Looking at the trends, the question is where did all of the manufacturing jobs go over the past decade? Government jobs growth has been very slow and steady, but manufacturing tanked."

The size of the government includes the size of the effect of it's policies on manufacturing. It reached a tipping point in the 70s, when dealing with it overwhelmed dealing with other business challenges. It took a while and technology helped it accelerate recently, but for many, moving offshore was just the only solution to being the target of our good intentions.

It's somewhat reversible, but absolutely won't be fixed due to the education we have imparted to our people in the mean time, which has been a combination of misinformation, low standards, and ideological suicide.

As someone who has managed manufacturing companies all my adult life, I would say that the primary reason jobs left the U.S. is simply cost of employees. Relative to our competitors, we are spoiled rotten. We don't want to change it, and we don't want to pay more at the store. The enemy is us.

My company's only competition is in China, and we are successful, but my employees are underpaid by local standards and they work very hard, but we are succeeding, and even hiring right now. We can't ALL work for the government.

Hoosier Daddy said...

I challenge everyone to look at thier state budgets over the last several years and see if school funding has increased or decreased. When I see continuous increases in my state's education budget coupled with cries of not enough money to pay teachers etc etc, I have to wonder if there is some financial negligence occuring.

Sofa King said...

MarkW has a very good point.

Manufacturing output is still quite high. Until very recently, the U.S. had the largest manufacturing output, and it is still a close second (to China, natch.) There are two factors here however:

- The number of people required to perform all that manufacturing has fallen off a cliff. There is now so much automation and such an increase in productivity that even while manufacturing *production* has soared, manufacturing *jobs* have tanked.

- Manufacturing is a much smaller sector of the overall economy than it used to be. While it is has grown respectably, other segments have grown *more,* making manufacturing seem less by perspective.

Hoosier Daddy said...

I wonder if the government worker number (22.5 million) includes the military and civilian defense workers?

If their paycheck comes from the federal, state or local government the answer would be yes.

Christopher in MA said...

"We need to fund our schools or we will slide into the dark ages."

As you yourself said, Lisa - Sigh.

We DO fund "our" schools. We do nothing BUT throw money at them, for ever more decreasing results. "Funding our schools" means nothing more than ending up with well-paid child molestors.

Pastafarian said...

Triangle Man said: "Looking at the trends, the question is where did all of the manufacturing jobs go over the past decade? Government jobs growth has been very slow and steady, but manufacturing tanked."

It would appear as though you consider these two events (slow but steady growth of government, and the decline of manufacturing) to be independent of one another.

The IRS, OSHA, Dept of Labor, EEOC, EPA, etc., etc., have slowly, steadily assembled armies of people whose sole objective in life is to drive manufacturing out of this country.

They're winning. Duh, to quote Charlie Sheen. We reached the tipping point long ago.

themightypuck said...

Not all government employment is redistribution. A lot of government employees would be supported by all but the most die hard libertarians: cops, firemen, teachers (well maybe not teachers so much anymore), etc. What is true is that we live in a service economy and government's tend to provide services.

Hoosier Daddy said...

We DO fund "our" schools.

In 2000 the Indiana K-12 budget was $3,905 (millions). In 2011 it is 7,584 (millions).

I mentioned this to an acquaintance who is a school teacher and her retort was 'well, where is all the money going?' and I responded with 'good question. Ask your union leadership.'

Lisa said...

Christopher,

School funding is being cut across the board. And this idea that we are getting less for more is not true. Our schools are good. If you break our international test scores down, our kids in poverty are performing so badly that our average is brought down significantly. Our kids who do not qualify for lunch assistance perform top in the world.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

What is true is that we live in a service economy and government's tend to provide services.

And with a very small exception (police, fire, military, roads, airports) the services are neither wanted or required.

In most cases, education being the prime example, the services are expensive and SUBSTANDARD.

Pastafarian said...

Mark W and Sofa King, you're giving automation too much credit.

Our output, as measured in dollars of goods produced, is still quite high, but not in terms of number of units of any one thing in particular produced; it's just that each unit manufactured in the US is, on average, more expensive than it was before -- cheap things like cold-headed screws have been entirely offshored; we're left manufacturing only high-dollar items.

Automation has certainly helped productivity; but the maintenance of a steady volume of manufacturing in terms of gross revenue has resulted more from higher prices that include more engineering content than before, on average. Now, this isn't necessarily a bad thing.

But: If you look at the total number of people world-wide involved in manufacturing, I'm sure that you'll see a steady increase in this number, not a decrease. For every 100,000 manufacturing jobs lost here, there have been job increases in China, India, Vietnam, etc.

So, yes, we've lost manufacturing jobs to other countries. And no, we can't all be lawyers, and people who wait on lawyers at restaurants, and shine lawyers' shoes, and teach lawyers' children. Someone has to make, fix, grow, extract, and generate something. When you outsource all of those tasks, you become a nation of whores and leeches; and you put yourself at the mercy of those who actually make things.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

The IRS, OSHA, Dept of Labor, EEOC, EPA, etc., etc., have slowly, steadily assembled armies of people whose sole objective in life is to drive manufacturing out of this country.

Bingo!!

As anyone who has ever tried to assemble a business or build a house can attest, the government exists to prevent you from doing those things. They make it impossible to do business.

MarkW said...

The IRS, OSHA, Dept of Labor, EEOC, EPA, etc., etc., have slowly, steadily assembled armies of people whose sole objective in life is to drive manufacturing out of this country.

But this is just not true -- manufacturing has not been driven out. Manufacturing output is much higher now than it was 30 or 50 years ago. Manufacturing employment has declined, but that's a good thing. Manufacturing employment has even been declining in China as output has been growing (also a good thing -- and also for the same reason as in the U.S., namely, increased productivity).

Triangle Man said...

@Pastafarian

Your theory that government employment has lead to a decrease in manufacturing jobs is not as convincing as the other theory in the thread that increases in productivity through manufacturing technology has lead to a decrease in need for employees.

bagoh20 said...

My company's work is very labor intensive and mostly low skilled, yet we compete successfully with the Chinese, but not on price. We mostly succeed by having a niche of customers who are demanding about things other than price, combined with a ruthlessly cruel neutrality about overhead and nonessential costs. I've visited our competitors in Asia, and the higher ups have a work environment similar to here in the 60's, 70, & 80's - nice offices, lots of space, newest technology, spending freely (kinda like government work). It's all made possible there by paying people far less and getting much more from them in hours, combined with much lower expenses on regulations. They still have 3 martini lunches. You don't see that around here anymore.

themightypuck said...

As anyone who has ever tried to assemble a business or build a house can attest, the government exists to prevent you from doing those things. They make it impossible to do business.

This is true if by "prevent you from doing those things" you mean "wet its beak," and by "impossible" you mean "more costly."

madAsHell said...

I think Rush is playing fast-and-loose with manufacturing jobs. I'll bet software jobs don't count as manufacturing. What about agricultural jobs? I doubt aggie jobs are included in manufacturing. Aerospace jobs??...is that manufacturing?

I can't believe Boeing, and Microsoft are smaller than the state government.

Joe said...

How about high tech jobs in general? For all the touting of how important they are, most governments have done little to bring down the regulatory and tax costs of doing bueiness. It's not just federal; when I ran my own business, the two worse, most labor intensive, forms were the county property tax and the employment reports. Of course, I didn't even bother with my federal return, I hired an accountant to do that.

Expand this beyond government workers and add in workers who create nothing, but which you must hire because of the government. The amount of non-productive, non-revenue generating work lawyers do in this country as a group is astounding. But, the minefield of government regulation and taxation requires it.

Pastafarian said...

MarkW and Triangle Man: I run a manufacturing operation. Please don't hold back because you think I won't understand -- you tell me precisely what automation you think has caused us to be able to produce an equal number of 'widgets' today as we did 20 years ago, with a quarter of the people.

CNC machining? Parts can be more complex, and more accurately made, but these machines are actually slower than their cam-driven equivalents from years gone by for simple parts.

They've had Acme 6 and 8 spindles for a long, long time, guys.

Robotics? This saves some labor but doesn't improve through-put, and it's only a major factor in high-volume electronics (not much of which is done here anymore) and automotive. Again, there will be some improvement in productivity per man-hour, but not enough to explain the decrease we've seen in manufacturing employment.

Clue me in. Is there an underground factory of cyborgs somewhere that I don't know about, 100 feet below the Iowa cornfields, churning out all that stuff with those "Made in China" stickers just to throw us off the trail?

bagoh20 said...

"Your theory that government employment has lead to a decrease in manufacturing jobs is not as convincing as the other theory in the thread that increases in productivity through manufacturing technology has lead to a decrease in need for employees."

That does not explain the incredible growth in Asian manufacturing. If it's not needed, then what are all those people doing?

The truth is that the U.S. lost something it could have held on to. Our unskilled labor became wards of the state either working or not, and the increases in productivity have paid for it. In short, we wasted a huge opportunity, and we could really use it now.

Jay said...

and we need to fund our schools

The funding level for "schools" in America has never been higher.

Ever.

Lisa said...

Hoosier Daddy,

What happened since 2000 in education? NCLB.

Jay said...

Lisa said...
Christopher,

School funding is being cut across the board.


Um, no it is not.

You can't name a state, city, or county that is "cutting funding" in the United States.

Not one.

Joe said...

I can't believe Boeing, and Microsoft are smaller than the state government.

As of September 30, 2010 Microsoft had 88,414 employees worldwide, 53,735 in the US and 40,371 in Washington state.

Boeing employs about 159,000 people worldwide, 40,000-50,000 in the Seattle area.

As of February 2011, Washington State had 543,000 employees.

Sofa King said...

Clue me in.

ERP software, for example? Shit, Microsoft Excel has to be responsible for huge gains in productivity all by itself.

I'm not disputing the notion that government has pushed a lot of manufacturing jobs that *could* be here overseas, by the way. Worldwide demand for manufactured goods is exploding, and we're basically just skimming the top of it. But I do think it's important to be accurate, and it simply isn't true that all of the manufactured jobs have "left." Most of them simply disappeared.

Calypso Facto said...

But this is just not true -- manufacturing has not been driven out.

Manufacturing hasn't been driven out of the US...but manufacturing that requires PEOPLE has. OSHA, DOL, EEOC, IRS, SocSec, Medicare, and now Obamacare make the use of people to do manufacturing jobs uncompetitive with automation.

Lem said...

Indiana and Wisconsin..

What form do I need to fill to collect my prize?

(consider I live in NJ, I'm Hispanic, weight 160, was not born a cesarean and I eat meat)

Triangle Man said...

That does not explain the incredible growth in Asian manufacturing. If it's not needed, then what are all those people doing?

Isn't it that labor in Asia was much much cheaper. As technology improves and quality of life improves in Asia, won't jobs will be lost there too. Will Africa replace Asia? I'm very interested in your perspective on this.

Calypso Facto said...

Oh, and unions. Because of a broke union multi-employer pension fund, I can't hire any more employees at one site without potentially incurring literally millions of dollars of unfunded pension liability for each.

Christopher in MA said...

"School funding is being cut across the board."

This is a rough and dirty calculation, Lisa, but from what I can quickly dig up from the MA budget, we spent $7,851,865 on education in FY01. For FY10, the amount is $6,837,720. A decrease, yes, but about $1M over nine years is, frankly, chump change and hardly "across the board."

An anecdote - a couple of years ago, the North Andover school system demanded an increase in their budget. They claimed that without the money, at least 10 teachers would, sadly, have to be laid off. The voters called their bluff.

The teachers stayed. And the voters have kept North Andover's school budget on a goddamn tight leash ever since, as you might imagine. Once burned, twice shy.

Pastafarian said...

bagoh said: "That does not explain the incredible growth in Asian manufacturing. If it's not needed, then what are all those people doing?"

Exactly right, phrased more efficiently than I could have.

And MarkW and Triangle Man are confusing cause with effect, to a certain extent: A manufacturer that once employed 50 guys to produce 100 million screws per year that he'd sell for $10 million couldn't compete with China on price, given all the hoops we have to jump through, while the Chinese take their waste oil out and pour it into the canal out back.

So that American manufacturer either went out of business, or: He invested in automation, and specialized in the higher-priced screws. Now he employs only 10 guys to run this equipment to produce just 10 million screws; maybe he'll also import some captive washers from China. And he'll sell this higher-end stuff for $12 million.

So MarkW thinks this guy manufactures more, not less. In the meantime, those other 90 million screws are manufactured in China, and those 40 former employees work at Taco Taco, in "the service economy".

AJ Lynch said...

Hoosier:
I follow the state spending her in PA. In the last 8 years, it grew by 57% and the education portion of that grew by 53%.

And that is just the state portion- who the heck can track how much total education spending increased in those 8 years.

And of course the average PA taxperyers' income grew by 57% too [NOT].

Triangle Man said...

@Pastafarian

It's not that I don't believe you, and I will have to defer to your experience. I would be grateful if you could explain it in a way that someone who has not personally encountered the problems you have had can relate to.

The IRS, OSHA, Dept of Labor, EEOC, EPA, etc., etc., have slowly, steadily assembled armies of people whose sole objective in life is to drive manufacturing out of this country.

What does this mean?

John said...

Sofa King,

Are you sure we are #2 to China in manufacturing output?

I'd have to go back and look again but I remember looking into this late last year and seem to recall that we were still #1 when measured by value of output.

I thought Japan was #2 and China #3 but may well have them reversed.

John Henry

Pastafarian said...

Sofa King said: "ERP software, for example? Shit, Microsoft Excel has to be responsible for huge gains in productivity all by itself."

Really?

Excel? ERP? That's caused the displacement of millions of workers?

Uh huh.

(Actually, it's been my experience that ERP programs actually make more work than they save, but that's a topic for another day.)

"it simply isn't true that all of the manufactured jobs have "left.""

I never said "all", sofa. I said we'd reached the tipping point.

"Most of them simply disappeared."

And by some strange coincidence, a roughly equal number have magically appeared in China, and we see little "made in China" stickers on the bottom of everything that was once made here. But those jobs haven't "left".

Greg said...

I'm as much a fan of small government as anyone, but this meme is rather silly. Even without globalization, manufacturing would have tanked as an employer due to massively increased productivity and use of capital.

One odd fact: the world's biggest loser in net manufacturing jobs in the past 20 years is China itself, as ancient factories with 50 foot Mao statues and 100,000 workers have been replaced by modern, massively more productive plants with 5000 workers.

Pastafarian said...

Triangle Man: "What does this mean?"

It means that all of these enormous bureaucracies exist just to make my life shit, that's what it means.

Do you know what it costs to dispose of a barrel of used cutting fluid? Three or four times the cost of the original fluid.

Do you know what they do with that used cutting fluid in Ningbo province? Fertilizer for the rice paddies out back of the shop. At best, they burn it.

And here's the kicker: The place that disposes of our fluid just burns it in a big furnace, and bribes off the politicians to get permits to do it. Hell, they probably have a little "green" award hanging on the wall of their office.

And that's just one example. The Chinese don't worry about repetitive motion injuries, or hostile work environments, let alone getting sued for a million dollars because of it.

And that's really the crux of it: The Chinese have so many people in manufacturing because they have so few lawyers. There's an inverse relationship between these two employment numbers, I'm sure of it.

Of course, those lawyers live better than they would had they worked in a factory. Maybe when China realizes we can't repay our debts to them and the shit really hits the fan, and the "arsenal of democracy" has been outsourced to our enemy, we can serve them with papers, or write a scathing memo.

Skyler said...

This is why I decided to quit manufacturing engineering and become a lawyer.

edutcher said...

Lisa said...

Christopher,

School funding is being cut across the board. And this idea that we are getting less for more is not true. Our schools are good. If you break our international test scores down, our kids in poverty are performing so badly that our average is brought down significantly. Our kids who do not qualify for lunch assistance perform top in the world.


No, our schools are lousy and performance is around 40th in comparison to most developed countries.

As for poor kids, they're a product of that wonderful safety net the Demos are always touting.

Most of the funding being cut is for union teachers, not schools - that's what all the dancing in WI has been about the last month.

WV "gohors" What guys cheer when the hookers challenge the high school girls in nude beach volleyball.

John said...

I've worked in and with manufacturing since 1976.

I also have a Masters in Operations Management and have taught it as an adjunct pretty much continuously since 1982. So I have both some practical and theoretical background in manufacturing.

I had a business selling automation machinery from 1985 to 2007 and since 1998 to present have consulted and trained on lean manufacturing, specifically on a niche called changeover or SMED.

To answer a couple of commenters (Sorry I don't recall which ones, but they are in mfg)

Automation has been partly responsible for the productivity increases.

But "lean manufacturing" and generally improved running of operations (someone mentioned Excel and ERP and I concur) have also been responsible for much.

We think we got this from the Japanese with the Toyota Production System but few people realize that they took it directly from Henry Ford.

We are getting much higher utilization and much less waste of all types (Google "7 wastes" or "Tim Wood")

Less waste in all parts of the process are always going to result in higher productivity.

John Henry

Bob said...

For those decrying cuts in educational budgets have you looked at your enrollments? Many localities are experiencing decreases in the number of students. Where I use to live the school district closed one school and reduced one class per grade for each of the remaining schools. The city school district (that borders the other) has fought hard to close none of their schools because parents wanted "neighborhood schools". Guess which one has a significantly better graduation rate?

Calypso Facto said...

And some quick stats for Lisa:

Increase in US student enrollment since 1970: 10%
Increase in US education employment since 1970: 100%
Increase in US education inflation-adjusted spending per student since 1970 (K-12):275%
Change in US test scores since 1970: Math:0 Reading: 0 Science: -5%

I think public education is a WONDERFUL thing. But underfunded, it isn't.

John said...

A while back Craig Newmark of Newmark's Door blog linked to a story about sock manufacturing in North Carolina. The owner of one manufacturing plant was complaining that while he could compete on the automated part of sockmaking, he could not compete with Honduras on the manual toe sewing. Labor costs in the US were just too high.

In addition to complaining, he wound up inventing a machine to automate toe closing and competes very nicely now, thankyouverymuch.

He was just a dumb sewing machine mechanic who had started out with a couple of used machines and now employs a couple hundred people.

He was too dumb to know all the reasons why the toe sewing could never be automated.

And cold-blooded enough to know that if he didn't, his profits would go away.

(And that cold-blooded focus on profits keeps his hundreds of employees working. Mean spirited bastard.)

John Henry

I know a number of other similar examples from direct personal experience

Carol_Herman said...

Are they including the DMV and the Post Office in this count?

And, manufacturing jobs went overseas. Turns out LBJ built Vietnam a deep port. And, the military sent things over inside containers.

The longshoremen in the USA, at the "old ports" wouldn't unload container ships. So, now these piers are home to restaurants. And, other states dug out big ports. Go look at a map! See all of our coastline? Both sides!

LBJ's actions had consequences.

Now? Well, Japan, (because of "inventory rules" set by the IRS), found it cheaper to supply plants with "just in time" deliveries.

Now? Business suffers.

No. Calling a state agency won't relieve this problem.

But manufacturing jobs? The unions killed them in states that had unions. As a matter of fact, Walmart's got started by selling "MADE IN THE USA" labels on all their garments. And, that, too, went the way of the wind.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Hoosier Daddy,

What happened since 2000 in education? NCLB.


What is your point? My point is that education spending in Indiana has increased every single year. Every. Single. Year.

John said...

Pastafarian,

You scoff at Excel but how many accounting clerk jobs have disappeared because of it?

How many secretarial clerk/typist jobs has Microsoft Word killed?

How productive was it for a manager to handwrite or dictate a memo, pass it to a typist, get it back for corrections, have it retyped from scratch, review it again, have the secretary copy it and file it, send it to someone else who then had their secretary type a reply and file both

And so on.

By which point it had taken so long that the info might be out dated anyway.

Those are jobs that no longer exist. Not shipped overseas but made unnecessary by software.

The improved speed of communication as well as the reduced need for people and backing and forthing has by itself resulted in huge gains.

John Henry

AJ Lynch said...

I believe our manufacturing industry has been decimated by foreign countries giving huge financial subsidies to their own companies.

For instance, I am skeptical they can make and ship tons of steel here cheaper than we can make ourselves.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Indy Star has an article about how Indianapolis Public Schools is going to lay off 271 teachers and staff. Main reason cited in the article?

Lack of enrollment and overstaffing.

Sofa King said...

How many secretarial clerk/typist jobs has Microsoft Word killed?

On the industrial side, look how many drafting, drawing, and filing jobs Autocad has killed.

AJ Lynch said...

Hoosier:
Enrollment droping? I am not surprised- any parent with half a brain is fleeing the big city school districts.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Hoosier:
Enrollment droping? I am not surprised- any parent with half a brain is fleeing the big city school districts.


Thats what the article said. Even better was mentioned that union rules meant that layoffs will hit those with the least senority so those with 2-5 years will be gone (obviously without regard to their skill, talent or contributions).

AJ Lynch said...

I would be interested in hearing the comments of any here who can explain to me how it is less costly to use foreign steel than domestic steel. I would think shipping costs alone would level the playing field.

Oclarki said...

Lisa,

Let's just kick all those poor kids out of school. What a waste of resources.

E.M. Davis said...

Bring back manufacturing?

Horse, barn door.

enicar333 said...

It gets even better, as it gets worse. Inflation is raging and the Fed is forced to monetize the debt because no one wants US Treasurys. The price of crude and the implications of Peak Oil means the double dip is actually a world-wide recession. Today: Silver @39.13/ Gold @ 1452.50/ WTI @107.91/ Brent @ 122 and Asian Tapis @ 126.60. No recovery possible with crude in those ranges.


For a light-hearted note of hilarity watch as a CIA analyst tells the TRUTH on national TV and says the Libyan war is for oil, America is bankrupt, and the media is carrying the water for Obama. LOL. http://www.zerohedge.com/article/former-cia-analyst-tells-truth-about-libya-intervention-cnn-hilarity-ensues

As the budget battle looms once again Turbo-Tax Timmay makes his threats to avert a government shutdown. See what Turbo-Timmay says will happen if the debt ceiling is not raised.
http://www.treasury.gov/connect/blog/Pages/letter-to-congress.aspx

madAsHell said...

Ouch!!
543,000 employed by the state?!?
That's the number of people that live within the Seattle city limits!!

Hagar said...

An essential thing everybody needs to realize is that government employees' paychecks are overhead costs on the community as a whole.
Some overhead is necessary, just think of your own firm, but it is elementary that a firm that loads up on non-productive overhead is not going to prosper.

madAsHell said...

I'm looking at:
http://www.ofm.wa.gov/forecasting/faq.asp

The Washington state web site says 112,546 FTE. They do not count K-12 teachers.

ricpic said...

...we need to fund our schools or we will slide into the dark ages.

Our schools are the dark ages.

enicar333 said...

Link to Wisconsin debt clock. Looks like we have revenue of 38B, but spend 59B. Debt comes out to $7,709 per person. Population of 5,716.122; unemployed at 238,710 and the number on SNAP at 831,008.
http://www.usdebtclock.org/state-debt-clocks/state-of-wisconsin-debt-clock.html

hawkeyedjb said...

One of the most successful things the education industry has done is to get people like Lisa to say (and sometimes actually believe) that "school funding is being cut across the board." There are some isolated instances of slight reductions in the rate of increase in school spending, but any such 'cuts' must be put in the context of 50 years of increasing funding. Yes, by every measure (absolute dollars, dollars per student, inflation-adjusted dollars) school spending has increased massively over the last half-century. Now any little pause in the rate of increase is posited as a 'cut.' It's as if I complained about my recent pay cut, bemoaning my poverty, when in fact my income has been increasing steadily for the last 40 years.

Which of these do you agree with?

1) The US spends more - in some cases enormously more- than any other industrial society on health care, with results that are often no better, and sometimes worse, than in other societies that spend far less. Therefore we should spend even more on healthcare.

2)The US spends more - in some cases enormously more- than any other industrial society on education, with results that are often no better, and sometimes worse, than in other societies that spend far less. Therefore we should spend even more on education.

Phil 3:14 said...

Calypso;
Increase in US student enrollment since 1970: 10%
Increase in US education employment since 1970: 100%
Increase in US education inflation-adjusted spending per student since 1970 (K-12):275%
Change in US test scores since 1970: Math:0 Reading: 0 Science: -5%


Yes, but imagine how bad it would have been if we hadn't spent all of that money!

The Grand Inquisitor said...

"We need to bring back manufacturing and we need to fund our schools or we will slide into the dark ages. "

We can't bring back manufacturing without lower taxes and less regulation.

And giving teachers a raise is not helpful. Cut the bloated education spending. It's not going to lead to the dark ages at all. It's time to eliminate all the indoctrination in schools, and fire all the inferior teachers, and eliminate all teacher unionization to accomplish both.

Just make sure kids learn how to read and write and do math, and then offer hard science and advanced math and require all high school graduates to learn a skill.

themightypuck said...

The problem with school spending is that it doesn't really track performance. The reality is that the people who really benefit from great teachers are the poor--the rich will do fine on their own. If teachers really made a difference in performance they would get paid. The reason teachers make so little is that the difference in chance to attend Harvard between top 5% dude with shitty teachers and top 5% dude with good teachers is almost non-existent. Compare this with Quarterbacks. Difference in chance to win Superbowl with best QB in the world vs different in chance to win Superbowl with 20th best QB in the world? Enormous.

Calypso Facto said...

You've been reading your stimulus spending reports, Phil!

Oh, and one more thing about manufacturing leaving the US: our world-highest corporate taxes probably don't help either.

Trooper York said...

I am probably the only person who posts here who actually manufactures something here in the United States. Namely women's clothing in plus sizes.

I deal with several factories here in the United States where we make our own private label. Although we are very small we were approached by some overseas interests to manufacture in the Orient. I would save somewhere between eight and twelve dollars a garment if I did so. There are many reasons why I do not opt to go off shore. First of all they require a much greater volume than I will currently need to produce. But that can be finessed sometimes. Second of all when it goes to China or Korea or India or Indonesia they do what ever they want with the patterns. If there is a question they don't ask you what to do….they just do with they want and send it back to you and you are stuck with it. I mean what are you going to do? Argue with the owners of the factory? That's the fuckin Chinese Army.

But the main reason I don't go off shore is I am AMERICAN!!!!! I want to keep it here in the US OF A. And many of my customers agree. They like to buy American. They scorn labels that don't. If more of you did the same then things might change. You might play slightly more but you would be supporting American Manufacturers and the illegal immigrant labor that we employ.

So stop buying that cheap shit in Wal-Mart and dig a little deeper!

That is if you mean what you say about wanting to change this situation.

Otherwise it is all a big bag of bullshit.

Trooper York said...

If you want to see any of this great ALL AMERICAN FASHION, it will be on display tonight
April 5th on TLC'S What Not TO Wear
at 9pm EST.

Carly from New Jersey will be purchasing some of our ALL AMERICAN CLOTHING!!!!!!!!!!!

Read all about it!

LarsPorsena said...

Trooper:

I'll be tuning in. Haven't they patronized your place before?

Trooper York said...

This is our 19th time on the show.

Anytime somebody is bigger than a size 12 they come by.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

Jay,

You can't name a state, city, or county that is "cutting funding" in the United States.

Sure I can. My husband is a public school teacher in OR, and we are looking at anywhere from 12% to 23% funding cuts (statewide) for next year. Actual cuts, not reductions in increases. There is a deep budgetary hole. My impression from the discussions I've heard is that they are trying their damndest not to lay off teachers, but that that might mean teachers (say) taking on the work of laid-off janitorial staff, at no extra pay.

DADvocate said...

The not-so Golden State now has an incredible 2.4 million government employees

That's a huge number, but when you consider schools, colleges, state, county and city governments (maybe federal workers are counted too) it's more of a few too many here and there sort of thing. Basically, we have government trying to do too much.

chuckR said...

Trooper

I'd be glad to buy American. Just about the only thing I buy now that is reliably American is shoes - made in Wisconsin at that. I find it damned hard to find US made clothing, at least for business casual and straight casual.

wv - phoent - an otolaryngologist impersonator

Trooper York said...

American made clothes are out there. You just have to look for them.

They generally labeled as such.

Recently I tried to buy a coffee mug. I wanted to buy American. I went through fifty mugs and forty nine of them were made in China. One was made in France.

Howze that for bullshit.

MarkW said...

So MarkW thinks this guy manufactures more, not less. In the meantime, those other 90 million screws are manufactured in China, and those 40 former employees work at Taco Taco, in "the service economy".

Let's not be simpleminded about this. The output of American manufacturers has grown substantially since, say, 1970. But that doesn't mean the same firms are producing the same stuff only now with less labor.

In general, we don't do low-end, labor-intensive manufacturing here anymore. But we produce a lot of autos and auto-parts, semi-conductors, aircraft, earth-moving equipment, pharmaceuticals and medical devices, robots for factory automation, etc. And it all adds up to more than what we produced 40 years ago.

Phil 3:14 said...

Trooper;
If you want to see any of this great ALL AMERICAN FASHION, it will be on display tonight
April 5th on TLC'S What Not TO Wear
at 9pm EST.


I'm a faithful watcher of WNTW (even though I'm not their demographic)

How come we never get to see your lovely mug on the show?

Trooper York said...

They never have the store owners on. Stacy and Clinton wanted to put my wife on a couple of times but the producers nixed.

I am usually in the back room with the crew while the filming is going on. I put out a big spread of donuts, bagels, eggplant and meatball sandwiches and what not.

That's why they lobby to come to us all of the time. Well one of the reasons.

It's really all about the clothes.

Trooper York said...

Carly the subject picked some of best pieces. She looks like a knock out in our wrap dresses. Just sayn'

Revenant said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Revenant said...

'm guessing that the same people who made a killing sending manufacturing overseas will now be using that statistic to justify demanding cuts in government spending so that they can cut their own taxes.

High taxes and onerous government regulations are two of the main reasons jobs wind up moving to other cities, states, or countries.

The government says, in essence, "we need to hire people whose job it will be to make it harder for you to do business. So give us your money, so we can pay them". For fairly obvious reasons that's not an attractive offer to anyone except government employees. "Come to our city/state/country -- we've got low taxes and lax regulation", on the other hand, is a very tempting offer.

We need to bring back manufacturing and we need to fund our schools or we will slide into the dark ages.

Our schools are well funded. Besides, how would giving more money to the same people who currently do a bad job cause the quality of education to improve?

It might cause the quality of education to improve if we sacked the current crop of teachers and used the funding increase to hire better ones. But we all know that will never happen.

Frank McArdle said...

Manufacturing in the United States has suffered much over the last five decades. It suffered first from those who thought that it could be treated for tax purposes as a cash cow. So depreciation schedules were changed and tax rates increased at state,local, and federal levels in traditional manufacturing areas.

The we added the environmental rules,ones that drove up costs in heavy manufacturing. Foundries could not compete with offshore firms that did not have the same compliance costs, for example. Well before China entered the WTO,India was supplying New York City with street castings and the plating industries had moved to friendlier climes.

Finally manufacturing and agriculture ran into the no-growthers in the progressive wing of the Democratic party, who make a fetish of cutting down on the growth in these two areas. The impacts on working class people are of little concern to them.

We really need to change the rules of the game before we will see the growth of manufacturing here. We should be looking to Germany as the model,since they seem to have been able to keep a strong export manufacturing sector.

Skippy said...

Does anyone think that poverty and the huge number of immigrants, many of them from cultures that do not give a damn about education, have anything to do with the state of learning and education today? Have any of these folks who say such vile things about teachers actually been in a classroom and seen the disrespect and lack of interest in learning -- in fact, the mockery that is made of students who do want to learn something? How about the rich parents who pull their kids out of school to go on vacations at any time, the homework never done, the tests never studied for by so many of our American students? The emphasis on sports at all costs; the hours and driving and money parents will spend on their children's sports and not a bit of time or attention to reading and learning?

Sack all the teachers, Revenant? And where are these miracle workers who will magically transform public education come from? Are you one of them? There's a story in the LA Times this week about the fall-off in people enrolling in teaching programs in part because of the job cuts. Why aren't you already teaching if it's such an easy, overpaid, cushy job? What's holding you back?

Robert Cook said...

"We need to bring back manufacturing and we need to fund our schools or we will slide into the dark ages."

Too late. We're already there.

bagoh20 said...

Look around your room right now. Is there anything...anything made in the U.S.A? I mean besides your own paper pushing, keyboard pounding ass. Now tell me how we make plenty of stuff here. Maybe we make a lot of cloaking devices.

AST said...

When did it become progress for workers to price themselves out of the market? If we were all unionized, none of us could afford to live here.

Don't Tread 2012 said...

Doesn't matter which 2.

Tax and spend, big government-worshipping liberals must be defeated in the arena of ideas and at the ballot box.

Period.

Antioco Dascalon said...

M. Thomson: where are you getting your information?
Oregon schools budget to remain the same under proposed budget: http://www.oregonlive.com/politics/index.ssf/2011/03/schools_come_out_even_health_c.html

As for the canard that we are not spending enough on schools, need I remind you of the $600 million school build in LA: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703959704575454013855538920.html

Or for a real eye-opener, read about the school district that did all the "right" things (decreased class size, new facilities, increased teacher pay) but saw no improvement: http://www.cato.org/pubs/pas/pa-298.html
We have empirical proof that more money is not the answer. Teachers' unions help teachers, not students.