The Mercantilist

Veronique de Rugy contends that one should take Trump at his word on trade.  It’s doubtful that anyone should take Trump’s word for anything, but that’s too literal a reading of her claim.  She’s right that, in effect, Trump truly opposes free trade no matter what he says: As we embark on a trade war, let’s […]

Foxconn’s Bait & Switch

It’s a groundbreaking ceremony for (a much smaller) Foxconn today.  This very morning one reads confirmation – yet again – that taxpayers’ billions for Foxconn are paying for a project that’s now a giant bait & switch. Rick Romell reports Foxconn scales back plans for its first factory in Mount Pleasant: The Foxconn Technology Group manufacturing […]

Foxconn’s Shabby Workplace Conditions

One reads that God, hearing the grumblings of the ancient Israelite community, once fed that people: 11 The LORD said to Moses: 12 I have heard the grumbling of the Israelites. Tell them: In the evening twilight you will eat meat, and in the morning you will have your fill of bread, and then you will know that I, […]

Foxconn’s Ambition is Automation, While Appeasing the Politically Ambitious

If there’s ever been an economic con, it’s Foxconn in Wisconsin. The Financial Times describes two key aspects of Foxconn’s character, in a story, Foxconn shifts focus to ‘smart manufacturing.’ Automation, Not Jobs. The new reporting tells us that Foxconn’s working for “automating other manufacturers’ processes.”  Of course they are: they’ve a whole business producing robots […]

Coerced Beauty Isn’t Beautiful

  For a thousand years, some men in China insisted that a woman wasn’t beautiful, desirable, and worthy unless her feet had been bound into an unnatural and distorted form. Rather than allow women to develop normally, these men insisted that their own imposed desires were superior to the natural feminine form.  The price of […]

Two Truths of Whitewater’s Economy

  There are two truths of Whitewater’s economy, each fundamental and each a refutation to the last generation’s myth-making. For today, it’s enough to list the two fundamental truths.   Large Public Projects Haven’t Overcome Weak Household-Income Levels in Whitewater. This is true both in aggregate, and for age brackets (children, adults 35-64) not representative […]

About that Trump Tax Plan

In Whitewater, by press release (twice), one can read about the supposed benefits of the Trump tax plan. The Whitewater Community Development Authority’s executive director, Dave Carlson, was quick to push a portion of the plan as good for Whitewater. In doing so, he conceded what anyone observing Whitewater with care and concern already knew: […]

Whitewater Listed as the Poorest City in Wisconsin

Samuel Stebbins and Michael B. Sauter, from 24/7 Wall Street, report Which town in your state is the poorest? Here is the list @ Gannett’s USA Today. For Wisconsin, they contend it’s Whitewater: Town median household income: $30,934 State median household income: $54,610 Town poverty rate: 38.2% Town population: 14,840 Whitewater has both the lowest median household income and the […]

Another Pig at the Trough

Jason Stein and Rick Romell report Foxconn: Glass maker could want hundreds of millions of dollars to locate alongside massive Wisconsin factory: To locate in Wisconsin, a key glass supplier to Foxconn wants financial help from the Taiwanese electronics giant or state taxpayers that could run into the hundreds of millions of dollars. … Corning […]

The Price of Trumpism is Ruin

Craig Gilbert looks at the careers of Priebus, Ryan, and Walker: They led the “Cheesehead Revolution,” the GOP’s audacious conquest of Wisconsin. They offered a model for bridging Republican frictions between establishment and base. They became national figures. They ran into Donald Trump. They suffered. They bent to his rise. Now one (Priebus) has left […]

A Sham News Story on Foxconn

About a month ago, a local business lobbying group in Whitewater invited an operative of the Walker Administration to the city to talk about Foxconn. The nearby Jefferson County Daily Union sent a stringer to cover the presentation. See Foxconn impact outlined in Whitewater. In the 38-paragraph story, the paper simply reproduces – without the […]

Foxconn as Alchemy: Magic Multipliers

The Foxconn plant isn’t even built yet, but the Walker Admin and its allies (including a few local apologists for corporate welfare in Whitewater) now resort to fantastic, magical claims about how much economic development will come from nearly four billion in taxpayer subsidies. So magical, so fantastic, that they now claim an 18-1 multiplier […]

Foxconn Devours Tens of Millions from State’s Road Repair Budget

Foxconn has been much touted in Whitewater, with the local business lobby bringing in a longtime political operative to flack the project at a local restaurant. One now reads that Foxconn is devouring funds needed for communities’ road repairs: A new road project serving the $10 billion Foxconn plant in Racine County could reduce funding […]