Thursday, August 14, 2014

So Where Are the Jobs? Michigan Unemployment Increases in July.

Governor Snyder got just about everything he wanted to make Michigan the jobs mecca of America - a $1.8-billion tax cut, "right-to-work" laws designed to gut unions, reduced regulations so corporations can more easily exploit our natural resources. And earlier this month he got another business tax cut, this time a $500-million gift to business through repeal of the personal property tax.

So we should be rockin', right? Not so fast, my friend. Michigan still has one of the worst unemployment rates in the nation, and the number actually inched up last month even as the national unemployment rate held steady.

As regular readers of my Facebook page know, I have long advocated Michigan look to the economic leader in the Midwest -- Minnesota -- for some clues on how to grow an economy. We don't have the July numbers yet, but in June the Land of 10,000 Lakes had an unemployment one-third lower than Michigan.

How does Minnesota do it? Rather than slash programs to pay for massive business tax cuts, Minnesota invests in itself.

Michigan should look to the Governor who recognized that, in order to prosper, we need to invest in education, infrastructure and basic government services ... and need to pay for those services. He doubled the state budget in just five years. He pushed through the state income tax to pay the bills. His name was George W. Romney.

(George Romney was also outspokenly pro-choice, pushed hard to enact civil rights legislation, and worked to create bipartisan coalitions within state government - things Mitt apparently has forgotten. When George Romney resigned to join the Nixon cabinet, he turned the reigns over to William Milliken who built on the Romney legacy by becoming a national leader in environmental advocacy.)

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