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Bob McLaughlin: Government creates, supports many jobs
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Bob McLaughlin: Government creates, supports many jobs

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The first sentence of the first item on the State Journal 2012 agenda "Improve economic competitiveness" reads: "Government doesn't create jobs." This is a statement also frequently spouted by anti-government right-wingers of all types.

By what definition of "job creation" is this true? Certainly the government (state and federal) does not actually hire and compensate private sector employees, but does any clear-thinking, honest person think the government doesn't create jobs?

If the government does not create jobs, then why did Republicans such as Scott Walker and Ron Johnson make job creation pillars of their campaigns for government jobs? Why did the Walker regime throw $4 million at Spectrum Brands and give Shopko $2 million in tax credits under the guise of job creation or retention?

If a job would not exist without government assistance (through low interest loans, building and maintaining infrastructure and education), then that is job creation.

Perhaps the right wing (and right-leaning editorial boards) just want to minimize the importance of a representative government so they can shrink it to the point where they can maximize profits without regard to the consequences to citizens and the environment.

— Bob McLaughlin, Madison

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