Boots & Sabers

The blogging will continue until morale improves...


Everything but tech support.

0839, 17 Jul 17

New Business and Jobs are Bad

This has to be one of the stupidest editorials I’ve read in a long time.

The sudden influx of 10,000 jobs in Janesville could only be a good thing, right?

Not necessarily.

News of Foxconn considering and then passing up Janesville as the site of a $10 billion expansion project might have left some people feeling disappointed. But we know from experience the pitfalls of allowing one company and industry to dominate the local economy.

The GM plant closing happened not even 10 years ago. Let’s not forget with its closing came the sucking sound of hundreds of people’s livelihoods disappearing. When a community relies on a big employer, its fortunes rise and fall with that employer, too. The car industry is notoriously cyclical, and Janesville endured many ups and downs through the years before the bottom finally fell out in 2008.


Sure, we’re puckering a little, here, from sour grapes, but winning 10,000 Foxconn jobs wouldn’t be a perpetual party for the economy. It would come with a hangover.

Their argument is basically that having a business open in town and create thousands of jobs is a bad thing because that company may leave one day and the jobs will go with it. In their view, unemployment is better because at least that can be perpetual.

What they ignore is the fact that GM created jobs, employment, and a good lifestyle for thousands of people for generations in Janesville. Yes, they eventually left and Janesville misses GM, but they are taking the wrong lesson from that experience. The lesson is that the city must diversify its economy to mitigate the negative effects of business closings. The lesson is NOT that they should eschew big businesses moving to town unless the business can guarantee that jobs will last for eternity.


0839, 17 July 2017


  1. billphoto

    While GM did many good things for the community, (and please correct me if I am wrong) I am told this was an old plant.  GM’s decision was financial given the cost to upgrade and the lack of local talent to support any upgrade investment.  As GM evolved, the Janesville labor pool did not which is something that Janesville’s leadership should have seen coming.  Also, I don’t see any mention of the impact of the United Auto Workers.  The UAW labor cartel may have protected those with jobs at Generous Motors but over time, unions destroy jobs in the companies they organize and retard economic growth.  Considering GM’s total hourly labor costs with benefits is about $69, while Toyota’s is about $48, it would make economic sense to move elsewhere.

  2. Kevin Scheunemann

    Liberals in Janesville:

    “Scott walker: we have too many jobs, we can’t handle all prosperity you have brought us.”

    I like it when liberals are complaining Walker’s plans are too prosperous.

    Sure beats the job destroying policies of Doyle!

  3. Rep Bob Gannon

    If Wisconsin keeps growing our business base there’s a chance that the poverty industry will be negatively impacted. This scares the heck out of liberals, because when the citizens enjoy individual economic success there’s a good chance they’ll forever leave the big government womb.

  4. kjanz1899

    If Janesville doesn’t want the jobs then Foxconn should head over to Racine County.

Pin It on Pinterest