JG Excerpt:Norwood Promotional Products is the first casualty in Janesville of the new certainty ushered in by the statewide romp of republicans in November. Company execs claim that an "analysis" showed moving the operation out of Janesville would improve customer experience and streamline operational capabilities. In our new world of global free-market capitalism, that's just a safe way to say "creative destruction."
JANESVILLE--A Janesville manufacturer of promotional products will close its doors in April, eliminating about 75 jobs. Employees of Norwood Promotional Products, 1309 Plainfield Ave., learned of the decision Wednesday to move local operations to a facility in Red Wing, Minn.
They (the local establishment and media) could pretend the loss of 75 jobs doesn't mean much here, after all what's another 75 jobs after losing 3,500 regional jobs from the closing of the GM plant. They could say the handwriting was on the wall for Norwood after filing bankruptcy back in 2009. But make no mistake about it, small to medium sized companies like Norwood are what's left of the backbone of the Janesville/Rock County economy. Unlike fast food restaurants and Janesville's Mercy hospital, these small manufacturing businesses are not merely recirculating the area's wealth - their payrolls actually bring in much needed fresh added capital. Psychologically, it's devastating and I fear Janesville hasn't seen the end of it.
So let's cut to chase. Norwood resides in Rep. Paul Ryan's congressional district. Why does this matter? Well, because he repeatedly won awards for legislating manufacturing excellence from an outfit called the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM). So, how is it when a congressman voting NAM's way over 90 percent in near perfect alignment with his votes on his party's legislative successes from 2000 through 2006, resulted in a precipitous decline of the once robust manufacturing industry within his own district? Hey, don't look to blame democrats - most did not win those prestigious manufacturing awards because they voted against many of the GOP's trade and business policies. Besides, government doesn't create jobs and democrats are socialists is the current winning narrative. Clearly then, today's joblessness is a direct product of past republican policies that all but outlawed manufacturing on American soil.
Let's not forget Gov.-elect Scott Walker either. In a recent editorial, the Chicago Tribune touted him as a governor who is prepared to steal jobs from other states. Really. Good luck with that one. "Wisconsin's open for business!" was one of Walker's first hollow platitudes after winning the election. He'll create and save jobs, by gum. Perhaps Walker could order Norwood to delay shutting their doors until after he is sworn in, so he can fully evaluate their decision and it's effect on the state. Do I sound bitter here?
Yet, Walker and Ryan are merely the tip of the future "certainty" iceberg here in Wisconsin. Norwood also resides in soon to be former Assembly Speaker Mike Sheridan's district, but he's a democrat and we all know democrats don't create jobs. He was defeated by job creator extra-ordinaire republican Joe Knilans who promised to bring jobs back to Janesville. During his campaign, he accused Sheridan in failing to bring new production to the GM plant. Surely, Knilans can protect a measly 75 manufacturing jobs then, right? So, what's Knilans doing about Norwood? Can't wait to hear about it. Do I sound bitter here?
Oh, and we can't forget Ron Johnson. Where is that crown jewel of a businessman-turned-senator? That's Mister 30-year-successful-small-businessman-job-creator himself. Heck, if he walked through the doors of Norwood right now everybody would have to put on sunglasses before being permitted to bask in his awesome presence. You know, the Janesville Gazette editorialized against Russ Feingold by claiming he never did much for Janesville. Hear that Sen. Johnson? Now's your chance to step up in Janesville and show what you can do what Feingold failed to. Do I sound bitter here?
So, where are all those tax cutting republican promise-keepers of jobs?
Yet, where is the all powerful local lobbyist group Forward Janesville on this? What about the big-shot business experts of the much ballyhooed Rock County 5.0? You know full well too, that if those local groups happen to "woo" a new business into Janesville someday - the Gazette won't let you, I or anybody forget about it for the rest of our lives. Be prepared for that one.
Hey, I'm not saying it's easy - but these are the folks pushing to deficit spend $1.5 billion for an interstate expansion on a growing population of jobless taxpayers. THEY sure made it sound like job creation is easy if only we can bring certainty back and get rid of those damn socialist democrats. They made it sound like democrats were anti-business and did everything wrong and created too much future uncertainty while Republicans claimed they will reverse that direction.
So I'm not bitter - I'm just waiting for all of these republicans to do what they claimed democrats failed to do - and start saving and creating jobs. This isn't a dare - I'm only reminding you of your promises and asking that you keep them.
Ryan's Hometown Among Worst On Forbes List For Jobs
Ryan Wins Another NAM Award