Teapublicans blame everyone and anyone but themselves, even though they have no bases for their accusations. Needless to say, some of their accusations go to the point of being absurd.
M. Kevin McGee, an economics professor at the University of Wisconsin - Oshkosh, has a column in the paper that analyzes the situation and comes to the same conclusion that we knew it was all along - the devastation caused by Act 10:
The only explanation that fits the data involves consumer spending. Under Gov. Jim Doyle, state workers absorbed pay cuts in the form of temporary furloughs. According to Milton Friedman's permanent income hypothesis, those furloughs would reduce consumer spending only a little. Under Gov. Scott Walker, the furloughs were replaced by significant permanent pay cuts, in the form of higher pension and insurance contributions. By the permanent income hypothesis, those cuts would reduce spending nearly dollar for dollar.This is the biggest factor in the gubernatorial race because Act 10 did more than heavily damage the economy and subsequently the job market. By weakening the unions, it made it easier for the Teapublicans to impose the ALEC-based laws that have diminished women's rights, increased voter suppression, left the environment vulnerable to exploitation and gutted consumer protection laws.
In addition, fiscal limits on cities and counties spread those pay cuts to local public employees as well. And at the same time, there were significant permanent decreases in private-sector wages, often also in the form of wage and benefit concessions.
So well over 400,000 Wisconsin workers were forced to cut their spending significantly. Some of that reduced spending would have been on goods produced elsewhere — Detroit automobiles, foreign-made electronics, California wine — reducing job growth elsewhere.
But much of that reduced spending would have been on locally produced services — restaurant meals, trips to the Dells and hair salon appointments — reducing job growth in Wisconsin. That's where the job gap shows up — in about 30,000 fewer private service-sector jobs than expected, over the past three years.
The biggest step to repairing our state would be the repeal of Act 10. Sad to say, neither major party - the Teapublican or the Republicratic - candidate has expressed an interest in making this fix.