Earlier this month I asked where Governor Scott Walker was on tariffs that were having a negative impact on businesses in that great state Open for Business Wisconsin: Where Is Governor Walker On Tariffs And International Trade? There were several articles linked and quoted in my blog post, but one in particular bears calling out now: Rising costs for labor, lots and lumber pushing up new-home prices, industry pros say.

And one quote in particular:

“The industry’s had a worker shortage for the last four years or so,” Dietz (Robert Dietz: chief economist for the National Association of Home Builders) said. “We’re probably short about 200,000 construction workers.”

So where do we get 200,000 workers…worker that since we don’t have them…will likely need some training. So since we are training anyway:

How about the 53206 zip code in Milwaukee and other similar neighborhoods throughout the US? The unemployment rate is always quoted as being higher among African Americans than the stated rates for the general population. Train them…hire them…and keep in mind that you might have to provide some transportation as well. But there’s no reason you can’t find willing employees.

How about Puerto Rico? Because of Washington’s continued neglect the place is still a hot mess. And guess what, they don’t need visas or passports or work permits because they are American citizens. But most of the same issues related above probably apply.

And lastly what about all of the refugees who want to come to the United States…so eager to work that they are entering the country illegally. It is insane to think that we can continue to grow with out continued immigration. But again the same issues apply…and someone is going to have to step up and sponsor some refugees.

The real deal is we don’t have enough labor in this country to keep growing. We particularly don’t have enough labor to do many of the farm labor and construction labor jobs that need to be done. The linked article says so. Other articles have talked about labor shortages for harvesting crops and doing landscape work around the entire nation.

Immigration needs to be fixed. Education needs to be fixed. And business needs to invest their big tax cuts in training and recruitment if they want to survive.

nuff said.

Wisconsin’s US Senator Ron Johnson is a co-sponsor of a GOP Senate Bill to keep migrant families together when they are detained at the US Mexican border. So he’s taken a stand on the correct side of the issue (albeit under pressure from the public). But like more than a few other issues he’s commented on, I don’t think he’s quite got a handle on the issue:

“This bill would protect children and ensure families are not separated while their cases are being adjudicated in court, and would end catch and release of families at the border,” Johnson said in a statement. “But, the real issue at hand is a broader immigration issue. We need to stop incentivizing people to come to this country illegally.

Incentivizing people? You mean with relative peace? Better paying jobs than they can get at home? Better places to live? A better all around life for their children? Those incentives? Because they are going to work very hard to have those things here. And they are willing to do that all the while hiding from the federales’.

But if Senator Johnson wants to know how to stop incentivizing migrant families from coming to the United States, there are three straight forward things the US needs to do. They are simple ideas but very complicated in execution.

First: help our neighbors in Latin American develop flourishing economies. I know that NAFTA is currently a dirty word in Washington, but it has in fact improved trade relations with Mexico and that is not a bad thing. Living wage jobs in Nicaragua or Colombia or Guatemala won’t make the US look as attractive to most citizens of those countries. I don’t get why Washington doesn’t understand just how difficult it is to pick up a few possessions and spend weeks crossing Central America and Mexico to get to the US border. It is not a trip taken lightly. There is more than just a little desperation involved. Good paying, living wage jobs, spurred by US investment and US trade in their home countries is what they really would prefer!

Second: clean and safe neighborhoods. I haven’t heard diddly about the Organization of American States in years and the GOP probably doesn’t find it any more popular than NATO right now. But help via an unified organization with training and dollars and trans-continental co-operation to insure safe and clean living conditions across the region will be another consideration. And this with the first item is probably a chicken/egg situation and both things need to happen simultaneously. But a safe home and neighborhood to come home to after working at a living wage job would certainly allow our neighbors to relax and enjoy their home nations.

Third: And this is totally on the United States and the GOP leadership in Congress in Washington. Why the flock are you allowing the president to pull out of the United Nations Human Rights Council? Now more than ever the United States should be active in the HRC and using the full power and authority of the United Nations to push Latin American governments to incorporate human rights in their nations…so their citizens can have safe neighborhoods and companies feel safe investing in businesses that provide living wage job opportunities.

Incentivize immigrants? Yes, we do that by being America. A perceived safe haven with clean safe housing, jobs that can support a family, and where human beings are afforded the rights to which they are entitled. If they have those things in their home countries they’d have little interest in the long difficult trek to the United States.

Instead Senator Johnson talks like it’s some kind of game show…

Yesterday Ed wrote about businessman Andy Gronik’s decision to drop out of the Democratic gubernatorial race and today comes news Democratic State Rep. has dropped out of the race as well.

Rep. Dana Wachs is the second Democratic candidate in as many days to drop out of the race to unseat Gov. Scott Walker.

Wachs’ departure comes a day after Milwaukee businessman Andy Gronik exited the race — both candidates had struggled to connect with voters despite running campaigns since last summer and registered low support among voters in a Marquette University Law School poll released this week.

In announcing his departure from the race, Wachs endorsed state schools Superintendent Tony Evers who leads the pack of eight Democrats heading into an Aug. 14 primary, according to the poll released Wednesday.

According to the Journal Sentinel report at least six of the remaining candidates (Mitchell, Roys, McCabe, Soglin, Flynn, and Pade) have indicated they intend on remaining in the race, but it will be interesting to see how long those candidates remain in the race as things start to coalesce around Tony Evers, who seems to be the frontrunner at this point based on polling.

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On Thursday Milwaukee Alderman Tony Zielinski was removed as chairman of the Licenses Committee by Common Council President Ashanti Hamilton. Zielinski has said his removal is politically motivated, as he has announced he will challenge Mayor Tom Barrett in 2020.

However according to a new report by Daniel Bice and Mary Spicuzza of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Ald. Zielinski’s removal may have been done for other reasons.

Nearly a dozen sources, who asked not to be identified due to the sensitivity of the issue, said that multiple Milwaukee business owners have raised concerns about Zielinski and his aggressive fundraising tactics.

Zielinski reportedly carries a “Square” type device that attaches to a cellphone and allows him to swipe credit cards for campaign contributions, the sources said.

Some reported feeling pressured to contribute money to his mayoral campaign, and expressed concern their licenses or project approvals would be at risk if they didn’t contribute to the Bay View alderman.

According to the Journal Sentinel report federal authorities have contacted City Hall officials about Zielinski in the past month, so it will be interesting to see ow this all plays out.

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Just yesterday I posted about President Trump’s stand on immigration and his policy to separate immigrant families on the border and then 24 hours later changing his mind! Trump Refuses To Change His Mind and Then Of Course Changes His Mind

And then the very next 24 hours brings another change of mind: Trump tells GOP to ‘stop wasting their time’ on immigration

President Donald Trump on Friday told his fellow Republicans in Congress to “stop wasting their time” on immigration legislation until after November, dismissing his party’s struggle to surmount internal divisions.

Trump’s tweets come just days after he insisted Congress needed to act to resolve the problems at the U.S.-Mexico border. But stubborn differences between conservative and more moderate Republicans in the House have stalled immigration legislation on Capitol Hill, with a vote on a compromise measure delayed until next week.

Trump said Friday that even if a measure passes, it’s doomed in the Senate.

“Republicans should stop wasting their time on Immigration until after we elect more Senators and Congressmen/women in November,” he tweeted. “Dems are just playing games, have no intention of doing anything to solves this decades old problem. We can pass great legislation after the Red Wave!”

At what point will the GOP realize that Donald Trump is mentally unstable and unfit to be President of the United States?

From JSOnline: Andy Gronik drops out of race against Scott Walker

Milwaukee businessman Andy Gronik ended his campaign against Gov. Scott Walker Thursday.

“The response to my candidacy has been incredible, and we’ve been picking up momentum and supporters every day, but just not fast enough,” Gronk said in a statement. “I will be forever grateful to the tens of thousands of people from throughout the state and country who supported my efforts to become the next governor of Wisconsin.”

According to the article, part of the impetus to drop out was the recently released Marquette poll showing that Mr. Gronik was only attracting 4% of the Democratic electorate. Even in a field of ten candidates, that is pretty near the bottom of the scale.

Thank you Mr. Gronik for participating!

As of this writing, after days of blaming the Democrats and demanding that Congress do something to stop the inhumane treatment of families stopped at the US Mexican border, President Donald Trump signed an executive order halting the separation of children from their parents. An act he could have done days ago…an activity that his own administration initiated…something that needn’t have even occurred in the first place.

Citizens from across the country…from both sides of the political divide…let out a sigh of relief when they heard the news. How the Trump regime intends to fix the issue around those children already separated from their parents remains to be seen.

But once more the president has exhibited a complete lack of focus and an astounding ability to flip flop on an issue without batting an eye or losing a modicum of support from his base or the GOP. WTF?

Well just this past Tuesday President Trump met with the GOP leadership in Congress to discuss immigration policy and the various bills being considered in the House and Senate. He said he was totally supportive of them…well whichever one they passed…not giving the GOP a hint on his preferences. Well other than that Congress was the only entity that could fix the problem.

President Donald Trump on Tuesday told House Republicans he is “1,000 percent” behind their rival immigration bills, providing little clear direction for party leaders searching for a way to defuse the escalating controversy over family separations at the southern border.

And it’s uncertain if Trump’s support will be enough to push any legislation through the divided GOP majority.

While Trump held firm to his tough immigration stance in an earlier appearance Tuesday, he acknowledged during the closed-door meeting that the coverage of family separations is taking a toll. Trump said his daughter, Ivanka, had told him the situation with the families looks bad, one lawmaker said.

It obviously looked bad but not bad enough at that point…and the president promised he’d hold firm and not change his mind!

Rep. Kristi Noem, R-S.D., said Trump told lawmakers he “would continue to support the legislation, and that people shouldn’t be worried that he would change his mind.” She said it was a light moment. “Everybody laughed.” [emphasis mine]

And basically twenty four hours later, the president changed his mind:

For President Donald Trump, cracking down on illegal immigration is good politics, but separating families in the process is not.

Trump signed a slapped-together executive order after days of protests from across the political spectrum, including Republican lawmakers who expressed concerns about their re-election prospects, according to current and former administration officials.

Pressure also came from within his own family. Ivanka Trump had been working with top GOP lawmakers — including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California and Sen. Susan Collins of Maine — to find a way out, said a White House official who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive discussions within the first family.

So the rest of the nations of the world can no longer trust the United States because of the president’s various afflictions, the American people can’t trust the president because of his lies and inability to make up his mind, and now even his party can’t trust him to stay his course from day to day. When will the GOP say enough’s enough?

by the way: the only way the Democrats could get involved in the discussions was to wait outside the room where the president was meeting with the GOP and confront him as he left.

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June 20, 2018

Separating families at the border is cruel, unnecessary

From Alderman Jóse G. Pérez, Alderman Ashanti Hamilton, Alderman Michael J. Murphy, Alderman
Nicholas Kovac, Alderman Mark Borkowski, Alderman Tony Zielinski, Alderman Khalif J. Rainey,
Alderman Robert Bauman and Alderman Cavalier Johnson

Right now children are being torn apart from their parents. This is not happening in a war zone or in a far off
country. It’s happening right here on American soil and being implemented by our own federal government,
all in the name of being tough on illegal immigration. These children, nearly 2,000 of them have been ripped
away from their parents, housed in strange places and in many instances denied basic human contact. They
will go weeks perhaps even months without seeing their families again.

The thought of separating families is unspeakable. But unfortunately it is no longer a thought, no longer a
threat, it is reality. And we must speak of it and confront it head on for what it is – cruel and unnecessary.

Too bad that none of the GOP Representatives or Senators has the courage to sponsor a simple one item bill to stop the family separations at the border…and rush it through Congress to the president’s desk…he’d have no way to veto it after all of the bluster and posturing and nonsense coming out of the West Wing this past week.

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