It's been a long weekend for me, going to Vegas and having Monday off and such. But I did keep my eyes on things, and noted this remarkable stat from Friday's state-by-state unemployment numbers. And the news is not that Wisconsin remains with the state with the lowest amount of jobs created in the Midwest over the last 12 months (a pathetic 9,100 in a country that created 1.8 million, as I broke down last week). No, the big news is shown in these numbers, which begin with the end of last year.
Total jobs, December 2011
Wisconsin 2,719,800 jobs
Minnesota 2,683,300 jobs
Private sector jobs, December 2011
Wisconsin 2,313,900 jobs
Minnesota 2,276,000 jobs
Now compare it to where we are now.
Total jobs, December 2012
Minnesota 2,735,200 jobs
Wisconsin 2,728,900 jobs
Private sector jobs, December 2012
Minnesota 2,324,100 jobs
Wisconsin 2,323,600 jobs
That's right, Minnesota now has passed Wisconsin for total jobs, despite having 384,000 fewer people in the 2010 Census. Needless to say, the Mud Ducks are kicking our asses all over the place, and you can't help but notice the clear contrast in state governments. Minnesota replaced GOP Tim Pawlenty with Mark Dayton in the Governor's chair, which allowed the state to avoid being subjected to the worst of its fluke-election TeaBagger legislature. And unlike too many Wisconsinites, the 'Sotans learned from their screw-up in 2010, and defeated a proposed ban on gay marriage at the polls and gave control of both houses of the State Legislature back to the Dems.
It sets up quite a contrast in states and governance for the next 2 years between Wisconsin and Minnesota. We've certainly been losing it so far in the age of Fitzwalkerstan, and I have a hard time believing we're going to do anything to attract young, intelligent, high-value-adeed workers to much of our anti-gay marriage, anti-education state to win them out over going to progressive, advancing areas like the Twin Cities. And even if these needed workers do come or stay here, it's only a few places they'll choose to live. You think it's coincidence that Madison continues to boom while much of the rest of the state retracts? It's not.
But enough of the depressing stuff, let's get to a positive number.
Sometimes, things fall your way in Vegas. Last weekend was one of those times. And it's probably the best chance I have of getting a big payday in Fitzwalkerstan.