Wisconsin Employment: Already in the Doldrums, Pre-Harley-Davidson

With some tariff induced offshoring of Harley-Davidson, now is perhaps a good time to consider the repercussions of the current administration trade policy on Wisconsin — a steel using (not producing) state, with some cheese and soybean production…

Here are two graphs of Wisconsin employment and revisions, for total nonfarm payroll and manufacturing, respectively.

Figure 1: Wisconsin nonfarm payroll employment, May 2018 release (blue), April (red), March (green), December 2017 (gray, pre-benchmark), 000’s, s.a, on log scale. Light green shaded period denotes data not benchmarked to QCEW data. Source: BLS and DWD.

Figure 2: Wisconsin manufacturing employment, May 2018 release (blue), April (red), March (green), December 2017 (gray, pre-benchmark), 000’s, s.a, on log scale. Light green shaded period denotes data not benchmarked to QCEW data. Source: BLS, FRED, ALFRED.

Note that substantial downward revisions occur with the benchmark revisions, and the revision for manufacturing was particularly large in relative terms (1.5%, in logs).

This means one should be somewhat wary of inferring surges in Wisconsin employment since October 2017.

How sensitive is Wisconsin to the steel tariffs? In Lydia Cox and Kadee Russ’s EconoFact post on the impact of the steel tariffs, this graphic is included.

Source: Cox and Russ (2018).
Wisconsin is an intensive steel user, so a relatively high proportion of jobs are at risk.

Fortunately, soybean production seems more concentrated in Iowa and North Dakota, and Illinois than Wisconsin.
As a reminder, here is a map of soybean production.

Source: USDA.

Thanks, Trump!

Update, 6/30 10AM Pacific: Latest data show Minnesota economy crushing it vs. Wisconsin

69 thoughts on “Wisconsin Employment: Already in the Doldrums, Pre-Harley-Davidson

  1. noneconomist

    So, a U.S. president has threatened to TAX a domestic company so heavily that (a)they’ll beg to back into his good graces but can’t unless (b) they stop bellyaching about losing money–bigly– over his tariffs because (c) everybody says tariffs will be good for every patriotic American except for (d) slimeball liberal/socialist/Marxist/and other big government evildoers who want the government to control the economy and tell everybody–including domestic businesses like HD– what they can and cannot do.
    Conservatism at peak performance?

    1. pgl

      Maybe the real problem was that Harley Davidson sourced almost all of its worldwide income in the U.S. Tax cheats that put most of their profits in Bermuda is much more Trump’s style!

  2. baffling

    simply fascinating how quickly harley went from a trump poster child to a trump punching bag. all those trump supporters should use this as an example for how quickly he will toss you aside when he can no longer extract any value from you.

  3. Bruce Hall

    A little outside of the topic but triggered by Figure 1, but I was wondering if the X-13 program has moved much weighting out of December with online purchasing becoming so predominant. In other words, has the historical seasonal adjustment for December been reduced or has it remained basically unchanged as shoppers avoid brick and mortar establishments? And if there is a shift nationally, are there some states that have more temporary hiring because of large online retailers in their states? http://fortune.com/2016/09/27/ecommerce-sites-holiday-season/

    1. Bruce Hall

      Anyway, I found these seasonally adjusted maps interesting:
      https://www.bls.gov/charts/state-employment-and-unemployment/change-in-nonfarm-employment-by-state-map.htm . Wisconsin appears to be in the doldrums.
      https://www.bls.gov/charts/state-employment-and-unemployment/unemployment-rate-12-month-change-in-the-unemployment-rate-and-number-of-unemployed-by-state.htm . Only two states (Iowa and Maine) had year over year reductions in unemployment rate and and an unemployment rate the same or lower than Wisconsin.
      https://www.bls.gov/charts/state-employment-and-unemployment/state-unemployment-rates-map.htm . Wisconsin compares favorably to most of its Midwest/North Central neighbors.

      With regard to the statement, “This means one should be somewhat wary of inferring surges in Wisconsin employment since October 2017”, does that only apply to Wisconsin?

  4. Moses Herzog

    I just attempted to do a Mr. Spock “Vulcan mind-meld” with commenter “CoRev”. It was one of the most horrifying and traumatizing experiences of my entire life. Here is my attempt to reconstruct the event in written form:

    Menzie, cheese “is an especially egregious example to use”….. you’re not considering how the weather has deeply affected the cheese crops this year.


    How do they get the green plant to bloom cheese with holes?? It’s amazing isn’t it!!!! Menzie, you’re an economist, you don’t produce cheese or sell it, so don’t lecture your readers about cheese.

    But again “cheese is an egregious example”, it’s been decades since the “CoRev strain” of cheese hepatitis has been found and this has caused a surplus of domestic cheese. And then there’s the infamous “Chucky” (of Chucky Cheese fame) inland monsoon that hit the Wisconsin cheese farms. which has nothing to do with the EU response to the Trump tariffs. Soon French will be begging for American cheese, especially the famous Melania cheese which originally came from Yugoslavian goat’s milk and is mainly known for its holes. Please remember Menzie, these are negotiations, and the negotiations over Melania cheese holes is not complete yet. Do you know what will happen to Melania cheese holes??? We don’t know. And if you don’t sell it or produce it Menzie, you can’t tell us that.

    Wow, that is the last time I watch Star Trek reruns and visit this blog at the same time. Harrowing my friends……harrowing!!! [gasp, falls over]

  5. Erik Poole

    Here is the headline I just read on oilprice.com: Oil Jumps As Trump Asks Allies To Cut Off Iranian Oil .

    For all of us investors/traders who focus on oil & gas exploration and production companies, more broadly the upstream sector, thank you President Trump. 10^3 thanks. You are the man. Such a beautiful windfall. US embassy in Jerusalem, Iran nuclear treaty unilaterally shredded. Thanks for re-igniting the Strait of Hormuz risk premium. Thank you sweetheart.

    I have no idea what you President Trump will tell your base when prices at the pump go up but I am sure it will be both entertaining and convoluted. You should tell ’em that higher oil prices are good for the Permian and Bakken oil fields, good for Texas and North Dakota, and that increased US domestic production will offset any risk of an oil price shock driven recession. I can already see the flood of sympathy.

      1. Steven Kopits

        With Trump’s pronouncement, the market is expecting an explicit oil shortage between now and the end of October, which can be seen on the right graph on slide 5, https://static1.squarespace.com/static/530bc001e4b0252b6af38e8d/t/5b33ba0c0e2e723941b97f5f/1530116620964/US+DOE+Weekly+Report+-+Prienga+-+27+June+2018.pdf

        By implication, spot oil prices could really run here — WTI is up $7 / barrel in the last week and $4 in just the last two days. If expectations for expelling Iran from oil export markets hold up — and with the Trump administration, you never know — I would not be surprised to see WTI hit $85 in the next few months.

    1. Moses Herzog

      Erik Poole
      I’m certain you know more than I do about the oil and gas space (no sarcasm there), but it’s hard for me to imagine this sticks for very long. I’ll be near shocked if oil prices haven’t dropped significantly by December. Right now prices at the pump are around $2.85 at the national level. I think $2.55 nat average at the pump or lower is quite probable for the end of the year. OPEC can’t resist pumping whatever Iran can’t sell. And how much will Iran sell through clandestine 3rd parties?? Similar to China, the Iran leaders are much more clever and sophisticated than Trump. They could put Oil shipment contracts in Stormy Daniel’s Spanx right under the bastard’s nose and he wouldn’t know the difference.

      1. Steven Kopits

        Erik –

        OPEC + R are revenues maximizers, thus, TR = P x V

        Assuming no outage from Iran, an extra million barrels per day would tank oil prices by about $10 / barrel, call it 15%. Of the extra million, Saudi might see, say, 400 kbpd, or a production increase of about 4% (say 5% for exports). Thus, increasing production by 1 mbpd would cost Saudi Arabia about 10% of its oil revenues. That’s how you knew that the OPEC meeting would be much less in deeds than in words.

        If OPEC has a choice between a price-led or a volume-led strategy, they will always choose a price-led strategy. And if you follow that reasoning, oil prices will stay low exactly as long as US shales are able to set marginal cost. Right now, they are not able to, even at production growth (all petroleum liquids) of around 2 mbpd / year — which is incredible. Of this, about half is coming from the Permian alone. How long can it last? Maybe another year, maybe two. Not forever. And when US shales falter, we’ll be right back at supplied-constrained prices, because the OPEC prefers high prices to high production. On paper, sustained oil prices could be as high as $130 – $140 / barrel.

  6. Moses Herzog

    Nationally this is obviously not big news, but for any political race geeks out there, Todd Lamb may about to be knocked out of the Oklahoma Governor’s race tonight. Going in, he was the lead candidate to win among 3 strong candidates. He’s now in 3rd place, behind 2nd place by 1,000 votes, if he comes in 3rd, he won’t even be allowed in the runoff election—he will be knocked OUT of the Oklahoma Governor’s race. So in less than 36 hours, Todd Lamb goes from lead candidate among 10 Republican candidates, to being out of the race. This may have to do with his connection with Mary Fallin–that will be for wiser people than me to chew on, as to how much Republican Governor Mary Fallin weighted him down under the water.

  7. pgl

    The EconoFact post is very informative. Two highlights:

    “Tariffs and quotas are often presented as trading off domestic producer gains against consumer losses, but because steel is an input into so many other products, the measures more likely will trade off jobs saved in steel industry against job losses in other manufacturing industries. The losses could be substantial because the number of jobs in U.S. industries that use steel or inputs made of steel outnumber the number of jobs involved in the production of steel by roughly 80 to 1.”

    80 to 1 – wow! Maybe steel workers gain but a lot of other Americans will lose.

    The post does note China production is half of world steel production but then China consumes 45% of world steel production.

    Unfortunately for the Peak-CoRev spin machine no mention of either Predatory Pricing or Predatory Trading. Of course one would not mention the latter term in a discussion that does not involve gaming Wall Street. I say this because neither one of these economic know nothings have any clue what either term even means.

  8. CoRev

    Menzie, is the use of the general terms employment when you seem to have mean “manufacturing employment”, the negative term doldrums and the comparison of unadjusted versus post-adjustment data where the changes are in the hundredths of a fraction deliberate?

    I f yes, I think this is in RTD complaint territory.

    1. pgl

      He provided BOTH nonfarm employment and manufacturing employment and yet you whine?

      C’mon CoRev. I’m sorry reality bites your Trump agenda in the rear end. Maybe you can dig up some series that says Trump’s policies have been wonderful for the state. After all – you get your economic news from Fox and Friends!

      1. CoRev

        menzie & pgl it was this comment that triggered the questions: “Note that substantial downward revisions occur with the benchmark revisions, and the revision for manufacturing was particularly large in relative terms (1.5%, in logs). “

        1. Menzie Chinn Post author

          CoRev: Well, if you are unconvinced by the benchmark revisions, what about the fact that NFP employment is decreasing in April and May, April change revised downward…

          1. CoRev

            Menzie, my first point was the use of doldrums, when WI unemployment is well below the national average. Do the adjustments move them to the national average?

  9. Erik Poole

    pgl: Thanks for the links. Oil prices were already climbing without any help from the Trump administration but overall his policies — increased deficit spending, US embassy in Jerusalem, Iran nuclear deal shredded, the steel and aluminium tariffs — have been most helpful. Current oil prices have exceeded expectations.

    The price of oil keeps climbing despite the relative strength in the US dollar. As Trump supporters all know really well, the strong US dollar is a vote of confidence in the President and will stimulate more export employment.

  10. Moses Herzog

    Wow, Germany I think has been knocked out by South Korea. Now I will say South Korea has had an underrated team for awhile now (they play exceptionally well as a unit, even though on an individual level the talent is low). This speaks well of South Korean guys “on the pitch” in how they value the TEAM concept.

    But knocking out Germany, a perennial top 4 team internationally?!?!?!! Wow man. I think this has something to do with the German coach having his tongue squirming like 3 inches outside of his mouth all the time. I still think this guy is a covert lizard person. Could the German football coach be a lizard person from a “satellite” galaxy orbiting the Milky Way?? Well, as CoRev likes to say, “these are still negotiations, we really don’t know.”

    The good news is I can still salivate over these Mexican chick sports anchors and Mexican chicks in the commercials on Telemundo, so there’s that. These Mexican chicks are into their form-fitting clothes, and God bless them for it.

      1. Alan Goldhammer

        Unfortunately Mexico draw Brazil in the Round of 16 and likely will be heading home on July 3 just in time for the 4th of July celebrations south of the border!!!

  11. Erik Poole

    Moses Herzog:

    I am about as bad as James Hamilton at forecasting oil prices. Perhaps worse. I can get the direction and momentum right for periods of time. So with that caveat, here are some factors that you and others may not be paying attention to:

    Saudi Arabia has a strong incentive to keep oil prices relatively high going into the Saudi Aramaco initial public offering (IPO).

    Libya, Nigeria and Venezuela are all producing well below potential due to ruinous rent seeking and violent political conflict. The near-term forecast for all three countries is for things to get worse, not better.

    Oil inventories built up from late 2014 to 2016 have been steadily declining and appear poised to continue declining.

    Some pundits have questioned the availability of spare productive capacity and suggest that Saudi Arabia has somewhere near 2 million barrels per day of excess capacity which is not much given how geo-political factors have and could affect supply.

    Most rich western economies have excise taxes on fuel that are much higher than US taxes and so, to some extent, are protected from higher oil prices.

    OPEC. As a general rule, people tend to view OPEC as much more powerful and influential than it really is. OPEC can influence and moderate oil prices, not prevent them from going where they will go. That said, the cooperation between OPEC and Russia is a new factor that hints at greater influence. US sanctions on Russia help too. Then both Saud and Russian leaders are making noises about not letting oil prices go too high because of how it could negatively impact consumption growth.

    I expect Trump to still be in office by the end of 2018. Therefore, the Trump variables will continue to prove some support to higher oil prices.

    On the other hand, if President Trump can successfully engineer a global economic slowdown, well, that would put downward pressure on oil prices, no doubt. That would also mean missing his 4% real US GDP growth target by a wide margin.

    I am currently expecting the Brent Crude benchmark to trade between US$65 and US$75/bbl at 2018 year-end.

    1. Moses Herzog

      All of that seems reasonable and well-stated. Going to be interesting to watch (or maybe momentarily painful at the gas station). If Menzie makes future posts on oil and/or energy commodities you’ll have to throw your 2cents in. For such an intelligent and broadly knowledgeable guy as Professor Chinn is, he strangely and mysteriously attracts a segment of village idiots here, and more intelligent and thought out comments like yours are so welcome.

  12. Moses Herzog

    I’m curious, this 50 year old baby Haggardly Huckabee is upset because she supports children being stolen from their parents, and now she’s facing the repercussions of verbally supporting children being put in cages and given psychiatric drugs:

    Now if you want to refuse service to homosexuals because of what they do behind closed doors in their own bedroom, on their own property, Haggardly Huckabee is totally cool with that. But if Haggardly Huckabee waves a pompom for ripping children away from their parents and putting them into cages, then giving them narcotics to shut them up and then is told that maybe she can find other places to eat because they think Haggardly Huckabee is the b*tch from Hell—well then “her rights” have been “violated”

    What is she going to do now, have a question from a child STAGED for the cameras so Haggardly Huckabee can do a FAKE crying routine on TV?? We haven’t scene fake crying acted out this cheesily since the master Thespian John Boehner left the TV airwaves:

    1. pgl

      Red Hen did Haggardly Huckabee a favor. The waitress put online what she had ordered and OMG. No wonder this hate filled lying cow is so incredibly fat.

    2. pgl

      “The psychiatrist who has been prescribing powerful psychotropic medications to immigrant children at a federally funded residential treatment center in Texas has practiced without board certification to treat children and adolescents for nearly a decade, records show.”

      ICE is committing child abuse. At first I thought Cynthia Nixon’s rant about ICE went too far but now I’m wondering if she was being all too kind.

    3. pgl

      I just listened to her rant about how the Red Hen “harmed” her. Seriously – sending her home so she might eat a healthy meal instead of what she wanted to order may have helped her lose a little weight.

      Not eating is harm but kidnapping one’s children is allegiance to the law? WTF?!

      1. Moses Herzog

        @ pgl
        I am an exceedingly lazy man. I guarantee if I can rustle up gunk in a frying pan or oven, then Haggardly Huckabee can. Especially with her hedonistic food appetite. Now I am sure she has long hours, but let’s get real, if Haggardly Huckabee has a pan, some cooking oil, and the intelligence to thaw out meat before hand—it’s just not that damned hard or “time consuming”. Most fish is 3 minutes per side, maybe 5-6 for very thick cut salmon. She certainly has the money to do it. Most modern ovens have a digital cooking timer that shuts the oven off and chimes at the prescribed cooking time—Haggardly Huckabee can do her reading while her shit cooks. This isn’t Julia Childs molesting turkey innards for half an hour and then globbing a pound of butter on top before she even has it in the oven . It’s not THAT hard.

        1. Bruce Hall

          Ms. Castro follows in the tradition of Fidel, Raul, Che, and Hugo. I’m not sure “get to vote for” is the appropriate term.

          1. Menzie Chinn Post author

            Bruce Hall: I think you should consider your use of analogy to Fidel, Che, etc. as opposed to other democratic socialists of Europe which would be more appropriate. And why did you pick those of Hispanic origins, if you want to use extremist hyperbole? Why not Lenin? Wow.

          2. Bruce Hall


            It seemed more appropriate on a number of levels. As for Lenin, Marx, et al, they were explicit in their aims. The Castros, Chavezs, Obradors, Cortezs, etc. are more subtle and just as dangerous economically and personally. “Democracy” is defined as “agreeing with me or else”.
            Though dissent is certainly permitted in today’s Venezuela – in fact there is an important
            opposition media – the Chávez government has exercised its power to put in place legal
            instruments that can be applied to suppress criticism, when deemed necessary. According to the
            criminal code, it is now an offense to show disrespect for the president and other government
            authorities, punishable by up to 20 months in jail. A December 2004 Social Responsibility Law
            comes close to censorship by imposing “administrative restrictions” on radio and television
            . https://www2.gwu.edu/~clai/recent_events/2006/060817-LATIN%20AMERICAN%20SEMINAR–%20Venezuela.pdf

            The U.S., of course, could never move toward that. Enlightened Progressives everywhere are the most tolerant people on earth. https://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/08/opinion/sunday/a-confession-of-liberal-intolerance.html

            Besides, Maxine Waters will show the way: https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/the-latest-sign-of-political-divide-shaming-and-shunning-public-officials/2018/06/24/9a29f00a-77bc-11e8-aeee-4d04c8ac6158_story.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.bad432f4a061 . And she’s not even Hispanic.

          3. baffling

            “Democracy” is defined as “agreeing with me or else”.
            just curious bruce, would you describe trump behavior as “agreeing with me or else”? he attacks companies that do not follow his prescriptions. he attacks journalists who do not report what he wants them to say. he advocates violence against those who protest against him. and he grabs women by the p*&^y when he gets the chance. i guess we should simply overlook those faults with respect to trump?

          4. Bruce Hall


            Thank you. But they’ did very well speaking for the oppressed… from their guaranteed positions of power. Or was it oppressing the oppressed?

            The “democratic socialists” of the European tradition are nothing like the “democratic socialists” of the Hispanic South and Central America and Caribbean traditions… or the extreme left wing of the U.S. “Democratic Party”… “Democracy” is defined as “agreeing with me or else”.

          5. noneconomist

            Unfortunately, Bruce, your denunciation of Ms. Castro seems to rest as much on her surname than on her politics.
            It’s worth noting, though, that autocrats–or potential ones–also thrive on self-praise and lots of love from their loyal followers. Not unusual to hear their close admirers fawning love while claiming how simply being around glorious leader completes their lives.
            The sycophants would never, of course, admit the chosen one lies at the drop of a hat because, in totalitarian societies, when the leader speaks, his people sit up at attention. Young autocrats are often singled out for particular admiration.
            Autocrats also have developed this habit of finding easy scapegoats for their people’s problems. The ardent followers of autocrats have no trouble seeking them out because of the color of their skin, their religion, or their ethnic backgrounds. They are often portrayed as dangers to the community at large because of those factors.
            The voters in her congressional district will decide if she deserves a seat in the House. Since she’s not running in Iowa, or Kansas, or North Dakota, her last name will have little to do with her success or failure.

          6. baffling

            bruce, your silence on trump’s similar position of “Democracy” is defined as “agreeing with me or else” is deafening. you do understand what a hypocrite is, right? dishonest losers like yourself have become a real problem in the world today. lack of integrity. sad, really.

          7. Bruce Hall


            I’d like to point out that there is a difference between “berating” and “attacking”. The corruption of words has become a rather large political problem. Below is a comment that delves into this with regard to a different political issue, but the principles hold:

            The gay-rights movement has created, and popularized, the following distortions of political speech:

            1) The invention of “hate speech.” There is no such thing as “hate speech.” The very term is a truncation of the term “hateful speech”—and the truncation is significant. Nobody denies that some speech can be “hateful,” or express hateful ideas, but the traditional response to “hateful” speech has always been more speech—i.e., engaging with the hateful ideas expressed to show how and why they are hateful, to defeat them in the marketplace of ideas.

            “Hate speech,” by contrast, is a term used to place ideas outside the realm of engagement—to avoid engagement instead of confronting the offending idea. While the terms appear superficially similar, “hateful speech” is an invitation to engagement, debate, and free thought; “hate speech” is a term used to disengage and suppress opposing viewpoints. The gay-rights movement has used and popularized the term “hate speech” for over 40 years.

            2) The false equation of speech with violence. “Baiting,” as in “red-baiting,” was a common term fifty years ago. It referred to the practice of accusing someone (often accurately) of being a Leftist. “Gay-baiting,” derived from “red-baiting,” was the similar practice of accusing someone of being homosexual. The gay-rights movement used to decry “gay-bashing”—the once-common practice of people (often gangs of teens) randomly physically attacking persons they believed to be homosexual. About 40 years ago, however, the gay-rights movement began to conflate “-baiting” and “-bashing”—i.e., the movement began to refer to those who verbally disagreed with its political goals of the moment as “bashing” the movement. This subtle substitution of a term denoting physical violence for a term denoting political opposition has since become widespread across the political spectrum, so much so that it is now routine to hear people in the news describe someone who disagrees as “bashing” the person they disagree with.

            3) The invention of the “-ophobia” locution. The “-ophobia” locution, as in “homophobia,” was invented by the gay-rights movement as an “I’m-rubber-you’re-glue” retort to the psychiatric establishment; “You say we’re “sick?” You’re sick!” It is ironic that the Islamists have adopted this locution (“Islamophobia”) along with much of the rest of the gay-rights movement playbook, without objection by the gay-rights movement—even though the Islamists would surely slay the adherents of the gay-rights movement were they to gain sufficient political power.

            4) Blurring the distinction between civil rights and “human rights.” The gay-rights movement has never been a civil-rights movement; it has always been a “human rights” movement. Civil rights under the Constitution are rights held by the individual against the government, to prevent or provide redress against government overreach; “human rights” are invariably demands by an aggrieved group for some form of government preference or largesse on the basis of membership in the aggrieved group.

            The gay-rights movement has been actively working to blur the distinction between civil rights and “human rights” since at least the Anita Bryant controversy of the late 1970s. The reason the movement fought so hard to obtain same-sex marriage is that this provided the movement with its first toehold in civil rights law—and therefore provided the movement with a siege platform from which it could attack other elements of the First Amendment.

            5) Distortion of the concept of “discrimination.” “Discrimination” is not illegal—indeed, discrimination, the making of distinctions, is a necessary element of day-to-day existence. Invidious discrimination is something that the law addresses—e.g., distinctions that are based solely on race, religion, or national origin. Even these distinctions may be permissible, if it can be shown that they are done to further a “compelling state interest,” but that is a very high bar of proof to meet.

            —— buzzsawmonkey (not me)

          8. baffling

            “I’d like to point out that there is a difference between “berating” and “attacking”.
            and trump does both. bruce, you still did not answer the simple question. rather you tried to deflect the topic. hypocrite.

  13. Moses Herzog

    There are many things I find humorous and amazingly ironic about the comments section of this blog. One of which is that the host of the blog is a “Professor of Public Affairs” and people would be shocked he discusses politics sometimes. I’m wondering if there was blog hosted by a Professor of Humanities and he was discussing the merits of a particular painting or the artistic value of a film if there would be like 5-6 idiots who would regularly visit the blog telling him it was outrageous for him to discuss paintings and cinema?? Would the CoRevs, “rtd”s, Ed Hansons, Bruce Halls, and “Princeton” Kopits of the world be going there everyday telling him to stop insulting “The Dukes of Hazard” because we would only know if it measured up against “To Kill a Mockingbird” and “The Wizard of Oz” when the Nielsen ratings came out??

  14. Ed Hanson


    I find it interesting that every commentator was focused on the price of oil and its consequences, personal, country, and world. And not one comment on the reason for the Iranian oil boycott call, the certainty of Iran developing and stockpiling nuclear weapons in just a few years, as well wih the means of delivery, and this is a way to begin to stop this from happening. What would be the cost, personal, country and world of Iranian nuclear capability. A nuclear arms race in the Middle east? A pre-emptive strike by Israel or Saudi /Arabia, or someone else? Note, not even considering the cost of actual use of Nukes, that is clear to everyone.

    BTW, this is not criticism of the commentators. I suspect most of the world political leaders think the same way, how much does an increase of the oil price going to cost me now, hang the cost of other events in the future. And the comments here reflect that attitude.


      1. 2slugbaits

        But, but, but, but…the Iranians were saying mean things about the Israelis!!! And the Iranians violated terms that weren’t in the agreement!!! And the Iranians sent people to blow up airplanes on 9/11….oh wait, I guess that was other countries we call friends. Whatever. Still, the Rapture is near. We’re living in the end times. The Children of Light must vanquish the Children of Darkness. President Nutandyahoo says the Iranians are nasty and untrustworthy…oh wait, maybe he and his crooked wife aren’t the most trustworthy. Anyway, our President stood up to those Arabs in Iran.

        1. Moses Herzog

          @ 2slugbaits
          5 star comment by you.

          I guess the Israeli populace doesn’t care how many lies you tell or X number of corruption trials you have going if you are the Israeli Prime Minister. The important thing is we keep screaming that “The Amalekites are coming to kill our children in their sleep!!!!! Aaaaaahhh!!!!” and they tell the Bedouin tribes they can go F__ themselves when we want new illegal settlements built. Now if Germany (or say Russia encroaching on Eastern Europe) pulled this stunt, we call it bloody murder. When the Israelis tell the Bedouins they have no right to exist we call it “the hand of God helping God’s Chosen”. Really cool how that one works.

          The “Never Again” standard only applies to Jews, not Bedouin Tribes near Israel. It’s one of those deals where if you don’t have the “golden ticket” you’re just out of luck. It’s only a humanitarian crime when it affects your tribe. Try to keep that straight people, ok?? A large contingent of Israeli Jews (the majority??) have that concept mastered, PhD level, so try to be “quicker on the take”, ok people?? Learn the appropriate places to make the cognitive disconnect, then it all makes sense.

        2. CoRev

          Wow! Reading these comments and it becomes even more obvious how far out of step with most Americans you really are. Defending even another socialist, Iran blaming Israel and ignoring the obvious signs of Iranian foment in the ME are really your positions? Really?

    1. 2slugbaits

      Ed Hanson So apparently you agree that Trump’s decision to kill the Iranian deal was a big mistake.

      As to the “reason” for the Iranian boycott demanded by Trump, I don’t think there is any reason. It was just an unthinking impulse by an unthinking and impulsive President.

  15. joseph

    Ed Hanson: “And not one comment on the reason for the Iranian oil boycott call, the certainty of Iran developing and stockpiling nuclear weapons in just a few years.”

    Uh, Ed, we had a nuclear agreement with Iran, but your Dear Leader Trump blew it up. There were international inspectors on the ground. Facilities were closed and monitored 24/7. The reason you are worried now is that Trump trashed the deal and the Iranians are responding to it.

    And remember that Republicans are also responsible for the North Koreans having nuclear weapons. Clinton had negotiated a deal to prevent weapon development. There were international inspectors on the ground. There were seals and 24/7 monitors on facilities. And just like Trump, Bush blew it all up. Inspectors were expelled. And shortly after the North Koreans tested their first weapon on Bush’s watch.

    Your reckless Republicans are going to get people killed.

    1. pgl

      Well said! I bet Trump is right now thinking “with friends like Ed … who needs enemies”!

      1. Ed Hanson

        So I get a replies from 4 of the resident leftist. Even a link confirming that in 7 years all restrictions and inspections of Iran are off. After that time Iran will complete its nuclear weaponry. But because of the 4’s hatred of President Trump and their loyalty to President Obama, They are committed to denial of the obvious, or worse know the obvious but prefer to lie about it, to themselves and others.

        At least The leaders of the rest of the world know of Iran ambitions, but also are willing to punt the problem to the future knowing they will be out of office. President Trump is one of the few leaders with the courage to confront the problem now although he too would be out of office when Iran becomes a nuclear threat to the world.

        Feel free to twist my words all you want, slug, but it was before as it is now, I agree with President Trump, some must be done, and the sooner the better for the safety of us all.

        I do not agree with the leaders who refuse to act in time. I only need to remind you all of the years that Hitler’s Germany could have been controlled a, saving the world the cost of WWII at least in Europe and Africa.


        1. 2slugbaits

          Ed Hanson Even a link confirming that in 7 years all restrictions and inspections of Iran are off.

          Wrong. Very wrong. A few of the restrictions are gradually relaxed beginning in 7 years. The most important restrictions will remain in place long after you have met your maker.

          After that time Iran will complete its nuclear weaponry.

          More idiocy. What Trump just did was incentivize the Iranians to ramp up their nuke program full speed ahead. Instead of being decades away from having a nuclear weapon capability, they will very likely be months away.

          some must be done, and the sooner the better for the safety of us all.

          So that leaves you with two “somethings” that can be done. The first option is to let Iran go ahead and develop their nuclear weapons capability at hell bent speed. The second option is to declare war on Iran. Do either of those constitute your idea of “winning”?

          Like I said earlier, another Rapture nut.

          1. Ed Hanson


            So you say.

            As you have insisted on in the past, show a link to back your claim. It should clear misconceptions.


    1. 2slugbaits

      And they don’t understand why sane people think they’re part of a Trump cult following.

  16. pgl

    I checked a transfer pricing news service (subscription required) for cases involving motorcycle multinationals. I knew of some bizarre issue between the Japanese government and the IRS over Yamaha some 25 year ago but the only thing I could find re Harley Davidson included:
    “The Wisconsin public interest advocacy group WISPIRG released a report April 23 analyzing the economic impact of offshore tax havens on state corporate tax collections. The report, entitled “The Tax Haven Tradeoff,” found Wisconsin loses $406 million in income tax revenue annually to “corporate tax haven abuse.” Such abuse can occur when corporations establish subsidiaries in low-tax or no-tax jurisdictions and channel their profits to these subsidiary operations.”

    I read this WISPIRG report and it was incredibly weak. Yes Harley has overseas affiliates – mostly their distribution affiliates in Europe and Asia (not tax havens). WISPIRG could not be bothered to tell us how Harley’s worldwide profits were allocated but we do know from their 10-K filings that almost 95% of its has been sourced in the U.S. with the rest being sourced with their distribution affiliates. Yea I know CoRev thinks the distributors are making fat operating margins but that is inconsistent with them getting only 5% of total profits as anyone who passed 1st grade arithmetic would know.

    But it seems we have found a left wing group even dumber than CoRev – WISPIRG, take a bow!

  17. Moses Herzog

    I just finished S. Craig Zahler’s “A Congregation of Jackals”. A great book for anyone who likes reading westerns.

  18. Trump will never be President

    Wisconsin’s unemployment rate is 2.9% and Menzie finds a way to make it sound bad.

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