Monday, September 12, 2011

No to Texas....

* Do we want the whole country to be like Texas?  Gov. Rick Perry, the Republican governor of Texas, brags about the jobs he has created in his state.  However, a close examination of what is really happening in Texas will make many Americans say, "No thank you," to a President Perry.

The Atlantic:

...Texas may be No. 1 in job growth, but it's also No. 1 in people without health insurance (more than a quarter uninsured), No. 1 in high school dropouts (more than 20 percent don't have a diploma or GED) and the nation's No. 1 emitter of carbon pollution. It's among the top states in child poverty, teen pregnancy and low-paying jobs, as well....

What else does Texas have that we don't want?  Texas has a high number of teens giving birth.  According to statistics published in December 2010 at the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, Texas had 54,284 births to girls between 15-19 years of age. Ohio, according to the same National Campaign, had 16,204 births during the same time.  Of course, abstinence education is very popular in Texas.  Do you think Ohioans would like to add 38,000+ teenage mothers to our state's statistics?

Do you know those jobs that Perry brags about all the time?  ThinkProgress has the details:

...As the Austin American-Statesman noted, “while the national unemployment rate is 9.1 percent and the Texas unemployment rate is 8 percent, some 23 states, including New York, have lower unemployment rates.” In addition, “jobs grew at about the same rate during Democrat Ann Richards’ four years as governor” as they have under Perry.

Between 2008 and 2010, jobs actually grew at a faster pace in Massachusetts than they did in Texas, and “Texas has done worse than the rest of the country since the peak of national unemployment in October 2009.” But as it turns out, Texas is leading the nation in one employment metric — the number and percentage of minimum wage jobs:
Additionally, Texas has by far the largest number of employees working at or below the federal minimum wage ($7.25 per hour in 2010) compared to any state, according to a BLS report. In 2010, about 550,000 Texans were working at or below minimum wage, or about 9.5 percent of all workers paid by the hour in the state. Texas tied with Mississippi for the greatest percentage of minimum wage workers…From 2007 to 2010, the number of minimum wage workers in Texas rose from 221,000 to 550,000, an increase of nearly 150 percent....

Can you imagine being forced to work at a rate below the minimum wage and still trying to support your family?

*  Some city mayors in Ohio are against a proposal by Gov. Kasich. 

The administration of Gov. John Kasich is floating a proposal to centralize municipal income tax collections in Columbus — an idea that many mayors in the Tuscarawas Valley oppose.

“I think it’s absolutely ridiculous,” said Sugarcreek Mayor Jeremiah Johnson.

“It’s another way for the state to generate income,” said Dover Mayor Richard Homrighausen. “They can’t live within their means.”

Such a plan would infringe on home rule.......

Of course, Kasich has slowly been taking away local control by pushing forward his anti-public worker agenda, telling cities and school districts who they can fire, his plan to adjust the school year to his liking, destroying the Ohio Department of Development by filling it with corporate big shots, having members of the State Board of Education fired even though their terms were not finished, and other power grabs by the governor.

*****  Is this what the Republican redistricting plan would look like?  An article at WHIO-TV gives some background on the Republican proposal, and what a map would resemble: