Local Government Pleased To Lose More Of Its Employment Base

Owen at Boots and Sabers covers the story of a yeast manufacturing plant’s closing in Milwaukee’s formerly industrial Menomonie Valley. The closure will cause the loss of 80 jobs, but the headline of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel focuses its headline on a by product of manufacturing: Aromatic era may be wafting away for good.

Yes, industry does tend toward the unsightly and to the unscently, but it tends to employ people at more than minimum or service level wages, union or not. But the powers that are commissioned (often not elected) see the loss of industry as an unfettered win:

Red Star’s possible closing is sad, but it opens up another potential redevelopment site, said Laura Bray, executive director of Menomonee Valley Partners Inc., a non-profit group that leads redevelopment efforts in the valley.

Another development site for entertainment venues, like an expanded Indian casino and a Harley Davidson museum. These entertainment-style things, often called the signs of a big-league city by people who want more of them, don’t pay as well as manufacturing jobs and don’t build the community infrastructure and draw families to live in cities; instead, they draw infrequent visitors from the suburbs, divert tourist dollars from other venues within the city, and give the ultra-urban types–who want to think of their cities as big-league more than merely “home.”

(Submitted to the Outside the Beltway Sunday Drive.)

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