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TRUMP SLAMS WISCONSIN GOVERNOR WALKER’S HANDLING OF STATE’S ECONOMY AHEAD OF TUESDAY PRIMARY
Steve Forbes: Well and the whole thing is a desperate diversion. Donald Trump has had a very bad week he knows it. Wisconsin is a critical primary both for him and for Ted Cruz. If Trump wins in Wisconsin he sews up the nomination, if Cruz wins then you got a real race ahead. So that’s why he is going after Walker but what he doesn't fully realize is Walker is still very very popular among republicans and speaker Ryan, who also comes from Wisconsin, very very popular among Republicans. So I don't think the tactic is going to work. By the way, in terms of attracting Democrats to the Republican primary, the Democrats have a very interesting primary with Bernie and Hillary Clinton. You’re not going to get that traditional crossover.
Bruce Japsen: I think, you know, Steve is right. Certainly Trump has had a really bad week up there with his comments about wanting to throw women in jail for abortions and such. I think that Walker is a little vulnerable than he used to be. He attacked the university of Wisconsin system by wanting to cut a quarter of a billion dollars out of your budget. I think that Trump is, given the week that he has had and given he’s down in the polls, I think it might not be a bad thing that he attacked Walker.
Elizabeth Macdonald: They have. Walker is not weak. He had a strong position, he was re-elected. He served two times and beat back a recall, right, that was launched by the unions.
Mike Ozanian: I do, David. Firstly, Walker's approval rating has been hovering below 40 percent for a long time right now. Secondly, I’m not really sure about his conservative credentials after he approved $80 million of taxpayer money to fund a new NBA arena for very rich men. I think that really hurt his image up there and you know this whole thing of him going with Cruz and against Trump. He went to Trump for money to help him with his referendum.
Rich Karlgaard: Yeah. I don't know what Oz is saying here. You have 80 percent Republican approval rating of Scott Walker in his state. This is going to be the week that we look back and see Donald Trump had the nomination sewed up and he absolutely utterly blew it with all his misstatements and fumbles this week including going after a very popular governor, at least popular among the Republicans and as Steve Forbes pointed out the crossover strategy will not work because the Sanders and Clinton election is so close.
John Tamny: Well, yeah. The departure of manufacturing jobs is a sign that Walker has done a very good job to clamor for manufacturing jobs in the 21st century is the equivalent of some governor 100 years ago say saying look at our state, we're attracting farm jobs. Manufacturing jobs are yesterday. The idea that you are going to be a booming state by attracting them gets it totally backwards.
WORK REQUIREMENTS FOR FOOD STAMP RECIPIENTS FUELING NEW DEBATE
Mike Ozanian: That's right, David. Incentives do matter. The work requirement was very important under Bill Clinton to get people off of the welfare roles. The state of Maine, two years ago, did something similar it’s been very effective there. Telling people if you want to collect food stamps and you’re an able-bodied adult you have to at least to try to get a job, you need training, if you don't come for that we’re not going to give you food stamps. Welfare should be a helping hand up not a way of life.
Bruce Japsen: No, that's true. But I think there's a myth here in this thing that people who are using food stamps don't work. I think most do work. It's a myth that they don’t and the food stamp program is there to alleviate malnutrition and to give people a helping hand and I don't think that this is a good thing.
Sabrina Schaeffer: Absolutely, David. We know that there is widespread fraud in the food stamp program; there are far too many Americans who are using this program who don't need to. We know that Washington has actually gone out and solicited people so that they would join the program. You don't have to look any farther than Kansas. Kansas went back to this where you must work in order to receive food stamps and it's done tremendously well. Just three months later they found that they had 75 percent fewer people using the program and they tracked these people and they found that jobs have increased, incomes have increased and poverty has declined.
Steve Forbes: It shows how weak their arguments are. Bruce is right. Most people do work so that's not a big deal. Having another abled bodied people without dependence going to work for their benefits, why not? Makes them feel better, helps them get back on their feet. People don't mind that at all. You take the state of Maine, they found out the people with big assets but low incomes were getting food stamps they stopped that. People were spending it in casinos and going to Disneyland they’ve stopped that. So basic reforms, basic safety net. Yes and work for it. Why not?
Rich Karlgaard: Look, I would say that the fear of starvation is a pretty good motivator for a lot of people. It got me off my butt when I was lazy in my 20s. Athletes have to work out to become good athletes; you have to go to work to know how to work. You have to know how to dress, you have to know about hygiene, you have to know about work conversations. You get out of those habits and you become really unemployable for a long time.
Bill Baldwin: Maybe so. But I think every welfare program, Medicaid, housing, food stamps, should have work requirements, and not with any notion that we're going to be saving taxpayers money, the notion rather is what Rich is talking about, instilling good work habits.
PENDING DC METRO SHUTDOWN SPARKS DEBATE OVER GOVERNMENT-RUN BUSINESSES
John Tamny: Imagine if Southwest Airlines or Disneyland decides oh we’re just going to shut down for six months. They could never do it because there investors would not allow it. That's the problem with government run entities, they do not have investors to serve hence they are not disciplined by the market. Imagine how nice the metro would be and how few shut-downs there would be if it were owned by private entities.
Bruce Japsen: When I first saw this story, it was a sign to me we have a crumbling infrastructure in this country that needs to be addressed on all levels. You don't even hear the presidential candidates talking about it. Whether you want to feed people or you want to raise fees or talk about a gas tax or if you want to feed all these fat cat lobbyists as they head to work downtown and run up spending .There has a be a different way to look at this from an infrastructure standpoint.
Steve Forbes: Yeah, they don’t have to satisfy the public. As long as they know the gravy train is there. And as for infrastructure, you notice there's no infrastructure crisis for private companies. We don't have an infrastructure crisis with freight railroads because they do the best in the world and you don’t have shortages of trucks as FedEx or UPS because they have to serve the public and they know if they don't, they lose. Politicians just know they have to feed the special interests and the public be damned.
Elizabeth Macdonald: They have no more sense than a flock of geese down there in Washington, D.C. Mike Ozanian pointed this out, half of the capitol budget for this training station goes to union fringe benefits. Guess what? They're moving to privatize rail service in Florida. That could perform very nicely.
Sabrina Schaeffer: Right. You showed, David, all those lists of all the ways that we're losing money at the post office and in Amtrak. It's no surprise, that's exactly why democrats, when this story broke, immediately went to their lawmakers in congress and said, we need more money. There's still no accountability.
Bill Baldwin: No, David. There's nothing magical about private ownership. Back in the days of private ownership a century ago, there were plenty of passenger railroad bankruptcies and they weren’t safe either. The train wrecks on the Long Island Rail Road killed an awful lot more people under private ownership than in the 50 years since.
Bill Baldwin: Elbit Systems (ESLT)
Elizabeth Macdonald: Goldman Sachs (GLCGX)