Foley critique of Deal wrong, but amusing
May 20, 2014 10:03 PM | 1808 views | 4 4 comments | 36 36 recommendations | email to a friend | print

Kevin Foley’s May 16 MDJ column (“Deal hiding real record with dubious magazine ranking”) warrants a response from someone in the trenches of workforce and economic development. Under Gov. Nathan Deal’s leadership, Georgia is becoming a diverse economy and in the process of experiencing a manufacturing, creative and high tech renaissance.

Caterpillar has invested $200 million into their new Athens facility, a plant that we attracted from Japan. Trinity Rail (the nation’s largest rail car manufacturer) is returning to the Peach State, investing in a once-shuttered facility in Cartersville.

Companies like Trinity Industries, which just posted a record $857 million in first quarter revenues, are the choice employers Gov. Deal’s policies are attracting.

I was recently in California, where their Film Works Alliance has billboards throughout Los Angeles as a result of Georgia becoming the nation’s third-largest production environment.

Under Deal since 2010, Georgia enjoys the lowest tax burden on its citizens in the nation, 235,000 jobs have been added, unemployment is the lowest it has been since the recession, going from 10.4 percent to 7.3 percent, and we saw a record number of imports and exports for the fourth consecutive year.

But the real humor in Mr. Foley’s column is when he cites Maryland as an example of Democratic leadership. Under Martin O’Malley, a presumptive 2016 presidential candidate, adventures in capital misallocations have become the norm. Projects ranging from roof bars to wind farms have been developed through more than two dozen tax and fee increases on personal and corporate income, retail, gasoline, tobacco and alcohol sales. Despite all the taxing and spending, the little state still projects deficits of $166 million over the next two years. As a result, over the past decade, a net of 66,000 residents and $5.5 billion in income has fled Maryland’s borders.

Ryan Blythe

Executive Director

Georgia Trade School


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May 22, 2014
Couple things, folks.

First, in Mr. Foley's original piece, "Deal hiding real record...", dated May 16, 2014, he is inconsistent about citing his sources. For example, where did this come from?

"For starters, Georgia is next to last in per capita income."

To be fair, he does cite the Census Bureau later in his column for other stuff.

Sidebar: for the low info readers out there, "cite" means to tell us where you obtained the statistics and facts supporting your argument. To "cite" means you have sentences like, "According to the School of Economics, Possum Trot University, Georgia's per capita income..."

I digress.

Next, why did you chose to use per capita income? Is that all you could find? Fair enough. Would there be anything wrong with median income? It would be good to know your thought process for the metrics used.

Next - progressives are so silly - this is a snapshot or a static analysis. If you're going to hang Georgia's entire socio-economic standing, since the Earth cooled, around Nathan Deal's neck, it would be more instructive to give us a "video", or dynamic, or time series, analysis. That is, what has been TREND of Georgia's per capita income? Have things been improving or going down hill?

Next, Mr. Foley fails to include a metric describing cost-of-living. What good is a per capita income 10% higher than the national average if the cost-of-living is 15% higher than the national average?

Finally, there are no statistics describing the movement of the population. The website displays a chart that is based on the Census Bureau's state-to-state migration estimates. The chart shows net positive migration to Georgia. Yes, there are states where the migration is "more" positive (e.g., Texas), but Georgia is not negative (e.g., New York). I guess the people moving to Georgia are just plain stupid and don't realize that we live in such a depressed backwater.

Mr. Foley is not shy about patting himself on the back for his fact-based columns. Generally, I have no argument with his facts, taken in isolation.

However, there are facts, there are all the facts, and there are all facts in context. This is the rub.

Don't take all this to mean that I'm a huge fan of the "Guvnah." I just want to point out that ya gotta read Mr. Foley's stuff with a critical eye. Gotta keep him honest. Know what I mean?
Kevin Foley
May 21, 2014
Mr. Blythe ignores the central argument of my column, Gov. Deal's ethics problems notwithstanding.

If Deal has done such a splendid job bringing employment to the state, why does Georgia rank next to last in per capita income? Why is Georgia among the poorest states in America? Why is our high school graduation rate so abysmal?

As I explained, the answer can be found in Deal's economic policies, which are made by a cadre of wealthy and influential business people.

Georgia is a great state if you're an employer. Not so much if you're an employee.

Ben Twomey
May 22, 2014
Kevin, you say "Georgia is a great state if you are an employer, not so much if you are an employee."

First of all, does that statement come from you, as an employer, or one of your employees? youaq renot qualified to speak for employees.

Secondly, is that the reason hte population keeps growing? do you thin the increases in population each year are just employers, opr do you thinl maybsome of them are employees, who come here because Georgia is damned fine place to live and work, whether you are an employer, an employee or a welfare leech.
Kevin Foley
May 24, 2014
Twomey, I'm quite sure my lowest paid employee makes a lot more than you do.

Sure the population is growing. Twenty years ago the U.S. had a population of 300 million. Today it's 330,000 million. You know about the birds and the bees, right?

Why don't you do some research and become better informed before coming in here and sounding foolish. Also, work on your typing and grammar.

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