Oh, oh, oh, oh sweet irony of mine!
So, yesterday we learn that for the fifth month in a row, Wisconsin has led the nation in jobs- lost AND that another large (and very profitable) company-- Thermo Fisher-- is closing its plant in Two Rivers as part of a larger transition toward non-American labor in Mexico and elsewhere.
In the midst of this carnage, Walker has the nerve to put up an ad with "Chris" who is purportedly a small business owner that is extolling the virtues of Scott Walker's job-creatin' business utopia... that is losing more jobs than other state.
Well, it turns out that "Chris" is Chris Rebholz, aka the King of Infomercials. Chris made a name for himself, as well as a gazillion dollars, selling products almost exclusively made in China, to Americans via infomercials. Name a product you've seen sold on TV, and the odds was pretty good that it was one of Rebholz's Tristar products.
Of course, there is nothing wrong with infomercials, but the reality is that Wisconsin is hemorrhaging manufacturing jobs almost exclusively to China. And when customers buy from a TV ad or online, it also requires fewer jobs to get that product to the customer because there is no store and the jobs that go with a store.
In other words, if you were going to set up a business model with the fewest American jobs possible, it would be Chris Rebholz's business model. That's the guy... that Scott Walker chose to promote his job creation efforts.
Rebholz was able to set up such a good system for importing Chinese trinkets, selling them on TV or online, and then mailing them out to people that he's gone to other businesses and offered up his expertise of getting a product, made cheap in China, and to the hands of the American consumer with the fewest American jobs possible.
One of Rebholz's biggest "trading partners" is Wal-Mart, who apparently isn't content importing almost all of the job-killing products it sells from China in their stores-- they now have figured out a way to get around the overhead of paying all those sales clerks a few dollars over minimum wage: by encouraging customers to order online, which is handled entirely by Rebholz's company, Christopher Morgan.
Here's how Rebholz described what it is he does BizTimes.Com recently:
“Traditional companies are downsizing and looking to outsource some of their workload to companies like ours.”
Yes, you heard that right folks-- Walker's job-promotin' carny barker helps companies with their -"downsizing."
Here's the kicker, though: Rebholz is also a member of the "China Business Council" which features on their logo a Chinese flag placed in front and almost completely covering-up the American flag below it:
China Business Council Logo
As the name suggest, the Chinese Business Council helps facilitate the manufacturing of products in China and then selling them in the United States.
UPDATE: A few people have written to me and pointed out that Rebholz is a well-known philanthropist in the Milwaukee area and has been a major force behind a $160 million addition now being built at Children’s Hospital and will be honored with the naming of the Rebholz Family Promenade upon completion. He should, of course, be applauded for these efforts. Rebholz is not the story-- Walker's decision to use Rebholz as the poster child for small business and job creation is the story.