Montana Politics

Why Aren’t Representative Knox and the GOP Focused on Jobs?

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When he running for office (and not busy threatening to install spy cameras in his yard signs), Representative James Knox said that his number one priority was “jobs.” Ironically, in the video below, he even mentioned the importance of being able to pay workers, something  that seems to have become somewhat less of a priority in recent weeks.

Somehow, I don’t think Mr. Knox is going to have to worry about being a “business owner” much longer, but I wondered what bills he’s responsible for in the session, given his focus on

We’re not talking about business in Montana; we ‘re talking about birthers and Birchers

 employment. It’s an interesting list, but it sure doesn’t seem like it has to do with jobs. Knox proposed:

  • eliminating requirements for the Superintendent of Public Instruction.
  • taking away unemployment benefits for probationary workers.
  • closing public meetings.
  • interpreting the 14th Amendment like a member of the KKK.
  • taking money from public schools (costing jobs) to promote home schooling.

Not a lot of “jobs” there. I don’t mean to pile on Representative Knox, as the commenters and the Billings Gazette and his former employees have done an adequate job pointing out his flaws, but Knox does represent something about the Montana GOP: they don’t give a damn about business or jobs.

After spending months bashing the business climate of Montana (evidence be damned!) and promising to focus on the economy and jobs, what have they done? The first month and more of the session have been devoted to inane gun bills, unconstitutional resolutions and grandstanding about President Obama. We’re not talking about business in Montana; we ‘re talking about birthers and Birchers, and nothing will do more to hurt this state’s economy than the national reputation these clowns are creating.

About the author

Don Pogreba

Don Pogreba is a seventeen-year teacher of English, former debate coach, and loyal, if often sad, fan of the San Diego Padres and Portland Timbers. He spends far too many hours of his life working at school and on his small business, Big Sky Debate.

His work has appeared in Politico and Rewire.

In the past few years, travel has become a priority, whether it's a road trip to some little town in Montana or a museum of culture in Ísafjörður, Iceland.

18 Comments

  • After watching the video, I believe the primary "agencies" James has to deal with a business owner are collection agencies!

  • "Why Aren’t Representative Knox and the GOP Focused on Jobs?"

    They are –

    Part of creating the jobs is having to undo the damage of years of Schweitzerism, and the federal government run rampant under the admistration of the Messiah, President Obama.

    • Republicans won the election on one issue, JOBS, but they have done nothing this session but work against the will of the people, the mail ballot issue was killed, their working against the medical marijuara law. Which will injure patients and cost 100's of jobs They want to limit women's rights over their own bodies. They are against goverment health care -EXCEPT for themselves. They are wasting time and taxpayer money on birther bills, nullification bills, creation of a Montana Milita etc. They don't represent any Montanans I know. They are only doing the bidding of their corporate sponsors. Wake up people pay attention!!

      • It's astonishing to me that they're getting away with it. There has been no focus on jobs at all, other than for ultrasound technicians who will be violating the privacy of women and appellate lawyers who will be making bank getting these unconstitutional laws overturned.

    • Schweitzerism – what does that even mean? What large changes did Schweitzer introduce that are killing jobs? How does the medical marijuana business or people getting abortions without sonograms killing jobs?

  • Has a fact ever penetrated your thick skull or are they all blocked by your idiotic catchphrases?

    I'd say the facts suggest that Governor Schweitzer managed the economy really well, given the Bush Recession that damaged so many other states.

    It'd be fine to have a real debate with a conservative. Why are you incapable of adult discussion?

  • Agreed, the only thing I can see hes accomplished is screwing the guy out of wages and getting away with it once again, just like most politicians. How do these people fake their way up the ladder? Isnt anyone paying attention? Im loosing faith in the goverment in general, tired of the lies and deceit.

  • Well, clearly it's the unreasonable burden of socialistic government intrusion that is keeping this Galt, this Smith, this Roark, this Morgan from capitalistic excess.

  • Schweitzerism is a term I invented for increasing State Spending by 40% during a Governors tenure – it's a good word, but not a catchphrase.

    I can imagine that the GOP's audacity to want to take State Spending levels back a few years is very frightening to a teacher.

    BTW – the State Government functioned just fine before Schweitzer hired 1000 additional FTE (full-time employees) and skyrocketed spending.

    • Eric, I've pointed this out to you before, but you've consistently ignored it. No, state government didn't function "just fine" under Judy Martz. That's why she had an approval rating of 18%, until she decided not to run again and it shot up to an awesome 22% when she retired.

    • So…Schweitzerism is increasing services without running a deficit and while keeping the state from suffering the worst of the economic crisis?

      I sure hope I can get some Schweitzerism from the next governor too!

  • Well it's pretty embarrassing to talk about Jobs and the Working Class in the Welfare State of Montana; Where only 1 in 9 make a living wage; A state who has fluctuated between 49th and 50th on the national wage scale comparison for the last 30 years !!! the only time this state wasn't either of those numbers was the year they started keeping records… Montana was 37th. Sooooooooo why would any politician want to talk about such illustrious facts?

    And ya sure don't here the two bit Trade Unions pushing for better anything. I invited them to come on my TV show — The BEA /Billings Teachers Union — oh i can't they're really really gonna cut us off wah wah (me paraphrasing the pres of that Union.) They're piling on the students and closing schools and cutting out teachers but this Union didn't want to talk about Privatization of Education nor Union Busting – And the Carpenters Union – chance air their grievance on Public Access TV ::: made to order- Union's staging our voice.

    i hope i'm wrong – let me know if there's a Labor contingency making their voice heard in Helena??? Enquiring minds want to know – I want to know

    Ideally i'd like to see Jon bouy be One Term Tester. And perhaps Rehberg will get caught in some Tax evasion scandal –

    BTW Schweitzer is DLC

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