SEEKING RENTS, GENERATING RENTS, DISSIPATING RENTS.
Republican reforms in Wisconsin include a push to repeal a prevailing wage law, which, like the national Davis-Bacon Act, enshrines union scale as the prevailing wage to be paid on government contracts. As a consequence, established contractors have a higher cost basis for cost-plus-normal-profit, and at least some incentive to protect existing ways of doing business, lest they be under-bid. There's more here. Apparently, capital exploiting taxpayers is more rewarding than capital exploiting labor. The highway builders seem to be particularly devoted to prevailing wage. And yet public expenditure on railroads is somehow tainted.