And the line is open. Last headline:

* Firestone Building Products is closing a plant in Kingston, S.C., and moving 100 jobs to a plant in Prescott that employs about 400. With demand for building materials down, Firestone decided to consolidate two roofing materials plants into one. It set up a bidding war between South Carolina and Arkansas. We won. Congratulations have been given to the Steelworkers union. That raises a question of whether the deal included some labor concessions, such as when a tire company used a similar process to wring cuts out of workers to keep a plant in Texarkana.

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Here’s the Firestone release. Politicians elsewhere are praising Arkansas’s superior work ethic, quality of life, hard-working officials, etc. Better ransom is the more precise wording, but the alternative is the loss of 400 jobs, as the hostage takers in such situations well know.

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