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MILWAUKEE — A new report blames Wisconsin’s aging population and lack of business start-ups for job growth that has lagged behind other states since the mid-1990s.

The Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance report shows Wisconsin consistently beat national job growth rates in the late 1980s and early 1990s. But since 1996, the state has outperformed the nation in creating jobs just 27 percent of the time.

Between 2002 and 2011, Wisconsin’s growth in workers between 18 and 64 trailed 33 other states. The report says the state’s aging population and lack of business start-ups are leaving Wisconsin without enough working-age adults and enough new companies to sustain growth seen in other states.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (http://bit.ly/11mTRS1 ) says the alliance found the rate of business start-ups averaged about 2 percent in 2011, ranking Wisconsin 49th among states.

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If you've ever answered "Who has the ball?" with "It's halftime," you might recognize The Airhead. Check out the characters in our cartoon gallery of oddball fans.

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