IS EVERYBODY WORKING ON THE PLANTATION? According to Forbes, “The black unemployment rate, often more than double the white rate even when the economy is supposedly humming, is one especially stark symbol of the deep racism that underpins the American economy.
Take current conditions. The overall unemployment rate fell to a 50-year low of 3.6% in April. The rate for whites is 3.1%. For black Americans, it’s 6.7%. Worse, that rate has been rising in opposition to the broader trend.”
According to the Washington Post: "In tweets and interviews, speeches and campaign rallies, Trump often takes credit for a decline in the unemployment rate for African Americans. It’s a well-worn talking point that appears dozens of times in our database of Trump’s false or misleading statements.
"Regardless of whether the black unemployment rate goes up or down in a given month, the president celebrates it as the 'lowest in history' or lowest on record.
"That was accurate in May 2018, when the rate declined to 5.9 percent, its lowest level since the Bureau of Labor Statistics began to report it in 1972. Fast-forward to February 2019, and the unemployment rate for African Americans had jumped back to 7 percent, erasing all the gains it had made over the previous year.
"Yet Trump continues to talk about it as the lowest rate in history. What gives?"
It’s important to keep in mind that this official statistic for black unemployment — which Trump keeps talking about as “the lowest in the history of our country” — is less than 50 years old, dating to 1972.
A different data set from the Labor Department that goes back to 1947 shows that the annual unemployment rate for “negro and other races” went as low as 4.5 percent in 1953 — far below the 6.5 percent yearly average for black unemployment in 2018.
The two data sets (before and after 1972) are not apples-to-apples, but several experts told us that it’s still useful to compare them. “This isn’t the same measure but is the best that exists and even then ‘negro and other races’ is higher than whites,” said Omari H. Swinton, chair of the economics department at Howard University.
So it seems as if Trump’s claim to a historical record is sketchy at best. He was president when the BLS’s current statistic for tracking black unemployment reached a record low of 5.9 percent in May 2018. But an older set of government data suggests black unemployment went much lower in the 1950s.
According to the Brookings Institution: "Who deserves credit for African American employment?" — "When it comes to black employment, more credit for improvement should go to the very persons holding and hiring for the jobs. Notwithstanding the improving national unemployment rates, structural racism still precludes erasing employment disparities between racial groups. We should celebrate all people’s contributions to a robust economy, but we should not allow improvements in the aggregate to hide inequality behind the numbers.
"After being in office for a year, Trump is claiming the lowest African American unemployment rate ever as a result of him being in office. The fuller picture shows that unemployment among blacks has been declining since the early Obama years. However, blaming one’s predecessor for bad employment numbers while accepting signs of growth is a presidential tradition of sorts; and at 6.8 percent, Trump has squatters’ rights on the lowest unemployment rate since the federal government started calculating the metric in 1972.
"Nevertheless , there are certainly other people in specific places who deserve substantial credit for black employment. Instead of looking at national unemployment averages, which can mask geographic inequities, a look at cities’ individual employment rates offers another perspective on where credit for putting people to work should be given. Notwithstanding the broader macroeconomic forces that impact the flow of goods and services nationally, we can get a sense of how fertile and equitable a local economy is by examining cities’ employment profiles."
“We should never celebrate the fact that black folks are just working,” said Andre M. Perry, an expert at the Brookings Institution. “It’s like saying: ‘Look, you have a job. Why should you complain?’ And I think that’s what Trump is signaling. He’s saying to the black community, ‘Look what I’ve given you,’ and not necessarily saying, ‘Let’s look at the percentage of people in poverty, let’s look at the percentage of people rising to the middle class.’”
“Are black folks getting the kinds of jobs that are propelling them to the middle class? No, they are not,” Perry added. “You still see that gap in the unemployment rate, and you still see that gap in median income.” [MORE]
FUNKTIONARY makes it plain:
McJob - a "low pay," low prestige, low benefit, no benefit, no future job in the feudal looks-like-it-could-be food chain service (servitude) sector of the New God Economy. [MORE].
statistics - opinions dressed as facts. 2) the disembodied abstraction of numerical signifiers and graphic ghosts that are conjured up in an attempt to support a political posture already taken. 3) a pseudo-scientific system used to manipulate physical reality. Statistics is a weak model. Statistics is like a bikini—what they reveal are suggestive, but what they conceal is vital. With statistics, there is only modeling of the distribution of events. Also, with statistics, you always have the luxury of having high trends in Jow spaces. Anyone who cites a statistic has an investment in the statistic cited. Statistics generate opinions, but more often, opinions generate statistics. Figures lie and liars figure their way out of lies—so it figures. Dogma and statistics are kissing-cousins. We do not believe what we prove with statistics, we prove what we believe. Statistics are a snap-shot in time of what has been. If you want to be a has-been, believe in statistics. (See: Dogma. Opinions, Beliefs & ICE) Statue of Liberty - originally an image of a woman of recent African descent with broken ball & chains on her feet; now immortalized in statue form as "Big Brother" in drag. (See: Justice System & Tarot)
Slavery - psychologically or physically subjugated to another where one"s thoughts or one's labor is not his or her own. 2) mental and/or physical captivity—living someone else's reality consciously or unconsciously, willingly or unwillingly. 3) a system wherein someone is forced to work without pay, being economically exploited, and unable to walk away. 4) that which separates thought from action. Slavery is an economic system, not a social system. Slavery wasn't ended—-but extended, i.e., slavery is not dead—but in the head—of all men it lingers. Forced labor, also known as involuntary servitude, may result when unscrupulous employers exploit workers made more vulnerable by high rates of unemployment, poverty, racism, crime. discrimination, corruption, political conflict, or cultural acceptance of the practice. [MORE].
wage $lave - on the hour, by the hour. “Sell your time to buy the time that other people sold.” Way down into the marrow of my bone, this much I have always known - I am unable to obey (or conform to) someone who views my time as their own.