Monday, July 13, 2009

More Evidence Of Two Americas

The New York Times reports the recession has hit blacks in New York City four times as hard as it has hit whites.

David R. Jones, president and chief executive of the Community Service Society, which lobbies on behalf of low-income workers, said he did not “think this recession has gone out equally.”

Low-wage workers and workers who lack skills are really getting hit hard,” he said. “These are the workers who are sort of fungible. They lose their jobs very quickly, particularly in retail, the people who move boxes and do unskilled work. There are large numbers of African-Americans in that sector.”

Manufacturing, which has shed more jobs than any other sector of the city’s economy, had become a mainstay for black workers, Mr. Jones said. Government jobs had also become a prime source of solid, stable work for many blacks in the city, he added. But lately there have been cutbacks there, too, as falling tax revenue has forced the paring back of budgets.

The Times notes that the jobless figures among blacks became enough of a national issue that at a White House news conference last month, President Obama was asked what he could do to “stop the bloodletting in the black unemployment rate.”

The president said that to help any community, whether it be blacks, Latinos or Asians, he needed to “get the economy as a whole moving.”

“If I don’t do that, then I’m not going to be able to help anybody,” the president added.

That sounds a lot like trickle down economics to me.

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