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Middle Class Squeeze

from 15 Statistics That Destroy Liberal Narratives by John Hawkins in Townhall:

Sentier Research, a firm led by former census officials, used census data to tabulate an estimate of the median household income — how much is earned by families at the exact middle of the nation’s income distribution. In June 2014, it found in a report issued Wednesday, the median household income was $53,891, down from $55,589 in inflation-adjusted dollars when the economic expansion began in June 2009. The economic paradox isn’t much of a paradox at all in this light: The purchasing power of the typical American family is 3.1 percent lower now than it was five years ago. No wonder people are unhappy about the economy! The benefits of rising levels of economic activity have simply not accrued to middle-income wage earners. – Neil Irwin

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Minimum Wage Reality

from 15 Statistics That Destroy Liberal Narratives by John Hawkins in Townhall:

Less than 3 percent of the workforce earns the minimum; more than 60 percent of those who do earn it get a raise within a year; more than half of minimum-wage earners are students or other part-time workers from households with average incomes of $53,000. – George Will

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The Racist War on Drugs

the wire

From John Cochrane at The Grumpy Economist,  Work and Jail

excerpt:

So, bottom left, in the last census, 19.2% of 20-24 year olds were employed, and 26.4 (!) percent were in jail. Read up, and it was not always thus. Of the cohort born in the 1930s, at the same age, 68% were employed and 6.7% were in jail — in a society and criminal justice system that was, whatever our current faults, much more overtly racist. The numbers for older men are just as shocking if you haven’t see these before.

Interesting observations fro the New York Times Review:

The war on drugs mangled, if not destroyed, any trust between residents of distressed urban communities and the authorities.

Young men like Mike often avoid girlfriends for fear that the women, for their own reasons, might turn their paramours in.

HKO

The war on drugs may have destroyed more institutions than we realized.  It may have caused worse outcomes in the minority communities than the perverse incentives of other misguided government policies.  And it may be a cause of sustained high unemployment in minroity communities.

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Worse than Apartheid

blackpoverty

Kevin Williams in National Review,  A Shocking Number:

Fifty years into the Democrats’ declaration of a war on poverty and President Kennedy’s first executive order for affirmative action, while spending $300 million a year onworthless diversity workshops and singing endless verses of “We Shall Overcome,” after enduring endless posturing from Barack Obama and the moral preening of his admirers, that is what black American families have to show for themselves: an average household net worth of $4,955. The average white household in these United States has a net worth of $110,729. Black Americans’ median net worth is less than 5 percent that of white Americans.

By way of comparison, black South Africans under apartheid had a median net worth about 6.8 percent that of white South Africans. Repeating: Black Americans are worse off relative to their white countrymen than black South Africans under apartheid were to theirs….

Everywhere it has been tried, the Democrats’ dependency agenda has been a social and economic catastrophe for black Americans — and a full-employment program for Democratic apparatchiks. This is not a conspiracy — it’s right out there in the open, every time a Democratic politician knows that he can count on 90 percent of the black vote without lifting a finger, winning the opportunity to add four more years to the 50 years of broken promises Democrats have made to black Americans, who lag their fellow countrymen on practically every social indicator. “These Negroes,” said alleged civil-rights hero Lyndon Baines Johnson, “they’re getting pretty uppity these days, and that’s a problem for us since they’ve got something now they never had before: the political pull to back up their uppity-ness. We’ve got to give them a little something — just enough to quiet them down, not enough to make a difference.”

So far, the LBJ plan seems to be working perfectly.

HKO

It seems a government program is never held accountable.

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The New Civil Rights- An Exchange of Evils

Marching In Time in The National Review

Another mark is the decrepitude of today’s civil-rights movement. The evils the movement fought — state-sponsored segregation, pervasive racial discrimination — have been vanquished. In their place are evils that are, alas, less amenable to marches. And so King’s heirs flail about. Where he spoke of a “bank of justice,” they just trade in grievances. Today Al Sharpton, whose chief political success has been to foment enough racial hatred to yield arson and murder, can present himself as a civil-rights leader without much fear of contradiction. We will have to look elsewhere for answers to the evils that now afflict Americans, and especially blacks: lousy schools, a thriving drug trade and a misguided governmental response, the collapse of marriage.