Oops, 7 Days. Hey look I don't update on weekends.

Bush Economy good for blacks

Fun with numbers.

http://www.nationalreview.com/nrof_buzzcharts/buzzcharts200508190831.asp

"The current black unemployment rate is at its lowest point since the recession year of 2001. Black unemployment is also lower than the average for the Clinton years."
Permalink Jim Rankin 
August 19th, 2005
Lots of jobs at Burger King. I get it.
Permalink Flasher T 
August 19th, 2005
More than there were under Clinton, evidently.
Permalink Jim Rankin 
August 19th, 2005
quite the right leaning news site you got there.

headlines:

<<Victor Davis Hanson: The Left&#8217;s scathing rhetoric bites back. 08/19 8:15 a.m.

Michael Ledeen: Take a look at Iran. 08/19 10:08 a.m.

Nicholas J. Xenakis: Will &#8220;Democracy in Iraq&#8221; be written? 08/19 1:34 p.m.

SUPREME COURT

Bench Memos: Your hearings prep center.

Robert H. Bork: Can John Roberts restore the constitutional order? 08/19 8:19 a.m.

POLITICS

Rich Lowry: A Hawaii proposal strikes at our integrity as a nation. 08/19 8:12 a.m.

Hadley Arkes: David Gelernter is wrong about Dobson. 08/19 8:11 a.m.

THE LEFT

Byron York: Low ratings and a scandal hit Air America. 08/19 9:09 a.m.

GUN CONTROL

John R. Lott Jr.: Canada shoots at U.S. guns. 08/19 8:17 a.m.

Jennifer Gratz: We&#8217;re in the fight to the finish. 08/18 8:19 a.m.

IMMIGRATION

Mark Krikorian: Dems can only pay lip service to border control. 08/19 8:22 a.m.
>>
Permalink Kenny 
August 19th, 2005
Kenny,

We already had the thread about how the source of a study/opinion piece/article/chart/etc. does not invalidate the points and conclusions presented therein.

But, thanks for the information, anyway. Will you next be informing us of the pope's religious affiliation?
Permalink Jim Rankin 
August 19th, 2005
" quite the right leaning news site you got there. "

Do you think a left leaning site would report this? Of course they wouldn't, nor would they report anything that might smell pro-Bush. This is the glorious world of extreme bias and partisanship that we live in, where nothing can ever be objectively viewed.
Permalink Dennis Forbes 
August 19th, 2005
<<We already had the thread about how the source of a study/opinion piece/article/chart/etc. does not invalidate the points and conclusions presented therein.>>

it does bring the premises into question, however.
Permalink Kenny 
August 19th, 2005
<< This is the glorious world of extreme bias and partisanship that we live in, where nothing can ever be objectively viewed>>

yep. its all bs. we just choose the kind we like to smell.
Permalink Kenny 
August 19th, 2005
Flasher T hits the nail on the head... while we can't assume anything one way or another, unemployment rates are meaningless compared to median income (adjusted for inflation). If the unemployment rate and average salary for blacks are both cut in half, then is that good or bad?
Permalink Tail of the "g" 
August 19th, 2005
While I'll agree that higher-paying jobs are better, isn't it better to have a job than to not have a job?

Philo
Permalink Philo 
August 19th, 2005
"We already had the thread about how the source of a study/opinion piece/article/chart/etc. does not invalidate the points and conclusions presented therein."

The thread in question didn't really resolve that issue:
http://discuss.joelonsoftware.com/default.asp?off.9.140279.86
Permalink Almost H. Anonymous 
August 19th, 2005
Philo: yes, if you're only looking at those two data pieces. But the difference between the Clinton average for blacks (10%) and the current number (9.5%) is 0.5%. Let's assume for the sake of argument that the 90% during the Clinton years all had well-paying jobs. Then 2.5% of them lost their jobs during W's first term. Then they, and 0.5% more, got new jobs but at minimum wage.

In that (VERY hypothetical) situation, life has slightly improved for 0.5% of the population but has drastically degraded for 2.5%.

This is, of course, just a hypothetical situation where "having a job is better than no job" is not accurate in the big picture. But it's possible, and without income statistics the unemployment rate is essentially meaningless.
Permalink Tail of the "g" 
August 19th, 2005
Ok, that thread didn't resolve the issue.

Logic and common sense do.
Permalink Jim Rankin 
August 19th, 2005
Yes, but not in the way you seem to think.
Permalink Almost H. Anonymous 
August 19th, 2005
Oh yeah, like it is definitely due to the Bush economy since he's in office at the time of the stats. Yet many cite Daddy's econ policy for the good sides of the Clinton era boom.

If it's your preference to stick your head in an isolationist sand pit, have at it.
Permalink I am Jack's weekend wings 
August 19th, 2005
This seems to be the latest data available for median incomes in the U.S.:

http://www.census.gov/Press-Release/www/releases/archives/income_wealth/002484.html

"Real median income did not change between 2002 and 2003 for non-Hispanic white households (about $48,000), black households (about $30,000) or Asian households (about $55,500)."

I imagine it did decline during the recession precipitated by the bursting of the Clinton stock market bubble.
Permalink Jim Rankin 
August 19th, 2005
Mr. weekend wings,

I'm sure there was an insightful insight into economic policy in there somewhere, but I seem to have missed it. Sorry.
Permalink Jim Rankin 
August 19th, 2005
Because you have to know Clinton was responsible for the overinflated bullshit wall street was spewing.
Permalink I am Jack's weekend wings 
August 19th, 2005
I am Jack's possessive tendencies makes an important point. To be clear, I'm not assigning credit or blame for unemployment or income rates... I don't know enough about economics to do so in anything resembling an intelligent manner.
Permalink Tail of the "g" 
August 19th, 2005
So what is your post meant as? Reason for blacks to support Bush? Something good Bush has done? What? Because
Because I don't see how it amounts to Jack Shit other than more blind support for the chronically blind.
Permalink I am Jack's weekend wings 
August 19th, 2005
Bush economy BAD for blacks.

look at the FULL study here:

http://www.epinet.org/content.cfm/webfeatures_snapshots_20050406

rather than read a conservative article and take it as truth, it may be more helpful to read the full study in its entirety and get the full context:

"In the early 1990s, the overall employment rate began to climb by around the 10th quarter, and the African American rate follows the overall rate fairly closely. In the current case, however, employment rates have yet to trend up very convincingly, and African American rates actually have continued to fall. Almost four years after the recession began in March 2001, employment rates remain down by 2 percentage points overall and almost twice that much (3.7 points) for African Americans."
Permalink ... But What Do I Know 
August 19th, 2005
"By the first quarter of 2005, the overall African American unemployment rate was 10.6%, while the overall rate--5.3%"

Hm. that doesn't sound particularily good for blacks...
Permalink ... But What Do I Know 
August 19th, 2005
++"possessive"

I think you meant obsessive. I don't see myself as very possessive. Obsessive I understand, but I prefer passionate. It rings better with the ladies.
Permalink I am Jack's weekend wings 
August 19th, 2005
"Hm. that doesn't sound particularily good for blacks..."

National Review has the black unemployment number at 9.5%. Which is much higher than for whites (4.3%), but the GAP between them has shrunk from the Clinton years (see chart linked to original post). Nowhere does the epinet article specifically refute the fact that the unemployment gap has narrowed from the average over the Clinton years.
Permalink Jim Rankin 
August 19th, 2005
I am Jack's: I was referring to your choice of monikers.
Permalink Tail of the "g" 
August 19th, 2005
I suppose the next step is to find the sources for NR/epinet's data. I don't see any citations in either piece.

I'm assuming the NR data is more recent, however, considering the epinet piece was published in April.
Permalink Jim Rankin 
August 19th, 2005
Aha!

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.nr0.htm

"The jobless rate for blacks declined from 10.3 to 9.5 percent over the month."

So unemployment for blacks just dropped a good bit last month, which probably also explains why NR is choosing this moment to publish stats on black unemployment.

Also:

"The employ-ment-population ratio has trended up in recent months."

Which seems to contradict those who say the only reason unemployment numbers are down is because people continue to drop out of the work force.
Permalink Jim Rankin 
August 19th, 2005
One finds it odd that the study in question chose to compare a single data point against the mean of a different data set. An analysis of trends would demonstrate a stronger defense of the hypothesis. Why was this analysis not reported in the referenced study?
Permalink Devil's Advocate 
August 19th, 2005
"Why was this analysis not reported in the referenced study?"

Because it's not a study. It's a table and a few paragraphs on an opinion site trying to show their guy in the most flattering light.
Permalink Jim Rankin 
August 19th, 2005
"Isn't it better to have a job than to not have a job?"

It depends. Work in fields with malathion and no health insurance for $12 a day? Work in uranium mine with no health benefits for $100 a day? Or learn to find food in dumpsters. Hmmm.... well with the dumpsters option you may live longer.
Permalink Rich Rogers 
August 19th, 2005
I got off the vanilla train downtown today. Saw a black guy holding out his change cup with a new sign: "Bushonomics victim. Please help."

I have not heard or seen a reference to Bushonomics yet until today. I was surprised to see that the economy is being blamed on someone too stupid to have any real intended effect.
Permalink sharkfish 
August 19th, 2005
sharkfish! Welcome to the thread! I knew you would be unable to stay away! :)
Permalink Jim Rankin 
August 19th, 2005
Stupid non-Chicagoan question - why the "vanilla" train?

Philo
Permalink Philo 
August 19th, 2005
That's actually a very interesting chart. It looks like the gap between black and white unemployment was lowest around 1998 - 2000, then when unemployment went up during the recession black unemployment kept going up for awhile after white unemployment leveled off. It looks like recently black unemployment started coming down again relative to white unemployment, explaining the timing of the NR piece.

So a reasonable interpretation would be that the employment picture relative to whites is starting to improve for blacks, but not yet to the levels of the late 90s.
Permalink Jim Rankin 
August 20th, 2005
" Stupid non-Chicagoan question - why the "vanilla" train?"

That's just my name for the set of trains that go through suburbia that are not Chicago Transportation Authority trains. For some reason, there are fewer non-whites on the vanilla train (Metra system) and the vanilla trains have fewer riders, although they get more tax money.

As a result, vanilla trains are way better maintained and are more like the BART system in San Francisco. The CTA trains (include the L) are rattle-y, nasty trains that are clean only if they are certain routes.

http://www.dailynorthwestern.com/vnews/display.v/ART/2005/04/21/42673a3ad7553

"The Mass Transit Committee issued a report last week stating the 1983 formula does not provide appropriate funding. For example, 55 percent of sales taxes generated in suburban Cook County for transit go to Metra, 30 percent to CTA and the rest to Pace. But Metra's share of all morning transit passengers in the region is only 22 percent, while CTA's share is 60 percent, according to the report."

To be fair, the south side of Chicago has a Metra train. I can only assume there are more people of color on those routes, since the neighborhoods have a higher percentage of such population.

It just feels so wierd to ride one train, a few blocks from the other, and have it be such a vastly different experience.

So I gave my experience a name.
Permalink sharkfish 
August 20th, 2005
Ah. I understand. I had to ride the chocolate bus to elementary school. It can be very jarring.

Philo
Permalink Philo 
August 20th, 2005
LOVE this line from the link:

"When corporations buy software in bulk through agreements with manufacturers, they currently do not have to pay sales tax, Cardenas said."

I'm curious why this should be so and why it should be singled out for mention. Surely there are even bigger "corporate welfare" programs that could be cut?
Permalink trollop 
August 20th, 2005
" Ah. I understand. I had to ride the chocolate bus to elementary school. It can be very jarring.

Philo"


Well, I'm just going to take you seriously and mention the fact that I rode the chocolate bus to elementary school, too. My skin is very very light so I experienced some similar battles to what you may have experienced as a minority.

I'm a minority among minorities!!! Now how much more oppressed can I be??!!!

Har-har.
Permalink sharkfish 
August 20th, 2005
The set up...
>Stupid non-Chicagoan question - why the "vanilla"
>train?
>
>Philo
... the waiting...
>Ah. I understand. I had to ride the chocolate bus
>to elementary school. It can be very jarring.
>
>Philo
... punchline!!!

Uh, did you stay up all night thinking up that one, Philo?

[g,d,r]
Dude, You're Lame
Permalink Dude, You're Lame 
August 21st, 2005
Uh, no - I didn't want to presume what she meant by "vanilla train" and I *did* take an all-black bus to school in 2nd grade. (I don't know if it was an artifact of forced busing or from specific geographic area- that was just how it was)

I was severely harassed on that bus - it was the reason I started riding a bike to school.

Philo
Permalink Philo 
August 22nd, 2005
Understood. My apologies for taking your quotes out of context then.
Permalink Dude, I'm Lame 
August 22nd, 2005

This topic was orginally posted to the off-topic forum of the
Joel on Software discussion board.

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