As Public Sector Sheds Jobs, Blacks Are Hit Hardest

Timothy Williams, New York Times, November 28, 2011

{snip}

Mr. Buckley is one of tens of thousands of once solidly middle-class African-American government workers–bus drivers in Chicago, police officers and firefighters in Cleveland, nurses and doctors in Florida–who have been laid off since the recession ended in June 2009. Such job losses have blunted gains made in employment and wealth during the previous decade and undermined the stability of neighborhoods where there are now fewer black professionals who own homes or who get up every morning to go to work.

{snip} About one in five black workers have public-sector jobs, and African-American workers are one-third more likely than white ones to be employed in the public sector.

“The reliance on these jobs has provided African-Americans a path upward,” said Robert H. Zieger, emeritus professor of history at the University of Florida, and the author of a book on race and labor. “But it is also a vulnerability.”

{snip}

Jobless rates among blacks have consistently been about double those of whites. In October, the black unemployment rate was 15.1 percent, compared with 8 percent for whites. {snip}

{snip}

The central role played by government employment in black communities is hard to overstate. African-Americans in the public sector earn 25 percent more than other black workers, and the jobs have long been regarded as respectable, stable work for college graduates, allowing many to buy homes, send children to private colleges and achieve other markers of middle-class life that were otherwise closed to them.

{snip}

But during the past year, while the private sector has added 1.6 million jobs, state and local governments have shed at least 142,000 positions, according to the Labor Department. Those losses are in addition to 200,000 public-sector jobs lost in 2010 and more than 500,000 since the start of the recession.

{snip}

The layoffs are not expected to end any time soon. The United States Postal Service, where about 25 percent of employees are black, is considering eliminating 220,000 positions in order to stay solvent, and areas with large black populations–from urban Detroit to rural Jefferson County, Miss.–are struggling with budget problems that could also lead to mass layoffs.

{snip}

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  • Anonymous

    Newspaper headlines for 12/21/12.

    “The endof the world is here, blacks hit hardest.”

    Cry me a river!

  • white is right, black is whack

    Many blacks seem to have only made their money by government: government jobs, welfare, section 8 housing, EEOC, the bogus ‘black farmers suits’ and more. They aren’t as successful in the private sector because they many aren’t smart enough or disciplined enough to make it without government help. The liberals coddling them is a big factor as well.

  • Anonymous

    Harder times still are coming to the blacks in this country as the whites increasing become the minority and the hispanics the majority. The last 45+ years were the Golden Age for blacks in this country as over $17 trillion and still counting was spent on them in every imaginable manner. It is very questionable how much the blacks can maintain this artificially inflated “progress” due to massive white support.

  • Stephen Trask

    For those who read Paul Kersey over at SBPDL, this topic is one of his favorites. The Black Middle is an artificial creation, due to the liberal elites desire to find public jobs that require little work or the chance of messing things up.

    Sadly, in times of austerity, there the first to go. Hence the end of the “Black Middle Class.”

    http://tinyurl.com/765l3v7

  • angry mike

    Funny how in Ohio issue 5 was voted down. This issue would have saved gov jobs by limiting collective bargaining and closing a 8+million dollar hole. Instead there is still a hole in the budget witch will cause more layoffs in that sector. Union officials bamboozled the pubic. Now we will see larger classrooms and smaller police and fire departments.

  • Anonymous

    Comet destroys earth. Women and minorities disproportionately impacted.

  • ice

    The loss of jobs in the public sector isn’t the only concern of public employees. Their pensions are beginning to take hits right now. The ones already retired are being told they might have to take a cut, and the ones in the present work force are being forced to contribute more to their retirement fund.

    Some states are fighting tooth and nail to try to get enough money so they won’t have to abolish pensions altogether for lack of funds and require 100% contributions to employee retirement accounts.

    But they could well be fighting a losing battle. The situation is getting dire.

    California, I believe, will be the first to have to renege on pensions, because of their outlandishly high pension payments to retirees.

    Probably many other states will be forced to follow suit. If the government thinks they have seen violent protests now, they won’t believe their eyes when they look out their windows and see people they once worked with hammering on their doors, turning over cop cars, and heading to the castle with pitchforks, because their only means of survival has been eliminated or severely reduced.

  • Anonymous

    Duh. Blacks get jobs in government thanks to the government’s racial agenda. It’s a form of working welfare.

  • Anonymous

    I’m going to cry!!!!!

    Not.

    Take note, residents of urban areas, things will get ugly. 200,000+ laid off postal workers, plus untold hundreds of thousands of laid off state and local workers. Long-term unemployed blacks start doing unpleasant things, especially if their EBTs get cut, and that’s also coming. Be ready!

    But any amount of urban unrest is cheaper than continuing to spend trillions of dollars to maintain the Potemkin village that is the black middle class. The worst riot you can dream of might do a billion dollars in damage, and that’s cheaper than what it takes to maintain the fictional black middle class for a week. Ok, I’d rather pay for the riot damage as a one-time expense than to keep paying for this charade of a black middle class for my entire life.

  • White, Jewish, and Proud

    “About one in five black workers have public-sector jobs, and African-American workers are one-third more likely than white ones to be employed in the public sector.”

    That’s certainly true in my neck of the woods. They are almost all to the man or woman truly among the most surly, inept, arrogant, and white-hating people it would ever be your misfortune to meet. From bus drivers to water department workers, teachers to City Hall hustlers and courthouse flunkies — they are virtually all black.

    One considers oneself fortunate to receive even a modicum of comptetency and service when encountering them.

    Now, I’m not a hard hearted person, but quite frankly their exit from these positions is for the greater public good.

  • HH

    I like the term Anon # 8 has used, “working welfare.” That is an apt description for sure!

    This article, as with many just like it, prove once and for all what many us us have been saying for years – namely that this much-vaunted “Black Middle-Class” was a fraud right from the start! This house-of-cards was doomed to collapse as it was a phoney as the proverbial three-dollar bill. Blacks who dominated these make-work positions, or were given choice jobs they were rarely properly qualified for were the very core of this fake middle-class.

    The fraudulent Affirmative-Action society has begun to come apart – of course Blacks are “hit hardest.” It is they who benefitted most from it! But the party is over, at least for now. Reality has a nasty way of coming to the surface even through the murkiest muck and most mendacious frauds!

  • John Engelman

    The government pioneered the use of intelligence testing in the military, and with civil service tests. Then it eased standards to achieve diversity and inclusion. This in turn has reduced confidence in the government.

    Private sector employers occasionally pay lip service to affirmative action. Nevertheless, they know that it is important to hire those who can perform adequately. Consequently more of them are using intelligence testing. They do not ease standards. If you can’t pass you don’t get the job.

  • Mike H.

    I’m assuming when they say ‘public sector jobs’ are being cut, they’re referring to the useless welfare jobs that anyone with an IQ above 50 could do.

    After all, my local fire department is really trying to find able bodied people – there were ads all over my radio last week!

  • chuck

    Has anyone ever had the misfortune to deal with a black bureaucrat? They take stupid and lazy to a whole new level. Aside from an inbred inability to speak english properly and a non-existent work ethic the only thing they know is gibs-me-dat.

  • Anonymous

    Blacks aren’t hit by job losses at any time. They receive Welfare from craddle to grave, and only go “to work” to break up their day.

    They can lie, steal, and assault co-workers, without any penalty at all. But if the Company folds, most likely due to the fact of being top heavy with blacks and browns, then the blacks receive their “Unemployment benefits”, and once that runs out, they’re back on Welfare.

    This is the black work cycle in America, today. Don’t worry about them, they will always have money.

    If the Welfare checks are slow in coming, they can always get some quick spending cash by Mugging a few White people.

  • rjp

    The central role played by government employment in black communities is hard to overstate.

    What about the role blacks play in government?

    1. Sloth

    2. Malfeasance

    3. Theft

  • Number Cruncher

    According to the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), Blacks make up 10% of the Relevant Civilian Labor (RCLF) (i.e. jobs in the civilian labor force which would also be in the federal government labor force) yet make up 17.8% of the Federal Workforce (FWC). The feds would have to shed nearly 150,000 black employees (of 373,000 not counting postal service) to meet diversity in the federal workplace. The Veterans Administration (VA) (23.8% Black with RCLF at 9.8%) would have to shed 31,000 of 74,000 blacks to be truly diverse. The Equal Opportunity Employment Commission (EEOC) which dictates and extorts government offices and private companies to be “more diverse” has 2,500 federal employees of which 1,050 (41.5%) are black and which would have to shed almost 800 black employees to meet its appropriate diversity share of 8.3% (210)(BTW, over 50% of the feds in the civil rights/EEO business are Black). Of ALL federal agencies, only one does exceed the RCLF numbers assigned to it and that is the Department of the Interior (DoI). It should be 9.2% black (7,400) and is, instead, 5.6% (4,500) black.

    Guess which Department/Agency of Federal Government was the only one attacked by the EEOC and the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice? Hint; it wasn’t VA with 23.8% Blacks, or the Social Security Administration with its 28% Black workforce (RCLF 9.3%), the Department of the Treasury with its 24% (27,000) Black workforce (RCLF 9.4% or 10,500) or HUD with its 38% (3,700) Black workforce (RCLF 8.2% or 800).

    Are Blacks being unfairly blamed for a decline of competence in the workforce? No. When the feds were forced to get rid of the gender and race neutral civil service exam in 1981 because Blacks couldn’t pass it, it set the stage for the dumbing-down of all government employees. When a test like the NYFD exam or Chicago Police exam has to be so simplified so that 97% of whites pass it in order to find enough Blacks to pass it, and then training needs to be dumbed- down so they can pass it, there is something wrong and we all suffer. Rather than pull people up to a standard, we simply lowered the standards at the expense of more qualified people and the quality services taxpayers are paying through the nose for (especially when federal organizations have to hire contractors to do the jobs that Black federal workers are supposed to be capable of doing themselves but can’t). It has gone on for far too long. I have no sympathy.

  • Bon, From the Land of Babble

    California, I believe, will be the first to have to renege on pensions, because of their outlandishly high pension payments to retirees.

    — ice

    California is on an unsustainable course. Public pension obligations are a part of what is sinking the state, there is plenty more. California is beholden to 2.6 million retired government workers whose three large, public-pension funds are $535 billion in the hole.

    My own pension, CalSTRS, the California teachers’ retirement system, is underfunded by $42.6 billion dollars and, again, FTR, California teachers contribute 8% of their pay to CalSTRS and typically draw 55-65% of their salaries when they retire, not 90% as do some other California public employees.

    California’s oppressive taxes and, job-killing also doom the state: California’s sales-tax rate, 8.25 percent, is the nation’s highest. The highly progressive income tax, which kicks in at taxable incomes of $43,000 doesn’t allow you to deduct your federal taxes, as some states with income taxes do. There is also a surcharge of 1% on taxable incomes over $1 million to fund mental health programs.

    What did I hear on the news this morning? Governor Brown’s proposed solution to help close California’s 25 deficit: A 1/2% increase in the state sales tax and a new tax “on the rich” (exact words on newscast), those with taxable incomes over $250,000.

    Tax the Rich? Where have I heard that cliche before? Well, maybe Brown thinks taxing the rich will work THIS TIME (not like those “rich” can’t pack their bags and flee California, which they’re doing in droves along with California’s businesses.

    Taxes are a big reason that residents and businesses are fleeing the state; in 2008, 135,000 more people left California than moved here. If California keeps raising taxes, it can expect the outmigration of its tax base to increase.

    Then there are still the issues of the Third World-ization of California, a decreasing quality of life, poor schools, one-party dominance in the statehouse and high cost of living. But that is for another post.

    Bon

  • Bilbo Baggins

    My suggestion would be for all whites to be summarily terminated from the IRS. Their positions should be filled by blacks, the more incompetent the better (for us).

  • Dom

    So you could describe US government as racketeering organization which take money away from whites and give it to blacks to artificially boost their standard…so this is not racism? vow…”There are some ideas so absurd that only an intellectual could believe them.” George Orwell

  • The Bobster

    About one in five black workers have public-sector jobs, and African-American workers are one-third more likely than white ones to be employed in the public sector.

    ______________

    Many of the White government workers, who had to pass an actual test to be hired, are nearing retirement age. Once that occurs, you will find that blacks will be far more than 33% more likely to be gubmint “workers”. In fact, it will be difficult to find a straight White Christian male government worker.

  • Gen. Lee

    “The reliance on these jobs has provided African-Americans a path upward,” said Robert H. Zieger.

    Just look at the language being used here! The “reliance” on government jobs by blacks. Silly me, I thought a job was something you worked at or “did” but for many blacks it’s something to be relied upon. I don’t know if this Ziegler guy gets it or not, but the language he uses helps tell the story.

    “areas with large black populations…are struggling with budget problems that could also lead to mass layoffs.”

    Ahh yes, another nugget of truth, for those who have their eyes even half-open.

  • Anonymous

    Every time one has to deal with a black in the courthouse to either see a judge or pay a ticket, the black is rude, arrogant, condescending, mean…no sympathy for the blacks. They even give hostile looks to whites at places for social services. You even see Muslims there. Whatever happened to hiring Americans. This is why the public sector alienates people.

  • ice

    18 — Bon, From the Land of Babble wrote at 10:40 AM on December ” ice

    “California is on an unsustainable course. Public pension obligations are a part of what is sinking the state, there is plenty more. California is beholden to 2.6 million retired government workers whose three large, public-pension funds are $535 billion in the hole.”

    That’s a pretty good overall recap of part of Californias’s financial problems. I knew it was pretty bad, but when the shortfall is put in actaul dollar amounts it looks even more devestating.

  • Anon

    The tenor of many of these comments is disturbing. Sure, we’ve all dealt with surly, incompetent blacks at the local DMV and the like, but there are also plenty of blacks trying to do their jobs to the best of their ability and keep their families fed.

    If they’re not going to be on welfare, they need jobs, and those jobs are likelier to be delivering mail or collecting trash, than designing software or performing surgery.

    To scorn the welfare blacks for indolence, yet cheer job losses among black workers is pretty disingenuous…what are they to do, crawl under a rock and die?

  • Anonymous

    If they’re not going to be on welfare, they need jobs, and those jobs are likelier to be delivering mail or collecting trash, than designing software or performing surgery.

    To scorn the welfare blacks for indolence, yet cheer job losses among black workers is pretty disingenuous…what are they to do, crawl under a rock and die?

    The problem with a lot of blacks-not all of them,and not necessarily a majority,but definitely a significant number-is that their inflated sense of self esteem leads them to believe that they can perform surgery or design software, or any other job that requires high intelligence,long training, and-a lot of the time-long stretches of practical experience. Or that they could if the Evil Blue Eyed Devils weren’t keeping them down.

    And they can’t.

  • sommers

    I’ve been reading about California going broke for several years now. At least several years. They can’t print money, so where are they getting it?

    I am certain Feinstein, Boxer, Waxman and Brown and the like, fully expect this administration to bail them out. To print money and send it their way making the rest of the country participate in the “program”. They show little or no restraint on spending, it’s the only conclusion I can come to. (bailout)

  • aral

    The tenor of many of these comments is disturbing. Sure, we’ve all dealt with surly, incompetent blacks at the local DMV and the like, but there are also plenty of blacks trying to do their jobs to the best of their ability and keep their families fed.

    For all my bad experiences with them, I agree. A lot of the black bus drivers are polite and helpful. Except for the fact that they are ALL black (occasional hisp or white) they’re not bad. And many of the gov workers do try and do their jobs. I’ve worked quite a bit in the govt sector, and many blacks are reasonably decent. Nevertheless, I do note the lower competency.

  • Michael C. Scott

    Perhaps the inevitable public-sector cuts will end what one of my friends has for years called “institutionalized incompetence”. The United States used to be a meritocracy; it’d be nice to see it become one again.