Black & white standards
The Washington Post (Oct. 25), in giving President Barack Obama an endorsement for another four years, wrote, “Much of the 2012 presidential campaign has dwelt on the past, but the key questions are who could better lead the country during the next four years — and, most urgently, who is likelier to put the government on a more sound financial footing.”
The suggestion appears to be that a president is not to be held accountable to his promises and record and that his record is no indication of his future behavior. Possibly, The Washington Post people believe that a black president shouldn't be held accountable to his record and campaign promises. Let's look at it.
What about Obama's pledge to cut the deficit in half during his first term? Instead, we saw the first trillion-dollar deficit ever. It has been followed by trillion-dollar deficits in every year of his administration.
What about Obama's pledge of transparency, in which his legislative proposals would be placed on the Internet days before Congress voted on them so that Americans could inspect them? Obama's major legislative proposal, ObamaCare, was enacted in such secrecy and with such speed that even members of Congress did not have time to read it. Remember that it was Rep. Nancy Pelosi who told us, “But we have to pass the (health care) bill so that you can find out what is in it.”
What about Obama's stimulus packages and promises to get unemployment under control? The Current Employment Statistics program shows that in 2008, the total number of U.S. jobs was more than 138 million, compared with 133.5 million today. As Stanford University economics professor Edward Lazear summed it up, “There hasn't been one day during the entire Obama presidency when as many Americans were working as on the day President Bush left office.”
While Obama's national job approval rating is a little less than 50 percent, among blacks his job approval is a whopping 88 percent. I'd like to ask people who approve of Obama's performance, “What has President Obama done during the past four years that you'd like to see more of in the next four years?”
Black support of politicians who have done little or nothing for their ordinary constituents is by no means unusual. Blacks are chief executives of Philadelphia, Detroit, Washington, Memphis, Atlanta, Baltimore, New Orleans, Oakland, Newark, Cleveland and Cincinnati. In most of these cities, the chief of police, the superintendent of schools and other high executives are black. But in these cities, black people suffer from the highest rates of homicides, assaults, robberies and shootings. Black high-school dropout rates in these cities are the highest in the nation. Even if a black youngster manages to graduate from high school, his reading, writing and computational proficiency is likely to be equivalent to that of a white seventh- or eighth-grader.
Last year, in reference to Obama's failed employment policies and high unemployment among blacks, Rep. Emanuel Cleaver, D-Mo., chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus, said, “If Bill Clinton had been in the White House and had failed to address this problem, we probably would be marching on the White House.”
Black people would not accept excuses upon excuses and vote to re-elect decade after decade any white politician, especially a Republican politician, who had the failed records of our big-city mayors. What that suggests about black people is not very flattering.
Walter Williams is a professor of economics at George Mason University.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- U.S. Steel looks to expand its Research & Technology Center in Munhall
- Rossi: Pirates must land Lester
- Steelers notebook: Brown calls Sanders’ comments about Roethlisberger ‘terrible’
- Temple dumps SAT, ACT scores from application process
- Beloved teacher at 3 Western Pa. schools hears from students across nation
- Steelers hold high hopes for pass defense
- After years of lobbying, Big Ben has Steelers running the no-huddle
- Surprise! Lee Supply will play for Grebb girls’ title
- Powdermill reserve summer program teaches wildlife conservation
- Pirates notebook: Trade rumors for Red Sox pitcher Lester still swirling
- Joe Greene only 2nd player in Steelers history to get number retired