Since posting this I looked a little further in to it. Black youth unemployment for example is way above the minimal official figure and has now hit 42%, some say above 50% in some urban areas. I'm adding these comments from Paul Solman and the PBS Newshour:
Our U-7 index includes everyone in the government's U-3: everyone
who said they wanted a job and had looked for one in the past four
weeks. It also adds everyone who said they wanted one, hadn't looked in
the past four weeks, but had in the past year. (These people are
included in the government's most inclusive statistic, U-6). But we also
add people who hadn't looked in the past year but still said they
wanted a job and would take one. Finally, we add people working
part-time, but say they are looking for full-time work, like
"consultants" I know, who may have worked only one hour in the week the
government survey taker came calling, but are still tallied as
The pressure could not be resisted any more. Obama has had to say something about the Trayvon Martin murder. But it is the usual old cover up.
At the root of the special oppression of black people is the drive for cheap labor by US capitalism. Black Male median wages are $23,738 a year while for whites they are $36,875. Black male unemployment is 16.2% while it is 9.1% for the rest of the population. Think how many times you have been hearing these facts on the capitalist mass media.
These hard realities have a number of affects. They mean increased profits for the capitalists from their paying the black workers less. We are talking about hundreds of millions of dollars here going into the capitalists pockets rather than into black workers pockets. If this money was going into the pockets of black workers living conditions and lives and the crisis in so many black neighborhoods would be dramatically lessened. They are always going on about black on black violence, about the crime in places like South Chicago. Full employment, good wages and benefits and secure jobs, these are the solutions to this problem. But they are never mentioned in the capitalist media or by the capitalist politicians.
Then there is the affect on the working class as a whole. The capitalists media, and their politicians such as Obama never speak of the economic issues when they speak of racism. But this is at the centre of the issue. By focusing on the problem of racism as just a a wrong way of thinking and leaving it there the capitalists are able to con large sections of the white working class and sections of the Hispanic working class into believing the problem is with the black workers not the system. This con trick allows the capitalists to keep the white working class from fighting on the issues of their own wages and benefits and keeps these lower also. It is the problem of the blacks you see. We are doing alright. We have nothing in common. This is classic divide and rule.
When the black revolt exploded in the 1950's and 1960's US capitalism tried to drive it off the streets. The courage of the black youth and workers made this impossible. They then adjusted their strategy. They murdered the leaders they could not buy, such as Malcolm X, Martin Luther King, The leading Panthers, but at the same time they reached out and brought into the system a small layer of black middle class types whom they groomed as capitalist politicians and they are now resting on these types to keep the black workers in line. See who is taking Detroit into bankruptcy at the moment, two black capitalist types. See how many black faces are pushing the capitalist propaganda in the mass media. Obama is one of these types. A representative of the capitalist class.
This situation will not last. US capitalism has to reduce much further the living standards of its working class, black, white, Hispanic, Asian, native American, men and women, they are already doing so. At some point this assault will evoke a massive explosion from below. There will of course be some confusion at times, especially because the union leaders will not lead, but inevitably this movement will find its feet and a united working class anti racist movement will develop and challenge capitalism.
Racism is a central weapon in the hands of the US capitalist class. It keeps their profits up and helps them keep control over society
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