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Friday, August 03, 2007

Ohio's Bizzyblog Spots An Important Nugget: U.S. Black Unemployment Fell Sharply

CINCINNATI (TDB) -- Bizzyblog's Tom Blumer is highlighting a positive development in the just-released U.S. employment data: The jobless rate among black Americans and teens has declined. Still too high. But still a needed move in the right direction.

Bizzyblog mentions the news in a long takeout on the overall jobs picture, and wonders if employers who formerly would have hired undocumented aliens are now employing native-born citizens. He theorizes the failure of an immigration bill in Congress last month was a factor that could have resulted in the dip:

"Here are a couple of interesting numbers -- black/African American and teenaged unemployment fell pretty sharply -- from 8.5% to 8% and 15.8% to 15.2% respectively. Both percentages are still higher than anyone would like to see them. But, as noted here previously, those figures have, up to now, stayed stubbornly high relative to previous economic expansions. Could late June's shamnesty-bill failure have influenced this by making employers less likely to hire illegals, forcing them to find relatively unskilled citizens to do the work instead."

The data pose other questions: How will the fact that more lower income minorities have jobs impact social issues such as crime, prison construction, health care, child support, drug abuse and on and on? Employment equates with stability. Simply put, if people can find work, they are probably less likely to find trouble.


  1. Good points, Bill. I would think both numbers have to come down quite a bit more, and stay there for quite a while, for there to be a meaningful impact on crime, etc.

    Would also be interesting to see how much crime might go down if an out-migration of illegals ever took hold as a result of blacks and teens getting unskilled jobs they might have often been denied access to thanks to cheaper illegal labor.

  2. Bizzyblog (Tom) --

    I do believe that when more people are included in the economy, the nation benefits across the board. Nice work finding that overlooked, it seems to me, detail about the minority ememployment rate.

    On immigration: I think we probably need to be more aggressive about enforcing the measures we now have on the books. But I also think we have to do something about the people who are here, the ones who arrived while the gov't was looking the other way. And the thought of mass roundups and deportations makes me uneasy.

    Yes, they are undocumented. I think I would be inclined to allow those who can show some solid semblances of a new life here -- at minimum family, jobs, education, property, or all four in combination and more -- to stay. But I would probably design those "solid semblances" to be quite picky.