Hope and Change? WaPo Highlights Left-Wing Predictions of Worsening Unemployment for Blacks, Latinos

The Washington Post publicizing a report by the liberal Economic Policy Institute (EPI), written helpfully enough that the word "liberal" isn’t used, is usually a media-bias staple for economic gearheads. But Friday’s Post report by V. Dion Haynes might be seen by other Obama-helpers in the media as an unwelcome story. The headline: "U.S. unemployment rate for blacks projected to hit 25-year high."

Unemployment for African Americans is projected to reach a 25-year high this year, according to a study released Thursday by an economic think tank, with the national rate soaring to 17.2 percent and the rates in five states exceeding 20 percent...

According to the Economic Policy Institute report, the unemployment rate for blacks is projected to reach a not-seasonally adjusted rate of 17.2 percent in the third quarter of this year, up from 15.5 percent during the same period last year. And the rate for Hispanics is forecast to jump to 13.9 percent from 12.4 percent. The study is based on Bureau of Labor Statistics data and projections from Moody's Economy.com.

EPI was the long-time policy-research home of Jared Bernstein, who is now Vice President Biden’s chief economist and one of Team Obama’s economics explainers to the media.

This was not a front-page story. It topped the "Washington Business" section on page A-20.

Why would liberal groups highlight the inconvenient picture that employment for minorities is shooting up under a minority president? It’s simple: that’s how you push for greater government "investment" in minority "uplift," and if government doesn’t solve the unemployment disparity for poor blacks and Latinos, well, they certainly can’t be accused of not trying the socialist hair of the dog (again). Haynes reported:

The results demonstrate that the Obama administration needs to do more to target groups with high unemployment rates, experts say. The Congressional Black Caucus wants the government to create training programs and jobs in low-income communities with the highest unemployment rates.

"It's like triage in an emergency room -- you take care of people who need the most help first and you help the others later," said Kai Filion, research analyst at the Economic Policy Institute. He said that the economic losses could result in a 50 percent poverty rate for black children, up from 34 percent in 2008.

"Help the others later" isn't a good analogy for the redistribution of wealth. It's more like "We'll take your money now, and you won't get it back later. We'll just come back for more Great Society attempts."

Haynes also publicized a study by the socialist group United for a Fair Economy (again, there’s no ideological label of any kind):

The economic devastation for blacks and Hispanics is underscored in another study issued this week by a Boston-based nonprofit research organization called United for a Fair Economy. "State of the Dream," its annual report issued in connection with the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday, asserted that blacks and Hispanics are three times as likely to be poor as whites; that blacks earn 62 cents for every dollar whites earn; and that the family median net worth of whites in 2007 was $170,400, compared with $27,800 for blacks and Hispanics.

"We have a long history of discriminatory policies and practices, including outright segregation, redlining, misguided urban renewal plans and predatory lending, that have prevented people of color from building up personal wealth," said Brian Miller, executive director of United for a Fair Economy and co-author of the report.

Haynes and the Post could find no place for a conservative rebuttal in this article, not even in the second-to-last paragraph. That’s why it’s helpful to avoid telling the reader this story was stuffed with liberal opinion. It’s offered as a "nonpartisan" analysis, requiring no debate.

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Tim Graham
Tim Graham
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis