Friday, January 22, 2021

Senator Bernie Sanders and African Americans Have Something in Common – JOBS!

March 24, 2016 by  
Filed under Business, Money, News, Opinion, Politics, Weekly Columns

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The African American community has something in common with Senator Bernie Sanders and his presidential bid. Many of us are just ignorant or uninformed when it comes to this connection. Secretary Hillary Clinton has promised to continue the current administration practices of understating the African American unemployment rates which was started by her husband, former President Bill Clinton. Clinton in 1994 designed a new way of counting the unemployed, through his labor secretary, which would end up giving his administration a lower official unemployment rate. Every administration since, including the Republican administration of George W. Bush, has embraced this political maneuver of under counting the unemployed because it favors the administ2016-blackvote-sen-bernie-sandersration in power. By saying she will embrace this administration’s current policies, Clinton now joins former administrations in this horrible practice, if she becomes president.

You must understand, this practice of understating the unemployment rates damages blacks way more than it damages whites or any other worker groups simply because the black unemployment rate is so much higher. It’s confounding that the African American community allows black political pressure groups and the Congressional Black Caucus to gloss over this issue. Understating the nation’s unemployment rates is a stab in the back to all African Americans!

If the focus of Black America’s protests were directed at changing the unemployment numbers as they are currently being presented, the economic burden of African Americans will be revealed and brought out in the open. This exposure would also open the eyes of many whites who know instinctively that something is not quite right with this economy, as they line-up behind strong man, Donald Trump. They are rejecting these traditional politicians who endorse this awful and deplorable practice. The true rate of national unemployment is 9.7 percent as stated by the u-6 category ( ), which counts those who currently are neither working nor looking for work but indicate that they want and are available for a job and have looked for work sometime in the past 12 months and persons employed part time for economic reasons who want and are available for full-time work but have had to settle for a part-time schedule.

If the true rate of national unemployment is 9.7 percent then the African American unemployment rate which is normally almost double that of the national rate is easily 17 percent or higher. These high unemployment rates are the heavy burden African Americans have been carrying on their backs for almost the last ten years. With the black unemployment rate established at 17 percent, the unemployment rate of our young people, between 17 and 20 years who have done all the right things in most instances by studying hard, staying out of trouble and graduating from high school, is conservatively 50 percent! These youngsters are stressed out and have no clue why they cannot find a decent job as they idly sit around our communities. Wake up people, these traditional politicians who want to stay in office at any cost are literally playing with our lives, and playing us for suckers. And they are getting away with it!

Once this horrendous practice of discounting human beings when it comes to unemployment is completely exposed, the drumbeats and protests to effect major change in our economic system will become louder and louder, leading to discussions of job creation plans. As long as you cover up the economic woes of American workers, the AA community included, you in effect say, “there is no problem, thus the unemployed become invisible when it comes to media coverage.” In reality, Senator Sanders has spoken out on this issue while the establishment candidate, Secretary Hillary Clinton has been silent as expected ( ).

But Bernie Sanders does not go far enough and this is the reason in part why he is losing to Clinton. African Americans are Sanders’ ally and not his enemy. The key to black America’s support is the same key that gets Sanders white America’s support. Bernie Sanders is not truly addressing the anxiety in an area that is critical to the lives of blacks and whites and that is, “Its the economy stupid” (remember Bill Clinton’s slogan during his presidential run). Senator Sanders can not beat Secretary Clinton by getting into a one on one argument about the haves and the have nots and about the one to ten percent aided by Wall Street who are sending this country down the tubes.

That tactic works with a certain part of the electorate, primarily white and educated. While I am not suggesting that is not a good tactic for that part of the electorate, because Sanders must attract those people to win; he has to also pivot and cut into that part of the electorate which is looking for granular change, such as African Americans who want to see a real plan of job creation and a plan for lowering their unemployment rates. That is where he can beat Clinton handily and move African Americans into his camp!

With all of Clinton’s rhetoric, when you detail it out and listen to her closely – she does not have a specific plan to create jobs and get the economy rolling again. She talks about, I am going to allocate a billion or two in grants to put 16-19 year olds to work (handing block grant money to her cronies to redistribute who will take their cut off the top) or we are going to rebuild our infrastructure or we are going to stop sending our jobs over seas…but nothing specific. However, what Clinton has is an organization and a machine that is prepared to work and get her into the White House. Bernie Sanders needs a detailed and specific job creation plan. Then he can pivot and say of Clinton that she does not have anything specific economically speaking to put this country back to work but the same old tried and failed plans of the past ( which is true). He then overcomes the attributes of the machine.

Finally, Bernie needs African Americans to win and African Americans need Bernie Sanders to man-up with a consumer oriented job creation plan, as opposed to an infrastructure spending plan, that we can rally around (“The Fix This Time” fills that bill!). Read it and see if you agree! If he does not address this shortcoming, the Clinton machine will beat him in Pennsylvania, New York, California, the West, and other states. While the window for him to do this is closing, he still has time to present such a plan!

Staff Writer; James Davis

This talented brother is a graduate of Florida A. and M. University(FAMU), a former stockbroker, and a human rights activist who resides in Sanford, Florida. He was awarded the prestigious Governor Haydon Burns Scholarship to attend FAMU and while at FAMU was awarded the first Martin Luther King Scholarship. He is also author of three books, among them are “The Fix This Time,” Expanding Social Security Benefits to Create Jobs and Spur Demand( ) and “Hey…God’s Talking To You,” The Study Book ( ).

He can be reached through his blog @, (


4 Responses to “Senator Bernie Sanders and African Americans Have Something in Common – JOBS!”
  1. James Davis says:


    Thanks for the video – I had not seen it. Nevertheless, it really gives me a keen understanding of Senator Bernie Sanders’ position on Social Security. However, he is not being quite truthful when he says Social Security is not broke. Social Security has had it funds drained by every presidential administration starting with Ronald Reagan in 1986. What he is referring to by saying Social Security is not broke is that when these presidential administrations “borrowed” yours and my payroll taxes from the Social Security trust fund, they left IOU’s stating that they had borrowed these funds in the trillions of dollars with a promise to redeem those IOU’s. Each one of these administrations from Reagan to Bush ( George W.) came to the end of their term in office without them redeeming those IOU’s. And the truth of the matter is, a president only has control of funding during his term in office. So, if he did not do anything about his administration’s IOU’s before his term came to an end, that president essentially left the Social Security trust fund holding a worthless piece of paper. And in the present day situation, the federal government is running deficits and does not want to honor the IOU’s of past presidential administrations and would rather see benefits cut rather than pay back the $2.8 trillion dollars or so in borrowed money from the Social Security trust fund. So what the Senator is saying, as long as he is in Congress, he will see to it that the federal government honors those IOU’s. That is a more honest statement than to say that Social Security has $2.8 trillion dollars. Once he leaves Congress, and new Congress men and women come into office – who knows what their position will be.

    Senator Bernie Sanders is an elitist when it comes to Social Security as are most folks who have high incomes. We are in a slow growth economy with a black unemployment rate at 17% and a national rate at 9.7%. People are not working. And for many of those who are working, they are in low paying jobs, with draconian work hours that require in a lot of instances that they work on the weekends. The reason these employers can get away with paying lower wages with these demanding hours is because of high unemployment and an over supply of labor. The nation is suffering from sluggish or really a lack of consumer demand – consumer purchasing power is at an all time low.

    What would improve consumer purchasing power is an injection of consistent funds from the consumer because the consumer is 70% of the purchasing power of this economy. If the consumer at the time he retires and gets full benefits from the Social Security trust fund were able to control 10%-13% of his Social Security principal, it would be the money needed to ratchet up the purchasing power of the consumer which would pull us out of this downturn. You see it would not leave the retiree indigent because he still has 87-90% of his or her income from Social Security still coming to him monthly. But what this does do, is that it gives the average retiree control depending on the amount of his Social Security income of $20,000.00 to $40,000.00 dollars which he or she can use as they see fit to make their retirement better. The money could be used to pay off bills or even make investments. Yes, it could also be used to go to Las Vegas and gamble it away. This money should be given to retirees free of any taxes – state or federal (there is your middle class tax cut). 10,000 Baby Boomers are retiring every day in this country. Do the math.. 10,000 x $20,000.00 to $40,000.00 means $200,000,000.00 to $400,000.00 dollars would drop into the economy every day erasing the slack in unemployment-that amounts to $1.4 billion to $2.8 billion dollars a week. Businesses will compete for this money and when businesses compete.. Jobs are created.

    The reason I call people like Sanders elitists, is because they say the average retiree is foolish and don’t know what to do with that money. They will blow it and people will take advantage of them, they say. The elitist says we have to take care of these ignorant, stupid and unfortunate souls and save them from themselves. Thus, we languish in this low demand economy with these high unemployment rates ( going on for almost a decade now). We who are at the bottom say if we could fire back and be heard, “Hey elitist give us a piece of “our money” so we can get the economy rolling so the people around us can get better paying jobs. Because when folks in my family and in my circle of relationships are working,,, my life is a whole lot better.” But, the elitist fires back and says,,, “I know what’s best for you,” while they enjoy life with their high income jobs. And so it goes. Read “The Fix This Time,” … I go into detail regarding how the Social Security trust fund was drained and how we can pull ourselves out of this house of falling cards.

  2. James Davis says:

    Marion Emory

    You are obviously wrong in your opinion as Sanders is losing the African American vote massively. What makes a winner and indeed a good president is that he or she is able to make adjustments. According to a poll, job creation was at the top of the poll for Democrats (87%), Independents (83%) and Republicans (#2 priority @ 84% – defeating and dismantling ISIS was #1 @ 87%). And in a recent exit poll in South Carolina, African American stated their #1 priority was jobs. Sanders can’t win this election, as he is not winning, by ignoring what voters say are their ranking desires.

  3. Marion Emory says:

    I don’t think Bernie needs to add, or change anything, but I do think he needs to communicate it better. Other than infrastructure, and government jobs, the President doesn’t really have the power to create jobs specifically. However, Bernie’s plan to raise minimum wage, will increase existing workers’ buying power. When they buy things, manufactures and the services industries need to hire more people to manufacture more stuff, and provide more services. This creates jobs. Additionally, his healthcare plan would put more money directly into healthcare instead of filtering it through insurance companies. As healthcare expands, more jobs will be available in the industry. It makes healthcare more accessible and affordable, by moving away from a complicated system. Additionally, Bernie’s plan for tuition free college, will ensure that income does not interfere with a person’s chance to earn a degree, and increase their chances for a better employment and retirement.

    Bernie Sanders does very well to address the many issues that are facing us as a nation. What Bernie offers, that no other candidate does, is that we have every reason to believe he will always fight for better conditions for all people, including and especially minorities.

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