Thursday, June 25, 2015

Despite much more wealth than blacks, whites collect welfare at about the same rate and get more generous welfare

Oh yes, elections here and there are coming up, and the standard nonsensical narratives are being cranked up for another run through the propaganda mills. Yes frens, we all "know" about those "lazy" blacks, (apparently this is most black people the narrative goes), supposedly collecting massive amounts of welfare, and who "don't want to work." It is a propaganda talking point repeated so  incessantly, it has acquired the status of "truth" among many Americans. Detailed books such as Martin Gilens' Why Americans hate welfare: Race, media and the politics of anti-poverty Policy, 2009, lay out the case fairly well.

Gilens is no liberal, but a recent piece by one such, Paul Krugman, also lays out the case that race is central to how Americans think about and react to welfare. It brought some angry denials on the right, but Krugman is on point. From the dread "black welfare queen" of Ronald Reagan, to the putative "able-bodied negroes" that apparently are "collecting massive amounts," to right wing pundit Ann Coulter's sneering references in "Mugged", to the racialist networks that populate the web, the propaganda narrative keeps rolling merrily along, a gift that keeps on giving. No doubt, it will make a more intense appearance on cue, as elections roll around. Krugman says:

"Yet racial hatred is still a potent force in our society, as we’ve just been reminded to our horror. And I’m sorry to say this, but the racial divide is still a defining feature of our political economy, the reason America is unique among advanced nations in its harsh treatment of the less fortunate and its willingness to tolerate unnecessary suffering among its citizens. Of course, saying this brings angry denials from many conservatives, so let me try to be cool and careful here, and cite some of the overwhelming evidence for the continuing centrality of race in our national politics."
On would think that Krugman needn't have bothered. Race is so obviously a central factor it should go without saying, but it is amusing to see assorted right wingers deny the importance of race, even as they pump up racial memes and distortions to mobilize the base, or burnish assorted narratives. I mean if race is unimportant, how come they seldom mention the extensive feeding of white people from the welfare troughs, or public tax rolls?

It's like the sneering tone people like convicted felon Dinesh Dsouza (1996) and Ann Coulter (2012) take in pointing to levels of black employment in government (a "massive" 12% State and local- 20% federal -from an ethnic group almost 14% of the population-). But they conveniently forget to mention that white people such as the white Irish were posting much HIGHER levels of government employment in the US.- Quote:  "As a consequence, the public sector employed a full one-third of first, second and third-generation Irish Americans in 1930 compared with just 6 percent in 1900." (Bayor and Meagher 1996, The New York Irish, 96-97). Note: that's ONE-THIRD of all Irish, but notice how the right wing race narrative only bashes blacks for such "massive" over-representation. White people are portrayed as these virtuous, self-reliant souls - no public tax dollars for us.. . Right... Can you smell the hypocrisy? I knew you could.

 Back on the welfare track, the record shows that white "role models" have been doing quite well on the welfare rolls. In fact the percentage of white recipients collecting welfare is almost the same as the percentage of blacks collecting. In 2010 they two groups stood virtually equal, as shown herein. So what you ask? Here's what: How come white people, who are much wealthier and better situated than blacks, keep collecting so much welfare? Could it be that white people have rigged the welfare game, just as they have rigged things elsewhere for their primary benefit? Not that this is surprising - it would be old news to blacks or white anti-racists - but what's with all this denialism from self-styled "racial realists" that this is the case? They have to deny of course, or numerous cherished race narratives would fall apart. Are white people in fact being "impoverished" by blacks, swarming all over dey jobs for example, or because "hard working Americans" (now what color are the accredited "hard workers" - lol -take a guess pilgrim) are being beat up by AFDC and TANF welfare expenditures?

White wealth much higher and growing.
Let's take a look at wealth statistics - if anything the black-white gap has INCREASED in recent years, contradicting assorted racialist narratives of blacks "running wild" and prospering on white pain due to "affirmative action quotas" that "oppress" white people. Says one respected source:

"The wealth of white households was 13 times the median wealth of black households in 2013, compared with eight times the wealth in 2010, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis of data from the Federal Reserve’s Survey of Consumer Finances. Likewise, the wealth of white households is now more than 10 times the wealth of Hispanic households, compared with nine times the wealth in 2010. The current gap between blacks and whites has reached its highest point since 1989, when whites had 17 times the wealth of black households."

--Kochhar and Fry. 2014. Wealth inequality has widened along racial, ethnic lines since end of Great Recession. PEW Research Center

White income higher and growing.
Now lets look at white income. Again credible data shows black income gains relative to whites have been stagnant or minor. Indeed the bottom 20% of blacks are now WORSE OFF in terms of income compared to whites. Where are these hordes of blacks displacing and hurting white America due to "quotas?" Shucks, must we have data again? Indeed, pilgrim, like so:

 "The median household income for whites was $67,175 in 2011, as reported in the Census Bureau’s March 2012 Current Population Survey. For blacks, it was $39,760; for Asians, $68,521; and Hispanics $40,007... Since the 1960s the difference in black and white incomes grew from about $19,000 in 1967 to roughly $27,000 in 2011.. The median black household income in 2011 was 59% of median white household income. This represents a modest increase from 1967, when median black income was 55% of white income. Since then, black income has ranged from 54% of white incomes to 65% (in 2000, during a period of economic growth and low unemployment). The racial income gap has increased somewhat since 2007,”

-- Chapter 3  Demographic & Economic Data, by Race- Pew Research Center 2013.

In some locales where whites are the primary  beneficiaries, welfare payments are more generous.
Data again. It seems that in some locales, both historically, and currently, where white people are a larger proportion of welfare recipients, whites receive more generous welfare payments, compared to those locales where blacks are a majority. Every jurisdiction? No, but data going back to the 1930s shows a persistent trend in some places. Quote:

"Hostility to blacks is obviously more serious than hostility to Hispanics, and extends to the under-provision of such public goods as sewers and police in counties with high average incomes in the black population.. the percentage of blacks who are poor is positively associated with the number of welfare recipients and negatively associated with the average payment (indicating lower per recipient payments to blacks than to other groups."

--Roger D. Masters Why Welfare States Rise- and Fall.. in K. Salter (ed) Welfare, Ethnicity and Altruism: 2013. 273-275


"The percentage of African-American population had a negative effect on the average monthly grant. Therefore those states with higher African-American populations, especially the South, had lower monthly grant amounts.. Grant amounts for African- Americans in the South were significantly lower that those for whites, ranging from 7.3 percent less in Washington. D.C. to 37.6 percent less in South Carolina."
--Deborah Ward. 2009. The White Welfare State, p 77. 121

And here's another study of how whites, who are much wealthier than blacks, get more generous treatment at the welfare rolls (Durr and Hill 2006):

"To determine if the negative association between single-mother families and AFDC generosity is dependent on race, I incorporate the percentage of the population that is black into the model.. Doing so significantly improves our models in 1980 and 1990, as states with relatively large black populations have less generous AFDC payments... states with a larger percentage of black single-mother families have less generous welfare spending, while states with a larger proportion of white single-mother families offer more generous welfare spending.. These findings suggest that black and white families are granted uneven support by AFDC, or more specifically that the racial component of single parents in a state influences that state's generosity."-Marlese Durr and Shirley Hill (2006) Race, Work, and Family in the Lives of African Americans. 125-129

What about the "hidden welfare state" - who's getting paid?
The "hidden welfare state" is the complex of subsidies and transfers outside of the infamous AFDC "welfare" program- including Social Security, mortgage interest deductions, workers' compensation, and the Americans with Disabilities Act). etc. As Thomas Sowell said way back in his 1975's Race and Economics book - the system is rigged to show massive institutional favoritism to the haves- meaning for all intents and purposes, whites. Sowell went on to finger corporate welfare, noting that the corporate bosses did not have to put up with such intrusive monitoring as social workers barging in to check on "extra people in the house." Christopher Howard's 2007 book- The Welfare State Nobody Knows: Debunking Myths about U.S. Social Policy, lays out this "hidden welfare state" quite well.

According to Howard: the hidden welfare state provides goods and services directly comparable to those provided in the visible welfare state of direct spending. Similar to public assistance and social insurance programs of the visible welfare state, there are tax expenditures for corporations, military contractors, Wall Street, income security, health, employment and training, housing, education, and social services. The United States government spends as much, or more, on social services and on employment training through the tax code as it does through direct spending.  But these programs which primarily benefit white Americans, including fire-breathing right wingers, do not receive the same critical scrutiny programs benefiting poorer Americans do, and that would include many blacks. Seeing a picture here? If its the poor getting a piece of the action, high dudgeon and harsh scrutiny is the order of the day. But when its the more privileged "haves" getting paid, the picture is a lot softer. Now add the racial angle on top of that.

Black family patterns- historically on par with other Americans not "pathogical." For 50 years black marriage rates were actually higher than that of whites in the US, for example. The transition of the black population to urbanization in the 1950 strained and damaged many relatively stable patterns, just as urbanization of a rural white proletariat (the Irish, the English during the Industrial Revolution, etc etc) caused negative fallout.

Scholar Thomas Sowell has long noted this, but below is the data from a scholar he cites- QUOTE:

"The data show, contrary to widely held beliefs, that through 1960, rates of marriage for both black and white women were lowest at the end of the 1800s and peaked in 1950 for blacks and 1960 for whites. Furthermore it is dra-matically clear that black females married at higher rates than white females of native parentage until 1950.

Moreover, national data covering decennial years from 1890 to 1920 show that blacks out-married whites despite a consistent shortage of black males due to their higher rates of mortality. And in three of the four decennial years there was a higher proportion of currently married black men than white men (Table I). Even in those years, the rate of female-headed families was higher among blacks than among whites, but the cause was high rates of widowhood, not lower rates of marriage.

Furthermore, the decennial series on female-headed families covering the years 1930 to 1980 (presented in Table 2) show that the rate of female-headed families among blacks in 1980 was the highest in the series. Interestingly, the data show that rates of black female-headed families declined to their lowest level in 1950, only to rise sharply thereafter.

Interpreting the data

These facts stand in stark contrast to the characterization in the Moynihan Report of the black family as maintaining family-formation patterns that emanate directly from slavery and are fundamentally different from those of whites. To be sure, the Report turned out to be an accurate piece of social forecasting in that it predicted rapidly increasing rates of female-headed families among blacks. It left a lot to be desired, however, in its interpretation of the historical context.

What the Moynihan Report did not show in highlighting the increase in the number of black female-headed families between 1950 and 1960 was that the proportion of black women who were ever married in 1960 stood at its second highest level since 1890, and it was considerably higher in 1960 than it had been in 1940 (Figure 1). The proportion of black female-headed families was also lower in 1960 than in 1940, and the proportion of urban black female-headed families in 1960 was lower than it had been in both 1930 and 1940.

Although the increase in the proportion of black female-headed families between 1950 and 1960 contrasts with the decline in the proportion of white female-headed families between 1950 and 1960, after 1960 there was a rise in female-headed white families (see Table 2). Moreover, as Andrew Cherlin has pointed out, it is hazardous to draw inferences from the conditions of American families in the 1950s, because the 1950s were probably the most unusual decade for family life in this century.6

In sum, the argument that current levels of female-headed families among blacks are due directly to the cultural legacy of slavery and that black family-formation patterns are fundamentally different from those of whites are not supported by the data.

It is clear from the data that 1950 is a watershed year for black families; thereafter black female-headed families grow rapidly and blacks become more urbanized than whites. Between 1930 and 1950 the rates of black female-headed families, in the United States as a whole and in urban areas, are parallel to the corresponding rates for whites. The black rates are higher than the rates for whites, as one would expect given the black socioeconomic differential and higher rates of widowhood among blacks. It is after 1950 that the rate of female-headed families for blacks diverges significantly from the rate for whites, although the rate of white female-headed families begins to converge with the rate for blacks in about 1970.

What is strikingly different in 1950 is that blacks overtake whites in their level of urbanization. After 1950, blacks become more urbanized than whites, and they continue to urbanize. Whites de-urbanized after 1970. Blacks moved to the cities after World War 11, en masse. And it is after this move that severe family-formation problems began to emerge. The data suggest that the clues to recent family-formation problems among blacks are to be found in the circumstances of black urbanization after 1950.

The post-World War I1 mass migration of blacks to inner-city areas, particularly in the North, presaged their family-formation problems because it both facilitated the civil rights mobilization and made the inner-city residents vul-nerable to postindustrial changes in the economy that trans-formed the opportunity structure of the inner city. {endquote]

Erol Ricketts, "The Origin of Black Female-Headed Families," Focus Spring/Summer 1989, 32-37

Food stamp "freeloaders" and white hypocrisy
The hypocrisy of some whites is evident in the phenomenon of whites who themselves have received welfare and food stamps complaining about "undeserving" blacks. Scholars Michele Fine and Lois Weis found that: "although many, if not most of the white men interviewed have themselves been out of work and have received government benefits and at times welfare benefits (including food stamps), they see themselves as deserving of such benefits, in contrast to blacks whom they see as freeloaders."
(--Michele Fine and Lois Weis 1998. The Unknown City: Lives of Poor and Working-Class Young Adults, p21)

It should also be noted that both Hispanics AND Blacks receive LESS food stamps than whites. Per the USDA,-quote: "According to demographic data, 43% of SNAP participants are white, 33% are African-American, 19% are Hispanic, 2% are Asian, and 2% are Native American." ( USDA/Food and Nutrition Service. (2011). Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) ) Blacks and Hispanics are poorer and qualify more for assistance, but whites, who are vastly wealthier and earn much more income than either group, snap up most of the food stamps. Yet the pernicious propaganda narrative's steady stream is about "undeserving minorities". Can you say hypocrisy? I knew you could.

Bottom line 
So the question remains. How come white people keep collecting so much welfare, yet they have so much more wealth and income than blacks? And on top of that, how come they receive more generosity when there are poorer black folk on the ground? What does this tell us about the "race" narratives being spun in assorted racialist quarters, and indeed in some liberal quarters? What does this tell us about the game?

The diagram below, captures the data in one place:

Joint products of "racial evolution"...


How Obama plays on white guilt- Hilary capitalizes

Hands off the Confederate flag

Despite much more wealth than blacks, whites collect about the same rate of welfare and are treated more generously

African "boat people" ushering in European demographic decline

The forgotten Holocaust- King Leopold's "Congo Free State" - 10 million victims

Are violent minorities taking over California and the West?

Presidential hopeful Ben Carson meets and Greeks

Contra "ISIS" partisans, there have been some beneficial effects of Christianity

The social construction of race, compared to biology- Graves

 Why HBD or hereditarianism lacks credibility

Leading Scientists criticize hereditarian claims

Thai me down - Thais fall behind genetically related southern Chinese, Tibetans below genetically related East Asians like Koreans and other Chinese

Time for liberals to respect "the south" ... in a way of speaking.. the south of Egypt that is..

Irony 2: touted High IQ "G-men" cannot reproduce themselves

Unz and Sowell: Unz debunking Lynn's IQ and Wealth of Nations. Sowell debunking the Bell Curve

Irony 1: touted High IQ types are more homosexual, more atheist, and more liberal (HAL)

Elite white universities discriminate against Asians using reverse "affirmative action"

Deteriorating state of white America

Racial Cartels (The Affirmative Action Propaganda machine- part 2

Hereditarian's/HBD's "Great Black Hope"

Exploding nonsense: the 10,000 Year Explosion

We need "rational racism"? Proponent Dinesh D;Souza becomes his own test case

The Affirmative Action Propaganda Machine- part 1

Two rules for being "really" black- no white wimmen, no Republican

The Axial age reconsidered - or latitude not attitide

Cannibal seasonings: dark meat on white

"Affirmative Action" in the form of court remedies has been around a long time- since the 1930s- benefiting white union workers against discrimination by employers

Mugged by reality 1: White quotas, special preferences and government jobs

Lightweight enforcement of EEO laws contradicts claims of "flood" of minorities "taking jobs"

Railroaded 3: white violence and intimidation imposed quotas

Railroaded 2: how white quotas and special preferences blockade black progress...

Railroaded 1: How white affirmative action and white special preferences destroyed black railroad employment...

Affirmative action: primary beneficiaries are white women...

7 reasons certain libertarians and right-wingers are wrong about the Civil Right Act

Social philosophy of Thomas Sowell

Bogus "biodiversity" theories of Kanazawa, Ruston, Lynn debunked

JP Rushton, Michael Levin, Richard Lynn debunked. Weaknesses of Jared Diamond's approach.

In the Blood- debunking "HBD" and Neo-Nazi appropriation of ancient Egypt

early Europeans and middle Easterners looked like Africans. Peoples returning or "backflowing" to Africa would already be looking like Africans

 Ancient Egypt: one of the world's most advanced civilizations- created by tropical peoples

Playing the "Greek defence" -debunking claims of Greeks as paragons of virtue or exemplars of goodness

Quotations from mainstream academic research on the Nile Valley peoples

Assorted data debunking

Evolution, brain size, and the national IQ of peoples ... - Jelte Wicherts 2010

Why national IQs do not support evolutionary theories of intelligence - WIcherts, Borsboom and Dolan 2010
Personality and Individual Differences 48 (2010) 91-96
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Are intelligence tests measurement invariant over time? by JM Wicherts - ?2004
 --Dolan, Wicherts et al 2004. Investigating the nature of the Flynn effect. Intelligence 32 (2004) 509-537

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Race and other misadventures: essays in honor of Ashley Montagu... By Larry T. Reynolds, Leonard Lieberman

Race and intelligence: separating science from myth. By Jefferson M. Fish. Routledge 2002. See Templeton's detailed article referenced above also inside the book
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Oubre, A (2011) Race Genes and Ability: Rethinking Ethnic Differences, vol 1 and 2. BTI Press
For summary see:
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--S OY Keita, R A Kittles, et al. "Conceptualizing human variation," Nature Genetics 36, S17 - S20 (2004)

--S.O.Y. Keita and Rick Kittles. (1997) *The Persistence ofRacial Thinking and the Myth of Racial Divergence. AJPA, 99:3
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Alan Templeton. "The Genetic and Evolutionary significnce oF Human Races." pp 31-56. IN: J. FiSh (2002) Race and Intelligence: Separating scinnce from myth.

 J. FiSh (2002) Race and Intelligence: Separating science from myth.


-------------------------------- ---------------------

Oubre, A (2011) Race Genes and Ability: Rethinking Ethnic Differences, vol 1 and 2. BTI Press

Krimsky, S, Sloan.K (2011) Race and the Genetic Revolution: Science, Myth, and Culture

Wicherts and Johnson, 2009. Group differences in the heritability of items and test scores

--Joseph Graves, 2006. What We Know and What We Don’t Know: Human Genetic Variation and the Social Construction of Race

J. Kahn (2013) How a Drug Becomes "Ethnic" - Yale Journal of Health Policy, Law and Ethics, v4:1

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Russell Resthaven said...

I read this article and I believe the statistics are faulty, in which case the entire premise is wrong. There is a chance I misinterpreted it though, so I felt compelled to post a comment to be sure.

The numbers you base the premise of the article off of are in the table "TANF Recipients by Race, 2000 - 2010".

These numbers appear to list the percentage of TANF recipients from each race, and NOT the percentage of each race receiving TANF. The former is not adjusted for each race's percentage of the overall population, the latter is.

So my question is, are you adjusting for the racial distribution of the population?

For example, if whites are a larger share of the population than blacks, you would expect them to be more represented in TANF. However, we see that despite blacks being around 12% of the population, they are almost equally represented with whites in TANF in 2010.

I'm not trying to nitpick, but this really gets to the core of your articles.


Additional question, sorry for double up in a single post. But it's clear you have invested a tremendous amount of effort in this blog, writing lengthy articles spanning several years. I am curious what your background and purpose is with this blog. It seems like something larger than just a side project on your spare time. Is this a full time job?


Research data said...

Hello, and thanks for your comments. What you say is true, but does not quite address the bottom line in the post- the core as you say. Note a key statement in the post:

"How come white people, who are much wealthier and better situated than blacks, keep collecting so much welfare?"

That is the core matter. Blacks are substantially represented to be sure, but they are much poorer, both in terms of income and wealth. It should be expected that they would show higher welfare representation as a result of that poverty, and as a result of systematic discrimination that continues today- though in lesser form than prior to the 1980s, in employment and financial access. The key point is how come white people are collecting so much when they are so much better situated, while at the same time bashing blacks for being "undeserving"? That to me is hypocrisy.

You say that a larger white population should naturally be represented in larger numbers in TANF. This is true, but again, just as in your example with black 12%, the raw numbers don't tell the real story. It is not simply a matter of more whites in the pool. Whites are more numerous indeed, BUT they are also much more wealthy, and earn much more income. So again why the hypocrisy of many conservatives or assorted libertarians, who routinely bash blacks over welfare while carefully exempting whites from similar scrutiny? Why the double standard?

Also as shown, locales with more whites get higher welfare payments, than in locales where blacks are the majority. As various writers quoted suggest, a double standard is in play.

Re my own research, I do it independently, but only got into this in detail some years ago, when I ran across various ideologues online, including many underhanded and devious trolls on Wikipedia, spouting or "spinning" numerous bogus claims, claims not only bogus as to fact but that were not in keeping with a fair and decent conservatism. In short a vast edifice of propaganda just as bad as the Left, whom I have also critiqued in detail.

Russell Resthaven said...

Thanks for the reply, I do appreciate it.

I think part of it might be that perhaps whites are not as universally well off as conventional wisdom believes? My personal hunch is that the top 10% of whites earn so much that they heavily skew the average upward. The median might be a better number here.

Last, I don't know of any systematic discrimination taking place today, but that's another question for another time.

Congrats on doing so much research own your own and for free, that is a tremendous effort.