Friday, January 23, 2009

Former Clinton Labor Secretary And Current Obama Economic Adviser Robert Reich Doesn't Think White Males Should Have Construction Jobs

Rebecca Logan beat me to the punch on this on The Alaska Standard. She's raising hell about a recent blog post by former Labor Secretary and Barack Obama's current economic adviser Robert Reich regarding job creation as part of Obama's proposed stimulus package. The mainstream media, for the most part, has ignored it.

To his credit, Reich edits an ordinary blog fully accessible to the public. And it's the title of his January 8th, 2008 post, "The Stimulus: How to Create Jobs Without Them All Going to Skilled Professionals and White Male Construction Workers", that's generating concern. Realistically, the title is actually more controversial than the content, because the racial aspect is only briefly addressed in the third paragraph of the post, where he states the following:

"But if there aren't enough skilled professionals to do the jobs involving new technologies, the stimulus will just increase the wages of the professionals who already have the right skills rather than generate many new jobs in these fields. And if construction jobs go mainly to white males who already dominate the construction trades, many people who need jobs the most -- women, minorities, and the poor and long-term unemployed -- will be shut out".

The comment was recorded on the Podblanc video embedded below, beginning at around the 35-second point:

A similar video without editorial commentary is available on YouTube.

Reich's more salient point is that he believes the stimulus should be used to create a larger pool of labor who will benefit from the economy, rather than merely further empower those who are already empowered. This is a legitimate point, but then he undermines it by playing the "diversity" card and the "race" card. The mainstream media will not admit that most whites, and an increasing number of blacks and latinos, are growing tired of the elites' obsession with race and diversity.

Predictably, the white nationalist media has responded to Reich's posts. Reaction has been posted on Stormfront, the Vanguard News Network Forum (HERE and HERE), Newsnet14, and Kentuckyanna True News. As expected, reaction is highly critical, and much is made of the fact that Robert Reich is Jewish. The latter concern is fueled by the fact that secular-progressive Jews have been at the forefront of all socially-destabilizing causes in the United States, to include the civil rights movement, the gay rights movement, and the feminist movement.

But even non-racist venues like The Right Perspective,, and Michelle Malkin are critical as well. Obscured in the racial hubbub triggered by Reich's remark is the fact that Reich seems to think we can just scarf up the chronically unemployed and the homeless off the street and immediately put them to work building homes, skyscrapers, and bridges. It does take a few more qualifications - at least Arctic Slope Regional Corporation also requires that you be related to one of their workers and get a "letter of recommendation" (wink, wink!) from the governor to be hired.

Seriously, many of the jobs referenced by Reich require lengthy training under the supervision of a skilled worker. For example, installing new pipes for water and sewage systems can be rather complex tasks; too many things can go wrong. And what about electrical work? There's a reason why IBEW got Alaska power companies to pay their employees triple-time if they work on their birthdays; their skills are sufficiently specialized and in high demand to command lucrative compensation. How would you feel about Listerine-swilling homeless "campers" building or remodeling your own home?

Congressman Charlie Rangel's reaction is also of interest. He seems to advocate that the Feds bypass state governors and legislatures and impose programs directly over their heads. By preempting state governments, Rangel shows his fundamental contempt for state sovereignty and a disturbing predilection for totalitarian Federal control. This is the unfortunately byproduct from whoring yourself out to Federal funding; it invites Federal control.

Reich's ideas could be viable if they were deracinated, and if he would understand that only entry-level jobs requiring minimal skills would be initially available to the chronically unemployed who he seeks to reach.

1 comment:

  1. I would wager a guess that this Reich blog post is not the sum total of his plan/idea.

    Interesting that such a brief note has engendered over 400 responses. I didn't stop to read them, but I can guess which segment of the US population wrote them...