Wednesday, January 15, 2014

$21 Trillion War on Poverty Basically a Failure

The "war on poverty" turns 50 years old this month.  Lyndon Johnson launched a noble experiment in January 1964 in an effort to reduce poverty in this country. He did it as a temporary support to blacks to give them a leg up.  After $20 Trillion in expenditures and a vastly increased cost of permanent government bureaucracies, it hasn't worked. In fact, it may have done more harm than good.

Maybe we're not even taking the right approach at all??  From Cato scholar Michael D. Tanner, “The entire concept behind how we fight poverty is wrong. The vast majority of current programs are focused on making poverty more comfortable – giving poor people more food, better shelter, health care, etc. – rather than giving people the tools that will help them escape poverty.”  There's a saying that if you teach a man how to fish.....

Here's a graph of the US poverty rate from Michelle Obama's Mirror:



From The Foundry Blog at Heritage:
Despite spending nearly $20 trillion since the War on Poverty began, the poverty rate remains nearly as high today as it was in the mid-1960s. Today, government spends nearly $1 trillion annually on 80 federal means-tested programs providing cash, food, housing, medical care and targeted social services for poor and low-income Americans.
Let's be clear, the war on poverty was based on transfer and welfare programs primarily to "help" black Americans including housing projects, food, medical assistance, social programs and even cash. Some time later, affirmative action programs were launched, again for black Americans. So, how's it going?

Since the start of the war on poverty, black kids are doing no better in school, housing projects built for ghetto blacks are all slums (a complete lack of personal responsibility), and drug violence, gun violence, incarcerations, STD infections and black abortions remain at epidemic levels.  Black high school completion rates are about the same as ever.  Black crime is still 7 times the rate of whites.

Black culture is actually much worse now.  Black culture is in virtual collapse with 72% of black babies born without a father in the house. Compare this to only 25% when the war on poverty was started.  I can't think of a single more devastating statistic to describe a cultural collapse than the 72% figure; indicating that the institution of marriage has collapsed.  This, in turn, requires those mothers to work and leave children less supervised, less attended and  less parented except for some heroic grand-parents.
 
These poorly parented kids often act no better than animals and that's an insult to animals!.  The result of the cultural collapse is evident from appalling crime statistics, the fact that 70% of new AIDs cases are black, gonnorhea infection rates are 18 times the white average, and black men commit 56% of homocides even though they are 1/16th of the population.  Blacks commit crime at 6 to 7 times the rate of whites and are incarcerated in that same proportion. Now we have "flash mob robberies" and "knockout assaults" that are overwhelmingly black crimes.  All of this is unchanged or worse than 50 years ago.  

Personal Responsibility Is Important,  But Intelligence Is a Key Limitation


I was watching Bill O'Reilly and he was commenting that personal responsibility is the key missing ingredient in success and avoiding poverty.  He correctly says that you could throw all the money in the world at social programs for people, but if there is laziness, addictions, bad attitudes and bad decisions, it will over-ride any and all social programs. True enough.  Of course the Left never wants to hear about personal responsibility when they are the party by and for the irresponsible.  They want to blame our economic system, take more and more of your tax dollars and piss that money away on programs that aren't working. 

Black kids will never be hired when they can't speak right, they can't dress right, when they have no self-respect, no discipline and no education.  This is the problem today, yesterday and 50 years ago.   No amount of money spent, no government bureaucrat and no bureaucracy can fix this.  Why don't we admit that we've failed?

But Bill O'Reilly misses the fact that intelligence is the key and blacks don't have enough of it. When nearly 90% of blacks have IQs less than the average and 50% have IQs below 85, there is not too much hope for the bottom half of this population.  Some 22% of black people are borderline "retarded"with IQs below 75.  I suggested in my blog that we need a vocational high schools for those 50% who probably can't graduate from "academic" high schools.  We might even need to label "retarded" persons as disabled and guarantee a minimum income.

But there is hope for the top 50% of blacks and especially black women.  
 

Affirmative Action and Desegregation Programs Flop Too


We're 40 years into the affirmative action and a period of desegregation.  The result of affirmative action is that many black students are being admitted into colleges despite lower grades and lower SAT scores.  Even after 40 years of desegregation and affirmative action, there has been no improvement in SAT or any other standardized tests designed to rank students for admissions.   Black and white scores are stagnant but blacks consistently score about 1.1 standard deviation lower than Whites.  See the figures below.  You will find this same gap on ALL standardized academic tests.  In fact, the only scores that are improving are scores of Asians who don't have or need any "programs" to help them.  They just work hard and have the necessary intelligence.


Do You See Any Improvements in Black American SAT Scores After 40 Years of Desegregation and the War on Poverty?

Do You See Any Improvements in Black American SAT Scores After 40 Years of Desegregation and the War on Poverty?
The clock is ticking on affirmative action programs.  When they end, there will be hardly any blacks in graduate programs.  How many?

As an example, there are about 1.74 million students in graduate schools in the US which represents the top 10% of the college age population.  So, assume that only the top 10% of a population can make it to graduate schools.  Using an overall median IQ of 100 and a SD of 15,  the top 10% of the population 'cutoff' equates to a minimum IQ of 118. 

For the black population with a median IQ of 85 and a SD of 13, only 0.5% of that college age population would have an IQ equal or over 118.   That amounts to only 11,500 college age black persons would be theoretically qualified for graduate schools.  That is very, very few out of 1.74 million total students.

In fact, without affirmative action, there would be NO black students in the top graduate or professional school.

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