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05 April 2013

Malcolm X, John Major, Ronald Reagan & How the Ownership Society Helps Black People

A year before he was murdered, Malcolm X stood before an audience at King Solomon Baptist Church, in Detroit, and said, “the economic philosophy of black nationalism shows our people the importance of setting up these little stores, and developing them and expanding them into larger operations. Woolworth didn’t start out big like they are today; they started out with a dime store, and expanded, and expanded, and expanded until today they are all over the country and all over the world and they getting some of everybody’s money.”

The social safety net that so many Democrats like to promote is not a safety net at all. It’s a spiderweb that keeps blacks trapped in its tangled strings.
In that same speech, Malcolm X went on to say, “This government has failed us.

“The government itself has failed us. And the white liberals who have been posing as our friends have failed us. And once we see that all of these other sources to which we’ve turned have failed, we stop turning to them and turn to ourselves. We need a self-help program, a do-it-yourself philosophy, a do-it-right-now philosophy, a it’s-already-too-late philosophy.”

Call it absurd or illogical, but it is true. Government HAS failed us.

That’s the basic tenet of the Republican platform; or as Ronald Reagan said, “Government is not the solution to our problem. Government is the problem.”

It is more than a bit refreshing to find that two individuals from two completely different backgrounds came to the same conclusion about government. It has failed us. It has failed black people. It has failed white people too.

The Right Honourable John Major, Prime Minister of Great Britain from 1990 to 1997, delivered a speech to the 1991 Conservative Party conference in which he said, “We Conservatives have always passed our values from generation to generation. I believe that personal prosperity should follow the same course. I want to see wealth cascading down the generations. We do not see each generation starting out anew, with the past cut off and the future ignored.”

This is called the ownership society; a society that promotes personal responsibility, economic liberty and the owning of property.

I’m an advocate of this ownership society, and I believe firmly Malcolm X was promoting the same thing; an economic philosophy that starts with our people setting up these little stores, and developing them and expanding them into larger operations, then passing those larger operations on to the next generation to grow even larger.

The social safety net that so many Democrats like to promote is not a safety net at all. It’s a spiderweb that keeps blacks trapped in its tangled strings.

Many of these social programs punish black people for working.

Economist C. Eugene “Gene” Steuerle, an Institute Fellow at the Urban Institute in Washington, D.C., recently gave testimony to the U.S. House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform discussing this distressful reality.

“Families can face prohibitively high penalties for additional work,” Steuerle said. “Families are eligible for a large amount of assistance at very low annual incomes but then lose that assistance very quickly as they move into moderate income ranges.

“Accepting a higher paying job could mean a steep cut in child care assistance for a single worker with children, for instance. For some, the rapid phaseout of benefits can offset or even more than offset additional take-home pay,” Steuerle continued.

In other words, the social safety net punishes people for working. There’s little incentive to save. There’s little incentive to work, because the government will punish the single black parent for accepting a better paying job or receiving a raise. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist or an individual with an MBA to realize that sooner or later, the person on welfare will conclude they get more from being poor than being rich.

This is not my opinion. This is well-documented research done by an economist at a policy think-tank established by the administration of Democrat Lyndon Baines Johnson to study urban problems.

The tangled government spider web or as Democrats call it, the social safety net, is not serving the black community. Programs like SNAP, WIC, TANF and Section 8 punishes work and rewards futility. These programs do nothing to move blacks toward the ownership society promoted by both Malcolm X and John Major.

It creates dependency. And dependency; dependency on the government to provide these programs; dependency on Democrats to protect these programs from those evil Republicans places blacks right back on the plantation, depending on “massa” for their livelihood.