Friday, May 22, 2015

How The New Deal Created The Ghetto

A recurring theme on this blog has been that big government creates problems that often necessitate even bigger government to solve.
(A quick example: Wage and price controls — coupled with favorable tax treatment for businesses to provide health insurance — linked health care with employment, a distortion that resulted in the skyrocketing the cost of health care. Eventually, this government-created problem had to be fixed, by — you guessed it! — more government.)
In the wake of the Baltimore riots, it is appropriate to consider government’s role in creating a tinderbox that perpetuates poverty and a cycle of abuse. Not only was Jim Crow state-sponsored segregation, but — 50 years after the repeal of those horrific laws — ghettos that were specifically and intentionally created by government are still trapping Americans and destroying lives.
A few weeks ago, I wrote about how “progressive reformers” were to blame for Baltimore. And, more recently, Richard Rothstein, a research associate at the Economic Policy Institute, was on NPR’s Fresh Air to further explain how “explicit, racially purposeful” policies contributed.

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