Trump’s Top Economic Adviser Doesn’t See Racism

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

There is no systemic racism in the United States according to Trump's top economic adviser, Larry Kudlow, a man who should know better than most people that our entire economy is fundamentally and structurally racist.

Kudlow spoke to reporters outside the White House yesterday where he made the declaration.

I'm not just here to say that Kudlow is obviously wrong.

It matters that Trump's top economic adviser does not acknowledge the existence of systemic racism because that means his solutions to our problems will likely reinforce racist systems. It means Kudlow will give bad advice with clear blind spots to the "president" of the United States.

This isn't theoretical and, in fact, we can see this playing out in practice right now.

Trump and his advisers at the White House including Kudlow have said a spattering of better than expected headlines is proof that we don't need another stimulus bill and they've loudly opposed helping cities and states plug holes in the budgets, but the latter is leading directly to racial economic disparity.

The Labor Department's latest jobs report -- the one that Kudlow himself lit his hair on fire for -- shows that white unemployment declined while black unemployment increased. That's primarily because local governments, which employ a higher percentage of black Americans, have cut 1.5 million jobs since the pandemic began and they're not done cutting.

States are going to start hitting hard budget caps in the coming weeks and that could lead to even more layoffs for black workers.

“The last thing we need right now is for unemployment to go any higher,” New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy said during a POLITICO Playbook event on Tuesday. Absent cash assistance from the federal government, which the state will need as early as next month, educators, firefighters and EMS workers might be laid off, he said.

“These layoffs are happening as we speak,” Murphy said. “It’s not theoretical.”

Many of these municipal and state layoffs are disproportionately affecting black Americans, adding pressure on Congress to act as protests over racism and police brutality roil the country. The public sector employs a higher proportion of black workers than other U.S. industries do, and its decline explains in part Friday’s jobs report, which showed that while the unemployment rate declined overall, it continued to tick upward for black workers.

I say that Larry Kudlow 'should know better than most people' that systemic racism exists because he is ostensibly an economist.

Systemic racism is at its most visible in the hard numbers of economics and the numbers tell us that wide, cavernous disparities in disposable income, net worth, liquidity, ownership -- and everything in between -- exist along racial lines.

An economic adviser who doesn't see racism is an adviser who would tell you that everything is fine now because stocks are up.

Few Americans directly own stock and even fewer black Americans do.

  • muselet

    Larry Kudlow has never experienced racism, so it can’t exist. QED.

    I wish that were only snark.

    If I were any paler, I’d be translucent, and I can recognize the systemic racism in our society. However, I’m not wealthy, and my job doesn’t require me not to see anything that would make Donald Trump haz a sad.

    Plus, Larry Kudlow is consistently, hilariously wrong about pretty much everything. If Kudlow tells you the day is warm and sunny, grab your coat and umbrella.


  • katanahamon

    10 percent wealthiest own 84% of the stock market. That’s who the stock market serves. The modern Republican Party and the ten percent wealthiest have collaborated on a system of economic slavery imposed on the rest of us. Just as one example, why do we not have health care for everyone? Because there is a huge industrial complex of insurers and others making huge profits for..limiting your access to healthcare, what procedures, doctors, drugs, treatments and hospitals you have access to. My pension was locked into a union agreement that they then invested yes, in the stock market. I don’t think I’ll ever see a dime. (I’m still a believer in unions, it just requires better rank and file participation and administration..) How many are forced to invest in the stock market as the only viable retirement plan option? There are predatory systems in place all across our system and country to insure the continued dominance of the wealthiest ten percent. They figured out that not only black, brown, red and yellow people could be it’s only the wealthiest in the US that receive the benefits of the freedoms fought so hard for by our ancestors. Physical slavery has been augmented (I was going to say replaced, but, upon further thought, minimum wage jobs are very akin to physical slavery, and no, I don’t think I’m much..) by social, economic and systemic (propagandistic) slavery. Why people continue to vote for the right wing is simply astonishing to me.

    • Aynwrong

      Very well said.

  • Kevin Krasnansky

    Why put “president” in quotes? Are you suggesting Trump isn’t really the president? Even if the election was stolen, he’s still the president. Or maybe you’re suggesting Ludlow is not actually advising Trump. Do you have information that he’s been cut out of the loop? Wouldn’t that hurt your point?

    As usual, minor quibbles aside, you’re great on content.