Call It the Critical Trump Theory: Free Enterprise Is a Miracle for Minorities
This article is from the archive of The New York Sun before the launch of its new website in 2022. The Sun has neither altered nor updated such articles but will seek to correct any errors, mis-categorizations or other problems introduced during transfer.
Critical race theory is all the rage among far-left progressive intellectuals, and at least part of it has permeated mainstream chief executives, who should know better. Systemic racism, and CRT, along with something called racial equity, have become both the diagnosis and the solution.
In other words we need more discrimination to solve discrimination and it all started 250 years ago by a bunch of white male — pardon, white supremacist — males. While I have no doubt there is unfortunately still some discrimination in America, I also totally reject the idea of systemic racism.
It is precisely the genius of American democracy that has fostered huge and equitable changes in race, gender, color, everything. The 1619 project sponsored by the crazy people at the New York times has been disputed up and down the line by highly respected historians.
As I argued on my Independence Day Special, the solution to what ails us can be found in the 1776 project, which is about freedom and the consent of the governed and the authority of a higher power that makes our system work.
About a year ago, when I served in the Trump administration, I was frequently attacked for my denial of systemic racism. I continue to hold that view. And I could never get a straight answer from interviewers on a whole bunch of networks — CNBC, CNN, NBC, and others.
If America is so racist how is it that an African American was elected twice to the presidency. Twice mind you. And during those two victories was supported by 80 million white voters. That is not systemic racism. Nor were the 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments, which were triggered by Abe Lincoln and continued under president U.S. Grant.
Nor was the integration of the United States military by Harry Truman and the great civil rights achievements by Lyndon Johnson with large scale Republican help in the Senate. They passed things like the Civil Rights Act, the Voting Rights Act, the Fair Housing Act. The fact that Ku Klux Klan Democrats in the Senate tried desperately to block these reforms, just as they had blocked them for 50 years prior, didn’t stop it from getting done in our representative democracy.
Martin Luther King has always been a hero of mine for arguing the importance of the content of our character rather than the color of our skin. Another hero was Thurgood Marshall, who ran the legal department of the NAACP. And won cases that effectively overturned bad laws. Then he went on to become an outstanding Supreme Court justice.
Now we come to the economic part of this story. Usually welfare and entitlement subsidies are at the center of discussions of black economic development, but it didn’t work. Government dependency won out over black ownership. During the Trump years, though, a new model was put in place with great success.
In his National Review online article, my friend and Trump alumnus, Scott Turner, writes convincingly with facts about the success of African Americans under free enterprise policies. While Mr. Trump is often accused of being one of the most racist presidents, the facts are that black Americans experienced huge benefits from lower taxes and fewer regulations.
The unemployment rate, pre-pandemic, for blacks reached a record low of 5.2%. The poverty rate for black Americans hit record lows, while a total of 1 million lifted themselves out of poverty. Real median household income for black families rose above $4,000 dollars after falling over the previous 14 years. Black home ownership sky-rocketed.
Median weekly earnings grew 4.1% on average, higher than the 3.4% earnings growth for whites. Scott argues that the 2017 tax cut was crucial, as was the de-regulation of business and perhaps most important, the creation of nearly 9,000 opportunity zones, which attracted roughly $75 billion in capital for under-served communities.
That’s enough to create half a million jobs, lift another million persons out of poverty, by using a simple tool where capital gains of long-term investments were taxed at zero. These are important achievements by a Republican president and a Republican party who are always viciously attacked by the CRT, woke crowd. The wokes, though, are wrong.
And their woke economics of welfare and entitlement subsidies do African Americans over the long run a great disservice and great harm, with poor results. The same holds true for other minority groups. It’s no secret that Mr. Trump’s reelection attracted a big increase in African American voters and a whopping gain from Hispanics.
Give free enterprise a chance, and it will work economic miracles. Unfortunately, President Biden appears to be siding with the woke crowd.
From Mr. Kudlow’s broadcast on Fox News.