The State Against Blacks
by Walter Williams

Similar in point of view and subject matter to Thomas Sowell's books, but more long winded.
"There is evidence that Negro suburban families entertain the same fears of the incursion of low-income families for the same stated reasons as white suburbanites. In the town of North Hempstead on Long Island, black family organized opposition led to the killing of a federally-subsidized low-income housing project." page 12

"A person is not prejudiced or unprejudiced. Rather, a person always exhibits prejudiced behavior to the extent that he substitutes general information (prejudgment or stereotypes) - which is less costly - for more costly specific information. What distinguishes different people are their comparative degrees of prejudiced behavior when facing similar situations; some people will get more information than others prior to a decision." page 23

"It is impossible for an observer to say for sure whether choices based on a particular physical feature reflect the indulgence of preference (tastes) or the attempt to minimize information costs (prejudice) or the recognition of real differences." page 25

"In the mind of the employer, skin color may be a first indicator of expected worker productivity. To observe a process that selects in part by skin color and to attribute the selection to taste (in this case to employer "racism") would be misleading. It would be like concluding that auto insurance companies charge drivers under twenty-five years of age higher premiums because companies dislike them. Or that life insurance companies charge women lower premiums because the companies like women better than men." page 28

"Thus, redlining need not be the result of bankers' racism. In many cases (perhaps almost all) it occurs not because bankers are unwilling to make home loans to inner-city blacks but because the inner city is not perceived as a profitable market at the state-imposed interest rate ceiling." page 30

South African white racists favor "equal pay for equal work" laws as a means of protecting white workers. page 43
"Income subsidy programs have disguised the true effects of restriction created by unions and other economic agents by casting a few crumbs to those denied jobs in order to keep them quiet, thereby creating a permanent welfare class." page 45
Williams goes into extensive analysis of (1) minimum wage laws, (2) occupational and business licensing (3) the taxi industry, (4) occupational licensing of plumbers and electricians, (5) blacks and the railroad industry, (6) truck regulation, and (7) the history of the decline in judicial theory that allowed the above-mentioned policies to be deemed legal.

Year Read: 1988


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