April 6th, 2010
06:00 PM ET

Why unemployment among blacks & Hispanics significantly higher than whites?


Unemployed Americans line up to speak with prospective employers at the Los Angeles Career Fair on March 23, 2010. (PHOTO CREDIT: MARK RALSTON/AFP/Getty Images)

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

"Shockingly" and "unacceptably" high... that's how a top Obama economic aide describes the unemployment rate for minorities in this country.

He's got a point. The jobless rate for whites in the United States in March was 8.8 percent. For blacks it was nearly double - 16.5 percent; and for Hispanics 12.6 percent. These unemployment rates increased for both minority groups from the previous month - while it stayed steady for whites.

Officials say minority unemployment is so high because of a drop in certain sectors of the economy - like construction and manufacturing.

The State of Black America report from the National Urban League is calling on the president to push for a so-called jobs surge for hard-hit minority communities.

The report expects to see continuing high unemployment in the short term. It says these high jobless rates are unacceptable when the government just spent tons and tons of money bailing out the banks and auto companies.

The National Urban League recommends spending an additional $150 billion for direct job creation in the hardest hit communities... with a goal of creating three million jobs.

They're also pushing for spending several billion more to hire as many as five million teens in inner-city areas as part of a summer jobs program.

Here’s my question to you: Why is unemployment among blacks and Hispanics significantly higher than among whites?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: Unemployment
April 6th, 2010
05:00 PM ET

U.S. policy when it comes to Afghanistan?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

With friends like Hamid Karzai, who needs enemies?

Here's what America's alleged ally - the president of Afghanistan - has been up to lately...
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/04/06/art.karzai.jpg caption="Afghan President Hamid Karzai (R) speaks with visiting Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad moments before a joint press conference at the presidential palace in Kabul on March 10, 2010."]

  • First - he invited Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to hang out with him in Kabul
  • Then Karzai blamed the fraud in Afghanistan's elections on foreigners who he says wanted a "puppet government" in his country.
  • This past weekend, Karzai reportedly threatened to quit the political process and join the Taliban if he kept coming under "foreign pressure" to reform
  • Lastly - our good friend told a group of tribal leaders that the U.S.-led alliance won't move against Taliban fighters in Kandahar quote "until you say we can."

Enough already - the United States has poured hundreds of billions of dollars into Afghanistan - propping up Karzai's government - since the 2001 invasion... not to mention American lives. For what?

Tom Friedman recently wrote in his New York Times column when you can steal an election - like Karzai did - you can steal anything. He asks how the U.S. can rebuild Afghanistan while relying on a corrupt partner like Karzai.

Friedman worries that "once we clear, hold and build Afghanistan for him, Karzai is going to break our hearts." If that happens, it won't be the first heart to be broken in that cesspool of a civilization.

Meanwhile this afternoon, the White House indicated it may have finally had enough... saying it could cancel Karzai's upcoming U.S. visit if he keeps making "troubling and untruthful remarks."

Here’s my question to you: What should U.S. policy be when it comes to Afghanistan?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: Afghanistan