Domestic Policy Council Director and former National Security Advisor Susan Rice made an astonishing claim during remarks before Al Sharpton’s racial justice advocacy group National Action Network last Wednesday. She said that between 2000 and 2020, racism against blacks cost the US $16 trillion in lost GDP. That’s quite a statement.
She told the audience:
In the last 20 years, the US had a GDP shortfall of $16 trillion due to discrimination against Black Americans. If we closed our racial gaps, we could add another $5 trillion to GDP over just the next five years. And in case you’re wondering, that’s not my math, that’s, according to Citibank. We all benefit when every community has the chance to thrive.
Rice was referring to a 2020 report from Citibank titled “Closing the Racial Inequality Gaps: The Economic Cost of Black Inequality in the US,” which stated:
The analysis in the report that follows shows that if four key racial gaps for Blacks —wages, education, housing, and investment — were closed 20 years ago, $16 trillion could have been added to the US economy. And if the gaps are closed today, $5 trillion can be added to US GDP over the next five years.
Far from a neutral report, the document begins, “Today, more than at any time since Dr. King’s assassination, we are bearing witness to the grave injustices affecting our fellow citizens.” Written in September 2020 at perhaps the most frightening point of the pandemic, it points out that minorities were being hospitalized at a “disproportionately high rate, a direct result of what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has identified as ‘long-standing systemic health and social inequities.’” It argues that they were also “bearing a disproportionate share of the pandemic’s economic devastation.”
The authors claim, “just giving fair and equitable lending to black entrepreneurs might have resulted in the creation of an additional $13 trillion in business revenue and potentially created 6.1 million jobs per year.”
In short, it was not an impartial, fact-based financial report, but an emotional plea written following a summer of nationwide racial riots to advance a political agenda.
Still, Rice said, “Citing ‘Citi Research’ as the source of the numbers leaves no room for further explanation.” After viewing the report, I beg to differ, but I digress.
Susan Rice: Racism has reduced the size of the economy by $16 trillion pic.twitter.com/HMjF7apS74
— Tom Elliott (@tomselliott) April 12, 2023
1) states are banning kids books
2) They're doing so for featuring "black or brown characters"
3) black history is being "erased" from classrooms
4) Red states think blacks "don't count"
5) Red states think blacks "don't matter"
6) Red states think blacks "shouldn't exist"
— Tom Elliott (@tomselliott) April 12, 2023
In other remarks, Rice encouraged the group to “stand together in defense of facts, truth, and history.” She declared that “innocent children’s books are being banned just because they prominently feature black or brown characters” and that “black history is being erased from our classrooms and textbooks.”
FYI: Here’s a partial list of the books Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis banned from school libraries in the state last month (via the Daily Mail):
Gender Queer – This graphic memoir tells the story of someone figuring out they identify as neither a girl or boy. It includes illustrations of masturbation and encourages trans surgeries like double mastectomies
Flamer – This book is also told through images and depicts young boys performing sex acts with each other at a Boy Scouts summer camp
This Book is Gay – Another story told through illustrations, this book contains instructions on the ‘ins and outs of gay sex’ as well as where to meet other LGBTQ people like with online apps meant for hookup culture
Let’s Talk About It – Graphic depictions instruct children on how both men and women masturbate. It also includes instructions and best-practices for sexting, including cutting out faces and birth mark
Rice’s disingenuous speech was certainly well received by the crowd at the National Action Network. Its reception by the conservative media, however, was far less enthusiastic.
Here are some of the responses to Rice’s remarks on social media:
National Review contributor Pradheep Shanker: “Liberalism has reduced the size of the economy by $100 trillion. And I have as much proof of that as @AmbassadorRice does.”
Daily Caller editor Vince Coglianese: “Just perfect: Speaking to millionaire Al Sharpton’s group, millionaire Susan Rice quotes her friends at Citibank to call the American economy racist,” tweeted. “Fun fact: In 2008, Michael Froman — then a Citigroup executive — recommended Susan Rice for the job of US Ambassador to the United Nations.”
Robert Bruce Willsie: “So what she is telling us is almost 60 years of leftist policies (War on Poverty, Welfare, Affirmative Action, etc.) designed to reduce racial discrimination and improve the lives of minorities have been a complete failure. Obviously the solution is more leftist policies.”