Tuesday, January 21, 2014

The Economics of Martin Luther King

 Matthew Rozsa reports:
[King] argued that the federal government owed its citizens "an economic and social Bill of Rights." These would include a guaranteed job for every citizen capable of working, thus eradicating unemployment except for the physically and psychologically debilitated; a guaranteed minimum income (which he emphasized would not be a substitute for the entire welfare state, as many conservatives demanded), one that "should be fixed as to automatically increase along with the cost of living and the rise in the Gross National Product"; the elimination of slums and racialized neighborhoods; full access to quality education for all children; a requirement that all Federal legislation designed to improve the quality of life of citizens ("in education, the labor market, income maintenance, and the like") that a requirement exist "that the people affected by a program be granted a statutory right to play a significant role in how it shall be designed and administered"; and the right to "the full benefits of modern science in health care." 
King closed this ambitious manifesto by pre-empting conservative claims that this program would be too expensive by pointing out how its funds could be taken from egregious military ventures like the Vietnam War.
Bottom line: MLK was a serious central planner.


  1. National Review types will have you believe MLK Jr was a Conservative hero, right up there with Mandela in the pantheon. Haha.

  2. Sadly these socialist economic views where because the few groups that actually reached out to King were all communist ones. The Communists saw a group of people that they could poison with their statists economics as long as they played along with wanting minorities to have equal rights. They painted capitalism as one of the reasons minorities were treated the way they were back in those times. Granted the truth of the matter was that the communists were just as racist as Bull Conner and other prominent and openly racist politicians and organizations that they were fighting against.