Skip to comments.Will the Trend Of Low Birth Rates Be Reversed?
Posted on 07/27/2018 5:58:41 AM PDT by Kaslin
Sometimes a society's values change sharply with almost no one noticing, much less anticipating the consequences. In 1968, according to a Gallup survey, 70 percent of American adults said that a family of three or more children was "ideal" -- about the same number as Gallup surveys starting in 1938. That number helps explain the explosive baby boom after Americans were no longer constrained by depression and world war.
Those values and numbers didn't last. By 1978, Gallup reported that only 39 percent considered three or more children "ideal." The numbers have hovered around there ever since, spiking to just 41 percent in the late-1990s tech boom.
The change in values and behavior took time to register. Just before the 1972 presidential election, then-President Richard Nixon and a Democratic Congress goosed up Social Security benefits. They figured the baby-boom generation was just delaying producing a baby boom of its own. Wrong. Social Security has needed patching up ever since.
Similarly, the 1970s showed sharp increases in female workforce participation, divorce and singe-parent households, as well as decreased participation in voluntary organizations -- all unanticipated.
Is a similar values shift happening now? Maybe so, suggest George Mason University associate professor Philip Auerswald and Palo Alto hedge fund manager Joon Yun in an article in The New York Times. They point out that the American fertility rate -- the number of children per woman age 15 to 44 -- has hit a post-1970s low. Birth rates typically drop during recessions and rise a bit during booms. They did drop notably from 2007 to 2009. But the latest data don't show a rebound, despite significant growth and record-low unemployment. CARTOONS | Henry Payne View Cartoon
The trend varies among demographic groups. Native-born Hispanics and blacks used to have birth rates above the replacement rate (2.1 births per woman). Now they're below replacement, almost as low that of as native-born whites and Asians, which are down only a bit. The immigrant birth rate remains above replacement level among blacks, but only barely above among Hispanics, and below among whites and Asians.
One possible consequence: Those often-gleeful predictions that whites will soon be a minority will not be realized so soon, or maybe ever. Nor is it clear, as sociologist Richard Alba has suggested, whether often-intermarrying Hispanics and Asians will see themselves as aggrieved minorities. They might just blend in, like Italians and Poles.
Also, the sharp drop in the Hispanic birth rate combined with the sharp drop of Hispanic (especially Mexican) immigration post-2007 means a lower proportion of low-skill immigrants competing for jobs with low-skill Americans. Asian immigrants may outnumber Hispanics and arrive with significantly higher skill levels. So may immigrants from African countries like Nigeria and Ghana. Their capacity for expanding the economy rather than competing for low-skill jobs may point to unexpected growth. And neither group arrives with grievances rooted in slavery and American racial segregation.
Other familiar trends may be reversed. Demographer and Institute for Family Studies research fellow Lyman Stone, citing various data, argues, "The decline in fertility is mostly due to declining marriage," as downscale women have had difficulty finding suitable spouses. They might have more success if the recent increase in downscale wages continues.
Similarly, fewer young people would get caught in the trap of incurring huge college debt for worthless degrees or none at all if, as the Manhattan Institute's Aaron Renn suggests, enrollment in higher education, already declining, starts plunging precipitously around 2025. Might young people bypass college and find constructive jobs and marry and raise families as their counterparts did in the postwar years?
That's suggested by a recent trend reversal. During the sluggish 2008-2013 economy, young Americans stayed put in tiny child-unfriendly apartments in hip central-coastal cities like New York and San Francisco, and paid high rents resulting from stringent environmental restrictions. This was hailed as a move toward progressive attitudes. But evidently not. As Newgeography proprietor Joel Kotkin has noted, since growth returned, young people have been heading to child-friendly suburbs and exurbs, ditching subway cards for SUV fobs.
All of which raises the possibility of current stubbornly low birth rates being on the verge of a rise, away from the economically and culturally divided low-birth-rate society described in Charles Murray's "Coming Apart," and toward something suggested by Donald Trump's "Make America Great Again."
For the moment, these countertrends are just possibilities. But since persistently low birth rates lead to population loss, economic stagnation and low creativity, let's hope some of them come true.
Doin’ my part. G-d does the rest.
Between feminism and MGTOW, I think the answer is a resounding “no”, Mike.
The EASIEST way to win a war is to recruit more troops.
Promote the ones already in service and go get some more.
I've preached that for forty years.
God gave us five, but we tried for a couple of dozen.
This piece ignores the high financial and emotional risks men endure when marrying or breeding; until they don’t need to fear some other guy living in their home with their former wife and their children, it ain’t gonna happen. NJ recently took up the issue of “alimony for life” because too many ageing white women were watching their unused eggs go to waste; it is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of what needs to change before most men are up for starting families again.
Part of the demographic issue is caused by economics. It costs thousands of dollars to have a baby who has zero problems. It costs thousands more to raise that child to adulthood. People are having fewer children so they can invest more in the ones they have. This is what happens to every developed economy. This is why socialist countries have an even worse demographic issue. Socialism distributes poverty and poverty means people will have fewer children, because, by whatever means, having a child is a choice.
Improve the economy so that average people feel well off and the problem of fewer children will resolve itself. Tax the heck out of them, and they will have fewer children.
Yes and one move item.
The cost of raising children.
I meant to say “No, it can’t be reversed easily”
Will the Trend Of Low Birth Rates Be Reversed?
Depends. Will the antinatalist propaganda continue from our overlords? Will feminism crawl back under the rock from whence it came? Probably not.
Not until they make it an interactive game for the systems. And even then, the 3D headsets will become an issue banging together or flying off. Nuisance. But if they can get a smaller headset, the possibilities could be endless.
You lost me at poverty means people will have fewer children.
How do you explain India? American ghettos? Central and South America?
A neo pagan decadent culture cultivates narcissism. Feminism which is at its core an antifertility cult replaces religion for many vulnerable young women. They often realize what they squandered when their time as passed.
End no-fault divorce. No-fault divorce was basically the outlawing of stable marriages and stable families. At the least, give couple the choice to enter into permanent marriages, something that the states no longer recognize.
Definitely a start; unfortunately I don’t know what the answer is. The “normalcy” of marriage has been successfully marginalized - like going to church on Sundays.
“How do you explain India? American ghettos? Central and South America?”
We are talking about different kinds of civilizations. Rural, agricultural poor people don’t use money so much as barter and hand-to-mouth subsistence. They have more children because those children will work and ensure they survival of the family. Advanced, first world, cultures, use money obtained from activities they perform. They trade that money for goods and services. If they are just getting along, they have fewer children because they have a store of value, money. The more money they store, the better off they are. (Fewer kids, more stored money.)
The game, if you will, is to maximize the outcome for your family using the rules of the culture you are in. Subsistence in a first world culture is different than in a third world culture. The poor in America are fat, because we give them “benefits.” (And they make poor decisions with those benefits because they cost nothing.) Those are the people who have excessive kids because the taxpayer pays them to have those kids. But the “middle class” sees having fewer kids and investing more in them as the way to get ahead. If you want to send your kid to college, you can’t have three or four of them. You have one and invest heavily in that one.
We need a sexual counter revolution, a return to the idea that sex is ordered to the procreation and raising of children. A major part of this would be to again recognize the differences between men and women, and the roles they play in both the family and society. We need leaders that will stop being afraid of calling out feminism as the attack against the proper feminine nature of women that it is.
MGTOW is a symptom, feminism is the cause.
Less debt. Americans, and young people, are up to their eyeballs in it.
Marriage is a liability for men, divorce is an asset for women. This dynamic is a final stab in the heart of the western world, to which there is no recovery.
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