All that she wants is another baby, oo wo oh

by Sarah, Proud and Tall

Occasionally I do like to slip on my anti-bacterial floaties and my best Vera Wang one piece, and wade into the piss-scented and vaguely warm kiddie pool that is the Corner.

Currently, Michael Walsh is standing in the shallow end, screaming his lungs out like a toddler who dropped his lollipop in the water and had it land on a turd floater, and doing a fine variation on that old favourite, “Wimmins is not birthin’ enough and we’re all going to die”.

On the one hand — as NRO’s resident demography bore has been tirelessly pointing out — the Western world is facing an unparalleled demographic crisis brought on by a feminist-inspired modern twist on Lysistrata (showering sex but withholding children), while at the same time, the West’s vaunted “safety net” is collapsing because the system has been turned upside-down and a bevy of great-grandparents now coos over a single child.

Surely, this is the ultimate expression of the suicide cult that is the modern Left, a subset of libertine takers that so loathes itself that it will dragoon the makers into underwriting the chalices of tasty hemlock it’s so eager for everybody to quaff in order to put itself out of its misery. If, as long as it doesn’t hurt anybody, it feels good, do it! Alas, it does hurt somebody — it hurts society, by robbing it of its future and burdening those lucky kids who make it through the contraceptive/abortifacient gantlet with an unpayable debt to the very people who tried to get rid of them.

And for what? So that somebody might not be “punished” by a baby as a consequence of his or her personal behavior?

Self-centered Baby Boomer liberalism emerged from the “sexual revolution” of the sixties, and for the past half century Boomers have been trying to escape the consequences of no consequences, which now threaten the underpinnings of the Left’s beloved, bankrupting welfare state. And yet, at the same time, women of child-bearing age demand that somebody — insurance companies, Washington, the pope in Rome — pay for universal contraceptive and abortion services in the name of “women’s health.”

If this is not the definition of a suicide cult — one driven by the leftist insistence that sexual license be, well, licensed by the state, non-judgmentally and consequence-free — it’s hard to know what is. The Shakers had nothing on these people; at least they made furniture. But it’s what comes from treating pregnancy as a preventable disease, and viewing people as carbon-based pollutants instead of beings created in the image and likeness of God.

You left-wing sluts out there are trying to kill us all, with your desperate need to control your own birth cycles, with your libidinous concupiscence and your filthy backroom orgies (often, I am told, involving the wanton use of abortifacients and condoms), and your pathetic reliance upon government handouts because you have failed to produce enough children to look after you when you are old and have been brought low by syphilis and the other deservéd wages of your sin.

The answer?

The trick will be restoring what, in the days of family-owned farms and small businesses, was once true: that babies are an asset rather than a burden. Imagine a society in which parents get to keep more of the human capital they form by investing in their children. Imagine a society in which the family is no longer just a consumer unit, but a productive enterprise. The society that figures out how to restore the economic foundation of the family will own the future.

“A woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle.” That was the witticism that passed for cleverness back in the day. Who needs men in the Brave New World? We’re about to find out.

Of course. All you lefty women need to do is stop it with your baby hatred and remember that kids are exploitable labor. If nothing else, you could get good prices on the organ market. Do you know what a baby kidney goes for today in Marrakesh? Imagine how many hip replacements that could pay for. Worst comes to worst, we can always eat the little fuckers.

The Corner’s links are always interesting, and today I ended up at the Wall Street Journal. Frankly, I didn’t even know they were still publishing that rag. The last time I got a decent tip out of it was just before I brought 3 shipping containers worth of Cuban cigars in through Canada in September 1960.

Anyway, Mary Eberstadt is doing sterling work, first pointing out that there are lots of women out there who reject the tyrannous grip of government over their uterus on the basis that they much prefer the tyrannous grip of the Church, before loudly singing from the same hymn book as Mr Walsh.

It is not only a series of popes but also a number of prominent secular thinkers who believe that the birth-control pill has been one of the major milestones in human history—a diverse group that runs from public intellectuals of a previous generation like Walter Lippmann to such contemporary scholars as Francis Fukuyama and Robert Putnam. As many pundits had occasion to observe in 2010, the 50th anniversary of the pill, it is hard to think of anything else that has changed life so quickly and dramatically for so many.

In other words, this isn’t just a Catholic thing. In severing sex from procreation, humankind set into motion forces that have by now shaped and reshaped almost every aspect of life in the Western world. Families are smaller, birthrates have dropped, divorce and out-of-wedlock births have soared. Demography has now even started to work against the modern welfare state, which has become harder to sustain as fewer children have been produced to replace aging parents.

This is in service of an argument that, I shit you not, women today are unhappier than they were in the seventies, and are therefore restoring to whining on blogs about their husbands, impregnating themselves with turkey basters and popping Xanax, all of which must, in Ms Eberstadt’s mind, link back to the fact that the sexual revolution gave women the opportunity to think about other opportunities, rather than just accepting their prescribed role as baby mills for a man their parents chose.

Why do the pages of our tonier magazines brim with mournful titles like “The Case for Settling” and “The End of Men”? Why do websites run by and for women focus so much on men who won’t grow up, and ooze such despair about relations between the sexes?

Why do so many accomplished women simply give up these days and decide to have children on their own, sometimes using anonymous sperm donors, thus creating the world’s first purposely fatherless children? What of the fact, widely reported earlier this week, that 26% of American women are on some kind of mental-health medication for anxiety and depression and related problems?

Or how about what is known in sociology as “the paradox of declining female happiness”? Using 35 years of data from the General Social Survey, two Wharton School economists, Betsey Stevenson and Justin Wolfers, made the case in 2009 that women’s happiness appeared to be declining over time despite their advances in the work force and education.

The authors noted that women (and men) showed declining happiness during the years studied. Though they were careful not to draw conclusions from their data, is it not reasonable to think that at least some of that discontent comes from the feeling that the grass is greener elsewhere—a feeling made plausible by the sexual revolution?

My final via-the-Corner linkage is to an article by Jeff Jacoby in the Boston Globe in which Jeff laments the fact that young people today aren’t selfish enough to care only about themselves and vote Republican, a problem to which, I am happy to say, the answer is apparently the example of our Holy Lord Ronnie:

But while “young = liberal’’ may be a familiar equation, it isn’t chiseled in granite. Indeed, it wasn’t all that long ago that the nation’s youngest voters solidly backed the most influential conservative in modern American politics. In 1984, voters under 30 supported Ronald Reagan by a whopping 20-point margin. Not until Obama’s election 24 years later would young voters so strongly line up behind any presidential candidate.

Romney laments that he’s not “connecting with young people across the country.’’ Somehow the Gipper did it, and in spades. What was his magic?

If memory serves me correctly, the answer to Ronnie’s success was blatant pandering to greed and avarice, the demonizing of anyone sufficiently “other”, frequent outright lying, and a sweet sprinkling of tax cuts and other left wing policies which would now be considered so socialist as to render him unelectable for any office above that of treasurer of the Burbank Republican Ladies Association.

Mitt’s got the first few things down pat. Now if only he could manage that last bit without alienating the wingnuts or looking like a flip-flopper, the election would be in the bag.

[Image: Distracting the Baby, Emile Munier (1840-)]

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65 replies
  1. 1
    MDC says:

    If you can’t tell the difference between birth control and suicide, your education was seriously deficient.

  2. 2
    ceece says:

    and how many children do Michael Walsh and Mary Eberstadt have? Presumably they’re popping them out like the Duggars, right???

  3. 3
    MDC says:

    Also, too: the “leftist suicide cult” of birth control users apparently includes 97% of Catholic women. Interesting.

  4. 4
    Gin & Tonic says:

    What morans. You know, I’ve been happily and faithfully married to one woman for nearly four decades. We have three delightful children. We’ve had sex way more than three times in those years. Birth control – it ain’t just about the wiminz, ya know? It’s been a good thing for the two of us, and for our children, whom we were able to provide for appropriately.

    Idiots.

  5. 5
    Mike G says:

    You left-wing sluts out there are trying to kill us all, with your desperate need to control your own birth cycles, with your libidinous concupiscence and your filthy backroom orgies that you never invite me to.

  6. 6
    Mark S. says:

    The society that returns to the 19th century will win the future! Suck on it, Tommy!

    It’s paradoxical that the countries with the highest fertility rates are pretty much the poorest. But I’m sure this Walsh guy knows what he’s talking about.

  7. 7
    KG says:

    The trick will be restoring what, in the days of family-owned farms and small businesses, was once true: that babies are an asset rather than a burden.

    My parents have been self-employed all my life. I can pretty much guaran-damn-tee that at no point during my childhood that my sister and I were assets to the business. Unless “sitting in the office bitching that there’s nothing to do during the summer” counts as beng an asset.

    And I’m guessing, and this s a wild ass guess, but I can’t imagine that you want a 12 year operating modern farm equipment.

    Finally, I can’t imagine kids in urban areas at any time, were assets. Atleast not since child labor laws…. Oh, I get it

  8. 8
    Martin says:

    Using 35 years of data from the General Social Survey, two Wharton School economists, Betsey Stevenson and Justin Wolfers, made the case in 2009 that women’s happiness appeared to be declining over time despite their advances in the work force and education.

    Maybe it’s because science delivered them things like birth control and you fucktards keep calling them sluts for using it?

  9. 9
    g says:

    I’m gonna let the Duggars offset the fact that I only had one kid – OK? Does that math work out for them?

    The pay-off here is that my kid is well-adjusted, educated, smart and working, while who the fuck knows what the Duggar kids are going to do? I’d say statistically, at least 3 of them will be gay and six will have substance abuse problems, and at least 3 will have serious psycological issues.

  10. 10
    dead existentialist says:

    What of the fact, widely reported earlier this week, that 26% of American women are on some kind of mental-health medication for anxiety and depression and related problems?

    Maybe because they know a nag and busy-body like Ms Eberstadt?

  11. 11
    Comrade Mary says:

    I never let my ovaries do their thing, but then again, I’m Canadian. You really don’t want us snowbacks over-running you guys.

    Sarah, I admire your ad hoc solution to putting your name at the top of the post. Well done!

  12. 12
    JASON says:

    “one driven by the leftist insistence that sexual license be, well, licensed by the state, non-judgmentally and consequence-free”

    There is a definition of license in this statement that seems contradictory here.

    Also: “Self-centered Baby Boomer liberalism”

    When did being self-centered start being a problem for these assholes?

  13. 13
    DDon says:

    I have to start of by saying I really, really like this blog. And the commenters. Especially Sarah. Actually, I love reading this blog.

    But the IT quality of this blog stinks. I use Internet Explorer (dont even get me started as to why I should use your personal favorite).

    In the past, paragraph text would not format correctly until I refreshed the page multiple times.

    In the recent past, I got a weird sub set of headlines, with no way to link to the full story, until I clicked on the main link.

    Today (with ironic thanks) I see a new format, with every story (sorrowfully) center justified? It’s like I’m reading the cheap books on my Nook.

    Again – LOVE the content. But you gotta get the formatting down.

  14. 14
    Chris T. says:

    This is proof, proof I tell you, of the Vast Liberal Left Wing Conspiracy to Reverse Racist Kill Off All The Whites … by not having children! The bloody cheek!

  15. 15
    Anne Laurie says:

    One the one hand, Walsh uses the word ‘gantlet’ correctly, which speaks well for the people who educated him. On the other, I don’t want to know how he thinks a bunch of unplanned children can be made “no longer just a consumer unit, but a productive enterprise”, unless there’s more money in downscale reality shows like Eight Plus Kate, Toddlers & Tiaras, and Mamma’s Duggar’s Clown-Car Va-jay-jay than one would suspect?

  16. 16
    Ash Can says:

    Shorter Michael Walsh: “Gah! People of color are taking over the world! White women need to start having more equally white babies to stop this trend!”

    Shorter Mary Eberstadt: (smacking riding crop in palm) “What you need is a little discipline, young lady.”

    Shorter Jeff Jacoby: “Mitt Romney is a Republican just like Ronald Reagan was. What more could young people ask?”

    And hats off to you, SPT, for braving the fever swamp for us. All those years of washing hallucinogens down with Laphroaig for breakfast have evidently inured you to the myriad diseases found therein.

    (Edited to add more hard returns between paragraphs — this new format is weirding me out.)

    Edited again: Really? No spaces between paragraphs? Really?

  17. 17
    samara morgan says:

    oh c’mon Sarah….in all your travels you have never been to Bolzano?
    To see Otzi the Iceman at the South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology?
    the interesting thing about Otzi…is that in the last 5000 years or so 2/3 of the loci on the Y chromosome have gone dark…they code for nothing.
    IPOF the Y only codes for aggression and the delivery vehicle anymore, both of which homo sap can do without.

    does this mean the XY are evolving into XX?
    And surely you have read Adam’s Curse.

    the great enemy of conservatism is not liberalism….it is evolution.
    no..it is not the dearth of white babies conservatives should fear…it is the brave new world of the future where toilet seats are made in one piece and only female babies are born via in vitro and ovum recombination.
    ;)

  18. 18
    danielx says:

    Leftist suicide cult…right. Where oh where is the modern day Jim Jones, without whose guidance and Kool-Aide we are doomed to a long drawn out agony of racial extinction due to birth control and libertine behavior.

    I for one would rather just get it over with quickly…if I wasn’t busy trying to raise and provide for one child and in my spare moments engage in all the libertine behavior I have the time, money and energy to engage in, which ain’t a hell of a lot.

    This is infuriating, and I’m not even female. Where do these sanctimonious fucks get off, anyway? Maybe they could suggest an American version of Bund Deutscher Mädel (BDM)? That’s League of German Girls, for y’all philistines out there. Note: “…the lectures of Hitler Youth and the BDM on the need to produce more children produced several illegitimate children, which neither the mothers nor the possible fathers regarded as problematic.” Had to defend against those slavering Muslim – er, Slav – hordes, don’t you know.

    Whatever political agenda/reasons are put forth, the current horseshit regarding contraception (and abortion for that matter) is about male control, and nothing but. Rick Santorum bloviating about sexual behavior based on the teachings of the Catholic Church…horseshit is putting it kindly. I’m supposed to take the Catholic Church’s moral position on anything sexually related seriously? Hypocrisy, thy name is priest, bishop, cardinal or pope. That doesn’t even get into wetsuits, dildos, diaper fetishes or rentboys, which seem to be more fundamentalist fetishes and pursuits. The Catholic hierarchy seem to be more into sodomy with minors, whether engaging in or concealing.

    I don’t give a rusty goddamn what other people do as consenting adults. But I resent the living shit out of being told I’m a bad person, or that my wife is, or past girlfriends, or sisters, or female friends, because of sexual behavior or the use of birth control – which is what shithead-at-large Michael Walsh is saying. Dare one think that he has issues because none of these shameless libidinous harlots were interested in doing the horizontal bop, much less swinging from chandeliers or any other non-missionary position, with him? I could certainly understand why, since in my somewhat limited experience women are not generally attracted to sanctimonious assholes. Or does he perchance seek out the services of professionals? It would be irresponsible not to speculate. Particularly when the gap between preaching and practice on the part of many prominent Republicans, sexually speaking, is roughly the size of the Grand Canyon. (Yeah, you, Newt – I’m talkin’ to you, you adulterous pigfucker.)

    Okay, it’s late for my blood pressure to mount this way, so I shall resort to a Bad Elmer’s Porter and some Neville Brothers to sooth my fevered mind before bedtime.

  19. 19

    @samara morgan:

    If I could put you and Michael Walsh in a room for fifteen minutes, my dear, I could sell tickets and make a killing on the popcorn concession.

  20. 20
    pkdz says:

    I remember reading about declining fertility rates in the NYT magazine. Author thought the United States was still at the replacement rate (not lower, like Europe), because of our acceptance of different roles. Italy has strict gender roles; women have even fewer children as a result.

  21. 21

    Aha. Sarah is Tom Levenson.

  22. 22
    Arclite says:

    @Martin:

    Maybe it’s because science delivered them things like birth control and you fucktards keep calling them sluts for using it?

    Studies on happiness show that the more control you have over your life, the less happy you are, b/c you feel responsible for the bad things that happen to you.

  23. 23
    Arclite says:

    Leaving aside the argument that the planet can barely support the population we have currently and we should be trying to reduce it, if conservatives REALLY wanted to support a baby boom they should be implementing policies that support more children:

    .

    – Free public preschool starting at age 2, so that parents can return to work.

    – Medicaid availability for all children 18 or younger

    – Subsidized daycare 24/7 so that parents can get a break when they need/want.

    .

    Happiness studies show that DINKs/singles are happier than people with kids. No wonder people aren’t having children. Giving parents at least a few of the freedoms and opportunities that DINKs/Singles have would go far in encouraging people to have more kids. And even with tax incentives having a kid will set you back 10s of 1000s of dollars over your life time, even more if you pay for their college. Free/subsidized child services help ease this pain and encourage more people to have kids.

    .

    Funny how the right will lament the decline of the birthrate, but won’t consider any of the actual policies that would encourage its increase.

  24. 24
    JoyfulA says:

    @Martin: I, too, was unhappy in the first half of 2009. I’d bought a house and couldn’t sell my old one at increasingly lower prices. I couldn’t get any work to pay my two mortgages because my clients all cut back and were either trying to outsource to Asia to save money or trying to insource to avoid laying off full-time staff. My IRA sank daily. Who wasn’t unhappy in 2009?

    Now, I feel fine. The Great Recession is over, at least for me.

  25. 25
    MonkeyBoy says:

    The trick will be restoring what, in the days of family-owned farms and small businesses, was once true: that babies are an asset rather than a burden.

    I thought the economic/biological arguments about litter size were:
    __
    1) If your children are likely to die before they reproduce then it is best to start early and have many in the hope that some will survive to give grandchildren. This can be seen in poor areas which have high birth and death rates.
    __
    2) If your children are likely to produce offspring then limiting them lets you give each child more economic and social support to help them be more successful in life.
    __
    The problem with having a large number of children on a family owned farm is how do you split up the assets on the parent’s death. The only stable solution to this problem seems to be Primogeniture – marry off the girl children so they are somebody else’s problem and give the whole farm to the oldest boy as long as he is not a complete idiot.

  26. 26
    Yutsano says:

    @MonkeyBoy:

    The only stable solution to this problem seems to be Primogeniture – marry off the girl children so they are somebody else’s problem and give the whole farm to the oldest boy as long as he is not a complete idiot.

    Firsts sons got the land. Second sons fight wars. The remainder go to the priesthood or get cast off. The Middle Ages ran that way for quite some time in fact. Then some dude named Guttenberg made reading easy.

  27. 27
    Suffern ACE says:

    Criminies. It’s not baby boomers that made unpalatable state policies to adjust family size for the benefit of the race or the state or “civilization”. Something happened in the middle of the last century that kind of knocked the life out of that idea in the west. Hopefully for good. But shitheads gotta spew, so I’m not hopeful for the continued death of that idea in the long run.

  28. 28
    samara morgan says:

    @Sarah, Proud and Tall: well…pretty boring match….i’d be wearin’ walsh’s guts for garters in 20sec flat.
    when Chris Mooney’s new book hits the stands there will be plenty o’ bloodletting for everyone. sell seats for that.

    no one but the irrepressible Arianna has dared discuss Mooney’s article.
    not a peep out of the conservo-sphere.
    it certainly hasn’t been discussed here, in the foul nest of IQ bioludditry that is BJ.
    like i said, liberalism is not the Great Enemy of conservatism…evolution is.
    conservatism is actually as dead as the dinosaurs.
    its just the the tiny little hip brains haven’t gotten the message yet.
    2008 was the extinction event at the K-T boundary for conservatives.
    they just refuse to admit it.
    ;)

  29. 29

    Are they really doubling down on contraception? I mean, is it just the crazy cheer leaders that only the base see, or do non-political people see they’re still pushing this?

  30. 30
    THE says:

    @samara morgan:

    the interesting thing about Otzi…is that in the last 5000 years or so 2/3 of the loci on the Y chromosome have gone dark…they code for nothing.

    I wonder how that stands up now?
    They just published Otzi’s almost whole-genome earlier this year.

  31. 31
    Pseudonym says:

    Left a comment for Mr. Walsh:

    This essay was pretty opaque for all the indignation it evinced. So for the good of society we have to give up our individual rights to choose whether and when to have children? Are you arguing that women should be forced to get pregnant and give birth? Do you think contraception should be outlawed? Discouraged? Or are you just pouting about all that non-conceptive sexytime kids are having these days? And are you endorsing a return to child labor, despite the meager value that young uneducated unskilled workers could provide to the economy? Or do you want to just go the way of countries with no social nets, where the elderly depend on their descendants to support them, and millions live in abject poverty?

  32. 32
    RedKitten says:

    it hurts society, by robbing it of its future and burdening those lucky kids who make it through the contraceptive/abortifacient gantlet with an unpayable debt to the very people who tried to get rid of them.

    Wow — so now they’re saying that the only POSSIBLE way that any of us leftists could have had kids was because our birth control failed? That NONE of our children were wanted?

    That’s fucking offensive.

  33. 33
    Zandar says:

    Eventually, any winger discussion of birth control leads to concern trolling over whether women or minorities (and especially minority women) are “better off” that birth control exists. We hear “Well look at all the kids without fathers in the African-American and Latino communities and increase in instances of sexual assault against women. It’s a direct result of birth control, there can’t be any other reason.”

    As if weakening of laws that help prevent sexual assault and constant incarceration of black and Latino men and rising income inequality has nothing to do with it. It’s all about the pill.

    Assholes.

  34. 34
    Linda says:

    The right wonders why they are losing the propaganda campaign in which they try to frame the birth control issue as “religious oppression,” and this piece is an example of why they lose: they keep showing their ass. It’s really about “why can’t we boss those slut’s uteri around, like the good old days”.

    It reminds me of the Jimmy Breslin column in which he says ex-New Yorkers claim they are moving to Florida for the weather. But after saying this for a minute, they spend 20 minutes talking about all the minorities they left behind in New York. In both instances, when you try to cover your ass, it can sometimes be too big.

  35. 35
    Linda says:

    Also, too, how can NRO explain the drop in birth rates in the developing countries: : http://www.worldbank.org/depwe.....beg_03.pdf.

    Normal people would chalk this up to feeling secure that most of your kids will live to maturity, and the desire to give each child materially more and a better start. But how will NRO hang this on Western feminism? Stay tuned.

  36. 36
    MonkeyBoy says:

    Note: for those of you who would like your paragraphs to be separated by blank lines you can use my hack, copyright 2009, to generate them.
    __
    To make a blank line use a line that just contains two under score characters.
    __
    This work because our FYWP still contains a module for character delimited font style. Wrapping some text in a pair of underscores, _like this_, I believe will put “like this” in italics. Thus the blank lines this generates are really italic nothings.

  37. 37
    Neddie Jingo says:

    Surely, this is the ultimate expression of the suicide cult that is the modern Left, a subset of libertine takers that so loathes itself that it will dragoon the makers into underwriting the chalices of tasty hemlock it’s so eager for everybody to quaff in order to put itself out of its misery.

    This…sentence….

    …Makes hemlock sound quite tasty.

    I’m off to dragoon some makers into quaffing underwritten chalices. Might put me out of my misery. I’m a libertine taker, after all.

    (Numbered comments, please, BTW. And please, please, please restore block paragraphs, with line spaces between. My eyes want to join a suicide cult that loathes itself. Dragooning.)

  38. 38
    Suffern ACE says:

    @RedKitten: Well the whole concept of the anchor baby is that Mexicans have children to fuck the INS. And black people have their children for the welfare checks. So yeah, liberals only having unwanted babies is par for the course. If you loved children you’d be a conservative because only white conservatives have children for the proper reasons. Smug kind of goes with the territory.

  39. 39
    Betsy says:

    Like FORTY-THREE PERCENT of Gen X women, I never had kids because (1) school debt (2) no safety net (3) good-paying jobs are gone (4) good benefits are gone (5) I’d been told since age 20 by everyone in the media that I would have to save for my own retirement.

    I wanted THREE children, but I will never have ANY. Thanks to the Reagan-Bush-Shrub implementation of vicious, people-hating policies. Thanks, A$$40Le$.

    If this Walsh person (whoever he is) wants people to have children, he should bring back real jobs, cut the cost of college, bring back the safety net, and make a family-friendly world. Instead, he’s an idiot.

    Here’s more on the problem and the 43 percent figure: http://www.phdinparenting.com/.....3BcT8XNnko

  40. 40
    Betsy says:

    @Arclite: Word!

  41. 41
    DW says:

    @pkdz: Yes, that article pointed out the European countries with the highest fertility rates had the highest female labor force participation rates. The NR’s underlying premise is frankly nonsense – the overall decline in fertility is due to industrialization, not culture. If feminism is to blame, why does Iran have a lower fertility rate than France? Why are Japan and Singapore facing demographic implosions? In a pre-industrial society, most people are peasant farmers. It doesn’t take much labor to produce a functional adult, and it’s easy to integrate with the economic life. In a modern society, it takes far more labor to produce a functional adult – getting people literate and numerate takes work. And because this is labor intensive work, increased wealth doesn’t help much. The more this labor is dumped on female volunteers (mothers) the steeper the decline in fertility. Feminism if anything acts against the fertility drop. It would male more sense to blame Adam Smith than Betty Friedan.

  42. 42
    Svensker says:

    Alas, it does hurt somebody — it hurts society, by robbing it of its future and burdening those lucky kids who make it through the contraceptive/abortifacient gantlet with an unpayable debt to the very people who tried to get rid of them.

    You know what also hurts society? Stupid wars, bad health care, and oligarchs stealing all the money.

    ETA: Well off societies have lower birth rates because, oddly enough, women choose to decide for themselves how many kids to have. How do these clowns even get paid to write this crap?

  43. 43
    samara morgan says:

    @THE: haven’t seen any retractions, have you?
    aggression reduction is the premise of Thirteen/Black Man, that the West is breeding aggression out of the XY, and the Y chromosome is going dark.
    what is testosterone good for anyways? starting wars?
    i wonder if dr. pinker’s Peace Outbreak theory correlates with reduced active loci on the Y.
    ;)

    and thats not my domain. im just poking the bioluddites.

  44. 44
    THE says:

    @samara morgan:
    No retractions.
    But I haven’t really noticed anything on the subject of shrinking human Y Chromosome since that book.
    And there has been a huge increase in information about paleogenetics in general and BTW Otzi’s entire genome is available online now.

    So I think I’d like to see something more recent than 2004.

  45. 45
    moonbat says:

    @Martin: Maybe it is because their salaries have been standing still or declining in that span of time while the cost of child care, health insurance, and buying a home have gone through the roof. (???) There are a few more variables that feed into the old happiness machine than who has control over your uterus….perhaps the Wall Street Journal should look into that.

  46. 46
    THE says:

    And also, Samara,
    There was this story from the Whitehead Inst. last month.

  47. 47
    gene108 says:

    What of the fact, widely reported earlier this week, that 26% of American women are on some kind of mental-health medication for anxiety and depression and related problems?

    Because mental illness is far more prevalent than people realize and even though 26% of people are on some drug for mental illness, it’s still seriously under diagnosed.

    Of course there are different kinds of mental illness and some people are on medications for only a short time and get off, while others have chronic problems and will never be off their meds.
    The author is basically criticizing people for getting medicine to treat a medical condition. I mean, how often do people criticize diabetics for taking insulin?
    This just illustrates the fact, we do not do enough to address the issue of mental illness as a society.

  48. 48
    Xecky Gilchrist says:

    The trick will be restoring what, in the days of family-owned farms and small businesses, was once true:

    …that there weren’t 7 billion people on the planet.

  49. 49
    Bitter Scribe says:

    There are millions of young (and not-so-young) people all over the world who would like nothing better than to come to the U.S. and work as hard as they can.

    I’m going to take a stab in the dark and guess that this NRO guy, when he’s not fulminating about dirty sluts who refuse to pop out babies, is an immigration opponent.

  50. 50
    samara morgan says:

    @THE: lolwut?
    no one is going to publish on that ….its as toxic as the heritability of IQ or political affiliation.
    do you think conservatards will read Mooney’s book?
    they will try to bury it.

  51. 51
    THE says:

    its as toxic as the heritability of IQ or political affiliation.

    I’m not sure why you think so. There’s a perfectly good theory for the decay of the Y chromosome, it’s just that it doesn’t seem to apply in real life. Not for the last 25 million years anyway, if you accept the Whitehead Institute research.
    __
    Anyway I wasn’t trying to contradict you. It’s just that I encountered that Whitehead Institute story last month, and it’s made me a lot more dubious about the whole premise. If you hadn’t seen that story, I just wanted to bring it to your attention, and ask if there was any supportive research, more recent than 2004, that you were aware of.

  52. 52

    […] Proud and Tall finds a juicy one: “The Western world is facing an unparalleled demographic crisis brought on by a […]

  53. 53
    RalfW says:

    Imagine a society in which parents get to keep more of the human capital they form by investing in their children.

    Yeah, more pining for surfs and agrarian, land-based economies presided over by a wealthy few. And of course all these wingers image themselves being the gentry and the rest of us being their plebes.

    News flash, Michael Walsh: Charles Koch thinks you’re a plebe. And will crush you under his boot.

    [Side note: So how many kids does Michael Walsh have anyway?]

  54. 54
    Allene Merzlak says:

    I like the concept of embedding communities with cameras, only wish there are more stories revolving around the ways of lives in these various communities. Is it possible to also hear some stories which might be strange to our ears but are a way of life with another community, stories that lie in the genre of a poor couple adopting a monkey for a son and planning its wedding. Or, a young man marrying a tree in an effort to beat destiny.

  55. 55
    RalfW says:

    @JASON:

    Also: “Self-centered Baby Boomer liberalism”
    When did being self-centered start being a problem for these assholes?

    I’m pretty sure most of the self-centered Baby Boomerism I see is concentrated in the red, McMansion suburbs of the cities I frequent. Are there self-absorbed liberals? Sure, some. But for fvck’s sake, its Republicans between the ages of 47 and 67 who think the are the g.d. center of the entire known universe.

  56. 56
    RalfW says:

    @MonkeyBoy:

    The only stable solution to this problem seems to be Primogeniture – marry off the girl children so they are somebody else’s problem and give the whole farm to the oldest boy as long as he is not a complete idiot.

    Yes. And any boys after the first “get” to be Priests. A spinster Aunt or two are handy for child care, maybe milking the goats, and only eat an occasional egg and maybe a crust of bread.

  57. 57
    Berial says:

    @JASON:

    When did being self-centered start being a problem for these assholes?

    When they realized that THEIR social security might be at risk.

  58. 58
    samara morgan says:

    @THE: meh.
    i guess it might interesting to correlate Y decay with Pinkers findings on the decline of warfare over the last 10000 years….or the last 5300 years in case of Otzi. i don’t know if there are other samples.
    can’t get DNA from fossil remains.

    the interesting thing i said, that you are ignoring per usual, is that conservatism’s great enemy is not liberalism, but evolution.

  59. 59
    THE says:

    @samara morgan:
    Didn’t you click on my Whitehead Institute link?
    EDIT: Read the whole item.

  60. 60
    samara morgan says:

    @THE: what has that got to do with Otzi?
    his Y is only 5300 years old.
    again, praps theres a correlation over the last 10k years with Pinkers decline of warfare.

  61. 61
    THE says:

    If there’s no decay over 25 million years, then there’s no decay over 5300 years either.
    __
    But in any case, if someone wants to make a case today, about changes in gene expression since Otzi’s day, they would need to use the latest sequence data for the argument to carry any weight. That’s why the whole research needs to be updated. 2004 data has been rendered obsolete by the latest (almost) full genome sequencing.

  62. 62
    THE says:

    Ooh look: I see comment numbers.

    Edit: Nope. Gone again.

  63. 63
    Tony the Wonderhorse says:

    That’s not the version I learned. I was taught it came from graffiti found in Berkeley:

    A man without a god is like a fish without a bicycle.

    Dunno whose came first but I do know I’m less of an idiot.

  64. 64
    samara morgan says:

    @THE: you are so credulous.
    they don’t prove no decay.
    they HYPOTHESIZE no decay.

  65. 65
    THE says:

    @samara morgan: Maybe you need to look up and read both papers.
    __
    I’m not going to say that reconstructing genomic phylogenies is theory-free, but I would say that the theory is pretty sound overall. i.e. consistent with population genetics and probability theory. Consistent broadly, with the patterns we infer from the fossil record, etc.
    __
    It’s also pretty consistent internally e.g. selection-driven genetic evolution vs. neutral mutation drift — which you can test because of the redundancies in the genetic code.
    __
    There is a vast literature on this subject. Ask someone like Razib. This is beyond my detailed knowledge, although I have read enough on it to “get” the general picture.
    __
    Best you read both papers Samara. Reassure yourself.

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