The Sixth Day
Thursday, January 29, 2009
  Pelosi and Family Planning
ABC's THIS WEEK:

STEPHANOPOULOS: Hundreds of millions of dollars to expand family planning services. How is that stimulus?

PELOSI: Well, the family planning services reduce cost. They reduce cost. The states are in terrible fiscal budget crises now and part of what we do for children's health, education and some of those elements are to help the states meet their financial needs. One of those - one of the initiatives you mentioned, the contraception, will reduce costs to the states and to the federal government.

STEPHANOPOULOS: So no apologies for that?

PELOSI: No apologies. No. we have to deal with the consequences of the downturn in our economy.

My Comments:
This may be the most Hitler-like statement ever made by a U.S. politician. Eliminating children (Hitler called unproductive people "useless eaters"), is not the road to economic growth. Any economist will tell you that population growth is one of the key conditions for economic growth.

It may seem like a short-term solution because of the costs of educating and caring for children, but in the long run, children grow up and become producers. Over a lifetime, each person produces many times more than they consume.

Europe, faces a bleak economic future because of a declining population. The taxes to pay government, especially social insurance for the elderly, can only come from a growing labor force. This problem will devastate Europe in the next forty years.

You are probably familiar with the concept of exponential growth, that is growth that becomes faster and faster in numerical terms even though the percentage change is the same every year. What you may not realize is that populations also decline along an exponential path when the birth rate is not sufficient for replacement. That is to say, it begins slowly and then grows at a faster and faster rate every year.

My recollection is that in Italy the birth rate is 1.2 children per woman versus a replacement rate of 2.1. If present trends persist (they have been in place for years), then by 2050 Europe will have lost one third of its population. Do you think we have a crises in the U.S. partly because of an excess of houses over demand? What do you think it is like in Europe and what will be like going forward?

I understand that politicians have a hard time thinking past the next election, but providing "services" to lower birth rates is a long road that leads to economic suicide.

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Commentary about all things human; life, the Christian religion, ethics, politics, economics, sociology, art, anything to do with twenty-first century American culture. Perhaps I will inform, perhaps I will anger and frustrate, but I hope always to make you think!

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I grew up in Kansas in the 1950's - 60's. I attended Kansas State (B.S. in Soc. Science) and Washburn Law School (J.D.). My wife and I have been married for over thirty years and are the parents of three grown sons.

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