Re: true abundance?

From: Michael Lorrey (
Date: Tue Jan 30 2001 - 09:10:03 MST

Samantha Atkins wrote:
> Michael Lorrey wrote:
> > What I'd do is grant birth licenses based on the average education of
> > the couple. If the average is high school graduation, they get one kid.
> > For every two additional years, they get another kid. Since the data
> > shows that child bearing goes down with increasing education levels,
> > this should cause average family size to drop to between 2-3 kids per
> > couple rather quickly.
> Great. We pack college classrooms with breeders. The average has
> dropped to ZPG in most western developed countries already.

Yes it has. One problem is that most childbearing occurs below the
poverty line and to people with high school educations or less. Its the
stupid people that are breeding.

> > If you don't want this to become a dictated law, then you need to
> > promote social policies that engineer this result. For example, I'd only
> You did not cover why the result is actually so desirable as to be
> mandatory.

Good point. Population growth in most countries that has has dropped to
zero or near zero have done so because of education, specifically
education of women. You educate women, and they are less inclined, I
think, to seek fulfillment in raising children and more inclined to seek
fulfillment in careers.

> > grant welfare to individuals and families where the parent, or parents,
> > are in school, either vocational or college, and unemployment coverage
> > that goes beyond 6 months would mandate that the worker engage in
> > retraining classes and agree to move to a region of lower unemployment.
> Uh huh. This assumes a "normal world" of job opportunity distributed
> across most intelligence levels of the population. What about the
> world, by local beliefs coming rapidly, where only the top of the
> intelligence pool can be gainfully employed (with a few service jobs to
> one side)? Eventually there may not be anything a given worker can be
> trained to do that pays a living wage and there may be no region that
> requires such workers. What then?

I don't buy it.
Just as famine is not caused by lack of food but lack of distribution,
so to are high unemployment and the business cycle dependent on the
distribution of workers to where they are needed. For example, for the
past 5 years, unemployment in my local area has been below 1%, and a
minimum of a third of help wanted ads are for highly skilled positions,
and fast food restaurants are even paying $9.00 an hour plus benefits
and can't find help. I've regularly broadcast this fact in many fora
across the internet. Not one person who has ever received this
information taken advantage of it, yet I continue to hear of people
whining about getting employment in other areas of the country.

When areas like mine run into a brick wall of the labor supply, if they
cannot ship enough bodies in (or cannot find enough houses to place them
in due to development restrictions), then firms must outsource work to
other regions. This causes an outflow of capital and labor cost and cost
of living inflation that triggers the next local recession. When you get
enough highly productive places running into this brick wall at the same
time, then you get a nationwide recession, and those allegedly oppressed
people in depressed areas who refused to get off their butts and move
wind up ever poorer as a result. If we had a proper system of labor
distribution in this country, the boom and bust business cycle could be
mitigated significantly.

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