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Old 05-21-2020, 08:07 AM
 
5,956 posts, read 1,755,840 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mysticaltyger View Post
No wonder the middle class has shrunk
Both the lower-class and the middle-class have indeed declined -- but for the best of all possible reasons. They've been movin' on up to the upper class.

That's a good thing

Quote:
Originally Posted by mysticaltyger View Post
and income and wealth inequality have increased.

That's a good thing.
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Old 05-21-2020, 08:28 AM
 
Location: Sector 001
7,767 posts, read 7,091,418 times
Reputation: 8992
It's time to stop relying on welfare systems that are designed as ponzi schemes and require 6 new working people to support paying the ones who are taking from the system. Lower birth rates are good for the environment, and the same people who want to pay out all this welfare to people yet are trying to get everyone to breed and at the same time want to keep carbon emissions down all the while they are visiting 30 different countries and encouraging population growth when the planet already has nearly 8 billion people... they are biting off more than they can chew... they have to make a decision...

keep paying out welfare programs to be compassionate and encourage breeding or risk bankrupting the financial system or cut back on breeding, get more people to be responsible and teach them how to fish so less are government dependent and maybe get a monetary system that isn't so dependent on perpetual "growth" of the money supply... and also maybe cut back on travel and actually do things in one's own life to be green instead of just saying they want to be green but living a lavish lifestyle...

People want everything, they aren't willing to compromise.. they want it ALL, and that is a problem going forward. They want green living but want to travel, want a healthy ecosystem but want people to breed more and keep consuming and building crap to prop up outdated banking systems... A population REDUCTION to 4 billion people over the next couple of centuries would create a natural deflation in asset prices as there is more "stuff" (houses, land) with less demand. It would create less need to clear cut rainforest to grow palm oil and raise farm cattle... that's the way we should be heading... not grow the population to 30 billion people... have it stabilize under 10 billion and stay there, forever, until we start terraforming and colonizing other planets.

Right now outdated fractional reserve central debt based banking systems and the corporations that operate within them drive a lot of this "growth" obsession and greed... the first step is a banking system and system of government (including welfare system) not dependent on perpetual growth and consumption. After that we can decide what to do.
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Old 05-21-2020, 08:29 AM
 
5,956 posts, read 1,755,840 times
Reputation: 10430
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill the Butcher View Post
So what happens? the boogie man gets us?

So the economy tanks? Big deal. We will get through it. Better long term to have less people and get away from an economy that depends on Wyoming eventually having the population of 40 million people. I’m not advocating for greatly reducing our population but if we can hold steady to somewhere around where we are now that would be great.
I understand your points.

Demographics isn't merely about the total number of human beings, but also about their age cohort. Let's say we could magically hold our population steady to somewhere around where we are now, as you suggest.

One hypothetical that conforms to that desire is a uniform age distribution. Another hypothetical that conforms to that desire is one with "booms" and "busts" and "boomlets" - when charted, it looks more like a roller-coaster. Actually, it looks more like a snake that swallowed an elephant.

As that elephant makes its way through the snake, there are good and bad things that happen. Schools need to expand capacity -- and then shrink capacity. Eventually, that elephant reaches middle-age, and we need more capacity for health-care that the middle-aged consume such as mammograms, colonoscopies, blood pressure and cholesterol medicine and the like. And then that age cohort of the elephant starts to retire and tries to downsize their homes and maybe move to retirement destinations, which need to expand - but then again that only works if the retiring senior can find someone to buy his house.

Finally, they start to draw on Social Security. And there are fewer and fewer workers working to pay into Social Security to support the recipients.

Take a look at this table:

https://www.ssa.gov/history/ratios.html

It shows year-by-year the ratio of workers-paying to recipients-drawing Social Security from 1940 through to 2013, which is the most recent data available.

The growth in recipients-drawing SS and the growth in workers-paying-into SS remained roughly proportional from 1975 through 2008, during which time there were 3.2–3.4 workers for each retiree. Then it changed. Since 2009 this ratio has consistently dropped, and as of 2013 there were only 2.8 workers working & paying SS for each retiree collecting SS.

The ratio of workers to retirees is projected to continue falling. The planning assumption even a few years ago was that by 2034, the best-case scenario is 2.3 workers paying for each retiree, and in the worst-case scenario that ratio is 2 workers per retiree.

The current birth-rate data show that it will get worse than the worst case scenario above. Much worse.

So, you asked

Quote:
"What happens? The boogeyman gets us?"
Instead of the boogeyman, the senior cohort will cross the finish line to collect SS, only to find that the then-working, small cohort will say, "Whoah! I can't afford 30% of my compensation going to pay for you to play shuffleboard! It's time to cut SS benefits down so that the amount taken from my paycheck is proportionate to the amount taken from YOUR paycheck way back in 2020."

Thus, it isn't merely about the total number of humans alive; it is also about the age cohorts.
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Old 05-21-2020, 08:35 AM
 
80,166 posts, read 78,518,791 times
Reputation: 56679
Quote:
Originally Posted by RationalExpectations View Post
I understand your points.

Demographics isn't merely about the total number of human beings, but also about their age cohort. Let's say we could magically hold our population steady to somewhere around where we are now, as you suggest.

One hypothetical that conforms to that desire is a uniform age distribution. Another hypothetical that conforms to that desire is one with "booms" and "busts" and "boomlets" - when charted, it looks more like a roller-coaster. Actually, it looks more like a snake that swallowed an elephant.

As that elephant makes its way through the snake, there are good and bad things that happen. Schools need to expand capacity -- and then shrink capacity. Eventually, that elephant reaches middle-age, and we need more capacity for health-care that the middle-aged consume such as mammograms, colonoscopies, blood pressure and cholesterol medicine and the like. And then that age cohort of the elephant starts to retire and tries to downsize their homes and maybe move to retirement destinations, which need to expand - but then again that only works if the retiring senior can find someone to buy his house.

Finally, they start to draw on Social Security. And there are fewer and fewer workers working to pay into Social Security to support the recipients.

Take a look at this table:

https://www.ssa.gov/history/ratios.html

It shows year-by-year the ratio of workers-paying to recipients-drawing Social Security from 1940 through to 2013, which is the most recent data available.

The growth in recipients-drawing SS and the growth in workers-paying-into SS remained roughly proportional from 1975 through 2008, during which time there were 3.2–3.4 workers for each retiree. Then it changed. Since 2009 this ratio has consistently dropped, and as of 2013 there were only 2.8 workers working & paying SS for each retiree collecting SS.

The ratio of workers to retirees is projected to continue falling. The planning assumption even a few years ago was that by 2034, the best-case scenario is 2.3 workers paying for each retiree, and in the worst-case scenario that ratio is 2 workers per retiree.

The current birth-rate data show that it will get worse than the worst case scenario above. Much worse.

So, you asked



Instead of the boogeyman, the senior cohort will cross the finish line to collect SS, only to find that the then-working, small cohort will say, "Whoah! I can't afford 30% of my compensation going to pay for you to play shuffleboard! It's time to cut SS benefits down so that the amount taken from my paycheck is proportionate to the amount taken from YOUR paycheck way back in 2020."

Thus, it isn't merely about the total number of humans alive; it is also about the age cohorts.
the gov't will deal with funding ss in the 11th hour ... it is to big of a deal to this country not to fill it up ..don't you worry we find trillions at the drop of a hat when we need it .

in fact they can fix it today ... if they increase the employee share 1.25% and the employer share 1.25% and remove the cap it is funded fully .
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Old 05-21-2020, 08:41 AM
 
5,956 posts, read 1,755,840 times
Reputation: 10430
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oklazona Bound View Post
Thanks I read it. So essentially the only issue that WSJ had was we need younger people with jobs so they can support all the retired people on social security.
I think there are two separate issues:
  • The actual data - a drop in birth rates
  • The journalists interpretation of the data

The latter point is always limited by space (column-inches). The SS support issue is just one of numerous issues. I can imagine a college senior thesis being written about the implications of the actual data.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oklazona Bound View Post
How about we raise the minimum age to 70 for SS and stop sending money to people who have say 100,000 or more a year in other pensions or other income? Then we can stop pretending that people are actually funding their retirement through social security, when its really a ponzi scheme where young people are paying for older peoples retirement.
Those policy proposals - and others - are certainly worthy of discussion. Note that each of them is "how do we treat the symptom" rather than address the root cause.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oklazona Bound View Post
And the talk has been automation will take away lots of low skilled and even higher skilled jobs. We probably will not have enough jobs for all the people wanting to work with the current amount of kids being born.
There I disagree. I think the reverse will be true.
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Old 05-21-2020, 09:23 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
27,594 posts, read 20,591,792 times
Reputation: 33426
If we're going to encourage childbirth, we need to encourage breeding by the right kinds of people.

The birthrate for college educated, white collar professionals is really low. Those kids are the ones that have the parental involvement and resources that best positions them for success. The birth rates for the poor and working classes are higher, and many of those kids will not have the parental involvement or resources to succeed in life.

I turned 34 a month ago. It is rare to find an educated, professional woman in her mid 20s - mid 40s with more than two kids. Many have just one, and some have none. The peers I know with large families are almost always working class or below, and usually very religious and believe in traditional values.

The US needs to have more support for families once the baby is born in the form of affordable child care, parental leave, etc. A colleague on my team had a son born this year. Parental leave was all of a week. Childcare expenses aren't much less than what many working class women would make anyway.

If you're a single, childless woman and able-bodied, you're not going to be eligible for much in the way of government assistance. If that woman has a kid, that benefit eligibility dramatically increases. We incentivize the wrong types of behavior and have things completely backwards.
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Old 05-21-2020, 09:52 AM
 
Location: Portal to the Pacific
6,345 posts, read 5,869,081 times
Reputation: 8089
Quote:
Originally Posted by Serious Conversation View Post
If we're going to encourage childbirth, we need to encourage breeding by the right kinds of people.

The birthrate for college educated, white collar professionals is really low. Those kids are the ones that have the parental involvement and resources that best positions them for success. The birth rates for the poor and working classes are higher, and many of those kids will not have the parental involvement or resources to succeed in life.

I turned 34 a month ago. It is rare to find an educated, professional woman in her mid 20s - mid 40s with more than two kids. Many have just one, and some have none. The peers I know with large families are almost always working class or below, and usually very religious and believe in traditional values.

The US needs to have more support for families once the baby is born in the form of affordable child care, parental leave, etc. A colleague on my team had a son born this year. Parental leave was all of a week. Childcare expenses aren't much less than what many working class women would make anyway.

If you're a single, childless woman and able-bodied, you're not going to be eligible for much in the way of government assistance. If that woman has a kid, that benefit eligibility dramatically increases. We incentivize the wrong types of behavior and have things completely backwards.
I live amongst, and am a part of, this educated, white collar professional group.. definitely on the older side with only a few reproductive years left (that will NOT be utilized).

Many of the white collar professional companies have started to give rather generous leaves of absences for both parents (check out AMZN). Also many of these jobs can be done from home anyway. It's not just about the first 6 months or year of the baby's life, but the entire child-rearing process.

What I see many in this cohort lacking are... extended family. Specifically grandparents. My neighborhood is a bunch of transplants like myself, many from abroad, like my husband. We came here for the white collar jobs.

In additional to the public and economic resources required to raise the kids in the way we want to raise them, we really need social support in the way of invested family. I'm not talking about visits every couple months (or in my case, less), I'm talking about an extra set of hands during daily life that you don't have to pay money for.

Also most educated parents-to-be know that the real expense isn't the 3-4 years of childcare as much as the 4+ years of higher education. It's daunting to think about paying for childcare and saving for both retirement and college education at the same time.

I do know several families with more than 2 kids, but they tend to be much closer, or a part of, the C-suites in these major corporations. They tend to be Mormon (no surprise there). Or blended families. Or already financially independent.

I wanted more kids (more than 2), but my husband didn't and I can easily see why. It was going to be a lot more money throughout the first 22-25 years. I was already over the age of 30 (which brings up another point.. when women are starting families at 28-30 years old.. who wants to be birthing a 3rd at age 35+ ?).

You know, just writing about the pressure of having to birth more babies to support society is making me feel defensive! I imagine a lot of younger women will feel the same and say "bug off".

There is a bit of a pandora's box.
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Old 05-21-2020, 10:06 AM
 
Location: Oregon, formerly Texas
6,383 posts, read 4,326,658 times
Reputation: 11068
Quote:
Originally Posted by Serious Conversation View Post
If we're going to encourage childbirth, we need to encourage breeding by the right kinds of people.

The birthrate for college educated, white collar professionals is really low. Those kids are the ones that have the parental involvement and resources that best positions them for success. The birth rates for the poor and working classes are higher, and many of those kids will not have the parental involvement or resources to succeed in life.

I turned 34 a month ago. It is rare to find an educated, professional woman in her mid 20s - mid 40s with more than two kids. Many have just one, and some have none. The peers I know with large families are almost always working class or below, and usually very religious and believe in traditional values.

The US needs to have more support for families once the baby is born in the form of affordable child care, parental leave, etc. A colleague on my team had a son born this year. Parental leave was all of a week. Childcare expenses aren't much less than what many working class women would make anyway.

If you're a single, childless woman and able-bodied, you're not going to be eligible for much in the way of government assistance. If that woman has a kid, that benefit eligibility dramatically increases. We incentivize the wrong types of behavior and have things completely backwards.
The more educated a woman gets, the fewer children she will have. That has been true since the middle ages.

I know a few middle and upper class families who have 4+ kids. Typically ones that are highly religious.

There's no incentive in the world that can change the amount of children women want to have. If they don't want 5 they are not going to have 5. We're not the only country that's thought about this. The more interesting chapters of the book I linked to earlier was his research into various countries' efforts to increase fertility. There have been countries that tried all kinds of things to include holidays for married couples intended for them to have sex (South Korea, Singapore, Denmark), putting out PR that sex/children is patriotic (Singapore again), giving families prizes when they have children (Russia), or charging higher taxes to childless couples (Romania). Or just paying them money. None of it makes much of a dent.

What policy does work is facilitating people as much as possible with policies that make it easier for them to have the children they want to have. If they want 3, but can only afford 2, we should be doing what we can to help them have 3.
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Old 05-21-2020, 10:22 AM
 
1,963 posts, read 503,478 times
Reputation: 3165
Quote:
Originally Posted by redguard57 View Post
The more educated a woman gets, the fewer children she will have. That has been true since the middle ages.
Dr. Lillian Moller Gilbreth.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Serious Conversation View Post
If we're going to encourage childbirth, we need to encourage breeding by the right kinds of people.
Well, you're going to run into a few sticky patches defining that group. You might want to look up the history of the (US) Eugenics Record Office, among ozzer sings.
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Old 05-21-2020, 10:32 AM
 
1,963 posts, read 503,478 times
Reputation: 3165
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oklazona Bound View Post
And the talk has been automation will take away lots of low skilled and even higher skilled jobs. We probably will not have enough jobs for all the people wanting to work with the current amount of kids being born. Seems like a horrible idea to encourage bringing even more kids into the world.
Quote:
Originally Posted by RationalExpectations View Post
There I disagree. I think the reverse will be true.
You think automation is a bust and there will somehow be more jobs in... the next fifty years?

How about if you come back and revisit this, oh, about next summer when the full effect of massive unemployment has been felt... and a vast number of jobs that do not return are due to automation being implemented right now. It's likely that the timeline for vastly increasing permanent unemployment has been kicked ahead five to ten years by this crisis.

And while I won't say that outcome — unemployment by traditional measure in the 30%+ range (at which point the traditional measures no longer have much meaning) — is inevitable, there aren't many viable alternatives.
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