The end of babies?

I’m chasing my own fertility journey at present — you can generally tell what I’m chasing based on what I’m currently blogging about, and here’s something on fertility journeys, as well as something on jelly being placed on my scrotum — so when I see stuff about babies and growth rates and all that, my ears perk up a little. I always hate how these Census and population figure discussions default to “future workforce,” as if the only justification for having a child is that someday they can occupy a cubicle or office. In reality, we all know one of the primary justifications for having a child is Instagram likes. I mean, let’s be honest.

Here’s where the USA is since about 1790:

As noted in The New York Times morning newsletter:

That would be my big thing. I know a lot of people who wanted 2, but had 1, or wanted 4, but had 1. It’s largely a cost thing. PS — companies fucking love it when someone has four kids, because that usually means two completely-beholden worker bees (mom and dad), unless there’s some measure of familial wealth somewhere or a generous uncle who passes away of mysterious causes.

Back in November 2019 — “The Old Normal” — there was another New York Times article called “The End of Babies.” I actually emailed with the author a couple of times because the article resonated for me so much (the other random people I tend to email with are District Attorneys who prosecute crimes I saw on 48 Hours). There are a lot of good sections in that article. Here’s one:

This part also slaps:

Also this:

In sum: late-stage capitalism is probably, in some respects, the enemy of fertility, or at least desired fertility. Plus: that vaccine is making people sterile. I jest, I jest.

Here’s more:

Is it “the end of babies?” No, probably not. And maybe we will see a COVID Baby Boom — there’s some discussion of that now, and the recent Census figures didn’t take COVID deaths and births into account. Maybe we will see a roaring 20s of free-spending (uhhh, depleted savings accounts won’t be a good match-up with child care) and more. Maybe the Biden tax credits and all that will work. Maybe the USA will go full Hungary and start giving people minivans for popping out kids. There’s a lot that could happen. But I know, aside from my scrotum jelly, the faces of many people I consider friends and acquaintances thinking two kids is an absolute fiscal ceiling.

Takes?

Blogging, largely about work and how to improve it. How I make (some) money: http://thecontextofthings.com/work-with-me/

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