Generational Theft Needs to be Arrested is the title of an OpEd in today’s WSJ, 2/15/2013, by Mssrs Canada (president of the Harlem Children’s Zone), Druckenmiller (former president of Duquesne Capital) and Warsh (a former Federal Reserve governor).
But does their OpEd address the primary issue driving generational theft?
Because their premise is faulty. Because they have not considered the validity of that premise. Simply, their argument rests on an invalid foundation.*
What is the premise regarding generational theft? That we ALL care about future debt; that we ALL understand we cannot burden OUR – AMERICA’S – future generations with the crushing debt WE are leaving them today.
Is this a premise valid for all citizens? Do all citizens care about future generations being crushed by debt? Is it really “OUR” debt? Is it really “AMERICA’S” future?
No. No. No. And no.
Democrats are NOT having kids. Not in America. Not in Europe. Not in Japan. Not in the West. Democrats don’t believe in the future enough to populate it.
Blue State fertility is dropping, much as is the fertility in Europe and Japan. Much of the entitlement crisis across the West is a fertility crisis – not enough workers today to pay the benefits demanded by today’s recipients of those entitlement dollars. This is true not only because of the sheer – and growing – size of these entitlements demanded by Democrats, but because the entire welfare model relies on future generations paying for them – and the sizes OF these future generations have been dropping for decades.
But it is not the fertility level of all Americans that is dropping. It is the fertility level of those voting for increased social welfare policies that is dropping, leaving the bills to the children of those voting not to increase the sizes of those programs, those whose fertility levels continue to be above replacement.
Using the 2008 election and the 2010 Census, only three (small population) Blue States are over replacement (zero population growth) fertility of 2.1 children per woman during her lifetime: NV, NM and HI. Only six Blue States and DC are at 2.1 (MN, NE, IN, NC, FL, CO, DC), and only one of those (FL) is a large-population state. All other Blue States are below replacement level fertility, including those with the largest Congressional delegations, and the most electoral votes: CA, NY and IL. Only three Red States are below 2.1: KY, WV, AL.
The idea that voters who will not be living under this crushing debt, who do not have children who will be living – or trying to – under this crushing debt, will care ABOUT that crushing debt and vote to DO something about that crushing debt… is, to put it technically, nuts.
If Democrats can use generational theft to bolster their power today, to increase their standard of living today, without having to pay the bills, without their offspring being burdened by those bills or the lowered standard of living they will bring, why would they care about America’s future financial condition?
Their voting pattern answers this question very clearly: They do not care.
Why should the kids of those who choose to have children, have increasing levels of Social Security & Medicare & Welfare & Food Stamps taxation on their earnings transferred to people who chose NOT to have kids to help pay those entitlements?
Democrats always talk about “fairness;” how ‘fair’ is this?
For unknown reasons, many parents or hoping-to-be parents in the center of our political spectrum often are voting for people who purposefully are destroying the future of those children merely to improve their lifestyle – or elect-ability – today; people who have neither thought nor care about tomorrow; people who constantly tell us it’s “for the children,” when they don’t have any, and are directly harming, through financial burden, the children of those of us who do care about our future.
Until pundits, OpEd writers, columnists, Republican politicians and any influencers of public opinion grasp that the biggest threat to the future of America is the voting pattern of those not participating in that future, and begin educating parents and young voters who plan to become parents of the stark demographic truth that those demanding generational wealth transfers are refusing to populate the generations that will be paying the bills, NOTHING in the Debt debate will – or can – change.
Many controversial topics exist in which demographics drives voting patterns and policy that are contradictory to our future – it isn’t just entitlements:
- America defends the entire West with our huge defense budgets. Defense is about the future – future freedom and liberty, future self-government. Why is America, the ONLY nation in the West with fertility at 2.1, paying tens of billions of dollars to defend nations that are choosing depopulation? If THEY don’t believe in their own future, WHY are WE defending them FOR that future?
- Think about the insanity of turning over our entire K-12 education system to people holding a worldview that does not include having children. What possible rationale exists to ensure the excellence of that education for the FUTURE of those kids – or our country?
- Obamacare: Why on earth are we allowing our entire health care future to be defined by people who do not believe in that future enough to populate it?
- Democrats live and breathe Malthus and Ludd; they hate and fear the future and resist our progress into our Information Age future at every opportunity (other than electioneering). Obama talks about ATMs and automation driving unemployment. Unions demand Industrial Age policy. Teachers demand information on their performance not be used in their employment – and that they must have permanent job guarantees (tenure), an archaic Industrial Age model that harms our Information Age future, a future about which they DO NOT CARE.
- Why should people who don’t have kids care if children are safe in schools, or if families can defend their children, when the entire issue of child safety is theoretical for them – at best?
Why would voters who are not populating the future, who have no “hostages to the future,” CARE if America remains FREE in that future?
Doesn’t this help explain the decreasing freedom and liberty DEMANDED by the Left?
Until and unless the invalidity of the premise that “it’s all our debt,” truly is understood and explained to the voters, America will continue down this debt path. There simply is no reason for anything to change. The Left DOES NOT CARE ABOUT FUTURE DEBT – THERE IS NO REASON THEY SHOULD.
To expect their voting patterns to show that they care about that future is, truly, existentially stupid.
*This invalid foundation issue also drives the Right’s view that Defense cannot be cut as it will “hollow-out the force.” Why? Why do we need 14 nuclear missile subs to defend against a Soviet Union that no longer exists? Why do we need 10 Carrier Battle Groups to defend our sea lanes (from whom?) and provide occasional tsunami relief? Why do we need 50 attack submarines when any possible enemy navy hasn’t got 50 ships? We could arguably cut DoD by 1/3, increase R&D and be MORE safe… but the Right rests on the un-examined, invalid premise that, just because it’s military funding, it’s somehow sacrosanct. Eisenhower warned us against the “military industrial complex.” He had no idea…