Starting with the most important, a town has a large motive to fund
contraception for the surrounding county or area because families with children
in the surrounding county might move into the town and use vastly more expensive
municipal child services, possibly including schools. Preventing just that
possibility is worth the contraception in most cases. This is partly the
same motivation the USA has for putting billions into third world contraception
(mostly in the 1970s), not nearly enough billions, but billions
nonetheless. A county has the same motive to fund contraception to state
residents, and a state to national residents. Just the possibility of
a family with children moving in and enrolling in school is still vastly more
expensive than the contraception. Where retirement towns get pensions
mailed in by the feds. Furthermore, as long as the contraception is
physically provided in the town, the recipients are likely enough to combine
trips and shop there that much of the cost of the contraception can be recouped
in taxed economic activity.
Secondly, San Francisco is it's
own county and New York City contains 5 counties, also known as boroughs. Are
you sure St. Louis is not it's own county like San Francisco? It's a tangent
Thirdly, and I already stressed
this, education is orders of magnitude more expensive than contraception.
Contraception is cost-effective enough to be supplied even to outsiders by small
towns, where education doesn't even come close. Educating the world is an
impossible budget buster in a way that supplying contraception to the world
Also, no matter what the stats
say, it would be racist to claim overpopulation is the exclusive problem of
foreigners or people of color, when the world clearly contains far too many
affluent white people. This means the problem is HERE, not somewhere far
away, and a problem that is HERE, can and should be addressed by local
government. It is US who are overpopulated, not just somebody else, not
just "them", regardless of how you care to visualize or define "us" and "them",
with the possible exception of us childless people.
I'm getting to see this on a microcosm.
I currently live in a small
city. Like in most places, the middle-class and wealthy have few children -
they've had to close/combine several schools in the wealthier parts of town.
Meanwhile, the lower classes, many of whom rely on some sort of government aid
are having children left and right. Mostly, this is out of wedlock. And, they
get additional government aid, child support, other benefits - and much of that
goes up in drugs and beer - leading to an even worse outlook for subsequent
For several reasons, we're leaving this area for another state.
We've bought a home in a tiny little town - population 140, average age 48 - in
another state on the Great Plains. I'm seeing a microcosm in that town of what
would or could happen with a very low birthrate.
They've had one birth
this year. They had none in 2009. and two in 2008. The school in the town has
been closed for many years, since they consolidated the district with the one in
the county seat. I don't think that particular municipality would have the same
inclination that a city such as Los Angeles would to fund contraception. There
are ranchers and farmers in the surrounding area, but they do not pay municipal
towns. Why should the people in the town pay for birth control for people who do
not live there, and when they do not need it themselves. Also, the average
farmer in the US is now 52 - they are not having many children either.
can say one thing positive about that. I know for a fact that that baby of 2010
is not abused, nor will he ever be so long as he lives there. Everyone in town
knows what everyone else is doing, and it would be stopped in short order. That
would happen anywhere when babies are RARE. They are precious when rare. When
babies/children are extremely common - and people have more than they can handle
or afford, they are unwanted and CHEAP. No one cares, really.
will have plenty of foster "grandparents" who will tell him all sorts of things
about their lives, and be willing, able, and even eager to teach him what
they/we know. It is well known that children develop more when the average age
in their family and community is higher - the worst is when you've got
12-year-old parents raising children, perhaps with the help of 22-year-old
grandparents. Of course, not having children until someone is older lowers the
birth rate - it's not just the number of children someone has, but the length of
time between generations. Or, children whose primary environment is a day care
center, filled with other infants and toddlers, staffed by an uneducated, often
immigrant worker - who changes frequently. The average age in such a center is
extremely low. Toddlers do not teach one another well.
I can see putting
the birth control funding along school district lines. But, it would have to be
funded in reverse: School districts in impoverished areas tend to have high
birthrates, whereas those in affluent districts tend to have low
The reason for this is simple: Education. More education is
the single factor that leads to a lower birthrate, and a higher average age of
parenthood. Poor teenaged girls have to be convinced that they CAN do something
in their lives that is more useful than becoming a "Mommy of 5" by the time
she's 20. Poor teenaged boys have to find something by which to judge their
worth than how many babies they've fathered. Being the smartest in math,
science, language - or being a "computer genius". Being skilled at a trade such
as carpentry or plumbing or tree trimming would be far more worthwhile than
producing more children. These kids just need to be directed into finding
knowledge and skills that are worthwhile.
Back to the little prairie
town, this town belies the notion that having children will guaranty one of
having someone to care for them in their old age. Most of the elderly people in
the town have had children - and they've moved to cities and become absorbed in
their lives there and do not care for them - perhaps visit once every 5 years.
That's similar across the US and most of the first world. It's difficult to tell
the childless/childfree from the aging parents in terms of support. Neighbors
care for neighbors. If more specialized help is required, people will commute or
relocate from surrounding areas to take homecare jobs - it is, after all, a
matter of getting to work, just like any other job. Adult children very rarely
"wipe their parents' bums". A few eventually leave to go to nursing homes during
their last months or weeks of life - not years or decades.
other older people working in capacities such as waitresses, librarian, store
clerks, utility workers, and even mayor. Being 65 does not mean that someone is
decrepit and must stop working. It's a much higher quality of life than someone
in a city with city-dwelling-career-oriented children that put them in a nursing
home or even retirement home. People who work longer are less likely to die with
some lingering, debilitating condition. It's much easier, painless, and cheaper
to die of a heart attack than with a set of conditions including Alzheimers or
other dementia. Plus, an 75-year-old is already educated and does not need years
of schooling before they are capable of working.
On a larger scale, this
would work the same way. People would continue working on needed jobs longer.
Make-work jobs would cease to exist. People would stay brighter and more alert
longer - working does that to someone. The healthcare workers would be no
exception, and where needed, people would come in from other areas - from other
cities, or international immigrants. The education that's already been paid for
would be used for longer - more "bang for the buck" with it.
would become boat-anchors, or be turned into something such as a Bed and
Breakfast or a small factory. I know "old" schools that have been recycled into
BTW, everyone in the US does not live in a county. The City of
St. Louis, for one, is not in any county.
I was a card carrying member of
the Libertarian party for a number of years. They have a number of good ideas -
and the "LOCAL" one is one of those. Different localities have different needs
and different concerns.
I think you and I agree in principle:
Contraception is very important or vital to humanity. Local programs are more
effective and easier to implement than State or national ones. International
ones may even be impossible to implement. Our only difference is that you've got
an urban outlook whereas I have a rural outlook on demographics. Both are
required to make this work on a larger scale. Having more children is no longer
an asset - it's a liability. The reverse was true 100 years ago, when they were
put to work in factories or on family farms. Now, there are few family farms,
but many large or corporate farms, which hire workers, who have to be older to
legally work, there are few jobs that children could do, plus it's illegal to
Another difference in contraception is what the children
already know: Rural children know how conception and birth take place. They've
seen it in farm animals, and they can understand about breeding a certain female
animal with sperm from a male animal with good genes to get better offspring.
Urban children MAY know something of this with their pets, but for the most part
the realities of sex are kept from them, and animals and women are carted off to
hospitals (human or veterinary) when having their young. It's a lot easier to
teach contraception when one is starting from a basic understanding of how
conception takes place. Most likely, different programs are needed.
biggest growth of population though is in the third world. It will be difficult
to get contraceptives used widely in some of those areas. It needs to be done
though, but I don't know the way to do it. I know education - both general
education for all adults, and education on the use of contraceptives, and
teaching the populace that more children is not "better". Also, raising the
status of women, so that they CAN make something more of themselves which is
more useful than "Mommy of 7".
--- In Why_breed@yahoogroups.com
> Contraception costs are mostly per capita,
and the smallest towns
> have as much money per capita as the biggest
cities. So size doesn't
> matter. Also, everyone in the US lives in a
county, and I'm not
> excluding county government at all, far from it. In
fact if school
> districts are the same as counties, as they are here,
then counties have
> the most to save in school taxes. However one will
find that a higher
> percentage of urban people than rural people are
> environmental contraception, and that difference is
growing by The Big
> Sort, so most of the places with real political hope
> PS in fact I
set the petition to send E-mails to one particular
> municipality, the one
I guessed has the most political potential, and
> that is Santa Cruz CA,
which is a small city with a big college. I
> remain open to suggestions
as to which US locality(s) has the highest
> percentage of overpopulation
activists, which is not at all the same as
> having the most.
these links for more on minority political strategies developed by
Libertarian Party, but applicable to all political minorities,
The Big Sort means we can win locally what we can't win federally, and
> damn hard to win in most states.