If national baby bonuses send a message and that message gets results,
then municipal contraception funding can send the opposite message and
that message can get results too.
Please read my petitions advocating municipal environmental
contraception funding, which is increasingly politically realistic due
to The Big Sort in more and more towns, and helps women's right's,
quality of life, and school taxes as well as being at least 5 times more
cost-effective than any other environmental effort.
The prochoice and contraception movements are placing too high a priority
on defensive actions in the red states when we should be going on the
offensive, the side of "change", in the blue states, and cities. The
worst places will get even worse no matter what we do, but the unrealized
political potential, the low hanging fruit, is in making the best places
even better. This opportunity is being caused by The Big Sort.
Demographers disagree about whether government-funded initiatives
influence birthrates. However, a 2008 report from the Australian
Productivity Commission found that government handouts - such as the
baby bonus, or family tax benefits that can be awarded up to a child's
teenage years - "had only a very modest effect" on the rise in fertility
rates, the Sydney Morning Herald reported at that time.
The value of the bonus may be more symbolic than financial, since
supporting children to college age could cost hundreds of thousands of
The Baby Bonus "does contribute to the idea that parents feel
supported", Ms Jessica Brown, a policy analyst at the Centre for
Independent Studies, told Weekend Today. "Government payments to
families do not necessarily encourage them to have children in a
financial sense, but contribute to the idea that families are valuable
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