Tuesday, December 03, 2019

Dearth of Babies

There are jobs for anyone who wants to work here in Maine but nearly every small contractor and small business person I hear from tells me they cannot find enough help. It’s true in western Maine and in the Portland area as well. South Portland’s famous Scratch Bakery recently opened a branch facility in a converted gas station down the street from our South Portland home. Called "The Toast Bar," it was packed with customers. Then, suddenly, it closed.

Why? The Portland Press Herald reported last month that the new bakery couldn’t get enough people to work there. Further out in Cape Elizabeth, a recently-built restaurant called the Bird Dog Roadhouse shut its doors for the same reason. My wife and I drove by and noticed the empty parking lot as well as a sign on the door saying:

Due to an acute ongoing staffing shortage, we’ve reluctantly hit the “pause button” here at BDR. We are not closing. We have a beautiful restaurant, a wonderful location, and fantastic guests. Our business is sound. All of our employees and vendors are paid. We are simply pausing restaurant service operations until proper staffing levels can be achieved…

The economy is booming and wages are rising, so what’s going on? Lots of things; for one, people just aren’t having babies like they used to. Last Saturday, Forbes reported CDC data showing fertility rates in the USA at a record low for 2018. Just to keep the population stable, each woman must have 2.1 children in her lifetime. In the US, however, that rate has declined to just over 1.7 and is still going down. It’s the lowest since the 1970s when Roe V Wade was enacted and abortion skyrocketed. Their headline read: “Another Record Low: Will The U.S. Fertility Rate’s Collapse Ever End?

Not unless and until marriage rates increase, according to economist and researcher Lyman Stone. His 2018 research study called: “No Ring, No Baby: How Marriage Trends Impact Fertility” makes a solid case that married women of child-bearing age have by far the most children, but fewer and fewer young women are getting married. He cites several possible reasons including student loan debt, but also that women now are generally more educated than men, making it harder for them to find compatible mates.

The biggest factor, Stone hints, is: “Changing cultural norms and values about sex, family, and religion may have reduced the value of the marriage proposition and tightened the criteria for ‘eligibility’ for marriage.” Is he saying that young people today lack the values of their parents and grandparents? Not explicitly, but he hints strongly at it. Unless you live in a cloistered religious community and never watch television, you'll see the evidence. I’ve written several times on this subject (a sampling here) and I’m not hopeful that the trend will reverse anytime soon.

If I’m right, it would seem that the only way to avoid economic decline would be to increase immigration. It has been increasing, but most of the unskilled, nearly-illiterate, illegal variety, or of “asylum-seeking” Africans, most non-English-speaking, coming over our southern border. Unable to support themselves, they tend to be more of an economic drain than a boost. If we simply returned to pre-1965 immigration policies that required immigrants to be sponsored and ineligible for social services, and then we eliminated chain migration for relatives who were not self-supporting, our country would be much better served.

As it stands now, every 2020 Democrat running for president is pro-abortion. The last pro-life Democrat candidate was Jimmy Carter in 1976. For more than forty years now, preserving Roe V Wade seems to be the most important issue for the Democrat party. Since the Roe V Wade Supreme Court decision in 1973, there have been more than a million abortions every year in the United States. That’s about 50 million Americans who were never born. If they had been allowed to live they would have had at least another 50 million children of their own. Even if Roe V Wade were repealed by Trump-appointed judges, the legality of abortion would simply revert back to the states and not be likely to decline very much.

Although most would deny it, open borders is now the Democrat’s second most important issue. Every 2020 Democrat presidential candidate claims getting rid of President Trump is their biggest goal, but then what have Trump’s priorities been? Appointing conservative (pro-life) judges and stopping illegal immigration are highest on his agenda. That’s what got him elected and if present trends continue, those issues may well propel him into another term.


Brian said...

I'm sure it comes as no surprise that I disagree with many of your opinions, none of which you back up with any sort of fact. Let's take the idea of yours that a society can't function properly unless there are "more" people to help it's economy. Show me any sort of facts to back up the notion that population size is linked to a countries or communities economic well-being. You can not argue that there have been many communities throughout history with small populations that have happily prospered. Take it down a notch and the economy will adjust. This stands in contrast with the only solution that you can see, which is to constantly growing as a population. And then, when does this stop? It obviously has to at some point, because our country can obviously not support an infinite amount of citizens. The benefits of not being over-populated? More open spaces, more resources to go around, more beautiful aspects of nature left unpolluted and ruined.

Also, you claim with no facts or evidence that immigrants are an overall drain on our society. Here is a source giving facts and figures from the likes of the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, the National Academy of Sciences, the U.S. Census Bureau, the The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities and more, that dispute the opinion you seem to have drown from thin air.


Bottom line, immigrants have in fact helped our economy, pre/post 1965 laws or whatever.

You then claim 50 million more children would have been born were it not for legalized abortion. C'mon, do you really believe that the majority of these women wouldn't have gone the "back-alley" route, resulting in not only the loss of the fetuses, but also causing harm to many of the mothers involved?

And the completely dopey talk of "open borders"? Name me who among the many democratic candidates supports that. Such lies are as pathetic as the supposed "War on Christmas" malarkey. Just stop such moronic silliness. The democratic candidates top priorities are helping our country, which obviously means defeating Trump. What have his top priorities been? Obvious, as well....himself, helping himself, soothing his ego, building himself up, and fretting about his place in history. There is NO decision he makes that he doesn't consider himself first.

He will not be re-elected. The moral arc of the universe will not stand for it. I do have faith.

CaptDMO said...

Restaurants offer signing bonuses. Today's Union leader.
Mount Washington valley.
Coffee shop, gas/market shop have had "Hiring" signs in the window for months.
I personally know of other folk not "advertising", but looking.
I'm thinking the problem may lie in "This is what a job (esp. service industry), and earning a pay check,actually entails."

Nick Peace said...

There are problems with a larger population too: more traffic, more expensive housing. Just going to make all those low-wage service workers live further out and their lives more unpleasant.

Jared James Bristol said...

For my good friend, Brian: "The moral arc of the universe"? Seriously? Would that be the unicorn moral arc or the rainbow moral arc?

Brian said...

No, it would be the one famously mentioned by Martin Luther King Jr. :

"We shall overcome because the arc of the moral universe is long but it bends toward justice"

It doesn't surprise me in the slightest that you don't a lot about MLK.

Kafir said...

The concept of reduced birth rates for Western countries started back in 1976 with the UN’s “Vancouver Plan of Action” Conference. Their goal was to not only re-distribute wealth globally but populations as well. Unfortunately, Muslims throughout the world didn’t get the memo.
See: “The Red-Green Axis” pdf by Jim Simpson, pg. 15.

While the birthrate for EU countries are at an unsustainable 1.38 and the U.S. at 1.7, Muslim families are at a whopping 8.1. They will conquer Europe without firing a shot said Muammar Gaddafi. See the Youtube video, “Muslim fertility rates and demographics will make them conquer the world by 2050”.

Brian need not respond.

Brian said...

I agree. Nobody need reply to a Chicken Little all riled up by alarmist videos and panicking about large Muslim families. But since I have, I'll go on to say that I actually might be panicked myself if the world started to fill up with Teddy Bakkers and Pat Robertsons.

Jared James Bristol said...

Oh yes, Brian. Now Kafir is "Chicken Little"? I can't wait for the slaughter if Bakker and Robertson types overpopulate. There'll be stabbings, shootings, beheadings, honor killings and crucifictions all over the place. Knashing of teeth! Children will receive suicide vest training and AK-47 practice at age 4...as in Gaza today! The horrors...gives me the vapors. Everything Kafir states is factual and current. MLK had a dream and he was a wonderful philosopher. But unicorns aren't real, Brian. Sorry.

Kafir said...

Brian, so now I’m unreasonably afraid of Islam and an alarmist? I know you’ve done decades more research on Sharia law and the ProMo than I have, so you must be right. There are lots of famous quotes about fools but this one really pinpoints you: “To wash a donkey’s tail is loss of time and soap.” I’m out of soap.

Brian said...

Poor scared little brain-washed lemmings....

Keep watching your State fed Media and swallowing up their Fake News. But facts are facts, and since 9/11 right-wing terrorists have killed more people on U.S. soil than jihadis. Probably most of those homebred terrorists loved them some Pat and Teddy! And about 9/11, who were these scumbags? Almost all Saudi Arabians. And now....our "president" is kissing the ass of the Saudi royal crown prince. But at the same time playing you for fools....

Yes, Kafir, it is obvious you are out of soap....I can smell your BS from a mile away.

Kafir said...

Brian, One example of “Creeping Sharia” is that Muhammad is now the 10th most popular name for male babies in the U.S. and your buddies at Al Jazeera are peeing in their collective suit-wearing jihadi pants about it. Move along, nothing to see here folks.

You offer nothing but drivel in your responses so See Ya.

Brian said...

If there ever was "nothing to see here", it is the "concern" that babies are being given the name Muhammed.

And isn't it funny that the Saudi Crown prince, who Trump has been praising as doing a Spectacular job and being a friend, is named Muhammed.

Also funny that the only world leaders that Trump claims as friends, and being in love with, are murderous thugs like Muhammed, Kim Jung Un, and his ultimate string holder - Putin.

And we have just seen concrete evidence that the rest of the world's leaders find him to be a complete joke, and mock him and laugh about him amongst themselves.

And I just love seeing you throw up your pathetic little "see ya" white flag. If you can't discuss rationally, give up. Atta boy!

Steve said...

Are you sure about that claim, Kafir, which is actually an Arabic term. Maybe Sharia is creeping on you? Here is a list of the top 100 names in the U.S. https://www.mother.ly/news/the-most-popular-baby-names-of-2018 and Muhammd isn't in there. There are a bunch of Biblical names though.

Kafir said...

Unlike Brian, I do some research before posting, Steve. The article came from the BabyCenter’s list and was also posted on Al Jazeera. The center combined all the variations on the spelling of Muhammad in the U.S. which landed the name at the #10 spot.

“Kafir” means infidel in Arabic, but is used in a very derogatory fashion by Muslims. I have been using the pseudonym for 10 years so I might have some idea about its meaning.

Brian, Trudeau's mocking of Trump means nothing. He is the definition of the term “pajama boy” and is the equivalent of a caucasian Obama. No one should trust the Saudis who are Whabbis.. What happened in Pensacola today is a clear example...except to the PC crowd embedded in our military bureaucracy and the Swamp in DC.

Brian said...

Why you throwing shrapnel my way, Kafir? It wasn't me who doubted your claim about names. I just said it doesn't bother me that kids are named "Muhammad", or "Jesus" or "Charles". Show me your "research" that shows that a man name Muhammad is more likely to be an evil man than a man named Charles. Your usual research seems all full of stuff found through Breitbart sources (Russian led sources?). And you then claim that it is me that doesn't research. Can you give me a fact I gave that can be proven wrong by research?

Spin it as you like, Trump has become a now literal laughing stock of the world. Of our allies! And our enemies? Russia, North Korea, Saudi Arabia? Trump lavishes praise on them all. Undeniable. You say we shouldn't trust the Saudi's....agreed. How do you turn a blind eye to this kissing up to Muhammed and all the shameless ass kissing trump does to people like Putin and Kim Jung Un? It doesn't bother you that he gets along better with them than with his own military, which he has pissed off yet again by not letting them take care of business according to their own US Military ethical code. And it isn't just the military "bureaucracy" that Trump and the right is attacking, it is the many war veterans and heroes who get in their way, who dare speak truth to power. Shameless.

Back to those world leaders laughing at our clown. I think you are putting way too much praise on Trudeau.....He hasn't proved himself to be one of his countries greatest leaders yet, like that "colored" Obama. Are you for real with that "caucasian" thing? How the heck does race enter this? The most obvious answer is....by a racist. Who else would throw that in?

Somehow I'm doubting you can answer these questions, so I'll expect a "See Ya".

Kafir said...

You have too much free time on your hands. Must be the result of the vibrant Trump economy. Ask most military personnel who they respect more, Trump or Obama. The majority of Veterans sure admire him.

Regarding the ProMo, the website thereligionofpeace.com does a comparison of the world’s most famous hippie, Jesus, with the barbaric warrior prophet, Muhammad. The nonsense that Mo wasn’t evil is a sure sign of your ignorance about Islam. He was Atilla the Hun with
religious trappings he fabricated with Allah as his alter ego.. Quran 33:23 states he was the perfect man to emulate which is why Sharia-adherent Muslims are so violent.

Try to sell your “all religions are equal” 💩 to someone else. What “race” is Islam by the way?

Brian said...

You are posting as much as me, so why throw that stone about "free time"? But thanks Obama for getting a destroyed economy off the ground and into the upward spiral we are still seeing the effects of today. One reason that it will be good if Trump wins re-election is that it will be him and him alone that has to take all the blame for the whole thing falling apart with his mis-management.

I never said one way or the other if that particular Muhammed was evil. I said show me research saying that nowadays somebody named Muhammed is more likely to be evil than someone named Fred or Charlie or whatever. You didn't do it.

I also was not trying to sell that “all religions are equal” . Some, like Buddhism, seem far less apt for it's followers to do murderous and violent acts than say those of Islam or Christianity. I'm glad you agree thought that Jesus was a hippie. If he were around today we all know which side of the political spectrum hippies lean. I think he was a great man, far greater in my mind than Muhammed.

And I am beginning to question your comprehension skills. I clearly did not say anything about Islam being a race. I said that I could not see a reason for you to comment on the races of Trudeau and Obama. Besides racism. Can you explain it any other way?

Another questions you dodged: How do you turn a blind eye to this kissing up to Muhammed and all the shameless ass kissing trump does to people like Putin and Kim Jung Un? He is getting played like a fiddle by all of them. They are laughing even louder than the leaders of our allies.

Steve said...

Of course the Democratic candidates prioritize defeating Trump in 2020. Why else would they run? Do you think the Republican candidates in 2012 were indifferent about defeating Obama? Merely relentlessly repeating that the Democrats want open borders doesn’t make it so. You have to make some effort to support it with something, even an inforwars article. Just link something. It reminds me of the relentless claim every time a jobs report came out during Obama’s presidency that the numbers were either an outright lie or that they were manipulated in some way. That a five, six or seven percent unemployment was false and that the real unemployment figure was closer to 30 or 35 percent. I just don’t remember nearly one in three Americans being unemployed. The moment Trump took office, suddenly there was no more talk about phony jobs numbers. So either Trump added tens of millions of jobs within the first few months of his term, or eight years of conservative media reporting were wrong.
Are you sure immigration is one of his priorities? His signature initiative was the border wall, and he rejected at least two deals that would’ve funded it. In 2018, Democrats offered 25b for the wall in exchange for a pathway to citizenship for dreamers (DACA). Trump rejected it. A month later, a bipartisan Senate bill was presented to Trump for the same 25b and a ten to twelve-year timeline to citizenship for about 1.8 million young immigrants. It also sought to bar them from sponsoring their parents for citizenship. Trump initially supported it, then rejected it saying it didn’t do enough to stem the flow of immigrants.

Kafir said...

Do you really think a UPenn Wharton School of Business grad, a mega real estate developer and successful TV show host doesn’t understand how to negotiate?

Did you review the ProMo’s bio compared to Christ at thereligionofpeace.com to see how evil he was? It doesn’t take much effort. We also have what’s called the internet and Google nowadays.

Steve said...

According to a lot of conservatives, an Ivy league education is a credential not worth bragging about. Aren’t they all cloistered snowflakes or dandies or whatever the insult du jour is? Trump was offered 25b and rejected it twice. Now he’s siphoning 3.6b (85% less) from military projects to finance his wall. Do you think Trump negotiated a better deal?

Steve said...

The intent of my post wasn't to challenge Trump's business acumen, although, you have to wonder how does one loose money owning a casino. The house always wins. I was questioning just how much of a priority is the border wall to him?

Brian said...

It's clear that Trump doesn't care so much about a border wall (remember when he talked about it going through Colorado!) as he does about having an issue that will keep his foreigner-fearing base in a frenzy. Bid Daddy Donald will keep his frightened sheep protected!

Kafir, why are you so obsessively repeating this "Muhammed was evil" mantra? Who are you arguing with? Not only has no one here defended Muhammed, I went as far to say how much greater I thought Jesus was.

Do i think Trump is a good negotiator just because he was raised as a pampered child who used connections to get into Whartons, and refuses to release either his SAT scores or his grades at Whartons, ashamed of them as he is with his taxes? He flat-out lied about graduating at the top of his class (he always has to be the best.....there is no greater example of a compulsive liar in history). This makes him a good negotiator? Or was it his daddy funded business empire or his 6 bankruptcies that make him good? No, he is a good bully, something that paid off on occasion in the world of mobs and city real estate, but he can't negotiate for crap. He's a clownish toddler on the world stage being played for the fool he is.

He was a successful TV show host? Ooh, then he must be able to handle Putin! Any of the Kardishians could use this same "qualification" and make a better president. The Kardashian - Honey Boo Boo world is where he belonged.

Steve said...

Has Trump identified radical Islam yet as it relates to the Pensacola terrorist attack? I haven’t seen that yet. For eight years we were alerted to the existential danger every time Obama failed to identify radical Islam. Does the same warning apply to Trump? Weirdly enough, Trump is acting more like a Saudi press secretary, reassuring us that the Saudi’s are “devastated” and offer their “sincere condolences.” “This person in no way, shape or form represents the feelings of the Saudi people who love the American people.” We’re occasionally reminded of the pain and betrayal we still feel from Obama’s US apology tour 11 years ago. How should we feel about Trump’s Saudi apology tour?

Steve said...

Mr. McLaughlin, I’d really like you to comment on this if you have time. I feel like your credibility as an objective political observer is in question. For Obama’s eight years in office, you and many conservative opinionists took every opportunity to point out when he failed to mention radical Islam as the cause for a terrorist attack. I inferred from a lot of what you wrote that it was because perhaps he was a secret Muslim, or at least maintained a deep affinity for the religion from his youth. But here we have Trump refusing to identify radical Islam and even going as far as apologizing for the Saudi kingdom and its people. In 2015 when speaking to a crowd in Alabama, Trump said, “Saudi Arabia, I get along with all of them. They buy apartments from me. They spend 40 million, 50 million. Am I supposed to dislike them? I like them very much.” Could he be acquiescing to this fundamental Wahabi nation steeped in sharia law so as not to jeopardize profits for his business?
Democrats commit infraction A – failing to identify radical Islam in the wake of a terrorist attack – and you call them out. Republicans commit the same infraction, and you don’t call them out. That makes it look like you never really cared when the Democrats committed infraction A, and you were only critical of them for the purpose of animating your readership. But it’s a trickle-down effect. The opinionsts you rely on criticized the Democrats for infraction A but not the Republicans, and they did so for the sole purpose of animating you.

Brian said...

Odds are there will be no response coming from Tom. His way is to spew out his opinions and hide from any opposing viewpoints. I have confronted Mr. McLaughlin many times over the years over outrageous displays of hypocrisy with no defense ever given. Occasional excuses, maybe a deflection, but usually just a silent retreat to the safety of his bubble, ala Kafir.

Let’s look back on some of that hypocrisy!

The amount of time Obama spent golfing riled up Trump, Fox News, and all their minions, but suddenly they are so unconcerned about Trump golfing more than twice as much.

The “power grabbing” executive orders? Suddenly OK when done by Trump.

Imagine if Obama publicly stated that he trusted the foreign intelligence of an enemy nation over that of the USA? And chummed around with enemy leaders, professing his love and respect for them while insulting and being ridiculed by our allies.

Remember when conservatives used to pretend to care about “Family Values”? Imagine the outrage that a liberal president acting in the moral manner of Trump would invoke!!

How people can not stand behind their words is beyond me. If I had no backbone and had to hide because I couldn’t defend my statements I would be eaten up by shame. Which perhaps Tom is, but he’ll stay hidden before admitting it. Very much the Trump style.