October 27, 2010

There's the "M" Word Again

Justin Katz

Jennifer Marshall approaches a point frequently made on Anchor Rising from another direction:

Waiting until marriage to have children is the second of three "golden rules" for avoiding poverty that researchers identified over the years: (1) graduate from high school; (2) marry before having children; and (3) get a job.

Actually, being married is even more significant than graduating from high school for avoiding poverty. Robert Rector, a senior research fellow at The Heritage Foundation, shows this in a new paper, "Marriage: America's No. 1 Weapon Against Child Poverty." By contrast, typical responses to poverty call for more spending on government programs. Far from helping poor Americans escape dependency, however, massive increases in welfare spending over the past four decades have entrenched poverty across generations.

Marriage and childbirth must be inextricably linked, conceptually, to foster a society in which (1) having to get married feels like a real potential consequence of the behavior that leads to childbirth and (2) children are born into households in which their parents have formed a partnership for their emotional and economic well-being. For the subsequent generation, having close familial relationships with both male and female parents — creating direct lines of lineage along a family tree — will decrease the behavior that leads branches into dire circumstances.

Comments, although monitored, are not necessarily representative of the views Anchor Rising's contributors or approved by them. We reserve the right to delete or modify comments for any reason.

It's funny that this piece on marriage appears in a Salt Lake City newspaper where folks have slightly different ideas about marriage. The writer here is from the Heritage Foundation the notorious right wing think tank. The researchers quoted in the piece are from either the Heritage Foundation or the equally right of center Manhattan Institute. Justin are you comfortable relying on only one point of view when you are trying to inform yourself?

Posted by: Phil at October 27, 2010 8:47 AM

Are you seriously going to suggest that not being married is a better option? And, if a murderer said 2+2=4, does it make it wrong?
Why can't people just use common sense?
The fact of the matter is, getting married before having children, produces far better results than otherwise. Nobody is saying it is better in every case, or doing otherwise cannot produce healthy nurturing successful relationships.
We are talking odds here - better vs. worse.
What is it that makes liberals defend and support the long shot option? It is just this trait that has created the dependency culture that is taking this country down.

Posted by: Mike Cappelli at October 27, 2010 9:15 AM

It's funny, reading Phil's critique of Justin's sources for this article, since Phil gets all his opinions from notorious far-left propaganda outlets.

Typical Leftist tactic: if you can't refute the facts, attack the source.

You're not fooling anyone here.

Posted by: BobN at October 27, 2010 10:01 AM


I asked Justin about the sources of information he uses.
Getting as much information as possible may not change your original position but it may inform you about other points of view. I'll agree with you that children face better odds with two parents instead of one.

Posted by: Phil at October 27, 2010 10:05 AM


I read all the material that Justin uses except for the subscribtion only stuff. So you are wrong.

Posted by: Phil at October 27, 2010 10:12 AM

Let's look at the statistics, shall we, then formulate an opinion on childbirth and marriage. Hmm, children born into a single parent household are more likely to live in poverty. How do we know this? Well, those children and their single mothers need government assistance, that's how.

Now, let's use some common sense here. What if those parents are single parents by design, and purposely have children as single parents so that they can get government assistance, and continue to get more for every single child they have.

Or, they can get married, and lose all of their benefits, the fathers will have to support the family instead of buying cars and sneakers, the economy will suffer and the Republicans will take over.

Yet people continue to look at these statistics and actually believe that some sense can be made from all of the nonsense.

Posted by: michael at October 27, 2010 10:22 AM

"Are you seriously going to suggest that not being married is a better option?"

If one person has a decent job and 'sublets' the living space to the other unemployed or underemployed partner, who can then collect WIC, food stamps, heating assistance, etc., then Yes. They get a 'stay at home parent' -and- a middle class lifestyle without having to juggle three jobs between them.

This is happening a lot, the young folks are figuring out how to work around the rules. Given that half of them have been through the divorce of their parents, jobs switch every few years, and a certain comfort with the idea of financial dependence fostered by baby-boomer parents, they see the world a little differently.

Posted by: mangeek at October 27, 2010 10:25 AM

Your posture was one of simply attempting to discredit the argument based upon the source, when in fact, no source, other than mere common sense is necessary.

Posted by: Mike Cappelli at October 27, 2010 10:37 AM

All the more reason why we need to gut these programs.

Posted by: Mike Cappelli at October 27, 2010 10:40 AM

"All the more reason why we need to gut these programs."

I'm not sure that's wise, and I'll tell you why.

People -do- depend on these programs, probably the majority of users. If we 'gut' the programs, we'll likely just be shooting ourselves in the foot as we'll have to deal with starving, freezing, and agitated masses. I've said it before, but if we cut heating assistance too much, people will be breaking into our homes while we're at work just to sleep on our couches. They'll be stealing our stuff to buy food. They'll be going to the emergency room (via the Mike Morse Express) for hunger and hypothermia.

That's why I like Ken Block's 'data-mining' ideas... If you can load everyone's address into a database and determine -who are the people pulling the scam I outlined-, then bump them off the programs and back into productive positions, we'll all be able to sleep easy.

If you weed out the scammers, and cut the benefits down properly for folks who earn more than others, you can build a path out of dependence. If you limit the number of children you're going to pile-on benefits for (maybe to one or two, going forward, instead of five), you'll eventually get the fiscal benefits of 'gutting' the system without the guilt of just slashing their budgets and letting people fend for themselves.

There is a tremendous number of folks out there who have a few rough months at a time and consume one or more service from the social safety-net, I wouldn't want to keep that from happening.

Posted by: mangeek at October 27, 2010 12:21 PM

If I ever told you my background in helping people, it would blow you away.
I actually have no problem HELPING people. What I have no patience for is being taken advantage of. And, everybody that scams the system, is robbing from our ability to help those truly in need.
The sad thing about our present system is that it actually provides incentives to scammers. Because of stupid liberal policies, we are unable to put into place systems that would weed out the scammers.
I'll use as an example our laughingstock of a Homeland Security charade at the airport. Because the liberals say you can't profile, we now have in place one of the most assinine systems I've ever witnessed. To placate the stupid liberals, we make old ladies take off their shoes. They can't even reach their shoes for crying out loud! Let them hide a weapon there - they can't f'n reach it anyway. Or seeing elderly men who've served our country in World War II being subjected to the crap that these liberals are responsible for.
Look at El Al Airlines, the Israeli airline. Not once in 40 years have they had an incident. And they don't subject their customers to the BS this gov't does. Anybody care to guess why?? They profile! It works.
Now, will a few people be offended and unfairly targeted? Absolutely. But, isn't that better than targeting everybody and offending everybody??
Course, liberals can't make any sense out of this. Which is why I always call them stupid. That's what they are. And that's exactly the reason any program run by the government is a huge waste - stupid liberal policies allowed to take dictate things.
You want to fix our problems - eradicate the stupid liberal policies.

All I hear from you Mangeek and michael are reasons it can't be done. It can be done.

Posted by: Mike Cappelli at October 27, 2010 1:55 PM

Did I ever say it can't be done?

Posted by: michael at October 27, 2010 2:14 PM

"All I hear from you Mangeek and michael are reasons it can't be done."

I think I actually explained how to do it. 'Gutting' the programs (and by that, I imagine you mean just eliminating their budgets) would be disastrous, even to those of us who don't make use of them.

Gutting the General Assembly would be the place to start if you want any sort of reform, though. I think we can all stand by that idea.

Posted by: mangeek at October 27, 2010 2:43 PM

Politically correct turds insinuated into the law enforcement/national security system is our problem.
Mike Cappelli is 100% correct.Not unusual for him.
If someone gives off a bad vibe,then you put that individual through the wringer.A good way to think.It worked for me.

Posted by: joe bernstein at October 27, 2010 3:38 PM

Just this morning, I was reading the "Dr. Lovemonkey" advice column in the current Providence Phoenix "the newspaper so good that they have to give it away". Probably not the best news source.

A seeker of advice wrote in to say that she was unwed and pregnant. She was critical of her mother who had offered condolences. Dr. Lovemonkey suggested that her mother should "get with it", that times had changed.

I once had a girlfriend (please no jokes about the number) who was disturbed by criticism of "single mothers". This because she was raised by her mother after her "married father" died. She refused to understand that it was "unwed mothers" that were being criticized. Perhaps we should more frequently make that distinction.

Posted by: Warrington Faust at October 27, 2010 4:02 PM
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