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Wednesday, January 11, 2006


The Economics of Abortion

With all the talk about Roe v. Wade being overturned by a Roberts/Alito court I think it is easy to loose sight of the fact that the number of abortion performed in this country is a function of economics.

When the economy is expansive, as it was during Clinton's administration, unplanned pregnancies go down as young people are offered employment and reap the material benefits of our capitalists system. When the economy runs out of gas, and job growth stagnates, as it has under Bush, unplanned pregnancies and abortions go up.

So all this talk about Roe vs. Wade is kind of a side show. If you are "pro-life" and want fewer abortions, simply vote democratic and for economic policies that support broad based job growth, not the wealth hoarding policies of the republicans.

I agree with your viewpoint on principle, but have you found any numbers to back it up?

Even the NRLC-reported statistics end in 1995. They show abortions rising and peaking under Reagan and Bush I, then declining under Clinton and continuing to decline. Nothing after 1995 except some dodgy guesses from NRLC.

The Reagan boom was brief and brought no lasting prosperity to the working class and poor. But the Clinton boom was long and broadly based, bringing new wealth and homeownership to the working and poor.

Simply on a biological level, all creatures tend to reproduce more successfully in times of plenty, and suppress their reproduction in times of scarcity.
Jason? Backing up his bloviations with actual fact? You ask for too much.
I agree Jason there is definitely an economic factor working here. It's the same economic factor that has been operating in the Catholic Church for centuries and is now the policy of the Republican Party. Women are chatel. Women must breed just like cows, horses, chickens, whatever. Women must bring forth children so there will be plenty of soldiers to fight wars and plenty of peasants to do the actual work of society. It's nothing new.
Backing my bloviations with actual fact:

During the 1990s, as unemployment steadily decreased and average real income rose, the annual number of abortions in the U.S. actually decreased by 300,O00--from 1,610,000 to 1,310,000 per year. But in 2002, the first full year of the Bush presidency, abortions increased in the 16 states for which I could find data by a total of 5,855. If the data from the rest of the nation fit that pattern, abortions increased nationwide in 2002 by about 24,000 a year, reversing the dramatic decreases of the 1990s., And many more articles like this if you care to google "abortion" and "economy".

Thank you for asking.

If you are "pro-life" vote for the democrat.
Republicans better watch out for Catholics. Catholics have jumped into bed with fundies over the abortion issue, but don't forget Catholics are supposedly opposed to war and the death penalty. GWB bitch-slapped Pope John Paul II repeatedly on the death penalty and the Iraq war.
Simply on a biological level, all creatures tend to reproduce more successfully in times of plenty, and suppress their reproduction in times of scarcity.

This does not hold up for the human animal. Unless survival is significantly challenged, reproduction goes up in times of relative scarcity.
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