Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Decrease of Two Parent Households

Laurie posted this excellent article. WM Why is Marriage Thriving?  It has some great information and some absolutely stupid comments...
"It’s also seemingly only Americans with four-year degrees or better who appear immune to the broader cultural and social forces eroding marriage. In 1950, white women with “some college,” such as an associate’s degree, were actually more likely to be married than their better-educated sisters. Today, it’s the opposite. Though women with a high school diploma or less have seen the sharpest drop in marriage rates, the decline has been almost as severe—and ongoing—for women just one short rung down the education ladder, regardless of race."  (no duh... see below...)

"One reason the marriage behavior of elites has been so puzzling is that it defies the popular explanation for marriage’s decline." (really...)

"College graduates, wrote Reeves in the Atlantic, “are reinventing marriage as a child-rearing machine for a post-feminist society and a knowledge economy.” It’s the ultimate in helicopter parenting." (really...)
Let's think about my list of what causes people to be poor:
  1. single parent w/ 1+ children (often too young)
  2. divorced and supporting 2 households
  3. more children than they can afford
  4. no high school degree or GED
  5. particular about job / gets themselves fired
  6. unwilling to work 40 or more hours per week
  7. poor spending choices / credit card debt
  8. living above their means
  9. addicted to drugs, alcohol, gambling, etc
  10. health problems
Let's think about what it takes to get a degree, get married, delay child bearing, avoid addiction and stay married:
  1. willingness to delay immediate gratification to pursue a long term goal
  2. ability to work with and put up with people who are difficult at times
  3. willingness to at times put the wants of others before one's own
  4. ability to stick to a commitment or pledge
  5. an interest in academic and other learning
And these folks are wondering why college educated women stay married and succeed more often?

This lady is probably surprised actively practicing religious folks are more likely to stay married...



John said...

Sean, Thank you for moderating me...

John said...

It was actually "Reeves" who annoyed me...
"It’s the ultimate in helicopter parenting."

The idea that marrying and staying married because of a vow and the children must be too old fashion for them.

Laurie said...

ultimate in helicopter parenting in this case may not be a bad thing

Anonymous said...

Donald Trump went broke once when people lost interest in gambling in Atlantic City. People become poor for lots of reasons.


John said...

Laurie, Maybe.

Hiram, He lost money on a deal, he did not go broke. I often lose money on some investments... The good news is that others earn more...

Anonymous said...

Let's think about my list of what causes people to be poor

There is a kind of fallacy known as "Post hoc ergo propter hoc" which means after this because of this. In my view, it's one of the more useful fallacies, one that we apply often in daily life. It's advantage is that it allows us to draw conclusions in situations where we find it very difficult to prove causation. It's why cigarette packages have warning labels.

When thinking about the causes of poverty, it's important, I believe, to keep in mind both the usefulness and the dangers of relying on logical fallacies. Or on know with absolute certitude, which comes first, the egg, or the chicken.


John said...

Fascinating... Now how do you think it applies to this topic?

Anonymous said...

It's very easy to list a number of factors relative to poverty. But we don't really know if any of them cause poverty, or for that matter poverty causes any of them.


John said...

It is a point... What causes Items 1 - 10?

My argument is that an object at rest stays at rest, unless acted on by an outside force... And that items 1 - 10 can not be fixed by just writing people a check. As has been shown by a multitude of lottery winners who are now broke again. To break the cycle, somehow one needs to break the beliefs and actions that propagate those behaviors, beliefs, habits, actions, etc.

As I wrote on MP:

"My Out of the Box thinking is usually considered too extreme.

Ultimately the babies, kids, teens need to be raised in a good home with qualified mature people to love, educate and provide positive role modeling. People who believe that the child can be successful no matter their income level or skin color. People who are willing to be a firm, consistent, helpful, loving, etc Parent/Coach and really work at it..

So like driving a car, if you want to have a child you had better be able to pass "the test" and afford "the costs".(ie insurance) And if you violate the rules of Parenting you will loose that privilege nearly immediately because that child's needs are much more important than that adult's wants.

By the way, my Conservative readers freak out when I say that the Teachers would get to grade the Parents.... And the Liberal readers freak out at the idea that I consider being a Parent to be a privilege and not a right. I find both amusing because being a good Parent is one of the hardest things I have ever done and it is also one of the most important.

Definitely more so than driving..." G2A

John said...

By the way, I am pretty sure that we know that factors 1 - 10 cause much of the poverty in our country. Your question seems to be does being low income doom a person to one of those paths?

Anonymous said...

My argument is that an object at rest stays at rest

do the laws of physics apply to things which have no mass? Like ideas? Do ideas curve around the sun?


John said...

With that in mind...

Does being low income cause one to:
- become a single Parent
- get divorced
- fail in school
- fail in jobs
- get addicted
- etc

My guess is no.

Not to say that being low income is not harder, however it certainly is not a root cause. I think that comes back to Parents...

John said...

From Jerry.

- well educated and higher income people are following the traditional path - education jobs marriage children. It is lower income women who are becoming single mothers at a higher rate. we have covered this before. "

Laurie once again raises the chicken or egg question. Do people fail to follow the traditional path because they are poor, or are they poor because they failed to follow the traditional path? I think it is reasonably clear that both are true. It goes back to the War on Poverty, when it became necessary for poor (and unfortunately predominantly black) families to split up in order to qualify for welfare payments. About the same time, public schools became far less effective at teaching the attitudes and knowledge necessary to escape poverty. The result is a "welfare culture"or "entitlement mentality" by which too many no longer even recognize the traditional path as desirable or beneficial. Until government changes its approach, the War on Poverty will be lost, with millions of innocent civilians as casualties."

"In too many cases, if our Government had set out determined to destroy the family, it couldn't have done greater damage than some of what we see today."
--Daniel Patrick Moynihan

Anonymous said...

I think that comes back to Parents...

So it was mom and dad caused me to have a child out of wedlock, ruined my marriage, made me fail in school, cause me to have problems at work, and are responsible for my addiction to my iPhone?

What could they have been thinking of?


John said...

Unfortunately I don't believe they were thinking or aware of the long term consequences of their role modeling and training.

I still remember when we first had babies in the house and everyone was telling us the important things about Parenting, whether they had studied the topic or not. It was especially ironic since the Mrs has 2 degrees in Early Childhood education. And had years of experience with toddlers and pre-K even at that time.

Now I agree that bad things can happen in excellent families with excellent Parents. Genetics, environment and peers are factors, however my belief is that 2 capable responsible dedicated Parents are a key deciding factor in a child's long term success.

John said...

An interesting Research Paper

Laurie said...

Here is the link I believe I posted the last time this topic came up:

The Decline of Marriage and the Rise of Unwed Mothers: An Economic Mystery

Falling wages for men with less education is one of the main reasons for the decline in marriage rates.

John said...

Though there is some interesting information in there, I think many of the conclusions are odd at best. Like these:

"This is a complex economic mystery that we've explored often at The Atlantic, but we can take a big bite out of it by focusing on three factors: (1) The changing meaning of marriage in America; (2) declining wages for low-skill men; and (3) the declining costs of being a single person."

"Think of marriage like any other contract or investment. It's most likely to happen when the gains are big. So we should expect marriages among low-income Americans to decline if women perceive declining gains from hitching themselves to the men around them."

I mean we know that being a single Mother leads to financial ruin in many cases, so what young woman in their mature right mind would choose this path because her potential husband will make about what she is making.

I do agree that welfare, medicaid and other child care funding did cause this "(3) the declining costs of being a single person". This what jerry and I have been saying for years. It is odd that the author did not even note this HUGE societal change...

And I don't believe the author is a Parent if he thinks the following are the challenges / costs of being a Single Parent...

"The development of time-saving technologies -- cheap prepared foods, cheap clothes, machines to wash, dry, and vacuum -- has not only encouraged more women to seek work, but also made it relatively easier for single parents to raise a child. Put starkly, technology makes it cheaper and easier than ever to be single. It makes marrying a financially unstable man even more risky."

Yes it was amusing, but I don't think it was very practical.

John said...

One more thought... I don't think most of the 18 to 24 yr old no HS degree or just squeaked through HS women I have met are up to doing a cost benefit analysis of marrying a man... I think looks, romance, alcohol, love and factors 1 - 10 are more important.

John said...

Along those lines... Brookings Article

"The result: fully 60 percent of all births to unmarried women under the age of 30 are unplanned, and close to half of their kids will grow up in poverty."

Laurie said...

from Kevin Drum on the topic:

Marriage Is Declining Because Men Are Pigs

I mostly agree with him.