Monday, May 05, 2008

Abortions are down, fertility is up under Bush

Number of abortions per 1,000 women aged 15-44, by year

Two readers (Jim Bowery and SFG) claim that fertility has decreased and abortion increased under the economic hardships of the Bush Administration.

I haven't the smallest desire to defend W. and the rest of the bums, but this is a case of a very plausible theory substituting for hard data. The two charts above ( show that trends have been good, not bad. (It looks like medication abortions are included in the abortion numbers).

These few data points and my last post on abortion provide evidence that economics doesn't determine everything as advocates of Homo economicus would have us believe, nor are values impotent.

(As a side note, increased availability of medication abortions has not led to an increase in abortion, so it might prove to be a "good" thing since it results in earlier abortions. Thirty percent are now done in the first six weeks.)


Anonymous said...

"These few data points and my last post on abortion provide evidence that economics doesn't determine everything as advocates of Homo economicus would have us believe, nor are values impotent."

No, it shows they don't determine everything, there's a world of difference.

Anonymous said...

oops, just saw my mistake, sorry.

Jim Bowery said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
James Bowery said...

My primary position is that this occurred to the -- mainly white middle class -- Boomers during their years of peak fertility. See Decimation of the Baby Boomer Generation and .

My primary concern is not abortion but the dysgenic selection of birth control reducing the population of the most conscientious.

It is true that I see the current economic policies as an extension of the policies contributing to the demographic collapse of the white middle class, but the primary damage to that demographic has been done. I'm don't know what you're seeing here but thanks for the data. Ground truth is always welcome, even if it projects, out of the picture, important dimensions.

Jim Bowery said...

There is a bug in the blogger software's rendering. That isn't what it looked like in the "preview".

Jim Bowery said...

I should probably say a word about Catholics since this is a theme here:

It's true that Catholicism is perhaps the only major Western religion that, by morally restricting birth control, has counter-acted the dysgenic trend of actively decreasing the population's conscientiousness.

The only other belief systems that might do the same are those now classified as the moral equivalent of Satan-worship: Eugenic movements.

Anonymous said...

one word Ron,


SFG said...

All right, I stand corrected.

Jim Bowery said...

OK, Ron, stick this in your data and smoke it:

'The recession may be a factor influencing more Americans to opt out of parenthood with abortions and vasectomies, although there is no data available yet to suggest a trend'

'Even so, there is some anecdotal evidence that would-be parents are factoring the rough economic times into the most personal of reproductive choices, some experts said.'

'In 2005, the last year for which data is available, the U.S. abortion rate fell to the lowest level since 1974, according to the Guttmacher Institute in New York, a nonprofit group focusing on reproductive issues.'

'But at the National Abortion Federation, a hotline for women seeking abortion information has been "ringing off the hook," according to the group's president, Vicki Saporta.'

'"We are currently getting more calls from women who report that they or their partner have recently lost their job, and we are also hearing from more women facing eviction," she said.'