The Right Coast

Editor: Thomas A. Smith
University of San Diego
School of Law

A Member of the Law Professor Blogs Network

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

I basically agree with Ross Douthat here

The retreat from child rearing is, at some level, a symptom of late-modern exhaustion — a decadence that first arose in the West but now haunts rich societies around the globe. It’s a spirit that privileges the present over the future, chooses stagnation over innovation, prefers what already exists over what might be. It embraces the comforts and pleasures of modernity, while shrugging off the basic sacrifices that built our civilization in the first place.

His link is here, and I willingly admit that I am in some ways part of the problem.


Arguments that it's not the end of the world welcomed. --TS

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The Romans did it too and the world didn't end. Why, in only a millenium and a half Britannia got central heating back.

Posted by: dearieme | Dec 4, 2012 9:36:58 PM

End of the world? No (unless we get really crazy and blanket the globe with nukes or some such thing).

Slide into a "Dark Ages" interlude? A fair chance of it.

Posted by: titan | Dec 5, 2012 6:42:30 AM

Ross Douthat fails to consider the declining marginal utility of breeding:

Every baby born is slightly less needed than the one before, but it promises to command slightly more in resources, whether water, fuel, clean air, species varieties, forests, fish, etc., and especially the tax dollars of the educated non-breeder.

The educated non-breeder would do best to emigrate to a land, maybe Singapore, that values contributions from the smart and well-educated, like Eduardo Saverin. The folks of Singapore will get ever richer leaving the breeding and all the costs associated with it to dumber countries, like the USSA, which if it ever manages to make some silk purses out of sows' ears, will lose them to countries who value smart immigration policies over wanton breeding by the masses from the shallow end of the gene pool.

Posted by: Jimbino | Dec 5, 2012 9:28:29 AM