Government is a really great entity for coming up with ideas. Government believes that they are the answer to every problem, and most of the time (or so it seems) they think more about today’s problem then what will happen tomorrow, or the unintended consequences of their solution.
I mean, who else plans to spend their great grandchildren’s money today?
Rewarding Single Motherhood
One such problem is the problem of single moms. Government looked around and saw that there were single moms around, and no one likes it that these people (and their children) were not being cared for, so government decided to propose a solution: Give aid to unwed and single moms.
The unintended consequence was that the women could get money, just so long as they were unwed. So it told women that they could live with a man, and not marry him, and continue to get funding.
Better yet, they can get money from the dad, who may not be the guy that they’re living with, and they could possibly make it so that they don’t have to work.
Women in the Workplace
Then, add to that, the idea that the government created programs to help keep mom away from her kids. First, they encouraged mom to get in the workplace. Then they guaranteed they could take enough time off to have them and still come back. Finally, they provided a pre-tax benefit for sending a child to day care instead of watching them yourselves.
If it wasn’t obvious before, it should be now: Though government claims to be pro-family, it has been anti-family for at least a generation. This is also evident in domestic partner benefits and the stance of being pro-civil unions.
If we taxed day cares more and took away the pre-tax advantage of paying for child care, then we’d encourage parents taking responsibility for their own children, have fewer parents in the workplace (probably women) and therefore have more jobs open up—therefore unemployment would drop.
But We Can’t Make it On One Income
Well, first of all, I’m not saying that we should turn it off immediately, but gradually. Second, you only believe this to be the case for two reasons:
- Most Americans are living way too extravagant lives. It has been proven that families can survive on one income, even moreso because…
- With that many fewer women (or men, depending on if dad stayed at home) there would be a trickle effect:
- Fewer women in the workforce would mean more jobs would open up (thus lowering unemployment).
- With more jobs available, the money that would be offered to fill a position would increase (basic laws of supply and demand).
- The level of care and education of the next generation would go up because parents would get more involved in their children’s life, they would be more involved in their education, and both of those are factors in how well children do.
But Women Are Fulfilled In Working
Not any more than they are raising the next generation. The impact one woman can have on future generations is bigger when she devotes her lives to working with them than when she spends her time in the workforce answering phones or any other work she finds herself in. The impact that we have on future generations is always overlooked and undervalued, when in reality, when a parent gets involved in a life they help shape and direct their entire lives.
3 thoughts on “Promoting Marriage, Strengthening the Next Generation while Lowering Unemployment”
Agree with your basic premise that one job per household is sufficient and will lead to less unemployment. But you can’t really try to influence this thing either way. I mean, government shouldn’t be trying to get mothers to join the workforce, and you can’t be trying to influence them to stay at home. Women spent the last century trying to get out of the confines of their homes. Now you want to ring them back in?
@Ling: Government already influenced them to get into the workforce, but it’s not best for our society. In fact, many women are leaving their jobs as it is. I’m not necessarily saying that the woman has to stay home– just that parents have to take direct responsibility. Dad can stay home if that makes sense.
As to your last question, it all depends on how you view the home. In today’s society, many women have thriving businesses from the home, they have more connection than ever before, and it’s a whole different culture. But the next generation is the greatest thing that any man/woman can work on, for there lies our future. It’s the most important thing, and we have made it look like it’s not. We have to repair that damage.
I NEVER even thought about the child tax care credit, mainly because we’ve never been able to take it so I don’t even think twice about it. But you are exactly right! What a “perk” to get a woman into the workforce.
As for what Ling said, the main reason women have been trying to get out of the home for the last couple of decades is because culture shifted and told women they should not be satisfied with “just” motherhood and the caring of their home. Instead of being a source of pride and accomplishment to raise responsible, hardworking children, it became a mark of inadequacy if the woman wasn’t doing that AND working outside the home. And as a result we are now dealing with a society of latchkey children who have a less stable home environment because both parents are gone so much. I can testify to this. My mother was a powerful corporate executive when I was in junior high and high school. I never saw her. She left at 6:30 in the morning, worked till 8:30 at night, came home and ate and went straight to bed. Then when I was a senior there was some company changes and a man who didn’t do half the work she did got promoted over her simply because of his gender (it was a very pro-male company; my mom and one other lady were the only female executives). My mom was infuriated and quit on the spot, and from that moment on decided that she would never again devote her life to working. Of course at that point I was almost gone from home, and we’d lost 7 years when we could have really built a strong relationship.
If the country continues down the direction it is going, we will become a total welfare state, rewarding the lazy and irresponsible and punishing those who try to make an honest living.
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