Notes Book

Raising Kids

It would be better to have future generations raised by volunteer mothers. The children of volunteers would be happier, healthier, and more productive than children raised by a drafted force of unwilling womb warriors. It saves a lot of trouble if women are able to choose when to get pregnant.

Even those of us who defend a woman's right to choose would prefer a world in which more pregnancies produced happy and healthy mothers and children.

Government undermines natural support for mothers and children and for fathers.

Child labor laws are an important factor. The State has mandated that children can't sell their labor in an open and socially sanctioned market. Child labor laws work hand and hand with free and compulsory schooling. Not only must the children not sell their services for a fair value, they must also be robbed of their most productive hours by the State. The traditional practice of apprenticeship had value. Coupled with modern standards of human rights, apprenticeship for craft professions could be a good thing.

Child labor laws drive down the economic value of children to the point that most men see children as an expensive irritant rather than economic asset. A man in America who is convicted of being the father of a child faces eighteen years of statist extortion for the privilege and very little support for his parental rights, especially if he's poor. Women are hurt even more by these policies, but most women will fight to have and raise children regardless of the cost.

Without the free and compulsory public education system, most families could count on children to stay near and help the family throughout life. The education system radically diminishes the social status of parents, and has contributed a great deal to the breakup of the family in modern societies. The state has clearly subverted the commandment to honor fathers and mothers.

The income tax is deadly for families, women, and children. A family that works together in a family business is much harder to tax than a family with two or more members on W2 jobs. The family business people get to keep more of their income, and the tax laws help them accumulate capital goods and capital. Try to start a small business and you'll soon find out that there are a lot of government restrictions, paperwork, and fees. If you get a job, you just show up and work and you are guaranteed a paycheck, and you'll probably seem to be making more money, but you won't be able to keep as much of what you make, and you won't be able to pass as much on to your kids. The kids won't inherit as much money, and they won't learn nearly as much from their parents. It's easier to take the job, so that's what most people do. If a substantial proportion of the population decides to go into business for themselves it will shrink the state and make the economy more stable and more productive. Modern communications tools are making it easier to go into business for ourselves, and things like child support, student loans, and tax liens on paychecks and bank accounts are forcing more and more people to work under the table.

One person grows an apple and eats it. Another person gets a job and buys an apple at the grocery store. The job apple has to pay social security tax. The apple has to be transported and stored, then delivered to the store, paying taxes each step of the way. Finally the consumer will likely drive to the store, and pay federal and state taxes on the gasoline he uses, sale and license taxes on the car he drives. The home grown apple will likely be of better quality, fresher, and freer of pesticides. The economic system discourages people from growing their own food and making what they need themselves. More freedom means less percentage of the pie goes to the government, but the pie is much bigger. We used to believe in motherhood and apple pie. We need to get back to that, perhaps with less cholesterol in the crust. Then future generations will respect their parents and know how to grow apples and make apple pie.

Leftists castigate corporations for ignoring external costs and that criticism is undoubtedly justified, but the state not only routinely ignores external costs, it ignores direct costs. Many of the interactions the state has with citizens are at least rude if not downright brutal or even deadly. And they are very expensive for the society at large.

If every transaction in our society was at least supposed to be fair, we would be a lot better off than we are now.

Some people like to call themselves pro-life. Ironically many of them want to use the state to enforce their so called pro-life policies. Either they fail to understand that the State is anti-life, or they are incredibly cynical.

If mothers and fathers and children can get along within their family and with the rest of the community, the rest of us should leave them alone. Those who want to control other peoples family and reproductive life should get a life of their own. When families fall apart, so does the economy and the society. The attempt to control families only weakens them.

When authoritarians are in charge, they get rich and the rest of us get poor.

Freedom works. Coercion is counterproductive.