So I'm new here if you couldn't tell. I've never done this before (except on MySpace, but I'm pretty sure that doesn't count!) I'll share my demographics with you....I'm a male in my mid-30's, white, from the midwest, married with two step-kids who are 14 and 12. I consider myself Christian and am somewhat active in my faith, although I am not currently active in my church. I am also a business owner in the blue-collar industy of material handling equipment. I consider myself an Independent voter, although I tend to vote for more Republicans than Democrats.
I've been dying to do this for weeks now, you know, getting involved with issues. Starting talks and debates about some of the hot topics of the day is something I've been craving to do. While trying not to be to fierce or harsh one way or the other, I do have my beliefs and I feel pretty strong about them. I guess I'm just curious if by sharing my thoughts with others, will I be attacked by left-leaning individuals? Or will those on the right say I'm not going far enough? I guess time will tell.
I've been thinking about our current economic condition, not just ours personally, but the country's. In light of all of the talk, blame and finger-pointing, I thought I'd do some digging into some things...more like where we in the past, as a country, didn't really take our future into account by making, in my opinion, one very crucial economic mistake.
I also think it's important that we as a people consider the implications of not just what's going on or how we got here, but also to come up with a plan for both the short term and the long term so we can start moving forward as the economic powerhouse that we're supposed to be.
With the short term goals, I have to be honest here, I'm not an expert, so I'm open to suggestions on that. I think the big deal to consider is that a perfect example of what not to do is the "Pork Barrel Spending" in the Stimulus Bill that everybody was talking about. Let's cut to the chase using one example. "Green cars" for the government employees is a good idea and I agree that it's a good idea, but is now the right time to do this?
Is this creating jobs right now?
Is this really going to stimulate the economy in the short term?
I'm for the whole "green" thing, but can we take care of that when we're better off financially? Basically, to me it's a timing issue, nothing more, nothing less. I think if we do the things like taking timing into consideration, we'll end up ok, but without getting into great detail, let's get to the purpose of this article, the long term economic plan.
It's very simple.
So simple it's actually shocking, and it's thinking "outside of the box."
Here it is, ready?
Now before people who are reading this start going off on me, please remember something. I'm talking pure economics here. That's it. I'm not going to go into the faith argument or the right to life or any of that. The fact is, morality is relative these days. What's right for me is not right for you, I get that, and that's exactly why I'm not going to introduce or entertain any of those arguments here.
I'm talking pure hardball economics. I've done some research, here's the stats I've found....
As of 2007 (the last year of available data,) according to statistics both at www.nrlc.org (yes, it's the National Right to Life website, which I used only for statistical purposes for this article) and the Guttmacher Institute (Planned Parenthood's special research affiliate that monitors trends and statistics,) there have been just shy of 50 million abortions in the U.S. since Roe V. Wade in 1973.
The next step is to figure out what each life is economically valued at, and the simplest way of evaluating the economic value of a citizen of any age is to use the Gross Domestic Product figures (more info on how the GDP number is calculated per capita is here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gross_domestic_product. For Wikipedia non-believers, go to http://economics.about.com/cs/economicsglossary/g/gdp.htm)
Basically the GDP accounts for the averages, rich and poor, jailed and free, urban and suburban, regardless of age, race, color, sex, etc... I used information found at http://www.thecostofabortion.com/articles/calculations.pdf to get the total cost of all abortions (or as they title it, "total missing.") They use the GDP value, which is different every year, since 1973 and mulitply that by the number of abortions per year. You can research the historical GDP data yourself if you wish, I just used their website in the interest of time.
The results? Are you all ready for this?
The amount of GDP lost since Roe V. Wade is over $37 TRILLION DOLLARS!!!
...and that number only accounts until the end of 2007! 2008 numbers aren't yet available. However, based on the 2007 figures, on average when everything is added together, our economy loses over $1 TRILLION DOLLARS EVERY YEAR from this! How does that figure make any sense? It's not just the cost of the baby, it's the lost manufacturing dollars of all of those baby's needs too, lost pay to employees that never got hired because of the lessened demand, so on and so forth, but more on that next.
Ok, so, $37 trillion...just out of curiousity, how much was that economic stimulus package for again? It's about 1/37th of what losing those little "money-makers" cost us.
Opposing argument? "It costs money to have a baby! Some people can't afford it." Well, yes and no. I understand the immediate impact may by significant, if of course, you're thinking just of yourself. Any economist will tell you that the economy is a perpetual cycle sort of like what I described two paragraphs ago, but here's another example:
You are a gas station attendant. Your new baby needs clothes, that you buy at Wal-Mart, that another paid employee stocks, shipped by a paid trucker to the store, that came from a manufacturer with paid employess who made the clothing at the plant, down the street from your gas station, one of the manufacturer's employees is a regular at your gas station, who has to employ you to transact the business. This keeps you employed, and over the long term because you have a job, you are making money instead of taking money from Uncle Sam, money that I would end up paying for. This example is incredibly simplified, but I think you get the point.
Perhaps the next argument would go something to the effect of "Well, we're in the mess we're in because the Bush Administration mis-managed our money, not because of abortions." Not so.
Without getting into great detail (and you can all research this yourselves anyway,) the economy was in trouble when Bush got there, and combined with the banks being forced to make home loans to people who shouldn't have been able to get them because they didn't make enough money to afford it, combined with Fannie and Freddie's mis-management, the timing of the Iraqi War, 9/11, greedy bankers that offered high risk loans, and other factors, it was a "perfect storm." The fact is, we not only could've used that extra $37 trillion to cover this cost, but also the cost from the recession President Bush walked into himself in '01, the recessions before that, so on and so forth, with a significant surplus to spare.
My additional argument to end abortion is this: Your rights end where my rights begin. There's a reason you can't yell "FIRE!!" in a crowded movie theater or you can't open a shooting range for that .357 you may have in your backyard. The reason is that just because you have Freedom of Speech and the Right to Bear Arms, those rights are superceded by the rights of others to not get trampled in the stampede out of the theater or to not get accidentally shot walking on the sidewalk.
Basically, the "right to choose" should not override my right to the pursuit of happiness. My right is being hampered by my tax dollars going to a stimulus package that shouldn't be necessary because we're missing over $37 trillion dollars.
But here's another stat for you.
$1 trillion dollars (the current stimulus plan which now is estimated to cost almost $1.6 trillion in the end) costs every American $3,333. That's per person. So in my family of four, it's costing us almost $13,333. Do you know what I can do with that money? Oh, by the way, that doesn't include the 2008 stimulus package that cost my family an additional $4,000, so now, in one year, my family just paid out $17,333...IN ONE YEAR!!! That's in addition to the taxes I paid out. Oh wait a minute, I forgot to add in the loss on my home's value since this recession that shouldn't have happened occurred, that's another $50,000.
Now, let's add in the total cost of the $37 trillion as interpreted into what every American has lost because, logic and businessmen would argue, that any lost or missing revenue constitutes a loss. $37 trillion dollars divided by 300 million Americans is $123,333....PER AMERICAN!!!! That includes children. So for my family of four, the total cost to my family in lost economic value is $493,332. When added to the other costs described above, the total now becomes a staggering $560,665.
This begs the question, "Where's my bailout?"
Bottom line: If you want true, long term, economic security, the only way to do that is to keep money pumping into the economy. If you eliminate people, you eliminate revenue...it's that simple.
Eliminating 50 million people from our current population would entail either killing, euthanizing, or otherwise moving/relocating all of the people of the states of Illinois, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Ohio and Wisconsin. Do you really think that losing all of those people wouldn't effect our economy???
This is a facts and numbers argument only. This is not about a faith argument, or my morals and ethics versus yours. These are cold, hard, spin-proof, true facts. You see, facts are facts and numbers don't lie. Spin makes it political, and this is not a political argument, to the contrary, its an economic one.
I encourage any and all comments to this, but only under these conditions: Any response containing arguments based on faith, ethics or morals are uninvited. Please do not be rude or insulting as name-calling is a sign of a lack of intelligence. I want to hear educated, economic-based arguments both for and against abortion.
This is what intelligent debate is all about.