"There are only two ways of telling the complete truth—anonymously and posthumously."—Thomas Sowell
Tuesday, October 09, 2018
Tillman's Irish Times' Interview on Western Demography
It is a pattern law lecturer at Maynooth University Seth Barrett Tillman noted recently, when he wrote: "Have you noticed the number of western leaders with no children? Odd."
Tillman believes politicians are reflective of a wider society that is simply not reproducing. Reports reveal a looming fertility crisis across Europe, as birth rates fall below replacement rates. Ireland has the second highest birth rate in the EU, with 1.92 live births per woman, compared with the EU average of 1.58 - but a rate of 2.1 is needed to maintain population size.
"It's an important issue," says Tillman. "It may very well be the defining issue of our time. The demographic implosion of the western world: people just aren't having kids. The whole system was built on the presumption there would be a pyramid in terms of workers, with fewer going into retirement than coming into the working world, so state payments can be supported by an ever-growing population. That presumption has been proved wrong.
"Politicians are reflecting a societal shift towards not having children, or waiting too late in life to do it. The idea of having two children - and just being at replacement level - let alone three or four children, is lost. Not having children is part of a larger trend of delaying marriage, delaying children, not having children at all, or putting it off until you're infertile. It's not where western society was even a short time ago.
"One of the interesting things about Trump is he has lots of kids. That didn't hurt him at all with the sort of people who live in the key states he was trying to win."
From: Larissa Nolan, Pregnant
pause: why more people are choosing not to have children; The number of
childless European leaders is reflective of a wider society where fertility
rates have fallen dramatically, The
Irish Times, Oct. 9, 2018, Healthp.8
<https://tinyurl.com/yazew3qk> (Press Reader), <https://tinyurl.com/yczyzt94>
(available on Nexis) (quoting Tillman);
And also reported in: Larissa Nolan, Pregnant pause: why more people – including politicians – are choosing not to have children, The Irish Times (Oct. 12, 2018, 6:01 AM),