Ebenezer Pelosi?

Abortion, Democrats, Domestic Policy, Economy — By on January 26, 2009 at 7:37 pm


Nancy Pelosi wants to ‘decrease the surplus population’, Ebenezer Scrooge style. From Drudge:

STEPHANOPOULOS: Hundreds of millions of dollars to expand family planning services. How is that stimulus?
PELOSI: Well, the family planning services reduce cost. They reduce cost. The states are in terrible fiscal budget crises now and part of what we do for children’s health, education and some of those elements are to help the states meet their financial needs. One of those – one of the initiatives you mentioned, the contraception, will reduce costs to the states and to the federal government.
STEPHANOPOULOS: So no apologies for that?
PELOSI: No apologies. No. we have to deal with the consequences of the downturn in our economy.


So, in other words, the way to help our ailing economy is to spend lots of money that we don’t actually have ensuring that the next generation of workers, businessmen, entrepreneurs, and investors is never born. Sorry, Tiny Tim, you’re just too darned expensive.
I’d like her to say more about just what she means by ‘contraception’, because in this statement contraception sounds like an awfully good code word for ‘abortion.’ And that’s something I’m not even sure Scrooge would have wanted.


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  • http://TheEverwiseBoonton.blogspot.com Boonton

    Granted her response was pretty mangled, I suspect she wasn’t trying to say fewer people lowers costs. I think she was referring to the fact that states have to pay, I think, half of Medicaid costs so if the Fed gov’t picked that up it would be lower costs for the states thereby allowing states to hold off on tax increases & spending cuts (Maybe even let the poor residents of Cal. finally get their tax refund checks from their GOP governor)
    The ‘surplus population’ charge is a nice line but doesn’t really make sense. Fewer kids may lower costs for school and stuff but it would take a decade to see it. And the logic of the stimulas package isn’t to lower overall spending but increase it. At least in the short run.
    Ohhhh and if you follow the last post here aren’t we supposed to believe that Obama is plotting to promote abortion? Whose going to have abortions if people are using birth control? Silly rabbit, Trix are for kids.

  • ucfengr

    I suspect she wasn’t trying to say fewer people lowers costs. I think she was referring to the fact that states have to pay, I think, half of Medicaid costs so if the Fed gov’t picked that up it would be lower costs for the states thereby allowing states to hold off on tax increases & spending cuts
    Of course, that isn’t what she said, but even if that is what she meant, that still doesn’t reduce costs. All it does is transfer them from the state to the federal government. So instead of California having to raise taxes on Californians to fund California family planning, the feds raise taxes on everybody to fund California family planning. This might seem like a good deal for California until you consider that their taxes will have to go up to fund family planning in the other 49 states and DC. If your interpretation is correct, it means that in addition to being inarticulate, Speaker Pelosi is not very bright.
    The ‘surplus population’ charge is a nice line but doesn’t really make sense. Fewer kids may lower costs for school and stuff but it would take a decade to see it.
    Actually, it makes more sense than your interpretation. Reducing births, or “family planning” as you euphemistically call it, has the potential to reduce births in the immediate as well as the long term. Going to the hospital to have a baby is quite expensive, as is raising a child to school age. If your goal is to reduce Medicaid and welfare costs in the short-term, fewer births, whether through using contraception or abortion, would accomplish that goal, unlike shifting “family planning” costs from the states to the fed, for example.

  • ucfengr

    Obama is plotting to promote abortion? Whose going to have abortions if people are using birth control?
    Are you trying to make the claim that abortion isn’t a form of birth control? That’s idiotic. If abortion isn’t a form of birth control, what the heck is it?

  • http://TheEverwiseBoonton.blogspot.com Boonton

    So instead of California having to raise taxes on Californians to fund California family planning, the feds raise taxes on everybody to fund California family planning.
    Don’t get mad. Ucfengr’s class covers the ‘deficit’ chapter next week. More seriously it is questionable whether states should have to pay for Medicaid. They aren’t required to pay for Medicare or Social Security.
    There’s areas this cost sharing makes sense. For example, with transportation the state & Feds will often split the cost. That makes sense since it will give the state less incentive to demand a ‘bridge to nowhere’ if they have to pay $0.50 on the dollar for it. For Medicaid, though, I don’t think the justification is as clear. Since states lack both the borrowing power and money creation power of the Fed. gov’t when the economy goes into recession they are pressured to slash Medicaid to the bone (and Medicaid is pretty bad to begin with). To get technical Medicaid should be anti-cyclical not pro-cyclical. Like unemployment, food stamps, and so on it should go UP in recessions and down in booms thereby moderating the business cycle. Today it is more of the reverse making it worse.
    Going to the hospital to have a baby is quite expensive, as is raising a child to school age. If your goal is to reduce Medicaid and welfare costs in the short-term, fewer births, whether through using contraception or abortion, would accomplish that goal, unlike shifting “family planning” costs from the states to the fed, for example.
    Except it costs next to nothing to insure a healthy kid. True a hospital birth will cost a few thousand but in the big scheme of things you’re not talking about that much. Education costs from new babies being born aren’t going to show up for at least 5-6 years, at which time this recession will hopefully be long gone.
    Are you trying to make the claim that abortion isn’t a form of birth control? That’s idiotic. If abortion isn’t a form of birth control, what the heck is
    Medicaid doesn’t cover abortions except under some exceptional circumstances. The family planning is going to be birth control pills, condoms and the usual non-abortion methods. As far as abortion is birth control it is a very inefficient type. Even assuming one has no moral objection to abortion, it is still a lot easier to avoid an unplanned pregnancy before hand rather than abort it after.

  • http://TheEverwiseBoonton.blogspot.com Boonton

    http://content.usatoday.com/communities/religion/post/2009/01/61938342/1 is a bit less sensationalistic. It confirms that the issue is over Medicaid. Pelosi’s statement too seems to confirm the cost reduction comes from states having to spend less on their Medicaid budget:

    The family planning services reduce cost. One of the elements of this package is assistance to the states. The states are in terrible fiscal budget crises now and part of what we do for children’s health, education and some of those elements are to help the states meet their financial needs … The contraception [initiative] will reduce costs to the states and to the federal government.

    I think she just mangled her words at the end. Technically the costs to the Fed. gov’t would go up because the state costs are going down.
    http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5itBENNErYRQKT05EtyY6woQTQb1wD95V83N80 goes into it a bit more. It seems the provision was not so much a direct allocation of funds but simply dropping the requirement that states must ask the Fed. gov’t permission to offer family planning in their Medicaid package. Why a state should have to ask permission is beyond me and what criteria the Fed. gov’t uses to grant or deny permission is also beyond me. As for the costs bandied about, it’s probably an estimate of how many states would opt to add family planning and how much of it Medicaid patients would use. I’m going to guess that right now states that are denied permission must fund family planning with no cost sharing w/the feds.
    It also sounds like the provision has been dropped from the current bill.

  • ucfengr

    Don’t get mad. Ucfengr’s class covers the ‘deficit’ chapter next week.
    Now I know that you’re smart and I’m dumb, so please indulge me a little. It sounds like what you are trying to say is that, the feds won’t have to raise taxes to fund Speaker Pelosi’s “family planning” program because the feds will just borrow the money to pay for it, increasing the deficit. Of course, the deficit will eventually have to be paid back by future citizens, who won’t exist because Speaker Pelosi is planning them away. Sounds a bit like Enron to me.
    Except it costs next to nothing to insure a healthy kid.
    That’s just not true. For my health insurance plan, the difference between single coverage and family coverage is $7,500 per year (employer and employee contribution). Even if we just divide that buy the number of my dependents, each of my healthy children costs roughly $2,500 per year to insure. Of course, the kids most likely to be covered by Medicaid are also the ones least likely to be “healthy kids”, so the cost to insure a healthy kid is irrelevant here. These kids are also the most likely to be in some sort of government provided pre-school, which I suspect could cost something approaching $5-7k per year.
    Medicaid doesn’t cover abortions except under some exceptional circumstances.
    That may be true now, but if President Obama signs, as he has indicated he will, the Freedom of Choice act, Medicaid will cover abortions.
    The family planning is going to be birth control pills, condoms and the usual non-abortion methods. Even assuming one has no moral objection to abortion, it is still a lot easier to avoid an unplanned pregnancy before hand rather than abort it after.
    According to the Alan Gutmacher Institute, there are over 1 million abortions per year. This is despite the wide availability of the birth control methods at very cheap prices, even free in many cases. Apparently avoiding unplanned pregnancies is much more difficult than you assume.

  • http://TheEverwiseBoonton.blogspot.com Boonton

    It sounds like what you are trying to say is that, the feds won’t have to raise taxes to fund Speaker Pelosi’s “family planning” program because the feds will just borrow the money to pay for it, increasing the deficit
    Have you like been on a desert island for the last 4 months or something? Yes the proposal is to borrow $800B and spend it on lots of stuff.
    Of course, the deficit will eventually have to be paid back by future citizens, who won’t exist because Speaker Pelosi is planning them away.
    I know you’re being silly here but it is an interesting question. I don’t think family planning actually decreases the number of people. Births per woman has remained more or less constant. In other words, if a woman is going to have two kids in her life she is going to have two kids. Abortion, birth control etc. might determine if she has those two kids when she’s 17 and 21 or when she’s 29 and 32 but for the most part I don’t think it actually has much impact on overall population figures.
    That’s just not true. For my health insurance plan, the difference between single coverage and family coverage is $7,500 per year (employer and employee contribution).
    Family coverage includes your wife as well as your kids. Trying to quickly find a place to quote insurance *only* for a child is tricky but this site http://www.cbpp.org/5-11-07health.htm seems to indicate it can be done for about $800 per year ($66 per month or so). Which makes sense because for most kids medical costs consist of one or two doctors visits per year plus some vaccines. Yes there are kids who will need the million dollar liver transplant but they are a lot less common than the 40 year old adult who needs serious medical treatments.
    Of course, the kids most likely to be covered by Medicaid are also the ones least likely to be “healthy kids”, so the cost to insure a healthy kid is irrelevant here.
    Actually they are most likely to have parents who do not have affordable coverage from their work.
    That may be true now, but if President Obama signs, as he has indicated he will, the Freedom of Choice act, Medicaid will cover abortions.
    Source please? I wasn’t aware that the FOCA had provisions on Medicaid.
    According to the Alan Gutmacher Institute, there are over 1 million abortions per year. This is despite the wide availability of the birth control methods at very cheap prices, even free in many cases. Apparently avoiding unplanned pregnancies is much more difficult than you assume.
    And you are looking at it from the wrong angle. Which is the more effective strategy for family planning; wait until you have an unwanted pregnancy then get an abortion or don’t get pregnant? It’s the latter, that many people still fall into the former is important but not as far as family planning goes. Many diabetics ‘cheat’ and eat foods they shouldn’t. It doesn’t follow then that a diabetic clinic should feed people cake and then pump them up with insulin on an emergancy basis.

  • http://TheEverwiseBoonton.blogspot.com Boonton

    Waiting on the spam filter to free my post….

  • http://www.heathermclain.com Heather McLain

    I actually had the same thought, that “Family Planning Services” sounded dangerously like abortion services…in fact that would make more sense than birth control because free birth control is already available; free abortions are not. There would be no point in her advocating shelling out money for something the government already shells out money for.
    She is also not thinking ahead to the problems it will cause down the road when the generation of elderly people who stopped having children for the sake of the economy has no one to take care of them.

  • http://TheEverwiseBoonton.blogspot.com Boonton

    Free birth control is not ‘available’.
    It’s already been established the only cost savings she was talking about was reducing the money states spend on this.

  • ucfengr

    Free birth control is not ‘available’.
    Sure it is. Medicaid pays for birth control and condoms are available from many school nurses.
    It’s already been established the only cost savings she was talking about was reducing the money states spend on this.
    Of course you are trying to side step the point. Nobody is arguing that she isn’t talking about saving money, it is the method she is proposing, eliminating kids, or as some might call them, “useless eaters”.
    I don’t think family planning actually decreases the number of people.
    According to the CDC, birthrates have been dropping. Since 1980, the birthrate has dropped from 15.9 births per 1000 women to 14.4, a fairly significant drop. Granted, population has not gone down, but that would indicate that it is being kept up more by immigration, than by natural increase. This is the European model; Europeans aren’t having children, but their largely Muslim immigrants are.
    Source please? I wasn’t aware that the FOCA had provisions on Medicaid.
    FOCA would repeal the Hyde amendment, which prohibits federal funding of abortions. This would allow Medicaid to fund abortions, in fact it would probably mandate it, though I suspect that would have to be adjudicated through the courts.

  • http://TheEverwiseBoonton.blogspot.com Boonton

    Sure it is. Medicaid pays for birth control and condoms are available from many school nurses.
    As I pointed out states have to ask for permission for their Medicaid programs to pay for birth
    control. Many school nurses dispense free condoms? I wonder why drug stores bother selling them for
    up to $20 a box when anyone can walk into a school go to the nurses office and get a load of free
    condoms.
    Nobody is arguing that she isn’t talking about saving money, it is the method she is proposing,
    eliminating kids, or as some might call them, “useless eaters”.

    She is talking about taking some of the state’s spending off of them. That is well established. Keep
    up or keep out.
    According to the CDC, birthrates have been dropping. Since 1980, the birthrate has dropped from 15.9
    births per 1000 women to 14.4, a fairly significant drop.

    First the metric you want to know is not birthrate but total fertility rate. That is the number of
    children a hypothetical woman would have in a lifetime. A graph of it is here:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Fertility_rate.jpg
    You’ll note that the trend is pretty much universal. Higher income countries have lower total
    fertility. Note, though, how the US (the point all the way to the right around the $40K mark) stands a
    bit above the curve (well the curve you would get if you drew one).
    Second, the question isn’t how fertility is trending but does birth control (and abortion) actually
    change total fertility in a lifetime. If women go from having three kids in their lives to two kids,
    or one and a half, that is indeed a change in total fertility but that doesn’t tell us what
    relationship birth control has to it. My thesis is that total fertility is weakly related to birth
    control. Birth control allows women to have better timing of the children they do have (again whether
    they are deciding to have fewer kids today than in the past is a different question).
    Third, for your thesis to work one would have to believe that if women had the children that were
    otherwise prevented by birth control or abortion there would be no impact on future childbirth. In
    other words, imagine a woman today who has a kid at 24 years old but would have had one at 18 but
    didn’t because she had an abortion or used birth control. It’s not very plausible, IMO, to think that
    if she did have a child at 18 that wouldn’t impact her decision to have one later on.
    FOCA would repeal the Hyde amendment, which prohibits federal funding of abortions.
    Source please? Again source means something with some authority, it doesn’t mean just to just repeat yourself.

  • http://TheEverwiseBoonton.blogspot.com Boonton

    Sure it is. Medicaid pays for birth control …
    Not sure if you realized it but the moment you wrote this you contradicted your argument that the ‘cost savings’ was about having fewer mouths to feed. If birth control is already free then everyone who wants it is already using it. If the Fed gov’t picked up the tab (or a portion of the tab) from the states that would reduce the impact on state budgets but wouldn’t cause any actual increase in birth control use. If you’re implementing a policy that has no actual increase in birth control use you’re not going to get any fewer mouths to feed.

  • http://www.redwhiteandbluepatriotblog/blogspot.com Red,White,and Blue Patriot

    She’s a damn Feminazi. You know the ironic thing she is a socialist who wants the “State” to pay for everything. So hypicritally. Its scary knowing that she is just two bullets away from being President. NIGHTMARES!!! I would take a bullet for Obama or Biden just knowing that Pelosi is waiting in the wings.

  • http://www.redwhiteandbluepatriotblog/blogspot.com Red,White,and Blue Patriot

    She’s a damn Feminazi. You know the ironic thing she is a socialist who wants the “State” to pay for everything. So hypicritally. Its scary knowing that she is just two bullets away from being President. NIGHTMARES!!! I would take a bullet for Obama or Biden just knowing that Pelosi is waiting in the wings.

  • http://www.jpweightlossblog.com Healthy Diet Lets Woman Lose Thirty Pounds in Thirty Days

    Hi, good post. I have been thinking about this topic,so thanks for posting. I’ll definitely be subscribing to your posts.

  • LaughAtTheBible

    Just another pro-life rant that uses twisted information.

    Is everyone in society a worker, businessman, or entrepreneur? No. There are serial killers, petty thieves, and others who are a bane to society. So, does it make sense that every “Tiny Tim” would be a contributor to society. No, it does not. In fact, abortion is mainly caused by rape and teenage pregnancy. Teenage mothers would most likely treat their children with contempt because the girls are overwhelmed with responsibility and their dreams would most likely fizzle out. Rape victims would also react this way, albeit for different reasons. The children would suffer and become sociopathic. Therefore, the children who were not born would have been more likely to have become serial killers, petty thieves, etc. Adolf Hitler had abusive parents. Research first, theorizing second. Not vice versa. 

    “It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts.”
    ~Sherlock Holmes

  • LaughAtTheBible

    Whoops. Add a question mark after the question. 

    I HATE this comment system. I have to say who I am EVERY time, and the developers assume that the email will ALWAYS contain the persons name. Stupid generalization. Also, there is no EDIT button.

  • Drsteeve

    “It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts.”
    ~Sherlock Holmes

    So you would have us commit the “capital mistake” of theorizing that aborted babies would have been thieves before they are even born? Then, based on your theory, you’d condemn these “thieves” to a judgement more severe than the likely judgement they would receive had they been born and had they ACTUALLY committed the crime of thievery? 

    Makes perfect sense. Way to outthink the “pro-life rant,” LaughAtTheBible.