The Case for Larger Families

Something Sgt. Mom, over at Chicago Boyz, posted today make me think about the vital roles that larger families play in the development of children, and how they assist in the maturation process.

She posted about the experiences of children in the Baby Boom, when it was the norm to raise Free-Range Children, who managed their own neighborhood relationships, without excessive parental interference. Such children grew into adults who were, largely, able to handle their own life without leaning on their parents long after reaching the age of adulthood.

That type of childhood is largely facilitated by the presence of older and younger siblings, both in the child’s immediate family, as well as the parent’s. The spread of family members fills in the gaps between parent and child, and allows people other than parents – who have a vested, familial interest in the outcome of conflicts – to occasionally assist with guidance and mediation.

Yes, brothers and sisters can demonstrate physical aggression, hostility, and just plain meanness on occasion. They can also be led to show compassion, help teach some of life’s hard lessons, and protect family members from bullying. I wonder if at least some of the rise in bullying is because the bullies no longer fear retribution from outraged family members. Brothers and sisters will often know what’s happening at school before either the parents or the school staff get a whiff of trouble. Back in the day, many bullies were deterred by the thought that they would have to face that older sibling, should they bully the wrong kid.

Larger families are often believed to be unaffordable. This is wrong for several reasons:

  • The initial cost is large, but for subsequent children, the infrastructure is present. No need to buy most of the furniture new for the next kid, such as strollers, car seat, crib, etc. For many families, the biggest initial cost is the loss of a second paycheck, That cost will not increase with additional kids.
  • Once the commitment to managing on one paycheck is made, purchases such as homes and cars are viewed with an eye to how affordable they are for the chosen lifestyle. For that reason, it’s important for families not to lock in a lifestyle that requires two paychecks. From the start, they should commit to living on one paycheck (as soon as possible – sometimes, prior debt must be cleared first).
  • College is one big expense that is often brought up. This negates the tuition reduction that comes with more family dependents. It also puts more pressure on the graduate to choose his/her college, and major, with an eye to the best bang for the buck. That’s a feature, not a bug, as kids SHOULD learn that budgets are necessary.
  • Seeing the example of parents working as a team for maximum family good is a wonderful model for life. That team experience comes years before sports participation, and has a greater impact on their character.
  • Budgeting, a necessity for nearly all larger families, allows kids to learn about the value of prioritizing needs over wants. It might also prod some of the older kids to get a part-time job – that experience alone is priceless. Better a paid job that a make-work “internship” – the lessons a REAL job teaches are beyond compare.

In today’s neighborhoods, the larger family is often a magnet for the “lonely onlies”. The solo child gets swept in the melee, and gains an understanding of how more-or-less equals – the kids – learn to bargain, discuss, disagree, and make up. What they learn in that smaller arena will serve them well in career and life.


Mish-Mash on Immigration

Also, including the case of non-immigrants, otherwise known as Illegal Aliens.

There is a distinction that is often lost on the less-analytical among us:

  • A person could be a legal immigrant – someone who applied for immigration in their OWN country, or in the nearest safe country to their own. Who waited until he/she/xer was given permission to enter the USA, and get what used to be called a Green Card – a card showing that the holder is LEGALLY resident in the USA. Such a care does NOT automatically give that holder the privilege of working, nor does it allow them the rights of citizens, including the right to vote.
  • A person might have originally had the legal right to enter – usually for a very limited period. That category can include:
    • Those given permission to enter to take a temporary job – includes the H1-B visa holders, artists, musicians, actors, etc. They do NOT have the right to stay beyond the term indicated in their visa.
    • Those who are students – occasionally in high school (for example, exchange students), more usually college or graduate school. They may NOT work while here, nor collect government benefits.
    • Those who overstay their visa – a VERY large category. Often, the temporary permission is abused by those who never intended to leave in the first place. MANY of those in this category work without having had a permit to do so.
  • A person may have, while underage, been brought into this country. These would be the DACA kids (although many are NOT kids, and lied about the age they came in). They have been given Deferred Action (that’s the DA part of the phrase), but they are STILL illegally present. That distinction is lost on the many women who reason with their female parts. For them, these “kids” are already legal, and only the Meanies in the Foreign-People-Hating Party are keeping them from the American Dream!
  • A person may have reached these shores fleeing for their life – some of them from Muslim countries, or Cuba, or China. These are the ones that asylum was designed to assist, not those who bypassed other countries to get higher-paying jobs in the USA. VERY few of the people pressing against the southern border fall into this category.

And, now for some fun. If you don’t read Watcher of Weasels, you’re missing a treat. I especially love their periodic Illustrated Editions, from which this came.

An excellent question, and one that Leftists have no valid response to.

MFAA – Medicare for All Act, Updated


Link to the original bill – HR 1384.

Let’s start with the first problem, right on the 4th page:

Every individual who is a resident of the United States is entitled to benefits for health care services under this Act. The Secretary shall promulgate a rule that provides criteria for determining residency for eligibility purposes under this Act.

That’s the Secretary of HHS, who will be saying who is – and is not – a resident. Now, I’m PRETTY sure that, under Trump, that qualification would be quite narrow.

But, should a Democrat – I mean, Leftist (but, I repeat myself) – get elected, or another RINO, is there anyone who believes that the rule will become considerably more elastic?

Anyone? Anyone?


The very next Freakin’ page says it all.

—No person shall, on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, marital status, citizenship status, primary language use, genetic conditions, previous or existing medical conditions, religion, or sex, including sex stereotyping, gender identity, sexual orientation, and pregnancy and related medical conditions (including termination of pregnancy), be excluded from participation in or be denied the benefits of the program established under this Act

OK, straight upfront, the bill SAYS that noncitizens, those seeking “gender reassignment”, and those wanting abortions WILL be able to get services. Without charge – excuse me, I mean – Taxpayer-Provided Services, not free.

The one facet of the Original Medicare, and its various alternatives, such as Medicare Advantage, that kept it affordable, was the various ways that users picked up part of the cost. They did this through co-pays and deductibles, primarily.

That’s out now.

The Secretary shall ensure that no cost-sharing, including deductibles, coinsurance, copayments, or similar charges, is imposed on an individual for any benefits provided under this Act.

Well, that’s it. Without those means of ensuring that people don’t abuse the system by running to doctors for every little thing, the system cannot function.

The House is prepared to co-opt nurses and doctors by throwing them a chip:

mandatory minimum safe registered nurse-to-patient staffing ratios and optimal staffing levels for physicians and other health care practitioners;

Although the staffing requirements SOUND rigorous, the bill ASSUMES that it’s just fine to grandfather acceptance of two services that are notorious for having sub-standard care.

Any provider qualified to provide health care items and services through the Department of Veterans Affairs or Indian Health Service is a qualifying provider under this section with respect to any individual who qualifies for such items and services under applicable Federal law.

So, YAY! We’re gonna get care JUST AS GOOD as the VA and Indian Affairs recipients do!

Now, where will the unions fit into this? And, they WILL fit in, or ELSE.

The Secretary shall consult with Federal agencies, Indian tribes and urban Indian health organizations, and private entities, such as labor organizations representing health care workers, professional societies, national associations, nationally recognized associations of health care experts, medical schools and academic health centers, consumer groups, and business organizations in the formulation of guidelines, regulations, policy initiatives, and information gathering to ensure the broadest and most informed input in the administration of this Act. Nothing in this Act shall prevent the Secretary from adopting guidelines, consistent with the provisions of section 203(c), developed by such a private entity if, in the Secretary’s judgment, such guidelines are generally accepted as reasonable and prudent and consistent with this Act.

In other words, the labor unions, women’s ‘health’ centers (abortion advocates), and a whole host of NGOs will be giving “input”. That last part means that these partisan groups have carte blanche to write guidelines that favor them and dis-favor taxpayers, churches, and others opposing this wholesale takeover of our economy.

This next section is priceless.

It is the sense of Congress that tens of millions of people in the United States do not receive healthcare services while billions of dollars that could be spent on providing health care are diverted to profit. There is a moral imperative to correct the massive deficiencies in our current health system and to eliminate profit from the provision of health care. 

Karl Marx would be SO proud!

But, wait! There’s more – oooh, the drug manufacturers are gonna get it – HARD.

with respect to a drug, in the case that the Secretary is unable to successfully negotiate an appropriate price for a covered drug for a negotiated price period, the Secretary shall authorize the use of any patent, clinical trial data, or other exclusivity granted by the Federal Government with respect to such drug as the Secretary determines appropriate for purposes of manufacturing such drug for sale under Medicare for All Program. Any entity making use of a competitive license to use patent, clinical trial data, or other exclusivity under this section shall provide to the manufacturer holding such exclusivity reasonable compensation, as determined by the Secretary

Eh, what the heck, at least the pharmaceutical companies will still be able to operate, as long as they bend on the price. And, don’t worry about the price they’ll likely get from the Secretary. Everyone KNOWS that negotiations that limit walking away from the deal are MUCH better than those in which both sides have to compromise!

Eh, not quite. They will have to give up information – whatever the Secretary of HHS requires (including processing/manufacturing secrets?).

The Secretary may require pharmaceutical manufacturers to disclose to the Secretary such information that the Secretary determines necessary for purposes of carrying out this subsection.

Oh, don’t be such a Gloomy Gus! I KNOW that we can trust the dedicated civil servants not to blab that information to competitors or other countries!

But, don’t worry! The money appropriated is SAFE – it will be in the TITLE VII—UNIVERSAL MEDICARE TRUST FUND! And we all know just how well the government has managed Trust Funds in the past, don’t we?

Even MORE takeovers than the Original Obamacare!

Each workers compensation carrier that is liable for payment for workers compensation services furnished in a State shall reimburse the Medicare for All Program for the cost of such services.

In other words, the money that WC charges employers for coverage will be ADDED to the mix. Rather than just assume that the MFAA will cover workers, this section allows a ‘claw-back’ of money paid to the WC fund. In other words, MFAA has figured out how to TAX the INDIVIDUAL STATES! A true innovation!

States use the freedom they have to set their own priorities on Medicaid expenditures; children are often covered under the SCHIP provisions, that allows states to set the rules for what coverage their poorer citizens might receive.

no individual is entitled to medical assistance under a State child health plan under title XXI of such Act for any item or service furnished on or after such date;

School programs will also be subsumed under MFAA.

Guys, this bill is such an abomination that it SHOULD be obvious even to the Brain-Dead – another word for Leftists. But, after seeing how well our elected officials managed the Steamroller AKA Obamacare, I think it’s clear that we need to raise awareness of the contents of this Hot Mess.

Call, fax, email all the usual suspects/politicians, and register your displeasure with this crap. Feel free to make a copy of this – don’t forget to credit The Declination – – and share it on social media, work, public places, etc. – really, anywhere you might reach someone who will listen before it’s too late.

Here’s a link to an online document, already formatted to make it easy to print.


I Feel LIke Sisyphus

Remember him?

He was the king of what is now called Corinth, He was both deceitful and cruel, but his big mistake was to piss off Zeus. For that, he was condemned to roll a boulder uphill. As it neared the top, the boulder would roll again to the bottom.

Well, America is like that about abortion. Just as we start making headway on changing public opinion (thanks lately to Unplanned and Gosnell, the movie), the Leftists work to roll the progress we’ve made back to square one.

This time, it’s the Medicaid for All bill. It would SPECIFICALLY exempt abortion from the Hyde Amendment, which prohibited using Federal money for abortions.

You will want to become familiar with what the bill will include – go here to learn about the main points, and spread it around – in hard copy, email, and social media.

Here is the pdf of HR 1384, as the Medicare for All bill is called. I recommend reading it. I will be, and will be posting an addendum to this post over the next week or so (depending on how I feel).


Michelle O for President?

Some have said she’d have a lock on the nomination if she wanted it. Others point out that she has a lot of baggage, in terms of inheriting her husband’s enemies, but not his friends.


I think she’s not even thinking about it. I’ll make a bet on what she is aiming for – she wants to be the next Oprah, only bigger. Only, I don’t see her working as hard as the Queen of the Talk Shows did. Maybe a few specials a year, but not daily, or even weekly appearances.

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