Friday, July 27, 2007

More on Freedomnomics from a talk I gave at the Phoenix Chamber of Commerce

John Lott, professor of economics at the University of Maryland and author of Freedomnomics: Why the Free Market Works and Other Half-Baked Theories Don’t, says he believes the 19th Amendment in 1920 that gave women the right to vote led directly to the growth in the size of the U.S. government.

At an Arizona Chamber presentation Tuesday, Lott said the rate of increase in government (as measured by percent of GDP) in the decades following 1920 tracks perfectly with the increasing voter turnout among women during the same time period. He said women tend to favor more government programs than do men, and the change in attitudes toward the proper role of government correlates exactly with the increased involvement of women in the political process. Other of his conclusions/observations included:

• The legalization of abortion in 1973 resulted in an increase in the crime rate, especially in the murder rate. Lott’s reasoning here is that whereas before Roe v Wade, women would adopt out their children born out-of-wedlock, after 1973, the numbers of women carrying their babies to term increased. Among those who chose not to abort, many instead chose to raise their child alone in a single-parent household, which, he says, studies have shown are less nurturing than two-parent households. He said the lack of quality parenting leads directly to lower grades, higher dropout rates, more delinquency and ultimately increased crime and murder rates. . . . .


Here is a discussion of my research in German.

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