2013 March 23 Saturday
Economic Diversity Comes To The Suburbs

Diversity is strength (or so the liberal faithful tell us). Suburbs are developing a more diverse assortment of income levels. No longer are suburbs full of just the middle class. Down with homogeneity. Up with poverty. The poor enrich our lives by showing us alternative lifestyles.

The number of suburban residents living in poverty rose by nearly 64 percent between 2000 and 2011, to about 16.4 million people, according to a Brookings Institution analysis of 95 of the nation's largest metropolitan areas. That's more than double the rate of growth for urban poverty in those areas.

The poor are growing in number. Suburbs are losing their status as shelters from social and economic pathology. We know (because are told by our masters) that diversity is good. So then are the diverse forms of poverty enriching the lives of suburbanites? If you don't have to go to a city to see poverty does this make you a better person? I hope so because America is certainly becoming an economically more diverse place.

Single parenthood is one cause of greater economic diversity. Single moms can't make even half as much money as a married couple and they carry extra burdens. Therefore policies and social norms should strongly discourage making babies outside of marriage and should strongly discourage divorce. But single moms create even bigger problems in the next generation: boys raised by single moms do much worse in the labor market.

Only 63 percent of children lived in a household with two parents in 2010, down from 82 percent in 1970. The single parents raising the rest of those children are predominantly female. And there is growing evidence that sons raised by single mothers “appear to fare particularly poorly,” Professor Autor wrote in an analysis for Third Way, a center-left policy research organization.

But read to the end of that article for what Christopher Jencks says about the absent fathers. The single moms are coming from parts of society where men are pretty dysfunctional. Of course, liberal academics and reporters use assorted euphemisms rather than much more helpful blunt statements. But you can guess at some of the details.

What practical measures would most help improve the outcomes for boys born to single women? I can think of a few:

  • Give boys educations that appeal to the interests of boys. More male teachers. Novels with male themes (e.g. war and coming of age ordeals). Histories centered around competitions and wars. Wilderness survival. Physics and things.
  • Encourage single women who want to get knocked up to get knocked up by higher status males (who will have genes for higher IQ, greater ambition and greater health).
  • Stop letting in low-skilled immigrants who compete with the poorly educated lower classes. Our lower classes are too poor already. Stop piling on them with more imported cheap labor competition.
Share |      By Randall Parker at 2013 March 23 01:01 PM 

YIH said at March 24, 2013 7:02 PM:

I've said for some time on other forums that schools (beyond 3rd grade) should be segregated by gender. From 4th grade on, all boys (and all male teachers if possible) and all girls/all female teachers.
The focus of schools should of course be education. The 'meet market' aspect of male/female co-education is nothing but a distraction from that purpose. Granted, it won't completely 'de-sexualize' schools (see Catholic priest scandals) but it would seriously reduce the problem.
It would also expose boys to male role models that many desperately need.

Anonymous said at March 25, 2013 7:35 PM:

"Encourage single women who want to get knocked up to get knocked up by higher status males (who will have genes for higher IQ, greater ambition and greater health)."

Please, consider the HBD bubble you inhabit, Randall. How in the world could this conceivably be encouraged?

Randall Parker said at March 25, 2013 7:54 PM:


What obstacles do you see? Moral? Religious? Yes, today hard to overcome those obstacles. But Christianity is weakening in the US. The Religious Right peaked years ago. Granted, they are still powerful. So what to do? We'd need a few wealthy people to fund something:

Once we have really good understanding of genetic variations that contribute to IQ, health, and physical appearances next would be to use genetic screening to create a high IQ sperm bank. Then fund IVF with embryo selection for poor women who agree to use the sperm bank. They'd get final say on embryo selection. They'd get to see what their offspring will look like and will be offered a selection of smarter and better looking embryos to choose among.

Add in some genetic engineering to make the sperm have really low genetic load (few harmful mutations) and the appeal to the poor single girls would become even greater.

ananononomous said at March 25, 2013 9:12 PM:

And the low socio-economic status woman who does that sort of thing would be implicitly insulting herself, her peers and family if she opts for sperm-bank babies rather than being impregnated by one of her own kind: someone from her own community. In fact, I'd bet it would be almost psychologically impossible for her to undertake that sort of action, unless she's some solitary person secluded from her native community. And the look the consequence -- you'd be denying the low status men who create single-mother babies less of a chance to breed (i.e, less of a chance to have sex, as single-mothers aren't gonna be as attractive or as eager as non-single mothers.) What would these men do? You'd have more instability and trouble.

People are not going to practice eugenics on themselves. Some nerds and rich people might, but the masses won't.

Randall Parker said at March 25, 2013 11:06 PM:


Denying low status men the chance to breed by luring low status women toward other breeding options is the whole idea. Are the low status men dangerous? Some of them are. Their kids will be dangerous too. In the long run preventing their breeding will cause a large reduction in crime and social pathology.

Psychologically impossible: Not if the incentives are big enough. A woman who is willing to pop out babies with 3 or 4 different guys isn't like a Beaver Cleaver's mom. A woman shown the computer generated picture of the sort of very handsome potential son and an very pretty daughter that she could have with help of IVF is going to be very tempted. Women want good looking kids.

ananononomous said at March 26, 2013 5:35 PM:

"Denying low status men the chance to breed is the whole idea." That's pretty fucked up. Seems very inhumane. These low-status men would be justified in taking vengeance on their high IQ overlords who have denied them the chance to breed.

Randall Parker said at March 27, 2013 10:34 PM:


Inhumane? Producing more low IQ kids in an age when the demand for manual labor is collapsing is inhumane and also harmful to the rest of the population.

Who created civilization? Who created the industrial revolution? Who created science? Really smart people.

Read Gregory Clark's A Farewell To Alms. We wouldn't have had the industrial revolution in the first place if the middle and upper classes didn't outbreed the lower classes. That selective pressure made the English people gradually concentrate the genetic variants that gave them the ability to do the industrial revolution.

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