We normally do not consider abortion in economic terms. Usually it’s tagged a legal, human rights, or liberty matter. Yet the economic fallout has been a financial bloodbath for America’s tax revenues, economic growth, immigration policy, and Social Security. In fact, it’s been such a massive attack upon US prosperity it’s surprising it’s not normally analyzed from this angle. But one does not need a degree in finance to understand the loss of 55,000,000 Americans has grave economic consequences.
One group estimated there have been over 55 million abortions since 1973:
In a new document, “Abortion Statistics: United States Data and Trends,” estimates that there have been 54,559,615 abortions since 1973 based on data from both the Centers for Disease Control and the pro-abortion Guttmacher Institute, a former Planned Parenthood research arm. Guttmacher receives numbers directly from abortion centers themselves and is the prime source for more current figures because the Centers for Disease Control has never tabulated accurate numbers of abortions.
Starting with 55 million aborted fetuses, let’s assume about 5% of these unborn—or 2.5 million—would have been lost for some reason—medical, such as deformities, etc. Because some abortions are done for this purpose, which also include aborting Down Syndromes, etc. Plus some would be born dead, anyway.
Given 52.5 million live births, how many would have lived to child-bearing years? Let’s say another 5% of all persons are lost before they will reproduce. The average American woman has 2.5 children in her lifetime. If half of the 50 million persons aborted were women, that leaves 25 million women who would have had 62.5 million descendants. Further, these 60 million would themselves have had more children starting approximately 1985. That would have added, let’s say, another 30 million females. At even 1.5 children a piece, that would add another 45 million by 2012.
That leaves a gap of 50 million + 60 million + 45 million potential but canceled Americans, meaning that 155 million more Americans would have been produced. This is a staggering number.
If there were only 135 million Americans lost to abortion, how much income and taxes and Social Security has been lost? Median income for men since 1970 has been approximately $45,000 dollars, judged by 2009 dollars. Since women earn less on average, and to err on the side of caution, let’s call the median $30,000.
Let’s say 25-30% of the population never works for whatever reason, that still easily leaves at least 100 million Americans employed. If the average American works 30 years, that would be 100,000,000 X $30,000 x 30 years.
That income would equal $90 trillion dollars. Over the last 40 years, there has been much variation in federal tax rates. Given the mean and average over all income brackets of the past 40 years of US federal tax, the figure 25% is surely not excessive, bearing in mind that since the 1970’s the rate was at least 14% for the lowest bracket every year.
So, 25% of $90,000,000,000,000 would be $22.50 trillion. This is how much federal tax revenue has been lost due to earners being aborted out of the American economy.
Social Security tax rates have varied between 4.3% and 5.6% since 1971, but to err on the side of caution, let’s average that to 4%. Therefore, on income of $90 trillion, 4% of that would be $4.4 trillion in lost Social Security taxes for the state coffers.
Total government revenue from income is now at 35%. But let’s measure that at 30% since 1970. Taking the 30% of $90 trillion would mean we are missing $27 trillion from aborted workers, at the federal and state level.
Since this is an admittedly basic analysis of the economic impact of abortion on America, any of these figures can be challenged. But, overall, the financial loss must look something like this amount. And if today’s deficit is $15 trillion, even if the outcome were nearly cut in half, we would still be able to pay off the national debt.
One of the most patently obvious aspects of the outcome of four decades of abortion is there is a connection between doing evil acts and the failure of states. For example, the infamous slave economy of ancient Rome kept a real, vibrant economy from arising, since it is impossible for free men to compete with slaves as wage labor. As one writer states:
The wealth of the Republic was built up on the sweat of the provinces, the loot from wars and the suffering and exploitation of slaves. Like Greece, Rome had inherited a low level of technical skill and achievements were only possible because of the huge amounts of labour and exploitation involved.
Sadly, China—much like America—has chosen to follow humanistic fables such as Malthus’s “earth-is-overpopulated” canard. A current example is China’s own “one-child” policy meant to limit population growth. We can easily deduce this is bad policy given the outcome. China’s one-child-policy wiped out generations of females, causing tens of millions of Chinese men to skip marriage and reproduction. And while China aspires to lead the globe in business, flushing hundreds of millions of potential workers down the toilet is no way to achieve this ambitious goal. Each worker adds to the sum total of GDP, so dumping workers jettisons higher productivity. When public policy goes against the natural law—whether expressly or by flouting common sense, disaster is bound to follow. Such will be true of China, including depopulation via heartless abortion policies.
The fiscal results of American abortion can be described as the natural outcome of immoral policy meeting a failed vision in dealing with the inevitable outcome of the sexual revolution. Much like the grim idea of having only one child per Chinese family, the outcome in America was both predictable and malign. Consider the following natural affects of America’s permissive abortion policy:
When the rate of live births falls versus retirements, then a shrinking population is forced to support the old age needs of persons no longer able to bolster an economy, while their own prosperity falters.
The collapse of the former Soviet Union is an example of a nation whose demographic implosion has contributed to its economic breakdown. “The main reason for their collapse was internal - 300 abortions for every 100 live births for decades. Their future is still grim. Right now, there are not enough younger women to reverse their population decline. Indeed, they are expected to lose another 40 million people between now and 2050.”
Many stories recount Chinese authorities coming to kill newborns of parents violating the one-child policy. At some point, the average person stops distinguishing between killing newborns and late-term abortions, since the difference is arbitrary. Such is the moral degradation of causistry. Reports one site:
China’s “one family—one child” policy results in 13 million abortions every year. Many of these abortions take place under the pressure from authorities. Demographic restrictions are still in effect in China despite the country’s impressive economic growth: family couples are still legally prohibited from having more than one child. The law per se is a gross violation of human rights, although these rights are violated at a much greater extent by family planning department officials.
It cannot aid the common person’s understanding of the theory of natural law when the Constitution is misused to defend such deadly, needlessly violent, deplorably selfish activities as abortion. Such wrong application of America’s foundational concepts merely fuels future human rights debacles. In the meantime, the West’s nonsensical and emotionally brutal hookup culture constantly puts naïve single women in harm’s way via out-of-wedlock pregnancy and abortions.
It’s obvious if a country sponsors expansive abortion policy, this state favors killing fetuses over live births. Such policies create an ownership interest in would-be mothers and defers to the state to empower radical female egalitarianism. This ultimately decouples the members of a marriage and family from each other, substituting the Brave New World of “family planning” which further dehumanizes our existence. Imagine stumbling upon this image:
A morning in Hunan, China, brings an unimaginable sight of cruelty and horror. Lying in the gutter of a bustling main road is the tiny, twisted body of a dead baby girl. She is naked, surrounded by only dirty pieces of hospital gauze. Buses and bicycles speed past the corpse, spraying it with mud. Nameless and unwanted, the newborn’s been dumped by the roadside during winter. Few of the locals hurrying by give her a second glance. To them, she is just one of thousands of baby girls abandoned each year as a result of China’s ruthless one-child policy. “I think the baby had just died,” says a woman who was the only person to attempt to rescue the infant. “I touched her skin, and it was warm. Blood was still coming out of her nose
The number of would-be adoptive parents so far outstrips the supply in America (according to one source—a million couples matching the million abortions) as to utterly shatter self-serving leftist abortion arguments. Liberals would have Americans believe it is better to kill a baby than allow it to come into an uncertain or uncaring world. What a joke! Writes one source:
Each year in the United States, about 51,000 American children are placed for adoption. In addition, about 6,500 foreign children are adopted by Americans, for a total of a little under 58,000 children adopted per year. Experts estimate somewhere between one and two million couples seek to adopt yearly. Every year there are about 1.3 million abortions. Only 4% of women with unwanted pregnancies give their children up for adoption. Planned Parenthood often justifies abortion with the slogan, “Every child a wanted child”. Every childis wanted, and wanted desperately.
The fiscal failure of abortion is certainly a financial bloodbath. Yet, on a deeper level the failure to define fetuses as spiritual beings in need of society’s protective love creates an indefensible human rights disaster. Morally obtuse advocates offer hare-brained arguments defying common sense, representing sanctimonious excuses for irresponsibility. But one must wonder about the ethics of a society who moves heaven and earth to help the “poor,” yet takes the most vulnerable and simply runs them through a blender.
America should draw the conclusion after abolishing slavery that one can never do an “economic analysis” that is satisfactory without including a moral survey, as well. Fortunately, more Americans appear to be waking up to the fact that abortion is an utterly indefensible practice, as over 60% oppose the procedure. But how long can we continue to ignore and trample the rights of the weakest and most vulnerable yet still expect national blessings?
Kelly O’Connell is an author and attorney. He was born on the West Coast, raised in Las Vegas, and matriculated from the University of Oregon. After laboring for the Reformed Church in Galway, Ireland, he returned to America and attended law school in Virginia, where he earned a JD and a Master’s degree in Government. He spent a stint working as a researcher and writer of academic articles at a Miami law school, focusing on ancient law and society. He has also been employed as a university Speech & Debate professor. He then returned West and worked as an assistant district attorney. Kelly is now is a private practitioner with a small law practice in New Mexico. Kelly is now host of a daily, Monday to Friday talk show at AM KOBE called AM Las Cruces w/Kelly O’Connell
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