Free contraception uptake

January 31st, 2013 at 1:00 pm by David Farrar

Claire Trevett at NZ Herald reports:

Low uptake negates fears beneficiaries and daughters being pushed into free scheme, says minister’s office.

Only 35 women took up the Government’s offer of free long-term for beneficiaries in the first five months – far short of the number expected.

Last July, Social Development Minister announced the Government would pay for female beneficiaries and their daughters aged 16-19 to get long-term contraception such as an implant, intra-uterine device or the Depo Provera injection.

She set aside $1 million over four years for the policy – enough to fund thousands of grants covering doctors’ fees and contraceptive costs each year.

This is the policy that saw the disgusting cartoon that compared Paula Bennett to Josef Mengele. Shameful.

However, in its first five months from the end of July to the end of December only 35 women took it up.

Ms Bennett said she was not troubled by the low uptake.

“It’s going as I’d expected. We’re not promoting it so there hasn’t been significant uptake, but we’re looking at advertising it more so people are aware it’s available.”

It would be good for more people to be ware of it, so there are fewer unwanted pregnancies.

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85 Responses to “Free contraception uptake”

  1. Redbaiter (8,823 comments) says:

    “It would be good for more people to be ware of it, so there are fewer unwanted pregnancies.”

    Yes yes, lets diminish the concept of personal responsibility as much as we possibly can.

    An outdated and stupid concept if ever there was one.

    Nobody cares for it these days, so that tells you what its real worth is.

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  2. RRM (9,919 comments) says:

    Well, I will admit I enjoyed a guilty chuckle when I saw that cartoon, stupid though it was.
    I like how mad his eyes are. It’s not very flattering towards our Paula though.

    It’s funny how little talk there is of political correctness whenever someone from the political RIGHT takes offense to something somebody wrote or drew or said…?

    http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Llxc1LwE0W4/T7A_DC0Hx9I/AAAAAAAAAsQ/8PO0BYziomg/s1600/Paula%2BBennett%2Band%2BMengele.jpg

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  3. Andrei (2,651 comments) says:

    It would be good for more people to be ware of it,

    Allow me to correct your typo David

    It would be good for more people to beware of it,

    There fixed

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  4. Andrei (2,651 comments) says:

    It’s funny how little talk there is of political correctness whenever someone from the political RIGHT takes offense to something somebody wrote or drew or said…?

    Taking offense is a standard political ploy these days RRM, it diverts from the issue raised and shuts down debate – works every time.

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  5. burt (8,269 comments) says:

    Take away WFF/DPB and watch the uptake rocket !

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  6. hamnidaV2 (247 comments) says:

    Just another failed Tory policy.

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  7. Fletch (6,387 comments) says:

    It would be good for more people to be ware of it, so there are fewer unwanted pregnancies.

    In case you’re not aware, it’s well known that more contraception = more pregnancy. I know it sounds counter-intuitive, but it’s true.

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  8. Monique Watson (1,062 comments) says:

    It’s a disgusting policy. How National view women is abhorrent. And unfortunately, the more Bennett crows, the further left the country goes

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  9. TheContrarian (1,085 comments) says:

    “In case you’re not aware, it’s well known that more contraception = more pregnancy. I know it sounds counter-intuitive, but it’s true.”

    Citation needed.

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  10. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    Women readers may like to weigh in here, but women of my acquaintance have told me that all the long-term methods can have some rather unpleasant side effects.

    Intuitively that makes sense, otherwise why would the majority of women, employed or otherwise, want to take a pill each day when they could have an injection or implant and not have to worry for however long.

    Was the standard daily contraceptive pill not added to this scheme (which is otherwise very good IMO)? Perhaps it should be, and the uptake may rise. Sure the risk of forgetting to take it then comes into play, but better some contraception than none at all.

    Redbaiter says:

    Yes yes, lets diminish the concept of personal responsibility as much as we possibly can.

    I’m all for personal responsibility. I just spent all of yesterday telling the Australian media why city councils were overstepping their bounds in banning smoking in outdoor malls and that smokers had a right to make an informed decision about their consumption of a legal product provided they were willing to pay the consequences (and in Australia, tobacco excise brings in about twice the estimated cost of smoking-related health care, according to Consumer “Choice” magazine).

    But I can’t see the criticism applying here. If I could not afford my hypertension medication (I must reduce my exposure to the KB comments section!) and was offered it for free, I would still need to exercise personal responsibility and take it each day rather than refuse or forget and suffer the health consequences*.

    The lack of exercise of personal responsibility here is surely amongst those who are aware of the program and who ought to utilise it but do not, rather than those who take responsibility for their own fertility and thus save themselves and society from the myriad costs (not just in monetary terms) of unwanted children.

    * Yes others would then be subsidising my health needs, but in doing so avoiding the much higher societal costs of my having a heart attack or stroke. Unless you’re suggesting an absolute Drawinian approach where those who cannot afford health care are left to die?

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  11. TheContrarian (1,085 comments) says:

    “Yes yes, lets diminish the concept of personal responsibility as much as we possibly can”

    Choosing to use contraception instead of falling pregnant is using personal responsibility.

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  12. Redbaiter (8,823 comments) says:

    “and was offered it for free”

    For fuck’s sake, it is not “FREE’.

    It is paid for by other NZers, the poor gormless suckers commonly referred to as taxpayers.

    All you are doing when you offer anything forcibly at the expense of others is undermining societies resolve to care for itself.

    Consequently we end up with a nation of wailing dependency addicts.

    Guess where you look if you want an example.

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  13. Fletch (6,387 comments) says:

    TheContrarian (489) Says:
    January 31st, 2013 at 1:44 pm

    Citation needed.

    The claim that the widespread promotion of contraception reduces the incidence of abortion is a good one. Its basic logic — that because abortions are the result of unplanned pregnancies, contraception, by reducing unplanned pregnancies, reduces abortions — is reasonable and lucid.

    But it’s not true.

    An honest look at the data shows that in virtually every country that increased the use of contraception, there was a simultaneous increase in the abortion rate. In England (Rise in contraceptive use: simultaneous rise in abortions), France (Rise in contraceptive use: simultaneous rise in abortions), Australia, (Rise in contraceptive use: simultaneous rise in abortions), Portugal (Whose abortion rate only began to rise after 1999, after oral contraceptive methods were made widely available), Canada (Whose abortion rate only began to rise after the legalization of oral contraceptives in 1969), Singapore, Cuba, Denmark, the Netherlands, and South Korea – to name a few.That these countries have periodically seen the abortion rate reduced by the use of contraception is good, but it must be taken with a firm grasp of the overall picture: These countries have never seen the abortion rate reduced to its place before the introduction and widespread use of contraception. It is no victory of contraception that it partially reduces a problem it created in the first place.

    But before we address why the introduction of contraception to a country is usually simultaneous with a rise in abortion, we need to address the Guttmacher Institute.

    The Guttmacher Institute — previously the research arm of Planned Parenthood, now a recipient of their annual donations — is the authoritative source for the claim that contraception is not associated with increased abortion rates. Their study “Relationships Between Contraception and Abortion: A Review of the Evidence” determined that contraception reduces abortion rates, and in countries where it doesn’t, “after fertility levels stabilized…contraceptive use continued to increase and abortion rates fell.” This implies that contraception will eventually reduce the abortion rate in those countries as well.

    Here’s the problem. 4 of the 7 countries the The Guttmacher Institute cites to make the claim that contraception reduces overall abortion rates are ex-communist countries: Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Uzbekistan, and Bulgaria.

    At the time contraception became widely used, the abortion culture in these countries was radically different from the abortion culture of the rest of the world. In a 2002 article published in Studies in Family Planning, the point is made that in the Soviet Union “soon after it was re-legalized in 1955, abortion became the main form of birth control, available on request and free of charge…Little ideological or moral opposition to abortion existed.” This cannot be said of the vast majority of countries.

    The fact that the introduction of contraception lowered the abortion rate in these countries — while laudable — can not be used as evidence to make the blanket claim that “contraception reduces abortion rates.” Rather, it seems that the introduction of contraception helped to reduce abortion rates in certain countries in which abortion was already regarded as a moral form of contraception, a view restricted almost entirely to communist and ex-communist states.

    MORE

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  14. Redbaiter (8,823 comments) says:

    “Society’s”,

    ..seeing the edit function seems to be random.

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  15. Fletch (6,387 comments) says:

    My citation comment is awaiting moderation…

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  16. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    Fletch claims:

    In case you’re not aware, it’s well known that more contraception = more pregnancy.

    The UK, which has the highest unplanned preganncy rate in Europe (twice the level of France and Germany), conducted a cross-party inquiry into the issue just last year. The inquiry found:

    Experts told the inquiry that increased access to contraception had helped bring about the 24% reduction, but in order to make further progress there would now need to be an emphasis on relationship education.

    The three MPs heard evidence from stakeholders across the profession, as well as young men and women about their experience.

    Many agreed that while there was, in the words of their report, “plenty of information and availability of contraception… the relationship advice that should go with this is totally absent.”

    To be fair there are some studies that back Fletch’s conclusion and there are others that do not, because there’s rarely a single reason for an unplanned pregnancy (other than the obvious, biological occurrence). Perhaps the most thorough study of the reasons women fall pregnant is A longitudinal study of contraception and pregnancies in the same women followed for a quarter of a century (Lindh, Ellstrom, Blohm,
    and Milsom, 2010). Their results showed:

    Combined oral contraception was the commonest method currently used up to 29 years of age

    So any program which does not include oral contraceptives as an option is going to have a low uptake amongst young girls, who are the likeliest group to have unplanned pregnancies. What’s more, the study concluded:

    Choice of contraception was strongly related to age and parity, and the cumulative total number of pregnancies at 44 years of age, and contraceptive choice was related to age at first pregnancy.

    So preventing the first unplanned pregnancy is the key to preventing others, it seems. That’s why ideology has to be set aside in favour of whatever works.

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  17. TheContrarian (1,085 comments) says:

    “To be fair there are some studies that back Fletch’s conclusion and there are others that do not”

    I’ll accept that but you know doesn’t work? Abstinence only education

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  18. Fletch (6,387 comments) says:

    I posted a comment with citations that is awaiting moderation (probably because of the number of links in it), but here is some of it without the links (you can check them from the page itself).

    An honest look at the data shows that in virtually every country that increased the use of contraception, there was a simultaneous increase in the abortion rate.

    In England (Rise in contraceptive use: simultaneous rise in abortions), France (Rise in contraceptive use: simultaneous rise in abortions), Australia, (Rise in contraceptive use: simultaneous rise in abortions), Portugal (Whose abortion rate only began to rise after 1999, after oral contraceptive methods were made widely available), Canada (Whose abortion rate only began to rise after the legalization of oral contraceptives in 1969), Singapore, Cuba, Denmark, the Netherlands, and South Korea – to name a few.

    That these countries have periodically seen the abortion rate reduced by the use of contraception is good, but it must be taken with a firm grasp of the overall picture: These countries have never seen the abortion rate reduced to its place before the introduction and widespread use of contraception. It is no victory of contraception that it partially reduces a problem it created in the first place.

    But before we address why the introduction of contraception to a country is usually simultaneous with a rise in abortion, we need to address the Guttmacher Institute.

    The Guttmacher Institute — previously the research arm of Planned Parenthood, now a recipient of their annual donations — is the authoritative source for the claim that contraception is not associated with increased abortion rates. Their study “Relationships Between Contraception and Abortion: A Review of the Evidence” determined that contraception reduces abortion rates, and in countries where it doesn’t, “after fertility levels stabilized…contraceptive use continued to increase and abortion rates fell.” This implies that contraception will eventually reduce the abortion rate in those countries as well.

    Here’s the problem. 4 of the 7 countries the The Guttmacher Institute cites to make the claim that contraception reduces overall abortion rates are ex-communist countries: Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Uzbekistan, and Bulgaria.

    At the time contraception became widely used, the abortion culture in these countries was radically different from the abortion culture of the rest of the world. In a 2002 article published in Studies in Family Planning, the point is made that in the Soviet Union “soon after it was re-legalized in 1955, abortion became the main form of birth control, available on request and free of charge…Little ideological or moral opposition to abortion existed.” This cannot be said of the vast majority of countries.

    The fact that the introduction of contraception lowered the abortion rate in these countries — while laudable — can not be used as evidence to make the blanket claim that “contraception reduces abortion rates.” Rather, it seems that the introduction of contraception helped to reduce abortion rates in certain countries in which abortion was already regarded as a moral form of contraception, a view restricted almost entirely to communist and ex-communist states.

    LINK

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  19. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    Redbaiter says:

    For fuck’s sake, it is not “FREE’. It is paid for by other NZers

    I suspect you’re aware I’m aware of that, and are trying to make a point. Of course I meant free from my perspective, that of the patient, which in this case is women on benefits. My counter-argument is that we’re doomed to assume the cost at some point, so better at the cheap contraception end of the process than the expensive and society-destroying unwanted child end.

    The Contrarian, however, has made my point better and far more concisely above, so allow me to reiterate what s/he said: Choosing to use contraception instead of falling pregnant is taking personal responsibility. Subsidised contraception merely makes a choice available where one was not before due to the otherwise considerable cost of pharmaceuticals (artificially so, but that’s a whole different debate).

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  20. TheContrarian (1,085 comments) says:

    “An honest look at the data shows that in virtually every country that increased the use of contraception, there was a simultaneous increase in the abortion rate.”

    greater abortion rate =/= more pregnancy.

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  21. Redbaiter (8,823 comments) says:

    No Rex, you do not use government to undermine personal responsibility or you eventually end up with more people in the cart than pulling it. See Greece. Then nobody can afford contraceptives, not even the taxpayers.

    People want contraceptives, they buy them for themselves. EOS.

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  22. B A W (99 comments) says:

    Yes it is not free, other NZ’s pay for it, but we get much more in return.

    Just think of the medical costs of delivering a baby, the cost of a girl on the DPB for every year the savings start adding up quickly.

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  23. TheContrarian (1,085 comments) says:

    Jesus your hate-filled and angry bastard, Red.

    You want a hug?

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  24. scrubone (3,099 comments) says:

    I’ll accept that but you know doesn’t work? Abstinence only education

    Abstinence if correctly applied works 100% of the time.

    Condoms if correctly applied fail rather frequently.

    So what’s the goal of your education?

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  25. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    Fletch:

    A site whose stated purpose is to “oppose the use of contraception” and is written by “a bunch of college students rebelling against the current sexual culture” is hardly a scholarly peer-reviewed journal. And as that’s the one you’ve opted to quote while your larger number of citations are awaiting moderation I assume you feel it’s one of the better ones.

    As I said above, I know there are such studies which do support your contention (and equally, I know there are others that do not, such as the UK Parliamentary inquiry I cited above, which heard from a large number of health professionals and young people themselves) but “1Flesh” is rubbish.

    Try this Duke University study which concludes that:

    Programs that increase access to contraception are found to decrease teen pregnancies in the short run but increase teen pregnancies in the long run.

    Like I said, it’s an incredibly complex subject we’re discussing here, with studies to support both the “yes” and “no” arguments. Mind you, none of those studies emanate from NZ. Perhaps with the money she’s saved from the poor uptake of the scheme this post mentions, the Minister could commission one.

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  26. Andrei (2,651 comments) says:

    Yes it is not free, other NZ’s pay for it, but we get much more in return.

    Just think of the medical costs of delivering a baby, the cost of a girl on the DPB for every year the savings start adding up quickly.

    Yes and we are closing down schools as well, its all good

    Until – 20 years from now when that little baby who wasn’t born doesn’t enter the workforce, producing goods and paying taxes.

    See this is where we have fucked up and big time at that, seeing pregnancy as a disease to be avoided rather than a blessing that produces the people who will build this nation in the future

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  27. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    scrubone says:

    Condoms if correctly applied fail rather frequently.

    Damnit, could we maybe have some research from people who come here confidently stating opinion as though it were fact? Otherwise this becomes as enlightening as a Bain thread.

    Condoms do not “fail rather frequently” when correctly applied. However condoms do fail frequently – precisely because they are so often incorrectly applied as this WebMD article explains:

    Researchers say the results suggest that user errors are a major contributor to condom failure rates, and millions of unintended pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections could be avoided by improved condom use.

    So the answer, again? Education.

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  28. TheContrarian (1,085 comments) says:

    “Abstinence if correctly applied works 100% of the time.”

    Yes but it relies on people being abstinent (which they don’t) and because the only education they have had is abstinence then they know nothing of sexual health or contraception.

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  29. Kea (12,824 comments) says:

    I am not surprised that NZ women are not lining up to have their sole income source cut off.

    How stupid do they think they are !

    If they want to cut “unwanted” prenancies, then stop paying them to have babies.

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  30. Fletch (6,387 comments) says:

    Rex, I think my original post is available to view now. It’s the same passage but includes the links that show rises in contraception = a rise in abortion – citations for England, Australia, France, Portugal, Canada etc.

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  31. TheContrarian (1,085 comments) says:

    Fletch you said “more contraception = more pregnancy.”

    But you are linking to stats that show more abortion which doesn’t prove any increase in pregancy.

    Try again.

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  32. Redbaiter (8,823 comments) says:

    “But you are linking to stats that show more abortion which doesn’t prove any increase in pregancy. (sic)”

    Ha ha- thanks for the laff. And you present yourself on here as one who is worthy of the effort of rational argument. Good grief.

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  33. TheContrarian (1,085 comments) says:

    I glad you find it funny but more abortions doesn’t mean more pregnancies. It means there are more abortions.

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  34. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    Redbaiter says:

    People want contraceptives, they buy them for themselves. EOS.

    You could substitute a vast number of words for “contraceptives” in that statement and I’d agree with you. But we’re talking a child’s life here. I know some people who know they were unwanted as children. Someone very close to me was once told by a grandparent “…and don’t speak back to me young lady, if it weren’t for me, you’d have been aborted”. Growing up unwanted, whether you stay with the parent or not, produce highly dysfunctional adults and is something no one should have to endure.

    So okay, we refuse to supply an already feckless and reckless young woman with contraceptives. She has a baby. We can’t then say “you shouldn’t be a parent” and sterilise her (or even force long term contraception on her because that would breach the principle that:

    you do not use government to undermine personal responsibility

    So we… what? Cut off her benefit? Fair enough. But what becomes of the child? And what, in your estimate, is the financial and societal cost of whatever it is you suggest we do with it? And what of the next? And the next? Because we can harumph all we like and say “she should be taking personal responsibility”, but she won’t.

    So instead we take responsibility for a number of other, helpless and blameless persons who never asked to be born to a mother who didn’t really want them, just a boyfriend (or even a few minutes fun).

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  35. Andrei (2,651 comments) says:

    Condoms do not “fail rather frequently” when correctly applied. However condoms do fail frequently …. (snip) …….
    So the answer, again? Education.

    Fuck I just splurted my coffee on my screen

    You put any kids thru school in 21st century New Zealand Rex?

    See what happens every year is that they have these classes on Sex Ed.

    The poor little tykes get led into a classroom where a teacher tells them all about the things our modern enlightened think they should know and one of the things dear to the hearts of the enlightened is the proper use of the humble condom.

    Indeed I’m sure there are more condoms consumed in the demonstration of their proper use than are actually put to the use for the purpose which they are designed.

    Boys are told in no uncertain terms that before they allow themselves to be sodomized by their friends to check that their friend’s penis is uitable encased in rubber and so forth.

    And a highlight of the year is when the enter the classroom to find sawn off broom handles afixed to wooden bases on every desk along with packets of condoms. And these are used to practice the fitting of the condom to the penis.

    The reason why condoms are ineffective is because people do not like to use them, they reduce the intimacy of sexual contact and the pleasure to be derived from it

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  36. TheContrarian (1,085 comments) says:

    “Boys are told in no uncertain terms that before they allow themselves to be sodomized by their friends to check that their friend’s penis is uitable encased in rubber and so forth.”

    What fucking bullshit. Citation needed.

    Also – must just be a coincidence that states with abstinence only education have the highest rates of teenage pregnancy.

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  37. Redbaiter (8,823 comments) says:

    How are free contraception and so many other similar misguided character and personal responsibility destroying social concepts going in Greece right now Rex?

    Its all un-affordable in the end. That’s the point you seem so unwilling to recognise.

    Socialism only works until you run out of other people’s money.

    Society will only prosper if we foster personal responsibility.

    Like the Contrarian, you think you are a carer and a sharer. The reality is you are a white ant chewing away at the foundations of the house that is sheltering you.

    (no offence, just making the point.)

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  38. scrubone (3,099 comments) says:

    “Abstinence if correctly applied works 100% of the time.”

    Yes but it relies on people being abstinent (which they don’t) and because the only education they have had is abstinence then they know nothing of sexual health or contraception.

    So the answer to people not listening to sex education is sex education. But we’ve just established they don’t listen to that.

    What happens in reality?

    If you have abstenence education, a certain percentage will take it onboard for a while at least. Then they engage in more risky behaviour. BUT they do it with a long-time girl/boy friend, or someone who has also been abstinent. Yes, this ends up in pregnancy but not STIs because neither have caught them from the wider population.

    If you have condom-based education, you tend to get “safer” sex. But while the use of condoms make the actual intercourse safer, they tend to have sex more often and with more people. Because condoms (used correctly or not) don’t do a very good job of blocking STDs, you tend to end up with fewer pregnancies but more people with STIs.

    There was an article in Investigate a few years ago that explained it – I’d have to go back and look it up.

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  39. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    @Redbaiter

    No offence taken. You and I have always managed to debate without ad homs, and I appreciate that.

    And I do agree with the point you’re making… you can’t just give people stuff and expect other people to pay for it. And I know you’ll say that if we make an exception for anything then we’re on a slippery slope. And you’re probably right – not because we have to be (I can lend you my lawnmower and that doesn’t mean I have to lend you my partner) but because politicians can’t resist gifting other people’s money to win votes.

    But I am inclined to make an exception for contraception. Yes, because I’m a “carer”, and don’t feel any child should be raised knowing they’re not wanted (and kids do know, even if they’re not told directly, when they compare their family environment with that of friends who were wanted). But also because there’s an economic argument (which I note you haven’t addressed): the cost to the state of caring for an unwanted child vastly outweighs the cost of “free” contraception.

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  40. TheContrarian (1,085 comments) says:

    @Scrubone

    Actually condoms are one of the best way (outside of abstinence of course) to avoid an STI).

    And no matter what way you cut – states with abstinence only education have a much higher rate of teen pregnancies.
    It does’t work and now states that used to teach abstinence only now teach sex education with an emphasis on abstinence, realising that abstinence only doesn’t work

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  41. RRM (9,919 comments) says:

    Boys are told in no uncertain terms that before they allow themselves to be sodomized by their friends to check that their friend’s penis is uitable encased in rubber and so forth.

    You’d like that, wouldn’t you?

    :neutral: Seriously – spare us your anal fantasies, please..

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  42. Andrei (2,651 comments) says:

    I’m a “carer”, and don’t feel any child should be raised knowing they’re not wanted

    There you go again with the sad assumptions of the sad middle class. How do you know the kids being raised on the DPB are “unwanted”. This in many, maybe most cases is not true

    See this where a number has been done on us – most young women want children – not those who are patholgically stupid like Helen Clark or the lamentable pair from Auckland central Nikki Kaye and Jacinda Ardern but normal young women do.

    This is built in by biology because this is how the species survives – natural selection and all that.

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  43. scrubone (3,099 comments) says:

    Actually condoms are one of the best way (outside of abstinence of course) to avoid an STI).

    Yes, but I the figures were that once all the factors are thrown in, it only delayed people catching an infection. So someone who would have caught one in 1 month would catch one within 3 months instead. Wishart included an interview with the head of the AIDS foundation who grudginly admitted those figures.

    And no matter what way you cut – states with abstinence only education have a much higher rate of teen pregnancies.

    That was my point yes.

    It does’t work and now states that used to teach abstinence only now teach sex education with an emphasis on abstinence, realising that abstinence only doesn’t work

    You appear to have missed the overal picture which is that what “works” depends on what you are after. If you want lower STIs then yes, abstinence education does indeed work.

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  44. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    @Andrei

    I’ve put four children through secular state schools and while they’ve told me about sex education classes, and even instructions on how to apply a condom, not a one has experienced the situation you describe.

    And there is plenty of research to support the contention that:

    Male and female condoms have fairly low rates of slippage or breakage, and such failure declines as users’ experience with the method grows, according to findings from a large observational study of women

    However, that aside, I agree with your assertion that a major factor in not using condoms is that one or other of the participants (usually the male) feels it reduces the sensation.

    The only answer to that, though, is to make them realise that the consequences of not using one are potentially huge. In other words, education.

    You know what I think would cause teenage pregnancy rates to plummet overnight? Make every boy entering puberty sit through a meeting of a group such as Dads in Distress and listen to the tales of other single fathers, especially those who’ve moved on to a stable family relationship and find themselves unable to support the children they have with their wife due to the state’s demands for Child Support.

    edit:

    How do you know the kids being raised on the DPB are “unwanted”. This in many, maybe most cases is not true

    Again, agreed totally. I was talking unwanted children generally. In fact I believe contraception should be free, full stop. Jenny Shipley had a similar view, evidently.

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  45. Andrei (2,651 comments) says:

    no matter what way you cut – states with abstinence only education have a much higher rate of teen pregnancies.

    This is not actually true – the waters have been muddied (deliberately) here.

    There are certian demographics that have a much higher rate of teen pregnancy than others so by deliberatly using these demographics for your studies but comparing the results with those of the general population in other states you get the desired results

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  46. TheContrarian (1,085 comments) says:

    “If you want lower STIs then yes, abstinence education does indeed work.”

    Well that is counter intuitive, no? In areas where there is abstinence only education there are higher rates of pregnancy meaning there are higher rates of unprotected sex which means a higher risk of STI’s.

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  47. TheContrarian (1,085 comments) says:

    “This is not actually true”

    It most definitely true.

    How many studies would you like me to cite for you Andrei?

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  48. scrubone (3,099 comments) says:

    Well that is counter intuitive, no? In areas where there is abstinence only education there are higher rates of pregnancy meaning there are higher rates of unprotected sex which means a higher risk of STI’s.

    This was covered by my earlier comment. You can’t get an STI from someone who’s never slept with someone with an STI. But if you’re regularly sleeping with people who have an STI, no matter how careful you are you will eventually catch an STI.

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  49. scrubone (3,099 comments) says:

    How many studies would you like me to cite for you Andrei?

    Number doesn’t nessessary count for much in the social sciences. There’s thousands (literally) of studies that claim to find that smacking is bad, but all but a few have the same basic flaw where they conflate abuse with smacking.

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  50. TheContrarian (1,085 comments) says:

    “States with no mandates for abstinence had the lowest mean rates of infection among the overall population and among adolescents. States with mandates emphasizing abstinence had the highest rates; states with mandates to cover (but not emphasize) abstinence fell in between.”

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20378905

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  51. TheContrarian (1,085 comments) says:

    So despite nearly every comprehensive study that shows abstinence only education doesn’t work and the very real demographic data that shows states with abstinence only education have higher teen pregnancy rates than states that don’t you are going to stubbornly insist that it doesn’t count for much?

    Even though the data and conclusions are clear?

    That is crazy, stubborn and not born of a rational enquiring mind

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  52. Kea (12,824 comments) says:

    This is a bizarre situation. We sponsor women to have babies, when they have no ability to support the baby or themselves. Often they are better off drawing on a benefit, than working in a boring low paid job. It is a great career option for them.

    At the same time we seek to reduce the number of pregnancies, from this group of women.

    I cannot think of any other situation where we encourage people not to do something, by paying them to do it.

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  53. Andrei (2,651 comments) says:

    You know what I think would cause teenage pregnancy rates to plummet overnight? Make every boy entering puberty sit through a meeting of a group such as Dads in Distress and listen to the tales of other single fathers, especially those who’ve moved on to a stable family relationship and find themselves unable to support the children they have with their wife due to the state’s demands for Child Support.

    An iniquitous situation, another wrong created by the wrong turn we have made socially.

    But your idea will have little effect because when you are young your hormones are raging, they are telling you to make babies, now is the time to make them.

    We can divert, subvert all we want but biology ultimately rules.

    The educated middle class can control their reproduction better including “terminating” an “unplanned pregnancy” something that happens in this country in numbers that make your head spin but we are on the road to perdition because we do not have a cultural commitment to raising our successors.

    New Zealanders are not raising enough children and those that are are from the underclass.

    We are covering this over through immigration

    The demographics of New Zealand are rapidly changing as a result

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  54. eszett (2,408 comments) says:

    That is crazy, stubborn and not born of a rational enquiring mind

    Well, that assumes an interest in a rational enquiring mind.

    Problem with the stance of the “abstinence only” crowd is that they are driven by blind ideology/theology and ignore and deny any contradicting data and facts and above all human nature.

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  55. Kea (12,824 comments) says:

    Our resident conservatives often claim that gay issues undermine traditional family values and the moral fabric of society.

    However, young unsuported women making careers out of having babies have done far more damage. It is hard to measure but the problems it has caused are enourmous and very expensive, both socially and economically. I deal with the failures of this system daily.

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  56. leftyliberal (651 comments) says:

    “But your idea will have little effect because when you are young your hormones are raging, they are telling you to make babies, now is the time to make them.”

    And the obvious solution is just telling them ‘it’s best not to’. Yes, that’ll do it.

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  57. Graeme Edgeler (3,289 comments) says:

    How many studies would you like me to cite for you Andrei?

    I believe he’d just like one statistically and scientifically valid one.

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  58. TheContrarian (1,085 comments) says:

    @graeme

    here we go

    http://www.plosone.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pone.0024658

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  59. scrubone (3,099 comments) says:

    However, young unsuported women making careers out of having babies have done far more damage.

    I believe you’ll find that they have spoke a lot about both actually.

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  60. Andrei (2,651 comments) says:

    @TheContrarian

    There are several jokers in the pack with all these “studies”. One of the big ones is the African American community which has suffered a huge social catastrophe and now 4 out of 5 new born African Americans is born to a single mother and states with a large African American population show negative results when compared to states with a lower percentage population wise but these results do not apply to the white evangelicals in the same state who might if examined separately be doing better than average across the nation.

    One group who does do very well are the Amish who do have a commitment to “abstinance” education and another the “old believers”. Now if these people can raise their kids not to have births our of wedlock and not to contract STDs successfully why can’t that be applied to the population in general? Because the ways of the Amish and the “Old believers” fill liberals with horror thats why. Liberals do not like a cultures based upon self restraint and duty and quaint old fashioned values.

    Liberals have a commitment to libertinism and want to eliminate the problems that result from this way of being with prophylactics, which the middle classes can manage, to a small extent but the poor can’t – result what has happened to the African Americans and the peoples of south Auckland.

    Its all culture really and if you live in a culture that puts sexual hedonism on a pedastal you’ll get what we have got

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  61. eszett (2,408 comments) says:

    Its all culture really and if you live in a culture that puts sexual hedonism on a pedastal you’ll get what we have got

    I have to laugh at the claim of sexual hedonism.

    If you have a silly, puritan, self-denying, self-loathing attitude towards sex like you do, andrei, then of course every things else looks like hedonism.

    Exactly what you love, andrei, don’t you? Self-restraint, punishment, control. The very essence of your religion.

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  62. TheContrarian (1,085 comments) says:

    It has nothing to do with race Andrei and the “studies” are supported by the demographic data.

    States with abstinence only education have higher teen pregnancy and STD rates comparable to the rest of the USA.

    Abstinence only education doesn’t work.

    You’re we should all live like Amish bullshit is just that – bullshit.

    You wanna live like an Amish – go right but society doesn’t and will never conform to your narrow expectations and beliefs.

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  63. scrubone (3,099 comments) says:

    Abstinence only education doesn’t work.

    You keep using this phrase, but not once do you actually define what it actually means.

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  64. scrubone (3,099 comments) says:

    If you have a silly, puritan, self-denying, self-loathing attitude towards sex like you do, andrei, then of course every things else looks like hedonism.

    Silly? Zero chance of unwanted pregnancy and STI.

    Puritan? If only.

    self-denying? Absolutely.

    self-loathing? Not even close.

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  65. Kea (12,824 comments) says:

    I believe you’ll find that they have spoke a lot about both actually.

    The issue of gay marriage incites far more comment than the issue of unmarried/unsupported women pumping out kids. I see far more social harm caused by hetrosexual women, than by homos of either sex.

    The financial cost of benefits is only the tip of a very big iceberg. If that was the only cost, it would hardly be worth worrying about. We are sponsoring and encouraging an unproductive underclass who demand ever increasing social assistance and have an ingrained entitlement mentality.

    They do not feel grateful for the assistance we give, they simply feel entitled.

    I consider the social costs are possibly worse than the financial ones. I doubt that the offspring of this system will have the altruism of those who paid their way. They are selfish and have a poorly developed social conscience. They in turn pass these views onto their kids and our society begins to decline.

    If the religious conservatives want to preserve family values then that is what they should do and not be distracted chasing rainbows by attacking gays. Gays are not part of the traditional family unit, the conservatives should leave gays alone and focus on building what they believe in, not attacking what they do not believe in.

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  66. Andrei (2,651 comments) says:

    The issue of gay marriage incites far more comment than the issue of unmarried/unsupported women pumping out kids. I see far more social harm caused by hetrosexual women, than by homos of either sex.

    The reason why gay marriage is on the radar at this time is because they are about to legislate for it.

    And the issue is closely related to the “unmarried/unsupported women” issue because marriage as a social institution has at its very heart the idea that it reduces the number of “unmarried/unsupported women” by enciuraging men and women to bond together before having children!!!! So that there are not “unmarried/unsupported women” when they are raising their children – Duh

    That is why gay marriage is about a stupid an idea as can be imagined

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  67. scrubone (3,099 comments) says:

    If the religious conservatives want to preserve family values then that is what they should do and not be distracted chasing rainbows by attacking gays. Gays are not part of the traditional family unit, the conservatives should leave gays alone and focus on building what they believe in, not attacking what they do not believe in.

    Translation: I’ve got no idea what religious conservatives actually care about but they seem to talk a lot about gays, so they must be ignoring other problems.

    Sure, whatever.

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  68. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    Oh no. Someone uttered the second most incendiary term on Kiwiblog (the first being “David Bain”): “gay marriage”.

    And off we go at a tangent that has nothing to do with the topic of the post. Damn it, I was genuinely enjoying reading both sides of the debate because, as I said above, research suggests both sides can be right, depending on a wide range of variables.

    The trick in policy making is to figure out to what extent – if at all – the variables inherent in studies undertaken in the UK or the US translate to NZ and then predicting the effect of setting policy at a certain point on the “abstinence education only” to “free contraception for all” line.

    Surely teh gayz have taken up enough of everyone’s debating time? :-(

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  69. Kea (12,824 comments) says:

    Andrei, I have previously said that I have some time for some of the views held by the religious conservatives, even though I am an atheist who is liberal on the gay issue, myself.

    However your argument is piss-weak and totally unconvincing.

    How are homos getting married going to affect unmarried unsupported straight women? Do you think they are not married or supported because all the good men are taken…. by other men ?

    Poor effort Andrei, try harder 1/10 ;)

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  70. Kea (12,824 comments) says:

    Only 35 women took up the Government’s offer of free long-term contraception for beneficiaries in the first five months

    Can anyone provide the figure on how many women took up the Government’s offer of free long-term benefits for unsupported mothers over the same period ?

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  71. scrubone (3,099 comments) says:

    The trick in policy making is to figure out to what extent – if at all – the variables inherent in studies undertaken in the UK or the US translate to NZ and then predicting the effect of setting policy at a certain point on the “abstinence education only” to “free contraception for all” line.

    Exactly. Understand what achieves what and why it achieves that. Not manipulating the data to try and prove what you’re ideologically opposed to is the “best” way.

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  72. TheContrarian (1,085 comments) says:

    “You keep using this phrase [Abstinence only education doesn’t work.], but not once do you actually define what it actually means.”

    It shouldn’t be too hard. Let me try again. Sexual education which teaches only abstinence from sex has resulted, unequivocally, in higher teen pregnancy rates and has had no effect on STD rates which is why abstinence only education states are dropping the programs in favour of other approaches.

    So – I repeat: Abstinence only education doesn’t work.

    Use your brain scrubone. It is easy.

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  73. Andrei (2,651 comments) says:

    Rex to come back on track – the way liberals operate is to look at some pathology and say we can fix it, then what usually happens their solutions don’t fix the problem but exacerbate it which leads to them doubling down on what didn’t work the first time.

    Conservatives on the other hand look to where the pathology isn’t and ask why and whether that can be applied more genrally.

    Abstinence education has been a political football for years with people with agendas trying to “prove” it doesn’t work. But when you delve into their surveys there is always the joker.

    A famous one in Pennsyvania where there are lots of Amish kids found a hand wavy excuse as to why to they should be excluded for example, while includung a group of African American girls whose older sisters had all had pregnancies and who were enrolled for a voluntary sex ed course based on abstinence – most of these girls never attended it being voluntary. This is the way it is done, usually not so overtly of course.

    But the answers don’t lie in number crunching statistics – from the getgo you would say that the chances of my girls having teenage pregnancies was low, not zero but you’ld know from primary school that they were not likely to and they didn’t.

    It is culture, if the idea of having a child out of wedlock is shameful, if sleeping around is treated with scorn and those that do consdiered as trash by your group, it don’t happen so much.

    It all comes down to what those around you honor and what they don’t

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  74. duggledog (1,556 comments) says:

    I’ve got a great contraception plan: no more free money. It clearly isn’t working is it.

    And here’s one for the boys: you can’t bugger off, you and your family will just have to pay for your share of the child / mistake, even if the taxpayer has to have you cutting gorse.

    See the opponents to this ‘draconian’ (read ‘standard’ until very very recently) measure think people at the more… vulnerable end of society will just end up with ten kids anyway and they will all die somehow. That’s because they actually think poor uneducated people are stupid, and also faintly disgusting.

    Well, I don’t believe this. I actually think 99% of women (and men) are quite smart enough to know free money shouldn’t be turned down. Were that money to be stopped tomorrow (or more realistically phased out), the snapping of legs being closed would reverberate loudly round the bedrooms of this nation.

    Were this to happen (it’s got to at some point) dare I say it, these poor bloody neglected kids we keep so impotently bemoaning the fates of will surely stop being born in such staggering numbers.

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  75. TheContrarian (1,085 comments) says:

    @Andrei

    “Abstinence education has been a political football for years with people with agendas trying to “prove” it doesn’t work.”

    It has already been proven not to work. Study after study after study shows it, the demographics show it and even it’s staunchest supporters have had to face up to the fact that Abstinence education has failed and that, while impressing abstinence is 100% effective, they now have to teach methods of contraception and sexual health.

    You’re living in the past.

    “It is culture, if the idea of having a child out of wedlock is shameful, if sleeping around is treated with scorn and those that do consdiered as trash by your group, it don’t happen so much.”

    Thanks but I think your vision of society that scorns those who don’t meet your narrow preconceptions is fucking atrocious. You’re anachronism, pusing your views on others. You wanna hold those views go right ahead – you have freedom of speech, freedom of belief but don’t expect the rest of us to dance to your insipid, authoritarian and factually incorrect views.

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  76. Andrei (2,651 comments) says:

    @TheContrarian

    I have a little bad news for you my friend – see while your “liberated” views have gained hold among the cultural leaders of the west and every thing seems peachy for now apart from a desperately degraded underclass for you to wring your hands over, the crunch is coming because your decayed and degenrate culture is composed of a rapidly aging population who have contrcepted and aborted their successors out of the picture.

    But nature abhors a vacuum and all those children your kind didn’t have are being raised by the followers of the prophet who as their numbers increase will soon have the upper hand and the democratic right to set public policy.

    And if you think my Christian free will, live and let live philosophy is draconian, you are just gonna love Sharia Law

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  77. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    @Andrei

    Conservatives on the other hand look to where the pathology isn’t and ask why and whether that can be applied more genrally.

    That’s a very good way of putting it.

    It all comes down to what those around you honor and what they don’t

    On that we’re in complete agreement. I tried to inculcate those values into my children and though the eldest two have not married (which I cannot criticise as nor have I) they have had their children to one partner and are both in longstanding and (to all appearances anyway) stable relationships.

    But how on earth do you take a third generation welfare child, like one whose father I’m working to assist at present. The grandmother left one child in England but brought the daughter out here. Gave her a patchy upbringing (we’ve already discovered granny was working while claiming benefits, she refuses to undergo a hair test despite the Family Court order, she was raided by police who found a hydroponic cannabis operation which of course “wasn’t hers” but the fault of the live-in boyfriend du jour…) and is a drunk. The man the little girl calls “Pop” because he was with granny when the little one was born is long gone… that was two boyfriends back.

    So the little girl’s mum unsurprisingly turned out the same way, except her choice of substance is speed. She has told the court-appointed psychologist that “I’m not giving up the drugs, I love them too much”. Her “boyfriend” is whoever will give her drugs to sleep with her, including occasionally the fathers of her other children, who drift in and out of the scene (she also has 3 boys).

    Who will instill in that little girl the values you’ve instilled in yours? An “abstinence class” at school?! You really think that’s going to do the trick?

    I don’t know what will. I just think loading her purse with condoms from about age 11 would probably be a wise idea. It probably won’t stop the inevitable, but nor will a class or two advising her not to emulate the primary female role models in her life.

    She’s 6. She’s delightful. And if you know how to save her, I’m listening.

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  78. big bruv (13,887 comments) says:

    Make is compulsory if you are on the dole or the DPB. If they get up the stick whilst on the DPB then take away their benefit.

    Problem sorted.

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  79. Redbaiter (8,823 comments) says:

    “Make is (sic) compulsory”

    Typically National Socialist.

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  80. Monique Watson (1,062 comments) says:

    WTF RW? If you touted that story around the traps, is their no-one with the ability to supply a stable family home who could support her?. Or if not supprt her, invite her around for a dinner a couple or three times a month so she can see hoe to set out a meal?

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  81. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    @Monique

    The Family Court in its wisdom has decided that any child, but especially any female child, is always, invariably, better off with the mother. When finally (after five years) the court decided that the mother had to undergo rehab before she could have her children, their care defaulted to the grandmother.

    Men, you see, are seen as some combination of clumsy, inept, cold and unloving, with possibly overtones of paedophilia thrown in if we want custody of a female child. At least in the eyes of the exclusively female Legal Aid lawyers who are appointed as “Independent” Children’s Lawyers in the Family Court, and whose recommendations the busy judges (whose numbers are far too low to cope) take without question.

    When a client of mine whom I was assisting in obtaining a restraining order went to see them on a Family Court matter I was told I could not come into the meeting because “no men are allowed on our floor”.

    So I cannot take the girl anywhere. Nor can her father, who gets a couple of hours of supervised access a week, for which he must drive an hour there and an hour back because mum can live wherever the hell she damn well pleases. He’s just lucky, given the size of WA, that she hasn’t shifted a plane ride away.

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  82. nasska (11,491 comments) says:

    Rex

    It seems that the sisterhood have total control. The outlook is bleak.

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  83. krazykiwi (9,186 comments) says:

    If society, and by inference the government put the same resources into promoting the ideal, sex between a man and woman who are committed to each other forever .. as it does to mitigating the consequences of casual sex then our future would be more positive. As it stands the liberal enthusiasm directed to expunging values that are seen to be judeo-Christian is ensuring this will never happen.

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  84. KevinH (1,227 comments) says:

    The low uptake figures tell me that overwhelmingly females reject contraception for whatever reason they may have. The question then is why?
    Is state funded free contraception to paternalistic? Do woman reject being told what to do with their own health and wellbeing?
    Is further education required?
    Sadly the low uptake does mean a continuation of unplanned pregnancies amongst young single women therefore a change of approach and strategy is required for this scheme to yield better results.

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  85. TheContrarian (1,085 comments) says:

    “And if you think my Christian free will, live and let live philosophy is draconian, you are just gonna love Sharia Law”

    You must be making a joke. Live and let live? You have just spent the whole page bitching about contraception and telling me that the best way to stop teen pregnancy is to demonise those who engage in premarital sex.

    The cognitive dissonance displayed is so astounding I can only assume you are kidding.

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