Debate on having children

Danyl at blogs in response:

But the point here is that having a couple of children shouldn’t be a ‘bad personal choice’ for everyone not earning a high income. 

It’s not a couple of children. I don’t disagree that a couple of children shouldn’t be a bad personal choice. This was four children though. One from a previous relationship, and three from this one. I stand by my view that if your household income is $42,000 a year, then it is not a good time to have a fourth child.

This used to be a country in which a family could be comfortably supported on a single, average income.

$42,000 a year is below the average personal income (for a FT employee) and well below the average household income for a couple. And four children is twice as much as two children.

That’s because our median wages remain stagnant while our living costs continue to rise.

Untrue. Our median after tax wage has increased in real terms.

Choosing your family size to meet your budget is nothing new. It is what the vast majority of couples do. Many well off couples decide to say limit their family to two or three kids, as a third or fourth kid would be too expensive.

I have a lot of sympathy for families with children, who fall on hard times, say with one or both parents losing their job. That is why we have a multi-billion dollar state with welfare benefits and Working for Families.

But if a family is already finding it tough to make ends meet, and chooses to have further children, then I have less sympathy.

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