Tuesday Trifles

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The sterile environmentalists. One of the top ten short (under 250 words) blog posts of the year.

Op-ed of the day: Families are good for cities and cities better be good to families. Excerpt:

Married people with children tend to be both successful and motivated, precisely the people who make economies go. They are twice as likely to be in the top 20% of income earners, according to the Census, and their incomes have been rising considerably faster than the national average.

Indeed, if you talk with recruiters and developers in the nation’s fastest growing regions, you find that the critical ability to lure skilled workers, long term, lies not with bright lights and nightclubs, but with ample economic opportunities, affordable housing and family friendly communities not too distant from work. . . .

There is a basic truth about the geography of young, educated people. They may first migrate to cities like New York, Los Angeles, Boston or San Francisco. But they tend to flee when they enter their child-rearing years. Family-friendly metropolitan regions have seen the biggest net gains of professionals, largely because they not only attract workers, but they also retain them through their 30s and 40s.

Advocates of the brew-latté-and-they-will-come approach often point to greater Portland, Ore., which has experienced consistent net gains of educated workers, including families. Yet most of that migration–as well as at least three quarters of the region’s population and job growth–has been not to the increasingly childless city, but to the suburban periphery. This pattern holds true in virtually every major urban region.

Contrary to popular belief, moreover, the family is far from the brink of extinction. Most Americans, notes the Pew Research Center, still regard marriage as the ideal state. Upwards of 80% still marry, and the vast majority end up having children. Brookings demographer Bill Frey notes that the number of married couples with children has actually been on the rise after decades of decline.


One-of-a-kind Christmas present:


No GKC fan should be without it during the holidays.

I don’t know much (alright, I know nothing) about junior high school and high school Catholic textbooks, but a TDE reader recommends books from the Catholic Schools Textbook Project. If anyone knows anything about these books, please let me know. I’m thinking about buying them to use with my older children (I make them attend summer school religion lessons; I’m the teacher . . . and, yes, a sadist).

Odd-but-true: “A Chinese man is suing for divorce after discovering that he is the father of only one of his twins. . . . Doctors explain that it’s quite rare, but possible.”