“Sexual Harassment Abuse: When Will It End?” Guest Post (David Essel)

Guest Post by David Essel”  “Sexual Harassment Abuse: When Will It End?”

How come people in positions of power, both men and women, haven’t become more actively engaged to stomp out sexual harassment and sexual abuse before now?

Number one best-selling author, counselor, life coach and radio host David Essel has been helping women in particular heal from sexual harassment and sexual abuse for the past 28 years, and yet even he has not seen the attention given to it right now.

“It seems like we finally have reached a tipping point. The point in life and society where individuals are saying enough is enough. I applaud Everywoman, every man, who has decided to take a stance against sexual harassment and sexual abuse.

But is it enough? When the president of United States, and leading power figures in the world of movies and television shows, as well as political talk show hosts are finally called out… Will this be what it takes in order to heal and move forward in life, to create a society where women feel safer?

In family counseling, just like in the world of business, we say everything is top down. And by that we mean that whenever there are problems in society especially when it comes to sexual harassment and sexual abuse, it starts from the top and trickles down. What does that mean? Well let’s look at the presidency.  Donald Trump bragged about his escapades with women before becoming president. That’s as high  in society as we can get.

And the family is no different. The core family. Which is where my work has been for the past 28 years. Whenever I work with someone who has sexual challenges, either they are overly engaged in sexual activities, or they completely have shut down sexually, we always look back to the patriarch or the matriarch of the family for clues as to why their child, a son or daughter, is facing sexual dysfunction.

I’ve worked with countless of women in their 40s, 50s and 60s who have suffered their whole life from sexual dysfunction, only to find out that it started with their father. Or their brother. Or their cousin, a male cousin who took advantage of them during something as innocent and simple seemingly as hide and go seek.

And when they finally open up to me in our sessions, which can often take 2 to 3 months of counseling sessions before they feel safe enough to open up about their childhood tragedies to a male, there’s a trail of distraction they left behind them. And the number one person destroyed? Themselves.

I worked with one young lady who was sexually abused by her father from the age of 11 until 21. That’s right age 21. She felt incredible shame, guilt, in saying no to her fathers advances even when she was in college. He had convinced her that she was dirty. She accepted it. And after 12 months of working together she finally rose up and shared her horrific story with her mother, Who dismissed it. Seriously once again damaging her daughters self-esteem.

But she didn’t give up. As we worked together she became stronger and stronger and stronger until she finally approached both her mother and father together and blew the door wide open.

Her strength was enormous. She shattered the family secret. And in doing so, protected generations down the road from having to go through the same abuse from another family member. She decided not to visit her parents in their house any longer, but rather stayed in hotels when she went home. The message was given. And on his deathbed, her father apologize profusely with tears running down his face as his life ended.

She is a born-again woman. Filled with strength and fortitude, and has use this to help others in life as well. She has encouraged me to share her story, over and over again, with some of my clients that are as young as 12 years of age who have been sexually molested. Her story, has given them strength as well.

How about my interviews with Olympic judo gold medalist Kayla Harrison, who was sexually abused by her judo coach from the ages of 12 to 16. In my interviews with her she said it was one of the hardest things to do at that young of an age, was to point her coach out for what he had done. But she is at peace, and has become an incredible role model for young women in athletics everywhere.

Recently, I started working with a woman in her 40s, that openly shared her extreme sexual dysfunction that was manifested through promiscuity her entire adult life. When we looked at the core issue, her brother had sexually molested her for four years as a little girl, and had threatened her with harm if she said anything to anyone.

After our work together that lasted almost 12 months, she healed, and for the first time in her life became involved with someone who is healthy. A man who could listen to her past story, without judging her, accepting her as she is today… A powerful, confident, healed woman. Her shame and guilt gone, her desire to be free and do the work necessary has allowed her to become a role model in her community as well.

There are thousands of women who have come forward, and walked into the light of healing. It takes incredible strength. I hope that through all of the media attention that is now being given to the most prominent of names, that individuals from all walks of life will seek help, assurance, and assistance in  healing any type of sexual harassment and or abuse that they have experienced .

Number one. Ask for help. Whether you go to a woman’s shelter, a spiritual center or church, or to professional counselors, the time is now. Please don’t wait any longer.

Number two. Read about women like the clients I’ve mentioned above, who have broken through incredible amounts of shame and guilt to become free. As women read more about others who have healed, it will give them incentive to walk down the same path of healing as well.

I don’t believe that we can totally eradicate the dysfunction of sexual harassment and abuse from our society, but I do believe maybe for the first time in my 28 years as a professional, that we are on the brink of something big.

A tipping point. Let us all hold hands, men included, to expose the dysfunction in our country in order to heal it for good.”

For more for Information on David, visit his website www.davidessel.com

ABOUT:

David Essel, M. S., Counselor, author, life coach, is a number one best-selling author, counselor, master life coach, and international speaker whose mission is to positively affect 1 million people or more every day, regardless of their current circumstances. David’s work is also highly endorsed by the late Wayne Dyer, chicken soup for the soul’s Mark Victor Hansen, as well as many other celebrities and radio and television networks from around the United States of America. Celebrity Jenny McCarthy says, “David Essel is the new leader of the positive thinking movement”

Publicist note:

The news is filled with recent stories, as well as age old stories, about sexual harassment in the workplace. At home. College campuses. What will it take for it to end?

From Donald Trump, Bill O’Reilly and Harvey Weinstein(it gets worse with Ronan Farrow’s New Yorker story on HW’s “Army of spies“). The list goes on and on and on. And let’s not forget  Bill Cosby  (case ended in a mistrial). .

Women, with the “me too” symbol, are starting to stand strong in unification together. Is this the first time this has ever happened in the history of United States?

We wonder, why did it take so long

Ed. Note:

Here are a couple of factual stories about the Olympic judo gold case.  (1) New York Times, Campbell Robertson, Aug. 2, 2002. (2) ESPN Allison Glock, April 13, 2017

Sometimes accusers have been sued for “defamation,” as in this story on Huffington by Dominque Mosbergen, about Brett Ratner suing Melanie Kohler.  In some cases, women (or even male victims) may not have the resources to defend themselves against “frivolous” litigation.

The whole matter of Kevin Spacey and “House of Cards” brings up the subject of possible make victims and gay harassment, which was generally thought to be relatively infrequent.  Elahe Izadi has a new story in the Washington Post.

David Brooks has a relevant column today, “Lovers, prospectors, and predators“.  One could add that a lot of men, maybe most, become too lost with themselves to remain lovers when there is no more prospecting.

(Posted: Monday, November 6, 2017 at 4 PM EST)

 

 

ACA has shorter enrollment period this fall under Trump

A Facebook friend from Florida posted this advisory to everyone, about the reduction in the open enrollment period for the ACA to 45 days for 2017:

Here it goes:

“Congratulations, Americans!! https://www.facebook.com/images/emoji.php/v9/f4/1/16/1f60f.png😏

“The 2018 ACA (Affordable Care Act) enrollment period has been shortened to 45 days (Nov 1-Dec 15). Fortunately, your friends are posting this and using the word “congratulations” so it gets posted more frequently in Newsfeed by Facebook algorithms.

“Please copy and paste (don’t share) on your own timeline, if you want to help spread the word. Finally, if you don’t have coverage, get coverage. Too many people have fought for the ACA for you to be uninsured in America.

“Congratulationscongratulationscongratulationshttps://www.facebook.com/images/emoji.php/v9/f8c/1/16/1f389.png🎉 https://www.facebook.com/images/emoji.php/v9/f19/1/16/1f37e.png🍾

“Please get enrolled, we all deserve care.”

The particular friend probably is not in any dire straits, and I don’t know whether Facebook thinks it’s OK to just copy posts as if they were original with metatag keywords like “Congratulations”.  (I think of “Greetings” for the draft, previous post). So I rewrote it and added a link of my own from Health Affairs, here.

Sarah Kiff of Vox shows and tells why our “free market” (sic) healthcare prices are so high, along with this cardstack explainer.

(Posted: Wednesday, October 25, 2017 at 2 PM EDT)

 

Trump’s travel ban 3.0 falls flat in court; why “lawless government” argument doesn’t work

Trump’s latest travel bans were struck down again last week.  In Hawaii, the decision was reported Oct. 17 with this copy of the opinion from the ACLU.  Ditto recently in Maryland.

The Hawaii judge actually cited a post by Cato’s Alex Nowrasteh noting that there have been no fatalities in the US from immigrants or travelers from those countries.  Cato had also provided an Amicus brief to Hawaii.

David Bier has contributed a major op-ed to the Washington Post, “Why bother?” to the Washington Post, here.   I think his most important argument is that visitors from countries with weak governments or weak security still bear the burden of proof when trying to enter that their purposes for a visit are legitimate.  In individual cases, some people may be able to prove legitimacy.  The overall statistical chances are that many will not.  In many cases, legitimacy would have to do with known family connections in the U.S.

There are good examples of this reasoning.  For example, in the Minneapolis area, there is a well established Somali community, which was never controversial, even after 9/11 (although there have been a few cases of attempted youth recruitment in more recent years in that area).

I’ll note that in my own information technology career, which started in 1971, I often encountered people from India and Pakistan, who dressed and behaved like ordinary Americans and simply never got into issues of religion at work (this was particularly true in the 1980s in Dallas). A major software bridge for an insurance company in Minneapolis that I worked for through Y2K and into the 9/11 period was coded entirely by a C++ (object oriented) and server technology guru from Pakistan who ran his own contracting company of advanced internals coding projects for corporate infrastructure.  He often hosted social events for other techies and no one ever thought anything of his religion.

(Posted: Monday, October 23, 2017 at 1 PM EDT)

Some elements of the GOP go out of their way to marginalize LGBTQ people, and then fail to address infrastructure and health care with real policy

I’ve had a running debate on Facebook Messenger with a particular friend in northern Virginia’s LGBT leadership, and he asked that his name not be reproduced because be feared (however facetiously) the “alt-right”.

I have said to him that I resist being drawn into specific initiatives sponsored generally by the political Left on narrow issues mostly having to do with discrimination (however “systematic” the “oppression”) against (members of) self-defined groups.  Likewise, right now at least, I don’t raise money under my own name (like with GoFundMe) for “other people’s causes” however compelling (I don’t ask people to give for the Houston flood, except maybe here in this post; I simply do it myself.)  That could even change in the future with certain circumstances.  I’ve said I want to focus on civilization-threatening problems like North Korea, nuclear weapons, power grid security.  I also want to focus on subtle free-speech (and gatekeeper resistance) problems, like downstream liability and implicit content. I’ve said that “we” have bigger problems than bathroom bills.  (As I type this, I hear on CNN that North Korea claims now to have miniaturized ICBM-mountable hydrogen bombs, not “just” Hiroshima-like atomic bombs.  And we have Trump with the nuclear suitcase.)

My friend (whom I see as pretty centrist between Left and Right, more or less with Hillary Clinton’s positions on most things, much more conservative than Sanders or even Obama) agrees that the GOP should focus on actually fixing healthcare, securing infrastructure security and solving the problems with refugees, and with enemies like ISIS and North Korea  — and facing the responsibility to future generations on climate change.  He says it is the GOP that looks for scapegoats (right now, transgender people) with bathroom bills or pseudo-religious freedom bills. I agree.  And some parts of the alt-right make scapegoats of all immigrants, and are more aggressive in a desire to subjugate non-white people than I would have believed.  This puts pressure on me to come back to focus on defending “oppressed groups” rather than paying attention to existential problems that can affect us all.  In my situation (benefiting from inheritance and trying to downsize myself out of a house partly for “political” reasons), it gets harder to work on what I want than on what others would demand of me.  It’s harder to stay away from unwelcome personal entanglements.

Here are a few of his comments:

“Focusing on infrastructure like FDR did during the Great Depression, of that scale, is definitely the winning ticket. The real problem is the GOP in Congress doesn’t want to spend money, especially on big national projects. However, they will if it is funneled through the largely Republican controlled states. So the grid and space projects all have to be designed as pork spending to states with only a small national office to coordinate, if that. Moreover, the money has to go to key swing states.

“I’m getting tired of this extreme bipolar discord manufactured by billionaires who spend their money on this negative crap rather than helping society in productive ways. None of this was in the news (Page 1) until Trump began dangling red meat at crowds to capitalize off fringe. Even the labels of left and right are becoming meaningless. Whatever happened to a sense of decency? It’s been replaced by circus clown.

“I look at another way. The bathroom bills are pushed and funded by right wingers who make it a priority over everything else. The LGBTQ-activist aren’t to blame for reacting. The blame lies squarely with the well-funded right that wants to obliterate all the gays off the face of the earth. And any progress made in the last 20 years. Why pinpoint blame people who fight against them for human rights and social justice. It makes no sense to me. You are right however, that the priorities of the nation need to be focused on things like infrastructure and beefing up national defense.”

Here are a few of his best links:

Americans United for Separation of Church and State: “The Religious Right’s War Against LGBT Americans

I think there is more to say here.  People “on the right” see meaning in forcing others to comply with the same moral rules they think they should follow; that’s their answer to “inequality”.  They also have to deal with the logically existential idea of personal “rightsizing”.

Emily Crockett, “How the Left can stop arguing and beat Trump”.

James Hohmann “The Daily 202: False moral equivalency is not a bug of Trumpism; it is a main feature”.

George Michael’s “The Rise of the Alt-Right and the Politics of Polarization in America”.

It strikes me that the alt-right uses identity politics and even “intersectionality” much as does the radical Left.  The groups are different.  But the exploitation of “relative deprivation” (and the personal undeservedness of others) is the same, even if the Right seems to have much less justification in history.

(Posted: Saturday, September 2, 2017, at 9 PM EDT)

No Substance to Be Found in Senator Harris’s Federal Bail Reform Legislation

NO SUBSTANCE TO BE FOUND IN SENATOR HARRIS’S FEDERAL BAIL REFORM LEGISLATION By Jeffrey J. Clayton, Executive Director, American Bail Coalition   (Guest Post)

First-term U.S. Senator Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) seems intent on making a name for herself. She has attempted to portray herself as the champion of bail reform by co-authoring a bill with Rand Paul (R-Ky.) to remake the system of wholesale incarceration of inmates being held in jail. What she has actually succeeded in doing is showing the public that she is nothing more than just another self-serving hack, like so many who have preceded her in Washington. There is no question that bail reform is needed in this country. Fortunately, there are numerous meaningful conversations taking place in many quarters with law makers and others who truly want to improve our system of criminal justice.

However, Harris’ recent actions along with her past history reveal that she has no true grasp of bail reform, much less a commitment to enacting genuine change. Instead, the public has now been treated to her making a grand splash by unfurling a bill that is nothing short of ridiculous. Harris and Paul’s bill is being touted as a bi-partisan plan to fix the problem of hordes of people sitting in jail as they await trial. It proposes to provide $15 million to U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions for a program for which he has voiced no support whatsoever. That amount of money is miniscule and beyond insufficient to fund anything of substance. Moreover, Harris whiffed on a couple of other points. Her plan calls for states to report on their progress and to ensure that their risk assessment criteria are non-discriminatory. Unfortunately, the Bureau of Justice Statistics no longer creates the reports she is demanding. In fact, that very data has already shown that contrary to her stated claims, money bail really does work to guarantee appearance in court and protect public safety. Further, Harris specified $10 million to be expended over the next three years to enact additional reforms. These reforms are already notated in the existing federal budget – but at an amount fifty to 100 times greater than the tiny amount she delusionally put forward. Taken as a whole, this piece of legislation is a joke and offensive to anyone who has ever been involved in the very serious matter of bail reform. Whether one wants to abolish monetary conditions of bail altogether or believes the system is just fine the way it is, it is painfully obvious that it is nothing more than a pathetic and embarrassing effort at grandstanding. Because it has virtually a zero chance of actually accomplishing its stated goals, the true reasons for its existence are painfully clear: keep the flow of donations coming in, while putting Harris and Paul’s names in the news. Perhaps most disturbing about the bill is Harris’ own history concerning the issue of bail. While serving as California’s Attorney General, she held contradictory positions on two virtually identical cases which dealt directly with whether or not bail in the state was legal. She chose not to defend the constitutionality of California law in the case of Buffin v. San Francisco, in which it was argued that the state discriminated on the basis of economic status or the use of a set bail schedule. But she took the opposite position in the case of Welchen v. Harris, writing in support of California’s laws. The foundation for both cases lay in the contention that the bail system created “wealth-based detention” and was, therefore, unconstitutional. In fact, Harris did next to nothing in her role as Attorney General of California to fix the highest bail schedules in the nation or otherwise repair a dysfunctional bail market that was the root of the problem to begin with. An examination of Harris’s home state illustrates exactly why her U.S. Senate bill is nothing more than fluff. California Senate Bill 10 calls for the enactment of many of the same laws Harris is pushing for the entire nation. However, no less a source than the Los Angeles Times said its implementation would cost “hundreds of millions of dollars” across a number of categories — and analysts working in the state legislature agree with this determination. It should be pointed out that this is only for California. When you realize we’re talking about bail reform for the entire country, one quickly comes to the conclusion that this will likely cost billions of dollars.

Suddenly, the utter insanity of the paltry $15 million indicated in Harris’ bill becomes crystal clear. Lest one think that it is the notion of bail reform that is under attack, it should be mentioned that Representative Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) has a bill of his own that addresses these same issues. However, Lieu’s bill is a very well-thought-out piece of legislation. Whether or not one supports what he proposes, it certainly merits consideration – in stark contrast to Harris’ effort. Perhaps most outrageously, Harris exhumes the terrible case of Kalief Browder. She claims that he is exactly the type of individual her legislation would aid. Browder was trapped in jail because he could not post bail and was so damaged from the experience that he subsequently committed suicide after he was freed. Numerous media accounts reported that Browder was unable to raise the money to be released. However, in actuality, he was on a probation hold for three years as a juvenile, making him ineligible for bail because of a prior conviction. It is completely unrealistic to believe that his family would not have been able to raise the amount of his premium — $300 total – if he had been able to legitimately meet the standards for bail. No matter how Harris wants to spin it, her ill-conceived legislation would have had absolutely no effect on the actual problems that caused Browder to be held needlessly. Yet she now exploits his tragic death to push for the expansion of preventative detention without the option of bail, wasting federal funds in the process. Ironically, it is this very type of system that led to Browder being stuck in jail, which resulted in his ultimate demise. Kamala Harris had the opportunity to effect genuine change in the bail system as California Attorney General, but did nothing but meekly play both sides of the issue. Citizens who believe her to now be the vanguard of the national bail reform movement should think again. Her efforts to convince her fellow U.S. senators to fork over $15 million to create “economic justice” is an insult to anyone who truly cares about making changes that will actually work.

***

About Jeffrey Clayton, Executive Director of the American Bail Coalition: Jeff Clayton joined the American Bail Coalition as Policy Director in May 2015. He has worked in various capacities as a public policy and government relations professional for fifteen years, and also as licensed attorney for the past twelve years. Most recently, he worked as the General Counsel for the Professional Bail Agents of Colorado, in addition to serving other clients in legal, legislative, and policy matters. Jeff spent six years in government service, representing the Colorado State Courts and Probation Department, the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment, and the United States Secretary of Transportation. He is also a prior Presidential Management Fellow and Finalist for the U.S. Supreme Court fellows program. Mr. Clayton holds a B.B.A. from Baylor University, a M.S. (Public Policy) from the University of Rochester, N.Y., and a J.D. from the Sturm College of Law, University of Denver

(Posted: Wednesday, Aug. 30, 2017 at 8:30 PM EDT)

Lawsuit threatened by Texas and other red states could mean DACA ends with a whimper; also, marriage and undocumented people

There has been concern and speculation of what might happen in Donald Trump gradually ends DACA, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals as implemented by the Obama Administration in June 2012.

David Bier of the Cato Institute has a detailed prospective analysis here, what he calls a “Timeline for Expiration”. The three components are (1) deferred priorities for removal, (2) deferred actual removal and (3) some protections of employment authorizations.

Bier quickly mentions Trump’s decision in January to continue DACA, but then presents the serious challenge implied by a letter to Jeff Sessions from the attorneys general of several red states (Texas, Alabama, Arkansas, Idaho, Kansas, Louisiana, Nebraska, Tennessee, and West Virginia) to sue if Trump does not terminate DACA by Labor Day.

Bier’s analysis is detailed, with many charts. I want to focus a moment on the employment authorization issue. Bier tends to suggest that (in various combinations of possibilities) for most DACA “children”, there won’t be changes, and that employers will have to accept employment authorization documents pretty much as they do today, well, probably. But the very idea of such a “threat” could matter to some communities. In the LGBTQ community, for example, that could lead to more calls for hosting and financial support, either through organizations or more focused kinds of sponsorships. This would compare to the current situation for asylum seekers, already discussed on this blog extensively.

I wanted to mention another possible controversy. Can undocumented immigrants get green cards by marrying American citizens or permanent legal residents? The answer seems to be, sometimes (Alllaw link1, link2). There was a change in 2017 involving a 601A Waiver that may help sometimes (link). There are problems with some legal sites on these matters because their articles don’t always carry dates.

A question like this has the potential to become important if people were pressured in their peer groups to consider marrying immigrants to help them. Yes, it is possible to imagine abuse of same-sex marriage in this regard, but I have not heard that this has really happened much.

(Posted: Thursday, August 17, 2017 at 9 PM EDT)

Lower-Income Children Raised in Counties With High Upward Mobility Display Fewer Behavioral Issues, Perform Better on Cognitive Tests

PRINCETON , N.J. (by B. Rose Kelly and Princeton University)—Children who grow up in urban counties with high upward mobility exhibit fewer behavioral problems and perform better on cognitive tests, according to a study led by Princeton University.

Children in these counties display fewer behavior problems at age 3 and show substantial gains in cognitive test scores between ages 3 and 9. Growing up in a county with higher intergenerational mobility reduces the gap between economically advantaged and disadvantaged children’s cognitive and behavioral outcomes by around 20 percent.

The study, published Aug. 14 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, provides further evidence that place, measured at the county level, has a significant influence over the economic prospects of children from low-income families.

“Broadly speaking, our findings suggest that the developmental processes through which place promotes upward mobility begin in childhood and depend on the extent to which communities enrich the cognitive and social-emotional skills of children from low-income families,” said contributing author Sara S. McLanahan, William S. Tod Professor of Sociology and Public Affairs at Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.

The study results are based on data from the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study, of which McLanahan, who is founding director of the Bendheim-Thoman Center for Research on Child Wellbeing, is a principal investigator. The study is a population-based birth-cohort study of children born in 20 large U.S. cities between 1998 and 2000.

The new research builds upon a series of papers by economist Raj Chetty of Stanford University and others who used income tax data to show that the economic prospects of children from low-income families depend on where they grow up. However, Chetty’s work does not explain why children growing up in some counties do better than others.

This question is what motivated McLanahan and her collaborators, which include lead author Louis Donnelly, Princeton University; Irv Garfinkel, Columbia University; Jeanne Brooks-Gunn, Columbia University; Brandon Wagner, Texas Tech University; and Sarah James, Princeton University.

For their analyses, the researchers looked at 4,226 children from 562 U.S. counties whose developmental outcomes were assessed at approximately ages 3, 5 and 9 years old. The researchers divided these children into low- and high-income groups based on household income at birth. Children from low-income families were born in households earning below the national median household income (mean of $18,282), while children from high-income families were born in families earning above the national median (mean of $73,762).

Behavioral problems — like aggression and rule-breaking — were assessed by parents and teachers using the Child Behavior Checklist, a report used in both research and clinical settings, along with the Social Skills Rating Scale, a system that evaluates social skills, problem behaviors and academic competence. Cognitive abilities were assessed through a series of vocabulary, reading comprehension and applied problems tests in the children’s homes. Both assessments were collected as part of the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study.

After analyzing the data, the researchers found that children from low-income families who grew up in counties with high upward mobility had fewer behavior problems and higher cognitive test scores when compared with children from counties with lower mobility. These differences were significant even after controlling for a large set of family characteristics, including parents’ race/ethnicity, education, intelligence, impulsivity and mental health.

Children who grow up in counties with higher intergenerational mobility show steady gains in test scores between ages 3 and 9, compared to those who grow up in counties with lower intergenerational mobility. These gains first appear at age 5 and accumulate over time, which is consistent with the argument that high-quality pre-K and elementary schools are an important part of what makes growing up in a high-mobility county beneficial, the researchers wrote.

The pattern for behavioral problems was somewhat different. For this outcome, the advantages associated with being raised in a county with high intergenerational mobility appear by age 3 and neither grow nor decline after that.

These two findings — early appearance and the lack of cumulate effects – do not point to specific community institutions that cause fewer behavioral problems. However, according to the authors, community factors that may account for these findings include programs that affect children directly, such as access to high-quality health care or preschool, or programs that affect children indirectly by reducing parents’ economic insecurity, like housing.

Importantly, for children from high-income families, growing up in a county with high intergenerational mobility is weakly associated with most developmental outcomes, which suggests that conditions favorable for disadvantaged children’s development do not come at the expense of advantaged children’s development.

The paper, “Geography of intergenerational mobility and child development,” was published in PNAS on Aug. 14.

Funding for this study was provided by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Funding for the Fragile Families Study was provided by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development grants R01HD36916, R01HD39135 and R01HD40421 and by a consortium of private foundations.

(Posted: Wednesday, August 16, 2017 at 3:30 PM as a guest post and press release Full credit:

B. Rose (Huber) Kelly
Communications Manager & Senior Writer
Princeton University
Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs
205 Robertson Hall, Princeton NJ, 08544)

 

Pictures: first is mine, 2010 visit to Princeton; second supplied by author of the Woodrow Wilson School

 

States get ranked by how they deal with underprivileged kids

I received an email this morning from Wallethub discussing the statistics about underprivileged children in the 50 states.   The information relates to August as Child Support Awareness Month.

The best link summarizing the findings is here, ranking the States by the proportion of underprivileged children.

The state with the worst record in this regard seems to be Mississippi (last visited by me in 2014). The District of Columbia (Washington) regarded as a state, comes out badly. The states that came out best seemed to be New Jersey and New Hampshire. In the table provided, having fewer points is better.

Some key statistics:

  • “Mississippi has the highest child food-insecurity rate, 26.3 percent, which is 2.8 times higher than in North Dakota, the state with the lowest at 9.4 percent.
  • Mississippi has the most infant deaths (per 1,000 live births), nine, which is 2.3 times more than in New Hampshire, the state with the fewest at four.
  • Alaska has the highest share of children in foster care, 1.41 percent, which is 5.6 times higher than in Virginia, the state with the lowest at 0.25 percent.
  • Mississippi has the highest share of children in households with incomes below poverty level in the past 12 months, 31.8 percent, which is 2.7 times higher than in New Hampshire, the state with the lowest at 11.8 percent.
  • Nevada has the highest share of uninsured children aged 0 to 17, 13.0 percent, which is 8.7 times higher than in Massachusetts, the state with the lowest at 1.5 percent.
  • Massachusetts has the highest share of maltreated children, 2.22 percent, which is 16 times higher than in Pennsylvania, the state with the lowest at 0.14 percent.

I’ve recently covered on this blog several topics that are particular significant to “freedom”, at least my own. Some of these include the downstream liability-Backpage issue (which also affects kids, above, indirectly at least), the net neutrality issue, immigration and hosting, and specifically, in the last couple of days, North Korea. It is not possible to cover the details of some of these matters every day on one blog, as the events break too fast. Yes, I’m very concerned about the general idea of “shared responsibility”, because (ironically) we all bear te consequences of things as individuals when the outside world knocks on the door with aggression or demands. I my own situation, I guess I am in some danger of winding up as a metaphorical Scarlet O’Hara (“Gone with the Wind”) and it’s hardly clear I have the personal resilience for it. Coercion matters, in a way that impacts making good choices and “personal responsibility”. Stay tuned.

(Posted: Wednesday, August 9, 2017 at 8 PM EDT)

Cato Institute analyzes Trump’s RAISE Act and debunks “myths”; National Review looks at the ironies of “legality”

The Cato Institute has shared with me two links about the RAISE Act today.  And (another) conservative periodical, National Review, wrote about the irony of wanting to reduce “legal” immigration.

As Cato explains, the RAISE Act is a bill introduced by Senators Tom Cotton (R-AR) and David Perdue (R-GA) that would reduce legal immigration by 50 percent. Its authors maintain that it would return immigration to “historical norms” but, Cato maintains, in a post by Dave Bier  with some charts and tables, this is inaccurate. Cato maintains that the immigration rate—which controls for the size of the U.S. population—was already 28 percent below the historical average. The RAISE Act would reduce the immigration rate to one-third of the historic average over time and about one-eleventh of the historic highs.

Alex Nowrasteh has a post in which he explains (with a large volume of charts and tables) why the senators’ various other arguments are dubious. The Senators (as does President Trump) claim it would create a “skills-based immigration system,” but the bill doesn’t actually increase employment-based immigration at all. The United States already ranks low among developed nations in terms of total per-capita immigration and skills-based immigration. Alex’s article walks Congress and other readers the through numerical research and studies on the economics of immigration restriction and shows that decreasing the flow of immigrants does not actually increase wages for native-born workers.

Nowrasteh has also posted a higher-level discussion of how to meet alt-right anti-immigration arguments here.

Dave Bier has a column in the New York Times (Aug. 4) “Ignorant Immigration Reform” here.

My basic reaction is this: My first impression is that skills-based immigration is separate from the asylum and refugee issue.  The whole idea of private sponsorship and the potential legal responsibilities of sponsors needs systematic attention.  I think the I864 is just a little piece of this when a family member wants a visa.

Tech companies (including Facebook with explicit statements by Mark Zuckerberg) have, in the past, encouraged the increase in visas for those with very specific job skills.  Throughout my own IT career, I often worked with immigrants from India and Pakistan especially and never thought anything of it.

Charles Cooke has a piece in National Review today, in a piece called “the Corner”, “But I thought you were only against illegal immigration.” Cooke makes a comparison to the Canada system.

I have an earlier post today on a legacy blog, on the “cosmopolitan bias” argument at the White House press conference, here.  It seems especially noteworthy to me that Trump’s “point-based” competitive system for a strictly limited number of green cards would probably exclude older workers with skills.

Other commentators have noticed that economic growth in the US cannot take place without maintaining the current level of immigration of people ready to work.  Immigration also helps maintain the birth rate and population replacement at a stable level, since well-off people born here tend to have fewer children.

It really does seem that Trump’s idea of economic growth slides toward autarky.  The debate will continue.

(Posted: Wednesday, Aug. 2, 2017 at 9 PM EDT)

Guest post on countries that can go to nearly 100% renewable energy

While Donald Trump, with “America First”, seems eager to give fossil fuels a longer lease on life, at least to help out coal miners in his voter base, it seems that some smaller countries are doing well in going to nearly 100% renewable energy.

Here follows a guest post on the topic:  It’s original title is “7 Countries that Said ‘Adios’ to Fossil Fuels & Run 100% on Clean Energy.” It is authored by “We Love Costa Rica”.  I’ll add that Costa Rica was a popular destination by the Dallas Sierra Club when I lived in Dallas in the 1980s.

“You might not have heard of countries like Bonaire or Tokelau before. They are really small and they only have a few inhabitants. Despite this, they were able to do something many other major countries have not done – remove fossil fuels and be totally dependent on renewable energy sources.

“In a lot of countries, there are still debates going on regarding global warming and the real reason why it exists. For these small countries, it is no longer up for debate. They have done something to change their energy source to make it cleaner.

“”They know that when disaster strikes, they will be the biggest victims. They understand the impact of global warming as they are the first people to reap the damages if floods and typhoons become more violent than before.

“Bigger countries don’t care for now as they can’t feel the immediate impact. If they will see the heavier impacts of global warming, they will surely change their tone. Just look at China. They have allowed big manufacturing companies to take over and do whatever they want.

“As a result, there is rising level of pollution in major cities. They have decided to do something about it when the problem has gone out of control. In short, these smaller countries are wiser to not wait for the damages to happen before doing something.

“Get to know these countries more through the infographic below. It lists the countries that have succeeded in eliminating fossil fuels from their system.”

7 Countries that Said 'Adios' to Fossil Fuels & Run 100% on Clean Energy

(Posted: Thursday, April 6, 2017 at 11 PM EDT)