Thursday, April 17, 2008

Hobby Horses Can Blind to Greater Needs

Dallas investor and political activist Trammell Crow looks at the potential catastrophe of the rise of Islamic radicalism in Pakistan and arrives at the need of the day: spend more on family planning.

Of all of the needs of Pakistan, I am not sure that would even be in the top 1,000. Certain types of ideological pundits continue to try to make the connection between poverty and terrorism, even though in real life that connection is tenuous, at best. Besides, there is a significant chicken and egg issue here. Reduction in birth rates tend to result from improving economies and medical care (when parents are sure they're children will survive childhood, they tend to produce fewer of them), not from westerners hectoring them on how many kids they should have.

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