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Americans Alone

For the first time in American statistical history, the majority of American adults are single. 124 million or 50.2% of Americans are single. Some will get married, but increasing numbers never will.

 Demographically a population of single adults means the death of the Republican Party. It eliminates the possibility of libertarian and fiscally conservative policies. It leads inevitably to the welfare state.

Single people are less likely to have a support system that keeps them from becoming a public charge. Children born to single parents perform poorly in school and are more likely to engage in criminal behavior. A nation of single people will inevitably become a welfare state and a police state.

The statistics have always been known and the conclusions to be drawn from them are inescapable.

A lot of attention is being paid to the political consequences of the nation’s changing racial demographics, but it’s not a coincidence that the racial group that Republicans perform worst with is also the least likely to be married. While there are other factors in the mix, Republicans do better with married than unmarried black people.

The same is true of most other racial groups.

The latest Reuters poll shows that 36% of married Hispanics are planning to vote for a Democratic candidate in the upcoming midterm election and 28% are planning to vote for a Republican candidate. Among unmarried Hispanics, those numbers change to 42% Democratic and %15 Republican.

If Republicans want to start getting serious about the Hispanic vote, they might want to spend less time muttering about amnesty and more time thinking about where their strength with married voters lies.

Married white voters lean toward a Republican candidate by 43% to 24%. Among single white voters, Democrats lead 34% to 26%. There are other factors that affect these numbers such as age, race, sexual orientation and religious affiliation. Growing minority demographics have certainly helped make single Americans a statistical majority, but it’s dangerous to ignore the bigger picture of the post-family demographic trend.

If Republicans insist on running against the nanny state, they will have to replace it with something. That something was traditionally the family. Take away the family and something else has to fill its place.

In the West, government has become the new family. The state is father and occasionally mother. The nanny state is literally a nanny. It may be hated, but it is also needed.

That is why married whites oppose ObamaCare 65% to 34% while single whites also oppose it, but by a narrower margin of 53% to 47%.

ObamaCare’s support base among whites is highest among single white men and women. (Despite Julia and Sandra Fluke, the latest poll numbers show that young single white women oppose ObamaCare by a higher margin than young single white men. Pajama Boy with his hot cocoa is more likely to be a fervent proponent of ObamaCare than Julia. But the margins for both sexes remain narrow.)

It’s unrealistic to expect people to vote against their short term interests. Without family, the individual is vulnerable. A single bad day can leave him homeless and hungry. While the system of social welfare actually intensifies the overall economic conditions that are likely lead to such a state of vulnerability, those who are caught in that cycle will choose to protect themselves from the consequences in the short term without considering the long term causation cost to themselves and everyone else.

That was the logic behind ObamaCare. It’s the logic behind the entire spending spree of the nanny state.

If Republicans are going to start winning based on something other than the public’s frustration with Obama, they will have to address this reality. Republicans have treated family as a reference point, like the United States or the dollar, a verity that would always be there, a word that they could reference to show their singular virtue without having to meaningfully assess and address what was wrong with it.

The American vision of limited government depended on a stable society that could fend for itself. The progressives originally gained power from the collapse of large economic institutions which they used to prove that their intervention was needed. They have gained even more power from the collapse of social institutions.

Without an underlying network of families maintaining a working society, the nanny state grows. And it doesn’t limit its attentions to those who seek it out. Small scale solutions are made possible by the integrity of small institutions. Without the order created by the small institution of the family, the order that teaches children right from wrong, that cares for its elderly parents and supports members of the family, the only alternative becomes the large scale solution of the totalitarian state and its bureaucracy.

Republicans cannot campaign on policies that assume that the family is the dominant institution once it no longer is. If they do not place a fiscally conservative agenda within the larger context of restoring the family, they will become the advocates of policies that hardly anyone except their donor base supports.

Three choices lie ahead.

The Republican Party can fight for the family. It can abandon fiscal conservatism and social conservatism in both word and deed to pursue its real program of trying to make big government work. Or it can look for alternative institutions that can replace both family and government.

Faith-based programs attempted to bypass the social disaster of the lost family without ceding the social territory to big government, but there is only so much that any entity outside the family can do. No amount of programs can fill the gap for a child or an adult. The family is an organic wraparound entity. Replacing it led to a Great Society in which a horde of social workers, teachers, psychologists, parole officers and sociologists struggled to fill the role of a mother and a father.

It doesn’t take a village to raise a child except in a failed state and no village can afford to hire an entire other village to raise its children. That, among other things, is what is bringing California to its knees.

Replacing the family, with or without government, is expensive and difficult. Republicans can and should champion private sector alternatives to government takeovers, faith-based or otherwise, but such an approach will only delay the inevitable. There really is no institutional replacement for the family.

The demographic shift taking place is critical because it will determine whether we have a big government or a small government. Republicans can either adapt to a post-family America by becoming the party of the welfare state or they can work toward an America that is once again centered around the institution of the family.


  1. Anonymous16/9/14

    Widespread acceptance of birth control was the beginning of the death of the institution of marriage and the family. It didn't take long to graduate to legal abortion, acceptance of homosexuality, no-fault divorce, co-habitation as normal, and no social stigma against illegitimate births.

    The rise of the welfare/Nanny State corresponded with the acceptance of each of the above. As individuals moved away from long term commitments and women were convinced getting married and having children was a sin against womanhood, our society decided the institution of marriage was not sacred, that parental responsibility for raising children ought to be transferred to the "experts", and a hedonistic, materialistic, self-centered lifestyle was the way to happiness.

    The social, economic, and psychological costs of destruction of the family don't seem to bother many people. I don't foresee a return to tradition as it doesn't have a benefit to the lifestyles of most adults these days.


  2. Anonymous16/9/14

    "...the only alternative becomes the large scale solution of the totalitarian state and its bureaucracy."

    That one clause crystallized the essential problem for me. Any government given any power will, sooner or later, become the Nazi or Stalinist state unless power is torn away from it. There is no way to reason our way out of this mess. Only another 1776 will gain Americans another hundred or so years of true freedom.


  3. Sorry for a long post. As I travel to Israel and Europe for business, you do observe certain things. In Israel you see families everywhere, children everywhere, playgrounds everywhere. Restaurants, sports games, the beach - everything seems to be a family activity. This is impossible not to notice. It feels like the US in the early sixties when I grew up. You only see this only in certain areas in the US now (my children did not live in a world like this) and even less so in Europe. It is not merely the political ramifications which strike you though. It is the impression of a healthy society. Israel to anyone who visits is simply a more vigorous place than the US or Europe. For all of its incredible pressures and problems,(and self-inflicted wounds too) and a physical infrastructure which is not up to an EU or US standard, it is Israel which gives the impression of wholesomeness and even strength. This certainly is because the population is young, gets married, has children, raises them and wants the next generation to come into being and do well. The US and EU model presents more than the problems of a country voting left, and worrying about pensions. It is the (strong word) perversion of the natural order of things. The whole country begins to seem senile.

  4. Anonymous16/9/14

    Both Parties need to change. It doesn't seem like either one has a relevant message anymore. Identifying as either 'liberal' or 'conservative' has become meaningless from the sheer weight of lies that are told by those who want to be elected. Neither description carries any cachet whatsoever, nor instills trust in the populace. Many of us have been fooled far too many times.
    Who would have thought that the day would come when an aging, lying elitist, with an impeached husband would be considered presidential material, especially by a Party that has been wholly defrauded by its' current leader ?
    Sad, just sad.


  5. fizziks16/9/14

    I'm fairly sure that families use more welfare and other government benefits than single people. Families use

  6. From your article, it seems that the future of America is Red China.

  7. Anonymous16/9/14

    What does it benefit an individual adult to gain the absolute freedom of his lifestyle choice and to lose his own soul?

    The destruction of the family began in earnest with the God is dead movement, long before birth control came along to speed it up.

  8. Anonymous16/9/14

    Sorry, Elaine, but you are dead wrong.

    White males began abandoning the family when they waged war on each other in the 19-teens. Read some American history...and European.

    The "flower of American youth" was held to vicious selection pressure in WWI--in the name of the US's new cadre of global bankers and their industrialists profiting big from the internecine conflicts of the increasingly degenerate European aristocracy. To be a healthy, strong young white man in the 19-teens meant going to war...haven't you heard of the "Lost Generation"?

    This was even worse in Europe. Look at this chart.


    These were the BEST of their genome, selected for precisely those traits, and leaving as a breeding pool the 4Fs, cowards, slackers, and homosexuals.

    Women did not undergo that selection pressure.

    Two generations later, this extinction event was repeated in the continuation of that conflict called for some reason WWII. Once again, millions of (mostly white) Europeans, selected out precisely for being strong, healthy, and willing to protect western civilization.

    Once again, women left behind to mop up. And then came Korea and Vietnam.

    So don't go blaming this all on "birth control." I am a woman who was raised in a place where I met not one male who had the qualities of the menfolk in my own family--strength, patriotism, support for family, value for marriage, self-restraint, intelligence, health. My father fought in WWII, served with decorated distinction, and survived; my grandfather was just a few years too old to have served in WWI. They were men unlike any I knew in most families.

    I had to move three times, finally landing in the Upper Midwest, to find an appropriate mating partner. And yes, as a young woman I had sex. Something in my psyche told me that even the unpromising mates I was surrounded with might be triggered into a higher state of male consciousness by love, sexual sharing, and the promise of family.

    They weren't. They wanted their sports networks, their shiny cars, their playboy and hippie philosophy, their porn, and their apartments that always looked like boys' bedrooms. I was married very briefly to a guy who seemed promising...but then he let me know that if I were attacked, he would not cover my back.

    It is going to take Western civilization a long time to breed its way back from the white genocide of the thirty-year world war of the 1900s.

  9. Anonymous16/9/14

    Gay marriage which has attacked the foundation of the traditional family is also a political problem for Republicans, which they have not recognized.

  10. Anonymous16/9/14

    It takes 2 incomes to support the broke family. Used to take 1 to support the non-broke family. Used to be pegged to gold.

  11. @anonymous woman

    Reading between the lines of your rant, it is obvious what spent worng, your ego was through the roof, you expected a perfect package of a man, but you did not have any intention of providing a perfect package of a woman. At least as far as a perfect (read ridiculously idealized version) version of a man would be concerned

    However, despite your overwheling arrogance, you were still flesh and blood, and so, rather than use your needs as a reason to break down your totally insane standards, you then turned around and justified sleeping with men who were good enough to be used and discarded, but not good enough to commit to in a nurturing way.

    I am guessing you are probably alone at this point, and instead of admitting your error and taking responsibility for any of the problem, you are still blaming men.

    Now here is the truth. The truth is your family should have grabbed you by the shoulders and shook you up. Then they should have gone out, found you several men to marry and said to you "Pick One.". Unfortunately they could not have realized just how much ego and fear you had in you, or how demented the society had become, and so they didn't.

    But if you keep this nonsense up, and continue blaming ANYONE aside from yourself for your unhappy life, you will be held to account one day for your arrogance. That I can promise you.

    Alternatively, you can finally grow up past yourself and be the sort of woman who can warn young women not to make her mistakes, there is something to that. It's not perfect, but better than nothing I say.

  12. Anonymous17/9/14

    Statistics show that divorce rates increase if couples have had:
    - multiple sexual partners prior to marriage
    - lived together before marriage
    - either spouse's parents were divorced
    - either spouse experienced parental addiction, adultery or abandonment, abuse, anger/conflict.
    - either spouse has an addiction, engages in abuse, addiction to substance such as drugs or alcohol or activity such as porn, gambling, adultery.

    These are all so wide-spread that it easily accounts for increase of singleness in America and the Western nations.

    Sibyl S.

  13. Anonymous17/9/14

    Forgot to mention parental suicide or disability - these also increase incidence of never marrying, mental health issues, divorce among next generation.

    Sibyl S.

  14. Anonymous17/9/14

    It is odd that more people aren't marrying, or co-habiting in some form, considering the economy.
    I recently saw an item about two elderly widows in NYC, one Black, one White,,previously unknown to each other, who lived as roommates and shared expenses, they also appeared to enjoy each other's company.
    It sure beats eating cat food by one's self.


  15. Anonymous17/9/14

    Love your blog, Daniel! Big fan. But I think "rebuild family" or accept a welfare state is a false alternative. America was founded on rugged individualists seeking a freer and better way of life. The rebulicans need to let go of the family values spiel and promote the rights of the individual to pursue their own interests and keep the fruits of their labor.

    As someone with no kids (now step kids), who was single most of my life but staunchly libertarian/Republican, I get very tired hearing about family values. I am an individual and I am proud I have never accepted government support. I want government out of the way. To win over the individuals, the Republicans need to stop preaching and to appeal to self-interests--a strong national defense, reduced taxes, better economy for businesses to thrive, more freedom and thus more prosperity. Socialism is a tired system that has failed wherever it has been tried.

    Republicans will alienate singles if they criticize that lifestyle. Individuals choose to be self-sufficient and successful, not families.

  16. LFMayor17/9/14

    End of the Republican party? Hmm. I'm thinking based upon their recent performance that this is righteous and justified. Now, if we can only figure out how to tied a Democrat to each one we can really begin to make something of this.

  17. Anonymous18/9/14

    Republicans? As in "the folks who want to turn the government "?

    How the hell is that a government function? The only things Republicans can do, like churches before all this, is to make dysfunctional families.

    They try to run "marriages", and don't know how to make cogent, coherrent bonds between partners. For them, marriage is a certificate, a sex permit, not the "spiritual" (in the true philosophic sense) bond is MUST be, first, foremost, and always.


  18. Anonymous18/9/14

    Sybil said: "Statistics show that divorce rates increase if couples have had:"

    Those are bogus stats from "push polls".


  19. Anonymous18/9/14

    This is a HUGE issue; one many republicans and even strong conservatives fail to understand. This isn't a policy issue, but a cultural issue. Tax credits, about the only pro-family policy the GOP is pushing, will have minimal effect on the culture.

    The sexual revolution is the root of family decay, and it won't be reversed until its run its full course. A large majority of Americans, of all political stripes, embrace its fundamental assumptions (sex does not make babies, and can always be controlled, men and women are completely interchangeable etc). Fertility rates will continue to decline, Out of Wedlock births (the word "illegitimate" is now illegitimate) will increase, and Marriage rates will decrease. Eventually, it will lead to a collapse of the civilization, but that may take a long while.

  20. I guess the anticipated "gay marriage" surge didn't affect stats as they might have hoped.


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