Wingnut: "Crushing Student Loan Debt" Doubles as Good Birth Control

Paying for babies isn't just a seedy black market adoption scheme anymore. It was one of the solutions suggested to boost the U.S. birth rate among college student loan-strapped couples at a recent Family Research Council policy lecture.

Allan Carlson proposes paying up to $5,000 per baby born, or one-quarter of each parents' outstanding loan balances, to reduce the financial burden he claims is preventing debt-laden young married couples from starting families.

Carlson isn't some benevolent socialist from a former eastern bloc nation. He's the president of the conservative Howard Center for Family, Religion and Society that operates the right wing World Congress of Families.

According to Carlson, adoptions would also qualify, but like births, would be capped at a maximum of four children — twice the current average birth rate for U.S. women. That could net recent graduates $40,000 in total loan forgiveness from the federal government.

It's unclear if men and women placing their children up for adoption would also be eligible for the natal discount. And curiously, he never addresses single parenthood and loan assistance but that probably doesn't square with the moral rectitude of what he refers to as "responsible homes."

Carlson has been shopping his jaw-dropping idea since at least 2004 with little to show for it. But with unemployment rates for recent graduates topping 10.6 percent in Sept. and college seniors' average debt loads rising to $23,200, the Family Research Council snagged the politically volatile situation to push its stock ultra-conservative beliefs.

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. AlterNet’s journalists work tirelessly to counter the traditional corporate media narrative. We’re here seven days a week, 365 days a year. And we’re proud to say that we’ve been bringing you the real, unfiltered news for 20 years—longer than any other progressive news site on the Internet.

It’s through the generosity of our supporters that we’re able to share with you all the underreported news you need to know. Independent journalism is increasingly imperiled; ads alone can’t pay our bills. AlterNet counts on readers like you to support our coverage. Did you enjoy content from David Cay Johnston, Common Dreams, Raw Story and Robert Reich? Opinion from Salon and Jim Hightower? Analysis by The Conversation? Then join the hundreds of readers who have supported AlterNet this year.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure AlterNet remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to AlterNet, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.