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Forget the easy categories of the New York Times being liberal or conservative.

Look at how the New York Times has for around the last decade, covered in their reporting and the opinions they chose to promote, family policy both in the United States and abroad.

Their reporting on family planning policy – what it was and what it should be – almost uniformly falls into the left side of this divide in the image below, rather than the right. They routinely backed Trump’s family policy – one based on economic growth rather that birth and developmental equity one that undercuts human rights and democracy based on a handful of clear metrics. They backed systems that fundamentally created consumers and workers for shopping malls, not influential citizens for town halls. 

They did so even though the human rights regime requires policies on the right, below.


Extreme wealth like that of the Trump family accumulated after 1948 – when the international human rights regime was solidified – was made at deadly cost to the world’s most vulnerable because world leaders evaded using the first human rights, children’s rights connected to a healthy and natural environment, as the fundamental standard for political legitimacy and cost/benefit analysis. Instead,  under pressure from elites, they used an unsustainable system of growth that exploited children’s birth positionality (especially their nationality), one now likely to kill hundreds of millions of those least responsible for the crisis.

The New York Times routinely promotes that Trumpian growth policy – family policy based on quantity over quality. They did so to evade wealth transfers children’s rights entitle, to privilege their own children while creating a worker class that could absorb emissions and other costs, to lock in top down and racist systems of coercive power over bottom up justice, and to benefit from unsustainable and now deadly growth-based investments. They benefitted from the illusion of representative government that was in fact becoming just centralized coercive power, in order to build the wealth and control the Trump family is now abusing, without paying the actual costs of its equity, and in the process threatening global security. This is not about population as much as power relations, and not about growth as much as inequity, understood as an equal and influential role in determining the rules – formal and informal – one has to live under.

This now means they – the disenfranchised – will suffer the brunt of a crisis for which they were least responsible, including violations of their right to have even one child in healthy and safe conditions. And because of basic vote dilutionvoter suppression, and other factors, they will be unable to use democratic processes to protect themselves, and may rationally choose other measures. And in the face of all of this, many governments driven by industry are paying women to have more children with no easy safeguards like “survive and thrive” baby bonds in place, while wealthy families and foundations reliant on growth fund charities engaged in distractivism. 

The idea that there is such a thing as legitimate governance that does not start with children’s rights is called the #childscamA move by a handful of wealthy white men in 1968 to elevate their children over others by ensuring to down systems of power without bottom up justice. They used the institutions of governance to assign themselves and others property rights without legitimating those institutions. They got the benefit without covering the costs.

The New York Times has never seriously covered the simple fact that all children deserve a fair start in life, understood as the capacity to control the influence others have over them.



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