Last night I went to a debate on the question of whether a woman’s place is in the home. The debate content itself left me unfulfilled, but it did get me thinking about the need for children. If no one chose to have children and everyone retired, the real value of any retirement savings would drop to zero as the supply of goods and services on which to spend those funds also dropped to zero. The value of retirement savings is directly proportional to the productivity of the next generation. As the supply of good and services increase (because of population) the price goes down and the retirement dollars go further.
Having children is expensive but necessary. People who fail to have children but plan to retire are free riders on those that do have children. We as a society should tax the retirement savings of people who fail to have children at a substantially higher rate than those who do. The plan is simple. You can exit from Roth IRA’s and 401k’s tax free if you had children before your retirement. Your social security payments get taxed heavily if you failed to have children before you retired. We probably need a way of qualifying the quality of offspring but this would be a good start!