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For the results of a different survey, 10 years ago, asking similar questions:

Nearly half of respondents think it should be illegal for a 12 year old to play solo at a park. It's over 2/3 for a 9 year old. Those are tough numbers.

I'm glad this worked for you, but would your thought be to use unique signs for each kid if each had a multi-month signing phase?

In particular, I would not use this approach too extensively if your kid may want to be able to communicate with others who work with kids - teachers at daycare, speech pathologists, many nannies, other pediatric medical professionals etc. I do agree that straight ASL isn't quite right either. Our kid's speech pathologist uses a lot of signs but chooses for example to use "car" - a fairly easy sign - for all vehicles since bus, train, etc. are more abstract or complex. This approach has allowed our kid to communicate with a range of people over the relevant time period, not just our household.

I'm fairly surprised to read this, as I continue to be surprised by the number of my friends and acquaintances who have flown home with COVID despite having the means not to. Every flight I've taken since the pandemic started, I've taken the time to game plan what would happen if I or someone in my party were to test positive during the trip. Did you not do this? On the scale of the incomes you have posted on your blog previously, $2000 or so is not very much.

And from the JetBlue policy you linked to, I guess you bought Basic Blue fares?

It seems like you chose to be your own insurance policy and then decided not to pay out.

Several airlines, at least as of a few months ago, required me to check a box confirming that I had not tested positive for COVID in some recent amount of time, or had a fever. Is this no longer the case, or did you choose to check that box?

Maybe the risk numbers make sense here, but planes/airports are one of the hardest places to avoid to be able to participate in society normally and I am surprised by your choice given all the other posts in which you seem exceedingly concerned about not spreading COVID.

I think you are maybe also not thinking of the degrees of privacy people value. 

For example, I used to have a job where it was valuable to be able to present to new professional acquaintances as politically neutral or at least politically agendaless. I have a very Google-able name. And Google really likes Facebook results. Therefore I kept anything publicly available, including on Facebook, fairly neutral - no tags in public contra pictures, for example. My bar was, if someone were to see they were going to meet with me, search my name, and read whatever struck their interest for a few minutes, they wouldn't have significant information on my politics. 

That's a very different goal than keeping my information private from, say, the law.

I can't find it right now, but I distinctly remember you posting about BIDA having a similar "kids excluded" policy, I think back when under-5s couldn't be vaccinated. At the time, you said it was no/low cost, and someone in the comments pointed out that the cost was the entire cost of attending the dance. I didn't see an explicit revision to your thinking posted. Can you articulate your revised cost-benefit for under 2s, who can't do basic things like cover a cough or wash their hands after touching their mouth?

Possibly scarier: the federal government and national lab system has not identical, but very similar barriers.

Not wanting your kid to be at minimal age to start school is a totally valid counterargument. Perhaps there's a middle ground - prioritizing the spring for example. 

Had anyone I'd been discussing this with brought up this counterargument I would have had a very different takeaway from the conversation. The point I was trying to make was that even people who are thinking some about the economics of pregnancy and parenthood don't seem to be thinking about it very comprehensively in my experience. 

That said, IIRC from your blogs, 2 of your 3 kids have June-ish birthdays, so I take it your concern about being in the youngest quarter of the year wasn't something important enough to you to actively avoid.

| as you start looking for a house

We've been keeping our eye on houses in our area for several years. If the right one showed up on the market we would likely try to buy. I know people who have spent their entire careers in this state. Maybe it's not the most typical approach, but I don't expect there will be a concentrated 6 month period of "looking for a house" for us.

For a more concrete example, we nearly lost our housing last year on very short notice (<1 month), and so had to secure a new rental. Most rentals require income to be a certain percentage of the rent (often 300%). We would have ended up living in a hotel. 

The idea that you should in other circumstances be able to have while choosing to make lest rings as fairly naive and not based in reality to me.

I think means testing goes in a lot of different directions. You may qualify for housing assistance and your kid may qualify for more financial aid in college, and I don't know that either of those would be questioned. However, my understanding is that court-ordered child/spousal support works differently and is unlikely to be adjusted downward based on a decrease in income, especially in this scenario. 

On the other side of the coin, good luck buying a house.

I agree completely, and yet I am also very convinced that very few people enter parenthood having done rational economic calculations. 

As an example: 

(A) I've seen many folks TTC with an explicit intent to get the entire pregnancy + birth on one year's health insurance deductible, which I'd guess saves $7500 or so on a HDHP versus the worst case of meeting the full deductible in two consecutive years. This often results in a baby born in the fall. 

(B) A summer versus fall baby requires ~10 months less childcare before public school (or combined childcare + private school if you want the really long view), a savings of easily $20,000 five years later assuming $2k/mo in childcare expenses. And the first three months of pregnancy with an unassisted conception are realistically going to cost under $1k for the vast majority of people. 

When I've brought this up with friends and acquaintances considering (A), they often tell me that (B) had not crossed their minds, or that the benefit is simply too far away to think about, or variations on those. 

These are all educated, planning-oriented people, and that is still the level of long-range economic consideration they are giving to having a child. They budget for a crib and later on they open a 529 to save for college, but I do not think that they, let alone all the less-planning-oriented people choosing to enter parenthood, can be considered fully aware of the economic contract they are signing.

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