Economic Recovery and Splitsville

April 29, 2011

Taking up smoking cigarettes has got to be one of the most dumb-ass things I’ve ever done in my life — except maybe for being married twice!

From AFP in honor of Kate and Bill and economics:

A telltale sign of US economic recovery: the divorce rate is on the rise, after falling sharply in 2008 and 2009.
“People were afraid they were going to lose their jobs so they were very cautious about getting a divorce because you have to split your assets,” said Linda Lea Viken, the president of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers.

(Illustration found here).

Even at this hour in the morning, the UK’s royal wedding is a media nut crusher.
Usually, I watch CBS and ABC‘s news cycle — thirty minutes of updates and then spool the whole segment again, over and over until it’s time to leave for work.
By then I’ve seen all the news that fits at least three or four times.
Not this morning — all Kate and William.

Divorce, of course, is not on their menu.
Continuing from the AFP report:

According to figures provided by the Academy, the United States has the world’s highest divorce rate, with 4.95 divorces for every 1,000 inhabitants.
The marriage rate is 9.8 for every 1,000 people, according to the US Census Bureau.
Traditionally, in periods of economic downturn, there is less divorce and fewer separations, divorce lawyers say.
But there are also fewer marriages and people often hold off on having a child.
A Pew Research poll taken at the end of 2009, when the US economy was slowly recovering from its 19-month recession, found that some 15 percent of adults younger than 35 years old had postponed getting married because of the recession while 14 percent said they had delayed having a baby.
The latest figures from the Centers for Disease Control show a sharp drop in the divorce rate between 2007 and 2009.
In New York state, for example, the number of divorces dropped from 51,626 to 41,899; in Florida, there were 78,357 divorces in 2007 and 73,860 in 2009; and in Pennsylvania, the numbers dropped from 32,293 to 25,690.

Economics does have a strong influence on a marriage, even in the rack.
In a new book called, “Spousonomics: Using Economics to Master Love, Marriage and Dirty Dishes,” there’s a claim the best tips for keeping a marriage strong come not from Oprah or Dr. Ruth but from close economic analysis.
From ABC News:

Most all married couples say they want to have more sex, but the number-one thing that stands in the way is exhaustion. People say they’re too tired for it at the end of a long day.
“Glamour” magazine might say that couples should spice things and make sex more special with some candles or a massage, but according to the authors, economics says it’s better to just get on with it.
“Some mediocre sex is better than no amazing sex,” said Anderson (one of the book’s authors).
It all boils down to simple supply and demand.
In business, when the cost of something goes up, the demand goes down.
“This can be true for sex as well,” said Anderson.
“When you make it cheaper — and we don’t mean in monetary terms, we mean in terms of time and energy — demand for it can rise.”
“The more expensive sex is, you are celibate, and the cheaper it is, you are a rabbit,” added Szuchman (the other book author).
Couples can have “cheaper” sex, the economists say, by finding different times of the day.
Make it a priority and don’t wait until you’re in bed ready for sleep.
The bottom line is that if you have more sex, you’ll have more sex.

Cheap sex with more money makes for a very-expensive divorce lawyer — that’s just economics, baby.

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