August 30, 2013

Israeli Jewish total fertility rates

Fertility rates in Israel are interesting not just for their relevance to Middle Eastern affairs, but for their relevance to America. Not surprisingly, the Israelis pay close attention to such matters, but Americans traditionally don't pay attention to Israeli population policy debates for the insights they can offer into American population policy. So, it takes some looking for Americans to find Israeli data.

Thanks to commenter Douglas Knight, here's a graph from Israel: Demography 2012-2030: On the Way to a Religious State by Bystrov and Soffer. This shows total fertility rates (expected babies per lifetime) from 1980 to 2008 for different classes of Jewish Israeli women. The top line is Ultra-Orthodox, who were down to 6.6 from a high of around 7.7. 

At the bottom are Secular at around 2.05, which is the replacement rate. That's a pretty high TFR for secular women in a crowded, advanced country. (Israel's not that different in terms of climate, terrain, population density, and real estate prices from Southern California.) How does Israel achieve replacement level fertility among its least likely category?

49 comments:

IHTG said...

It should be noted that in the past, the difference between "secular", "traditional non-religious" and even "traditional religious" was not as pronounced as it is today.

The "traditional" identity is really a codeword for "Mizrahi prole", ad it only emerged in the past couple decades as this sector gained more political power.

Anonymous said...

Why arent conservatives pointing out that an immigration moratorium is the solution to the fast food workers going on strike for decent wages? There must be some conservatives who have not been bought by big business and corporate America.

Anonymous said...

Steve... Is there any way to see jewish fertility by Iq? In israel i think the ashkenazi have iq of 110 and mizrahi have iq 90.

carol said...

Isn't there as much tendency for religious enthusiasm to die out over a couple generations with Jews, as it happens with Protestants? So the Ultras could crank out the babies, many of whose own children may become ordinary secular Jews.

Anonymous said...

I have heard that the only country in the entire world where fertility is not dysgenic is denmark. Can anyone confirm this?

deconstructingleftism said...

Secular Jews still value family life.

Anonymous said...

Steve Sailer:"How does Israel achieve replacement level fertility among its least likely category?"

Probably has something to do with being surrounded by enemies, both internal (Israeli Arabs) and external (Arabs in occupied territories).Even the most secular Israeli Jew has to know that birthrates are a matter of survival.....

Anonymous said...

In the UK, the highest fertility is among the Haredim (IIRC about 6). Muslims come a poor second at between 3 and 4.

Anonymous said...

Global edition of ‘NYT’ runs op-ed against ‘Arab women giving birth’ in Israel

Unbelievable. On the anniversary of MLK’s I have a dream speech, the global edition of the New York Times, the International Herald Tribune, runs a piece by Shmuel Rosner deploring the Arab birth rate– or the Muslim Arab birth rate– as a threat to his “dream” of the Jewish state. The piece involves government subsidies that increase the likelihood of “Arab women giving birth.”

And Arab babies make Israel “feel less Jewish.” By the way, America feels a lot less white than it did when I was growing up, and the New York Times or its affiliates didn’t run arguments against women of color giving birth.

(...)

Anonymous said...


As others noted, your implicit model seems to be that the children stay in their parents' category. I question whether that's true enough not to spoil your implication.

anony-mouse said...

'... against Arab women giving birth in Israel.'

If you read the actual op-ed, Rosner doesn't like Arabs or Haredi Jews giving birth. And as has been mentioned the Haredim have a much higher birthrate than Arabs.

Its unfortunate that Phil Weiss' eyesight is getting so bad (he is in his late '50's after all). If he had been younger I would have assumed that he's a hopeless liar.

Roberto said...

What are the explainations for the terms "traditional non-religious" and "traditional religious"?
Traditional in what way?

Anonymous said...

I have heard it explained that one reason secular Israelis reproduce at the replacement level is that there is perceived to be a nontrivial possibility of losing a child to war or terrorism.

The Dude said...

I used to listen to Ayelet Waldman go off on feminist and antiracist spiels in law school. Career, oppression of women, marriage as a trap.

I think she did Harvard Journal of Feminist Law Stuff, too. Could be wrong.

Then she graduated and worked a crappy few years as an public defender (ADA?)

She met Michael Chabon, married and had three or four kids.

She's a nice Jewish mama writing potboiler detective novels in some cottage in the hills in LA now. Loves the kids (but famously loves Chabon more).

Makes you wonder how much of modern feminism is Jewish psychosexual issues writ large. Jewish women do rule the roost ... after they separate hubby from his mama, at least.

Pity so many white gentile girls get sucked in and go sterile pursuing careers they were told were their destiny.

Hanna Rosin, same shtick. Nice smart beta husband, two kids, smallish NYC apartment, yet she preaches hook-up culture to the masses.

Go figure.

Big Bill said...

Your chart is interesting for another resin: the generational multiplier, which you leave out.

The Hasids start having babies quite early, 16-18 years old, some of them.

By the time they are elderly great-grannies they can easily have over a hundred descendants.

In fact, one Jewish great-great-granny celebrated in Ha'aretz 10-15 years ago had something like 1200 descendants.

On the other hand, a secular who has one kid at 30 and another at 35, is going to have way, way fewer descendants in the same time period.

The Jews only have a few more years to straighten out the Hasids. By 2019 Hasids and Arabs are going to be the majority of school children in Israel.

I expect they are going to start cutting off their welfare and shipping them to America fairly quickly.

Anonymous said...

Steve Sailer:"How does Israel achieve replacement level fertility among its least likely category?"

Heavy subsidies from foreign donors is what propels the fertility rate. If you take out government employees few US middle class families is secure enough to have many kids. Can you think of any prominent (rich) American that is concerned about White or Black fertility rates being too low?

Anonymous said...

Good for them for looking out for their own people and interests. I wish Western European peoples did the same thing, but they've acquired a kind of geno-suicidal self-loathing that shows no signs of abating. In fact, it's getting worse.

Anonymous said...

In other Israel demographic news:

Israel confirms plan to deport African migrants to Uganda

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/aug/30/israel-plan-deport-african-migrants-uganda

"rumours" that Uganda may have agreed to the arrangement in exchange for a deal for money and weapons.

Anonymous said...

In other Israel demographic news:

Israel confirms plan to deport African migrants to Uganda

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/aug/30/israel-plan-deport-african-migrants-uganda

"rumours" that Uganda may have agreed to the arrangement in exchange for a deal for money and weapons.

Anonymous said...

First, there are very few truly secular persons in Israel. Most people are traditional in some way - outside of the university marxists and similar, people are not really secular in Israel. They may not be orthodox but they are not secular in the way US Jews have become. Secondly, I believe Israelis go for an extra child because when you send them to the army, you want a spare. This is not a joke. Families want an extra. Third, anything from any professor in any Israeli university is suspect. They are the only left wing seculars in Israel. They have predicted - wrongly - for 40 years that the Arabs would overtake the Jews demographically, if Israel would not give up the West Bank and not a single one of their predictions has come true. Finally, democracy is important to Israel but not as important as the Jewish values of the state. And they will do what they have to do to survive as a Jewish state - no matter what. I lived there for five years while working for a US multinational. Unlike the Europeans, they do not want to commit suicide and have every intention on winning. The ones in the West Bank remind you of settlers in Western movies. Determined - they are not going anywhere and they are not afraid of the Arabs. They believe time is on their side and as far as I can see, they are right. They are growing fast and currently there may be as many Jewish children in the West Bank as muslim children.

Luke Lea said...

The religious shall inherit the earth.

Anonymous said...

The reason is because Judaism is a non-doctrinal religion. This is foreign concept to gentiles.

Christianity is a cognitive religion. It's defined by its beliefs. If you believe, bam, you're a Christian.

For Jews, you just are Jewish. That's it. Phil Roth is probably a complete atheist, but he's obviously very Jewish. It's who you are, not what you think. That's why secular Jews don't feel so much less Jewish than more traditional Jews.

NOTA said...

Anon 3:37:

Maybe. Im skeptical about how many people really are going to have an extra kid or two on this logic, though.

Anonymous said...

http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2013/08/13/white-definitions-merit-and-admissions-change-when-they-think-about-asian-americans

Orlando said...

"Makes you wonder how much of modern feminism is Jewish psychosexual issues writ large."

Jewish women have highest rates of what is called High testosterone woman syndrome. Makes you bossy, shrewd, going to politics etc. Also lesbian. Slavic women are reportedly second.

Dr Van Nostrand said...


Steve Sailer:"How does Israel achieve replacement level fertility among its least likely category?"

THere is a saying in India-after 6 months of friendship ,the friends start interchanging personalities.

The corollary to that is osmosis by war as elucidated by Niall Fergusson in War of World where enemies adopt certain characteristics of the other

Palestinians imitate Israelis in their thrift,entrepreneurial ability(West Bank is the fast growing economy in the Middle East,military might(Palestinians are the only Arabs who have successfully managed to wound Israel enough to bring them to the negotiating table),lower birth rates and technical expertise and Israelis imbibe the old world tribalism,religiosity( in contrast to todays Israelis the early Zionists were mostly agnostic socialists) and hyper patriotism which Palestinians are known for. One aspect of this are these high birth rates even among the secular Israelis.

Anonymous said...

How does Israel achieve replacement level fertility among its least likely category?

Israeli health care includes infertility treatment.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone seen a breakdown by iq? Famously, in the usa and europe the lowest iq white women have many more babies than the highest iq white women. I wonder if this is true in israel as well

Svigor said...

Steve... Is there any way to see jewish fertility by Iq? In israel i think the ashkenazi have iq of 110 and mizrahi have iq 90.

Maybe there should be a way to see Jewish IQ by ethnicity. I've read the Ashkenazi in Israel have a mean IQ of 104. I want to say that was Lynn's estimate, but don't hold me to that.

Svigor said...

Steve Sailer:"How does Israel achieve replacement level fertility among its least likely category?"

Probably has something to do with being surrounded by enemies, both internal (Israeli Arabs) and external (Arabs in occupied territories).Even the most secular Israeli Jew has to know that birthrates are a matter of survival.....


I always find this a bit just-so for my taste. Like a form of special pleading. White populations are all surrounded by enemies, too, and contrary to the Israeli population, the white populations are all being invaded.

'... against Arab women giving birth in Israel.'

If you read the actual op-ed, Rosner doesn't like Arabs or Haredi Jews giving birth. And as has been mentioned the Haredim have a much higher birthrate than Arabs.

Its unfortunate that Phil Weiss' eyesight is getting so bad (he is in his late '50's after all). If he had been younger I would have assumed that he's a hopeless liar.


So, Rosner's more like a Nordic Supremacist than a White supremacist, then. Thanks.

I have heard it explained that one reason secular Israelis reproduce at the replacement level is that there is perceived to be a nontrivial possibility of losing a child to war or terrorism.

If only Israel would stop being so xenophobic and racist; they could increase the population the proper way, by importing millions/hundreds of thousands of cognitively elite Han Chinese.

Big Bill (and Whiskey, about a thousand times): The Jews only have a few more years to straighten out the Hasids. By 2019 Hasids and Arabs are going to be the majority of school children in Israel.

Third, anything from any professor in any Israeli university is suspect. They are the only left wing seculars in Israel. They have predicted - wrongly - for 40 years that the Arabs would overtake the Jews demographically, if Israel would not give up the West Bank and not a single one of their predictions has come true.

Hmmm, interesting effect you guys have found here. Almost serves like a cover story, doesn't it.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 8/30/13, 8:43 PM wrote:

The reason is because Judaism is a non-doctrinal religion ... For Jews, you just are Jewish. That's it.

That's too strong a statement. Almost all Orthodox Jews believe acceptance of the 13 Principles of Faith (Sheloshah Asar Ikkarim) formulated by Maimonides is obligatory. But observance has always been more important in Judaism than doctrine. Most Orthodox would say that at least attempted observance of the 613 precepts (mitzvot) is required to be a good Jew, and some Orthodox rabbis opine that non-observant Jews don't have a place in "the world to come" (olam haba).

Also, don't ignore the ethnic dimension to Judaism that contributes to formation of Jewish identity. Going back centuries, all of the ancestors of most of today's non-observant Ashkenazim were observant Ashkenazi Jews. That's why it's possible for someone like Philip Roth to feel very Jewish despite not being very observant or a believer.

Anonymous said...

Heavy subsidies from foreign donors is what propels the fertility rate

If that's an oblique reference to U.S. foreign aid, it's not true. U.S. foreign aid amounted to approximately 1.2% of Israeli GDP in 2012. Back in the 1970's, Israel may have needed money from the U.S., but that is no longer the case.

Anonymous said...



Svigor:"I always find this a bit just-so for my taste. Like a form of special pleading. White populations are all surrounded by enemies, too,"

Really?Who are the the enemy states currently surrounding the UK? Who are the enemy states currently surrounding France? I must have missed the stuff in the news about the Spanish and the Germans dedicating themselves to the holy task of wiping France off the map.


Svigor:" and contrary to the Israeli population, the white populations are all being invaded."

Don't confuse the USA with other White nations.As of 2001, the UK is 92.1% White. Seems that the invasion has not made all that much progress outside of the USA.

Svigor:"If only Israel would stop being so xenophobic and racist; they could increase the population the proper way, by importing millions/hundreds of thousands of cognitively elite Han Chinese."

One of the many pluses of Judaism is that it is not a proselytizing faith. It is meant for Jews. Christianity, sadly, has all these universal pretensions....Just as every human is a potential Christian, so, too, is every human a potential American citizen. Maybe the USA needs to junk/modify Christianity in order to make any headway....

Perspective said...

Anonymous wrote:
"Don't confuse the USA with other White nations.As of 2001, the UK is 92.1% White. Seems that the invasion has not made all that much progress outside of the USA."

Looking at the 2011 census for England and Wales, it shows that the demographic displacement has made much progress since then. The white population has fallen from 91.3 percent in England and Wales to 86 percent. In Canada the proportion of visible minorities has climbed from 13 percent in 2001 to nearly 20 percent in 2011. The drop in the percentage white for those places was roughly in line with what took place in the US (69.1 to 63.7) over the same decade.

Anonymous said...

Israeli culture is very pro-natal and very traditional in regards to family formation. Baby does not have two Daddies in Israeli children's literature. Jewish culture from Eastern Europe was extremely family oriented as was Middle Eastern Jewish culture and those are the populations that came together to form Israel. Very few Israeli Jews come from the US Jewish population and the anti-male, feminist fringe culture in the US which pulls the media and mainstream feminist culture leftwards in the US does not exist in Israel. Most women in Israel want to be married and to be mothers.

Anonymous said...

At some point in the not-too-distant future, the Israelis will decide to cut off the ultra-orthodox from welfare. Conveniently, and seemingly spontaneously, a law will be proposed in the US Congress announcing no-limit, open immigration from Israel. To correct our shameful lack of diversity, of course. Republicans will explain that ultras are "natural conservatives" (even though they are loyal to another country and support maximum welfare). To oppose such a law will of course be deemed anti-semitic hate speech.

Millions of shiftless ultras will be dumped into the US welfare rolls. They will doubtless triple or quadruple with each generation. The problem will be solved--at least from Israel's perspective.

Anonymous said...

Komment Kontrol ruined this thread.

Oh well, at least Svigor managed to get through, once or twice.

But I appear to have failed utterly.

Anonymous said...

The current therapeutic multicult state uses all sorts of coercive measures, but most of them are destructive and ultimately suicidal. By way of contrast, the old GDR was comparatively a positive force.

https://nydwracu.wordpress.com/2013/08/31/burnout/
(...)
The death of history is not a leftist conclusion. It is strictly a liberal one.

The reason for that east-western difference is the fact that the GDR had an “educated mother scheme” and actively tried to encourage first births among the more educated. It did so by propagandizing the opinion that every educated woman should “present at least one child to socialism” and also by financially rewarding its more educated citizen to become parents. The government especially tried to persuade students to become parents while still in college and it was quite successful in doing so. In 1986 38% of all women, who were about to graduate from college, were mothers of at least one child and additional 14% were pregnant and 43% of all men, who were about to graduate from college, were fathers of at least one child. There was a sharp decline in the birth rate and especially in the birth rate of the educated after the fall of the Berlin wall. Nowadays only 5% of those about to graduate from college are parents.

A study done in the western German State of Nordrhein-Westfalen by the HDZ revealed that childlessness was especially widespread among scientists. It showed that 78% of the female scientists and 71% of the male scientists working in that State were childless.

Intelligence, like most things, is about 50% heritable. If education correlates to any non-negligible degree with intelligence, the GDR was completely right. To value the future, as communism apparently did and as liberalism emphatically does not, leads necessarily to the eugenic conclusion.

(...)

Svigor said...

Really?Who are the the enemy states currently surrounding the UK? Who are the enemy states currently surrounding France? I must have missed the stuff in the news about the Spanish and the Germans dedicating themselves to the holy task of wiping France off the map.

The UK ruling class is the primary enemy of the UK, the French ruling class is the primary enemy of France, etc.

Don't confuse the USA with other White nations.As of 2001, the UK is 92.1% White. Seems that the invasion has not made all that much progress outside of the USA.

True, the rot isn't as advanced in UK and Europe as it is in these USA.

One of the many pluses of Judaism is that it is not a proselytizing faith. It is meant for Jews. Christianity, sadly, has all these universal pretensions....Just as every human is a potential Christian, so, too, is every human a potential American citizen. Maybe the USA needs to junk/modify Christianity in order to make any headway....

I'd have less trouble thinking of Christianity as a barrier to American-American progress if Jews weren't so eager to get rid of it. Just sayin'.

Israeli culture is very pro-natal and very traditional in regards to family formation. Baby does not have two Daddies in Israeli children's literature.

Which is really odd, when you consider how likely a Jew is to be involved in any given two-daddy lit in America. More support for my theory that there's some strange Jewish psychic effect zone somewhere over the Atlantic.

Anonymous said...

"At some point in the not-too-distant future, the Israelis will decide to cut off the ultra-orthodox from welfare. Conveniently, and seemingly spontaneously, a law will be proposed in the US Congress announcing no-limit, open immigration from Israel."

100% incorrect. You have no understanding of the issue at all. The ultra religious Jews live in Israel because they think it is holy. They will not leave. They do not work because of the army, not because they don't want to work. The issue is this: in order to work in Israel, they must first show they did army service and their rabbis feel the army is not religious enough, so they stay learning all day. Most do not want to do this - only a minority wants to learn all day for a life time - but they listen to their rabbis. Israel is now proposing to draft them anyway, with some special concessions for their observance, essentially taking the issue out of the hands of the rabbis. Once that happens, they will enter the work force and that will be that. You look at everything through a US lens - to these people the US barely exists.

Jane Go Unchained said...

" Baby does not have two Daddies in Israeli children's literature."

Maybe not, but they have two daddies in Tel Aviv.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/30/arts/television/the-gay-show-mom-and-dads-on-israeli-tv.html?_r=0

In absolute numbers this may not amount to much, but in a small country like Israel stuff like this has a large cultural reverberation.

"In building families gay parents contribute to the national project of maintaining a Jewish majority."

This is one way of looking at it: a sterile group contributes a few more babies to the national project, while in the past they would have contributed none.

But what if it contributes to the downward slide of secular family formation? The religious more than fill this vacuum. The reason the religious shrug at the show is because they think ALL secular culture is crazy, so why get worked up about one particular show? (They have a point.)

The TFR of secular women in Israel somewhat mirrors that of secular Jewish women in the US, even though it is a bit higher - it hovers above replacement level, while the latter is well below.

Both Jewish communities will be firmly Orthodox in one or two generations, three at the most.

To answer the question whether the Orthodox exp. attrition, yes, but not much. Their demographic growth is both robust and lasting.

This is what the left calls sustainability, I believe.

Anonymous said...

I lived in Israel for 5 years working for a US defense company (in the 90s). My wife and I both thought that Israel then resembled the US in the 1950s - extremely family oriented and at heart, conservative. Very few of the population was truly secular. Most were traditional. A majority of the combat officers in the army were national religious - you could tell by their head covering. These are very determined people. They are certainly not like Europeans who seem to be fading away before our eyes. Perhaps they pull the culture rightward.

Jane Go Unchained said...

@9/1/13, 8:51 PM,

" Israel then resembled the US in the 1950s"

And look what happened to us. Total crackup. I think Israeli secular society is headed in the same direction.

Look, Israeli secular women have a TFR that is only just above replacement level, and it is a very small population. The Orthodox have a simply huge birthrate. They will replace the seculars in one generation. Got to.

This is one of those situations that is happening, and will only be truly recognized when the facts on the ground are complete (as the Israelis themselves would put it).

The only real question is will enough of the ultras move towards the state to support it? (i.e., replace the seculars who didn't reproduce?)

I think they will. They plus the national religious types will form the basis of the Israeli state going forward. (Add to that a small number of seculars who become religious. This is not a huge movement but does happen. And it might pick up as the trends become clear: secularism = death.)

I wonder if Israel is a laboratory for US whites in this sense.

One thing the religious in Israel have over US "believers" is a total disinterest in popular culture. They don't bother decrying it, it's a waste of energy.

SFG said...

"Which is really odd, when you consider how likely a Jew is to be involved in any given two-daddy lit in America. More support for my theory that there's some strange Jewish psychic effect zone somewhere over the Atlantic."

I thought MacDonald had this one covered. You only want to destroy the society if you're not the principal component of it--thus Jews want to keep Israel strong and America weak.

He actually raised the possibility this might be unconscious--I lived in NYC for 20 years, and I can assure you my 'co-tribalists' believed their own BS. My mother, was from one of the whiter countries in South America, and thought the gay stuff was disgusting. I asked her why Jews always voted Democrat--she wasn't in a synagogue, having married out, and didn't know. She thought it might have something to do with the Christian Right.

MQ said...

That's why secular Jews don't feel so much less Jewish than more traditional Jews.

This is crazy. The ultra-orthodox are totally, totally different than secular Jews. Secular Jews are not really so different than other upper-middle class Americans, ultra-Orthodox are in another planet entirely. Very traditional Jews will hold a funeral for a child who marries outside the faith, secular Jews have 50% intermarriage rates.

Svigor said...

He actually raised the possibility this might be unconscious

I definitely think this is likely. I think it's an oversimplification to think it's either-or, but yes, self-deception and lack of introspection/moral review are huge here. Smart people aren't very good at doing things they know are wrong. They're much better at getting themselves into a place where they think they're doing the right thing, and erecting barriers of rationalization, habit, and self-deception around their self-concept. The ideas of group victimhood and criticism-as-genocide are a good place to start.

--I lived in NYC for 20 years, and I can assure you my 'co-tribalists' believed their own BS.

I buy that. This is one of the most debilitating beliefs that obtains in the Stormfront-type circles, IMO; the insistence that Jewish malfeasance is always conscious and deliberate. I don't think it's even mostly concious and deliberate. I think Jews are more guilty of criminal negligence than deliberate wrongdoing. It's when I'm presenting the facts and they go into denial mode that I start upping the charges. :)

Anonymous said...

"One thing the religious in Israel have over US "believers" is a total disinterest in popular culture. They don't bother decrying it, it's a waste of energy."

Yes. I noticed that. Popular culture to them is simply nonsense - like something invented to amuse the mentally handicapped. They never complained about it, it was not nearly important enough to complain about or even to notice.

Anonymous said...

"Svigor said"

It is completely normal that people who can't read or understand modern Israeli Hebrew, have zero comprehension of the difference between American Jews, and Israeli-Americans.

There's quite a lot of Israeli-Americans now; they ALMOST NEVER socialize with American Jews.

Anonymous said...

The Israelis, and Jews in general seem to have a certain obsession with fertility, circumcision and castration.
Have you heard of Krav Maga, Israel's national self defence system taught to all Israeli children in school? Basically every Israeli and most Jewish children over the age of six is conditioned to solve conflicts in one of two ways: Destroy his left or ball, or his right. Even girls aren't safe as they are told a strike in the cunt is effective as well.
No other nationality is quite so adept at targeting their opponents' nuts. Have you ever watched two Israeli boys spar? Whether it be Krav Maga, Taekwondo, Karate, Kickboxing or whatever one of the boys' balls is bound to get hurt. I've never actually seen Israeli boys spar without a groin-guard but they just kick the groin so accurately and so hard that no cup known to man could keep the kosher testicles safe. In fact I'd bet good money you can't find a video on youtube of two Israeli boys fighting for more than a minute before cherries get cooked.
Suffice it to say that Palestinian American boy that got his face busted by Israeli cops last year - let's just say he might not have as high a fertility rate as he did before.