I’m delighted to announce my partner has been struck with a short-term disability. She is pregnant. Which, in the capitalist utopia that is the US, is pretty much the same thing. It’s the only developed country without mandated paid maternity leave; in some states, however, short-term disability insurance covers your income for a few weeks while you recover from the miracle of birth.
You know what is really a miracle? The fact that anyone gives birth in the US at all. (And, in fact, not many people do: the birthrate has plummeted.) It doesn’t just have the worst parental leave in the rich world, it is also the most expensive country in which to have a baby.
And yet the birth rate in the US is higher than it is in Europe where all those freebies exist and tax pays for the baby…..