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Japan’s Demographic Disaster

Tyler Durden's picture


Submitted by John W. Traphagan via The Diplomat,

Japan is faced with an unprecedented population challenge that will have social, economic, and political consequences for years to come.

Last August, I wrote an article for The Diplomat  that discussed some of the issues Japan is facing in relation to population decline.  As I noted, the population has dropped for three years in a row.  Recently, the Japanese government announced that the population decrease for 2012 is expected to be 212,000—a new record—while the number of births is expected to have fallen by 18,000 to 1,033,000—also a record low.  Projections by the Japanese government indicate that if the current trend continues, the population of Japan will decline from its current 127.5 million to 116.6 million in 2030, and 97 million in 2050. This is truly astonishing and puts Japan at the forefront of uncharted demographic territory; but it is territory that many other industrial countries also are beginning to enter as well. 

Predicting the consequences of Japan's demographic shift is difficult.   And it is important to remember that these are projections; it seems to me unlikely that this trend will continue for the next century without some sort of intervening political, cultural, or economic factors that generate increased immigration or more robust fertility rates.  Indeed, there have been modest—very modest—increases in the number of foreign residents in Japan over the past twenty years, with a little over twice the number today (2,134,151) as compared to 1990 (1,075,317). Many towns have developed international centers where opportunities are developed and supported, creating contexts for interactions between local residents and foreigners such as a monthly English dinner hosted in the town where I have done fieldwork for several years. 

Government officials have often explained to me that one of the goals of these initiatives is to create contexts in which Japanese people can interact, and thus become more comfortable with, foreigners.  The widespread presence of foreign English teachers supported through the JET program and other English language programs has also meant that, unlike forty for fifty years ago, most younger Japanese have grown up regularly interacting with individuals from other countries.   At the same time, there has been some immigration of women from other Asian countries, such as the Philippines, into rural parts of Japan for the purpose of marrying men who otherwise would have had difficulties finding a wife among the native population.  These developments may allow for increased openness to immigration in the future, although for the most part, the Japanese government has remained lukewarm, at best, when it comes to allowing any significant increase in the number of permanent residents or immigrants. Naturalized Japanese citizenship remains difficult to obtain. 

While predicting the future of these demographic trends is difficult, the causes are at least somewhat decipherable.  The proximate cause of population decline in Japan are fairly clear: a low fertility combined with increased life expectancy has led to a population structure that is increasingly weighted towards older members of society.  Currently there are significantly fewer people under 30 than there are between the ages of 30 and 60.  As the population of middle-aged individuals grows older and dies, there will be far fewer people remaining behind.  In other words, the current middle-aged generation of Japanese has failed to replace itself.  The question, of course, is why?

Various studies of demographic change in Japan have linked declining fertility to other changing social factors such as increased education, delayed marriage age, more economic opportunities for women, and the expense of raising children in modern, urban societies.  All of these have played a role in reducing fertility over the past few decades.  In addition, beyond delayed marriage many Japanese have chosen not to marry and, as a result, not have children.  According to the 2010 census, 30% of all households in Japan were single, representing the largest category of household composition in the country.  A significant portion of these households were widows over the age of 65. At the same time, a not insignificant portion were women and men in both early adulthood and middle-age who have simply chosen to not get married.  In a society like Japan where child-birth out of wedlock is stigmatized, the decision not to marry also normally means that one has chosen not to have children.

Indeed, there are many women in Japan today in their forties and fifties who have opted for a career over marriage and child-rearing.  In Japan, social pressures make it difficult for women to manage a career while also raising a family.  Furthermore, recent trends suggest that both men and women are increasingly uncertain about the value of marriage and having a family.  A government survey of people between the ages of 18 and 34 in 2011 showed that over 61% of unmarried men among those surveyed lacked a girlfriend and 49.5% unmarried women had no boyfriend, the latter being a new record. Forty percent of respondents indicated that there was no need to marry and 45% of men showed no interest in "dating the opposite sex." These results, which represented significant increases over the same type of survey conducted in previous years, have raised concerns that the population problem Japan is facing will not change in the foreseeable future. 

The consequences of changing attitudes about marriage and gender roles and associated low fertility are considerable.  One problem that has arisen is that many single women are living on very low incomes and have joined the ranks of the poor.  Recent research has shown that 1 in 3 single women of working age in Japan qualify as poor and that the number of poor women in Japan is likely to increase; by 2030 it is projected that 1 in 5 women in Japan will be single. Many of these women may well be living in some level of poverty. 

Another problem Japan faces is that the general low fertility rate means there are not enough younger people paying into the national pension program, and this will cause increasing strain on government coffers as the proportion of elderly (currently about 23% of the population is over 65) continues to grow. 

Finally, the decline of the population over the next few decades, and the shortage of young people in particular, will have a significant impact on the Japanese labor force.  Questions related to how to maintain economic growth—an issue that has been at the forefront of thinking about the country for the past twenty years, due to a generally sluggish economy—with a decreasing population are both complex and on the minds of policymakers.  One obvious solution to this would be for Japan to relax immigration policies and allow for more workers, particularly healthcare workers, to enter the country.  As noted above, to date this has not been a particularly palatable solution, but this may well change as younger Japanese, with regular experience and interactions with foreigners, move into positions of power and guide policy.

An alternative to this social-centered solution of increased immigration has been raised in recent years.  Rather than relaxing immigration laws, some have proposed increasing investment in robotics as a means of addressing the conflict of a shortfall of labor with the need for workers.  This idea has been raised particularly in relation to elder care, where demand for workers has increased rapidly with the promulgation of the longer term care insurance program in 2001 and the continued growth of the elderly population.  It may well be that a technological solution to Japan’s population problem will be seen as preferable to other possible solutions.

Obviously, only time will tell.  But Japan is faced with an unprecedented population challenge that will have social, economic, and political consequences over the next century—consequences that will not only affect Japan, but also influence Japan’s trading partners as well as its political and military allies. 

There is, perhaps, no single variable in the complex web of East Asian politics more uncertain in terms of how it may influence future relations throughout the region than the fate of Japan’s population, because the manner in which that population changes over the next several decades is both difficult to predict and likely to have a profound influence in shaping the regional role Japan is able to play as a political, cultural, and economic power.


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Fri, 02/01/2013 - 19:53 | 3207847 pitz
pitz's picture

The very well-known Japanese SUKI (tm) RELIGION, The New World Religion (tm), is named the "motherfucking religion" with over two million members worldwide.  Unfortunately, like much of Japan, it is quite short of motherfuckers. 


Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:36 | 3207906 economics9698
economics9698's picture

Socialism...the biggest boner killer ever invented for high IQ people.

If they want people to breed then get rid of the welfare state. 


Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:48 | 3207936 true brain
true brain's picture

please replace the drop in population with blacks and hispanics. that will make japan much stronger. and elect anorher obama. it will be truly wknderful.


Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:45 | 3208152 trav777
trav777's picture

yes because we know that diversity cures everything. 

Also, listen to how HORRID it is that a population doesn't continue to grow.  GFD if it fails to grow, everything collapses.  This doesn't sound like something sustainable does it?

I will definitely move to Japan to impregnate jap chicks tho...hell yes, sign me up.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 22:20 | 3208272 akak
akak's picture


Also, listen to how HORRID it is that a population doesn't continue to grow.  GFD if it fails to grow, everything collapses.

I have to agree with you here Trav.  The whole tone of this idiot's thesis is "declining population = catastrophe".  Why?  What is wrong with a declining population, and why should a declining population be WORSE than a steadily growing one?  What if Japan was actually overpopulated, and is now merely reaching its ideal population level?

Similarly, where is it carved in stone that an economy MUST grow in order to be "healthy", however one choses to define healthy?  Name one organism in nature, aside maybe from cancer, that grows indefinitely and without limit.  Is THAT really the model that we as a society should be emulating?

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 22:34 | 3208320 Harlequin001
Harlequin001's picture


Fri, 02/01/2013 - 22:37 | 3208328 akak
akak's picture


Sat, 02/02/2013 - 02:39 | 3208719 Lore
Lore's picture

This article looks at too narrow a slice of factors.

Society will adapt. We've already changed a lot.  Seniors may have passed their peak earning years, but they continue to spend and invest and influence culture and live active and even productive lives. In many respects, the 'career' of the last generation was a kind of multi-decadal indentured servitude. Who's to say that the pension funding model can't be replaced by something much more personal and self-determined?  WE DON'T NEED THE BIG GOVERNMENT PROGRAMS OF THE LAST GENERATION. WHAT WE NEED IS TO TAKE CONTROL OF OUR OWN LIVES.

Never mind the talk of 'robotics.' Technology allows few people to accomplish more. Our measures of 'sustainability' (hate that word, no thanks to Agenda 21) need to be reconsidered. Don't let other people write your story for you. Never mind the media focus on collective, communitarian 'sustainability.' Think in terms of sustainability for yourself and your family, and you will be a lot more at ease with your future.

I wonder how much the Fukushima radiation is affecting the Japanese population. We haven't seen anything in that regard, yet I understand that radiation is still pouring out.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 23:03 | 3208397 Calmyourself
Calmyourself's picture

"Why?  What is wrong with a declining population"  just across the Sea of Japan there are 25 million swinging dicks who gots no bitchez..  These dicks is going to get pissed shortly and some small island nationalistic fervor ( set in motion by their masters) will set them off and they will come for a visit.  Now don't start with "China got no sealift capability"  By the time it comes to that no one will have any just  1/2 million fishing boats..  I give it 5 years..

Demography is destiny, Japan is dead, soon in historical terms to be someones colony.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 23:22 | 3208438 Freddie
Freddie's picture

A highly radioactive colony.  I like the Japanese.  They seem to be very smart but then they do really stupid things.

They have gone into debt at a race worse than the USA.    Oba-MAO and Bernake are catching up and will pass them.  The Japnese just seem to make catastrophic mistakes.  The Yakuza have so much influence. Japan built stupid money wasting projects but a better breakwater would have saved Fukashima.  There is a nuke plant north of Fuka and the breakwater was a few feet higher and was unscathed.


Sat, 02/02/2013 - 02:11 | 3208704 Seer
Seer's picture

If a bullfrog had wings...

There will always be something that goes askew.

But it's still moot.  Perpetual growth on a finite planet ain't possible.

Japan is an island, a small land mass that has WAY more people on it than can be supported with the small amounts of physical resources they have available.  So, again, how smart are they?

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 00:07 | 3208528 r3phl0x
r3phl0x's picture

Normally, a shrinking population would make each individual wealthier in real terms. But there's a problem once the "population" as a group is in debt: there are fewer slaves to repay the excessive spending of their ancestors, and they all must work even harder, or the debt holders must take a haircut, or both.

The problem is debt *plus* a declining population.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 02:18 | 3208706 Seer
Seer's picture

The "game" was always about growth.  But, as you clearly note, the game has gotten to the point that there's just no way out, it ain't going to hold up under contraction.

We're all going to get blasted by this.  Sadly, the age-old popular instruction manuals gave us conflicting information: go forth and multiply; the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (didn't warn of the ramifications of exponential growth)...

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 08:42 | 3208872 Marco
Marco's picture

Despite the current trade deficit, they are still in debt to themselves ...

When you state that a shrinking population makes each individual wealthier you are already ignoring the wealth distribution ... and internal debt is just an aspect of wealth distribution. So you're being inconsistent.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 05:49 | 3208801 meizu
meizu's picture

ZH should give population scaremongering a rest, and good luck to western countries that think immigration is the answer to everything.  Ever heard of "behavioral sink"?  The present problem in Japan is mostly caused by overpopulation, not low birth rate.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 18:26 | 3209678 strangewalk
strangewalk's picture

Without growth who will pay the pensions and healthcare of Japan's rapidly growing number of retirees? How will Japan defend itself economically or militarily against a rapidly growing and correspondingly assertive and aggressive China? Without growth comes little or no technological advancement in relation to international competition, which is basically what supports Japan and without which Japan couldn't even feed itself. Japan will either have to grow or die, and since the men are now all limp dicks and the women emotionally vacuous bitches, Japan will soon either need to embrace immigration, or immigrants will forcefully flood into Japan like a conquoring barbarian horde. 

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 22:37 | 3208330 Chuck Walla
Chuck Walla's picture

Its nothing importing 11 million Mexicans couldn't cure...


Sat, 02/02/2013 - 18:37 | 3209694 strangewalk
strangewalk's picture

A new race is born--the Mexijap, or the Japican? 

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 23:29 | 3210300 ShakaZulu
ShakaZulu's picture

With yummy sushi tacos!

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 05:59 | 3208813 WhiteNight123129
WhiteNight123129's picture

Well, for once Trav I agree with you. Have the guys since the level of pollution around the world and resources constraints. Every other OECD nation should follow the lead of Japan. That is the responsible thing to do. Shrink the population.

Population and Pollution might have the same ethymological root!


Sat, 02/02/2013 - 16:04 | 3209450 SokPOTUS
SokPOTUS's picture

You'll have to fight me for 'em trav...


Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:02 | 3207977 AlaricBalth
AlaricBalth's picture

12 Trillion USD in Japanese debt, plus whatever is accumulated over the coming years, is going to get awfully burdensome for a population that is going to decline by 24%. No wonder the Bank of Japan has decided to join the global print-fest.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:18 | 3208042 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

Japan is a very crowded country.  Reductions in populations save the planet.  The Japanese are saving the planet.  Why can't you just be happy and accept it?

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 22:20 | 3208279 lincolnsteffens
lincolnsteffens's picture

Coming to a country near you. Must have been part of the NWO plan putting a cluster of nuke plants on the coast over a major fault line. Oh, wait... isn't there one in our most populous state? Hmmmmmmmm.... Perfect plan for a "Beneficial Corporation" to establish a nuke power plant near you.

I know, I must be getting to be a conspiracy theorist. It could be the on line company I've been keeping.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 00:23 | 3208559 trav777
trav777's picture

yeah, they put that plant there KNOWING that 40 fucking years later, an earthquake would happen ON ANOTHER FAULT LINE TOTALLY ELSEWHERE and wipe it out with a tsunami.

You fucking idiot

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 00:59 | 3208615 chindit13
chindit13's picture

I wasn't sure you were the old trav7777, as the style and demonstrated cynical intellect did not seem the same as before.  I have been waiting for your old buddy Cliff to come along and render the final verdict.  After this comment here, however, Cliff isn't needed.

Order has returned to the world.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 10:10 | 3208936 willwork4food
willwork4food's picture

...Did Trav just get DISSED?  ;-)

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 18:52 | 3209726 strangewalk
strangewalk's picture

Reducing population levels is not the answer. Our planet could very easily and comfortably support over 20 times its current population, and possibly 1000 times, while having zero poverty, pollution or crowding and no water or food shortages. The problem relates to mismanagement, incompetence and greedy shorsightedness over the way our current living arrangements are carried out and organized.

This is an intro:

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 22:17 | 3208263 philipat
philipat's picture

Most normal societies would rectify the problem by allowing immigration to make up the numbers. But in xenophobic Japan, their prescious racial purity is far too important.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 02:24 | 3208709 Seer
Seer's picture

Well, there may be some truth to that, though I don't profess to know the Japanese culture that well.

Perhaps, and I'd think that this is the more relevant issues, their country cannot support more people?  The cost of living can only keep going up as energy becomes tighter (regardless of the nuke situation, which has managed to show that the financial sector isn't the king when it comes to externalization of risk).

Years ago the Australian govt was paying the whites there to have children.  They were worried about being overrun by Asians.  This on a landmass that is way over-burdened.  Can you say shoot-yourself-in-the-foot?

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 22:23 | 3208269 philipat
philipat's picture

On the other hand, if thry want to make themselves extinct........

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 23:36 | 3208468 andrewp111
andrewp111's picture

They will just mint Trillion Yen coins. Debt. What Debt? There is no fuckin' debt.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:40 | 3208134 bobthehorse
bobthehorse's picture

America has a demographic disaster, too.

They're called baby boomers.

What we need is a Logans Run solution.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 23:10 | 3208415 Calmyourself
Calmyourself's picture

Your supposedly a follower of Christ and you think killing baby boomers is a good idea?  Perhaps you can find good Korean head shrinker..

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 02:29 | 3208715 Seer
Seer's picture

Green arrow to you for pointing out the disconnect with bob.

The reference to Logan's Run, however, was one of the first things I thought about when I saw this article pop up.  Mentioning it should not mean being shot down (though for bob to bring it up, and in that manner...).  I never offer "solutions," but believe that everything should be talked about in order to better understand what the problem really is.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 01:05 | 3208626 chindit13
chindit13's picture

Why stop there?  Do you not fear inheritance, especially after all the Boomer cross-breeding?  If you are truly serious, does it not make more sense to go after the young'uns, since most all are still fertile unlike the post-menopausal Boomer women and the original target market of Viagra?  Just trying to be practical here.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 19:55 | 3207849 wisefool
wisefool's picture

Isn't this the standard playbook for elitism? send the peasant men off to war and/or tax them to the point they can not support a family. Then the women will line up outside the castle to work. 

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:38 | 3207909 economics9698
economics9698's picture


Fri, 02/01/2013 - 19:54 | 3207850 Dealer
Dealer's picture

Nickles Bass often refers to Japan's demographic challenges.

Sun, 02/03/2013 - 14:31 | 3211237 DosZap
DosZap's picture

The Japanese need to get on Austrailia's bandwagon but QUICK.

Give massive tax incentives, and or bonus Yen to couples to have as many kids as possible NOW,even if they subsidize them, their exoxtence is dependent on it.

Otherwise they are DOA.

Unlike us, we allow far too many immigrants in,(BECAUSE we murdered 50 million americans that would have for the most part turned into productive citizens) and the original citizens quickly are becoming the new minorities.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 19:54 | 3207852 Trying to Understand
Trying to Understand's picture

...and the unknown variable: Fukushima and how it has and will, for generations to come, affect Japans' populaton and perhaps inhabitability...

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:30 | 3207899 Jendrzejczyk
Jendrzejczyk's picture

Perfectly valid point to bring up . Who here knows the true long term damages from that event?


Kind of OT, but an interesting vid about one segment of Japanese society.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:00 | 3207968 knowless
knowless's picture

who in the fuck downvoted you two?

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:09 | 3208003 Jendrzejczyk
Jendrzejczyk's picture

ZH is littered with nuclear physicists with intimate knowledge of all data from Fukushima.

Hahahaha, same guys that got you.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:20 | 3208049 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

Pro-nukers must be sent to Fukushima to clear debris.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:34 | 3208099 Totentänzerlied
Totentänzerlied's picture

Anti-nukers can work the coal mines and breathe the refinery fumes.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 02:34 | 3208718 Seer
Seer's picture

Is that you, Strawman?

The implication is that we HAVE to have the levels of energy that we're currently using (and to consume even more because that's what we do- promote growth).

I'm not anti-anything other than anti-stupid-logic (rather, anti-ill-logic).

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 00:26 | 3208563 A Nanny Moose
A Nanny Moose's picture

Remember Fuck-u-Shima was the result of a government granted monopoly with limited liability....not pro-nukers, or even nuclear energy.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:23 | 3208064 PersonalRespons...
PersonalResponsibility's picture

If spent fuel pool 4 drains, populations will decrease everywhere.  Don't know why you're being junked.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 22:24 | 3208292 lincolnsteffens
lincolnsteffens's picture

Perfect way to sterilize a broad swath of the population.  Shit, there I go again with the far out conspiracy theories again. Shame on me.


When government becomes a law breaker it breeds contempt for the law.Somebody important said that.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:01 | 3207861 mightycluck
mightycluck's picture

I was watchng Fox Business today and this guy came on discussing Japan as well. He pointed out that the idiots thinking that today's jobs numbers were a great sign were deluded. The USA is Japan, but 10 years behind. I found his blog.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 23:26 | 3208443 Freddie
Freddie's picture

TV viewers and Hollywood "movie" watchers keep the matrix alive and help the elites stay in power.  Nice job.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:02 | 3207863 BigDuke6
BigDuke6's picture

A managed population decline is the only hope for the planet with finite resources.

Japans population is ridiculously high anyway - they live like ants.

Scare stories are put about by folks who worry about less consumers.

Africa next.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:20 | 3207883 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

Predictions about the future usually look ridiculous a few years out.

The "disaster" is a function of socialist debt and overinvolvement in the lives of the populace.  This too shall pass.

Finally, as Duke points out, if I were Japanese, I would look forward to a little liebensraum, (living space).

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:37 | 3207908 EmmittFitzhume
EmmittFitzhume's picture

I prefer Darwinism over Eugenics

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:49 | 3208159 trav777
trav777's picture

then you're a motherfucking idiot.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:49 | 3208158 trav777
trav777's picture


Africa...didn't their population quintuple in the past few decades as western food aid subsidized a ridiculously high birthrate?  Same thing in arabfuck countries. 

The Four Horsemen ride hard in Africa

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 08:49 | 3208877 Marco
Marco's picture

It was our oil imports which subsidized the arabfuck countries though.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 22:12 | 3208193 Againstthelie
Againstthelie's picture

I envy the Japanese. Here in Germany we also have the same decline in the birth rate, but a criminal regime has flooded Europe with a third world population that is EXPLODING, while the Germans and Europeans pay for their own genocide.

Central Europe is - like Japan - overpopulated anyway and a shrinking population would be a blessing for everyone and mother nature.

But "thanks" to a completely unnatural and sick interest slavery system, that collapses without GROWTH, which means exponential consumption of resources, MSM media are in full force for propaganda mode pro immigration because Shylock wants endless pounds of flesh...

Ofcourse the "elite" is not living in the mutlicultural ghettos - pardon: paradise - they are living in their segregated villas and their children are sent to expensive private schools.

A very diabolical system that claims genocide and eternal war WITHIN societies, was something that would be wonderful while everyone not agreeing with this HUGE LIE is daemonized.

Therefore i envy and admire the Japanese. Their population will shrink in numbers, they will have to deal with some economic problems for a certain time, until a new equilibrium for the modern way of life will be found (more people who do not want children compared to times, where children also were life savers when people became old), but the japanese people, the society, the unique culture of this people and their community will stay fully intact and therefore will stay robust (if i compare the multicultural society under a desaster like Kathrina with the behaviour of a homogeneous nation, a people, when a desaster that is even worse, like Fukushima, happens, i just become sick, what is happening to the nations of european descent and what they allow is done to them...).

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 22:23 | 3208259 BigDuke6
BigDuke6's picture

Yep - for being the finest in europe you have now been officially holocaust proofed by barbara and her NY buddies.

And if a few teen girls have to be gang raped or murdered thats a small price to pay.


Sat, 02/02/2013 - 00:38 | 3208581 trav777
trav777's picture

Fuckers like Mike Krieger voted for the present pig.  A racial vote.  Out of guilt or trying to have "evidence" to prove a negative.  Futile, but such is the way of the conditioned.

The majority has elected multicult here too.  And they will destroy themselves.  It's pretty simple and it has a nice, clean historical arc to it.  See, nature doesn't care what we value; it has its own forces of creation and destruction.  We might think this or that mountain is pretty and nature decides to blow it up.  Nature might burn down a forest we like and it's barren for longer than a human lifespan.  Mt. St. Helens is still surrounded by barren territory even 30 years now later.

the cretin brown population is simply the force of destruction coming to wipe away what was created.  Ashes to ashes, dust to dust.  It won't be the end of white society or white people, but it is the end of the expansion of "enlightenment" and "western civilization" and all of this.  Brown people don't give a shit about women's rights and this crap.  A woman in africa is more likely to be raped than graduate high school.  What this says to apparently only people who are intelligent enough to see forests for trees is that the population there values rape more than education for women.  It's really that bluntly true...stupid is as stupid DOES.  Core values are expressed via action. 

It's pretty clear that the expansion phase of creative society is over and now things go the other direction.  Eventually, there may be another reawakening; who knows.  But countries such as Germany and the rest of them are either going to wake the fuck up NOW or else they are lost.  But waking up, just like I keep saying, is going to require slaying a lot of sacred jewish cows and deenergizing a lot of jew-powered 3rd rails.

Or to put it another way, it's going to require acting SHAMELESSLY ethnocentrically and discriminatory, like jews do.

There's nothing of value in any culture just because it's a culture.  Fuck the injuns, fuck savages.  Nobody, even THEM, likes their own culture.  They always want to have what others have.  But to say these things is apocryphal; people won't go near this even if they're only THINKING the thoughts.  It's too scary; being racist is REALLY THAT EVIL.  But that's a learnt response.  And it's a fiction.  But whatever. 

What's going to happen is going to happen and life goes on.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 02:43 | 3208720 Taffy Lewis
Taffy Lewis's picture

Hey Trav,

I don't know if you check back on your posts, but I agree with what you are saying.

But you say "It's pretty clear that the expansion phase of creative society is over and now things go the other direction.'

I'm taking my talents to Thailand where my wife is from - with our 2 kids - and I will feel MUCH better helping out hard-working, happy locals instead of this waste-of-space entitlement society of worthless fucks. I refuse to support it.


Sat, 02/02/2013 - 08:40 | 3208871 duo
duo's picture

don't usually agree with  you Trav, but this one was out of the park.  I wonder if TPTB really want to run the world like the old Ottoman Empire.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 13:52 | 3209203 ZeroAvatar
ZeroAvatar's picture

As a country and a race, Russia is probably the Caucasian's last holdout.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 14:08 | 3209225 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

A managed population decline is the only hope for the planet with finite resources.

Well, some others might think that the only hope for the planet is a reduction of consumption. But those others are certainly not 'american'.

And as such, they also know that a decline in 'american' population is absolutely no guarantee of a decline in consumption.

Going back to the number of 'americans' on 1776,July,4th might not be enough in this regard.

Yeah, it would take much more than a managed 'american' population decline to 'save' the planet...

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:04 | 3207865 billwilson
billwilson's picture


1. Japan is overcrowded now, hence overpopulated, so population decline is a good thing ... but can cause problems if too fast. China will have the same issues shortly.

2. An easy solution is to increase the percentage of women in the work force. Now most women who get married stop working. If they were encouraged to continue working you would have a) more workers and b) more women getting married. So more taxpayers, more workers and more kids. 

3. Immigration is not really required ... remember Japan is overpopulated.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:26 | 3208073 sangell
sangell's picture

In vitro fertilization and egg implantation in surrogate mothers would seem to be a solution. Either Japanese women in their mid forties to late fifties whose career has peaked or paying third world woman to bear Japanese children. I am surprised governments facing demographic decline have not yet begun to 'manufacture' replacement citizens in this way.

Along with robotics, Japan may also want to consider making Humanzees or implanting human genes into apes to create more capable animals.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:49 | 3208165 trav777
trav777's picture

you mean black people?  those are already invented

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 23:33 | 3208461 andrewp111
andrewp111's picture

How about inventing robots to raise the children? And while they are at it, they can develop robots to care for the bed-ridden elderly.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 01:09 | 3208631 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

Send in the Gundams! :>D

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:05 | 3207866 chubbyjjfong
chubbyjjfong's picture

Forty percent of respondents indicated that there was no need to marry and 45% of men showed no interest in "dating the opposite sex." 

Does that mean they want to date the same sex?  Just asking..

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:22 | 3207887 Colonel Klink
Colonel Klink's picture

Rut roh, that does sound homo!

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:36 | 3207907 johnconnor
johnconnor's picture

No, it is just in Japan you have very advanced wanking machines, vibrators and lady-like robots... 

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 23:36 | 3208462 Freddie
Freddie's picture

I was thinkin about gettin me one of them "lady robots."  I was afraid she might tell SkyNet that I had guns.  I would tell her about my boating accident.   

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 22:54 | 3210240 cynicalskeptic
cynicalskeptic's picture

Corporate salary man goes out with buddies after work for drinking and hookers or comes home to his sex doll - quiet, submmissive or gets off on cartoon or schoolgirl pornography.   I suspect there's a reason Japanese women are choosing career over marriage.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:41 | 3207917 spdrdr
spdrdr's picture

I for one can hardly wait for the return of the

A car for the times, obviously...

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:35 | 3208105 Totentänzerlied
Totentänzerlied's picture

Just another manifestation of post-war Japanese (fully fucking insane schizophrenic) culture.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 23:30 | 3208455 andrewp111
andrewp111's picture

No. Why "date" when it is better to just "hook up"? Dating can be much more expensive than just buying some Viagra and hiring a woman for the night.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 13:06 | 3209133 post turtle saver
post turtle saver's picture

if it floats, flies, or fucks you're better of renting it

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:04 | 3207870 vintageyz
vintageyz's picture

Maybe the Bank of Japan will print up more people.  

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:14 | 3207877 ersatzteil
ersatzteil's picture

And possibly two notes with the same serial. As in Japanese Twins. Just saying what everyone here is thinking...

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:08 | 3207873 Obama4Ever
Obama4Ever's picture

Who the fuck cares? Not like the human race is going extinct.

I'm starting to wonder why I'm even reading ZH's endless FARK, alarmist articles. I'm still a bit exhausted from December's endless harping on the crisis of the US debt ceiling.

Wake me when some real shit happens.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:38 | 3207910 Pure Evil
Pure Evil's picture

Hey, wake up fuk wad, obama is finishing the job bush started, namely destroying the country.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:53 | 3207947 Obama4Ever
Obama4Ever's picture

Sorry, I dropped out of character for a moment there...

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:22 | 3207889 suteibu
suteibu's picture

And thus we turn a society and a culture into an economic equation. The homogeneous Japanese have to allow foreigners into the nation because, a) it's good for the economy and b).....well, there is no "b."  A population, like an economy, does not have to have continuous growth in order to be healthy and stable.  They both rise and fall according to forces beyond the control of those in power.  Any effort to decrease it or increase destabilizes it.

This is a piece of shit article.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:28 | 3207897 Jack Burton
Jack Burton's picture

97 million is still an overburden on a very crowded land. I expect the Japanese born today when he/she reaches middle age and finds much more space, mouch more demand for labor, lowered food prices due to less demand and less energy imports needed to fuel the 97 million would have ZERO desire to live in a much more crowded land. It is not like anyone is being killed off, it is a natural drop to a more sane population load.

Those who piss, cry and moan about it are a few elites who want exponential growth. They care only about increased profits not a more sustainable and livable Japan. Screw this fetish for ever growing populations. The people are just coming into balance with their world. But the lunatic exponential growth crowd who know zero about the laws of physics and math think that economic growth can only happen in a growing population base. I call major BS on that old 20th century notion. In case some people haven't notice, we are already well into the 21st century!

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:39 | 3208124 Totentänzerlied
Totentänzerlied's picture

Okay, but you get to be the one to tell them their demographics preclude a ponzi-scheme welfare state like what they built last century, and their pension system is an insolvent house of cards! No givesies-backsies! Haha!

But seriously, not much hope that they will be able to manage the transition. They'll do it, and almost certainly get through it better than most other advanced economy societies, but it won't be pretty or fun.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:32 | 3207900 tony wilson
tony wilson's picture

is that you john wayne

is that you mr fujimoto


just the friendly folks from fukishima


Uranium-238 alpha 4.5 billion years Uranium-235 alpha 700 million years Uranium-234 alpha & gamma 245,000 years Plutonium-239 alpha 24,300 years Cesium-137 beta & gamma 30.2 years l Strontium-90 beta 28 years Cobalt-60 beta & gamma 5 years Iodine-125 & 131 beta & gamma 8.1 days



Radionuclide Half Life Radiation Critical Organs Americium-241 430 years alpha, gamma bone & lung Cerium-144 280 days beta, gamma GI tract, lung Ruthenium-106 1 year beta, gamma GI tract, lung Tritium
Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:53 | 3208173 trav777
trav777's picture

so fucking what?  Radiation causes cancer typically in OLD PEOPLE

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 23:13 | 3210271 tony wilson
tony wilson's picture

hey trav777

thanks fot that i have just cursed you.

bowel cancer incoming and entering you real soon.

let us know when the funeral is i fly over to trample the earth down big fella : )

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:35 | 3207904 Vegetius
Vegetius's picture

The great idea of modern Economic Theory -  You NEED to import people to make and do stuff and increase the population, who then need more people to be imported to make and do stuff and increase the population. Really smart thinking, it’s a great pity that this policy has been followed in most Western Countries and that it worked out so well!

And this idea goes to prove that the Economic Elite who think they are so smart cannot understand

1.       Space – that is dimensions or land per person ( take the UK all the food they produce on that island will not even feed the people of London)

2.       Finite – Limited resources , restricted food supplies

So in short they are not the brightest or the best they are Full Retard

Kirk Lazarus - Everybody knows you never go full retard.
Tugg Speedman - What do you mean?
Kirk Lazarus - Check it out. Dustin Hoffman, 'Rain Man,' look retarded, act retarded, not retarded. Counted toothpicks, cheated cards. Autistic, sho'. Not retarded. You know Tom Hanks, 'Forrest Gump.' Slow, yes. Retarded, maybe. Braces on his legs. But he charmed the pants off Nixon and won a ping-pong competition. That ain't retarded. Peter Sellers, "Being There." Infantile, yes. Retarded, no. You went full retard, man. Never go full retard. You don't buy that? Ask Sean Penn, 2001, "I Am Sam." Remember? Went full retard, went home empty handed...

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:39 | 3207914 CTG_Sweden
CTG_Sweden's picture

I don´t get it: Why increase the workforce if they have an unemployment problem. Why?

My impression is rather that the Japanese people need more capital income, not a larger workforce. You got the same problem in Europe and the US. If robots and computers can do jobs that previously required a human workforce the demand for labour shrinks. You don´t need all those people if you got robots and computers.


Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:39 | 3207916 Gimp
Gimp's picture

All that spewing radiation is sure going to accelerate the populations demise...shhhh, don't say anything.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:47 | 3207927 donpaulo
donpaulo's picture

not sure where to begin on a proper criticism of this submission. There are a variety of reason for the dip in population not addressed in this article. For those really interested there are better sources of information available via a search engine. Also a similar condition exists in South Korea which I think it is fair to say has little to do with the "unique" Japanese perspective many claim as the source of the problem.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:41 | 3208136 Totentänzerlied
Totentänzerlied's picture

Japan and South Korea may be mortal enemies but that does not mean they are so different from each other.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 04:32 | 3208769 donpaulo
donpaulo's picture

They are in fact more similar that either is prepared to admit

including the fact that neither of them are having many children

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 20:47 | 3207934 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

 It's going to get really interesting in the next week or so, when the import cost pipeline explodes for the Japanese. That nut-job Abe is going to get his ass ass chewed bigtime, as inventories get re-stocked with parabolic price increases.

 Japan imports everything but radioactive fish... Japans citizenism is going to shit it's pants with the yen devaluation, and sales tax increases that are coming. I predict a strong retrace in usd/jpy next week. There is major resistance in the 93.50 area. The runaway train is about to derail if it's speed isn't kept in check...

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:16 | 3208041 Room 101
Room 101's picture

The Japanese should be careful what they wish for. 

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 23:56 | 3208106 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

  +1/   Gotta love homogeneous societies.  It's time for those whiney purple haired Japanese"youth" bitchez,  to get too work...<>

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:05 | 3207990 dolph9
dolph9's picture

So I guess Japan needs to import millions of people from Africa and then all of their problems will be solved?

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:55 | 3208183 trav777
trav777's picture

yep..or mexico and el salvador.

the reason that those places are like they are and japan is like it is is because of WHITE RACISM.  And oppression and all of that.

Once Africans move to Japan, they will fit right in and be just like brown japs with gigantic lips...there's no inborn difference between any of these races; it's just a social construct that curiously can be tested for with DNA marker analysis.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 14:13 | 3209233 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

So I guess Japan needs to import millions of people from Africa and then all of their problems will be solved?

It will buy some time for sure.

It would generate a decrease in consumption.
The trouble is to know how long before they turn into 'americans' and from then, booom, consumption explosion.

'Americanism' has shown its capacity to spread.

Low consuming populations are pretty soon subjugated by 'americanism' and it is game over.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 14:47 | 3209289 TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

AnAnonymous said:

The trouble is to know how long before they turn into 'americans' and from then, booom, consumption explosion.

'Americanism' has shown its capacity to spread.

Low consuming populations are pretty soon subjugated by 'americanism' and it is game over.

Most Chinese citizenism citizens do not try to assess the validity of their assertions but are imbued with gang mentality. But reminding that is useless.

Therefore they are ready to produce any kind of stories.

Never read somewhere, especially on this forum, on how Chinese citizenism citizens conciliate the reality of Chinese citizenism and their fabled version of what citizenism should be.

All I was able to collect is that most often, the Chinese citizenism propaganda is spread at all costs manufacturing deniability, exporting blame to exterior, and flight from self indiction.

But how they conciliate the massive resource grabbing, blobbing up, and their propaganda over Easter Island, well, they never told about that save gross rationalization.

Feel free to provide though.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 23:24 | 3210290 ShakaZulu
ShakaZulu's picture

There is no 4th stooge, therefore you do not exist.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 17:49 | 3209620 trav777
trav777's picture

buy some time for what, rape and murder?

where do blacks go that they do not forcibly occupy the lowest thug rungs of whatever socioeconomic ladder exists?

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:08 | 3208002 nonclaim
nonclaim's picture

Just shut electricity off for a week or two this coming Spring and in nine months the statistics will turn up nicely.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 00:11 | 3208534 r3phl0x
r3phl0x's picture

Not really, 50+ year old women cannot breed, no matter how much propaganda you feed them, or how long you turn off the lights.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:28 | 3208081 Stuck on Zero
Stuck on Zero's picture

The Japanese are reducing their population gradually and to the benefit of everyone.  The U.S. on the other hand will grow and grow with legal and illegal immigrants until the conditions are intolerable and then there will be a population cliff with a devastating collapse.  Your choice.


Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:43 | 3208144 Totentänzerlied
Totentänzerlied's picture

By that logic, Mexico and other sources of US immigrants are reducing their populations as well. Is that to the benefit of everyone?

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:45 | 3208146 Nassim
Nassim's picture

Very sensible people. Clearly, they have all read "Limits to growth" - even if their politicians have not.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:54 | 3208175 ToNYC
ToNYC's picture

Japan is the evolutionary test of the "saving face" idea and cultural conformity. Memo to Nippon: not working out so good, get over it and go "Gangham" style!

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:57 | 3208187 machinegear
machinegear's picture

I am tired of talk. Any other ZHer's want to go to Japan next week and fix this problem?

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 23:23 | 3210286 ShakaZulu
ShakaZulu's picture

I would be most happy to try!

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:57 | 3208191 duo
duo's picture

I thought raising my children with my own money was the way to go.  If I had done it the right way (Obama's way), I would have knocked up a couple of women and had the state raise their children in section 8 housing and public schools.

The state wants the middle class to have more kids, but at $250K a pop to raise them, not many are taking the bait  What can go wrong?

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 22:04 | 3208215 silverdragon
silverdragon's picture

The non productive old people dying off is a good thing.

Reduced population will be sharing same assets also increased living space for all.

Reduced energy requirements means reduced imports.

Less pressure on young as don't have to carry the weight of non productive old people.

Will probabaly result in an intelligent non race based immigration policy, it's about time..

Looks like a win for Japan and increased productivity.


Sat, 02/02/2013 - 14:18 | 3209240 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

That's denying 'american' nature.

The reduction in consumption is certainly not granted.

Especially as the youth ('american') might feel holding back.

Any new inch of consumption space released, those oppressed 'americans' will saturate.

30 millions 'Americans' in Japan might be too many.

Going back to the level of 'american' population that was on 1776, July, 4th might not even be enough at this stage.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 22:05 | 3208217 tony bonn
tony bonn's picture

one other side effect of de-population is increased dependency not only upon Depends, but also on foreign markets meaning the yen will become even more debaseable and trade wars more heated.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 22:50 | 3208358 Northern Lights
Northern Lights's picture

Various studies of demographic change in Japan have linked declining fertility to other changing social factors such as increased education, delayed marriage age, more economic opportunities for women, and the expense of raising children in modern, urban societies. 

Don't for get to mention that men are smarter and don't want to be used as ATM's,

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 22:59 | 3208359 steve from virginia
steve from virginia's picture




Japan, like all countries is massively over-populated with humans. The country would thrive as a non-industrial nation with 1/10 the current population giving desperately needed relief to natural services that require the absence of humans.


The idea of gigantic populations serves the interests of tycoons and plutocrats who play one person against the next for wage-gaiin. Massive populations also provide a putative market for industrial output. Both of these dynamics accelerate the unraveling of industry as wage/income returns are needed to justify more credit to the firm.


There is a gain from jettisoning industrial output because industry cannot meet- or bear its own costs ... when credit runs out the result is the bankruptcy ... of firms and the nation.


BTW, if the humans add bad luck to their demonstrated stupidity and greed the 'population issue' will be irrelevant as humans follow Dodo Birds, Passenger Pigeons and Mastodons into well-deserved extinction.



Sat, 02/02/2013 - 03:53 | 3208750 Notarocketscientist
Notarocketscientist's picture

There are 3 likely global outcomes:


1.  A massive culling of population as a result of disease, famine, war ...


2.  A total decimation of the planet as a result of all out nuclear war as billions fight for scarce resources


3.  Small elites backed by powerful militias will live like the kings and emperors of past centuries, there will be a small nobility of white collar workers, ZERO middle class... then massive numbers living, working and fighting to feed themselves. 


Sat, 02/02/2013 - 14:27 | 3209257 ZeroAvatar
ZeroAvatar's picture

A lot of body bags are going to be filled in the next 5-10-15 years.......the trick is to stay OUT of one as LONG AS POSSIBLE!!

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 22:58 | 3208379 silverdragon
silverdragon's picture

Japans declining population of unproductive people is positive for those productive people that currently support them.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 14:20 | 3209247 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

I am with you on that, bro.

We, Americans, are a special kind in humanity.

We are the first human beings in all times to have managed to make production an unlimited process.

Getting rid of the unproductive will solve all of our problems.

Signed: an American.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 22:58 | 3208383 toomanyfakecons...
toomanyfakeconservatives's picture

No wonder... have you seen the Japanese version of sex?

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 03:47 | 3208747 Notarocketscientist
Notarocketscientist's picture

You mean Bukake?

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 23:01 | 3208392 are we there yet
are we there yet's picture

Sadly women who are the brightest are converting their future children into professional careers today. On a long enough timeline they will breed to zero.

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 23:24 | 3208441 847328_3527
847328_3527's picture

Can a person be long in Kamikazes ?

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 23:35 | 3208466 Mister Minsk
Mister Minsk's picture

Japan will be extinct in a few months. We'll see more of it on the Discovery channel.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 00:19 | 3208551 williambanzai7
williambanzai7's picture

One can legitimately ask, who is the one deciding that it is a good thing to be grossly over populated? Anyone who has spent time in Japan knows what I am thinking.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 11:18 | 3209004 SAT 800
SAT 800's picture

Yeah, I agree; It 's a ridiculous thing to worry about. 97 million is not nobody; it's a slight reduction.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 01:25 | 3208649 chindit13
chindit13's picture

Somehow I think this lack of desire to reproduce will be a trait that is selected out of the population naturally over time.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 01:56 | 3208682 PGR88
PGR88's picture

We need to send over to Japan guys like Ray Lewis and Allen Iverson to impregnate a few hundred thousand women.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 02:26 | 3208711 dunce
dunce's picture

Their practice of limiting immigration preserves their culture and their race which is clearly superior to unnamed others. there may be an optimum number of people considering their land mass and amount of arable land. Most of our serious problems are directly related to historical bad choices in the composition of our population and it is getting worse. Multiculturalism and diversity historically been political and cultural disasters.  The USA only worked because in the past assimulation was demanded and bad actors were deported or jailed or faced capital punishment to keep the gene pool clean.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 05:19 | 3208790 besnook
besnook's picture

first of all, this guy and anyone who thinks like him is stupid. greater productivity with a smaller population means more wealth per capita. a good thing, isn't it?

the easter island model is the best model. right?

in a post post modern world japan is the leader. productivity gains reduces population as the need for labor declines. the closed door immigration policy shows the net result of progress in a controlled environment. is this the key to human survival? if productivity based upon technology reduces population and reduced population translates to reduced consumption of resources then does the world continue to thrive? or are humans on an inevitable path to easter island? is the path to save the world a hyper modernization that will naturally cull the population as productivity rises or is it a massive population destruction event and a return to an aboriginal indian lifestyle that will give humans the time necessary to save the species?

in any event, let's kill all bankers first to see what that does for the human race.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 08:26 | 3208861 Iam_Silverman
Iam_Silverman's picture


That's their problem.  Soybeans are loaded with phytoestrogens.  Turns all of their men into girly-boys.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 08:38 | 3208869 buzzsaw99
buzzsaw99's picture

They are smart not to have babies. The future is bleak.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 10:22 | 3208944 shovelhead
shovelhead's picture

Modern welfare states have no need of many children to support their parents in their old age so populations decline which eventually lead to a dearth of taxpayers to support an aging population over a span of time.

Most all of the modern (post WW2) welfare states are faced with the same population decline and the nations with the barest of safety nets are still expanding.

The state can design society all it likes but they can never overcome the fact that humans do what they do because it works, albeit not without frictions and imbalances.

One could easily make the argument that the notion of paying your way through your non productive later years from savings without a corresponding replacement in productive workers was a post war aberration brought about by an exponential increase in productivity via technology and efficiency and in the end an unsustainable model once those rapid income gains begin to diminish or flatten out by govt.s siphoning off a larger share and an increasing number of former third world countries sharing the pie.

Them chickens always seem to find their way home.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 10:28 | 3208947 flapdoodle
flapdoodle's picture

I learned Japanese and went to Japan many years ago and based on what I saw concluded that they live in the future: in some ways, their day to day living is like something out of Blade Runner or Minority Report.

The problems they've run into just anticipate the problems we will run into (if we are lucky - the alternative path is that we will all live in Detroit like in the movie "Looper")

From what I saw and have read, I've also concluded that the Japanese have a *really* serious problem in making decisions - leading to a society that is not very agile in confronting new problems, or bold enough to make painful decisions which might ruffle establishment feathers.

The results are Fukushima, Sony having lost their mojo vis a vis the Koreans, and a general lack of innovation from a population that is talented enough to do much, much better but has a schlerotic layer of clueless managers...


Sat, 02/02/2013 - 11:09 | 3208993 Agent 440
Agent 440's picture

This is why you don't keep old people alive and give them a vote.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 11:16 | 3208999 SAT 800
SAT 800's picture

I disagree on the basis that they're plenty of Japanese Schoolgirls on the Anal Porn sites. They'll probably all grow up to be Mitsubishi production line workers.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 12:35 | 3209097 southerncomfort
southerncomfort's picture

let them die. tell them to take the kardashians and beyoncee with them! Love how "nature" will ultimately take the trash out if we humans are too stupid to do it. Just dig that dynamic... ...


... "Masuoka claims the snaggletooth look gives his patients an "impish beauty" that is considered "endearingly attractive" to men. " "... because Japanese men feel so weak in the face of a stagnant economy and fast-shifting gender roles,..."

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 12:39 | 3209109 DrDre
DrDre's picture

On the other end, we know that there is no way for human population to continue growing indefinitely without fully depleting the planet's resources. It may be centuries away, but it is bound to happen. Population has to either stabilize or decline for the planet to remain sustainable. So some "disaster" now may actually be good in the long term for land-constrained Japan. Forget about the markets and stuff.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 13:05 | 3209131 Tekrunner
Tekrunner's picture

So, on the one hand, we all feel vaguely worried when we hear that the global population has passed a new billion mark (as it did in Oct 2011), but when a country's population starts to revert to a level that is probably more in line with what said country can actually support, it's a "demographic disaster" ? People are really indocrinated with that "growth in everything is good" philosophy.

Sat, 02/02/2013 - 14:23 | 3209250 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

It is a demographic disaster, considering the ponzi dimension of 'american' economics.

Sun, 02/03/2013 - 03:09 | 3210534 cape_royds
cape_royds's picture

1. Almost every country in the world has been experiencing a rapid decline in total fertility rates (i.e. the number of children the average woman bears during her reproductive lifetime).

2. Every developed country has a total fertility rate below the replacement level (the replacement level is about 2.1).

3. Japan is merely a more pronounced case of what is happening throughout the developed world.

4. While the aging/shrinking demographics of the developed countries is by now well-known, what most people still don't seem to realize is that many developing countries have sub-replacement fertility rates, too.

5. Mexico and Iran are both going to experience a Big Wave of Grey, as of course will China. Iran has a sub-replacement fertility rate despite its socially conservative, theocratic government!

6. What has been really stunning have been the plummeting fertility rates in India, Kenya, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt. Kenya's fertility rate is still high, but it's dropped by over two-thirds in less than 20 years.

7. World population is going to max out sooner, and at a lower level, than was ever predicted by experts.

8. We've gotten used to such terms as "peak oil." Get ready for "peak labour." For a long time many countries could simply import cheap people as a growth tonic. Those days are going to come to an end.

Sun, 02/03/2013 - 03:25 | 3210546 SmittyinLA
SmittyinLA's picture

The horror of larger apartments and less traffic OMG!


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