Japan faces 'extinction' in 1,000 years, researchers say

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  • 6

    HarryHillLover

    Unicharm said Friday that sales of its adult diapers had “slightly surpassed” those for babies in

    Wow, talk about every cloud has a silver lining. A huge demographic bomb drops, but we can sell nappies!! What is the point of this article? Anyway, a whole nation won't just stop having babies. I think it's trying to sensationalize (apart from the diaper thing, of course????)

  • 2

    Olrik

    Yes, the world faces a dark future...

  • 12

    cadmium31680

    This is a silly prediction. In the next 1000 years a lot can change, and Japan won't just idly sit by as the population dwindles. Also they don't seem to have incorporated things like half-Japanese and quarter-Japanese people into their population model.

  • -8

    sfjp330

    In 1000 years, temperatures and sea levels wil probably rise considerably and millions, or even billions of people from the tropical and temperate zones will be forced to migrate in search of food, fuel and shelter. Japan will be largely uninhabited, except for Northern Honshu and Hokkaido. The rest of the Japanese population will have migrated north to Siberan coast or northern parts of Alaska and Canada to find safe harbor from the impact of global warming.

  • 0

    Lunchbox

    An interesting thought, but I don't believe it. As long as humans continue improving our technology at the current rate we have been, then we will have achieved immortality easily within 1000 years, so the Japanese race has nothing to fear. Nano technology, Stem cell research etc, I think we'll have immortality within about 2-300 years from now, then we'll have much bigger problems. Bigger barriers for the Japanese Race will be War and Global Warming. Imagine in 300 years time, when they look back at us and laugh about how we used to use nappies.

  • 0

    Schopenhauer

    Some don't worry about the decreasing population of Japan since Japan is originally not a large country and still holds a population of about one hundred million. What is the appropriate population of Japan?

  • 3

    cactusJack

    When sea levels rise, and cities are underwater, having less children to feed will seem like a gift.

  • 3

    GW

    I laughed when I read the title, I mean how WRONG can you get!

    I kinda see what this dude is trying to do BUT this prediction wont do anything, WHY, because its WAY WAY TO OPTOMISTIC! Thats why.

    If Japan doesnt re-invent itself WHOLESALE I predict Japan will hit 1.35 births WAY before another 50yrs, if things dont start turning around a lot more young people will stop having kids & the majority being born will be totally un-planned births & we already see how bad those babies have it now, it will only get worse.

    If this guy really wanted to get attention he shud have knocked off a zero, make it 100yrs, wud be more likley to be closer to the truth at the rate we are going now!

  • -1

    herefornow

    and Japan won't just idly sit by as the population dwindles.

    cadmium -- really? Name me a single major issue/problem that Japan has faced head-on and dealt with proactively in the past two or three decades?! Japan has become world-renowned for ignoring issues and simply sweeping then under the carpet -- in the hopes they will magically disappear. How do you think they got a debt ratio of 200% of GDP, or two decades plus of basically zero growth? And since this issue involves potentially compromising the sacred Japan DNA/nationality, you can bet this will get kicked down the road for a long time.

  • 3

    Tamarama

    Is this really what 'academics' in Sendai are coming up with?! You have to be kidding me.....

  • 2

    kaminarioyaji

    Tamarama - I hear ya, but this looks more like a calculation they knocked out on the back of a napkin over lunch...

  • 5

    Farmboy

    Japan has very little immigration and any suggestion of opening the borders to young workers who could help plug the population gap provokes strong reactions among the public.

    Presumably, strong reactions among the public will decrease as the public disappears.

  • 2

    ManBearPig

    I don't think the birthrate will remain stable. In fact, I think it will continue to decline, and so its actually a bit worse than predicted. But the birthrate is an average and some people are at extremes. Japan will alway have children, but the population will certainly plummet and the greying society will cause lots of problems.

    One factor I cite in the decline birthrate is that this country is getting to be damned cold. It used to be the coldness of society was isolated to out in public. But Japanese have taken the cold society to heart, and now people are cold even in private. Its a bad way. Its why the sexual frequency rates are also way down.

    Attitudes about PDAs, touching, hugging, kissing and sex really need to be loosened here. What I see is that from a very young age, Japanese are trained to be inhuman in those departments and they are reaping the results. I once had an elementary school student who would run up to me and give me a hug every day. It was very nice and she was a sweet girl. But the teachers put an abrupt stop to that and without so much as a word to me. They just "had a little talk" with the girl and that was that. Now she will most likely grow up to think that touching is bad, because I never saw a Japanese teacher explain what the problem was, but just say "Don't do that! Dame!" The child is left to think what the problem was, and ultimately, they oversimplify on their own. And that is how we got to have this cold Japan of today.

  • 5

    Scrote

    I'm quite relaxed about the "extinction" of the Japanese. I'm sure the last person left in the country will be a bureaucrat inventing "rules" to the very end.

  • 1

    Virtuoso

    No, the last person left in the country will probably be a very old man engaged in removing radioactive debris from Minami Soma City.

  • 0

    smithinjapan

    In a thousand years most of Japan will have been turned upside down by shifting plates. Japan will cease to be 'Japan' (at least the way many think of it), long before then. It's not like it'll still be the way it is today if there is one sole remaining 'pure blood' Japanese or anything. Hell, we'll be lucky if humanity isn't extinct by then.

  • 3

    SushiSake3

    My scientific modeling carried out amid an atmosphere of historic reflection and future-focused innovation atop a rubbish bin outside my local Lawson konbeni paints an historic future for this nation.

    At 1437 hours on March 12, 2051, the number of robots will surpass the number of full-blooded Japanese.

    Oh, can someone pay me to reach more science- based conclusions like this? I want to buy some cup noodles for lunch...

  • 1

    Virtuoso

    In a thousand years most of Japan will have been turned upside down by shifting plates.

    More like 200,000 years I think, and happening very gradually. Based on the fossil record, most parts of this archipelago is pretty old. Tokyo Bay (to name one example) took on its present shape 23,000 years ago. Mt. Fuji is estimated to be about 8,000 years old.

  • 0

    Hagusuffix

    Haha! Amusing, but an unrealistic estimation, I'd wager. I assume somebody's considered it already, but did anyone thinking about resource and living space limitations? The way I see it, by the time the next economic boom begins (assuming there's enough young people to find a niche to start it), there should be enough room for births to bounce back. "Nature will find a way."

  • 0

    Hagusuffix

    Pardon, replace "thinking" with "think."

  • 4

    tmarie

    Well start making it easier for people to have kids? Is that so freaken hard to understand? Combination of lack of job security, lack of support for working mothers, the old boy's club and their sexist policies, men not wanting to support a family on just his income... And many not being ABLE to support a family on just one income. The older generation is leeching from the young and well, 1000 years? I think that is generous the way things are going now.

  • 6

    zichi

    I think the prediction by the researchers has one too many zero's and the pension funds will have dried up long before that?

  • 1

    sasakama

    That's interesting report showing that Japan's gonna head for the complete extinction. Having disasters happening recently, I would say that the rate of speed toward the extinction should be boosted. Only thing we can do to avoid the extinction is to birth more babies! Why not the government plan pragmatic solutions? Enriching support programs for working woman is key success factors. That would be important.

  • 0

    UnagiDon

    Predicting pretty much anything societal beyond a few decades is an exercise in wishful thinking - technological change, social change, disasters and wars have a huge impact and cannot be predicted. To even be able to guess about the pension situation in 30 years is highly uncertain, who knows what kind of medical advances will have extended our lifespan by that point.

  • 0

    tomatoflight

    At some point the government will have to REALLY provide a 'rebate' for having kids. That and this guy fails to realize Androids and robots will be part of society by then.

  • 3

    UnagiDon

    Oh and for all the simplistic thoughts as to why this is happening in Japan, keep in mind that this is hardly unique to Japan and so not some damning indictment of Japanese society. Fertility rates are this low in many countries, even those with immigration, and are much worse in some of Japan's neighbours;

    Germany 1.41 Japan 1.39 Greece 1.39 South Korea 1.23 Taiwan 1.16 Singapore 0.78

    It's a complex issue, it's a global issue, and simplistic answers based on your problems with Japan are hardly likely to provide an answer.

  • 0

    Bgood41

    Most nations need more young peoples to pay taxes and hopefully sustaining the revenue. Maybe certain scientific means will be used to increase the needed young generation in the future. Like it or not, the planet earth will be extinct in the far future when the sun run out the hydrogen. At the meantime, we all can enjoy Japan. Cheers.

  • 0

    zichi

    Free iPad for every new born child!

  • 3

    zichi

    If we don't take care of Mother Earth, in 1000 years, there could be no planet to live on.

  • 1

    LHommeQuiMent

    There was an urban legend saying that natural blondes will be extinct in 200 years or so. Actually, we don't know when natural blondes will be extinct, if ever.

    The same for the extinction of "Japanese people" (which begs a definition, by the way). These soft extinction theories are nothing but mathematical extrapolations and do not take social and biological factors into account.

  • 0

    Tuntematon Sotilas

    I understand that Japanese are concerned about immigration, and those fears are reasonable if you took a look at Europe recently. I would suggest perhaps try and increase the birth rate by offering tax incentives or something similar to this. Perhaps trying to get Japanese overseas back to Japan? Instead of being idiots and importing people from a completely different and violent culture, Japan can increase its population safely!

  • 0

    johninnaha

    Supposing that some time within the next 1,000 years, the birth rate changes?

  • -2

    noriyosan73

    Sooner than that if Japan doesn't stop covering up its food producing land with industrial parks, private homes, and other development. The great arch from Kobe to Osaka is a classical example.

  • 0

    HighLama

    It's not a religious prediction. The study clearly mentions the nation's people could theoretically become extinct if the rate of decline continues. Of course the rate of decline could vary depending on what really happens over the next millennium.

  • 2

    tmarie

    Unagi, the difference is that the countries you listed, with the exception of south Korea, have plenty of immigration that is helping them. Japan and south Korea are screwed. No kid's, nearly zero immigration and a huge aging population. The more educated a woman, the fewer kids she has. Why?! I could give many suggestions but mine is the lack of child care and career worries. Give more educated women child care and job sercuity and I think more would have kids.

  • -1

    wontond

    Populations ebb and flow. I think Japan's population will continue to decrease until the the threshold is met where resources once again become accessible/affordable to the masses, and then it will probably grow again. It probably won't happen for a few generations. I think the current population growth experienced in South Asia and Africa will also experience the same decline, but that probably won't happen for another half century.

  • 0

    Christopher Blackwell

    A thousand years is a very long time. So don't panic, yet. Find ways to lower the cost of living enough to give people the possiblity of having a family. Find ways to shorten the work week so that they have enough time to themselves to actually have kids and to raise them. That takes some time and quality time at that and you can't do it if both are working long work weeks, or if even only one is working the typical long work week. People need time to live, including to be awake enough to enjoy sex, as well asmoney enough to take care of children. In an economy and a work week that is not family friendly, how can you expect anything else?

  • 0

    Joseph Garrett Baxter

    We as humans will be lucky to be around in 1000 years. There will be some to survive who live in the upper Himalayas as they have done for millions of years waiting out these cycles of doom and gloom.

    But scientifically speaking, when there is a decrease in population eventually the population will grow back again. The society will change and people will start having babies again and then another cycle will occur. More foreigners will come to Japan and mixed babies will be made in plentiful supply.

    No worries about this except for the decrease in population by 50% within the next 50 or so years.

    So much can happen in 1000 years. Those researchers are probably just using a simple mathematical formula based on the half life of Japanese using current rates. The government probably sponsored this to scare society into having more babies.

  • 1

    Eduardo Gonzalez

    We better promote the baby boom as its still early for the threat

  • 0

    Farmboy

    To tell the truth, just about every place on earth faces extinction for one reason or another. In Japan's case, considering how few jobs there are, I'm not sure that having bunches of future unemployed is such a good idea right now. Better to wait until the economy starts turning around, and then encourage couples to vacation in a nice climate near a beach.

  • -5

    Hôjô Sôun

    NeverSubmitMAY. 12, 2012 - 07:41AM JST The main global issue of the 21 century will be underpopulation, not overpopulation.

    100% agreed. Conquering the world in the late 21st century will be easier than ever in human history.

  • -1

    Cricky

    Adapt or die, Darwin theory at work. Somehow the adaption gene was lost on these special people. So be it.

  • 0

    Ranger_Miffy2

    One obvious immediate step would be to abolish the "mandatory" retirement limits. Let people work as long as they can/want to and keep contributing to the economy and society. Meanwhile, a lot will happen in 1000 years, for pete's sake.

  • 0

    Weasel

    Considering there's the usual depressing infant / child / parent abuse story of the week here on JT, I'm surprised the rate isn't accelerating.

  • 0

    Thomas Anderson

    Are they seriously speculating what's going to happen in 1000 years... we might all be extinct by then.

  • 2

    Rick Kisa

    It may not even reach 1000 years if one factors in projected effects of nuclear radiation and waste due to the faulty and old nuclear plants and more to be constructed in Japan

  • 0

    UnagiDon

    tmarie;

    Unagi, the difference is that the countries you listed, with the exception of south Korea, have plenty of immigration that is helping them. Japan and south Korea are screwed.

    I doubt that Taiwan has a lot of immigration, and Singapore has lots of expats (which is different). Germany, even with substantial immigration, has a comparably low fertility rate to Japan, meaning that if you take out the effect of immigrants (who tend to have a higher fertility rate), then Germany actually has a lower "native" fertility rate than Japan. Why is that, I wonder?

    The more educated a woman, the fewer kids she has. Why?! I could give many suggestions but mine is the lack of child care and career worries. Give more educated women child care and job sercuity and I think more would have kids.

    Bingo! This applies to Japan, Germany, and all developed economies, it's certainly true in Canada. And that's my point, this declining fertility rate is a developed-world problem, not a Japanese one. Immigration is certainly one solution, but hardly an easy one, and may not even be needed on a large scale.

    I think a smaller population is not necessarily a bad thing. We are too mired in the old models of economic development that say big pop = bigger GDP = better economy. We have moved beyond that, and the future economies of the world should look at individual wealth and GDP, and so long as relative standard of living can be maintained, individuals should be better off in a smaller-sized populace. THAT is the real challenge, for Japan and all developed countries, not reversing a shrinking population. Japan is simply a little further ahead of the curve than others. Adaptation is what we should be doing, not attempting to reverse it.

  • 0

    rranta

    I think its about time the Japanese start having kids again. Even if the economy is bad, you can have kids. 2 per couple. over here in the states I think we have the opposite problem I think.

  • 0

    tmarie

    I doubt that Taiwan has a lot of immigration, and Singapore has lots of expats (which is different). Germany, even with substantial immigration, has a comparably low fertility rate to Japan, meaning that if you take out the effect of immigrants (who tend to have a higher fertility rate), then Germany actually has a lower "native" fertility rate than Japan. Why is that, I wonder?

    Taiwan has mainlanders heading there, you are nuts if you think Singapore is just expats. LOTS of immigration going on there and expats do stay from time to time. You're talking about Germany, did you read what else I wrote in my post? The more educated the women, the lower the birth rate. Germany is no exception to this. UK, Canada, US.. the people have kids for the most part of lower educated immigrant females - as you said. Educated women are well aware of what happens to their jobs when they have kids... No need to wonder, there has been plenty of research done on the topic.

    This IS a problem particularly for Japan because a) little immigration and b) they have the oldest average marrying age in the world. I don't think a smaller population is a bad thing either - if you can support the number of elderly who are taking from the system. Japan doesn't have enough people to prop up the health care system (which has numerous issues as it is) and the pension system. Why women who haven't paid a dime of their own money are allowed to take from it is beyond me. Something needs to change. Either make it easier for women to marry, work and have kids or cut back on all the freebies and aid the old folks get. They are living longer and certainly haven't paid anyone near as much as they are taking.

  • 0

    borscht

    Sometime between now and 3011, another country will discover these islands are largely uninhabitated and will 'discover' them; much like Columbus discovered the northern hemisphere. Then the other country will exploit the land as they see fit, intermarry with the locals, import their culture and language and voila! A new- and unique - 'Japanese' culture will emerge.

  • -1

    sf2k

    weirdness

  • 0

    johninnaha

    To get an idea of just how far 1,000 years is into the future, take a look at how much has changed in the LAST 1,000 years.

    The population of the WHOLE PLANET 1,000 years ago is estimated at 275 million.

    http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/

    This shows you how ridiculous it is to base assumptions on statistical "data" like this.

  • 0

    presto345

    Irrelevant study.

  • 3

    oberst

    Japanese ladies of child bearing age, do your duty, say YES !!

  • 1

    Laguna

    I was just sitting at the dock of the bay, watching the tide slip away - and then, I thought, my God, if this trend continues, there will be no ocean remaining anywhere in the world!

    Yup, just sitting at the dock of the bay, wasting time.

    (Begin whistling.)

  • 3

    m6bob

    Just think, to solve this problem, mass sex is needed on all child-bearing capable Japanese women. Hospitals have to be operating round the clock and millions of OLs will be on maternity leave!

  • 0

    Gloryjean Salvacion

    Oh I do make a baby for a future dont worry,but ill stop my good job the equivalent,this country many problems credit 962 billion yen imagine 752 yen a person equivalent wow I did bankruptcy already and then i have still credit.I saw many Japanese already bought mansion in other countries coz thier money at the bank no interest here in japan i did too.by the way Japan is the best to live quite place.

  • 0

    Tsuchi Rai

    Declining birthrate, another problem for japan

  • 0

    Antonios_M

    To get an idea of just how far 1,000 years is into the future, take a look at how much has changed in the LAST 1,000 years. The population of the WHOLE PLANET 1,000 years ago is estimated at 275 million. http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/ This shows you how ridiculous it is to base assumptions on statistical "data" like this.

    Exactly. Don't take me wrong, the declining population is indeed a very serious issue and it should not be ignored. However, the attempt to project the population of a country in 1000 years is ridiculous. I can understand though, if it is a symbolic act in order to draw more attention to it.

    It is equally surprising that despite the immigration, Greece has the same fertility rate as Japan, which should really ring the bells, regardless of the severe financial crisis.

  • -1

    Ranger_Miffy2

    Sorry, with 7billion on the planet now, birth rates have to decline somewhere. Here is just as good a place to start as any.

  • 0

    ol_borgeaud

    How can anyone make prediction for 1,000 years? The humanity will change drastically much before due to biotech. Life duration and reproduction will become obsolete words in these future dictionaries. Like it or not but I believe more in Matrix projections.

  • 0

    Hybrid4

    @UnagiDon

    I think a smaller population is not necessarily a bad thing. We are too mired in the old models of economic development that say big pop = bigger GDP = better economy. We have moved beyond that, and the future economies of the world should look at individual wealth and GDP, and so long as relative standard of living can be maintained, individuals should be better off in a smaller-sized populace. THAT is the real challenge, for Japan and all developed countries, not reversing a shrinking population.

    It seems though that we're stuck in our economical system, and that it's going to be quite painful to get out of it, if it's possible the way you describe it (which would be ideal). Governments resort to immigration anyway, and when a certain level is reached, the local culture is in danger of disappearing. Not right away, but we're already seeing tensions in Europe. I believe that's what they worry about, and it's natural. People want to preserve their culture. (but of course, I'll be called a racist by the Benetton ideology worshippers...)

  • 0

    Hybrid4

    @Ranger_Miffy2

    Sorry, with 7billion on the planet now, birth rates have to decline somewhere. Here is just as good a place to start as any.

    Birth rate declining in a small country will definitely lead to the gradual disappearance of it's culture. Don't you like Japan for its particularities? Why not hope for a decline in an overpopulated country?

  • 0

    Hybrid4

    Did they include in the calculation an estimate of people dying from tsunamis and earthquakes? More disasters means less people making babies. I's be more worried about that, but there nothing can be done...

  • 2

    Thunderbird2

    This is yet another of those headline grabbing stories that the media like to trot out. The sun will die in a million years! Panic!! Anything can happen within that 1000 years... as someone said (and was ignored) the birthrate could easily change and the population of youngsters could start to increase rather than decrease. Nothing is certain... it's a scare story. That's all. As for the world being overpopulated... you could fit the entire population of the planet into a space the size of Paris.

  • 1

    yourock

    I think the real purpose of this is to make Japanese wake up and do something, for the national.

  • 0

    LH10

    OMG NOOOOOOOO I LOVE JAPANESE!! "Children’s Day public holiday on May 5, 3011 as there will be one child" lol! i can just imagine the tumbleweed rolling by LOL

  • 0

    roberto60

    This is because he wants at all costs to change the style of Japanese and European,I like you just as you are

  • 0

    telecasterplayer

    1,000 years? I don't know, is there time to prepare?

  • 0

    kabukideath

    Japanese radio could play more Barry White music. He was credited with increasing America’s birth rate during his reign on the top of the music world.

  • 0

    Jerome_from_Utah

    Whoever came up with the "Zero Japanese Children" projection failed STAT 101. Dr. Deming must be rolling over in his grave with laughter after seeing this conclusion. This trend is valid only for the near term and suggests that the number of schools may decline or reduce in size but only for a few more decades. Then, the operating rules change as it has in the past. Japan is known for "turning on a dime" as it did in the early 1700s when the doors were slammed shut and then reopened in 1854 with a host of adopted foreign ideas. Then there were the post-war years starting in 1945 (MacArthur and Deming) with another host of changes. I have no idea what the future changes will look like but there is no doubt they will happen.

  • 0

    Laurenço Iscariot Shells

    This sounds like a great pick up line at some Akihabara shop.

  • 0

    tmarie

    Japanese ladies of child bearing age, do your duty, say YES !!

    Whew. So I guess all those foreign women married to Japanese men who live in the country are off the hook! Yippppeeee!!

  • 1

    Jim Fisher

    Wow a bit sad and I am not even Japanese. Its never the people who cant feed themselves (Ethiopia for example where they have 12 kids on average), its the Japanese. Sad really

  • 1

    Nozomi Suzuki

    @Olrik "Yes, the world faces a dark future..."

    I see what you did there.

  • -1

    garomakaikishi

    only japan faces a dark future not the world.

  • 0

    J-Boh

    The great thing about thousand-year predictions is that they can't be proved wrong. For a very long time, anyway.

  • 2

    ReikiZen

    Thanks JT I needed a good laugh today. I think this is being a bit to optimistic. To maintain an economy the size of Japan's with even a few hundred thousand people would be near impossible. Let's dig a little deeper shall we.

    When you figure in Tokyo & the greater Tokyo Megalopolis region. My guess it would be somewhere north of 35 million people. This is by far the largest in the world. In contrast New York City & it's greater Metro area lies somewhere around 19 million give or take a couple percentage points.

    Last I checked Tokyo in and of itself is around 12-14 million. I then realized that most everyone lived in an area area of around 2,187km. If my math is right that would be just around 0.6% of the total land area of Japan. That is the whole of Japan I am speaking. That just boggles the mind when you think about it. To break that figure down a bit. For every 1km area of Tokyo there are give or take around 6,000 people. My math is probably a little off but it is pretty close to this. So of the total population of 127 million people. That would be approximately 26 to 28% live in the greater Tokyo area. That is a hell a lot of people in a very small space. While there can be some argument that Tokyo can stand to slim down a bit. The question is how much before it starts to put a strain on normal operations?

    I would be interested to know what the city employment figures are for Tokyo? (Operations, Public Works, Power, hospitals etc.) Basically goods and services which are necessary for any city. Let alone a metropolis like Tokyo to function on a day to day basis.

    You add this with all the other major cities in Japan and you quickly realize that these numbers are far to low. Japan would have likely collapsed under it's own weight well before you ever reached extinction. Many industrialized nations have been witnessing a low birth rate as of late. While in the other countries this trend has more or less reached a summit, the birth rate has somewhat stabilized. In Japan it continues to fall with no end in sight. This has resulted in a steep decline in the proportion of the population responsible for the production of goods, services and a rise in the elder population. The dependency ratio, the number of workers supporting the elderly, is continuing to shift, putting a strain on the economy. This is due to a combination of low fertility rates and higher life expectancy. Many women have entered the professional workplace and prefer to pursue their careers rather than start a family.

    Reduced living spaces, insufficient childcare facilities, increasing cost of children's education have acted as deterrents for raising a family. Add this to one of the highest life expectancies in the developed world & you have a major problem.

    At this rate, it is feared, that one in every four Japanese would be above the age of 65 by 2030. This shift would have taken place in a much shorter span of time than in any other developed country. The economy will not be able to get enough skilled work force for its manufacturing and services sectors. Labor would become costlier, increasing the cost of production. There will be more elders to tend to. Which in turn will strain the medical and pension systems.

    The social sector expenditures by the government will have to increase. In addition to a dwindling work force resulting in lower purchasing power and reduced demand for goods and services. The domestic market will shrink, production will fall, as will the governments revenue, forcing it to manage higher medical and pension expenses with a lower income. This doesn't bode well for a country which is already among the highest in the world to live in. What needs to happen as you might have already guessed is Japan needs to open up!!!

  • 2

    ReikiZen

    Part 2

    Immigration is a sensitive topic here but is no longer an issue which can go idle much longer. Even the US could not have survived very long without immigration. They likely wouldn't even be a country let alone a world power. In the global market economy it is no longer possible to sit in isolation and expect things to improve or just happen so to speak. If Japan wishes to remain among the living. They are going to need to make some sacrifices for the greater good. I don't want our ancestors someday to say:

    This is Japan a once proud & prosperous country. A people with so much to give to the world yet never ever realized it.

    It seems the only path to harmony is at the end of an hourglass. I don't know about any of you but that is a world I don't want to live in. Japan deserves to exist just as much as anyone else. Through my years in Japan I have learned a great deal about myself & the world around me. Behind the isolationist facade is a rich, cultured, funny, weird, fascinating but somewhat ignorant people. Which is not all that unlike the rest of the world really I guess.

    We all fear what we don't completely understand or can relate to. You fear of loosing what knowledge you have gained. You fear of loosing your culture, history, language, ethnicity & ability to distinguish yourself from everyone else. To find meaning in a world which has few answers.

    Yet those who will survive are the ones which can adapt to their changing environment. Japan is far from perfect, yet is a place I can't imagine being without. Yet it must evolve along with everyone else or fade into memory. I hope that in a thousands years Japan is not only here but in even a more visible light & force in the world.

    If there are more advanced civilizations out there. I would believe they have gotten past what has kept us earthbound all these centuries. Japan isn't the only ones that will become extinct in a thousand years as I doubt our species can stand each other for that long.

    It is going to take something bigger then ourselves to achieve that goal. This won't happen through war, isolationism, but through our ability to see past our differences. Our ability to put our race, ethnicity and indifference behind us & come into a greater realm of existence. There is a fundamental view of the world. It says:

    When you build a thing you cannot merely build that thing in isolation, but must repair the world around it, and within it, so that the larger world at that one place becomes more coherent, and more whole; and the thing which you make takes its place in the web of nature, as you make it.

    Sorry for all the cerebral brain-drain here but Japan is only the first of many which will eventually destroy itself if we don't change our ways. Thank you JT for yet another post which continues to drain my life-force. Now people see why I don't use Twitter or Facebook lol. I would have been banned from there ages ago. :b

  • 1

    JadeDragon

    Yet another great post their Reiki. I think we all can agree with that. JT is great that way and is why we have such a large online community here. So don't sweat it you are in welcome company. Family takes precedence over career in many cases in Japan. Japanese women are expected to quit their jobs when they have kids usually. Yet it isn't an equal partnership and are expected to carry most if not all of the family responsibilities. The system really needs to change here making it easier for married couples with kids to get the support they need. You are pretty much on your own which creates more problems then what it's worth. Marriage is becoming less & less desirable as it creates to much stress for couples. You ask the average young person what their thoughts about marriage are here & most have a negative opinion of it. They say it is to expensive or is to stressful. When you add in the corporate work structure which doesn't allow for time off usually when your wife is pregnant doesn't help matters either.

    The government needs to get off it's but and start addressing these issues which is only adding to this growing nightmare. As far as to your question about Tokyo public work force. NYC is somewhere around 350-400 thousand. At least last time I was employed with them many centuries ago lol. So Tokyo would likely be double that or maybe just around a million would be my guess? No doubt this will be a problem when you add in a significant elderly population to the fold. Hospitals are already in financial trouble not counting senior care. Of those 65 or older, Japan is the highest in the world with 23% versus 13% for Hong Kong and 8% for China. That is due to lower birth rates as you and others have mentioned. Having worked in the heath care procession myself. I know a little about this. Dementia rates in Japan roughly double every 5 years once an individual crosses 75 years of age.

    In Japan, 24% of the elderly who need care will need it for 1-3 years on average. Around 58% will need care for more than 3 years. Japan has three types of nursing homes (which not all Japanese even know how they are different): There are special nursing homes for the elderly (publicly funded for those with no families and without financial means of paying for their care), healthcare at facility for the elderly (also publicly funded but with some payments via insurance), paid nursing home with care service (a very small public subsidy). The explosive growth in this area has to do with the Japanese governments opening up of this sector to private investment. This category however is not straight-forward due to restrictions by the Japanese government. Some of the reforms in this area are necessary because there was an excess of supply in the Japanese market for senior care facilities. Why is this so? People who did not really understand the needs of the aging Japanese population designed the facilities, go figure. All in all change is definitely needed no doubt.

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