The Communist People’s Republic of China used to be infamous for its ruthless population control tactics that would make even hardened Planned Parenthood baby parts traffickers swoon. Forced abortions were only the most notorious part of China’s One Child policy.
And then China began wiping out its rural communities, resettling people into urban areas, and began getting worried about population numbers.
First, it signed off on two children and now it’s willing to contemplate three because it’s got some big demographic problems.
“When you create a system where you would shrink the size of a family and people would have to choose, then people would … choose sons,” Fong says. “Now China has 30 million more men than women, 30 million bachelors who cannot find brides. … They call them guang guan, ‘broken branches,’ that’s the name in Chinese. They are the biological dead ends of their family.”
Fong says the policy also led to forced abortions and the confiscation of children by the authorities. Looking ahead, China is also facing a shortage of workers who can support its aging population.
“Right now China has a dependency ratio of about five working adults to support one retiree. That’s pretty good, that’s a very healthy ratio. In about 20 years that’s going to jump to about 1.6 working adults to support one retiree,” Fong says. “The one-child policy drastically reshaped the composition of China’s people. So now they have a population that’s basically too old and too male and, down the line, maybe too few.”
But the population is also going the way of Europe and America with an urban aspirational middle class that’s no longer willing to make sacrifices. That has major implications for China’s future, demographically, economically, and militarily.
“When hearing the news today, my colleagues joked that unless the government rewards us with a flat and a degree for every single child we give birth to, the policy has nothing to do with us at all.
Chinese couples – especially women – are less willing to give birth these days. This is because the pressure is too high in today’s society. After giving birth, as a woman, you are not likely to return to work any time soon due to childcare. The more babies you have, the more you’ll have to sacrifice in your career.
In addition, when you become a parent you’ll have to think – and worry – about kids’ education in the future. Parents want the best of everything for their children, but the competition in China is way too fierce today.
In short, my generation of Chinese people is rather different from that of my parents. My parents’ generation lived for their children, but my generation lives for ourselves.”
That ought to sound familiar.
Two consistent patterns in Communist social transformation policies is that they have unintended consequences and are a lot harder to reverse than they were to initiate. Consider the state of farming in Russia after the Communists wrecked agriculture with collective farms.
The Left believes that its theories hold the master key to society. But those theories are a lot better at breaking a society than fixing it. Take a look at Detroit. It wasn’t that hard to break. Now try and fix it.
China’s Communist leadership has a long history of embarking on disastrous collective projects, but this time they may have inflicted a fatal blow on their own society.
Or, to put it another way, China spent so much time catching up to America that it succeeded all too well, producing a generation of selfish urbanites obsessed with consumer goods, outwardly nationalistic, but uninterested in giving up their creature comforts.
China has caught the same First World disease that already wrecked Europe, is destroying America, and is bringing down Japan. The price of trying to beat the western world is getting what you wished for.
Just ask Japan.