[quote]The Chinese are having a re-think on this one now as it has resulted in a high level of boy children, and very spoilt ones at that.
That's not strictly true. The Chinese have acknowledged a problem but they aren't going to remove the policy because they understand that the policy isn't the problem. (They are smart enough to realise that if they hadn't had the one-child policy then the country would currently have 400 million MORE people in it than it does just now!) The problem they realise they have is a cultural one that values boys over girls. It is THAT they are looking to change, not the policy itself. It speaks wonders for their acceptance of the facts of life that they are continuing the policy, especially while the smug 'more-advanced' countries continue to give my money to other people just to encourage them to create another environmental drain.
Equally a low birthrate is only bringing about pension/old age funding problems because for decades we have allowed the birthrate to go unchecked. It could have easily been kept in check and been kept stable such that the population level only fluctuated slighty, but unfortunately we had an industrial revolution in the 1950s and people got greedy, with their greed came having lots of children. It wasn't a biological urge that caused the birthrate to shoot up, it was access to money! That's about as selfish as it gets. So here's a thought.
Say we increase the birthrate to bring about more workers to fund our pensions, well:
1. In 2070 these births will have lead to an even larger number of people receiving state pensions, potentially double/triple current numbers.
2. Medicine will also have advanced and so people will easily live to an even older age than now (90s instead of 80s say).
3. This even higher amount of elderly people, many of whom will be increasingly infirm due to growing levels of diabetes and heart disease causing amputations to be necessary, will put a heavy financial burden on the healthcare and social system.
4. The people that are of working age in 2070 (the grandchildren of the original births) will have to bear that financial burden through higher taxes and limited medical and social provisions, all the while with the threat that there will be no money in the pot for their own pensions.
5. So what will they doin 2070? Will they encourage even more childbearing to produce even more workers to pay for their own pensions?
Can you see that encouraging more births is just a vicious circle because the people that are born will
get old, that's not up for debate. They are not just today's children and tomorrow's workers, they are the future's elderly and pension recipients!
The only solution to the current problem is that at least one generation (preferably two) agrees to take the financial hit for the current ageing population, and I don't mind if that generation is mine. Creating more children just delays the problem by passing onto our children an even worse
ageing population problem than we are experiencing. Is that fair? Do we want that for our children? Anyone who loves their children will wish to prevent this happening to them. Genuine love for children means being prepared to take the hit yourself to prevent them have to take a worse hit.
The "having more children" idea doesn't just affect the payment of pensions and old age care, it also causes housing shortages meaning we will be packed into ever decreasing-sized houses. Roads and public transport will be so jammed the cost of travel will sky rocket. Technology is advancing so job creation won't increase as quickly as the working age population increases and unemployment will increase. All of this will further increase the divide between rich and poor, quality of life will most definitely become something purely for the rich. Parks and open areas will disappear for housing and, coupled with the above, this will cause poorer all round health and more mental health problems. Not least we will have almost no privacy whatsoever.
There is NO solution to the ageing population and anyone that believes there is just doesn't want to face up to reality. The governments know it and have discussed it with the top scientists but encouraging people to have less children and our generation taking a financial hit isn't a vote-winning policy so the politicians are avoiding it, even though it is in the best long-term interests of the planet and its population!
When listening to politicians it is important to remember that none of them have your long-term interests at heart, they cannot afford to because if they model policy on long-term benefit they won't get voted back into power (even if they can still do another term) to continue with their policy. WE are the only ones that can take care of our long-term wellbeing so WE have to tell politicians that this is what we want and be willing to vote for a policitian even when his/her policies will personally cost us financially.
So next time you hear a politician mention anything about a way to fix the ageing population problem, ask yourself whether his idea is a vote winner (it will be)? If it is a vote winner then it can categorically be ignored because modern democracy systems are set-up such that governments can only get into and stay in power if they concentrate purely for on our short-term wellbeing. Our democratic systems are failing us.