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Peak Japan? Population shrinks by a million census confirms

General discussions of the systemic, societal and civilisational effects of depletion.

Peak Japan? Population shrinks by a million census confirms

Unread postby GHung » Fri 26 Feb 2016, 09:47:43

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-35666274

Japan population shrinks by one million census confirms

New census figures in Japan show the population has shrunk by nearly one million in the past five years, in the first decline registered since 1920.

As of October last year the country has 127.1 million people, 0.7% fewer than in the last census.

Demographers have long predicted a drop, citing Japan's falling birth rate and a lack of immigration.

The rapidly ageing population has contributed to a stagnating economy and worries of increasing health costs.
Sharp drop-offs

Japan now has 947,000 fewer people than when the last census was conducted in 2010, figures released by the internal affairs ministry show.

Only eight prefectures, including the capital Tokyo, saw a population increase, national broadcaster NHK. reported.

The remaining 39 all saw declines, including Fukushima which saw the largest drop of 115,000 people.

Fukushima, site of the doomed nuclear power station, was hit especially badly by the 2011 earthquake and tsunami.

Japan has seen population growth for much of the past century, but this has been slowing rapidly in recent decades. The last census showed the population had completely stopped growing.

Friday's numbers mark the first time a decline has been recorded in the census.

Researchers are predicting a sharp drop-off in the working population and a simultaneous rise in the number of elderly in coming decades.

According to government projections, by 2060 about 40% of its citizens will be sixty-five or older, and the general population will be one-third smaller than it is now.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has made it a priority to boost the birthrate from 1.4 children to 1.8 children per woman, including improving childcare and tax incentives. Advanced economies usually require a rate of at least 2.1 for a stable population.


Should Japan continue to try and keep growth going after a couple of decades of stagnation? BOJ policies, NIRP, etc., don't seem to be having much effect. Is this a purely demographic problem, or a limits to growth thingy? Some, such as Kunstler have suggested that Japan will be the first major economy to return to a 'world made by hand', primarily due to resource and territorial constraints.

Are we witness to "Peak Japan". What other developed economies are facing the same fate?
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Re: Peak Japan? Population shrinks by a million census confi

Unread postby Tanada » Fri 26 Feb 2016, 10:12:11

With an aging population you really need a stable birth rate or you end up with every worker trying to support themselves and their elders as well as their offspring. If you focus just on elders by avoiding having children when you yourself get elderly you have nobody left to care for you.
I should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, design a building, write, balance accounts, build a wall, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, pitch manure, program a computer, cook, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
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Re: Peak Japan? Population shrinks by a million census confi

Unread postby onlooker » Fri 26 Feb 2016, 11:19:24

primarily due to resource and territorial constraints.

Yes Japan is facing both demographic challenges and resource challenges. They import way too much and thus are very vulnerable to disruptions is the global trade system. All in all though, it is better to have a problem with decreasing population rather than increasing one.
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Re: Peak Japan? Population shrinks by a million census confi

Unread postby marmico » Fri 26 Feb 2016, 12:42:40

What's the big deal?

The Japanese worker is more productive than the U.S. worker over the last 25 years.

https://2.bp.blogspot.com/-TjSCAcyVAoU/ ... on%2B3.jpg
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Re: Peak Japan? Population shrinks by a million census confi

Unread postby dolanbaker » Fri 26 Feb 2016, 12:46:08

No inward migration is the main reason for the population decline.
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Re: Peak Japan? Population shrinks by a million census confi

Unread postby GHung » Fri 26 Feb 2016, 13:09:56

dolanbaker wrote:No inward migration is the main reason for the population decline.


Per the article, at 1.4 children per woman, their birthrate is well below the replacement rate. Of course, those who consider limits to growth may consider that an optimum replacement rate (negative), despite the demographic and economic issues.

Maybe Japan can adopt a couple of million middle-eastern refugees to offset their native population decline 8O
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Re: Peak Japan? Population shrinks by a million census confi

Unread postby Revi » Fri 26 Feb 2016, 14:11:46

Some friends visited Japan and they said that the vast majority of the population is in the Tokyo metro area. They hardly saw anybody on the west side of the country. Japan is a phenomenon, and it is past now.

It had a nice run. We're next. In places like Maine the population is shrinking as well.
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Re: Peak Japan? Population shrinks by a million census confi

Unread postby dolanbaker » Fri 26 Feb 2016, 14:30:16

GHung wrote:
dolanbaker wrote:No inward migration is the main reason for the population decline.


Per the article, at 1.4 children per woman, their birthrate is well below the replacement rate. Of course, those who consider limits to growth may consider that an optimum replacement rate (negative), despite the demographic and economic issues.

Maybe Japan can adopt a couple of million middle-eastern refugees to offset their native population decline 8O

The point that I am making is that the population is in decline in most of the western world, it is inward migration that has hidden it almost everywhere except Japan.
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Re: Peak Japan? Population shrinks by a million census confi

Unread postby Tanada » Fri 26 Feb 2016, 14:44:26

pstarr wrote:
With an aging population you really need a stable birth rate or you end up with every worker trying to support themselves and their elders as well as their offspring.

This is no longer the world we live in and really hasn't been for generations, perhaps a century Tanada. Powered tool have granted individuals today the machine-muscles do the work of many folks from the past. Automation has further rendered this philosophy dead. It seems you might have internalized is the mindset of the empire builders. If we do not fast find an alternative to this system we will all certainly live in a degraded world. At best.


Elder care done properly requires a large number of nurses, nurses aides, candystrippers and Geriatric specialist doctors. Mechanization would dehumanize the golden years into a kind of living hell without human contact in any meaningful sense.
I should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, design a building, write, balance accounts, build a wall, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, pitch manure, program a computer, cook, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
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Re: Peak Japan? Population shrinks by a million census confi

Unread postby Tanada » Fri 26 Feb 2016, 15:35:57

pstarr wrote:I never meant to imply that elder care is not a preeminent necessity in a civilized world. I only questioned your (apparent?) assumption that other capable adults already unemployed by globalization/mechanization are not adequate for this crucial task.

I have always taken the stance that leisure, complementation, the arts, personal/private entertainment is far better than makework and enforced employment. I prefer both high culture and rock and roll to environmental degradation


I can go for that, I just fear the elderly getting shipped off to 'homes' where they are tended by soulless machinery without any regard for their emotional needs or mental stimulation. Especially since my father lived to be 85 and my mother is about to turn 86 so my odds of being elderly in a slow crash future are pretty good.
I should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, design a building, write, balance accounts, build a wall, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, pitch manure, program a computer, cook, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
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Re: Peak Japan? Population shrinks by a million census confi

Unread postby GHung » Fri 26 Feb 2016, 16:55:36

Tanada said;
"Elder care done properly requires a large number of nurses, nurses aides, candystrippers and Geriatric specialist doctors..."


In most cases that isn't until at or near the end of life. I know because my wife owned and ran a personalised elder care business for over twenty years. Generally a team of two alternating CNAs, perhaps three for 24/7 care. They took care of my Grandmother in her home until she died at 102 and were like part of the family. My Aunt (in her 70s-80s) filled in on weekends and sometimes took her to appointments, etc.. In many of these cases, my wife's staff were live-in, especially when there was no family available for support.

It wasn't unusual for my wife's staff to end up mediating and protecting the elderly from exploitation and abuse by family members intent upon exploiting their elders. My wife spent more than one day in court acting as an advocate or witness for her clients. She cared a lot, sometimes more than the family did. There are some pretty awful people out there who'll go after their elder's money and stuff, if not worse.

This isn't cheap; requires some income and/or insurance, but is a fairly large industry, one that essentially regulated smaller companies like my wife's out of business, along with changes in Medicare.

Of course, cases that require special or extraordinary frequent medical care generally require an in-patient environment or hospice, meaning family isn't involved in most day-to-day care anyway. Me? If I get to that point, I'll likely find a way to off myself; maybe dig a hole with the tractor, crawl in, and hope someone finishes covering me up before the coyotes dig me up.
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Re: Peak Japan? Population shrinks by a million census confi

Unread postby Hawkcreek » Fri 26 Feb 2016, 20:16:54

GHung wrote: I'll likely find a way to off myself; maybe dig a hole with the tractor, crawl in, and hope someone finishes covering me up before the coyotes dig me up.


How about soaking a couple of cords of firewood with diesel, crawling up in the middle of it, lighting it off, and using a dependable firearm for an early out before things get too hot?
That would waste a good gun, though.
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Re: Peak Japan? Population shrinks by a million census confi

Unread postby Rod_Cloutier » Fri 26 Feb 2016, 20:29:35

Sounds like a good place that Europe could send all those refugees that it can't deal with. Japan could use some new blood.
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Re: Peak Japan? Population shrinks by a million census confi

Unread postby ralfy » Fri 26 Feb 2016, 20:45:02

Has been going on for some time, with more industrialized countries looking for young immigrants in poor countries to work as nurses, caregivers, etc., for those growing older.
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Re: Peak Japan? Population shrinks by a million census confi

Unread postby Shaved Monkey » Fri 26 Feb 2016, 21:17:29

We should be celebrating that there will be less first worlders putting extreme pressure on resources.
Unfortunately Australia is growing as a fast as a third world country with lots of new shoppers to take up the slack .
Most are middle class former third worlders being converted into ravenous first worlders.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-02-16/b ... rd/7174506
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Re: Peak Japan? Population shrinks by a million census confi

Unread postby PrestonSturges » Fri 26 Feb 2016, 21:26:43

Tanada wrote:Elder care done properly requires a large number of nurses, nurses aides, candystrippers and Geriatric specialist doctors. Mechanization would dehumanize the golden years into a kind of living hell without human contact in any meaningful sense.
For folks from other countries "candy stripers" are hospital volunteers, although the red and white striped uniforms has probably changed. Candy stripper seems to a Japanese clothing company for teenage girls.
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Re: Peak Japan? Population shrinks by a million census confi

Unread postby Subjectivist » Fri 26 Feb 2016, 21:42:45

Yikes!
II Chronicles 7:14 if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
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