Japan in the Death Spiral

For years, Catholic pro-lifers have been warning that abortion, sterilization and contraception cause the collapse of an individual's morality and the destruction of families. Now, demographers are indirectly telling us that these evils are destroying entire nations and continents. Unfortunately, governments do not even acknowledge the root cause of the problem of the "demographic death spiral."

An impending white paper by the Japanese government tells us that the "foundations of communities" — police, fire and other basic services — will be threatened by the country's declining birthrate and aging population. This paper correctly identifies the source of the problem — that Japanese are simply not having enough children. For a nation to replace its population, each woman must have an average of 2.1 children per family. Japanese women average a disastrously low one child.

Japan's population peaked in 2005, and will plunge from its current 127 million to just 89 million in 2050 — a decline of thirty percent. Japan is currently the oldest nation on Earth (median age 43, twice the age of many African nations). Japan will continue to hold this dubious title through the year 2050, when the average Japanese will be 61 years old. Inevitably, more and more Japanese leaders are looking for the easy way out of the dilemma of "over-aging." On October 18 of this year, the Japanese Association of Acute Medicine became the first organization to recommend euthanasia for the terminally ill.

Melancholy signs of a declining population are everywhere in Japan. During Japan's 2007 Children's Day, the government soberly noted that the number of children in Japan has declined for the 26th consecutive year. Over the past decade, more than 2,000 junior and senior high schools have closed due to lack of children, but many are enjoying new life as elderly care centers. More than 60,000 teachers have lost their jobs because they have no children to teach. Elders of villages who traditionally call out the names of newborns at autumn festivals often have no names to call. More than 90 Japanese theme parks catering to children have closed. More and more pediatricians are switching specialties and becoming geriatricians.

 Saddest of all is the sight of elderly Japanese women cuddling Takara-Tomy's talking Yumel robotic dolls. These women buy these expensive dolls because they have no children or grandchildren to lavish their attentions on. The dolls, which are selling very well, tell their owner how much they love her and welcome her when she walks back into the room. Yuko Hirakawa of Takara-Tomy says that "many elderly people think the dolls are actual grandsons and granddaughters."

Some prefectures and cities have tried just about everything to entice young couples to have children. They have offered substantial cash bonuses to couples who have more than one child, and have even sponsored dances and "speed dating" parties to get young singles together. In 2006, the Year of the Dog, Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi urged women to "do as dogs do" and have large litters!

Unfortunately — and predictably — none of this has worked.

After all, if a government promotes "family planning" for decades, if it drills into the people's heads the idea that children are messy, noisy, expensive, and bad for the environment, once it has promoted and funded millions and millions of abortions, there is really no way back. As proof, an amazing 70 percent of young Japanese single women say they have no intention of getting married.

Babies are just too much trouble.

What is the solution to the vexing and lethal trend of "country-cide"? Some suggest massive immigration, but Japanese society is 99 percent ethnically homogenous and very xenophobic. It is not an exaggeration to say that many Japanese leaders would rather allow their culture to die than to be diluted or assimilated.

The only solution to the plague of depopulation is to rekindle the love of God and children in the people's hearts. The Japanese must undo three decades of anti-natalist propaganda with an intensive program of teaching the people the value of family, the beauty and joy that children provide, and the satisfaction of fidelity to a husband or a wife until death.

These are not religious values, these are human values, and they are the only answer to the death of a nation. Japan must learn this lesson if it does not wish the Rising Sun to set — forever.

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  • Guest

    In 2006, the Year of the Dog, Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi urged women to "do as dogs do" and have large litters!

    That would do it for me!  I can only imagine the advice for the "Year of the Rabbit"! 

  • Guest

    The economic miracle will soon become the economic disaster. Population decline is a reality in all the countries that have been pursuing excellence through the scientific and economic model. Japan is more acute because they’re island dwellers. Geography does contribute to making a people more xenophobic and selfish. In the long run nature has a way of filling the voids and vacuums. By God’s design it all seesaws but must return to a point of balance.

    Since the Flood, we’ve had plagues, wars and other disasters that decimate populations. Insurance terminology calls these “acts of God”; they don’t know what else to call them. In the case of population control these are “acts of man”. Attrition is the fruit of self-interest. It looks like God is allowing the selfish to choreograph their own demise. 

  • Guest

    Elkabrikir, you're in great form. I know we don't keep track of the animal calendar, but haven't we been in the years of the dinosaur for a while now?

  • Guest


    yes we are in the year of the dinosaur! CE is featuring an herbivore dinosaur find on its news page….I am the "cow dinosaur" right about now…for obvious reasons!


    Years ago I read  Children of Men by PD James (totally outside her detective mystery genre, and not to be confused with the inferior movie by the same name.)  In the novel, people carry around dolls for every stage of life since there haven't been births in a generation.  The infrastructure collapses, and euthanasia is enforced by the government including government structured religious ceremonies.  PD James was prophetic, but obviously not off the mark.  How tragic it is when parents harden their heart toward their children. 

  • Guest

    People carrying around dolls brought to mind the social experiment here (thank God not our school) with middle and high schoolers—carry around a baby doll and take care of it for a certain amount of time to learn how much time and effort a baby takes……then you will make wise choices when it comes to sex…..yeah, right…..you'll be sure to use contraception and know just where the abortion mill is in case the contraception doesn't work…..GREAT lesson in how much a child will interrupt your life…..


    I had to hold myself back….my husband too….when we saw the mother of an 8th grade boy taking care of his "baby" while he played basketball….


    Jesus, I trust in You!

  • Guest

    Ugh – another legacy of the famously selfish baby boomer generation.

    I am in a generation following the boomers, and folks my age sometimes joke how the boomers, who basically got everything they wanted handed to them on platter, nonetheless usually are bawling and moaning that they want and feel entitled to, well – more!

    And boomers have no plans of going quietly into that good night.  They will be as demanding in their dotage as they have been all their lives.  Also, because on average they did not have enough children to support themselves, their retirement will put a terrific strain on our system.  Also, because an astouding number of boomers either did not bother taking their kids to church, or were actively set against Christianity altogether, they did not teach their kids that because humans are made in the image of God and have an immortal soul, the lowest human among us has infinitely more value than other animals, and the idea of moral relativism, by the time my generation gets old enough to retire, because by then the boomers will have eaten it all, there is a very good chance that their kids will very frankly be tired of caring for the aged.  Again, due to the secular humanistic anti-life indoctrination they received from their baby boomer parents, they might well be all too interested in simply euthanizing old folks.

    Of course I hope that scenario will not play out, but we are in a risky time, and in addition to the internet and progress on environmental issues, boomers also deserve a lot of credit (or more accurately the blame) for this awful anti-life, society of death mess in which we now find ourselves.

    That having been said, it is up to all of us to pray, pray, and pray, and work for a better, kinder world.

  • Guest


    While much of what you say is true, please be careful about painting an entire group with a broad brush.  I tell my children that always and never are seldom ever true, so they should avoid them.  In the same way, your comment about [all] boomers is a bit over the top.  I and several friends of mine who were born at the literal tail end of the baby boomer generation (and I married someone from the next generation) do have several children (five for my family and this from the marriage of an only child to a child that was one of two) and are raising them under Christ's teachings.  In my case, my parents did try to have more children (they were teachers…they actually liked children).

    One encouraging thought with all of this might be that many of those who follow Christ see the value in a large family, so the influence of Christ can grow as these families grow, as well.  (My oldest daughter plans to have a large family…larger than ours, as a matter of fact.) 

    With Christ, we are never without hope.

    Blessings, Melanie

  • Guest

    You are of course correct Melanie, in that I should not paint with such a broad brush.  Also, re-reading my post, I did not intend to sound so morose; I do not always express myself as clearly as I should.  In Christ there is always hope and optimism.

    I do think however that sadly, the atrocity of abortion will likely be with us until the last of the boomers passes away and moreover, it will take a long time (several generations at least), and a lot of spiritual and educational effort both in the US and around the world, to at least partially undo the damage that resulted from the various social "revolutions" that raged in America during the 1960's and into the 70's. 

    Regarding the secular humanism that was foisted upon society, indeed it is one of the many bad effects of the "revolutions" of those years from which we still suffer, I always recall the line in Dickens' Christmas Story that (paraphrased):  'The children of Man are ignorance and want, while the children of God are goodness and light'.

    But again, you are very correct; God is love and Christ is our hope and really is the Way, the Truth, and the Light.

    Thank you for your comments and thoughts Melanie, and may God bless you and yours.

  • Guest

    God loves you .

    Melanie – I’m an epitome first-year (with the Billaries) Boomer – well, not quite ‘epitome’, unless being ashamed has epitomizing value . . .

    We’re a selfish, obnoxious, self-absorbed lot. KenB has the brush just all too right. You weren’t around for the disgusting 60s, were you? ‘Revolution’? How about ‘chaotic plunge’.

    I can blame our parents’ generation only so far. After all, we Boomers are now retiring, and have been purportedly ‘mature’ for some time now. Watch – ‘ignorance and want’ will only begin to explain their – OUR – entitlement whine. Lo, our too-few children, survivors of the Holocaust of the Unborn, encultured in violent solutions, just may ‘entitle’ the childish Boomers to euthanasia.

    Remember, I love you, too .

    In the Suffering of Christ, and in His hope of His Resurrection,

    Pristinus Sapienter

    (wljewell @catholicexchange.com or … yahoo.com)

  • Guest

    Thanks for the bravo Wljewell, but I am confident that most boomers will die peacefully in their beds.  Surely their children will care and provide for them well enough; they are their parents after all.  However given their preference for moral relativism and the sorry moral training many boomers provided their kids, the ones who need to worry are the subsequent generations of aged people.

    Having made it their business to rattle and/or destabilize society from one end to the other, having delighted in their own irony and cynicism and turning so many things upside down, and having left a wake of cultural and social destruction all their lives, it is not suprising the boomers will continue in this manner as they drive headlong into their golden years.

    The lack of a true understanding of community or patriotism, the undermining and/or sidelining of commonly held moral values and Judeo-Christian beliefs, and the weakening of the cornerstones of society, are indeed gifts that will keep on giving for decades to come.