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Japanese Companies Switch to Full-Time Workers as Population Decreases

Fertility Decline Could Cause Global Security Crisis

CIA Director Warns of Russian Unrest

300 Schools to Close in Ontario because of Birth Rate Crash

Russia Needs More Than Gimmicks to Boost Population

The Key to Increasing the Russian Birth Rate?

JAPANESE COMPANIES SWITCH TO FULL-TIME WORKERS AS ABORTION CAUSES SHORTAGE. There was a time in Japan that major corporations and small businesses could get away with hiring part-time or temporary employees. But with a worker shortage prompted by decades of legalized abortions, Japanese companies are now forced to hire as many full-time workers as possible.

Aging employees are now retiring, — including those born prior to 1949 when the Asian nation legalized abortion.

The net effect is an economy that shrank 2.4 percent in the second quarter as companies have a difficult time attracting enough employees to get the work done.

Now suffering from a lack of people thanks to the decades of destroying its next generation, Japan has a shortage of workers to replace the baby boomers who are entering their retirement years.

The Bank of Japan index underscores the problems by showing that the demand for labor is at its highest level in 16 years.

Kotaro Tsuru, a senior fellow at the Research Institute of Economy, Trade and Industry in Tokyo, talked with Bloomberg News about the problem.

"The era of companies just adding temporary workers is probably over,'' he said. "Full-timers are crucial for companies to increase productivity, accumulate knowledge and develop human resources to expand.''

Companies are offering higher salaries, better benefits and flex-time to attract workers away from competitors or into new sectors of the economy.

Abortion has resulted in a demographic nightmare for the island nation.

It is the first nation to register more annual deaths than births and, by 2030, the National Institute of Population and Social Security Research estimates the Japanese workforce will shrink 20 percent.

With fewer babies born over the years, the agency says 40 percent of Japan's population will be 65 or older by 2050 — more than doubling the current ratio.

Barry McLerran, producer of "Demographic Winter," a documentary on underpopulation problems, sees the abortion-underpopulation problem playing out in Russia as well.

The nation doesn't have enough workers to keep its economy strong and he says that may have contribute to its recent actions in Georgia.

"Russia has one of the lowest birth rates in the world at 1.17 children per woman," he told "A nation needs a birth rate of 2.1 just to replace current population."

"Because of its low birth rate and early deaths — due to disease and other factors — Russia is losing approximately 750,000 people a year," he explained.

Most demographers generally believe that Russia's current population of 144 million will fall to 115 million by 2050. But Murray Feshbach, with the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, thinks Russia's population will drop to 101 million and could go as low as 77 million by mid-point in this century.

Related web sites:
Demographic Winter –
[August 25, 2008, ertelt, Tokyo, Japan,]




FERTILITY DECLINE COULD CAUSE GLOBAL SECURITY CRISIS: No country that sinks to a 1.5 fertility rate for more than a few years has ever recovered.  A recent study by a prestigious national security think tank warns that "rapid and extreme" demographic change due to falling birth rates in the industrialized world may increase security risks in the coming decades.

The study also warns that such demographic changes could undermine the "ability of the U.S. and its allies to maintain global and national security." The report says the world is irreversibly headed for "demographic transformation of historic and unprecedented dimensions" that will not be corrected "in our lifetime."
Meant by its authors as a "wake up call", "The Graying of the Great Powers: Demography and Geopolitics in the 21st Century" was published by the Washington DC-based Center for Strategic & International Studies. The report argues that the influence of the developed world as a whole will contract as its workforces and economies shrink. Among developed states, however, the influence of the United States will increase because of relatively robust fertility. At the same time, the role of "global governance" through the United Nations and other international institutions may decline as the crisis promotes the role of the sovereign state in addressing the consequences of demographic collapse. 

Two miscalculations by demographers are uncovered in the report: that mortality and aging would plateau, and that fertility rates would stabilize at replacement level of 2.1 children per woman. Neither happened, and the result is what the authors call a "low fertility trap."

According to the report, no country that sinks to a 1.5 fertility rate for more than a few years has ever recovered. Pro-natal policies such as child care and baby bonuses adopted by some European countries are likely too little and too late. While immigration may help mitigate the drop in working-age population, fertility decline also tends to cause public opposition to it. Furthermore, a "culture of low fertility" has taken hold in Europe that will make a return to larger families unlikely. 
The authors also believe that alternate waves of small and large-sized generations, called "echo booms," will create shocks to social systems and stall economic development. And while demographers have credited fertility decline for East Asia's economic "miracle," the report finds that this "demographic dividend" was the exception to the rule. Forced demographic transitions can even squander the dividend and cause destabilization, it says.

Among its recommendations, the report called for raising fertility by increasing prenatal benefits, improving the economic prospects of young families, and helping women balance jobs and children. It also offers diplomatic and military steps the United States can take to prepare for its inevitable leadership role as Europe's indigenous population wanes in the tumultuous decades ahead. [By Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D., NY, June 26, 2008; 26June] 







CIA DIRECTOR WARNS OF RUSSIAN UNREST. CIA Director Michael V. Hayden warns of a "trans-Atlantic divide" on terrorism. "While we share the view that terrorism is an urgent danger, we disagree on how best to confront it," he said. (AP)

Russia's declining population will require Moscow to import foreign workers, increasing racial and religious tensions in the former superpower that still has thousands of nuclear weapons, Hayden said.

Mr. Hayden, an Air Force general, also said in a speech yesterday in Manhattan, Kan., that differences between the U.S. and European governments over the Iraq war and the war on terrorism could divide the traditionally strong trans-Atlantic alliance system.

China's national goals and its military buildup also pose challenges for the U.S. in coming years, and China will turn "adversarial" unless Beijing plays a more constructive role in world affairs, Mr. Hayden said at Kansas State University.

On Russia, Mr. Hayden warned that Russia is facing "demographic stress" with a population that will decline by 32 million in the next 40 years, almost one-fourth its current population of 141 million.

"To sustain its economy, Russia increasingly will have to look elsewhere for workers," he said, noting that world demographic trends — most future population growth will occur in poor and Muslim countries — means these workers will increase ethnic conflict.

"Some immigrants will be Russians from the former Soviet states. But others will be Chinese and non-Russians from the Caucasus, Central Asia and elsewhere, potentially aggravating Russia's already uneasy racial and religious tensions," he said.

U.S. intelligence officials called Russia's long-term demographic outlook "bleak," with the combination of an increasing death rate and falling birth rate causing the population to decline by an expected 10 million people by 2020.

"The working age-group will be hit particularly hard," one U.S. official said.
Russian men die on average by age 58 and about 62 percent of men smoke, while the average Russian man consumes 15 liters of pure alcohol annually. About 20 percent of the mortality rate for men is due to unnatural causes such as alcohol poisoning, suicide, homicide and transportation accidents, the officials said.

Women average 1.2 abortions per one birth in Russia, and for every 10 marriages, six end in divorce. Since the 1990s, only about one-third of Russian children are born healthy and 13 percent of live births die by age five.

Russia is facing an increase in racially motivated crimes against those considered non-Russians. Nationalist and neo-Nazi groups have been blamed for killings of Uzbeks and other workers from former Soviet republics in the Caucasus and Central Asia. The human rights group Sova Center said 53 people were killed and 160 wounded in hate crimes in Russia this year. By contrast, 17 such killings were recorded in the first four months of 2007.

Critics say the extremist sentiments are the result of Moscow's turn away from democracy and toward authoritarian rule, under Russian President Vladimir Putin and his successor Dmitry Medvedev.

The security of Russia's nuclear arsenal and the prospect of weapons falling into the hands of Muslim terrorists in the event of a major ethnic conflagration or breakdown of Kremlin authority has been a major Western security concern since the end of the Cold War.

On Europe, Mr. Hayden said in his speech that a "trans-Atlantic divide" could emerge over disagreements between Europe and the U.S., which he called "only symptoms of an underlying shift brought about by the end of the Cold War."

He cited the differences between the U.S. and Europe on terrorism and related matters of intelligence and law-enforcement systems — subjects on which the U.S. and Europe share a common liberal democratic tradition.

"The truth is, nearly two decades after the fall of the Berlin Wall, America and Europe still are grappling with how best to manage the security risks of the post-Cold War world," he said. "So, for example, while we share the view that terrorism is an urgent danger, we disagree on how best to confront it."

"The United States believes it is a nation at war — a war that is global in scope, and requires, as a precondition for winning, that we take the fight to the enemy, wherever he may be," Mr. Hayden said.

In contrast, most of Europe views terrorism as an internal problem with solutions to be narrow matters on domestic security.

"When there is a direct threat to their people or interests, European governments work with each other and their allies, including the United States, to disrupt it," he said. "But they tend not to view terrorism as we do — as an overwhelming international challenge. Or if they do, we often differ on what would be effective and appropriate to counter it."

Divergent views on threats and tactics will likely impact U.S.-Europe relations for the rest of the century, Mr. Hayden said.

"Managing the disagreements and tensions that arise in the absence of a unified vision will complicate what has traditionally been America's easiest relationship," he said.

On China, Mr. Hayden said that while differing views exist on China's direction and motivations, he views China as a competitor not an "inevitable enemy."

"There are good policy choices available to both Washington and Beijing that can keep us on the largely peaceful, constructive path we've been on for almost 40 years now," he said.

China's rapid and large-scale military buildup is based on Beijing's understanding of U.S. military action in both Persian Gulf wars, and the development of advanced weaponry, he said.

"While it's true that these new capabilities could pose a risk to U.S. forces and interests in the region, the military modernization is as much about projecting strength as anything else," he said, noting that China is "determined to flex its muscle" through military power.

The buildup is "troubling," he said, "because it reinforces long-held concerns about Chinese intentions toward Taiwan."

China's global behavior is "focused almost exclusively on narrowly defined Chinese objectives," Mr. Hayden said.

"We saw that in the country's dealings with Sudan, where protection of its oil interests was paramount," he said.

During a question-and-answer session after the speech, Mr. Hayden accused Iran's government of facilitating the killing of U.S. troops in Iraq by its covert supply of arms and explosives to insurgents.

He also said Islamic terrorists continue plotting attacks against the United States from safe havens in northern Pakistan, including the possible use of nuclear devices. He added that a primitive bomb that disperses radioactive material, the so-called "dirty bomb," is "more within the technical reach" of terrorists than a conventional nuclear blast.

[By Bill Gertz, May 1, 2008,]

300 SCHOOLS TO CLOSE IN ONTARIO BECAUSE OF BIRTH RATE CRASH. Plummeting birth rates have resulted in the closure of over 300 schools in Ontario and half of the province's school boards have 90,000 fewer students than they did six yea

rs ago. 300 schools are slated to be closed in the province simply because there are not enough children to go into them according to a report by People for Education.

"Much of the funding that school boards receive is based on numbers of students," the report said. "As a result, fewer students equals less funding, fewer programs and, in many cases, closing schools." The losses in this report are in addition to the 110 school closures in Ontario between 2004 and 2005.

Four years ago, University of Toronto economics professor David Foot called then-record low birth rate the "revenge of the birth control pill." Foot, the author of 1996's Boom, Bust and Echo, a book on Canadian demographics, said the widespread use of artificial contraception was responsible for fewer children being born in the 1960s and 1970s. This left fewer women of child-bearing age for the next generation, today's mothers.

The number of live births for every 1,000 people, plunged by 25.4 per cent between 1993 and 2005. Despite slight increases, Canada's total fertility rate in 2005 was 1.54 children per woman, an increase of only .01 per cent, but which, nevertheless, is the highest rate since 1998. The latest report from People for Education estimates that there will be 500,000 fewer students in Canada's schools in the next 10 years.

The Ontario Ministry of Education has predicted that by 2010, total elementary and secondary school enrolment will drop by nearly 100,000 students from 2002 numbers.

Read related coverage:

Maclean's Cover Story Warns Canada's Low Birth Rate Leading to Demographic Crisis

Ontario Population Crisis: 110 Schools Slated for Closure
[24Apr08, Hilary White, Toronto,]



RUSSIA NEEDS MORE THAN GIMMICKS TO BOOST POPULATION. A leading U.S. post-abortion expert notes that Russia faces a severe underpopulation problem because of the staggeringly high number of abortions. Dr. Theresa Burke, the founder of Rachel’s Vineyard Ministries, a group to help women with the medical, mental health and spiritual issues they face after an abortion, says the Russian government’s efforts to reverse the ongoing birth dearth in the former Soviet Union will not succeed until the trauma of abortion is addressed. “In Russia, 70 percent of pregnancies end in abortion,” she told “In a country where the average woman undergoes three-to-eight abortions, the problem goes beyond a dependence on abortion as birth control. There’s a deeper undercurrent at work here.” Burke added: “After working with thousands of women at Rachel’s Vineyard abortion healing workshops and retreats, it’s become clear that women who abort and don’t experience an effective healing program are more vulnerable to repeat abortions. The initial trauma of the degrading and painful procedure causes a level of detachment; the abortion experience is so unacceptable that the mind struggles to acknowledge it. This numbness leads to a dysfunctional lifestyle of drug abuse, relationship problems, and multiple abortions. Until the woman’s emotional pain is addressed and acknowledged, the cycle of abortion just repeats itself.” Burke concluded: “If Russia is to recover from the ravages of abortion, the government needs to do more than offer financial incentives to give birth. It needs to dramatically increase the availability of healing programs like Rachel’s Vineyard so that women and men can both begin to heal from the complicated grief of losing so many children.” [19Dec08,, #4497, Moscow]


The Key to Increasing the Russian Birth Rate?  Healing the Traumatic Aftershock of Abortion. 
By Kevin & Theresa Burke
The Russian government declared 2008 to be the “Year of the Family” to fight the decline in population resulting from the highest abortion rate in the world with nearly 70 percent of pregnancies ending in an abortion.  Authorities in the southern Russian City of Novorissiysk scheduled a “week without abortion” in an effort to combat the country’s high abortion rate.
 Government policies to encourage child bearing have had little effect to reduce the high number of abortions. Despite all the pregnancy perks and childbearing incentives now being offered, women in Russia are not biting the bait to breed.
 Dr Theresa Burke the founder of Rachel's Vineyard Ministries explores the dynamics of “Traumatic Reenactment,” the repetition of traumatic themes, feelings and actions as a hallmark indicator of trauma in her book Forbidden Grief, the Unspoken Pain of Abortion.  
Dr Burke explains:
 In order to understand the Russian population problem, it is essential to understand the psychological dynamic of traumatic repetition.  This is directly connected to the phenomenon of multiple abortions.
In the United States nearly half of all abortions are repeat procedures…in Russia the conservative estimate is that Russian women average between 3-8 abortions.  While it is true that many Russians view abortion as a form of birth control, there is a deeper dynamic at work here. 
During trauma the feelings and knowledge of what is happening are so unacceptable that the mind refuses to acknowledge them. The trauma becomes fixed at a certain moment in a person’s life – dissociated from consciousness – and provides the material for subsequent post-traumatic reenactment.
 Without healing and grief work following the initial abortion loss and the degrading and painful procedure, women are susceptible to cope with their painful feelings through the use of drugs, eating disorders, alcohol, drug abuse and promiscuity.  These behaviors frequently lead to another crisis pregnancy, and abortion is once again seen as the best solution.  Repetition is the greatest indicator of trauma. 
With each abortion the individual becomes increasingly numb, more detached from their hearts, more disconnected from hopes and dreams for the future and susceptible to patterns of relational abandonment, ambivalence over motherhood, depression and anxiety.  With each abortion there can be a distorted sense of mastery over the traumatic feelings…they may not be aware of feelings of loss or grief and not even be aware of a deeply entrenched self-destructive pattern of aborting new opportunities for love and life.
 In many ways, women really do experience their pregnancies and their unborn children as part of themselves. When the woman destroys her pregnancy and developing child, she is also destroying an extension of herself.
If those in power want to lower the abortion rate and allow Mother Russia to recover from the ravages of abortion’s toll, there is a need to drastically increase the number of healing programs like Rachel’s Vineyard so that women and men can begin to heal from this complicated grief caused by the loss of so many children.  Incentives won’t make women want to reproduce.  Only healing can do that – and bring resolution to the trauma.
[Vine & Branches, January 2009]