Wintery Knight

…integrating Christian faith and knowledge in the public square

South Korea and Canada face massive demographic crisis

South Korea

Story from LifeSiteNews. (H/T Andrew)

Excerpt:

The Republic of Korea has signaled its willingness to work to reverse a heavily pro-abortion culture through various measures, including beginning to enforce an abortion ban that has technically existed in the country for decades, in order to address the severe demographic implosion that threatens the country’s economic stability, Korean sources report.

[...]Official data from the Ministry of Health indicates that doctors perform 350,000 abortions per year, while they deliver on average just 450,000 babies, meaning 43.7 percent of pregnancies end in abortion.

However, the actual number of abortions may be at least five times the official estimate. According to the Korea Times, Rep. Chang Yoon-seok of the ruling Grand National Party said that a National Assembly inspection in October found that the number of illegal abortions in Korea exceeds 1.5 million a year or roughly 4,000 babies aborted per day.

If the National Assembly’s estimate is correct, the nation of 48 million commits approximately the same number of abortions as the United States, which has 300 million residents. Presuming the numbers of births recorded by the Health Ministry remains the same, that would mean approximately three out of four pregnancies in South Korea end in abortion.

Perhaps we need to undo anti-family policies like legalized abortion, unilateral divorce, high tax rates and a massive social programs. These policies discourage marrying and child-bearing, which prevent the creation of the next generation of taxpayers who must pay for these expensive welfare-state programs.

Canada

New research paper from the center-right C.D. Howe Institute. (H/T Andrew)

Excerpt:

The twin demographic challenges of an aging population and slow workforce growth will affect Canada’s Atlantic provinces more acutely than other regions of the country, according to a study released today by the C.D. Howe Institute. In “Stress Test: Demographic Pressures and Policy Options in Atlantic Canada,” authors Colin Busby, William B.P. Robson and Pierre-Marcel Desjardins warn that many years of low birthrates and youth outmigration mean that the Atlantic region faces diminished workforce growth and a fiscal squeeze as fewer taxpayers support a growing bill for public programs.

Massive numbers of elderly people retiring and very few young workers available to pay the taxes for their health care and retirement entitlements. Something has to give.

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Massive changes needed to avert demographic catastrophe in European Union

Story from LifeSiteNews.

Excerpt:

According to the report by Norway’s Institute for Family Policies abortion rates in Britain have leaped by a third among unmarried teenage girls and abortion is helping to age the population of Europe. Without a massive shift to family-friendly policies, the pattern of increased abortion and increasingly aging population will inevitably lead to the collapse of social welfare benefits, and, ultimately, to the bankruptcy of Europe’s cradle-to-grave socialist welfare state.

Presented to the European Parliament on Wednesday, the report said that the situation of the family in Europe is “a desolate panorama.”

“Europe is plunged in an unprecedented demographic winter and has become an elderly continent, with a large birth deficit, fewer marriages and more of them broken, homes emptying.”

“The aging population, critical birth-rate, escalating abortions, the collapse of marriage, the explosion in family breakups and the emptying of homes are the main problems of Europeans,” the 2009 Report on the Evolution of the Family in Europe said.

[...]The dropping European birth rate, the report says, with its concomitant increasing health and pension costs, will lead to increases in public expenditure to care for the aging population and the eventual collapse of public revenues, leading finally to the bankruptcy of the welfare state. The average birth rate of EU countries is now 1.38 per woman, well below the replacement rate of 2.1 births per woman, even in relatively fertile countries like France.

Without a significant shift in family policies in all EU countries, the report predicts the result will be “catastrophic.” Starting in 2010, the population of Europe overall will begin to fall from 499 million to 472 million by 2050 and every third inhabitant will be over 65.

[...]Other indicators show the number of marriages, especially first marriages, is down and divorce rates are up. There are 1 in 4 fewer marriages than in 1980 and the marriage rate has fallen in 9 out 10 countries. One out of every 3 children (36.5 per cent) is born outside marriage. In some countries the fall in marriage rate has been around 50 per cent since 1983 and there are over one million divorces a year, the equivalent to one marital breakdown every 30 seconds.

You can take a look at the actual numbers here. It’s a mess. This should convince fiscal conservatives to support social conservatism. Abortion and the destruction of two-parent families imposes massive social costs on society, and it grows government to deal with the fallout. Government pay for all the social programs, welfare, police, jails, etc. But it also has to regulate broken families via the courts. It makes no sense to abandon morality and expect government to stay the same – it will have to grow.

Maybe we shouldn’t have let the secular socialist elites run things? Could it be that believers in traditional morality and small government were in the right? Could it be that there is a price to pay for believing in materialism and naturalism, and jettisoning morality for hedonism?

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