Old folk are dancin'! 8d
February 27, 2003 10:08 PM   Subscribe

Demography is destiny Alan Greespan in Senate testimony discusses the implications of an aging population. While the US is getting older, other countries are relatively young. Can immigration and technology provide, as Greenspan says, a "potent antidote for slowing growth in the working-age population," or are such projections academic?
posted by kliuless (5 comments total)
kliuless - I don't know if immigration and technology can completely redress this --- but I think that Adoption can close the gap. Sure there are many U.S. kids languishing bereft of parents. So what? New, perfect babies command a premium.
posted by troutfishing at 11:40 PM on February 27, 2003

Italy really has this problem.
posted by rudyfink at 12:43 AM on February 28, 2003

Troutfishing: Um, do you mean adoption of foreign babies as a form of immigration? Because kids don't disappear just because they've not been adopted.

The point is that in all "developed" nations (except the U.S.) the birth rate is below the replacement rate, meaning without immigration from places which still experience growth the population will decrease in the future =and= demographically shift older. Simply put, somebody has to have babies.

In any case, I find it interesting that birth rates have gotten so low in some countries -- down to 1.1 kids per woman in some countries -- without any real attempts to coerce women into not having kids. Simply providing economic opportunities for women, as well as reliable birth control and abortion for when it's not reliable, was enough to reduce birth rates; as well, kids are an economic sink in developed nations, so people have little incentive to have very many of them if they want to be financially well-off.
posted by meep at 3:33 AM on February 28, 2003

Simply put, somebody has to have babies.

Not everybody agrees with that sentiment.
posted by SteveInMaine at 5:34 AM on February 28, 2003

There is a paper here called 'THE GLOBAL AGE HAS ARRIVED', by Neil H. Snyder (a prof at Univ of Virginia) which focuses on population and demographic trends and what it means for certain industries and countries. Chock full of data. I ran across it a while back and the ideas involved keep coming back to me...
posted by john m at 7:15 AM on February 28, 2003

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