Editorial: Three-child policy reveals signs of an impending miscarriage | Apple Daily HK
By Koo Lap
The Central Committee of the CCP made the call to “optimize” childbirth policy with a 50% increase in the number of children allowed from two to three. What a gesture. “Optimized,” or “improved”, however you call it, it looks like the people are not appreciative and even slammed the new policy as outdated: with the high cost of living and high property prices, it is expensive to raise and teach children. People are already maxed out with one child, let alone three. For the young and upcoming generation, even if they are not adopting “lay-flatism” of “not wanting to kneel, yet cannot stand”, would much rather own a pet than have children. It is evident whether the new policy will “induce labor”. The question is, however, why must the childbirth policy be “optimized”?
The “labor induction” policy followed closely behind the newly published census results which showed that China’s demographic structure is not looking optimistic. Although the population has not fallen as previously rumored, its growth has declined for four years straight; last year, newborns made up only 12 million, which is one-third less than the 17.86 million in 2016. With the younger generations shrinking, it is expected that stamina for economic growth will follow. How can childbirth policy not be quickly “optimized” as a remedy?
Other than a weakened economy, the younger generations will not be able to replenish the aging population. In the decade between 2010 and 2020, people aged 60 or above increased from 13.3% to 18.7%. The impact is a drop from 70.1% to 63.35% in the working population aged between 15 and 59. Economic growth is bound to slow down, while the need to care for the retired population has surged. Equally, the kind of societal pressure this could induce is obvious. If not handled properly, God knows what kind of critical situation this could trigger in society. In an authoritarian state where stability trumps everything, this warning is deafening. What caused this drastic change to the population structure?
There is always a reason. The one-child policy that was in place since 1979 touted that “Kill! Abort or miscarriage! Anything but give birth to it!” With this unprecedented policy of extermination of humanity, here comes the bitter fruit. Other than producing a whole generation or two of domineering and rude little emperors that brought about unmeasurable far-reaching damages to morality, there are also distorted gender ratios that stemmed from the prioritization of male over female, which is another blow to the fertility rate and planted the seed of population decline.
The CCP realized that trend of China’s decline before it could get rich five years ago, therefore relaxed the one-child policy to a two-child policy, hoping to promote birth. Math told us that the average fertility rate of women must reach at least 2.1 to maintain population stability; otherwise factors such as premature death, illnesses, and infertility would eventually drag down the total population, reduce the labor force, and slow down economic development. Therefore, although the two-child policy seemed much more lenient, it could not reverse the decline in population and the rapid trend of aging.
In other words, the two-child policy implemented five years ago was already lagging behind reality. Seeing the reactions from the people, it looks like today’s three-child policy is equally useless. The authoritarian dictator thought that everything from economic development to the fertility of the people is all under his control and he could alter and adjust however he wants. Whether it is “laying flat” or reducing confrontation, do the authorities not realize that ordinary people have their own minds? When are they going to wake up from their midsummer dream and return to people their dignity and freedom?
Even if all signs point to an impending miscarriage, the dictator is still hypnotizing himself and burying his head in the sand. In the “Democratic Life Conference” held on Dec. 25 to 26, 2018 by Xi Jinping, the post-conference statement emphasized that “In his leadership of the party and country in a new era, General Secretary Xi Jinping is examining and grasping the increasingly complicated situation of internal and external developments. By leading the entire party and people of all ethnic groups to march into the new era, his strategic judgments are farsighted, and his political leadership is mature and skilled. He is clear and firm in the people’s position, and strong and determined in the historical accountability. He is fully proving his ability and capability as the core of the central government and the party.”
The core of the party-state is truly remarkable. One-child, two-child, three-child, all came to naught. Is this the “farsighted”, “mature”, or “skilled”? Who needs a violent confrontation to bury an authoritarian regime? The collapse of these childbirth policies of ruining humanity has proven once again that the biggest enemy of the arrogant, ignorant, and delusional authoritarian regime is the dictator himself, who has time and again shot himself in the foot.
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