Golden years are looking grim

“Golden years are looking grim” was the title of a January 7, 2009 article in the Edmonton Journal (A13).  The subtitle of that article in the Journal was, “Countries around the globe face massive social upheaval and financial hardship as their populations are slowly, but surely, getting older.” The article was a copy of an article that was published Jan. 4, 2009 in the Washington Post, under the title: “The World Won’t Be Aging Gracefully. Just the Opposite.”

The title that the Edmonton Journal gave that article is somewhat misleading.  The fate of the elderly population sector is an important part of the discussion on the consequences of the culture of death with the deliberate goal of shrinking the world population down to between 500 million to a billion people.  The important aspect of that is not so much the shrinking of the resources for the elderly as is the cause of that problem symptom, the rapidly shrinking size of the working population sector.  That population sector will reach the point where it must and will decide whether the elderly can be allowed to live.

Yes, you understood that correctly, compulsory euthanasia is just a few years off.  It is either that we do it in an orderly fashion or that we let the elderly live in squalor and have them starve to death without adequate health care services.

That is not stressed in the article.  Other things in the article are assumptions based on pure speculation and not on an objective evaluation of alternatives.  For instance, Neil Howe and Richard Jackson state in their article that “In 2030, young people will have the future on their side. Elders will have the votes on theirs. Bold new investments in education, the environment or foreign assistance will be highly unlikely,” and that “With each new birth cohort smaller than the last, the typical workplace will be top-heavy with graybeards.”

It seems quite likely that in a market in which demand is falling due to rising taxes for those who work and due to seniors not being as eager or able to pay for what they don’t need, as working people are forced to pay ever higher taxes to support the elderly, while the size of their work force is shrinking due to falling birth rates as well as increasing unemployment rates, the workers supporting the retirees could easily come to actively resent the controlling voting power of the elderly as well as seeing them as robbing younger people of jobs.  Working people could easily begin to feel that they are serfs and indentured to non-productive elderly parasites.

After all, the inconceivable, abortion – the deliberate killing of children about to be born, was made to become acceptable, desirable, legal, then government-funded and even compulsory through peer pressure and government decree.  It is a logical progression that, if children about to be born are seen as an inconvenience and preferably killed, the killing of the old and feeble at the other end of the age range will appear to be a desirable solution to an ever more oppressive tax burden and a declining standard of living.

Unfounded liabilities are increasingly becoming a more and more severe challenge.  They result from a change of fiscal policies for neglecting the securing of the funding for future payments due out of social safety nets.  Konrad Adenauer was one of the early proponents of that policy change.

“People will always have babies” was what German chancellor Konrad Adenauer said in 1957 when he defended the reform of the German pension system to a pay-as-you-go scheme. With that judgment he destroyed the arguments of those who doubted that the system – based on the so-called generation contract – would last forever. In the same year the total fertility rate in West Germany was 2.36 children per woman, but by 2010 that rate had fallen to only 1.39 (Destatis 2012b). While Adenauer did not consider this a problem, demography has proven him wrong. This is why a proper understanding of population economics is so important.
Source: Celebrating 150 Years of Analyzing Fertility Trends
in Germany, by Michael J. Kendzia and Klaus F. Zimmermann
Institute for the Study of Labor GmbH (IZA), Bonn

That direction of government-promoted and -imposed fiscal irresponsibility became wide-spread and eventually adopted as a universal fiscal strategy adopted by the soon-to-emerge member-nations of the OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development).  Today, in 2017, All OECD nations managed to rack-up incredibly large mountains of debt, comprised mostly of unfunded liabilities, the paying of which, by a steadily shrinking, young and productive population sector, for a steadily growing elderly, unproductive population sector is an increasingly larger impossibility and a challenge that defies the imagination of the best economists.

But the article does address a large variety of other issues that will become just as important as time goes by.

Washington Post

The World Won’t Be Aging Gracefully. Just the Opposite.

Sunday, January 4, 2009; Page B01

» Links to this article

By Neil Howe and Richard Jackson

The world is in crisis. A financial crash and a deepening recession are afflicting rich and poor countries alike. The threat of weapons of mass destruction looms ever larger. A bipartisan congressional panel announced last month that the odds of a nuclear or biological terrorist attack somewhere in the world by the year 2014 are better than 50-50. It looks as though we’ll be grappling with these economic and geopolitical challenges well into the 2010s.

But if you think that things couldn’t get any worse, wait till the 2020s. The economic and geopolitical climate could become even more threatening by then — and this time the reason will be demographics.

Yes, demographics, that relentless maker and breaker of civilizations. From the fall of the Roman and the Mayan empires to the Black Death to the colonization of the New World and the youth-driven revolutions of the 20th century, demographic trends have played a decisive role in precipitating many of the great invasions, political upheavals, migrations and environmental catastrophes of history. By the 2020s, an ominous new conjuncture of these trends will once again threaten massive disruption. We’re talking about global aging, which is likely to have a profound effect on economic growth, living standards and the shape of the world order.

For the world’s wealthy nations, the 2020s are set to be a decade of hyperaging and population decline. Many countries will experience fiscal crisis, economic stagnation and ugly political battles over entitlements and immigration. Meanwhile, poor countries will be buffeted by their own demographic storms. Some will be overwhelmed by massive age waves that they can’t afford, while others will be whipsawed by new explosions of youth whose aspirations they cannot satisfy. The risk of social and political upheaval and military aggression will grow throughout the developing world — even as the developed world’s capacity to deal with these threats weakens….(Full Story)

F4L: Still, although the article by Howe and Jackson discusses many important and worrying issues, it does not cover enough of those (e. g.: the article brings up China’s one-child policy, but the far more important influence of US National Security Study Memorandum 200 is not mentioned at all).  The most important omission in the article is that it does not mention that the calamity of the world-population reduction is not a natural and inevitable process.  It is the consequence of a very deliberate plan for systematically depopulating the world by 80 percent or more.

For more on that check:

The Demographics of Death, or, The Decline & Fall of the Human Empire

World Population Control — U.S. Strategy and UN Policy Program

An overview compiled from various sources, based on various opinions relating to the consequences of the U.S.-promoted culture of death resulting from National Security Study Memorandum 200, by Henry A. Kissinger, National Security Council, Washington, D.C. 20506, April 24, 1974.

U.N. projects a significant population shift by 2050 (2001 article)

United Nations Population Information Network (POPIN), UN Population Division, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, with support from the UN Population Fund (UNFPA)

Population Trends: Rapid Growth in Less Developed Regions (2008, UNFPA)
The preceding links are from, Patriarchy — Was there ever such a thing?

What will the golden years be like for those awaiting them?

The primary fallacies of forecasting: 1. Things will be different, 2. than you think!

There is one more issue that the article by Neil Howe and Richard Jackson does not address adequately.  Their article closes with,

All told, population trends point inexorably toward a more dominant U.S. role in a world that will need us more, not less. For the past several years, the U.N. has published a table ranking the world’s 12 most populous countries over time. In 1950, six of the top 12 were developed countries. In 2000, only three were. By 2050, only one developed country will remain — the United States, still in third place. By then, it will be the only country among the top 12 with a historical commitment to democracy, free markets and civil liberties.

Abraham Lincoln once called this country “the world’s last best hope.” Demography suggests that this will remain true for some time to come.

Yes, the region presently occupied by the USA experiences population increases.  However, the optimism expressed over that by the authors of the article may not be justified.  The USA relies for its population growth on the fertility of its Hispanic population sector, while the Black and Caucasian population sectors are experiencing fatal and accelerating decline.  That means that at the very least the nature of the USA will by 2050 no longer resemble much of its present character, just as a predominantly Muslim Europe no longer will resemble much of anything that Europe had become accustomed to by the 1950s.

There is another consideration that is even more important when contemplating the future of the USA in 2050.  If the USA will still exist then, it will quite likely be that its name will stand for something like the United Socialist Aggregation.  That is of course a little awkward and it will more likely be called something like USSA, for United Socialist States of America.

Moreover, the USA is an empire, very much split along the lines of ethnic aspirations.  Given the rapid growth of the population of Hispanic origin and background (much along the lines of the former Spanish colonies that existed not all that long ago (the southern and western states that were usurped from Mexico), the chances that the empire of the USA will still be in existence by 2050 are little better now than those of the former USSR were in the 1950s that it would still be whole by 1990.

No, it is a distinct possibility that by 2050 the name of the most populous developed nation on Earth will be that of the empire of the predominantly Islamic European Union, with the much expanded empire of the predominantly Catholic EUN (Estados Unidos Norteamérica) being a close second and the shrunken and still shrinking empire of the predominantly Atheist USSA (United Socialist States of America) being third.

A related article looks at some of those issues within the context of the deaths and the dying of rural communities in Canada.

Eight years later — How did things pan out, so far?

It seems that my 2009 predictions, as to where those looking forward to their golden years are headed, are still on track. One thing I did not stress (because I had no idea that it would become as bad as it has become by now) is to what extent the developed nations are now in hock.  To whom we owe the horrendous mountain of debt is not as important as is the fact that about four-fifth of it does not even comprise money we pay back right now but money that will nevertheless come due when it needs to be paid: unfunded liabilities comprised by all sort of government-funded safety nets that must pay out when payment is required, or people will die.

Who will be making those payments? The younger, productive and steadily shrinking population sector that will still be working, although there will not be enough and ever fewer of them — while more and more people, mostly elderly who no longer can or will not be working for whatever reason, for whom the governments have no money, but who nevertheless expect that the government will somehow be able to help them out.

If you have trouble with the meaning of the term “unfunded liabilities,” when your roof is starting to leak when it rains, and when your car needs a tow about once a week because it is too dilapidated, the cost of the repairs for that, for which you have absolutely no money, even though you knew you were headed for those major repairs and many more like them, because you never saved any money to be able to make those payments, and you have no assets and no job to be able to borrow anything to tie you over, those are unfunded liabilities! There is a lot of payments that will come due, right now, alone in the U.S. of A. close to $150 trillion.

Okay, that’ll be one humongous problem, and no one has any idea what will happen or what will have to be done about it. Journalists in the mainstream dailies hardly ever write about that problem.  I guess, when we turn our heads, or watch a ballgame, the problem will have miraculously disappeared.  We’ve got the here and now to worry about, right?

All developed nations are in the same boat on that. Ask yourself whether, when payday comes around and you need money to cover the necessities of life, but you got your pink slip a couple of weeks earlier, and so did your best buddies, will you be able to borrow from them if they are on the way over to see you whether you can help them financially?

Your neighbours have the same problem, all the people down the street are equally broke, as are the people in the next county and in the next country and the ones on the other side of the world.  Will you be able to borrow any money from anyone? They all are broke, and they all have an equal share of the debt that is weighing you down.  Besides, even if they would be able to lend you a couple of Cs, how would you pay them back, with peanuts? Have you even got any of those left anywhere?  How will you be able to enjoy your golden years? What will you be using to enjoy them with?

Alright, that is what the appended article and my comments that I made then just barely but insufficiently touched on.

The governments are out of money. The bottom of the barrel they were scraping a bit out of is just a big hole now. They need money they don’t have, and now they are beginning to tax the life-blood of economies everywhere, energy: carbon taxes, sales taxes, green taxes, who knows what kind of taxes? They constantly come up with new ones and new names for them, because the life-blood of economies, the one thing that makes everything run, that has not yet been taxed very much, but they make you feel good about that, because, they say, it will save the planet when you shell out!

Never mind the groceries you need. You’ve got a job to do. Pay your energy taxes, so the planet can be saved! /sarc — Yes, I am being sarcastic about it, but then I have starved.  I know what it is like.  I don’t want to go into the details of how bad that was, but when you get only three slices of bread to eat a day, saving the planet is the last thing on your mind, and you sure as heck don’t want to be forced into doing it, seeing that is not what you’ll be paying for anyway…..

If you think that I am blowing smoke, contemplate this:

Debt-financing seriously troubles developed nations

Addiction to debt-financing put all developed nations in serious trouble, all of them, as far as I can tell, at least the OECD nations, countries that are members of the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development.  Here are two examples: … Continue reading 

Until next time….

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