Tuesday, 24 February 2009




(3) “Underpopulation” - caused by Feminism?

From: Bill Date: 16.07.2008 02:32 PM

Just 500 Japanese. An empty Europe. The world dying out..

As fertility rates fall a 'birth dearth' is spreading, write Anthony
Browne and Richard Reeves

The Observer, Sunday August 8, 1999


Even as the six billionth human is born, it's time to forget fears about
the world being overpopulated. By the end of the next millennium, Tokyo
will be a ghost town, and Japan will be empty. The country's population
will be just 500 by the year 3000, and just one by 3500. When that
person dies, the Japanese nation will be no more.

These apocalyptic predictions aren't the rantings of a doomsday cult, or
of a maverick academic out to gain some publicity, but of the Japanese
government itself. Its Ministry of Health and Welfare reports: 'If we
dare make the calculation, Japan's population will be? about 500 people
by the year 3000.'

Of course, a lot of things can change in 1,000 years. But what is
frightening about the forecast is that it's a mathematical certainty if
Japanese women carry on having just 1.4 children each on average - and
if Japan doesn't change its immigration policy. If things continue as
they are, the Japanese will die out. It's just a question of when.

And so will we.

Britain is one of 61 countries that are not having enough babies to
replace their populations, according to the United Nations. For a
population to remain stable, women need to have 2.1 babies each on
average. In the UK, women are now having just 1.7 babies. One in four
women are now opting to have none at all.

In all the countries of the European Union, fertility is now so low that
populations are set to decline - if they haven't already. Spanish women
- having just 1.15 babies each - have the lowest fertility in the world.
In some parts of Spain the average rate has dropped below one.

The European Commission says fewer babies were born last year in the EU
than in any year since the Second World War.

'Obviously, the social structure is going to change dramatically in the
next century,' says John Clarke, professor of geography at the
University of Durham.

'We are going to become used to a world with no-child and one-child
families, and with a growing proportion of older people. Siblings will
become rarer and rarer.'

Clarke points out that the unprecedented 'birth dearth' is even
spreading to some developing countries. Women in India now have fewer
babies than American women did in the 1950s, while in China, Cuba and
Thailand women are already having too few babies to replace themselves.

After centuries of population growth, and decades of apocalyptic
warnings about the population bomb, most of the developed world is now
facing a 'population bust'. In his landmark 1968 book, Population Bomb,
Professor Paul Ehrlich warned that 'we will breed ourselves into
oblivion'. Thirty years later, demographers say he is right - but not in
the way he expected.

Even a few years ago predictions abounded that the exponential growth in
the world's population would mean that by around 3000 there would be
standing room only on the planet. One demographer predicted the
impossible, claiming that in the fifth millennium humanity would
outweigh the planet itself.

But the unexpectedly sharp decline in fertility around the world has
forced all forecasters - including the UN - to downgrade their
predictions. There are now 6 billion people in the world, and while the
UN's best guess is that the global population will reach 9bn by 2050, it
admits the total could peak as low as 7.5bn by 2040 before falling back.

Almost all that growth will be in Africa and Asia, outweighing sharp
falls in much of the developed world. The UN predicts that by 2050,
Russia's population will have declined by 25 million people, Japan's by
21m, Italy's by 16m, and Germany's and Spain's by 9m each. Britain, with
a younger population and more babies, is less affected - at least
initially. The UN forecasts the British population will drop by 2m by
2050 before the decline accelerates.

The most catastrophic fall will be in Estonia, which is set to lose more
than a third of its population in the next 50 years.

Samuel Preston of the University of Pennsylvania reckons Europe will
lose 24 per cent of its population by 2060. The UN forecasts that Europe
and Japan will lose half their population by 2100.

All this is not just crystal ball gazing. The European Commission says
the 'natural' populations of Germany, Greece, Italy and Sweden fell last
year - with only immigration ensuring that the overall populations
remained steady. The populations of all but two of the countries in
central and Eastern Europe fell in 1997, with Latvia's dropping by
almost 1 per cent.

Of course, longer-term projections are shaky. 'We really do have to
differentiate between shorter-term projections, say up to 30 years, and
the longer-term ones which by definition are highly speculative,' Clarke

Nonetheless, he says, there is little prospect of a dramatic change in
the fertility figures. 'The main factors driving the change are changes
in social attitudes towards smaller families and the decline of the
extended family, and even more important, the huge change in the status
of women as they enter the labour market in greater numbers. I don't
see, for the foreseeable future, much chance of an increase in family

The implications of the birth dearth are potentially as far-reaching as
those of the population bomb. Most debate has focused on the related
issue of an ageing population, and the crippling cost of providing
pensions, but a falling population presents problems of its own.

Housebuilders will become as outdated as cartwrights; property prices
will fall as ghost towns proliferate. Traffic jams and overflowing
trains will be things of the past. The environment - or what is left of
it - will benefit as fewer people pollute less. The military may have to
raise maximum ages to fill the ranks; schools will need to be remodelled
as lifelong learning centres or knocked down.

Businesses brought up on expanding markets will have to get used to a
shrinking customer base. Workforces will shrink, eradicating
unemployment and creating labour shortages. In just 10 years, the
population of working age will be contracting by 1 per cent a year in
Italy, Germany and Japan.

Countries hooked on permanent economic growth will have to adapt to
permanent recession, as their populations - and economic outputs - dwindle.

People are likely to be lonelier, with extended families - or even
families - becoming a thing of the past. Demographer Nicholas Eberstadt,
of the American Enterprise Institute, says: 'For many people "family"
would be understood as a unit that does not include any biological

He adds: 'Most of the biological relatives for many people - perhaps
most people - will be their ancestors'.

Peter G. Peterson writes in his book Gray Dawn: 'Throughout history,
most people who reached old age came to know personally far more of
their descendants than their ancestors. In the near future, this will be

'It is likely you will never get to know as many of your children (and
their children) as of your parents, your parents' parents and so on.'

The decline of rich nations is also likely to change the balance of
global political power. In 1950, 32 per cent of the world's population
lived in developed countries. By 2050, it will be just 12 per cent.
Europe - which had a quarter of the world's population in 1900, but will
have just 7 per cent by 2050 according to UN projections - will become a
marginal force. It will be overtaken by Latin America, whose share of
the world's population will double to 9 per cent; and dwarfed by Africa.

In 1900, Europe had three times the population of Africa; by 2050,
Africa will have three times the population of Europe. In 1950, six of
the 12 most populous countries were in the developed world; by 2050, the
US will be the only developed country in the top 12.

But nature - and humanity - abhors a vacuum. Peterson writes: 'Perhaps
the most predictable consequence will be massive immigration pressure on
older and wealthier societies facing labour shortages.'

Sweden has managed to arrest the decline in its birth rate in part
through the introduction of more favourable tax status for parents.

Stephen Radley, chief economist at the Henley Centre, the forecasting
think-tank, says fiscal fertility schemes are unlikely to have much
impact. 'I think that governments will be forced to relax their stance
on immigration,' he says. 'And I think the UK is even more likely to do
this than other European countries, given our history on immigration. We
have, uniquely in Europe, absorbed Eastern and Asian culture in a big way.'

If we are short of people, it seems certain that - as in the past - we
will simply throw open our national borders until the balance has been

Radley says the only other policy change that could help to reverse the
decline is a rebalancing of work and family life.

'If parents are able to continue in their careers more easily, if the
workplace culture changes, then that could impact on decision-making on
children,' he says.

Parental leave, albeit for 13 weeks and unpaid, is a step in the right
direction, he says - although the fact that the Daily Mail, the 'paper
of the family', described even this modest measure as a 'another blow
for business' shows just how far attitudes towards supporting parents in
the workplace need to change.

Comment - BH: Hire men only, put women back in kitchen and bedroom, ban
abortion and reinstitute "family wage". Woman reproduces, man earns
bread. "Back to basics".

Reply (Peter M.): There’s no need to go from one extreme to the other.
Full-time mothering is best for children up to the age of 3. At that
point, the child should attend pre-school for half a day each day
(Montessori-type preschools, which develop the intellect - children at
that age are naturally curious, and learn easily without inducements or
force). The mothers can do part-time jobs at the same time.

(4) The Nurturing Mother

by James Kimmel, Ph.D.


Because young animals depend on their mothers during a substantial part
of their early development the mother-offspring group is the universal
nuclear unit of mammalian societies. Edward Wilson, Sociobiology

The nurturing mother is not a myth or a fantasy. She was, for hundreds
of thousands of years if not longer, the mother of all humans and the
foundation on which our success as a species rested. This does not mean
that she was worshipped as a Goddess, nor that she was part of a race of
Amazons who dominated men. Neither did she, as an individual, correspond
to the romantic images portrayed in civilization by Madonna-like
paintings and sculptures. She simply cared for her offspring as any
mammal does. Both those who glorify her and those who do not recognize
her importance in human evolution and individual development are unable
to grasp what we have lost and what we lose every day in our society by
her absence.

Throughout the bulk of time that we have existed as a species, all
infants who lived had a nurturing mother (or her equivalent).
Breastfeeding was a successful adaptive mechanism not only because it
provided the newborn with sustenance, but because it continued the
attachment of mother and infant after birth. The prolonged mother-child
bond was the root of human sociability, and the nurturing response of
the mother to her child became a model for human interaction. It
prepared both female and male children to live in a world where
attachment to, caring about, and collaborating with other humans was
natural to life. Our prehistoric ancestors were born into and lived as
part of a protective and caring group, unified around the recognition
and support of their connection to, and dependence on, each other. We
could not have survived as the species we are without attachment to each
other. Our adaptive strength has always been in our ability for combined
and unified functioning, not in our separate and individual powers. Our
brain, with its capacity for language, empathy, and imagination evolved
as it did to increase our ability to function together. Mothering was
the foundation - the bricks of human solidarity; the human mind provided
the cement.

The history of child care in Western civilization has been characterized
by a pervasive assault on natural mothering and the mother's nurturing
role. Breastfeeding is the only human biological function that we have
attempted to replace and eliminate. But it is not breastfeeding in
itself that has been disturbing in civilization. It depends on who is
doing the breastfeeding.

Wet nursing, as a replacement for nursing by the natural mother, was a
popular and conventional practice for thousands of years. It was not a
practice that was developed to improve on nature's way of providing the
newborn with sustenance, but a way of eliminating the necessity for
mothers to care for their babies. It was, in many parts of the world, a
major way that infants were fed from ancient times through the beginning
of the twentieth century.

The substitution of a wet-nurse for the natural mother has been
explained as an expression of class distinction. Breastfeeding was
perceived as unseemly, animal-like, and beneath women of the upper
classes. But the practice of using a wet-nurse also spread to the poorer
classes. Many wet-nurses earned a good enough living to be able to hire
a less expensive wet-nurse to breastfeed their own babies.

The negative perception of breastfeeding reveals, of course, the strong
negative feelings toward natural mothering in civilized societies. But
if we look below the surface, more was at stake than the social status
of an individual female. What was really troublesome was the fact that
breastfeeding fostered the physical and emotional attachment of infant
and mother. Civilization was built on stratification of the group, on
inequality between individuals, on the greater importance and value of
specific individuals, and on the belief that women are inferior to men.
This position is tenable and can only be perpetuated if the influence of
mothers on their children is negated. Biological mothering establishes
that every individual is important, precious, and special. We become
equal in each other's eyes from being nurtured in the human way.

The need to eliminate mother-infant attachment and mother influence is
clearly revealed in Plato's ideal society which he describes in "The
Republic." He states, in discussing his conception of ideal infant care:

The proper officers will take the offspring of the good parents to
the pen or fold, and they will deposit them with certain nurses who
dwell in a separate quarter; but the offspring of the inferior, or of
the better when they chance to be deformed, will be put away in some
mysterious, unknown place, as they should be… that must be done if the
breed of the guardians is to be kept pure.

They will provide for their nurture, and will bring the mothers to
the fold when they are full of milk, taking the greatest possible care
that no mother recognize her own child; and other wet-nurses may be
engaged if more are required. Care will also be taken that the process
of sucking shall not be protracted too long; and the mothers will have
no getting up at night or other trouble, but will hand over all this
sort of thing to the nurses and attendants. ...

Human inventiveness has made it possible for the newborn to survive
without a nurturing mother. In an age where anyone can feed a baby with
formula in a bottle, the natural mother is no longer necessary. In fact,
our values and priorities are directed toward eliminating or minimizing
the child's need for a nurturing mother and the mother's need to be one.
This is not, as I have indicated, a recent innovation. What needs to be
stressed is that our intervention in natural mothering was not designed
to improve the life of infants, but rather to eliminate, shorten, and
alter the infant-mother bond. Wet-nurses, bottle feeding, nannies, and
day-care centers came into being so that the biological mother would not
have to take care of her child. Forced weaning, early toilet training,
and the imposition at a young age of self-care in dressing, feeding,
washing, etc. are all representative of efforts to shorten the time that
children are dependent on their mothers. The discouragement of carrying
infants, sleeping with them, and immediately responding to their crying
have changed the mother's protective and nurturing role into one where
she conditions her infant to accept life in aloneness. The conversion of
the nurturing mother into a conditioner of behavior has altered her role
in child development. For thousands of years it has not only been
fathers, but mothers also, who have been ignoring babies' crying and
imposing harsh and cruel discipline and punishment on them.

Most of us no longer know about the nurturing mother. Few of us had one,
and rarely do we meet anyone who is one. Her role in human history does
not appear in the history books we read in school. Yet, we evolved to
develop in relation to a nurturing mother, and every baby biologically
"expects" to have one. Our need for her, if unmet, does not go away as
we mature. She remains as a "longing" which we can no longer identify,
because we have repressed our need for nurturing.

We may try, as many do today, to satisfy the emptiness inside us by
attaching to possessions and wealth and by compulsive, self-relating
addictions to food, alcohol, drugs, our bodies, unloving sex, and our
separate egos. But these dependencies always fail because they reinforce
our feeling of separateness in the world. Our longing and our emptiness
can only be satisfied in loving human attachment, which is what we lost
when the nurturing mother ceased to fit the world we made.

(5) Make mothers matter

Peter S. Cook


October 2002 Newsletter

also at www.family.org.au/con_docs/mothers.doc

We pay almost anyone to look after infants except their mothers.
Evidence that good mothering matters, both for the individual and for
society, is steadily growing.

New reports from the Early Child Care Network of the US National
Institute for Child Health and Development increase concerns about early
childcare and its effects on young people. Some 25 top US scholars
co-ordinate this multi-million dollar study, following more than 1000
babies from birth, to compare the effects of maternal care with various
alternatives. Fathering is important, but this article is about mothering.

In Australia we fund the Institute of Family Studies for expertise in
family matters. In 1994 it published Effects of Child Care on Young
Children: Forty Years of Research by Gay Ochiltree. She dismissed
research suggesting risks in early childcare, especially US studies,
arguing that Australian childcare is so good that American findings of
adverse outcomes don't apply. She claimed: "No evidence has been found
that good quality childcare harms children."

The NICHD Network reported in American Educational Research Journal
that, although higher quality childcare was associated with better
cognitive performance at 4, the more time during these four years that
these children had spent in any type of non-maternal childcare,
regardless of its quality, the more assertiveness, disobedience and
aggression they showed with adults, both in kindergarten and at home.

At school one year later, they continued to be more aggressive and
disobedient, not just assertive or independent. So non-maternal
childcare, whatever its quality, is associated with important risks.
NICHD warns that even modest adverse effects on behaviour can have
serious social consequences when large numbers of children are affected.

NICHD studies also found that when children spent more time in
childcare, their mothers displayed less sensitivity when interacting
with them at six, 15, 24, and 36 months of age. Sensitive, responsive
mothering through the early years was the best predictor of social
competence at six years, which in turn predicts schooling success.

Early childcare also precludes longer breastfeeding, which, besides
better health, is known to give significantly higher IQs in adults
(Journal of the American Medical Association, May 8).

The movement for women's "liberation", while advancing women in the
workplace, devalued and undermined their role as mothers. This denied
infants' needs for mothering, and mothers' needs to provide it.
Healthy mothering includes breastfeeding, holding, carrying, attachment
bonds, and making infants feel loved. These basic needs of infants are
hardly met in institutional childcare, especially when profits must be
maximised in private centres. Professor Jay Belsky, a distinguished
member of the NICHD Network, described a staff ratio of one carer to
five infants under two (the NSW standard) as nobody's idea of quality,
but rather a licence to neglect.

Childcare is now one of Australia's most profitable growth "industries"
(BRW Rich 200, February 2). It promotes circumstances that fuel its own
expansion, as two-income couples bid up the price of homes, and two
incomes are needed to raise a family. Mothering is out. Childcare is in.
We pay almost anyone to look after infants except their mothers.
Mothering and fathering happen after work in "quality" time.

Yet Penelope Leach's large survey found that most child development
professionals privately believe it's best for infants to be cared for
mostly by their mothers. Like the NICHD studies, they don't support the
view that parents are interchangeable, but that they complement each other.

We need to do whatever it takes to help women give their babies and
young children the lifelong benefits of high quality mothering, and stop
subsidising an ideology that promotes risky and inadequate substitutes.

Peter S. Cook is a retired consultant child psychiatrist who writes on
child and family mental health.

(6) Marriage-Lite: The Rise of Cohabitation and its Consequences

Patricia Morgan


Researcher, author and sociologist specialising in family policy,
Patricia Morgan is a patron of FTM. Her latest book, published by the
Institute for the Study of Civil Society (formerly the Health & Welfare
Unit of the IEA) examines modern cohabitation.

Far from being a mirror-image of marriage, Patricia argues that
cohabitation turns out to be something very different. Cohabiting
relationships are always more likely to fracture than marriages entered
into at the same time. It is no longer true that cohabiting couples
marry when children come along.

Cohabitations with children are in fact more likely to fragment than
childless ones. Policy-makers who like to assume that cohabitaion is
equal to marriage should think again, for the sake of the children who
are the victims of the fragmentation described.

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