7th Nov 2011
Interesting News Report/Article
Commentary by: Roadside Observer
How To Increase A nation’s Birth Rate?
My friend from the Lion City State sent me the following news clipping. It’s about an artist (movie) expressing his feeling about the island state. He felt that this small red dot has really become a First World Nation among other advanced nations, and he could feel that the day of “doom” would still come. So, he asked, would this place reach its limits one day? (And goes down-hill).
The way i look at such thing is rather open. First and foremost, the law of physic applies – Everything and goes up will come down. And secondly, anything that’s small has to increase its size for better survival, either base on organic growth or acquisition; be it economic (GDP/productivity) or birth rate. To survive long-term and sustain the good status of well-being achieved, this small but great nation has to improve on its birth rate. Or the easier way is to continue rely on increased foreign talents, yet without the problem of polarization. Integration requires great effort but can be overcome depending on social structure and policies.
One way to help influence birth rate is to consistently work towards narrowing wealth (or real income) gap between the productive generation and the upper levels. Once these productive people have confidence to feed and provide good education for their children, they will “automatically” want to try produce more. But if people feel that living costs (inflationary outcome) and standard of living (not simply the happiness index) are becoming tougher to sustain and improve in the future, people just stop producing babies. This is the law of nature. It is learned that many people on the island are not well-catered for retirement even with their “Provident Fund” account. Younger families would see this as a tough lesson to be born in mind.
Then why does this country Philippines could continue to produce huge number of babies in an environment of 3rd (maybe 4th) World? The answers, according to my friend, could be that,
(1) The world is their people’s workplace! (On average at least 5 million or more Filipinos are working overseas). So, there isn’t the problem of lack of jobs. Even though the country’s GDP and real term economy are low on the scale.
(2) As Roman Catholics, they generally do not carry out birth control. (My friend told me that, worse still many families have no TV at home and no other entertainment, so they go to bed early.) On average poor Filipino families give birth to 7 – 8 children and those with more than 10 children are not uncommon.
Are they as “happy” as people of Kingdom of Bhutan and Tibet? Maybe. (My friend told me that Filipinos are happy lot of people…).
Food for thought.