Tuesday, February 2, 2010

China's Cassandra Prophecy

A country without girls. (Via Joshua Snyder)

Young girls are being kidnapped within China and also from neighboring countries (Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, Myanmar, Thailand) by organized gangs who sell them to families with boys of a similar age. The girls will be raised by the families and given as brides to their sons as soon as they reach marriageable age. Others are shipped to brothels within China for a life as sex slaves.

Needless to say China’s neighbours are not enamored of the growing practice. Diplomatic tensions have risen over the issue and China has had to establish a special police unit to help its neighbours combat the very crime its policy has created.

Even more bizarre crimes have been reported in this patriarchal society where it is believed that a wife is necessary to tend to her husband even after death. A rising practice in some remote areas of China is to dig up the corpses of single women to sell to families whose sons may have recently perished. Posthumous wedding ceremonies are held to ensure the deceased son does not have to endure the next life alone. With higher prices commanded by fresh corpses of young women the practice has led to murders of young girls by some crime gangs looking to capitalize on distraught parents enduring the loss of a young son.

It appears the CASS report has merely touched the tip of the iceberg. But it is interesting that the nation’s top Government think-tank is publicly discussing the matter. Could the public airing of the coming social problems caused by the one-child family policy mean that the Government is ready to repeal the policy? Or has CASS just made a Cassandra prophecy?


xavier said...

Maria Elena:
No because it'll be 'unfair' to the cities like Shanghai and Beijing while benefiting the rural areas. The rural/urban divide is a very serious one because there's a lot of resentment in the rural areas that the cities- especially on the coast have immensely benefited from embrace of the open economy while the peasants have been left behind
Second, repealing the 1 child policy won't change the underlying bias towards girls. They'll still be regarded as inferiors. Further,
The Chinese are neither culturally, morally and psychologically prepared to accept métis children

Third, the regime is fearful that the 2,5 trillion dollars in surplus will be 'frittered' away on having to increase social spending (education, healthcare, hospitals, daycare centres, etc) rather than as a war chest to buy influence and prestige

Fourth, even if the 1 child policy were repealed, there's no way that the male/female imbalance can be corrected if ever. I honestly thought that reunification with Taiwan was a subtle way of of increasing the female ratio but that country now has the lowest birthrate in the world. The population will contract a decade earlier than expected.

In conclusion, I'm skeptical of the China century; I don't think it happen as many commentators assume due to the fact that they're ignoring demographics


Julygirl said...

Desperate times call for desperate measures. We have our own population problems among the western nations......our grandchildren and great grand children will be saying "Praise Allah".

xavier said...


Doubtful. Contrary to conventional wisdom, many Moslem countries like Tunisia have a birthrate is similar to Western Europe; even Iran's birthrate has plummeted from 7 kids in the 70s to 1,5 or so last decade.

Yes in the short term, the Moslems will wreck a lot of havoc but time is against them. The Moslems in the Mideast have a GDP less than Finland; but worse of all, the women are being systematically driven from public life and face so many social and cultural disqualifications.

The Christian and non-Moslem minorities are either terrorized or forced into exile and when these minorities leave, the Moslem countries will stagnate and are only kept solvent by the West's money. That'll soon come to an end as we need that money for ourselves. The Chinese are totally disinterested in the Mideast and will only play a spoiler role.

In sum, the Moslem countries are far worse off than China.


Venus on the half shell said...

I think Julygirl meant that more and more Americans are being converted.

Anonymous said...

What's interesting about China's "one-child" policy and the preference for boys, is that, um, who couldn't see the net result of *that*? Social engineering policies are always destructive. What's fascinating is that the Chinese have to resort to the same techniques as polygamist societies do -- kidnap women, and reach further down in age, marrying young girls to men.

xavier - your comment about the birth rate in moslem countries declining was interesting. Like others, I had always assumed it was mushrooming.