2019 March 3
by drdog09

There is an interesting thing about population pyramids, they do predict a framework of the future. You can tell which countries are stable and which are not. To a fashion they also portend the foreign policy of a nation. So lets look at a few.




How about some basket cases?





So what can one make of the pyramids?

Well for the US, China, France population is to remain reasonably stable. China has slight decline but it probably manageable. Its the result of their 1 Child policy which by the way they have finally modified. The biggest problem for the US is the Boomer Bubble. Specifically the pension systems. Boomers are now extracting their earnings which will result in capital tightening in the near future. Sadly the Gen X crowd is going to get hit with most of the bill in the coming years. France even with the current troubles will have a demographically stable future. Fact France with the right policies could be on ascend as Germany is on the decline.

Japan and Italy are demographically goners. Japan’s plight is part and parcel their headlong rush as a leading developer of robotics. With a declining population workforce they are forced to more and more automate as much as possible to continue their export economy. That declining population has forced Japanese companies to move capacities to countries like the US and Mexico that have a workforce. (coupled with tariff considerations…) It also means that Japan needs a defense partner (US) that they can trust. One can also understand the sensitivity the Italians have in regards to immigration. Up until recently Italy has been the LZ for all those African invaders. Fear of course they being a demographically eliminated as a culture. If you think the US has a pension problem, Italy has it in spades by the way.

Germany and Russia are of a similar fate as to Italy and Japan if only by a lesser degree. Germany has about 20 years then their economic dominance will tend to wane with a smaller population. It also indicates that Merkel’s immigration policy was a piker as the graphs are with the invaders baked in. Russia has the same problem but with a land mass 8x Germany’s. Both countries traditionally being land powers poses a military problem for each. Draft age males disappear in approximately 20 years which means their militaries will shrink no matter what they intend. Fact Syria might be the beginning of the end of Russian foreign adventures. Their futures will require a consolidation and closing of particular defensive gaps on their Western border with a much much smaller force.

The demographics of the countries that make up the EU pretty much say that they become a nothing burger on the world stage. They have way too many issues internally to be any sort of player on the world stage. Have been and will in the future on that score. One could ask a very pertinent question — Why the hell do we spend the money we do on NATO? We ought to be scaling back conventional force deployments knowing full well the Russians will no longer have the bodies to field an army even half that of the cold war period. Any long term conflict will be impossible for them and for the EU.

But why should I have all the fun with the crystal ball? Go here and you can play what-if with the data. One can infer a lot just looking at the graphs. For example, most consumer spending occurs in the 25-50 range for housing, child care, education. This age group is typically capital deficient compared to need so they fill the gap with borrowing. So if you are a banker do you look for opportunities in France or Italy?


10 Responses leave one →
  1. 2019 March 3 7:28 am
    justrand permalink

    have you read the ‘Foundation’ trilogy? (just the first three…which were excellent) These graphs and your excellent post remind me of the message of the especially the first two books

    in the first book Hari Seldon starts the “Foundation” after the ruling Elite reject his logic and Psychohistory. The reality, as Seldon tries to tell them, is that if the momentum of a trend is sufficiently large it cannot be stopped or reversed…not in the short term. Your graphs point out that fact. Those trends can only be changed over time, and Seldon sets out to do so.

    Ah…but in the second book the Mule arises, which is the one exception to Seldon’s Psychohistory. The Mule is that rare single event or person that has sufficient force to alter a trend in the short term… Trump is our “Mule”.

    vastly oversimplified depiction of the ‘Foundation’ trilogy…but I hope you get my point. 🙂

  2. 2019 March 3 8:25 am
    drdog09 permalink

    1 indeed.

    It is interesting that Trump has stumbled again successfully into the larger trends. No one is this lucky. He has someone(s) advising him that are much wiser than the public cabinet officials. So who are they??

  3. 2019 March 3 9:11 am
    justrand permalink

    drdog, I think the “someone” is Donald Trump.

    I think he is pure instinct…for better or worse.

  4. 2019 March 3 9:56 am
    justrand permalink

    The author has some misgivings about Trump’s Exec Order on Free Speech…I have none.

    I look forward to the basis for a lawsuit: “Your Honor, we don’t feel that Colleges should be bound by the Constitution!”

    Ya, that’ll work. Actually, with the Ninth Circus it probably will.

  5. 2019 March 3 10:36 am
    drdog09 permalink

  6. 2019 March 3 12:13 pm
    bc3b permalink

    Going back to the previous thread, the two hills most worth dying on are abortion and border sedurity.

  7. 2019 March 3 12:16 pm
    bc3b permalink

    I am watching a very interesting show on EWTN about the Communist penetration of the Catholic Church.

  8. 2019 March 3 1:06 pm
    JimNorCal permalink

    A great sub-plot from the Foundation books occurs when an ambassador from their equiv of the Swamp comes to visit Hari Seldon’s surviving research center. I’m making up the quotes but this is the gist:

    The researchers want assurances that they’ll be protected from the results of the breakdown of civilization that is occurring and accelerating. The ambassador’s statements reassure the team. After the diplomat leaves, one of the younger researchers says “I took the liberty of recording every word he spoke.” (Gasps, expressions of outrage). “I admit I thought the guy was an idiot. But now that I’ve run his words through analysis he clearly is shown to be a genius. After several days of consultations, I find …. that he said precisely nothing. Nothing at all. Everything he said was vague or cancelled out. An incredible achievement!”

  9. 2019 March 3 1:09 pm
    JimNorCal permalink

    6, bc3b, I’d even say that illegal migration ranks higher than abortion.
    Not at all in terms of morality, murder of new-borns wins in that category.

    But swamping the existing population with migrants will not be something we can come back from. Abortion we can dismantle state by state if need be. Anyway, that’s my take on it.

  10. 2019 March 3 1:37 pm
    justrand permalink

    Jim, your excerpt from the Foundation is one of my favorites.

    The researcher points out that he subjected the utterings and assurances of the Ambassador to “Symbolic Logic”…which he notes has been outlawed within the rest of the Empire. Sound familiar? I took Mathematical and Symbolic Logic at a VERY young age (I was part of a government “experiment” in the 5th & 6th grade). That statement from the researcher always stuck in my mind! 🙂

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