‘Live With Your Parents To Raise Birthrate’ Suggests Politician

Abe cabinet minister suggests three generations of family living together will raise the falling birthrate

Abe cabinet minister suggests three generations of family living together will raise the falling birthrate

One of the hot topics on Girls Channel today was the news that Ishii Keiichi, the new Minister of Land, Infrastructure and Transport had announced plans to encourage three generations of Japanese families to live under the same roof as a means of raising the birthrate.

We’re not sure how much Minister Ishii really understands about reproduction, but it’s probably safe to say that he doesn’t seem to realise that living with your parents might not be very conducive to it.

The Girls Channel girls are not massive fans of the idea either, with many pointing out that before suggesting harebrained schemes like this, the government might want to actually do something practical to help women bring up children, like, say, reasonable childcare provisions.

From Housenews.jp:

Minister of Land, Infrastructure and Transport Promotes 3 Generations Of A Family Living Together Or Near Each Other

Accompanying the inauguration of the 3rd Abe Administration on October 7, Komeito Member Ishii Keiichi began his office as the Minister of Land, Infrastructure and Transport. That evening, at a press conference held at the Ministry, Ishii told journalists: “I want to deal with things through demonstrating the practical problem-solving ability and the collective strength that the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport already has”. Ishii raised as specific themes the speed with which the Tohoku region had recovered following the Tohoku Earthquake, keeping citizens safe and reassured through policies aimed at preventing and reducing the impact of disasters, policies regarding the deterioration of infrastructure, the measured maintenance of social capital and the promotion of Japan as a tourist destination. Through these examples Ishii hinted at the realization of a rich life for Japanese citizens, and the rejuvenation of Japan’s regional areas. As his housing policy, Ishii stated his intention to grapple with the review and implementation of policies that encourage three generations of a family either living together or close to one another as a means of raising the birth rate. This was apparently on the suggestion of Prime Minister Abe Shinzo.

Comments from Girls Channel:


No way I’d live with them.




Umm, shouldn’t comprehensive childcare come first so that we can relax and be able to work??


Isn’t it better to increase the number of nurseries and creches?


Looks like the number of divorces will rise because people were living with their parents…


Hah, now even the government is suggesting we live together.


Enhance employment opportunities first!


Don’t even suggest it.


Give us the money to renovate our houses then.


Umm, isn’t this nursing the elderly rather than childcare?


Does he seriously think this is going raise the birthrate?


Thing is, we’ll end up nursing our elderly relatives rather than getting help bringing up our children.


Doesn’t Abe realize that the youngest of the three generations of women will be completely stressed?


What an absolutely idiotic idea, that the birthrate will go up if we live with the rest of our family. It’s not particularly easy to live with people, and there’s loads of stuff to fight over when you live together, too!


So ultimately, you’re gonna leave it to the people to do something about it.


So you’re saying that if a woman is old then you can just dump your kids on her?
There are plenty of older women who still work.
Instead, why don’t you raise the salaries of the teachers who work in nurseries and kindergartens, and make a lot more of them?


And where’s all this proof that if three generations live under the same roof the birth rate miraculously goes up?


The number of people getting married is falling all the time.
The point is that on top of nursing elderly relatives and raising children ourselves, they want to get us women out to work as well.

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  • Claude

    Ishii Keiichi is another Todai graduate showing Japan how outstanding the minds of the graduates of this world class university can be. With groundbreaking economic reform like this I can’t imagine why Japan has been in a twenty year mire.

    • Ioannis Polemarkhos

      That’s because they haven’t accepted Jesus Christ as their personal savior.

  • Disqus

    Think and act like Islander.

  • A Gawd Dang Mongolian

    Because nothing stimulates couples to do the nasty like the looming threat that your parents might walk in by accident.

    • risotto

      Are you kidding? Nothing gets me going than when my husband and I stay at our in-laws and we can hear my FIL snoring in the other room! /s

  • bigmamat

    Rather than do something about the state of the stagnant economy which is driving the low birthrate some old dude comes up with an old dude answer. Move back home with mommy and daddy so everyone can live together happily ever after. Plus remain under the thumb of your parents until they kick the bucket. Wonder how many will rush back home after such a suggestion.

    • guest

      But is it really completely the economy that is driving the low birthrate, or vice-versa? The low birthrate of Japan is a pretty complex situation, driven by economic and societal factors, and for sure, a sluggish economy plays a part. But it’s also without a doubt true that it is very difficult to have a growing economy, to increase birthrate as you say, with a shrinking, aging population.

      On the other hand, if you have children being born, expenditure, and thus growth, is unavoidable. Babies need diapers, they need food, clothes, etc,. So while trying to fix structural issues that are holding the economy back, such as the long extra hours that many people work with low productivity, or more child-care opportunities, are a more long-term, permanent solution, it’s pretty easy to see why he would try to encourage couples to have more children by moving in with their parents, which theoretically should let them take care of the kids while both parents work, as an easier fix that ought to have more immediate results.

      Japan in reality needs to encourage it’s population to have more kids now, though perhaps schemes like this, more tax breaks, etc., and needs to work on making it’s economy more efficient for the future, so that there can be a higher birth rate, better work-life balance, give people opportunities to meet, get married, and have kids, etc. It needs to have a comprehensive, all of the above plan. And though a lot of pundits think they need more immigrants to save their country, I don’t think that’s necessary at all. No need to flood the place with people who wont assimilate, they just need to encourage the indigenous populace to have more kids.

      • bigmamat

        I don’t know enough about Japan’s economy to know why it’s remained so sluggish. I’d surmise just from the state of the rest of the world that Japan has been effected by the same thing that ails us all, too much money in too few hands. Problem is this time around you can’t get your ignorant unwashed masses to do exactly what you want them to do because a lot of them aren’t ignorant anymore. They won’t breed indiscriminately because they know the consequences. They won’t shoulder the entire burden for their parents because they’re the SOBs that helped blow it all up anyway. So what’s an old guy to do but come up with inane solutions like move back in with mom and dad. Yeah, OK grandpa I’ll think about it. If this part time job doesn’t work out I might have too. Sorry about the kids though.

        • guest

          I won’t pretend to be an expert on Japan, but their situation is pretty unique in the world. When their bubbles collectively burst in the late 80’s/early 90’s, they became the first advanced nation since the 30’s to experience deflation. If the government acted decisively then to fix the issue, as hard as it would have been, they would have been fine, but they half-hearted it till it’s in the shape it is now, which is monumentally harder to repair.

          For the last 2 and a half decades, prices have been either falling or holding steady, and so have wages. A lot of Japanese actually make the same or less than they did years ago. This means that nobody wants to spend, and companies don’t want to hire or raise wages, due to lack of demand. Couple this with societal issues like long hours due to pressure to give your all for the company, but some of the lowest rates of work efficiency in the G7, among other structural barriers, who has time to meet people, have a relationship, have and raise kids?

          They need something to kick start the economy, whether that means making their workforce and economy more efficient, or by having more demand do a growing population. But reforms are hard and slow to enact, and vested interests oppose them, and people don’t want to have kids, or can’t, in order to grow the population, unless they feel the future is looking up. It’s psychological for a large part, but it’s a vicious cycle.

          That’s why I do hope what the current administration is trying works out. They have managed to devaluate their currency to spur exports, which have made their export-oriented companies gain record profits. But even here deflation strikes. They wont raise wages as was hoped, because they don’t see a corresponding rise in demand at home. It’s a very tough problem to solve, but I hope they manage to figure it out.

          • Nigel Boy

            Their economy is in the state they are because Japanese admitting there are problems with their society is like extracting gold from their teeth. They would rather sweep all problems under the rug and pretend there’s nothing wrong. They live in a fantasy world basically.

          • Claude

            I used to call Japan Fantasy Island. No one one does denial like the general population. I first went to Japan in 1998 and their was discussion then that the only way to cure the shrinking population/ labor issues/pension crises is to encourage immigration. Nothing has changed. It’s discussed and then immediately forgotten. You/they can’t fix something that doesn’t really want to be fixed. Japan chooses to rot.

            I Decided it’s not my problem until the less intelligent and poorly educated lash out at the foreign community. The scapegoating is a direct part of Japan’s denial. I look a dumb Japanese in the eyes and say that. “Gaijin are the least of Japan’s problems. Japan’s a mess because you got the politicians you deserve, Etc etc” Never to wordy because I feel like I’m wasting my time.

            Anyways, there are Japanese people who know better but are so worn out by the process they’ve pretty much given up, also. Sad, complacency and denial have won.

    • wtfJapan?

      Mass slavery of foreigners are state sanctioned and controlled by Japanese government, so this type of comment is not a surprise.


      Japan sanctioning mass ‘slave labor’ by duping foreign trainees, observers say



      The first word En learned when he began working at a construction site in Japan after moving from China was “baka,” Japanese for “idiot.”

      The 31-year-old farmer is one of 50,000 Chinese who signed up for a government-run program that promises foreigners the chance to earn money while acquiring valuable on-the-job training. Like many of his compatriots, he hoped to leave Japan with cash in his pocket and a new set of skills that would give him a better shot at work at home.

      “My Japanese colleagues would always say baka to me,” said En, who spoke only on condition that his full name not be revealed. “I am exhausted physically and mentally.”

      His problem is not the bullying by Japanese colleagues, nor the two-hour commute each-way or the mind-numbing work that largely consists of breaking apart old buildings. It is the ¥1 million he borrowed to take part in the Industrial Trainee and Technical Internship Program, ostensibly to cover traveling expenses and other “fees” charged by middlemen.

      The loan has left him a virtual slave to Japan’s labor-hungry construction industry. “I cannot go back before I make enough money to repay the debt,” he said.

      Japan is desperately short of workers to pay taxes to fund pensions and health care for its rapidly graying population, but it is almost constitutionally allergic to immigration. Less than 2 percent of the populace is classified as “non-Japanese” by the government; by comparison, around 13 percent of British residents are foreign-born.

      This results, critics say, in ranks of poorly protected employees brought in through a government-sanctioned back door that is ripe for abuse and exploitation.

      “This trainee program is a system of slave labor. You cannot just quit and leave. It’s a system of human trafficking, forced labor,” said Ippei Torii, director of Solidarity Network With Migrants Japan, a nongovernmental group that supports foreign workers.

      Around a quarter of Japan’s population of 127 million is 65 or older, and this proportion is expected to jump to 40 percent in the coming decades. The heavily indebted government, which owes creditors more than twice what the economy generates annually, is scrambling to find the money to cover the welfare and health costs associated with the burgeoning ranks of the elderly even as the taxpayer base shrinks.

      Japan’s average birthrate of around 1.4 children per woman, far below the level necessary to replenish the national workforce, is ratcheting up the pressure.

      In most developed nations, this kind of shortfall is plugged by immigration, but Japan allows no unskilled workers into the country amid fears by some they would threaten the nation’s culture of consensus, an argument others view as mere cover for xenophobia.

      But in 1993, as the economy was on the way down from its bubbly 1980s zenith, the government began the foreign trainee program, which allows tens of thousands of workers, mostly from China, Vietnam and Indonesia, to come to Japan and supply labor for industries including textiles, construction, farming and manufacturing.

      The program, however, has not been without its critics. Japan’s top ally, the U.S., has even singled it out, with the State Department’s annual Trafficking in Persons Report for years slamming the program’s “deceptive recruitment practices.”

      “The (Japanese) government did not prosecute or convict forced labor perpetrators despite allegations of labor trafficking in the TTIP,” it said this year, using the program’s acronym.

      Past allegations include unpaid overtime work, karoshi (death from overwork), and all kinds of harassment, including company managers restricting the use of toilets or demanding sexual services.

      The government rejects claims the program is abusive, yet acknowledges there have been some upstream problems. “It is true that some involved in the system have exploited it, but the government has acted against that,” an immigration official said. “It is not a system of slave labor.”

      The official insisted it was not in authorities’ power to control the behavior of middlemen but insisted they were not allowed to charge deposit fees. “It is also banned for employers to take away trainees’ passports,” he added.

      Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has unveiled a plan to expand the program that would allow foreign trainees to stay in Japan for five years instead of three, and says such labor will increasingly be needed, particularly in the construction boom ahead of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Abe is also aware that the nation’s health care sector must increasingly look abroad to fill the shortage of workers.

      “It has been said that we will need 1 million caregivers for the elderly by 2025, which would be impossible to handle only with the Japanese population,” said Tatsumi Kenmochi, a manager at a care home near Tokyo that employs Indonesian nurses.

      For Kenmochi, foreign staff are a precious commodity and the sector must do as much as it can to make them feel welcome. “It must be hard to leave home and work overseas,” he said. “We make sure that they don’t get homesick, listening to them and sometimes going out to have a warm bowl of noodles with them.”

      Torii of Solidarity Network With Migrants Japan said this is just the kind of attitude Japan needs to learn: “The issue is not whether we accept immigrants or not. They are already here, playing a vital role in our society.”

      • bigmamat

        Look every country that relies on unskilled immigrant labor has these kind of problems. Here in the U.S., this bastion of freedom and liberty, things like this still go on. Certainly we know what it’s like to rely on unskilled immigrant labor to do the things Americans won’t do because the conditions are too bad and the pay is shitty. Yet we round up the laborers like criminals and rarely is anything done to the people who employ them. The Japanese government is full of old farts just like my government is being held hostage by a bunch of lying old ass kissers that not only don’t want to govern but don’t seem to give a shit if it all falls apart. They can just move to whatever island they’re hiding their money in when the rest of us finally come for their heads.

    • Ioannis Polemarkhos

      When you put economics first, then you’re building a house with the roof first. All economies are the result of the human situation, which includes the birth and death rates. If you think some magic hand waving and smart-sounding buzzwords from an economist will solve Japan’s problems, get yourself checked- it’s the same sort of hedonistic mouse utopia that makes men and women uninterested in having children- if you’re happy and everything you need is easily obtainable, why bother make any changes with your arrangement, with the inconvenience of a “family”?

      It’s some young dude with young dude answer; you only need the obligatory “lol, weed, dude!” and you’re complete. You fucking degenerates.

  • vonskippy

    Japan – this is what happens when you blur out what really happens in a porno movie – your citizens are confused on what actually is required to procreate.

  • Email

    Korea and Japan living with family. All understandable.

  • Ioannis Polemarkhos

    Japan’s gonna be a gonner; they’re going to be replaced by Filipinos, Brazilians, Nigerians, and Koreans. Shikata ga nai.

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