It’s controversial today, or at least it ought to be, to talk about owning people. Yet, it is a relevant question: Who owns your children? A more precise question would be “who has legal rights to make decisions on the children’s behalf? There are many indications that the government see it as their right.
We have a couple of laws in Norway that are probably being violated more than any other. They deal with children and the Child Protective Services, and they state that “the biological principle” is important. That means that parents are more important and have more authority concerning their own children than the authorities. However, it’s not that simple in reality.
The Norwegian CPS is very controversial because it has a history of very aggressive actions. They frequently send the Police in unnecessary numbers to handle CPS-cases. There’s also been cases where the CPS went to court to get a child extradited from its home country, as well as a number of cases where CPS ignored orders from the court, even Supreme Court, to reunite parents and children. Actions like this has made Norwegian CPS controversial in many countries. A secondary question would be, why is this more important now than it used to be? This aggressive policy is new, so something has changed. Why do parents have less rights now? This is hard to understand, but the idea of the right to make decisions could explain some.
There is a simple mathematical problem we need to solve. In a society with a birth rate lower than 2,1 there is going to be a reduction in the population, and if it drops to 1,4 or lower, there is a risk of collapse within a couple of generations. Immigration solves that problem, but if you also don’t like immigration, you have a serious problem.
That’s the situation in countries like South-Korea and Japan, and the latter is in an especially tricky situation. They’ll probably manage as their population was high to begin with, but it’s dropping rapidly. So rapidly in fact that some conspiracy buffs with a You tube channel thought it had something to do with Fukushima. The problem is the birth rate. 1,3 million people died in Japan in 2016, and for the first time since they started this statistics in 1979, less than a million babies were born. With a high population to start with they have some time to turn this around, but now might be a good time to allow immigration.
I read an article today that makes me wonder if they understand how serious this situation is. A woman had to apologize to her employer for getting pregnant, and although her apology was accepted, the woman was later harassed. This is a part of a bigger problem in Japan. Women have to follow a pregnancy schedule, and this is just one of many forms of gender discrimination. Apart from the fact that we shouldn’t treat people like this, is this something Japan can really afford?
There may not be a conspiracy concerning the Fukushima nuclear plant, but there is still a leak, seven years after it was destroyed by an earthquake. According to an article in The Independent from February 2018 The Tokyo Electro Power Company has admitted that it could be another two years before the contamination issue is resolved. Personally I have never understood how a country that has experience from two nuclear bomb experiments can willingly take this risk.
To loan a phrase from the financial news, no one is too big to fail. That goes for countries as well. Japan is not too big to be wiped out. None of us are. That makes me sad because I have always been fascinated by Japan. I discovered anime and manga as a child, and read about buddhism and shintoism from I was about 15 years old. I had a Japanese dream when everyone else had an American dream. Unfortunately, it was an illusion. My Japan probably never existed, but I wonder if Norwegians’ illusion of America ever did too.