Sunday, January 24, 2010

South Korea Turns Off the Lights

One Wednesday a Month, offices in South Korea will shut off their lights early in the evening. No, they're not trying to look like North Korea when viewed from space. Instead, they want all their office workers to go home.

Why? Well, I've written how some countries have high birth rates that lead to food and resource shortages. South Korea has the opposite problem, with the world's lowest birth rate. At only 1.2 kids per couple, their population is actually in decline. This means that a comparatively large portion of the population are elderly, and there will be greater pressure on people of working age. And of course with less workers, the country has less manufacturing capacity. Therefore, the Ministry of Health hopes that by getting people out of the office, they might go into the home and make babies.

In order to make this truly successful, I think that the government also needs to shut down all TV broadcasts on those same evenings, at least based on the Indian government's assumption that getting people to watch television at night will stop them from making babies.

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