How we can reverse our aging population

The developing world is poised to grow while the developed world ages and shrinks, but there exists a foolproof strategy to catch back up. 

Most countries around the world are aging. The oldest countries are the most developed ones, namely those in East Asia and the West. Developing countries are predicted to remain stable and, in many cases, make up for the world’s declining birth rates.

By 2050, the current ruling world powers will be very old nations and will, therefore, begin to shrink in population size. Alternatively, the developing world will be mostly working age by that time due to currently having much larger family sizes. 

National aging is caused directly by a marked decrease in average family sizes. Family growth has been discouraged societally in countries striving to seem sophisticated. Decades of vilification of the family unit by feminism have caused women to replace their prior responsibilities of raising children with joining the 9-to-5 workforce. Family growth was also discouraged by relatively stagnant wages accompanied by inflating prices, trapping two-parent households into becoming dual-income earners. 

Drastic demographic changes in working-age populations have dramatic side effects. Once the aging demographic gets too high for the working-age demographic to compensate, economic stress is placed on governments to seek more extreme or costly alternatives to assist in fields such as retirement funding, healthcare service, and military manpower. 

Meanwhile, younger age demographics indicate a later boom in the working-age class. Domestic economies then have a great opportunity to utilize their expanded population to lower the unemployment rate, create more jobs, and develop better overall infrastructure capabilities. 

Political power will eventually slip away from the aging countries that are too frail and handicapped to be able to maintain their positions on the world stage regarding economic and military status. Developing countries will be able to take advantage of their newfound surplus of success in these fields and assert dominance and influence over the rest of the world if they so choose to. 

Granted, all of these trends rely on the assumption that no dramatic world events subvert them and that all the countries involved will act in the necessary ways that address their interests and reinforce their positions in the international community. 

Leftists in the West tend to agree that mass migration is the solution. By flooding their aging countries with the plethora of working-age foreign nationals who want to leave their own underdeveloped homelands, they believe their domestic economies can be rejuvenated with an imported workforce. 

However, this proposition forgets the necessity of cultural identity. Nations that rigorously screen migrants through a legal application process filter out those who would benefit them from those who just want to take advantage of their success and hard work. Cultivating assimilation among immigrants who really want to live in another country encourages them to work harder for themselves and their new homeland, benefitting all parties. 


The most reliable solution to demographic decline is simply to have more children. Enforce policies that incentivize growing families. Take Hungary, for example. Hungarian mothers are exempted from ever paying income taxes again if they have four children or more. Within four years of enforcing this policy and others, Hungary raised its fertility rate by 25.6%, the highest in the European Union in the past decade. 

To preserve the cultural identities, flourishing economies, and political order given to the world by our developed allies, we must elect those willing to promote the creation of the family again. That is the only and best way to improve and ensure the world’s quality of life. 

Parker Miller is a 2024 Washington Examiner winter fellow.

Related articles

Share article

Latest articles