28 December 2012

The Future of a Contraception Society? No Future at All

Think Children of Men, by P.D. James, as you read this story. Japan is the first country to face this, but won't be the last. The meek shall inherit the earth...

No heir to run the company? Why adult ‘adoption’ is big business in Japan

...Finding suitable heirs, however, is not as simple as it once was. Japan's sliding birthrate has created many one-child families, and while daughters can manage the company back office, the face out front in this still chauvinistic country must be male, says Chieko Date. She is one of dozens of marriage consultants who bring together ambitious young men and the marriageable daughters of business families. Ms Date is proud of her record. "We bring happiness to both sides," she says.

If the meetings go well, the men agree to drop their own surname and be adopted by their new bride's family, becoming both the head of the family and its business. Ms Date's consultancy claims to have brokered 600 of these marriages – known as "mukoyoshi" – over the past decade. "We believe that this cannot be just a business transaction," she says. If the couples don't like each other, the marriage and the business will fail.

Ms Date screens the men carefully, going only for "top-class" candidates. "I've talked to 20,000 men over the past decade and successfully brokered hundreds of marriages, and I haven't heard of a single divorce," she adds. Just in case, the families of prospective wives will often do a deep background check on their future adoptees, to make sure they don't come loaded with debt, and they're not gay.

Remarkably, some families will bypass a biological son for an adoptee if they feel that nature has shortchanged them – a practice that occurs with "some regularity" says Dr Mehrotra....


Fr. Andrew said...

Shortchaged by nature? Sounds like GATTACA at the end as well.

LMG said...

Wow! Why can't the son-in-law keep his name and run the business?

P.S. Timman, could you choose an easier code pattern for us to decipher? The picture is usually fuzzy and dark. It is harder to comment on your blog than to order products from a secure sight. :p