Mark Steyn has been writing about the demographic crisis, especially in Europe, for some time. It was the focus of his book, America Alone: The End of the World as We Know It. And finally, someone is starting to listen.
The Denver Post reported yesterday about a Russian area that has decided to tackle the problem with prizes.
A Russian region of Ulyanovsk has found a novel way to fight the nation's birth-rate crisis: It has declared Sept. 12 the Day of Conception and for the third year running is giving couples time off from work to procreate.
The hope is for a brood of babies exactly nine months later on Russia's national day. Couples who "give birth to a patriot" during the June 12 festivities win money, cars, refrigerators and other prizes.
Ulyanovsk, about 550 miles east of Moscow, has held similar contests since 2005. Since then, the number of competitors, and the number of babies born to them, has been on the rise.
The 2007 grand prize went to Irina and Andrei Kartuzov, who received a UAZ-Patriot, a sport utility vehicle. Other contestants won video cameras, TVs, refrigerators and washing machines.
Let's hear it for Irina and Andrei, who have done their patriotic duty and reaped the rewards for it.
And let's hear it for the commenters at the end of the article, the first of whom (doktorbombay)displayed the typical lefty lack of a sense of humor about it:
Population growth worldwide is a major cause of global warming. Current population levels are not sustainable, how are we going to sustain even more of us? How about Russia opening it's doors to more immigration rather than encouraging residents to procreate?
How tediously predictable of him.
Personally, I think the contest is a great idea. It sure beats the alternative, which is ethnic extinction.