A couple of years ago Australia's Howard government had Treasurer Peter Costello out there "warning" that if demographic trends continued, Australia's population would halve by natural attrition by 2050 and the people should make a point of having three kids, "one for mum, one for dad and one for the country".
Apart from sounding creepily like other totalitarian governments of the past, and ignoring the reality that mum and dad had to work every hour available just to put a roof over their heads with no suggestion that "the country" would be practically supportive (state supported child care being yet another anathema to these right wingers) the reality of Australia already being grossly overpopulated never hit the agenda.
Now the Japanese are doing the same. Tired workers urged to go home and multiply.
The drive to persuade employers that their staff would be better off at home than staying late at the office comes as health experts warn many couples are simply too tired to have sex. A survey of married couples under 50 found that more than a third had not had sex in the previous month. A study by Durex found the average couple has sex 45 times a year, less than half the global average of 103 times.
Japan's birth rate of 1.34 is among the lowest in the world and falls well short of the 2.07 children needed to keep the population stable.
If it persists, demographers say, the population will drop from its peak of 127.7 million in 2006 to 95 million by 2050.
If we are to have a sustainable tenancy on this planet, we are all going to have to face the facts that we cannot sustain our current consumption of finite resources and destruction of renewable ones. It makes perfect sense for island nations, especially those with high consumption patterns, to lead the way in reducing population and building the economic models that enable us to deal with those falling populations.
It wont be easy, especially for those indoctrinated into the yeast culture of breed or die. But unless we find new ways to deal with our impact on the planet, we are pretty close to the planet starting to impact on us.
Australia, NZ, Japan, all have the golden opportunity, what's the bet we throw it away in the isnane chase to have the most toys at the end?