I could not disagree more. I appreciate the seriousness of your response and I don't mean to belittle you at all by saying this, but you have a fundamentally conservative worldview I don't share at all in that you think the answers to social ills lie backward. In my view the answers - if there are any - lie forward, not back. As you ably argued in your prior post, capitalism destroyed the old familial and clan-based attachments communities had. The new relations of production detached people from their land and packed them into factories, and eventually into the skyscraper shoeboxes of the modern city.The problem with breeding and raising children in mass state-run facilities is that it breaks down the fundamental fabrics of society, which is the institution of the family. Not the "nuclear family" that the West promotes, but the extended, clan-based family that humanity has evolved around for hundreds of thousands of years.
I applaud capitalism for having done this. I don't have any sentimental attachments to old traditions and relationships, and despite its pathologies capitalism has managed to raise human productivity and technological advancement to heights antecedent societies couldn't have dreamt. These relationships have become untenable; there are still clan-based societies that demonstrate by their example just what can be expected from them in the modern age: Syria and Libya.
My proposal replaces both the backward petty regionalism and tribalism of the clan-based social fabric and the cultural wasteland of capitalism with a much better fabric. These children would grow up with the idea of China itself as their family and understand their duty to it.
That depends on how you define "family." As I pointed out above, these children would grow up with the idea of the state as their extended family and themselves as their immediate family.The family is the foundation of society. Every social function derives from it. Your first and strongest relationships come from your family. They form the bed rock of bonds from which other relationships grow, the basis of cultural transmission, and the most basic reason for collaboration. This latter aspect is particularly important, because children learn to care about others through their interactions with their family, who provide them with love without condition. You can't get that from hired nurses.
There is a loose historical precedent to this: the janissaries of the Ottoman Empire. These were military units famed for their cohesion and discipline formed by abducting young children from Christian families, converting them to Islam, and raising them in military camps (the legacy of this institution is a large part of the reason there's such hatred between Muslims and Christians in the Balkans today). These children formed very close bonds with one another and eventually became a powerful political force.
Of course, in my idea the children wouldn't be abducted but born to surrogate mothers and they would be raised to be scientists and engineers (primarily, they could of course choose to study whatever they wish once they were old enough to make the decision), not soldiers.
As I stated previously, that's a function of the children being unwanted rather than being raised in orphanages per se. Unwanted children born to conventional families often exhibit the same pathologies.Children without families, who grow up in orphanages, are often "broken"; they suffer from problems like persistent insecurity, anxiety, delinquency, depression, anger, and aggression. Even if this can be solved with better institutional care, there is still no telling what the effects on society at large will be. When these children graduate as adults and begin to interact with natural families, it is likely there will be conflict and resentment. That could cause serious social problems and divides within society, and the consequences are not in any way predictable.
That's reasonable. I was motivated by a desire to solve this demographic problem in its most extreme, caricatured manifestation because it's the only argument China-haters have with even a semblance of validity, so I accept that my solution has a radical character. I feel better knowing that it's sitting in the desk of some government planning bureau and can be pulled out should the need arise.Just as importantly, however, you don't need to go this extreme. Solving the modern fertility problem is just about changing the reward incentive. Fix the addiction to Western consumerism. Reward the family over the individual. Send the signal to single people that they can either start families themselves, or see their extra income go to support those that do.
Most likely, the above would work; and if it doesn't, then we can talk about extreme solutions.