For the record, I think China had to do some draconian. Their population growth was well unsustainable and status quo would have been 10 fold worse than harmful effects of the one child policy! However, there are going to be some very NEGATIVE side effects to the one child policy that the China (and the world) will see over the next few decades. The one kid policy started in 1979 so it effected Chinese parents in their 20s-30s. Fast forward to the future in 2011, 32 years since the policy was enacted (China has stated they are extending the policy and I am sure it will keep going to 2020) and hese parents are between 52 and 62. The effects have not been felt yet for China. The parents effected by the one child policy haven't left the workforce yet and haven't started dying off yet. They will start leaving the work force over the next decade. Some will start dying off in the 2020s. Most will die off in the 2030s. Few will be left in the 2040s. The Negative Effects: First, the parents of the one child policy are still of working age, between 52 and 62. HOWEVER, over the next decade they will slowly but surly move past working age. By 2015 half will be over 60. By 2020 all will be over 60. Just as America is now facing the issue of too many baby boomers retiring, China will face it also. HOWEVER, China will be facing the issue of a 10x larger retirement population than working population. There will be numerous retirees for every one young worker! Healthcare is expensive! There will be a crisis. It could bankrupt China, esp if the US defaults on our loans and when China's economic growth stifles (which its almost assured to do). The burden on the young Chinese will be too over-welming and an impossible feat to overcome smoothly! Second, even if China gets rid of the one child policy by 2020, the lack of women will be a huge issue. By 2020 that will be 4 decades of tiny females births (due to selective abortion and abandonment). I saw something that there is 1 young woman for every 5 young men! In Chinese terms, 100 million woman for 500 million men! Ouch! The land of a billion virgins is a scary thought. Take out the issue of so many life-long virgins, which will lead to civil unrest! The birth rate per capita for the next Chinese generation will be much much less than under even the one child policy. Women might have more children, but with only 4 out of 5 men having children the total birth rate will be low. Third, the economic spiral down will be unavoidable. Free trade is becoming less popular and could come to a head. China's main economic advantage is that they have an enormous work force. Starting this decade more and more Chinese workers will be physically unable to keep up the strenous work load! Each and every year China's ginormous work force will get smaller and smaller. Their advantage will be less and less. Their economy will decline more and more. Lastly, with China's population and economic declines the separatist movements will grow louder and louder and might even look attractive to a struggling country. Once China's economic growth becomes a full on issue, Tibet, Taiwan and the East Turkestan Muslim Separatist. China has the military, man power, money and economic growth to beat down all of these separatist movement at the same time effortlessly. However, when the burden of the one child parents retiring, need care and healthcare grows by 2020, the Chinese young population taken on too much burden and China's economy slipping into chaos, they might not have the might to fight these movement effectly. Even if they do, it's very expensive to fight separatist movements. Bottom line: China's skyrocket to the top will come to a head over the next two decades. Eventually it will stabilize out, but the left's boner over how good China is doing is an illusion.