Japan has been at the forefront of weakening GDP/wages/growth, deteriorating demographics, elevated sovereign debt and extreme monetary policy. Of all the major economies, given its existing debt burden and aging population, Japan is arguably the closest to Helicopter money.
Post 2012, policy (Abenomics) aimed at stimulating demand, generating wage growth and inflation has failed with respect to the specific objectives set. But then again, what is an optimal level of consumption in a declining demographic paradigm? Perhaps in the modern world it is one which drives growth to the point that current debt levels become manageable, or where risky assets provide returns commensurate with the consumption liabilities expected to be provided by them. In this context, global Central Banks have been consciously attempting to manufacture growth for at least a decade. Helicopter Money would however break this intercession, acknowledging that only more money supply and more debt relative to growth can support the expenditure/infrastructure side of the balance sheet: it is difficult to comprehend just how the asset side of the balance sheet would evolve in such circumstances. I suspect that there would need to be an adjustment, a reset, but even that would be only half the story. That said, on to Japan:
Japanese real GDP growth has been sliding heavily since the bursting of its own asset bubble starting in 1990: