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"Japan's 21st. Century Vision": The Big Picture for a New Era of Dynamism.

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  • "Japan's 21st. Century Vision": The Big Picture for a New Era of Dynamism.

    Hello All !

    I just returned from another great meeting with a private student of mine who happens to work for Koizumis' Ministry of Information. For a month I plan to discuss Japan's 21st Century Vision with G.P. and how it will relate to foreigners and Japanese alike.
    If anyone would like a hard copy of the original report just send me an address through a private e-mail. I will gladly pay for postage and mail you a copy. We gladly welcome input from anyone. The original report hasn't been published on line yet because it hasn't reached government approval . So far, the report has been discussed with several politicians and government official from various prefectures through-out Japan. Again, if you need a hard copy send me an address via private e-mail.

    What I hope to encourage is greater participation and involvement with issues involving Japan which ultimately will effect foreigners and Japanese. I and my partner hope to spread this information around this summer if all works out.

    See ya' around

    McTojo !
    Last edited by mcalpine; 2006-03-29, 01:31 PM.

  • #2
    Hmmm, funny....

    ... what I wonder is, if you would be so bold to use that picture (of your idol...) on your report with your "student"...

    Though I doubt your story, I'll give you a freebie to chew on anyway:

    Energy.

    Given Japan's nearly total dependence upon importing it's energy supply (oil, gas, coal, uranium), unless Japan can bring online alternate energy sources sooner than SOON, the life of foreigners here will become much more difficult (just as it will for the Nihonjin.)

    As witnessed today, just the mere mention of illness in the Saudi royals drives up the price of oil (in this case it was King Fahd, but it is his half brother the Crown Prince who supposedly really runs the country and that is the person to watch.)

    What will life in Japan be like when oil hits $60, $70, $80, $90, $100 and more per barrel? What will life be like in the winter when the gov't requests (maybe demands) that people under 50 years old not run their electric heaters (so there is enough electricity for the burgeoning aged population?)

    Do you really believe minimum wage laborers to leave their relatively warm countries (India, Bangledesh, Vietnam, Phillipines, etc.) to come to a country in which they will not be able to afford heat during the winter?

    Will English really be needed when the nation's future is dependent upon other nations which speak Chinese, Arabic, and Spanish?

    Currently the Japanese complain about their unemployment rate, but in reality it is one of the lowest in the world. But what will happen when that rate hits even 10% (which is still low compared to many places in the world?) How will the foreigner be looked upon by the natives when they believe their own livelihoods are at stake?

    Any government plan for the entire 21st century that doesn't mention energy on the first page is a fallacious exercise in pandering.

    Comment


    • #3
      Japan's obsession with the "immigration question" and the "foreigner question" and the "gaijin question" is so old-fashioned, it is boring. Other countries stopped being obsessed with these issues around the time of the end of the Second World War. Japan however has persevered with this morbid view that Japanese are somehow so special -- so touchingly, so fragiliy special -- that they can only live with other Japanese, or else they will wilt like flowers on the mantelpiece. The results of this racist obsession are playing themselves out in the form of Japan's economic decline and the drop of its population. It is a just a matter of cause and effect.
      Forgive me if I fall into rant mode, but everyone in Japan came from somewhere else at some point. There has always been a flow of humans in and out of Japan, so why stop that now. There are plenty of Japanese people who would love to leave Japan -- let them leave! There are plenty of foreign people who would love to move to Japan, myself included. Let us come! And I will do my bit for boosting the flagging Japanese birthrate, by siring my own tribe of illegitimate and legitimate half-caste Japanese children.

      Comment


      • #4
        rebuddle freetoken

        Originally posted by freetoken
        ... what I wonder is, if you would be so bold to use that picture (of your idol...) on your report with your "student"....
        Actually, many Japanese students know of Tojo and have no shame of him. However, I would never us the photo in any official setting.
        Originally posted by freetoken
        .. Though I doubt your story, I'll give you a freebie to chew on anyway:
        Please have no doubts. Try me[/QUOTE]



        Originally posted by freetoken
        Any government plan for the entire 21st century that doesn't mention energy on the first page is a fallacious exercise in pandering.
        Energy is just one of many issues that Japan is facing. I do agree with your point of view but I don't think it should be some front page issue at all ! Japan so far has done relatively well with its energy problem. Japan has extensive oil rights in so many countries even as we speak. Japan has invested billions of yen into Libya and Saudia Arabia for exclusive oil rights which have been in place for the last ten years now. Japan is also leading the world in innovative energy resources too. Just go to the Expo in Aichi ! Alternative energy is more adaptive in Japan and even as we speak we are beginning to see environmental friendly car, buses, and taxi's . Regarding winter seasons....well, I think you over exaggerated a little on that issue. Last year was the warmest winter in Japan and every year after that we will continue to see rising temperatures here thanks to global warming.
        Last edited by mcalpine; 2005-05-29, 05:46 AM.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Hei Dao
          Japan's obsession with the "immigration question" and the "foreigner question" and the "gaijin question" is so old-fashioned, it is boring. Other countries stopped being obsessed with these issues around the time of the end of the Second World War. .
          The question of immigration is still front and center in most countries and it's not boring.
          Just ask countries like the U.S. and Germany.

          Originally posted by Hei Dao
          Japan however has persevered with this morbid view that Japanese are somehow so special -- so touchingly, so fragiliy special -- that they can only live with other Japanese, or else they will wilt like flowers on the mantelpiece. .
          This has truth. Yes, Japanese are special and they do need to live with each other because they will wilt away like flowers. Japans society is very fragile and needs careful attention.

          Originally posted by Hei Dao
          The results of this racist obsession are playing themselves out in the form of Japan's economic decline and the drop of its population. It is a just a matter of cause and effect.
          Forgive me if I fall into rant mode, but everyone in Japan came from somewhere else at some point. There has always been a flow of humans in and out of Japan, so why stop that now. There are plenty of Japanese people who would love to leave Japan -- let them leave! There are plenty of foreign people who would love to move to Japan, myself included. Let us come! And I will do my bit for boosting the flagging Japanese birthrate, by siring my own tribe of illegitimate and legitimate half-caste Japanese children.
          No thank you we don't no outside seeding. Japan needs to focus on its own population crisis which will reach its peak in 2030 ! The report suggest that the population will loose 10 million people by 2030 ! The report mentions that we are in a reconsolidation period now and that we are streamlining are economy and centeralizing local government to fit an aging population.

          Comment


          • #6
            We all know that when the demographic crisis really starts to hit and the proverbial hits the fan, that it is all going to be blamed on foreigners.
            Japan's xenophobia is going to come back and bite it on the backside.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by J.T
              We all know that when the demographic crisis really starts to hit and the proverbial hits the fan, that it is all going to be blamed on foreigners.
              Japan's xenophobia is going to come back and bite it on the backside.
              Americans blame joblessness and outsourcing on illegal aliens who work for pennies. The Germans blame the asians and the muslims for the same thing. I think everybody can be a little xenophobic even me.

              Comment


              • #8
                A future to avoid.

                Any input would greatly be appreciated.

                1) Falling behind in economic partnerships
                2) Decrease in influence, passive response to world politics.
                3) Decrease in population, stagnated productivity
                4) Big government as a burden, highly dependent society.
                5) Entrenched disparity
                etc...

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Hei Dao
                  Japan's obsession with the "immigration question" and the "foreigner question" and the "gaijin question" is so old-fashioned, it is boring. Other countries stopped being obsessed with these issues around the time of the end of the Second World War. .
                  have you been in Swiss, where the anti-immigration movement is becoming bigger?
                  have you been to Germany, where the extreme right is at its best moment, due to 'anti-immigration' propaganda, and the problems with tuerkish people?
                  have you been in France, where the extreme right a le Penn, has more and more votes?
                  have you been to Argentina, where bolivians, people from peru, are second-hand citizens.?
                  recently, even Netherlands, is severly restricting immigrants "quotas"....

                  My opinion on Japanese immigration policy:
                  *) I like that you have to have a 4 year degree or 10 years expereince. Not so much trash, entering the country.
                  *) IRONICALLY, one of the very few things, a hippie-leftist (for humanitarian reasons), and a strong capitalist (for cheap labor, and free movement of labor, etc..), will agree, is that IMMIGRATION is good 'per se'. THANKS god, there is a country like Japan, that has achieved the economic miracle after the war, is the second biggest economy in the world, with leading companies in R&D, design, innovation, etc...like Toyota, Honda, Sony, Sharp, etc..and has done it WITHOUT immigration..0% immigration...., so you capitalist and hippie-leftist=> ____ OFF!!!
                  Japan is also the safest country in the world. Again, no inmigration.
                  Japan is the country with most 'harmony'-within the group (and I have been to many countires). Again, no immigration.
                  *) the problem is the entering in the workplace en masse of japanese females. in a newspaper, I read that 30% of ___ woman don't care to marry. we need japanese females back to their houses, and having kids. Importing thai and philipino hostesses doesn't work. Back, in my home country, 40% of babies come from immigrants (only 10% of population). These days women don't have kids, or only 1, to "feel what it is to be a mother"> RIDICULOUS!!!! My home country, is a SOCIAL CIRCUS....we need to stop the feminazi agenda, and get woman back to their houses, and having kids.!!! nough' said!!!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    FeminNazi...haha

                    *)
                    Originally posted by takai
                    the problem is the entering in the workplace en masse of japanese females. in a newspaper, I read that 30% of ___ woman don't care to marry. we need japanese females back to their houses, and having kids. Importing thai and philipino hostesses doesn't work. Back, in my home country, 40% of babies come from immigrants (only 10% of population). These days women don't have kids, or only 1, to "feel what it is to be a mother"> RIDICULOUS!!!! My home country, is a SOCIAL CIRCUS....we need to stop the feminazi agenda, and get woman back to their houses, and having kids.!!! nough' said!!!
                    I like the term "FemiNazi" movement. It's all too much at the wrong time for this country Japan.
                    good post !

                    McTojo

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      NOW< some may argue...well..., women don't have kids, because the governement doesn't provide enough kindergartens and care-centers, in Sweden, NOrway, Finnland,....

                      NOW> let me say a few things about these NORDIC countires.....

                      First, women in these countries have mastered the art of exploting the system, the media and the government, The figure of the father has been replaced by 'government'. A woman doesn't need protection and money from a man anymore. the GOVERNMENT provides her EVERYTHING....imagagine guys, if the government would provide us free sex with hot chicks, whenever we want with a six-pack of beer...ehheeh, who would need a GF? governemtns pay them health care, baby centers, and EVERYTHING they want....

                      second, Nordic countires, are RICH, becuase of NATURAL RESORUCES and TECHNOLOGY (Ericsson, Nokia -think that they have the size about 20% of ALL the stockmarket there). SO, here comes the IRONY....WHO works at the oil companies, extracting oil, fishing? MEN
                      Who has 100% of ALL patents in Ericsson and Nokia??? WHO are the TOP engineers??? MEN

                      Women just get the HR, Marketing, and 'business development' jobs, but EARN MORE than the top engineers (those who create value, and get the things done), becuase otherwise, the feminazis would sue the company...

                      To sum up, in the more 'modern' 'progressive' Nordic countires, Woman have mastered the art of:

                      1.) Create 10% of the value for the country
                      2.) receive 90% of benefits and tax payers' money

                      NOW> take the most indepent, and strongest Swedish woman, and place her in Japan. Tell her:"you have to work as hard as the salaryman, no fun, work and commute everyday from 7 to 11pm, and if you have kids, you have to take care of them by yourself. Guess what??? she will be very dependent, get married, have 3 kids, and doesn't want to work

                      NOW> take the most submissive and dependent Japanese female, and put her in Sweden. Tell her: "you can marry with Sweden men and have kids. If you are divorced, you will get the house, the kids, and he will pay money for you, every month, ...governmetn will pay you kindergartens, health, everything....you can still have many BF, and your former husband will still pay you money...if you have a baby, and you work, you can take a baby-holiday for three years, and after that, you can only work for 4 hours a day, and the company will still pay you 60% of the salary...,>>>what will she doooooo???

                      EXPECTATIONS< EXPECTATION>>>EXPECTATIONS is everything in LIFE.......
                      Last edited by takai; 2005-05-29, 11:27 PM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Hmmm, not encouraging....

                        First, let me say that it has been my intent for awhile in starting a thread about the future of Japan, and if a gaijin like myself (and many of the readers) have a place in a future Japan, looking at ideas such as buying a house, taxes, retirement, etc. So far I've put it off partly because I've sort of concluded that there aren't that many serious people here, but rather just the normal set of malcontents....

                        Nevertheless, going forward....

                        Originally posted by mcalpine

                        Energy is just one of many issues that Japan is facing. I do agree with your point of view but I don't think it should be some front page issue at all ! Japan so far has done relatively well with its energy problem. Japan has extensive oil rights in so many countries even as we speak. Japan has invested billions of yen into Libya and Saudia Arabia for exclusive oil rights which have been in place for the last ten years now.
                        This is not encouraging, assuming you are indeed giving input to a serious policy wonk who is writing some sort of position paper....

                        Ok, why isn't it encouraging?: you are just reinforcing the "island mentality" that is so prevalent here, when indeed Japan is so dependent (in it's current lifestyle) as an element in the international economic system.

                        Even assuming the so called "oil rights" you mention materializes into actual petroleum delivered (not a given btw), you've totally overlooked that all the world is siphoning from one big pot. For example, If Libya promises to deliver Japan X millions of barrels of oil, all that means is that Libya doesn't have those X millions to deliver to everyone *else*. Why is that a problem? Because it is those *others* who (currently) buy the Japanese goods that brings money to Japan, and who grow some of the food that Japan eats, and supplies most of the raw material that Japan uses (which is not found on the Japanese islands.)

                        There is much to be written about energy, and Japan. You've totally missed the importance of what is happening today wrt oil (energy). Perhaps when I have more time I will write more. Don't ge me wrong, I'm not one of the doomsday "Peak Oil as a religion"-believer, but there is much to watch on the energy markets, and oil is truly turning from being just a valuable resource into what would be called precious resource. People have died for it, and will continue to die for it.

                        Japan's modern history is not without precedent here. Tell me, did Japan's imperialistic moves into China/Korea have *anything* to do with getting raw products? Did the American (and British) blockade of oil entering Japan enter into Japan's decision to bomb Pearl Harbor, as some people claim (honest questions btw, not 100% rhetorical)?

                        Boy, there really is a lot to explore here. Why is the SDF really in Iraq? (I'm afraid I've just opened up this discussion to all the Bush bashers and America haters.... oh well... perhaps someday the owners of Gaijinpot will find it worthwhile to have more strictly moderated forums...)


                        Originally posted by mcalpine

                        Japan is also leading the world in innovative energy resources too. Just go to the Expo in Aichi ! Alternative energy is more adaptive in Japan and even as we speak we are beginning to see environmental friendly car, buses, and taxi's .
                        International fairs have been showing energy gadgets for decades. Putting on shows is not the same as delivering the goods.

                        Originally posted by mcalpine

                        Regarding winter seasons....well, I think you over exaggerated a little on that issue. Last year was the warmest winter in Japan and every year after that we will continue to see rising temperatures here thanks to global warming.
                        Yes, I was being a bit hyperbolic, but only a bit. Remember, one of the most important of all industries is agriculture, and it is also somewhat labor intensive (few robots in the fields.) So it is naturally an industry in which foreign manual laborers would be needed (much as in the US today.) And in Japan, the northern half of the country (where it snows for sure) is the agricultrally significant half, compared to say south Kinki where there is only a bit of citrus and figs, etc.

                        Anyway, there really is much to be written, probably too much for this board. If I had the task to write the paper your student has (and indeed I've written plenty of gov't whitepapers - and was even sought out for doing them...), I'd start it out with something like this:

                        "The defining element of the 21st century will be the wars over energy, and Japan's definition in the 21st century will be her choice of which of these wars to participate in, and on which side...."

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          One question

                          Originally posted by freetoken
                          I've sort of concluded that there aren't that many serious people here, but rather just the normal set of malcontents....."
                          Do you include yourself in that characterisation?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            rebuddle Freetoken

                            Originally posted by freetoken
                            Ok, why isn't it encouraging?: you are just reinforcing the "island mentality" that is so prevalent here, when indeed Japan is so dependent (in it's current lifestyle) as an element in the international economic system. .
                            Can you name any other island who doesn't have an island mentality or any other country for that matter ? Who Freetoken ? The eIsland Mentality'. This mentality is basically thinking that the rest of the world, especially its ebad' trends can be kept at bay because of the very insularity of the country. In past centuries, following European colonization of the world, this eIsland Mentality' became almost exclusively identified with the Anglo-Saxon world: the British Isles of course, the USA, Australia, New-Zeland became the core component of such a group, with of course some other big islands sharing the same vision such as Japan for instance.


                            Originally posted by freetoken
                            Even assuming the so called "oil rights" you mention materializes into actual petroleum delivered (not a given btw), you've totally overlooked that all the world is siphoning from one big pot. For example, If Libya promises to deliver Japan X millions of barrels of oil, all that means is that Libya doesn't have those X millions to deliver to everyone *else*. Why is that a problem? Because it is those *others* who (currently) buy the Japanese goods that brings money to Japan, and who grow some of the food that Japan eats, and supplies most of the raw material that Japan uses (which is not found on the Japanese islands.).
                            Sure we siphon oil from one big pot but do we actually have to ? Does the U.S. need to depend on foreign oil to sustain its economy? The answer is a resounding NO. Not when the U.S. is sitting on 500 years worth of oil from the Alaskan reserves ! So why do we continue to do business with middle eastern countries who control 32% of the worlds oil (excluding OPEC) ? And we have to remember, that Japans dependents on foreign oil is not as important as it was during WW2 ! Japan is in an era of reconsolidation where alternative sources of energy are becoming more adaptive and are being used today.



                            Originally posted by freetoken
                            "The defining element of the 21st century will be the wars over energy, and Japan's definition in the 21st century will be her choice of which of these wars to participate in, and on which side...."
                            Freetoken, who sound as if Japan is in some sort of energy crisis ? Your assertion about energy is out of sync with what the real problem at hand is, and that is, is that Japan is facing a severe population shortage. The current population is expected to drop by 10 million by the year 2030 which is huge in comparison to any other country ! especially when you consider the current dip in the population now as we speak. Energy would be more of a front an center issue if we had a population to maintain. So far, there are no energy demands great enough to warrant the use of the term "Energy War"....hahaha...I chuckle at that. Energy War ???
                            Why should Japan be so demanding about its OIL ?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              ok its a good thread. The issue is complex and its worthy of debate.

                              As I see it it boils down to 4 issues.

                              Whats wrong with the current system
                              How can we/they fix it
                              What is history of decision making in Japan
                              Knowing what are the next big decisions and who is going to make them

                              The current system as I see it is basic sexual discrimination. Despite the feminazi comment (no doubt a rush limbaugh fan) the facts are that women can do the job just as well as a man can. I will call that a fear of gynocracy. Until the system utilizes women it will continue to hamper its own efficiency. Thus all the decisions will have an inherit flaw to its design. The ever lowering birth rate is proof positive of a system run by men, incapable of reform. Women are not simply baby factories, which appears to be the current thinking among the bushido class of wage earning men.

                              The current system appears to draw massive building projects from ever decreasing coffers. Nagoya has a brand new airport, yet doesn't have enough staff to process international passengers. Many of my business clients now politely refuse Nagoya departures in favor of Narita. Yet the Tokai government has broken ground on the Shizuoka airport. PORK PORK PORK.

                              Efficiency with regards to use of energy. 100's of Taxicabs in idle mode without customers for hours at a time. Buses and trucks running on uncleaned diesel engines. Business men in suits on an August day. (addressed by mr koizumi) all add to the problem.

                              How can they change it ?
                              they need a young turk or an older statesman unafraid to make some chances. Or face a slow deterioration of national power to other countries with more resources.

                              Decision making in Japan appears to be done by 70 and 80 year old men. The system is fine as long as it works, but it resists change. Until now the system has allowed Japan to emerge as the worlds second biggest economy, but as this countries average age increases I see this issue getting worse, not better. Profits will be squeezed ever tighter due to inefficiency and conservative ojiisan boardroom politics. Call it gerontocracy.

                              A trip to any Jetro office will prove that the system is breaking. No nihonjin under the age of 60 goes there or hen gainjin looking to make a buck. Any request for information on setting up production in Japan gets raised eyebrows and a "junto?"

                              What is Japan's future ?

                              IMO with banking reform, Japan can be Asia's financier thus insuring a comfortable future for at least the next 100 or so years, despite the aforementioned issues.

                              Ever decreasing tax base revenues will put strain on the current pork barrell projects. As the population shrinks there will be a shortage of basic manual labor as educated Japanese seek the white collar jobs. Retirement age should increase to 65 or more in order to maintain a balance of payments into the system.

                              The fact that it is an island culture, it should make it relatively easier to import labor to make up the shortfall. A lack of Farm-workers will be a major problem over the long run. The government needs to beef up its immigration policy and improve the monitoring system. Nursing needs will spike and foreign labor will be necessary to make up the shortfall. The sooner the gerontocracy realizes this the better.

                              A sustainable nuclear power policy needs to addressed. Its the best solution for Japan in light of 50 dollar oil barrels. Long term domestic energy policy needs a kick in the pants.

                              Lots more to the issue.

                              What I am saying is that the system is not working efficiently but still turns out a pretty decent version of a working democracy. If they cross their T and dot the I, Japan can maintain its leadership position for the forseeable future.

                              I will not comment on the SDF because the reason for its deployment has more to do with the Bush adminstration and its Iraq rebuilding contracts system.

                              Comment

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