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Old 09-02-2014, 03:24 PM   #451
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I honestly try to listen. Usually some things are valid. American culture often seems violent, disposable, and celebrity-worshiping.

but do you think that's all it is?
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Old 09-02-2014, 03:26 PM   #452
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I'm not sure what you're trying to say here, Aeon - could you clarify?

Are you asking if the Japanese are more deserving of privilege in their society than other minority populations?
No, I am suggesting there will always be some "privilege" that one race gives to their own. It just so happens that whites (at least for now) are the majority in the US. The Japanese are the extreme majority in - well - Japan.

Since we try out best to be fair and civilized, we enact laws to prevent racial discrimination. However, I suspect there will always be at least some bias for our own race/culture.
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Old 09-02-2014, 03:26 PM   #453
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but do you think that's all it is?
Of course not - my point is that I am not offended by the criticism, that there is some truth to it.
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Old 09-02-2014, 03:49 PM   #454
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I suspect there will always be at least some bias for our own race/culture.
But a lot of white people, the people who have the institutionalized privilege, don't recognize that it even exists. Isn't that a pretty major issue?
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Old 09-02-2014, 03:54 PM   #455
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But a lot of white people, the people who have the institutionalized privilege, don't recognize that it even exists. Isn't that a pretty major issue?
I do not agree that there is much "institutionalized privilege" left. We've enacted the proper laws, and those laws need to be enforced. As for non-institutionalized privilege, I doubt that can ever be fully removed in any of us.
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Old 09-02-2014, 03:58 PM   #456
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"Institutional" isn't simply about the creation of laws. It also encompasses the inconsistent application of justice.
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Old 09-02-2014, 04:00 PM   #457
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What is black culture?

Exactly. I think as a society we should stay away from these lazy terms.


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Old 09-02-2014, 05:44 PM   #458
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Do the Japanese recognize Japanese privilege in Japan?
Not really, which is a large part of the problem they are having with their economy. They are insular, anti-immigrant and frankly structurally racist and ethnophobic as a society.

It isn't going to take them anywhere productive over the next 100 years.
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Old 09-02-2014, 10:55 PM   #459
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Not really, which is a large part of the problem they are having with their economy. They are insular, anti-immigrant and frankly structurally racist and ethnophobic as a society.

It isn't going to take them anywhere productive over the next 100 years.
The Myth of Japan’s Failure
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Old 09-02-2014, 10:56 PM   #460
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double post
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Old 09-03-2014, 12:12 AM   #461
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Anecdotal though it may be, when I read the beginnings of that article, I thought to myself, "I remember Japan being incredibly pleasant, and I saw a fairly good portion of it while I was there." I then chuckled when I read this paragraph:

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As longtime Japan watchers like Ivan P. Hall and Clyde V. Prestowitz Jr. point out, the fallacy of the “lost decades” story is apparent to American visitors the moment they set foot in the country. Typically starting their journeys at such potent symbols of American infrastructural decay as Kennedy or Dulles airports, they land at Japanese airports that have been extensively expanded and modernized in recent years.
Basically exactly what my initial reaction was.


Not sure what this has to do with the topic, but, just felt like sharing.
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Old 09-03-2014, 01:36 AM   #462
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Anecdotal though it may be, when I read the beginnings of that article, I thought to myself, "I remember Japan being incredibly pleasant, and I saw a fairly good portion of it while I was there." I then chuckled when I read this paragraph:



Basically exactly what my initial reaction was.


Not sure what this has to do with the topic, but, just felt like sharing.
I've not visited Japan (but I would love to). Yes, you would think that Tokyo was a crumbling dystopic nightmare based on how often they use Japan as a prime example of what NOT to do with an economy.

Yet, every time I see it on TV or hear about it from travelers - it's clean, modern, safe, vibrant...etc.
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Old 09-03-2014, 01:44 AM   #463
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I visited Tokyo, Kyoto and the Kanagawa prefecture, so I did see a big city, a traditional city, and then a more residential area, so I feel like I got a fairly good experience of that part of the country.

That being said, I didn't visit either the far north or the far south, so I can't speak to the less populated areas of Japan.
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Old 09-03-2014, 07:36 AM   #464
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AEON, your article is backwards-looking and focused on Japan's emergence from the lost decades.

That says NOTHING of Japan's current and extremely serious demographic problem. Look into this a bit closer and you will find alarm bells regarding Japan's future over the next century, just like I said.
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Old 09-03-2014, 07:42 AM   #465
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Here we go.

Japan’s Demographic Crisis: Any Way Out? | The Diplomat

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The arithmetic of population growth is simple — more citizens need to be added to the population pool than are being lost every year. Natural births and natural deaths account for only part of this equation; the other half is captured by immigration and emigration. In Japan’s case, population dynamics so far have been affected primarily by a decline in births. Given high life expectancies and a generational population boom in the decades following the Second World War, Japan’s population pyramid is top-heavy, with over 20 percent of the population 65 or older. Furthermore, Japan’s current fertility rate, according to the World Bank, sits at 1.39 births per woman — one of the lowest in the world.

One Japanese government estimate finds that should current trends continue, Japan’s population will have shrunk to a paltry 87 million from its current size of 127 million by 2060. Of those 87 million Japanese, as high as 40 percent of the population could be 65 or older. Not only is that a recipe for a social security disaster, but it would also rob Japan of any capacity to remain competitive on the world stage.

Reports emerging from Japan in the first few months of 2014 allege that the Abe government is eyeing adjusting Japan’s restrictive immigration policies to help alleviate the looming demographic crisis. According to a government simulation, one possible solution for Japan at the moment is to begin accepting 200,000 immigrants per year starting in 2015 and raising the fertility rate to 2.07 births per woman. If both of these criteria are met, Japan’s 2060 scenario looks less grim, with a projected population of slightly over 100 million.
Note in the last paragraph that these are "alleged" policy changes, nothing is firm and it is Japan's long-standing ethnophobia and the way they treat outsiders that creates a huge barrier to immigration.

From The Economist:

Japan's demography: The incredible shrinking country | The Economist

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The looming crisis has so alarmed Japan’s government that in 2005 it created a ministerial post to raise fertility. Last year a 20-member panel under the ministry produced a desperate wish list to reduce what it calls “deterrents” to marriage and child rearing. It included a proposal to assign gynaecologists to patients on a lifelong basis and even to provide financial support for unmarried Japanese who undertake "spouse-hunting" projects.

Immigration is being approached as a last resort. Even so the prime minister faces tough choices. The United Nations estimates that without raising its fertility rate, Japan would need to attract about 650,000 immigrants a year. There is no precedent for that level of immigration in this country, which is still a largely homogenous society.

Roughly 2% of Japan’s population is foreign. And even this figure includes large numbers of permanent residents—mostly Chinese and Koreans—who have been here for generations. Tellingly, the recent story about the government’s discussion of immigration broke in the right-wing Sankei newspaper (in Japanese), which is especially unlikely to embrace the idea of a Chinese family living on every Japanese street.

Japan’s demographic dilemma grows more urgent by the year. Last week the government passed the nation’s largest-ever budget—a mammoth $937-billion package swelled by welfare and pension spending. Japan is already weighed down by one of the world’s largest public debt burdens. With its inverted population pyramid, where will it find the tax base to repay this debt, and to care for its growing population of elderly?
This is really, really bad. But hey, so long as the Tokyo airport is nice and shiny...
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