Japan as -anything But- Number One

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M.E. Sharpe, 1991 - Social Science - 303 pages
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Is Japan No. 1? Well, maybe it is if you only consider those sectors where it is particularly successful. But not if you add many others where its performance is mediocre or worse. Is Japan No. 1? Well, maybe it is if you ask the foreign "friends" who have made a career (and sometimes a fortune) as apologists of Japanese causes. But, if you ask the Japanese themselves, you will find that they are anything but satisfied. Is Japan No. 1? Well, maybe it is if you are taken in by the tatemae, i.e. the official version or how its admirers like to picture it. But it does not look so great once you perceive the honne, i.e. the realities of life in Japan. Is Japan No. 1? Well, maybe it is if you take what is best in Japan and contrast it to what is less good in foreign countries. But it does not compare so well if you mix the good with the bad in both places. No, the author does not think that Japan is a horrible place or that its leaders have made a complete mess of things. But, if you look closely, it is certainly not the extraordinary success it is frequently claimed to be. It is closer to the mean, with many serious problems that will only get worse if people foolishly assume it is No. 1.
  

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Contents

Foreword
7
Welfare What Is There To Be Entitled To?
13
SUPERIOR GRADES
29
Japanese Companies The AllMighty Kaisha
51
Industrial Policy Promoting And Meddling
69
SATISFACTORY GRADES
81
Education What Is Learning?
99
Crime Integrating The Criminal Element
125
UNSATISFACTORY GRADES
141
Society Discordant Harmonies
171
Internationalization Time To Join The World
197
INFERIOR GRADES
221
Amenities Be It Ever So Humble
243
Conclusion Japan As No 23 Or
273
Bibliography
291
Copyright

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About the author (1991)

Jon Woronoff is correspondent with Japan, businessman, consultant, journalist, and author.

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