Welcome to Japan Watching

Wrong About Japan

"When I grow up I'm going to live in Tokyo". With this declaration to his father, Peter Carey, Charley instigated their trip to Tokyo -- and inspired Carey's book about the trip, "Wrong About Japan".

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Japan's dysfunctional politics

Japan's triple crisis of earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster was an exceptional and unprecedented event. So why didn't Japan respond in an exceptional and unprecedented way?

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An Asian century?

The rapid rise of Asia over the past half century has been one of the world's most successful stories of economic development.  But can Asia continue the good work, and fully realize the potential of an Asian Century?  Or will it trip over and stumble like Japan has done for the past two decades?

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Japan & Korea: a tale of two countries

Over the past two decades, as Japan has gradually slipped down the OECD ladder in terms of GDP per capita, Korea has progressively climbed the same ladder.  It's just a matter of time before Korea overtakes its neighbor.

How could this happen?

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"The Japan That Can't Decide"

So what's wrong with Japan?  It may all be summed up in the title, "The Japan That Can't Decide", of a new book by Kevin Maher.  This work distills the wisdom of his 30 years' experience working for the US State Department, most recently as its Director of the Office of Japanese Affairs.

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Japan’s sex industry

Every country has a sex industry.  Japan’s is unique by its size, cultural acceptance and links with the Japanese mafia.  It is also unique by the scale of human trafficking for sexual exploitation which the government has never been sufficiently serious about tackling.  

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