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Old November 13th, 2012, 12:47 PM   #31

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Originally Posted by Dragon View Post
I would argue that many countries (first world or third world) do poorly because of laziness. If they had a work ethic like the Japanese I think they would do better.
It's amazing how many people actually believe this, even though there is a complete lack of any supporting facts or statistical data.

If we use average hours worked per week as an indicator for "hard work" (I don't know any better indicator that can be used), then we see that Germany is the "laziest" country in the world, with an average of only 25.6 hours worked per week (http://247wallst.com/2012/07/18/coun...-work-least/3/), with the average German enjoying 15.3 hours of leisure time per day. Despite this, they remained one of the best-performing economies in the West, with a growth rate of over 3% for 2011-2012. That is higher than Japan's growth rate, by the way.

Last edited by civfanatic; November 13th, 2012 at 12:59 PM.
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Old November 16th, 2012, 09:29 PM   #32
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I thought the Korean War had contributed greatly to the recovery and rise of the Japanese economy in the post-WWII era _ Japanese industries manufacturing massive amounts of armory and what other industrial goods may be needed for the US and UN forces to fight the war on the Korean Peninsula.

Japan also had a lot of its wartime heavy industries intact, along with the technology that it had developed to produce better weapons, etc, which could be used for general industrial needs and be turned into consumer products. So with such technologies and a whole array of industries and factories that remained intact (because the WWI ended before US forces made a landing on the main Japanese island) Japan was able to put these unscathed assets to use and get the factories operating again to meet the demand for arms for the Korean War. Which I think helped lay the foundation for the recovery of the Japanese economy, and for that very reason, Japan is almost always 2-3 decades ahead of Korea in economic performance and technological advances. (Korea has been trying to catch up and import what it can from Japan in terms of know-how as it pursued economic rises) But with Japan stuck in a stagnant economy, SKorea is catching fast. But it's doubtful any real catching up will happen in a decade or two.

Anybody know any real link between the Korean War and how much it helped Japan get off to a robust economic start after the WWII?
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Old November 16th, 2012, 09:33 PM   #33
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also.. japanese work ethics


Japan is a multipolar country, in other words, it's not as centralized as its neighbors in terms of political power. probably has to do with the long history of divisions among shoguns, and the only way people could survive and carry on with their lives in such a competitive political environment was for them to be the most skilled at what they were supposed to be doing, thus, the high level of competency in a lot of what they do for living. This, I think, helped Japan develop an economy that was fuller and more thorough and more diverse in competency: if a kitchen producer was the best locally, it was also the best globally, because it had beaten so much local competition already.

Just my two cents..
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Old November 17th, 2012, 07:25 AM   #34

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Originally Posted by demarche View Post
I thought the Korean War had contributed greatly to the recovery and rise of the Japanese economy in the post-WWII era _ Japanese industries manufacturing massive amounts of armory and what other industrial goods may be needed for the US and UN forces to fight the war on the Korean Peninsula.

Japan also had a lot of its wartime heavy industries intact, along with the technology that it had developed to produce better weapons, etc, which could be used for general industrial needs and be turned into consumer products. So with such technologies and a whole array of industries and factories that remained intact (because the WWI ended before US forces made a landing on the main Japanese island) Japan was able to put these unscathed assets to use and get the factories operating again to meet the demand for arms for the Korean War. Which I think helped lay the foundation for the recovery of the Japanese economy, and for that very reason, Japan is almost always 2-3 decades ahead of Korea in economic performance and technological advances. (Korea has been trying to catch up and import what it can from Japan in terms of know-how as it pursued economic rises) But with Japan stuck in a stagnant economy, SKorea is catching fast. But it's doubtful any real catching up will happen in a decade or two.

Anybody know any real link between the Korean War and how much it helped Japan get off to a robust economic start after the WWII?

Erm, I've never heard that before, that Japan had a lot of unscathed heavy industrial assets at the end of WWII.
I did hear Curtis LeMay say that by the time of Hiroshima the USAAF and the USN air wing were running out of targets.

Just saying, happy if you can prove me wrong......I haven't read too much specifically on the post-war situation/damage in Japan.
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Old November 17th, 2012, 08:56 AM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dragon
I would argue that many countries (first world or third world) do poorly because of laziness. If they had a work ethic like the Japanese I think they would do better.
Quote:
Originally Posted by civfanatic View Post
It's amazing how many people actually believe this, even though there is a complete lack of any supporting facts or statistical data.

If we use average hours worked per week as an indicator for "hard work" (I don't know any better indicator that can be used), then we see that Germany is the "laziest" country in the world, with an average of only 25.6 hours worked per week (Countries Where People Work Least - 24/7 Wall St.), with the average German enjoying 15.3 hours of leisure time per day. Despite this, they remained one of the best-performing economies in the West, with a growth rate of over 3% for 2011-2012. That is higher than Japan's growth rate, by the way.
Our Civfanatic has some hard evidence and a good point.

Arguably, at face value any truly generalized collective Laziness would be simply nonsensical from an evolutionary standpoint.
Any truly overwhelmingly lazy nations are probably not among us any more.
Simply because the mere survival has required hard work virtually everywhere far more often than not all along History.

Notoriously including so many colonial and equivalent nations so systematically and compulsively forced to forever work for any colonial master and which BTW are as a whole currently performing so impressively bad under basically any economic standard.


That said, IMHO (just that!) there is actually not any serious disagreement here.

Because the successful stories of let say Japan (the OP) and other Far East Tigers has depended fundamentally of the carefully & systematically planned national collective hard work, not just any unqualified hard work.

Naturally, any colonial or colonial-like hard work (e.g. plenty of post-colonial examples) is a priori intended for the master's improvement, and only potentially incidentally related with the own local improvement; in fact, such hard work is often objectively directed against any local improvement.

On the OP, one of the main "secrets" of Japan is that it was never ever any colony, not even under the rule of the Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers General MacArthur.

Arguably with even more hard work, especially the kind of systematically planned collective hard work mentioned above (presumably largely related to local cultural factors) some of the former colonies of the region (including former colonies of Japan itself) have been able to achieve impressive economic performances, sometimes even reaching First World status.
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Old November 17th, 2012, 09:46 AM   #36

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The Japanese also have, IMO, better work ethics. Take for example Haruka Nishimatsu, former CEO of JAL. He pays himself less than his pilots, takes the bus to work, eats with his employees, and gave up his office. Do CEOs do that in America? Nope, they get bonuses.

http://boingboing.net/2011/02/25/jap...nes-ceo-p.html
Excuse me but JAL got into its **** because of its crap work ethic.
He's not doing that because he is so kind but it's the only way to survive in the Japanese society. It is expected of him.
JAL was too proud for many years to even admit they were making minus figures, too proud to lower their prices because "they were Japan's flagship airline". They constantly denied that anything was wrong until they couldn't lie anymore.

Japanese work long and hard but don't necessarliy more done in those longer hours. Japanese traditions still play a big role in their working world.
You just don't go home before the boss, even if you have nothing more to do.
There is a law now that says overtime has to be paid but almost no one asks for it. Overtime is expected of you the younger you are and the newer to the company the more overtime you work, the less holiday you are asking for even if you technically have a right to it.
If your boss makes a mistake and it falls back on you you will say it's your fault even if it isn't. That's also expected.
Money presents are still very common if you want to see your child or yourself in a certain position or in a certain school (or if you want to have a certain visa).

Sorry if this is off topic it's just, I think people rarely realize how corrupted the Japanese business world is and how bound to the politics of the country they have this rosy googles view when it comes to Japan.

I love the country too, if I didn't I wouldn't have lived there or learned the language but because of that I can't ignore the bad stuff that's going on. It's far from the perfect Asian country many people think it is.
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Old November 17th, 2012, 03:17 PM   #37

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stephy View Post
Excuse me but JAL got into its **** because of its crap work ethic.
He's not doing that because he is so kind but it's the only way to survive in the Japanese society. It is expected of him.
JAL was too proud for many years to even admit they were making minus figures, too proud to lower their prices because "they were Japan's flagship airline". They constantly denied that anything was wrong until they couldn't lie anymore.

Japanese work long and hard but don't necessarliy more done in those longer hours. Japanese traditions still play a big role in their working world.
You just don't go home before the boss, even if you have nothing more to do.
There is a law now that says overtime has to be paid but almost no one asks for it. Overtime is expected of you the younger you are and the newer to the company the more overtime you work, the less holiday you are asking for even if you technically have a right to it.
If your boss makes a mistake and it falls back on you you will say it's your fault even if it isn't. That's also expected.
Money presents are still very common if you want to see your child or yourself in a certain position or in a certain school (or if you want to have a certain visa).

Sorry if this is off topic it's just, I think people rarely realize how corrupted the Japanese business world is and how bound to the politics of the country they have this rosy googles view when it comes to Japan.

I love the country too, if I didn't I wouldn't have lived there or learned the language but because of that I can't ignore the bad stuff that's going on. It's far from the perfect Asian country many people think it is.
You are correct. After WW II, there was a plan to rebuild Japan industries. With the Soviets so close by it made sense for the allies who could use Japan to extend US and allied power. However, this plan involved nations like the Philippines to stay has supplier for Japans industry which I think was a mistake. This can be found in the Dodds Report.

Quote:

The Dodds Report

In 1946, the Truman administration adopted the recommendation of the report which proposed that Japan be developed as the primary, if not sole, industrial powerhouse in the Asia-Pacific region and that countries like the Philippines should be preserved as raw material economies, obviously to service the requirements of Japan's factories.

As the Asia-Pacific war came to a close, the U.S. obviously made a fateful decision to utilize Japan as the base from which to project U.S. military power, and that required the development of Japan as an industrial powerhouse. But since Japan is a nation bereft of natural resource, the plan obviously required that countries like the Philippines be preserved as raw material economics to ensure Japan with a continuing and permanent source of raw material.

We owe our knowledge of the Dodds Report to the late Salvador Araneta who, during his self-exile in Canada during the martial law years, uncovered the existence of the document and denounced it in his book America's Double-Cross of the Philippines.

These were Araneta's denunciatory words, as he explained the failure of the nation to industrialize: "The indifferent economic development of the country ... was due to America's policy toward Japan and the Philippines. This policy was the result of the Dodds Report which Truman accepted and which had as its objective to make Japan the industrial workshop of Asia and the Philippines a mere supplier of raw materials."

As Araneta bitterly continued: "We do not argue against the wisdom of providing Japan with the means to rehabilitate herself and allowed to become an industrial country once again, although this was contrary to the prior recommendation of a post-war planning committee headed by Secretary Morgenthau, a recommendation which was in line with the prevailing sentiment at the end of the war. But certainly we can argue against a policy that would make Japan the exclusive industrialized country in the Far East, for such a policy was most detrimental to the Philippines. Indeed, the United States could not justify a policy that provided all kinds of stumbling blocks, to the industrialization of her ally (Philippines) in the war against Japan. As a result of this policy, industrialization in the Philippines suffered severe setbacks…”

It was a division of labor, or of functions, which the Dodds, Report crafted for America's allies in the Far East.
Hard work in Japan does not guarantee anything anymore. Watch what some people say in the following short videos. They are from 2008 and 2009 -

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