3.6.11

Sayonara Kan-san....


Video from the Telegraph:  Japanese PM survives vote of no confidence by offering to resign

ON MAY 13th Yoshihiro Murai, governor of the tsunami-stricken prefecture of Miyagi, received an angry petition from the bosses of a co-operative that has long controlled some of the richest fishing grounds off the coast of north-eastern Japan. Their slogan: “We won’t let fishermen be turned into salarymen.” They were responding to his proposal that, in return for money to rebuild their shattered livelihoods, they should let private firms fish in Miyagi’s waters. Mr Murai, a former pilot, was undeterred by their protests, noting that with most of them over 60, the industry risked dying out anyway. Later he told The Economist that deregulation of Miyagi’s coastline should serve as a model for reform nationwide. “There’s always pain when there’s revolution,” he said.

That resolve has become more common since the earthquake and tsunami of March 11th and the subsequent nuclear crisis jolted Japanese citizens’ faith in their country and those who run it. The question now is whether the reformist zeal will stop at the rebuilding of Tohoku, the devastated region in the north-east, or go further, to solve the problems of overcapacity, high public debt and deflation that were plaguing Japan long before the disaster...