Japan’s Wrong Turn

By the end of the 1990’s, the Japanese Miracle had faded. While they still were/are making some good products, they had lost their advantage. Why? What went wrong. … I recently discovered an answer at the School of Cooperative Individualism.

Bill Totten

When Japan’s economy was booming in the 1950s, 60s and 70s, Japan’s leaders had the following philosophy:

1. The PURPOSE or GOAL of a society is the happiness of its members; the purpose of goal of Japan then was the happiness of Japanese citizens.

2. Companies have two roles in society: (1) To provide products and services that contribute to citizens’ happiness, and (2) To provide jobs so citizens could pay for those products and services.

3. Profit should NOT be a company’s goal. Not even one of its goals! A company should only make enough profit to continue as a viable business; that is, to cover the R&D and plant & facility investments it needs to stay viable. If a company has a chance to make more profits than that, it should refrain from making them and, instead, either sell its products and services at lower prices, provide higher wages and benefits to its employees, or both.

That was the philosophy that made Japan Number 1, the philosophy of the Japanese Miracle, the philosophy that created the greatest economic growth (and social gains) in the history of this planet.

Most of those Japanese leaders, who received Confucian educations prior to 1945, had retired by around 1980 and were succeeded by people educated in the system imposed by General Douglas MacArthur’s Occupation after 1945. They have destroyed Japan’s Miracle, and are ruining Japan’s economy, with the same philosophy that has knocked the United States from its economic and social pinnacle down to third-world status:

1. Economic Darwinism (free competition): Society is a jungle where the strong have the right to take what they can from the weak. Government regulations hindering this should be relaxed or eliminated.

2. The role of companies is to make as much profit as possible as fast as possible. The main techniques are: (1) Advertise heavily to dupe citizens into excessive consumption and spending, and (2) Treat employees like coal, oil and other resources; get the maximum production from the lowest possible expenditure on resources; if your fellow citizens are too expensive, take your factories to places where you can hire cheaper human resources.

3. If speculating on stocks and bonds is a faster way to make big profits than researching and developing new products, then gamble your R&D budget on stocks and bonds. If speculating in land is a faster way to make big profits than increasing the productivity of workers, then gamble your plant & facility budget on land.

4. Use your profits to buy politicians who will reduce your taxes—reduce progressive taxes on high incomes; reduce corporate income taxes; create loopholes and tax breaks available only to rich people and large corporations who can afford expensive lawyers and accountants; reduce taxes on inheritances, land speculation, stock and bond speculation; and so on.

5. When this creates huge government deficits, do the following: (1) Make more money by loaning (at interest) the money the government needs to cover the deficits it created by reducing your taxes; (2) Brainwash the citizenry into ‘privatization’ of society’s assets—such as railroads, telephone companies, NASA. These, of course, became valuable because they were built with everyone’s tax money and protected by government monopolies. But when they’re privatized (sold off) only rich people and rich corporations can afford them. (3) Hector the government into reducing the deficits (resulting from cutting your taxes) remaining after ‘privatization’ by cutting services to the average citizen—that is, cutting spending on health, education, welfare and similar services. (4) Get the government to raise excise, social security, and other taxes that fall mostly on citizens who earn most of their incomes from working and must spend most of those incomes on consumption.

6. Use your advertising clout with Business Week, Fortune, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, CBS, NBC, ABC, CNN and other media that get most of their revenues and profits from advertising to brainwash the general public into submitting docilely to this rape and plunder; if possible, convince them that it’s in their own best interests.

Japan’s MacArthur-educated colonials have used this philosophy since the early 1980s to plunder Japan’s economy.

Mason Gaffney, Professor of Economics, University of California writes: Bill Totten is an American born USC grad who runs a business in Japan, where he lives, has married, and raised a family. His mind has been greatly stimulated by rubbing two cultures together, not to mention rubbing together business leadership with a social conscience. His statement … is so cogent, I thought you would find it useful and challenging, as I do.