Wednesday, November 26, 2008


After all the time that I have wasted worrying about the global economy, I was reassured today by my buddy, the Thunderbird MBA, who explained the rationale behind his theory of why Japan will not be seriously affected by the downturn and will possibly once again (?) take over from the US the position of the world's top economic power.

It goes like this: Since Japan's financial system has not (!?) been affected by the global financial crisis, the fact that the other major economies of the world are having serious problems will provide Japanese companies with an opportunity to increase their market share in those countries. It will also cause foreign investment to increasingly flow into Japan (where we are to assume that it will be welcomed with open arms?) I am a bit confused as how companies will be able to increase market share of shrinking markets when nobody is buying anything unless Thunderbird guy is counting on a lot of bankruptcies. Of course, there would be no moves by any of those countries to protect their weakened industries either. Unfortunately, I never pursued those points any further.

However, just for fun I mentioned the indebtedness of US consumers and government and the dependence of the US on borrowing from foreign countries like Japan and China* (why did I so enjoy emphasizing Japan as a foreign country? How could Japan be foreign?) and wondered how he thought it could be sustainable. He seemingly had no knowledge of this and could not say much about it. Well, he is working in HR...

It has been said that you can judge the size of a man by the size of the things which irritate him. I am shrinking. Rapidly.

*I linked to this below, but Japan Focus has an article explaining in very easy to understand terms the risks and dangers of this system and why this system must be reformed or replaced. Debt Man Walking, by John B. Judis---very much worth reading.

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