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Its hard to think of "what does Japan do?" independently of "what does China do?" For the entire western Pacific Basin, whether China makes it through the camel's eye or collapses into political chaos is the number one question for any future scenario over the two decades ahead.


I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.
by BruceMcF (agila61 at netscape dot net) on Tue Aug 23rd, 2011 at 05:53:54 PM EST
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But that relationship is a one-way street: If China goes tits-up, it's Bad News for Japan. If Japan goes tits-up, it's only moderately inconvenient for China.

And it is trivially easy to come up with scenarios in which China pulls through while Japan thirdworldizes. The easiest way would be for Japan to spend the next thirty years pursuing a full Thatcherist lobotomy of its industrial culture.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Tue Aug 23rd, 2011 at 06:28:03 PM EST
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I'm not sure I see Japan doing that ... for one thing, China is right there next door, so doing a full Thatcherite lobotomy of their industrial economy is a scarier thing.

And on the other hand, its something more than an inconvenience to China if Japan goes belly up, at least in the next decade or so. Lots of Chinese exports go out with Japanese designs under Japanese QC and with a Japanese brand, including assembled with Japanese components. My impression is Japan is a more integral part of the production side of the Chinese economy than North America or the EU.

I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.

by BruceMcF (agila61 at netscape dot net) on Wed Aug 24th, 2011 at 03:34:02 AM EST
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Sort of like looking at Britain separately from the rest of Europe? Interesting coincidence that the UK and Japan both drive on the left...stubbornly rejecting the "normality" of their huge neighbors...
by asdf on Sat Aug 27th, 2011 at 11:02:31 AM EST
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