Since When Did Japanese Become Insular, Closed Minded People?


Recently, I notice many comments being rapidly issued by media on the insular closed mindset of Japanese people. This surprises me.

Isn’t this strange?  What could it be a sign of?  The reason I feel this way is because a certain number of people including myself have been pointing this out from long time ago, with key words such as ‘Intellectually Isolated Country’ or ‘Cartels of the Mind’ (Ref.1 in Japanese) (Ref.2,3,4 in English)

Despite their serious thinking, didn’t people of distinguished positions sense this issue? Or perhaps they did not wish to admit that the problem existed?

I hear that the November 28th morning issue of Nikkei included a 1 page special report titled ‘Fading Existence (1)’ (by Mr. Yuzo Waki, Deputy Chief Editorial Writer) as part 3 of special feature ‘Japan in These 20 Years: Lessons to be Learned from Long Stagnation’.  Its sub-title was ‘Global Human Assets are Diminishing:  Silent Executives, Youths With Closed Minds'  (in Japanese).  A boxed article of an interview with Toyoo Gyohten, Tadashi Yamamoto, and Lee Howell, Managing Director of World Economic Forum is also on the same issue.  I was told that the Nikkei On-line show similar articles but access to them is not free of charge.  (By the way, I hear that this On-line edition was awarded some prize recently.  I wonder what is so new and wonderful about the Nikkei On-line?  I would like to know the reason why they received this award.)

However, the points they are making in these articles are correct.  I just posted the same discussion and recommendations on November 27th….

I can’t help feeling some sadness and disappointment in this phenomenon. Why is this happening so late and so suddenly?