Byron Angel wrote:
Or are you focusing selectively upon the Japan that we fought against in WW2?
I am focussing on the sentence that contained that statement and responded in its context. Japan as a colonial ruler was not efficient. It failed to get the best out of any of its colonies, be it Korea, Taiwan, Malaya or the Dutch East Indies, not least because their administrators were not up to the job.
Japanese industry was not efficient either, in terms of organisation and production techniques. Quality control was also deficient, along with transport logistics and the allocation of materials. Quality of materials towards the end of the war also became increasingly deficient. Another failure was to obtain a proper dispersion of the location of industry in the face of Allied bombing.
Japan was of course under military rule through this period, where even the senior officer corps were not very well educated or knowledgeable of the rest of the world. Business acumen and enterprise was not particulary valued. The military even made a pigs ear out of the use of forced POW labour to build railways, where proper working conditions would have achieved far more than the regime of brutality for its own sake.
Japan post WW2 is a very different nation in its atitudes and outlook on the world. Having learned from WW2 and incorporated American business atitudes their industries and economy became far more efficient because their work ethic and discipline was more properly focussed.
And yes, the Japanese - given time - will deal with the tsunami damage and the Fukushima nuclear plant damage completely. Again a combination of a disciplined work ethic and intelligent planning will turn that disaster to advantage, and the signs are that Japan is starting to pull out of the worldwide recession and slump that the Japanese economy has been in for the last fifteen years.
''Give me a Ping and one Ping only'' - Sean Connery.