Saturday, 7 July 2012

KUROKAWA'S FUKUSHIMA REPORT: THE MIXED METAPHOR AND THE GROUP HUG


Oh dear. Our Man does hope the wheels aren't going to fall off the Kurokawa report into the Fukushima accident before it's had time to build any kind of momentum (the editor does hope Our Man stops mixing his metaphors before the reader has a chance to get to the point -- ed.) but seems this line about the blame for Fukushima is causing folk to get their knickers in a twist:
Its fundamental causes are to be found in the ingrained conventions of Japanese culture: our reflexive obedience; our reluctance to question authority; our devotion to 'sticking with the program'; our groupism; and our insularity.
This line doesn't appear to be in the Japanese language version of the report, which has led folk far smarter than Our Man to conclude that the report may be:
  • A personal soapbox for Kurokawa whose thing is internationalism.
  • It's the here-we-go-again Japan is unique, has four seasons, not like anywhere else, evolved from a different breed of ape bullshit. So therefore, it's not such a big deal report after all, just an appeal to outmoded and inaccurate cultural stereotypes.
  • Evidence that there are two reports -- one for the foreigners and one for the Japanese. Take your pick of what the implications of all that might be.
Our Man doesn't want to be seen as an apologist for Kurokawa, or Japan as unique, or anything that might suggest he knows more than any one else on this and many other matters -- he really, really doesn't... but...

But is it possible that this line of spin, thrown in for whatever reason, is just that -- a bit of spin? And maybe the meat and potatoes of the matter (watch those mixed metaphors, smart ass - ed.) are contained elsewhere in the report -- you know the bits about the nuke company colluding with the regulators colluding with the media colluding with whoever else is left to collude with that allowed the natural disaster turn into a man made tragedy?

For what it's worth, Our Man believes toadyism, reflexive obedience, devotion to sticking to the program and insularity are not exclusive to the Japanese; they apply equally to elites in the West too. Hello, Goldman Sachs? Hello, The U.S. Government? Hello, The UK Conservative Party? Hello, The Murdoch Empire? Et bloody cetera.

Meanwhile, as the resistance movement bickers, the Gomiuri Shimbun can begin Phase One of the business as usual approach: marginalise the report by burying the point in a haystack of words in which there's something for everyone.

Sigh.

The smart talk seems to be over at Shisaku. Looking forward to his considered take. All this fake thinking for himself is giving Our Man a headache. Need a group-think group hug.

Carry on!

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

The smart talk is at Our Man In Abiko! Thank you.
ps. Of course Shisaku is smart, too but he doesn't mix his metaphors so I lose the plot every once in a blue moon.

Our Man in Abiko said...

You are a man/woman/figment-of-imagination of taste, Anonymous.

Our Man just hopes that this storm in a teapot does not throw the baby out into the bush before the stitch in time, er, spoils the broth.