Japanese dignity : goodness and self-knowledge

It has been about 40 years since Japan became a frequenter of the summit conference.

Though Japan was an economic big power, will it have ability?

Are we well-positioned in 193 countries of United Nations members?

The following indices show the ability of Japan.

In 2011, the ranking of nominal GDP per capita was the 18th place in 181 countries.

Though the economy of Japan is in a falling tendency, the index is higher because of a strong yen than its ability.

Let us look at Japanese dignity.


人間開発 World map by quartiles of Human Development Index


< World map by quartiles of Human Development Index in 2011、the more it is thick blue, the more the index is high. >

United Nations announces Human Development Index every year.

This is a comparative measure of life expectancy, literacy, education, standards of living, and quality of life for countries worldwide.

The ranking was the 9th place in 2007, it fell to the 12th place in 2011.

However, it will be a satisfactory level.

But the women’s participation in society remains at very low levels. The ranking in 2009 was the 57th place.


報道の自由 Worldwide Press Freedom Index in 2009


< Worldwide Press Freedom Index in 2009, the more blue color, the more freedom. >

Reporters Without Borders announces Worldwide Press Freedom Index every year.

The report is written by journalists, researchers, jurists and human rights activists from around the world.

The ranking was the 22th place in 2011 and 2012. They blame Japanese press club system.

Since the ranking is the top in Asia, there is a little hope.

Though the deviation of Japanese mass media may not be as intense as the U.S., it is one of the big concern for our democracy.

The ranking of U.S. was the 47th.


民主主義 Democracy Index in 2011


< Democracy Index in 2011、the more index is large , the more this country is democratic. >

The Democracy Index is compiled by a research center in U.K.

The Democracy Index is evaluated by electoral process, civil liberties, functioning of government, political participation and political culture.

The ranking was the 21th place in 2011 .

How do you feel this ranking?  Good or bad.

Once, South Korean democracy was a low level, but this reform is advancing.  Therefore it extracted Japan and ranked 20th last year.

I think that Japanese democracy still at a low level.

In Japan, there are extraordinarily many hereditary councilors.

And the term of office of Japan’s prime minister is one year on average.

Therefore Japan is not a democratically advanced nation

But I estimate generally that Japan is endowed with rich economic strength, the orderly medical system, a pension system, press freedom and democracy.

Let’s apply a spot to two situations here.


税率  Income Tax rates by Country based on OECD 2005 data


<  Income Tax rates by Country based on OECD 2005 data >

This tax rates focuses on three types of taxes: corporate taxes, individual taxes and sales taxes.

Though Japan is a high welfare state, many people do not desire a burden.


自殺率 Deaths for self inflicted injuries per 100,000 inhabitants in 2009


< Deaths for self inflicted injuries per 100,000 inhabitants in 2009. >

The suicide rates are data from the World Health Organization. Japan is 5th, South Korean is 2th.

The country where a lot of suicides exist will be considered to be an unhappy country.

But the reason is important.

Though there is probably an economical reason, it is guessed that the reason why the suicide rate is high is in the culture in the advanced country.

The cause will be culture for which cooperation with neighbors and consideration for others are very needed.

A comprehensive view.

*The situation of the democracy or the press which urge moderate reproduction to the politics lacks something.

*Many people refuse the tax burden although they desire social security. Our public spirit is low. 

*Including sex discrimination, there are remaining a bondage of the old society.

Although Japan is a good country, I think that the same politics and society as advanced nations are not growing.

 All figures are reproduced from Wikipedia.



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