Fukushima Nuclear Incident - a cultural question

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Gaucho, Apr 12, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. Gaucho
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    Gaucho Gold Member

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    Before I ask the question... a little background. I lived in Japan for 2 years as a young child, so my family and I know Japanese culture quite well, and Japan and its people hold a special place in our hearts... one of my sisters was born in Tokyo. Later in life, I traveled and worked in Japan very frequently, and have amongst my good friends various Japanese which live both in Japan and also abroad.

    One of the things we learned in Japan is the special nature of the Japanese as a people, as a community, and how highly they hold values of trust, honesty, and how important they place a "communal sense" of their community above personal or individual interests. At the same time, I understand that the concept of "loss of face" is also very important in Japan... but this leads me to the following question...

    Has the apparent cover up of the Fukushima disaster been a case of "loss of face" being more important than protecting the public and telling the truth...? Maybe I’ve watched too many Samurai movies... but my sense is that if traditional Japanese values were to be applied to this situation, a good part of the board of TEPCO (the company that operates the power plants) should have considered Seppuku...?

    Not telling the truth and defrauding the public, which appears to have been what has happened here is something so un-Japanese to me that I just can’t seem to understand what has happened... or maybe even Japan has fallen to the ever more popular degradation of good old fashioned customs and rules of civility...?
     
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