May 29, 2013

Abenomics vs. bad economics

The good news is that the Japanese economy and stocks are recovering. The bad news is that austerity hawks still view "Abenomics" as a mere flash in the pan.

Nov 28, 2012

Japan's university education crisis

Education minister Makiko Tanaka has apologized for trying to cancel approvals given by her ministry bureaucrats for three institutions seeking to operate as fully fledged four-year universities providing undergraduate degrees. But should she have apologized? There is a crisis in Japanese tertiary education. Student ...

Aug 22, 2012

Remembering Japan's 'deserters'

The Obon festival celebrated on Aug. 15 in many parts of Japan marks the alleged release of ghosts from past mythical sufferings. The Aug. 15 anniversary of Japan’s 1945 defeat also gives Japan’s dwindling band of progressive TV program producers freedom to confront the ...

Aug 15, 2012

Economics of austerity don't add up

Do Europe’s budget-cutting austerity-minded planners understand simple math? They say they have to embrace austerity policies to reduce excessive national debt. But those policies inevitably cut tax revenues more than they cut spending. National debt increases rather than decreases. Worse, recovery from the economic ...

Jul 4, 2012

Reforming Japan's universities

Media reports say Japan’s education bureaucrats are considering allowing students with “stellar” academic records to graduate from high school before they turn 18. In other words, the required three-year stint at high school might be cut to two. In most countries, allowing university entry ...