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Guy Sorman

For Guy Sorman's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

Commentary / World Jul 23, 2012

Dreams of isolation imperil island populations

The Japanese and the British may seem very different, but a closer look reveals something akin to a parallel destiny for these two island peoples. With their old imperial ambitions and widespread distaste for the great continents from which the narrowest of seas divide them, ...

Commentary / World Mar 31, 2011

France's hard right embraces soft populism

PARIS — The central paradox of French politics was confirmed once again March 27. In a nationwide vote to select local authorities (the so-called Conseiller General), the far-right National Front gained 11 percent of the votes cast, but secured only 0.1 percent of the ...

Commentary / World Nov 11, 2010

Dreaming of a new Edo era

SEOUL — All eyes have shifted to Seoul as Group of 20 leaders convene Thursday and Friday for the first time in the South Korean capital. The choice is long overdue, as South Korea is a remarkable success story: In one generation, the South ...

Commentary / World Oct 17, 2010

European middle-class entitlements: R.I.P.

PARIS — It is usually easier to see the beginning of something than the end of it. Born in 1945 in postwar Britain, the welfare state met its end in Britain last week when British Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne repudiated the concept ...

Commentary / World Jul 27, 2010

EU leaders must face a welfare state crisis

PARIS — In the Western part of Europe — the part that former U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld maliciously labeled "Old Europe" — almost every government is in deep political trouble. The United Kingdom's new coalition government may be the exception — for now. ...

Commentary / World Apr 8, 2010

It's a Global Century, not an Asian Century

PARIS — It is almost taken for granted nowadays that this is to be the "Asian Century," marking an irreversible political/economic shift in global power from West to East. China has replaced Germany as the world's leading exporter, while South Korea's Korean Electric recently ...

Commentary / World Feb 13, 2010

Treason of the magistrates

PARIS — In democracies, justice is supposed to be independent. Some prosecutors and investigating magistrates, however, conveniently forget this. Indeed many among them are deeply enmeshed in politics, pursuing agendas — and vendettas — of their own. The phenomenon of politicized prosecutors and investigating ...

Commentary / World Nov 22, 2009

Twilight of France's Republican aristocracy

PARIS — No tumbrels have appeared in Paris' Place de la Concorde, but a revolution may be under way in France nonetheless. Recent weeks have seen the trial of former Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin and the conviction of former Defense Minister Charles Pasqua. Now ...

Commentary / World Sep 18, 2009

Japan's harmonious drift

PARIS — Forget what you have heard about the hardworking Japanese salaryman: Since the early 1990s, the Japanese have slackened their work habits. Indeed, Tokyo University economist Fumio Hayashi has demonstrated that the main reason behind Japan's nearly two decades of stagnation has been the ...