• Molokai, Hawaii

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Regarding the Dec. 27 front-page article “Record output fall raises alarms“: My concern is for those who consider jumping in front of a train as a solution to financial or work-related problems because of the recession that is creating depression in Japanese society. What needs to change is the way the Japanese consumer over-consumes anything and everything.

What to do. It begins with the individual moving away from the herd mentality of past generations who enslaved themselves to corporate goals and lost their soul in the bargain. In recessionary times, everyone has to cut back on things they don’t need. Back to basics means growing your own organic food, drinking less beer, eating less crap you get at the convenience store, eating at home more. These are not new to those who are not rich or on expense accounts.

There needs to be a spiritual return to the old ways of Japan — the ways of the land and sea and of nature and family — where people mean more than money or the things you can buy. I live in Hawaii and have seen herds of 20-something girls living at home, buying Gucci bags, not getting married until 30, many not wanting children or the responsibility. With jobs now more prized, you will see more stay-at-home wives, more mothers, maybe even more romance in a return to old ways.

Yes, you need money, but how much money and what do you really need to spend it on? Most of the time it is for status and ego — not for important things. Your life is important and you can make a difference in small things that can change your life each day. You can find new ways to be useful, friendly and giving of what is most precious of all — love for others. Aloha.

kimo kekahuna

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