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Regarding Gregory Clark’s March 24 article, “Nuclear meltdowns and Japanese culture“: It is always a pleasure to read Clark’s considered analysis, steeped as it usually is in high-level personal experience with some wing of the Japanese bureaucracy or industry from the past 30 years.

One always hopes that the Japanese people will overcome their traditional distrust of whistle-blowers to come to demand more transparency and accountability from their government and the nuclear industry after terrible accidents such as the Fukushima nuclear plant incident.

As for what Clark cites as the “usual diet of cheap gag shows and food tasting” that dominates commercial television in Japan, one hopes that more Japanese people overcome this opium of the masses — to cheekily paraphrase Karl Marx — to focus on more pressing issues facing the nation. More analysis from The Japan Times on the corrosive and brain-numbing effect of such television programming would be welcome.

robert flanagan

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