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bendy

Are We Undergoing A Meiji Restoration?

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been doin g a bit of research for a book tonight and as usual on wikipedia end up clicking links here there and everywhere and end up reading and old stuff (the wright brothers is a good wiki articl worth a read).

anyway, i got too the russo-japanese war, which is basically about trade channels, but from that got to japans meiji govt back in the 19th century.

anyway, basically (sorry for using that word again, link at the end), the govt of the time decided they didn't like the fuedal system and drew it all back in too central govt (through force here in some cases).

this bit here stands out like a sore ****:

Throughout Japan at the time, the samurai numbered 1.9 million. (For comparison, this was more than 10 times the size of the French privileged class before the 1789 French Revolution. Moreover, the samurai in Japan were not merely the lords, but also their higher retainers--people who actually worked.) With each samurai being paid fixed stipends, their upkeep presented a tremendous financial burden, which may have prompted the oligarchs to action. Whatever their true intentions, the oligarchs embarked on another slow and deliberate process to abolish the samurai class. First, in 1873, it was announced that the samurai stipends were to be taxed on a rolling basis. Later, in 1874, the samurai were given the option to convert their stipends into government bonds. Finally, in 1876, this commutation was made compulsory.

i'd say that is fairly represnentative of uk today - too many, too 'rich', too quick.

the slow and deliberate process will continue, and with it, HPC :lol:

link to wiki article.

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I lived in Japan for a few years.

One of the things that amazed me about the Meiji Shrine was how 135 years of modernization (from 1868 when Meiji was restored to 2003 when I was there) could be stripped away when people got close to the Emperor's casket.

Japanese women in short skirts with orange hair, tatoos and body piercings suddenly became very traditional in the way that they carried themselves when they approached Meiji.

I do not expect a similar level of reverence to be exhibited when people walk past the grave of GB on some windswept hill in the middle of nowhere in the next few decades.

The difference between Meiji and GB is that Meiji was a true radical who re-established Japan's raison d'etre. Our current leaders are trying to recreate 1997 to 2006 by recreating unsustainable conditions from that era that have no hope at all of succeeding.

We are not entering a period akin to the Meiji resortation.

The chaos of the two to three hundred years before 1868 during the chaotic and destructive Shogun era in Japan is probably the best parallel that we can draw to the current situation in formerly rich western nations to-day. I do not expect that any current Western leaders will exhibit the strength of character and will that Meiji was able to extert to help us resolve this crisis.

While I understand the parallels that you are trying to draw, I think that Meiji was about leadership and vision and I do not see anyone in this country who will tower above a difficult situation in the way that Meiji was able to.

Edited by LuckyOne

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I have calmed down a bit now .....

I do have a serious question.

The collapse of the Shogun /samurai era in Japan in 1868 was probably as transformational from a societal perspective at the time as the collapse of the banker / political era in our society to-day.

Does anyone have a view about the people who can lead us out of this mess as effectively as Meiji was able to do in his day?

My vote is somewhat exclusionary. I do not think that Brown, Cameron, Osbourne, Clegg or Darling can do it. I wonder whether Cable or King are our people for the times .........

King was slammed for his "moral hazard" views at the time of the collapse of NR. In the longer run, I think that he was right.

Cable seems to be the only senior political figure who actually understands what is happening at the moment.

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