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Oliver Brown
Japan


I remember when the Tories justified the "southward drift of industry" by alleging "Scotland’s distance from the world’s markets" as the reason. That has been triumphantly refuted by the Japanese who have overcome an enormously greater difficulty in that respect and thereby captured an increasingly large share of Europe’s car market.

It is so easy to prove beforehand that Japan’ s difficulties would make that feat impossible. There were three unforeseen factors, Japanese initiative, Japanese imaginativeness and Japanese self-reliance - characteristics which we under English rule are not allowed to exercise or to develop.

(Feb. 28, 1970)


If you add together all Japan’s economic disadvantages - distance from the word markets, lack of raw materials, lack of ground space, infertile land, the demoralisation of a defeated nation - you must conclude that it is a distressed and underdeveloped area. That is the mistake of the economist who overestimates economic factors and ignores the fundamental one - the will of a people to live.


 

 


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